Mngxitama hits out at SAHRC’s attempts to ‘ban’ the BLF

The commission has called for them to be prevented from contesting the 2019 elections.

Black First, Land First (BLF) will face mediation with the SA Human Rights Commision (SAHRC) on Monday.

According to a tweet by BLF leader Andile Mngxitama, the constitution body is attempting to have the controversial party “banned.”

The SAHRC is engaged in “a thinly veiled attempt to ban BLF,” a statement from the party says.

Another tweet by Mgxitama, claimed that the commission “wants to stop the BLF from contesting elections in 2019”, appears to be closer to the actual bone, which is that, while the organisation will not be banned altogether, the commission is calling for them to have their eligibility as a political party revoked.

In July the party made similar claims that they risked being banned after facing the Equality Court on charges of hate speech brought by an individual called Lucy Strydom, represented by the SAHRC.

READ MORE: You’ve heard of ‘the white genocide’. Meet ‘the black holocaust’

According to a statement issued by the BLF, the party itself put forward the notion in that case that the matter needed to proceed to mediation and the magistrate “agreed with” them.

They further claimed that the magistrate ruled that the BLF should apply for assistance from the SAHRC to fund its legal representation, just as the complainant, Strydom, had done.

“The SAHRC has turned down BLF’s subsequent written request for legal assistance, without any sound reason,” the party’s statement continued.

The party has accuses the commission of bias.

“We note the blatant bias on the part of the SAHRC. They are quick to assist the racist Lucy Strydom but are refusing to give BLF the same courtesy.”

Though the commission has made the recommendation that the BLF’s eligibility as a political party should be revoked, they do not themselves have the power to carry it out.

READ MORE: BLF claim to be targets of the state

Following their appearance at the Equality Court in July, a senior representative of the SAHRC told The Citizen that the BLF was “using rhetoric to misrepresent the facts”, he said, highlighting that the outcome of the complaint would be for a recommendation to be made to another body, “similar to how a matter can be referred to the NPA”.

“We don’t have the power to ban them and nor does the court,” he added.

“We don’t prosecute criminally; rather it’s about referring aspects of the matter to the correct channels,” he continued.

The SAHRC has made “an order in terms of section 212L of the Equality Act recommending that the [Independent Electoral Commission of SA] review the respondents’ eligibility for registration as a political party given the parties’ frequent violent threats to white people”.

The SAHRC believes the BLF’s “statements violate the Electoral Act”.

According to the BLF, slogans such as “by any means necessary”, “take back the land”, “land or death” and “one settler, one bullet” are called out in the complaint.

Mngxitama has called these “legitimate slogans” in response to what he calls “The Black Holocaust”.

In 2016, the party’s spokesperson expressed a desire to kill white people saying: “I have aspirations to kill white people, and this must be achieved!”

Over the past weekend, Maasdorp told The Citizen’s digital news editor: “Your existence is a crime. Hence we say land or death.”

The commission had not responded to calls for comment at the time of this article going to print.

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