President Cyril Ramaphosa has called for the systematic dismantling of racism in schools and institutions of higher learning.
He was reacting to the video in which a white student is seen urinating on the belongings of a black student at Stellenbosch University in the Western Cape.
“The country has, in recent days, been outraged at the sight of a white student at the University of Stellenbosch degrading and humiliating a fellow black student in a despicable act,” says Ramaphosa in his weekly letter.
The black student has laid criminal charges of housebreaking, malicious damage to property and crimen injuria against the white student.
The incident has led to protests on campus and the university’s postponement of examinations.
Ending racism is not just about changing attitudes; it is also about changing the material conditions that still today separate black and white South Africans. https://t.co/AviZmxQEXZ pic.twitter.com/QjBVEbtSiM
— Cyril Ramaphosa 🇿🇦 (@CyrilRamaphosa) May 23, 2022
In a firm call to action, President Cyril Ramaphosa has called for the eradication of white superiority and for Stellenbosch University to act against racism in his weekly newsletter to South Africa.
The President has decried the blatant display of racism.
Ramaphosa says it is a feature of daily life in the country, with black people bearing the brunt. He says the onus should not lie on the formerly oppressed to advance reconciliation.
“While the incident at the University of Stellenbosch may seem like an aberration – an appalling act that has been roundly condemned – the truth is that racism is still a feature of every-day life in South Africa. The sooner we recognise that reality, the sooner we can change it,” says Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa has echoed the sentiments of students at the university who have demanded transformation at the institution.
The President has called for the frank confrontation of racism and the dissection of why it continues to thrive in the country and in seeking transformation in the society in which racism is pervasive, racists must be held to account.
There are calls for transformation at the university:
Case of racism
On Tuesday [May 17], Babalo Ndwayana opened a case of housebreaking, malicious damage to property, and racism at the local police station.
The 19-year-old, AgriScience student Ndwayana said he has been left traumatised by the ordeal.
Accompanied by the South African Students Congress (SASCO), Ndwayana has opened a case against his perpetrator.
“I am still traumatised. I cannot speak on the matter. I have opened a case of housebreaking, malicious damage to property, and racism,” said Ndwayana.
Student leaders are hoping the university will use the case to take a stand against racism.
VIDEO: Students protest following Stellenbosch University racism incident: