Mohamed Ameen Dabhelia - 2016-08-31
There is growing anger over the appointment of new MMC for Finance in the City of Johannesburg, Rabelani Dagada, who is accused of making pro-Israeli statements after a recent trip to Israel.
Both the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement in South Africa and the African National Congress (ANC) in Johannesburg have expressed concern at newly appointed Democratic Alliance (DA) mayor, Herman Mashaba’s choice of Dagada as MMC for finance in the City of Joburg.
According to a press statement released by the ANC’s Joburg Secretary General Dada Morero, Dagada shared a view “that he does not consider Israel an apartheid state” after a visit to Israel.
Mayor Mashaba told Radio Islam in response to the allegations, that ‘his party’s role is to look after Johannesburg and they do not have the competency to comment on international matters.’
BDS South Africa’s Muhammad Desai spoke to Radio Islam’s Ml Sulaimaan Ravat on Sabahul Muslim this morning where he raised two concerns in relation to Dagada.
‘One being the party that he represents and secondly and more specific, that of Rabelani himself.’
The response from Mashaba on international politics and ability to judge a politician in delivering services purely on what their view is pertaining to Palestine has been described as 'demobilising' by Desai.
“We want our politicians to be doing many things, demanding them to on the one hand driving local issues, and at the same time lending solidarity on our behalf to international issues.”
Desai added that Mashaba’s decision was hypocritical and concerning.
He explained that this comes from a history where people in an international community – mayors and other public representatives – spoke out during the seventies and eighties on behalf of black South Africans.
ANC spokesperson Jolidee Matango told Radio Islam’s Mufti Yusuf Moosagie that Mashaba’s appointment of Dagada was an insult.
“The man is pro-Israeli, which for us is a problem, the Israel/Palestine problem needs to be solved, we can’t shy away from the fact of Israel’s wrongdoings.”
Matango says Mashaba needs to rethink Dagada’s position.
“If we have such a person holding a very senior position in government, appointed by the executive mayor, we think that Dagada’s position in a metropolitan and economic hub of Africa be rethought.”
Dagada initially agreed to an interview on Radio Islam this morning, however, he later declined saying in a text message that ‘after careful consideration, I have decided not to participate in the interview tomorrow morning”.
(Edited by Hesley Harmse)