'The word Boer could be deemed derogatory if used in a certain context'

Racial tensions and animosity are among the many social ills that form part of South Africa’s apartheid legacy.

The Constitution prohibits racism through safeguarding every person’s rights to dignity and equality.

People who publicly use derogatory words and other expressions of racism may face legal sanctions for defamation as well as criminal charges for crimen injuria.

The Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) has weighed in on the use of the word "Boer".

Recently, in the Makhanya v St Gobain (2019) the CCMA held that the word “Boer” carries similar derogatory connotations to the word “k-word” and dismissed an application for unfair dismissal that arose from an African employee’s use of the word.

To discuss the recent ruling, Refilwe Moloto chats to Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr employment practice director Michael Yeates.

It is not as simple as to just say the Boer itself is derogative or anything of the sort, it has to deal with the context in which the word is used as well as the historical connotation the word has.

Michael Yeates, Employment practice director - Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr

He says certain terms could be neutral in an ordinary context, however, when used in another context, they attract some sort of racist connotation.

In this particular matter, it involved a dispute between parties where the one individual said to another: 'You rule this place with an iron fist, you think its the time when the Boers were ruling.' In that context, that statement was termed to be racist.

Michael Yeates, Employment practice director - Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr

Listen below to the full interview:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 'The word Boer could be deemed derogatory if used in a certain context'


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
'Tweaking' your property to get the best selling price in a depressed market

'Tweaking' your property to get the best selling price in a depressed market

Expert Rowan Alexander shares tips on refreshing the exterior and interior of your home after possible neglect due to the drought.

Seriti judgment 'was a remarkable global legal precedent' - Feinstein

Seriti judgment 'was a remarkable global legal precedent' - Feinstein

Setting aside the findings of the commission into the arms deal offers an opportunity to cast the net wider says Andrew Feinstein.

Zondo Commission a 'victory' for South Africans,  says analyst

Zondo Commission a 'victory' for South Africans, says analyst

Ralph Mathekga unpacks the state capture inquiry since its commencement one year ago.

'This is not an end for Freshlyground, it is a new beginning for Zolani Mahola'

'This is not an end for Freshlyground, it is a new beginning for Zolani Mahola'

The lead singer delves into her wonderful journey with her band and why she is embarking on a solo career.

Magistrate in Catzavelos case recuses himself

Magistrate in Catzavelos case recuses himself

HRC provincial chairperson Buang Jones says Naren Sewnarain disclosed that he had previously worked for accused's lawyer.

'The last offer on the table by Bosasa was R60M. That is the price of silence'

'The last offer on the table by Bosasa was R60M. That is the price of silence'

Former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi talks to Bongani Bingwa about his state capture testimony and says he regrets using the k-word.

Popular articles
[WATCH] Here's the purported ANC letter Maimane revealed during Ramaphosa's Q&A

[WATCH] Here's the purported ANC letter Maimane revealed during Ramaphosa's Q&A

The 2014 letter on an ANC letterhead signed by then TG Zweli Mkhize thanks Bosasa's Gavin Watson for a 3 million party donation.

Blueberry production – and employment - skyrockets to all-time high

Blueberry production – and employment - skyrockets to all-time high

In 2014, 1000 people had blueberry jobs. By 2023 it could be 26 000. Bruce Whitfield interviews the industry's Sean Tager.

[WATCH] Man records every treadmill run over 8 months... and shows weight loss

[WATCH] Man records every treadmill run over 8 months... and shows weight loss

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

Standard Bank says comedy of errors with bond applicant 'a once off'

Standard Bank says comedy of errors with bond applicant 'a once off'

Only when consumer journalist Wendy Knowler chased Standard Bank did they admit wrongdoing that cost a client R41 000.

Autopsy report confirms Selahle died of unnatural causes in police custody

Autopsy report confirms Selahle died of unnatural causes in police custody

Tshegofatso Selahle died on Sunday after being arrested by JMPD officers for allegedly skipping a robot in Johannesburg.

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

Magda Wierzycka – Sygnia’s renegade CEO – on her attitude toward money (hopes and fears, successes and failures, etc.).

Former EFF MP: 'I didn't know where the money came from until it was leaked'

Former EFF MP: 'I didn't know where the money came from until it was leaked'

EFF member Tebogo Mokwele and Small Business Development Minister Khumbudzo Ntshavheni respond to leaked CR17 bank statements.

[WATCH] Father and daughter dance-off changes tune when she starts twerking

[WATCH] Father and daughter dance-off changes tune when she starts twerking

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.