Some want DA’s Renaldo Gouws removed from MP list

Published Jun 17, 2024


Parliament says it is not aware of an online petition seeking to have the House remove DA member Renaldo Gouws from the list of MPs.

This comes as South Africans on social media have slammed Gouws for his various racist social media posts currently in circulation.

Just five hours after the petition went live, it had attracted more than 5 000 signatories, and by end of 24 hours, it had received more than 12 000 signatures.

Kimberly Jones, who started the petition on Sunday, said she was troubled by Gouws’s racially-motivated remarks and rhetoric.

“As a believer in democracy and an advocate for unity and inclusivity, I am deeply troubled by the actions and rhetoric of DA member, Mr Renaldo Gouws. His public utterances, filled with threats and racially charged comments are a direct affront to our democratic values and the harmony of our diverse society.

“South Africa, a nation that has been wrecked by the pain of apartheid has no place or tolerance for such divisive sentiments, particularly from a parliamentary member who ought to be a promoter of unity,” she wrote on the online platform.

In one of his videos, Gouws is heard calling ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula useless and dumb.

“Fikile Mbalula, your cadres can benefit from tenders that is why statues are being built and football teams are being sponsored. You probably know this because you negotiated when you were the minister of sports, arts and culture. This is what you encouraged, I do not know why you playing dumb.

“Since you have had this new title of secretary-general you are acting holier than thou but when you were a minister of various departments, you left them in worse conditions than you had found them. But now you are acting as if you have not done that. Be honest with yourself, you have been useless since, and now you are just playing dumb for the sake of playing dumb,” he said.

According to Jones, Gouws’s social media posts were a reminder of just how painful the country’s recent past has been to black people, who have and continue to be victims of racism, more than 30 years since the dawn of democracy.

“The recent videos of Mr Gouws circulating on social media, where he spews racial remarks against people of colour are a stark reminder of how quickly we can regress if such behaviour is left unchecked. South Africa, with its freshly adopted National Government of Unity, understands the importance of collective action towards common goals more than most,” she said.

Thuso van Zyl on X said: “Renaldo Gouws is a typical example of how the DA as a collective think. DA is a political party filled with racists, that is why they don’t have a problem appointing a self-confessed racist to Parliament. Disgusting political party.”

Jones said as the country enters a new political landscape following the recent elections, racial tolerance is of great importance, and such want Parliament to remove Gouws from his position of power.

“To enable successful governance in a diverse democratic society, it is essential that all members of Parliament adhere to principles of respect, understanding and equality. The harmful and divisive discourse propagated by Mr Gouws not only stymies our progress but can potentially inspire others in the wrong direction.

“Therefore, the Parliament of South Africa must scrutinise the membership of individuals like Mr Renaldo Gouws whose actions cause division and discord.

“We implore Parliament to reconsider the membership of Mr Renaldo Gouws and set a strong precedent against racism,” she said.

Other South Africans have also reacted to some of the videos in which Gouws spews his racially-charged rhetoric.

Responding to The Star on Monday, Parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said: “We are not aware of such a petition calling for the removal of Renaldo Gouws.”

Attempts to get comment from the DA were unsuccessful at the time of publication.

Gouws told The Star that he will not be addressing the reports of the petition over videos that were four-years old.

“I have no comment on this as there is already an article of the same video over four years ago,” he said.

The Star

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