JOHANNESBURG – Trade union Solidarity on Wednesday said it had launched a major three month campaign that will culminate in the submission of a collective complaint to, among others, the International Human Rights Commission on what it said was the selective way in which racism was being dealt with in South Africa.
In a statement Solidarity said it also intends to publish a report on the “double standards that apply when dealing with racism”. It said it will host a conference on this topic.
“A collective complaint by which tens of thousands of South Africans will ask that all forms of racism in South Africa be judged by the same yardstick, will also form part of the campaign,” said Dirk Hermann, the chief executive of Solidarity.
Hermann said at the end of the campaign, “the complaint” will be presented to Parliament, the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the United Nations’ Human Rights Commission (UNCHR), as well as to the UN’s Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination (CERD).
“The complaint will show that, as far as racism is concerned, different standards apply to different groups and that politicians and government officials are the main instigators of selective racism,” Hermann said.
The Solidarity chief executive said South Africans have “had enough of the double standards” applied with regard to race in South Africa, especially politicians and people in positions of authority who incite racial tensions.
“Because of selective racism, forms of racism perpetrated by white people against black people receive disproportionate coverage. By way of illustration, take Penny Sparrow, an ordinary member of the public who was not in a position of authority,” said.
“She was vilified time and again for unacceptable remarks she made about black South Africans while the remarks made by Levuyo Menziwa, an EFF [Economic Freedom Fighters] student leader, that he wanted to kill ‘f**en whites’ with a bazooka or an AK47 have long since been forgotten,” Hermann said.
“Solidarity achieved great success last year at the session with the United Nations’ Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) and we are poised to resume the case and to make our voice and the voices of many South Africans heard again at an international forum later this year,” Hermann announced.
– African News Agency (ANA)