PRESS RELEASE: Non-participation of Senior ANC leaders at SA Jewish Board of Deputies conference welcomed by BDS South Africa
15 September 2014
Embarrassingly for the SA Jewish Board of Deputies, neither the ANC Treasurer-General Cde Zweli Mkhize nor the Gauteng Premier Cde David Makhura were present at the SA Jewish Board of Deputies Conference yesterday in Sandton, Johannesburg. Both Makhura and Mkhize were advertised by the SAJBD as speakers. The Palestine solidarity and human rights organization, BDS South Africa, welcomes the non participation of these two senior ANC leaders. Their withdrawal or non-participation comes after BDS South Africa, the ANC Youth League and others raised concerns about the hypocritical character of SA Jewish Board of Deputies and the problem of speaking at an event of an organziation that supported Apartheid South Africa during the 1980s and today supports Apartheid in Israel.
The ANC Youth League, BDS South Africa and other human rights activists held a successful protest, representing the thousands of Israeli murdered Palestinian civilians, outside the Investec Banking building in Sandton yesterday where the SAJBD were holding their Conference to show our frustration against Israel and its supporters. Click here for photos.
The SA Jewish Board of Deputies, as the ANC Youth League has indicated, is not a religious organization but an Israeli government lobby group in this country. We thus welcome that the SAJBD platform was not attended by any senior ANC leader, we believe that the ANC should not tarnish themselves by associating with this particular lobby group.
In fact, to explain to the public just how far removed this lobby group is from the ANC, we note that the Jewish board of deputies does not even know the of spelling Cde Zweli Mkhize's name, as they have shown on their posters. (See attached)
Mthunzi Mbuli, of BDS South Africa, said that: “It is a well-known fact that the ANC, the ANC-led Alliance and the general South African population are long-time friends of the Palestinian people – a people that stood by us Black South Africans in the struggle against Apartheid. We as BDS South Africa and ANC Youth League reject all forms of racism including anti-semitism, however, our successful protest was anything but anti-Semitic. We were protesting against an Israeli lobby and were joined by several progressive Jews of the South African community. ”
ISSUED BY MUHAMMED DESAI ON BEHALF OF BDS SOUTH AFRICABOYCOTT, DIVESTMENT AND SANCTIONS AGAINST ISRAEL in SOUTH AFRICA (BDS SOUTH AFRICA)
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