“Kill the Boer” underlines racial cracks in SA


University of Johannesburg (UJ) vice-chancellor, Professor Adam Mahomed Habib

News Editor
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE controversy around the “Kill the Boer” song never seems to die down since Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader, Julius Malema, sung it for the umpteenth time at the party’s tenth anniversary celebrations.

It has sparked a racial storm after a prominent academic weighed in on the issue.

Professor Adam Mahomed Habib, University of Johannesburg (UJ) vice-chancellor in tweet, denounced the song, triggering a hornet’s nest.

“There is a lot of nonsensical defence of this (song) as being part of our liberatory cultural heritage,” he wrote.

“Singing this today is pure racial baiting. It is an attempt to make some citizens feel as if they do not belong. It’s juvenile reactionary politics at its worst & will destroy SA,” Habib said.

Habib’s comments set off a large amount of hostility on social media.

Others argued white people always reacted with anger when black people sang their liberation songs, but blacks never filed legal challenges when whites sang songs that glorified apartheid.

Henry Mdaka voiced: “Each time an African child sings a liberation song, whites catch feelings. I think it’s a sense of guilt that prompts them to feel that they are getting attacked. The constitution protects freedom of expression.”

Dership Hosanna said: “The problem is that Mandela forced us to forgive people (white) who never apologized (for their past wrongdoing).”

One Palesa vocalised: “Respectfully, it’s not part of your liberation cultural heritage. It’s ours. Former President (Thabo) Mbeki distinguished it clearly at the TRC (Truth and Reconciliation Committee). As a matter of fact, the chant is not for everyone. It doesn’t belong to everyone. And there is no obligation that it should.”

King Royalty Vukosi remarked: “It’s your (Habib) opinion. I mean it’s just a song, Not just a song, a liberation song. A song that will never bring back Solomon Mahlangu, Chris Hani, Oliver Tambo to mention a few (killed by whites). Maybe the song is healing the wounds.”

Chairman Nathi Sithole rejoined: “(The) problem with many of you (Habib) is that you are tweeting in the position of privilege and you know nothing about our struggle and therefore cannot tell us how we should do things,we can’t stop singing struggle songs just because they not comfortable to you, it’s nonsense.”

One Chrqos observed: “South Africa is still partially going through Apartheid. Land is still in the hands of pro-apartheid groups (whites).”

Tumelo_Morara fumed: “You (Habib) say some ‘citizens’ feel as if they don’t belong, yet ‘majority’ citizens (blacks) are economically excluded and landless……the chant remains relevant until the socio-economic imbalance and the land issues are resolved.”

Nhloso Kho said: “Unfortunately black people don’t need your permission to sing any song they like. Feelings are irrelevant here until the land is owned by the rightful owners (blacks). Our ancestors and forefathers were robbed of their land. Such songs kept them focused on the true enemy.”

An EFF activist reacted: “EFF is not looking for approval from seasonal racists like Habib, it doesn’t matter how much you twerk. Your not influential EFF will still grow every election the party knows its target market very well. These have been too comfortable.”

However, one called Lizzi King differed with the majority saying she felt uncomfortable living in South Africa insisting she wants to leave the country immediately.

“We want to leave. Can someone please speak to Europe and ask them to take us. People of this country can’t understand international travel law. They tell us to go but we can’t leave . Visas are a thing,” Lizzi said.

Last week, the main opposition Democratic ALliance (DA) said it would file charges against Malema and the government at the United Nations Human Rights Commission.

They, like Afriforum, are accused of protecting white interests.

Singing of the “Kill the Boer”, seen as a call to kill white farmers, has previously been outlawed but in 2022, the Constitutional Court dismissed an Afriforum complaint and accepted Malema’s argument that the lyrics should not be interpreted literally but in their proper historical context as a statement of resistance to land dispossession.

– CAJ News




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