Court issues R42 000 fine for anti-Indian comments
The Equality Court has ordered two men convicted of inciting racial hatred against Indian South Africans to pay R42 000 to an orphanage, the Daily News reports. In April, Magistrate John Sanders found Phumlani Mfeka and Zweli Sangweni, of the Mazibuye African Forum, guilty of hate speech for comments made in news articles and interviews in 2013/14.
The Human Rights Commission and the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation filed complaints against them for labelling Mahatma Gandhi a racist, claiming Indians had enslaved Africans, and the use of the 'C-word' in a Mazibuye newsletter.
Sanders had found that Mfeka and Sangweni had not shown remorse for their comments although the case had taken so long in court.
Following the judgment, Sanders had requested that in the 'interest of justice and equity' he wanted to afford the legal representatives of the parties an opportunity to address him before any sanction and/or sanctions is/are imposed in the matter.
Yesterday Sanders said the court accepted that Mfeka and Sangweni were not financially well off and that they were unable to secure the services of a counsel to represent them due to financial constraints.
'What I do not accept is the notion that the respondents are men of straw who are totally dependent on the largess on their families for their survival. They are self-confessed activists who travel all over the city and the province, engaged in activities. The notion that they rely on their families generosity is highly improbable,' he said.
He ordered them to pay R42 000 to Isibani Sethemba an orphanage in Kwavuma in northern KZN in three instalments of R14 000 from 31 August.
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