Today's Big Stories

Draft bill on racism set to criminalise hate speech

It's difficult to separate freedom of speech from hate speech, says Nomagugu Nyathi, researcher at the Freedom of Expression Institute.

This comes after Justice Minister Michael Masutha announced that the draft legislation intended to deal with racism will also criminalise hate speech.

Nyathi explains that freedom of expression is often political comment, and politics is intrinsically linked to race issues in South Africa - making it a thorny area to navigate.

It's quite a difficult challenge, as we have seen with racist comments on social media in January and February.

Nomagugu Nyathi, researcher at the Freedom of Expression Institute.

According to Nyathi, there are effective remedies in place to address racist comments and hate speech.

If victims lay complaints to the Human Rights Commission, offenders can be charged a fine, or forced to attend diversity training or complete community service.

Despite these remedies, the public outcry for such measures to be tightened up, remains.

Listen to the full conversation from The Midday Report with Stephen Grootes:


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