Johannesburg – CAGE Africa notes the disturbing trend in the media to label Sallahuddin (Brandon-Lee) and Yakeen (Tony-Lee) Thulsie (who face charges in terms of South Africa’s terrorism act POCDATARA) as “terror twins”.
Not only is this appellation inflammatory, pejorative and defamatory, it displays an alarming insensitivity to the rights of accused persons and contributes to creating a climate of fear and suspicion.
CAGE Africa furthermore calls for the media to respect the family’s privacy at this time. CAGE Africa is representing the family of the twins.
Karen Jayes, spokesperson for CAGE Africa, said:
“South Africa must appreciate from its own past that the term ‘terrorist’ is often selectively applied for ulterior purpose. Using this term loosely and prior to any conviction violates the twins’ constitutional rights and offends the principle that an accused is innocent until proven guilty.”
“Last week, two AWB men were arrested with between them 11 rifles, 2 shotguns, 2 pistols and around 2400 rounds of ammunition. They were not labelled terrorists.”
“Labeling is problematic per se. It is all the more dangerous when used selectively against a group or sector of the community. We reiterate that anti-terror legislation should not be used selectively against Muslims.”
“CAGE Africa calls for full disclosure of the evidence against Sallahuddin and Yakeen, and the manner in which it was obtained, as well as transparency and adherence to the rule of law.”
(Image courtesy of Thulsie family)
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(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)