‘Sunday Times’ fires David Bullard over ‘very racist’ column

2008-04-11 00:00

Johannesburg — Sunday Times columnist David Bullard has been fired after an “extremely racist” column was published in last Sunday’s paper.

Sunday Times editor Mondli Makhanya said Bullard’s weekly column will be cancelled.

Makhanya added that Bullard, who has been employed on contract at the newspaper for 14 years, wrote a column that was “not in accordance with the character and values of the Sunday Times”.

“It’s not about censorship, but about the fact that the column was not in accordance with the values to which our country and its Constitution adhere,” Makhanya said.

The column, “Uncolonised Africa wouldn’t know what it was missing”, describes what South Africa would have been like had the “evil white man” not come “to disturb the rustic idyll of the early black settlers”.

“There are no roads because no roads are needed because there are no cars. It’s 2008 and no one has taken the slightest interest in South Africa, apart from a handful of botanists and zoologists …”

Bullard writes: “Life is, on the whole, pretty good, but there is something vital missing. Fire has been discovered and the development of the wheel is coming on nicely, but the tribal elders are still aware of some essential happiness ingredient they still need to discover.”

Then, he writes, ships and planes arrive from China, full of people wanting to exploit resources and cheap labour.

“Suddenly the indigenous population realise what they have been missing all along: someone to blame.

“At last their prayers have been answered,” the column ends.

The column elicited a lot of angry comments on the Sunday Times website, but Makhanya said the decision to fire Bullard was not influenced by outsiders.

Bullard could not be reached for comment last night.

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