Malema faces charges over ‘coolies’ slur

2011-11-07 08:52

Charges of crimen injuria have been laid against ANC Youth League president Julius Malema for reportedly calling Indians “coolies”, KwaZulu-Natal police said today.

Lieutenant Joey Jeevan said members of the SA Minority Rights Equality Movement laid the charges on Friday at the Mountain Rise police station in Pietermaritzburg.

The complainants were Soobramoney Narrian, Bob Narainsamy, Ashen Singh, Ashok Singh and Jaiheen Singh.

Jeevan said the case would be forwarded to the Lenasia South police station, in Gauteng, today for investigation, because the incident happened at a gathering in the area, south of Johannesburg.

Last month, opposition parties were outraged when Malema using the word “makula”, which was translated to mean “coolie”.

Malema said he had meant no offence. He also said he would not use the word again to refer to South Africans of Indian origin.

The ANC Youth League acknowledged that Malema, speaking in SeSotho, had used the phrase “bana ba lena ba tshwanetse ba dumelelwe gore ba tsene sekolo le bana ba makula mona” when addressing residents of Thembelihle.

Two daily newspapers, Business Day and The Times, translated the words as: “Your children must be allowed to go to school with coolie children.”

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