News statement by ANC Western Cape
[No embargo 20 September 2015]
ANC Vindicated by #PharrellProtest Court decision against City of Cape Town
The African National Congress (ANC) in the Western Cape welcomes yesterday's Western Cape High Court ruling that declared the DA-led City of Cape Town’s decision to limit the upcoming #PharrellProtest as unconstitutional.
The fact that the judgment has now allowed 106 times more the number of protesters than the City of Cape Town had initially allowed exposes how undemocratic and unacceptable the city was being. The fact that the City of Cape Town decided to try and defend its decision in court (and now has to pay costs of both the applicants and themselves) shows that they think it is acceptable to spend thousands of rand of tax payers money oppressing Pro-Palestinian protesters. This strange behavior exposes just how serious and problematic it is for City of Cape Town to have a twinning arrangement with an Israeli city and to have a pro-Israel and abusive political party, the DA, in provincial government.
The DA led city of Cape Town initially rejected the protest application but later back-tracked following an outcry by ourselves and other organziations. The DA led City of Cape Town then tried to stifle and reduce the protest to 150 people, which they have failed at doing following yesterday's court judgment. This stifiling of pro-Palestinian activism is both an attack on human rights protesters who want to show their support for Palestine and an attack on freedom of expression and assembly.
The ANC trusts that South Africans and the people of Cape Town will celebrate this victory by joining us as we protest hand in hand with civil society and community members for the people of Palestine on Monday 21 September. The ANC is unequivocal, we stand with the oppressed people of Palestine and we stand with the right for people to protest as it is a right we fought and many of our people died for.
The ANC welcomes yesterday's judgment and the bold decision by BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) activists to take the Pro-Israel DA led City of Cape to court to over-turn the initial unconstitutional and oppressive attempt by the City of Cape Town to reduce the voices of thousands who stand with Palestine.
While the DA stands with Israel, the ANC has for a long time consistently and unequivocally supported the people of Palestine in their quest for self determination and resistance of a brutal military occupation. It is with this same consistent spirit that we support the upcoming #PharrellProtest set to take place at the Grandwest Casino on 21 September.
The ANC will be encouraging and mobilising its members to join BDS South Africa, the MJC, COSATU, SA Jews for a Free Palestine and the dozens of other Palestine solidarity organisations that will gather on Monday.
We will not stop calling for a free Palestine as the African National Congress.
For comment contact:
Issued: Faiez Jacobs, ANC Western Cape Secretary +27 (0) 83 633 7690