Former Durban Councilor Arrested For Racial Comments Against South African President
Former Durban councilor Kessie Nair arrested for using racial slurs against South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.
A former city councilor of Indian origin was arrested for using racial slurs against President Cyril Ramaphosa in South Africa.
Kessie Nair was charged at Verulam Magistrates Court with inciting violence and crimen injuria, or injuring a person’s dignity, BBC News reported.
The KwaZulu-Natal businessman will be in custody till Sept. 26 when his bail application will be heard in the court, News24 reported.
The arrest was based on a video of Nair in which he is seen uttering derogatory racial remarks against Ramaphosa, calling him a “kafir,” and saying that he can take a bullet or go to jail but the truth will hurt, which he is going to unveil.
The 4.46-minute video shows him saying, “I… do hereby call for that kaffir state president Mr. Cyril Ramaphosa, yes I mean the kaffir state president Cyril Ramaphosa, to be charged for defrauding this nation, for oppressing this nation, for high treason, for failing and he’s the source to all crime, violence, poor healthcare, poverty that prevails in a so-called true democracy.”
In the comment section, Nair wrote:
Further, he uploaded his address details with an open statement of going to prison and asked people to submit a copy of the video to the ANC office.
Nair, who is a nephew of the late Billy Nair, a respected South African politician and anti-apartheid activist, told News24 that it took him 13 years of introspection to speak up his mind. “Nobody wakes up one morning and makes a statement and a video like that on social media,” he was quoted as saying.
Nair’s comments received widespread condemnation. His own family expressed displeasure over the video.
“As a family we distance ourselves from such utterances and statements. We have a history of being in the trenches fighting apartheid and being involved in the struggle for the liberation of this country from the shackles of the Nationalist government,” his brother Krishnan Nair said, adding that the former Durban councilor “lacks the intelligence and understating of what he is saying” since he is “physically and mentally unwell.”
Nair’s mental state has been talked about on the social media earlier too, in response to some of his posts.
— Melanie Webb (@MelanieWebbSA) September 19, 2018
Nair, however, remained unapologetic and told Times Live: “I don’t think I’m being racist. I want to make a point‚ which I did. I am prepared to face the consequences. If the nation feels I was wrong‚ I will accept.”
Nair was earlier convicted in 2005 for fraud when he was sentenced to six years in prison, the BBC report added.