DA condemns racism at Delmas “anti-crime” march
Anthony Benadie, DA Leader in Mpumalanga
31 May 2012
The DA condemns, in the strongest terms, the racist remarks, slogans and posters at the march protesting violent crime against women and children in Delmas this morning.
The march, organised by members of the Afrikaner Volksraadskommissie, is in reaction to the tragic murder of the five-month-old baby, Wiehan Botes, and Ms Margrietha de Goede, his caregiver in Delmas last week.
This barbaric act of murder is condemned and should rightly outrage every South African. However, it is uncalled for and unfortunate that the Afrikaner Volksraad Verkiesing Kommissie (VVK) chose to reduce such a tragic event to a racial slur, by proclaiming that this murder was racially motivated. According to the DA’s current information, no report has yet provided any evidence to suggest that the attack and murder was racially motivated.
Some of poster slogans displayed by the VVK include: “Black cowards – leave our women and children alone”, “Besteel, verkrag, vermoor: Ons is klaar met swart Suid-Afrika” and “Barbare los ons kinders uit”.
Crime and murder affects all race groups in our country, and the VVK is conveniently disregarding this fact to justify their racist behaviour. More so, the DA believes that the VVK is opportunistically exploiting this tragedy in an attempt to add credibility to their organisation. By turning this double murder into a race-related issue, the VVK is in fact not only driving a wedge between race groups, but also attempting to undermine the efforts of all South Africans who are dedicated to fighting crime.
Last week, the Mpumalanga Legislature adopted a DA-tabled motion, condemning this horrific act and calling on the SAPS to leave no stone unturned to arrest the killers. To this end, we are pleased at media reports this morning that the SAPS have arrested two suspects relating to these murders.
Over the past few weeks, several incidents in South Africa have compromised race relations in the country and placed the unity of South Africa under severe strain. The actions of the VVK entrenches those divisions and serve only the interest of those who wish to keep South Africans divided. There is no place for them in our society.
No amount of racial division can successfully address any of South Africa’s problems, including crime. It is imperative the South Africans of all races stand together in the fight against crime and any other challenge facing our country.
The DA calls on all residents of Delmas, as well as the Victor Khanye municipality, to distance themselves from this event, and stand together as one community during this trying time.