'There is a higher level of empathy when it comes to white criminals'

An exclusive SABC interview with convicted rapist Nicholas Ninow’s mother created a social media frenzy on Monday with many calling it insensitive and criticising the public broadcaster for humanising a rapist.

Ninow was sentenced to life imprisonment two weeks ago for raping a seven-year-old girl at a Dros restaurant in Pretoria in 2018.

His mother, who is a recovering drug addict, admits that she took drugs with her son in the past.

RELATED: Furore over SABC interview with Nicholas Ninow's mom

Political analyst Asanda Ngoasheng speaks to Bongani Bingwa and says while society needs to understand what goes on in the minds of criminals, she is of the view that the media only humanises criminals who are white.

When black people commit crimes, we are not interested in how they ended up there, we are not interested in whether the person was unemployed or not. We are only interested in the fact that they committed the crime. We hardly see those people as anything other than just being criminals.

Asanda Ngoasheng, Political analyst

However, when it comes to white criminals, society wants to know the kind of childhood did they have, what schools did they go to and what could have caused them to deviate from the normal society, she explains.

So there is a sense that in society, white equals good. So when a white person commits a crime, it means they have deviated from our expectations. There is a higher level of empathy when it comes to white criminals.

Asanda Ngoasheng, Political analyst

Listen below to the full conversation:


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