5FM in hot water over anti-Israel advert

Cape Town – 5FM has issued a statement addressing complaints the radio station received after airing an advert by Faithless band member Dave Randall which calls on listeners to boycott Israel.

The controversial advert draws parallels between apartheid South Africa and the state of Israel.

In the 30-second recording, Randall says that 20 years ago he would not have performed in apartheid South Africa, and refuses to play in Israel. He then pleads with listeners to join the international boycott against Israel and pledges his support for South African Artists Against Apartheid.

Faithless also released a statement distancing themselves from the advert. The statement says that the advert reflects Randall's personal views and was aired without the band's consent or prior knowledge. Faithless, who are currently on tour in South Africa, apologised for any offence it may have caused.

Cultural boycott

Randall is a guitarist for the UK band, which is primarily comprised of musicians Maxi Jazz, Sister Bliss and Rollo Armstrong. In August 2010, Faithless declined an invite to tour Israel in protest after Israeli forces stormed a Gaza-bound aid flotilla, killing 19 people. The band joined other artists such as Pink Floyd, Elvis Costello, Carlos Santana and Gorillaz in a cultural boycott of the country.

"5FM would like to reiterate that this advert and its contents, like any advert on the station, is the property of the advertiser who has paid for it," said Aisha Mohamed, 5FM Station Manager, in a statement. "The advert does not reflect the views of 5FM or the SABC," the statement continues.

The station was unable to give an exact number of complaints received as they were submitted via e-mail, telephone and social networking platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Complaints received by 5FM will be referred to the Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa and the station will await on their decision on whether or not the advert is permissible.

5FM said that until then, they will continue to air the advert.

Watch a video clip of Dave Randall's advert calling on the boycott of Israel

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