South Africans condemn racist video filmed by white students

February 28th, 2008 - 11:32 pm ICT by admin  

Johannesburg, Feb 28 (DPA) South African media and citizens reacted strongly Thursday to a racist video showing white students at a university humiliating black workers, including serving them food in which a student had urinated. “They urinate on the Rainbow Nation,” the Citizen newspaper, popular among white readers, said in an editorial, describing the video made by students at the Bloemfontein campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) as “sick, disgusting and depraved”.

The Sowetan newspaper said the footage was proof that “apartheid, especially in the Free State, is still alive and thriving”.

The video, which surfaced Tuesday, was recorded by a group of white male students in September, in reaction to moves by the university to create multiracial student hostels.

In the video a student is seen urinating on a bowl of meat stew to hoots of laughter from his friends in the background before serving it to five unsuspecting cleaning staff - four women and a man - kneeling on the ground.

The workers were also given alcohol to drink, made to run a race and play rugby in the video entitled Integrasie, which pretends to simulate integration.

Students at the men’s hostel behind the video said Thursday they had received death threats over the video which sparked a protest march of hundreds of staff, students and workers at the campus Wednesday, SAfm public radio reported.

The university said it had instructed its attorneys to lay criminal charges against the four students, two of whom have already completed their studies at UFS.

The other two have been barred from campus pending the outcome of an internal investigation.

UFS rector Frederick Fourie has admitted the university in the notoriously conservative province is “going through a difficult time” with instituting multiracial accommodation.

Students at the university last week rioted over the issue, causing millions of rands in damage.

South Africa’s Human Rights Commission has announced an investigation into the video as well as other alleged racist incidents at the campus.

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