Home NewsMiddle East Africa4Palestine welcomes SA government’s decision to withdraw support for Miss SA

Africa4Palestine welcomes SA government’s decision to withdraw support for Miss SA

by Zahid Jadwat

PRETORIA – Solidarity human rights group Africa4Palestine has welcomed the South African government’s decision to withdraw its support for Miss South Africa in the upcoming Miss Universe pageant, saying they are “thrilled” by the announcement.


Miss SA Lalela Mswane’s controversial participation in Miss Universe, scheduled to take place in the Israeli resort town of Eilat, has sparked severe backlash from local pro-Palestine groups. They have called for Miss SA to boycott the event, citing Israel’s recorded human rights abuses against Palestinians.


Speaking to Salaamedia, board member of Africa4Palestine Brian Hanekom said that the latest development has dealt a “catastrophic” blow to the Miss SA trademark. He also questioned Miss SA’s insistence on attending the event.


“The vast majority of people living in South Africa are disgraced by your attendance. [If they are] not proud of your
attendance, why would you proceed? Who are you representing?” he asked.
The government has made it clear that it will not support Mswane should she participate in the upcoming Miss Universe pageant.
Spokesperson Masechaba Khumalo said: “If anything, by withdrawing, Miss South Africa’s reputation and overall standing will be far more advanced in South Africa and internationally in comparison to a once-off event. Our preference was to try and find each other and this has regrettably been unsuccessful hence the decision by government to distance itself.”

Meanwhile, the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) criticised Minister of Arts & Culture Nathi Mthethwa for the decision and argued that he had been “noticeably absent” and being “silent about artists who appealed to him for help during the Covid lockdown”.


Julie Alli spoke to Brian Hanekom, a board member of Africa4Palestine, on News & Views. Listen to the full discussion here:

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