Christian public holidays under scrutiny

2012-06-11 09:31

Johannesburg - The revision of public holidays, in particular Christian public holidays, will be a topic of discussion at public meetings arranged by the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities later in June, Beeld reported on Monday.

The public discussion meetings will take place in Gauteng, the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State, according to a statement from the commission.

A number of "complaints and requests" have been received by the commission, concerning the fact that SA's public holidays only acknowledge Christianity and discriminate unfairly against other religions, the newspaper reported.

"According to its mandate, we received a number of complaints concerning the biased and unfair scheduling of the Public Holidays Act 36 of 1994," the commission said in a statement.

The aim of the meetings is to encourage public participation and collate information to determine whether the current situation is discriminatory.

People wanting to make submissions should call 011-537-7600 or see information posted on

  • Koos - 2012-06-11 09:39

    OOOOOooo more days off... Nice.

      Squeegee - 2012-06-11 10:02

      Christmas in South Africa is closely linked to the academic year and school holidays. Taking away Christian holidays will not hurt the faith. Anyway Christmas and Easter are so abused by non-believers who use it as an excuse to do business, drink, etc.

      eil33nn - 2012-06-11 10:07

      My employer gives the Jewish, Hindu and Muslim workers 3 extra days during the year for religious leave. I think that is unfair cause they get my 3days a year off too!

      Squeegee - 2012-06-11 10:22

      Just a question... Would you rather celebrate the birth of Jesus or Zipper Zuma? Don't be fooled into thinking there will be less holidays - just the names will change and there will be more reason to spend taxpayers money.

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 11:32

      That's true eil33nn, and they muslims's get a whole week for Eid, plus xtian holidays. They are REALLY lucky

      Benn - 2012-06-11 12:02

      Shame, and what about the atheists public holiday? APRIL 1?

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 12:38


      Konstabel - 2012-06-11 12:40

      The only religious holidays that are left are Christmas and Easter. So any debate about this is just a waste of time. There is no way that all religions could be accommodated as we would end up with too many holidays.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-06-11 13:18

      So Squeegee, it's only non-believers who abuse Christmas? Pffft... whatever.

      Greg - 2012-06-11 13:39

      80% South Africans are Christian. Majority rules. We do need to be cognisant of minority cultural and religious days. Suggest including cultural/religious paid leave days for the minority groups. But what happens when a Christian owned business closes for the holy days?? Do the minority groups take unpaid leave and the Christians get paid leave? I say let the majority / global rule apply. There is an agenda here being driven by ...... ???

      eugene.meyer1980 - 2012-06-11 14:34

      There wont be more holidays. Some Christian holidays will get canned to make place for other holidays. The problem we have here is that SA is trying to accommodate EVERYONE. This is a Christian country, and should stay a Christian country. Can you imagine if Christians in other countries where Muslim, Hindu, or any other religion is the majority had to start asking for Christmas, or Easter to be recognized as public holidays??? Im not saying we should treat this as a tit for tat, but a line needs to be drawn as well. Like Aus said, its a free country where everyone has their rights, and if someone does not like it there, they can exercise their right to leave.

      Adriaan - 2012-06-11 16:16

      @kyle.schultz.89 Just Google South African Religious Demographics, you should get a few reputable sources. Otherwise if you don't believe them use Google Scholar to source it. It should be over 65% as the last official figure was 2001 at 79.8% Christian. Im my knowledge anything above 2/3's is a majority.

      Fussed - 2012-06-12 04:08

      At this rate there is going to be too many holidays and no time to take my leave due to me

      mikeeka - 2012-06-12 10:09

      @Wesley Bischoff - '...muslim's get a whole week for Eid' ??? This, I know, is a fabrication.

      yazeed.khan1 - 2012-06-12 10:46

      To make things fair I would suggest you scrap all religoius holidays and give people 3 days off during the year to celebrate what ever they wish too?

      boeretroos.redakteur - 2012-06-12 15:24

      OK - So conjure up 2 consecutive days proclaime it as a holiday and call it .. Your Day. No work no pay though.

      Denise - 2012-06-13 01:19

      You can take away Christian public holidays but next year when millions sing & dance until midnight to countdown as the world ushers in the new year remember you can't take this away... The AD/BC aspect of the current calendar we use globally is not accidental or insignificant. A distinction between periods of time historically was decided on many years ago. A historical event of world significance was used as the line drawn in the sand... So next year when the midnight ball drops in New York and fireworks fly over Sydney Harbour. In New Zealand, South Pacific islands, Europe, Greeks, Irish Spaniards, cities across Asia, along Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour, Tokyo, even communist Vietnam as hundreds of thousands of people gather to celebrate remember this... 2013 years ago, in the Middle East, an event occurred that permanently changed the world. Because of that event history was split. Every time you write the date you are forced to acknowledge that Jesus has influenced the course of history more than any man. The birth of Christ utterly altered the way we measure time. He turned aside the river of the ages out of its course and lifted the centuries off their hinges. His birth and death are the markers by which most of the world measures time. Now, the whole world counts time as before Christ (BC) and AD (Anno Domini), in the year of the Lord.

  • Barry - 2012-06-11 09:43

    As a Christian I wouldn't mind taking my holidays as the other religions do. Many would probably claim to be Christian over Easter & Christmas holidays, it might end up being very good for the advancement of the faith!

      zaatheist - 2012-06-11 10:43

      I think we should cancel all public holidays, religious or otherwise and give everyone an extra 7 days leave a year to be taken as single days whenever they want. This will allow anyone who does not want to work for religious reasons to take the day off. It will help reduce the frightful road carnage over long weekend when everyone takes the day off.

      Hugo - 2012-06-11 11:59

      how about schools and universities

      Matt - 2012-06-11 12:48

      @necro & ryno, what's with you guys and the bullying? Is it absolutely necessary? Your opinion is noted but that doesn't give you the right to make fun of someone else's, regardless of whether you think it is rubbish or a pot of gold. You just sound like a bunch of grown up high school bullies with nothing better to do. Besides, mockery never got anyone to change, leading by example did.

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-11 14:16

      zaatheist, then the labpour laws would have to be changed to ensure employers do give the extra days. I do not see them doing it willingly. FYI, in SA there is carnage on the roads EVERY day. Bad driving is the problem, not a public holiday.

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-11 14:16

      @ryno, so did you!

      phillip.havenga - 2012-06-11 15:31

      Oh Necro and Ryno such big words you are using careful your tiny little heads don't explode!

      Schmee - 2012-06-12 08:51

      @OzzylnSA the carnage over long weekends is much worse than over normal weekends because there are far more cars on the road. And who would not be willing to change the labour laws? It makes perfect business sense to rather give employees extra leave but keep your business open. And the government is already looking into making major changes to everyone’s lives it’s not going to take much extra effort to change the labour law.

  • Antipoaching - 2012-06-11 09:44

    Do we not claim to be a Christian country? If so then surely Christian holidays should dominate?

      Mike - 2012-06-11 09:49

      We are a constitutional democracy and a secular state!

      Lacrimose - 2012-06-11 09:51

      No we are a secular State with freedom of religion guaranteed under the Constitution - 2012-06-11 09:53

      @ Daniel - could've fooled me.

      alan.gernet - 2012-06-11 10:10

      Well - looking at the aganda's and doings of some of our leaders - we are very far removed from Christianinty. Anyway - it's all just a name - if they want to call Christmas something else like Spear Day, I will still use the day to worship Christ. So let the maaifoedies do what they want to - I can put my own connotation on any public holiday that I want to, as can anybody else.

      Kala - 2012-06-11 10:21

      I'd say we're getting further and further away from a democracy too.

      Martin - 2012-06-11 10:32

      church and state are separate. I take my own holidays as well as the christian holidays, to me they are days off that i get paid for, Easter and xmas have absolutely no meaning at all to me. give everyone their public holidays, thats fair in a democracy, il keep running while xtians frolic at the beach, and on my holidays they will keep things running while i frolic, Muslims probably dont mind filling in when its their turn and it will all work tip top at the end of the day, business will cease to close if everyone gets their share.

      elize12 - 2012-06-11 11:05

      @Phae - I suppose you are fair and does not take the "Christian holidays" off or accept christmas presents neither do you give presents or accept double pay for working on those days?

      Dee - 2012-06-11 11:24

      Surely the debate should have more to do with our major international trading & stock exchange calendars? Easter / Yom Kippur, Xmas, Chinese New Year, Diwali(?), Eid .... that should accommodate most SA religions - and then add just a few 'cultural' events.

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 11:33

      Like christians dominate everything else?

      thebutler23 - 2012-06-11 12:07

      you're so right Zama, people should open their eyes and check out what the real agenda is here, we can celebrate our faith any day, and everyday, and we do, yes, but that is not the issue here, the issue is obliterating believe in the One True YHVH God, the God of Abrahamm Isaac and Jacob and His Son, Yeshua/Jesus. PEople do not want anything to do with Him because He exacts everything from us, our very lives since He gave His for us, by the way Martin, it is too late, He has already accomplished it all for you whether you like it or not! His mercy and forgiveness is available to all who will receive Him. Sorry guys, there is nothing you can do to change THAT! Don't end up being people who only qualify for 1st April.... it is your choice!

      ian.d.samson - 2012-06-11 12:37

      @thebutler23 The "real agenda" here is to remove all forms of Christianity from the country to make room for Shar'ia Law to take over, and take its place. That's the "real agenda". The Islamification of the Western World is what every Muslim wants and works towards. Don't be fooled, it's been prophesied that this will happen; the great apostasy.

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 12:39

      Qualify? Right there is a perfect example of how (most) christians look down on others, and think they are more privileged than others. Get over yourself.

      kyle.schultz.89 - 2012-06-11 15:30

      We claim to be a secular state, please join the modern world

      TheGoat - 2012-06-12 07:48

      @ Ian: Wow dude, your are seriously cracked. Your probably the kind of nutter who supports that Norwegian mass murderer coz the "evil islam" is coming to take over your world. Please get a brain and then a life.

      TheGoat - 2012-06-12 07:51

      @Henning: No sorry you fail. Theyre all secular states. Adamantly so as well. The fact that they are secular accounts for the high levels of freedom to be stupid and thus the continued existence of religions.

      Schmee - 2012-06-12 08:52

      Well Zuma did say the ANC will rule until Jesus comes.

      Sharon - 2012-06-12 17:39

      this is africa lets take african hollidays,300 days leave 65 days working and a 25%increase every 6 months

  • selma.botha.9 - 2012-06-11 09:48

    Cancel Youth Day, Womens Day, Human Rights Day, Heritage Day, Workers Day and Reconcilliation Day. Muslim and Jewish business benefit financially from Easter Weekend and Christmas.

      Allen - 2012-06-11 10:58

      Jewish and Muslim businesses sing the same tune at Christmas time:- (Altogether now, from the top) "What a friend we have in Jesus.. "

      naeem.padia - 2012-06-12 12:12

      @ Selma & Allen: How is it that Muslim & Jewish businesses benefit? There is a difference between a Muslim/Jewish business & one that is Muslim/Jewish owned. Last I checked most of the big chain stores also jump on the Hanukkah, Diwali & Eid band-wagons. I don't feel offend that these establishments might be Christian, Hindu or Atheist owned. Its called free-trade & it shows that they identify & accept diversity. Also, if an organization decides to allow certain religious minorities to have a day or two off for their religious celebrations, I commend them for their understanding towards the needs of these individuals, even if it's unpaid leave. Its not a competition to see who gets the most day's off...

  • Phae - 2012-06-11 09:50

    Its about time! Everyone should all get 3 days off a year to allow them to follow their chosen philosophies, so that the entire country does not come to a stand still for each others beliefs. Its time Christianty learned there are other people with their own thoughts and rights. I want three days to sit in nature and marvel evolution.

      Emily-Jane Elson - 2012-06-11 09:53

      Hey Relax! I'm Catholic and have NO problems with others beliefs!! It's just never been revised and thats nobodys fault but theirs!! They will sit down and do it and Bobs your uncle. No point getting so worked up..

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 11:38

      I agree

      John - 2012-06-11 17:29

      Rock on, boet!

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-12 01:15

      Ok, Phae, so we will work in SA over Easter and Christmas while the majority of the rest of the world i son holiday. So who, do we do business with on those days? How much will that cost the economy? By your thought, as a Christian I lose 4 days in Holidays (even though these are Pagan holidays, not Christian), how are you going to guarantee that I still get these 4 days as paid leave?

      ape.inleathers - 2012-06-26 20:55

      You Must be an atheist, that is fine but don't dictate to Christians! Do you not know the Constitutional Rights?

  • Kala - 2012-06-11 09:53

    The Muslims get time off for their holidays as do the Hindus, Jews and other faiths. Yet they all get time off for the christian holdays too. Each faith should be entitled to days off for their specific holidays and scrap them as public holidays. The atheists will have to devise some kind of celebration to ensure that we are not left out. Beer Day, Beach Day, Braai day are a couple of suggestions.

      Nosiphom - 2012-06-11 09:59

      Exactly Kala, we should also be creative otherwise we lose out!

      Kala - 2012-06-11 10:13

      LOL @ Squeegee.

      lindaawhelan - 2012-06-11 10:33

      Darwin Day? The suggestion of three days per year for "spiritual observance" is a good one. It also means that childless atheists can take their days out of season, putting less pressure on the roads and benefiting the tourism industry in off peak times. For most of us, school holidays dictate when we take leave so there won't be much change.

      Martin - 2012-06-11 10:53

      I celebrated Lindisfarne day last friday, Praise Odin

      samantha.5243 - 2012-06-11 10:58

      @ Kala, I need to correct you, Hindhu's do not get a public holiday for our religious days, like Diwali for example, we have to take it as part of our annual leave, it would be nice to have it as a public holiday then everyone can have that day off too whether you celebrate or not, just like how everyone has christmas off-

      Dakey - 2012-06-11 11:05

      I would seriously respect atheists that did not take religious public holidays off, instead worked on those days. You know, lead by example and all, while the rest of us took those days off. Of course they should be remunerated for their time no doubt, but no they should not take off time from work like the rest of us. What would Stalin or Mussolini do if the were still alive? I don't think they'd stand for these religious holidays.

      alan.gernet - 2012-06-11 11:24

      sad but true, Squeegee!!

      Martin - 2012-06-11 11:26

      Dakeyras I would gladly work on the said public holidays, cept my boss is xtian and closes shop, there is no way around it, and that goes for alot of people in construction and engineering, we dont get the choice to ignore the public holiday. the system must change to allow it otherwise we all take our public holidays of with our annual leave, my leave is pretty much chowed by forced closure for xmas holidays.

      Dakey - 2012-06-12 12:27

      @Martin, I hardly think your boss (and the rest of the industry) close shop because they take religious holidays seriously. More likely they close shop because it coincides with school holidays and the industry in general. Harsh reality is that there would not be enough churches to facilitate 5% of the population on Christmas day if everyone took the day off because of 'religious' reasons. Most folk go away during the Easter holidays, they don't stay at home because of Easter service. Let's be somewhat realistic, the vast majority of us don't take any of the holidays seriously, its simply a day to remember 'whatever' and chill out with family.

  • Thermophage - 2012-06-11 09:53

    This is very true. They do favor only Ztian public holidays. I am in no way religious, but that is really unfair. However...we can't acknowledge ALL religions holidays either... This is going to be a tough one to be fair on.

      Thermophage - 2012-06-11 09:54

      Ztian=Xtian :P

      Martin - 2012-06-11 10:33

      we must acknowledge all or none.

      Thermophage - 2012-06-11 12:55

      @Martin, agreed...Unfortunately though as I like public holidays :P

      Martin - 2012-06-11 13:52

      thermo, im with you there, im not this economy's slave, there are workaholics for that. i got better things to do than support my bosses maserati habit, like sleep, and eat cake, and paint spears and do other odd things that i cannot do otherwise.

      Dakey - 2012-06-12 12:39

      As much as you like to deny it, your moral compass is so entrenched in Judeo-Christian values that it doesn't actually make sense to incorporate all religions. Perhaps like India, we could abort all children once we discover they are girls? Perhaps like China we could have forced abortions for any couple expecting their 2nd child? Perhaps we could incorporate some of the Zulu traditions and hold mock battles where soldiers were killed? Goodness be thankful to the one and only God that you don't live in any of these societies where you actually believe raping a virgin will cure you of HIV! Rather go and DO SOMETHING about these issues in rural areas and help these people than post on News24. Last I checked there weren't too many atheist sponsored soup kitchens trying to feed those that have nothing. Perhaps you can start one?

  • miyo27 - 2012-06-11 09:53

    Christian holidays discriminate unfairly against other religions?? WHAT? Last time I checked ALL Christian holidays were NATIONAL PUBLIC HOLIDAYS. How the f*ck does this discriminate? Example - Christmas and Easter are national holidays for all. Diwali is a holiday for only Hindus. YOu don't see Catholics taking off work to celebrate Diwali. So please do explain how Chritian holidays discrimuinate against other religions. Of that's the case then Easter and Christmas day should only be a holiday for Christians. I am so sick and tired of double standards in this country between the various races and religions. Make up your mind on who and what you are and then shut up and sit down. Finished and klaar!

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:01

      The point is that these Christian festivals are mandated as public holidays. Some would rather work over Easter and choose when they would like to take leave.

      zaatheist - 2012-06-11 10:45

      @BobbyM Absolutely. I want my days off when the all the Christians are running around like lemmings.

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:23

      @Miyo. You dufus, the christain holidays are public holidays (that means we all get paid while on leave). The other religions have to take their special days as annual leave. THATS DISCRIMINATION. the problem is that christians are so used to lording it over everyone they forget that we don't all believe in their god!

      Emile - 2012-06-12 02:34

      yeah you got the wrong idea on this one buddy, and ur super pissy about it too. you may wanna see a doctor about that sa has two types of public holidays. politically motivated and religious. unfortunately the religious ones only cater to christianity. that is discriminatory, no two ways about it.

  • Freddie - 2012-06-11 09:54

    So are the Jews and Muslims going to work over Christmas and Easter?

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 09:59

      They will when those days are no longer public holidays and you have to put in leave

      Narwahl - 2012-06-11 10:21

      FYI there are Muslims that work on these holidays.

      samantha.5243 - 2012-06-11 10:59

      why would they need to work if it's a PUBLIC HOLIDAY!

      Freddie - 2012-06-11 11:08

      Narwahl, I am not talking about self employed businessman or those who claim double time for doing so. People of all persuations work on these days at the moment.

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-12 01:17

      Narwahl, can I take off 4 hours every Friday just because you Muslims do?

      naeem.padia - 2012-06-12 13:15

      @ Freddie: Stop being so ignorant! In SA as an employee you are entitled to several leave days per year, most companies allow their staff to celebrate religious holidays as unpaid un-paid leave & if its paid leave, well, lucky them. @ OzzyInSA: 4 hours? Either you can't keep time or that's one lucky guy! Last I checked, you only needed an hour, which is the amount of time most people take for lunch anyways. Instead of hating, raise the issue with your employer & take "4 hours" this Friday afternoon... Don't hate the prayer! :P

  • mary.sadler.35 - 2012-06-11 09:57

    Easter weekend should definitely be abolished, Good Friday has no meaning except being the start of a mini-holiday for most of the population and that extra Monday only causes more deaths on the road and wreaks havoc with the economy. Personally I'd like December 25th to stay though, in keeping with the rest of the civilised world.

      Kathleen - 2012-06-11 10:17

      @mary.sadler.35 - Good Friday is the most sacred day in the Christian calendar. It is a day when Christians spend three hours in church contemplating on what Christ has done for us through his sacrifice. That sacrifice was also done for you, mary.sadler

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:27

      Kathleen you know that you can contemplate this any day of the year (or every day if you want to be devout). Why should an entire country come to a standstill because of the religious beliefs of one group of people?

      Stuka - 2012-06-11 10:44

      @Kathleen. if we as Christians only use public holidays and Sundays as a time to contemplate about what Christ did for us what are you doing the the rest of the week, bit fake the arent you? They can take away the public holiday, they can never take away the day we celebrate as the day that Christ died for us. What Mary is suggesting might not be a idea at all, for most so called Christians Easter Weekend is one huge drunk holiday anyway...

      mary.sadler.35 - 2012-06-11 10:55

      Kathleen, religion is in your heart and does not have to be flaunted on public holidays. No-one will stop devout Christians gathered in God's name from contemplating on Good Friday, if such were the case Judaism, Buddhism, Islam and all the other religions would not have survived for so long. And anyway, it does seem a bit silly to make so much of an arbitrary day which is not the true date of the Crucifixion but a concession to ancient rituals.

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:26

      @Kathleen. No my dear, no sacrifice was made for me. he is YOUR god and that is YOUR belief. that DOES NOT mean it is the only correct one. Jewish people have a "most sacred day" too, as do all other beliefs. Why should they have to take leave and you don't? Stop thinking christians are so special and always right! Its that arrogance that makes people angry with you lot.

      merven.halo - 2012-06-11 12:46

      Agree with Wesley Bischoff,and if he was really the son of God, he knew that he would get up from the dead, so he did not pay with his life. Sacrificing yourself knowing that you won't stay dead is like cutting your nails for someone. You know it will grow out again. - 2012-06-11 12:59

      Nooit. I get Easter Eggs on that weekend!

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 13:31

      @Merven Brilliant example!!! It's so true!

      benn.sadie - 2012-06-11 19:16

      Wesley- Did you donate your brain to your boy friend?

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-12 00:52

      Kathleen, you do know that Jesus was not born on December 25th, nor did he die on "Good Friday"? You do know these are Pagan, not Christian dates? You do know that Jesus asked us to remeber him ONLY on Nisan 14?

      TheGoat - 2012-06-12 08:06

      @Ben: Is that meant to insult him with a reference to him being homosexual? Shhhhhhh be careful, your bigotry is showing. Retard.

  • Nosiphom - 2012-06-11 09:58

    We have major economic issues, but unfortunately we have the tendency to be obsessed with issues that do not move the country forward. We already have many holidays, we should not entertaining adding more holidays in order to accommodate every conceivable situation. Next we will have the people who believe in indigenous religions also coming to make a claim and we will end with the whole calender made up of holidays!

      Kala - 2012-06-11 10:31

      @Nosiphom - Which would make for a handy ANC pre election promise. More Holidays, Less work. Not that they can do any less work.

  • jannie.debeer - 2012-06-11 09:59

    "Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika" ("Lord Bless Africa" in Xhosa), was originally composed as a hymn in 1897 by Enoch Sontonga, a teacher at a Methodist mission school in Johannesburg. Please explain the duality of the thinking here. I have no problem with changing the public holidays, but make up your minds. It is a Christian country, I respect that, even though I may not be one of the followers of this doctrine.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:13

      Sorry to burst your bubble but Christians aren't the only ones to believe in God. You just believe that you have a different God to everyone else.

      altusvanzyl - 2012-06-11 11:02

      There is only one God. Jesus Christ. So please dude.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:11

      Altus, until you can prove this to everyone else on earth, your point is...pointless. I choose not to hate anyone because they have different beliefs to me. I don't judge, lest I be judged. I live my life and let others live theirs. You are demanding that you receive special treatment because YOU are convinced that YOU are worshiping the right God.

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:30

      @Altus(whatever) You see, there is that arrogance again. I don't believe in your god, you have not provided any proof, neither has any other religion. Leave me to believe as i do and stop trying to push your beliefs onto me. to quote a friend "He's your god, you go to hell"

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:31

      @BobbyM. Well said!

      merven.halo - 2012-06-11 12:48

      @altusvanzyl - and so is there only one god for the Muslims also, what is your point?

      benn.sadie - 2012-06-11 19:18

      Wesley, if I were you, I would keep your stupidity confidential

      OzzyIn - 2012-06-12 00:54

      @altus, Jeus is not God. Read your Bible and find out. Do not believe in Church doctrines. The "truth" is in the Bible.

      Bobby - 2012-06-12 07:48

      @Ozzie - My Bible confirms the diety of JESUS. Thomas worshipped HIM, HE said before Abraham was I AM. The Book of Revelations records HIM as saying that HE is the Aleph Tav (Alpha and Omega). HE is glorified. HE is called Wonderful, COuncillor, Mighty GOD. and there is more. I am convinced that JESUS is GOD. a lot of people argue that HE is man because HE is called the Son of Man. This arguement is not worng. Therefore HE is GOD because HE is called the SON of GOD. HE is fully man and fully GOD. Church Doctrine must always be tested by what the Bible teaches. If the DOctrine is verified by the Bible, then the doctrine is valid and necessary. GOD BLess you.

  • James - 2012-06-11 10:02

    It would be awesome if we cancelled all public holidays as they stand, and just give people of South Africa this in additional leave. Then people(of whatever religious orientation/or lack of) could be satisfied. 20 days + 12 days, i declare a win.

  • Francois - 2012-06-11 10:05

    Maybe you should only get the day off if you can bring a note from church.

      James - 2012-06-11 10:07

      Yeah and give the church an opportunity to make some money on the side!

      Martin - 2012-06-11 10:35

      james they beg for more than enough, pasor ray doesnt need a new caravan, or private jet, he needs some frikkin humility

      James - 2012-06-11 11:23

      @Martin, i was being sarcastic. I was pointing out the fact that the church could make a killing on corrupt dealings as Francios proposes

      Martin - 2012-06-11 11:32

      james im on your side, lol i was just adding to your really good point

  • Fredster - 2012-06-11 10:09

    ...and you wonder why things go the way they go in our country

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 13:00


  • Peter - 2012-06-11 10:10

    Wow, Atheists really have their knives out for the Christians. Can't open a website or magazine these days without reading anti-Christian rhetoric. Feel the love.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:15

      It's called freedom of choice and freedom of speech. Some people would like to be free to question the universe and life and everything in it. You are the one taking this personally as an attack on you and your beliefs.

      KingPro - 2012-06-11 10:40

      Get your head out of your *ss you Bible bashing nutter... This has nothing to do with Atheists and everything to do with other religion's holidays being recognised. What they're saying is that other religions such as Islam, Judaism, Buddism and so forth also need their religious holidays recognised. I really wish people would think before spewing out the drivel that they do on the internet...

      Peter - 2012-06-11 10:59

      You just proved my point KingPro.

  • brionyl.french - 2012-06-11 10:11

    when one tries to please all people they get no where....

  • Kathleen - 2012-06-11 10:17

    At a certain hospital in Durban my daughter-in-law always had to work over Christmas and Easter, despite being a Christian, because the Hindus had beat her to putting in their leave over those periods.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:23

      People are entitled to take their leave whenever they want, regardless of their religion. Why didn't she apply earlier?

      Martin - 2012-06-11 10:36

      you snooze you looze

      TheGoat - 2012-06-12 08:16

      And your point is? YES, Damn those sneaky Hindus! They were smarter than my daughter-in-law and applied for leave first!..... not a very good christian and christmas and easter cant be that important if you didnt put in your leave ASAP hey? LOL

  • pieceful - 2012-06-11 10:21

    I kinda agree with squeegee. everything's built around it. so my suggestion would be to simply change the names of those specific holidays. give them non-religious names. its all semantics

  • hudayfah.newman - 2012-06-11 10:25

    no more easter? :( i'm not xtian but we usually have plans for that time of the year.

  • eyesears.handsfeet - 2012-06-11 10:27

    All public holidays must be scrapped as none of them means anything anymore anyway. We celebrate what is important to ourselves that has nothing to do with the rest of the population or the world. No one will ever be pleased / happy with anything that are being put in front of them. That is the way of life and something called so-called diversity!

  • Winifred - 2012-06-11 10:28

    I dont care, they can take away xmas because most people just use it as extravagance anyway. Maybe it might help them save a bit on their credit cards. Easter week-end is always the weekend their are so many deaths on the road, so that can also go. Everything is being taken away so we may as well make up our minds that this will be the start and definetly wont be the last. I am already suffering from post political stress so who cares anymore.

  • pieceful - 2012-06-11 10:32

    In response to Kala,about scrapping all religious public holidays and giving each faith/other their respective time off. I see what you're saying, but it would be a logistical nightmare. Islamic religious days change every year as they are calculated on the phases of the moon. I'm sure the same can be said about various other faiths, though possibly for different reasons. Its a tricky situation. My suggestion would be leave the holidays as they are now, name them something else. Then, legislature should be drafted to the effect that as a basic condition of employment, we would receive 3 days per annum for religious holidays, as we would have sick leave and annual leave? Fair compromise?

  • Keegsvb - 2012-06-11 10:32

    This country has a history of being a Christian country, we don't go to middle east or asia and where ever and start complaining about how the religeous situation is so one sided there, if you don't like it, maybe you should consider taking a hike!!

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:53

      lol your ignorance is astounding.

      pieceful - 2012-06-11 12:03

      are you crazy? one word: crusades

      Pastor - 2012-06-11 14:55

      This country also has a history of being a totalitarian state. The only thing you are against is progress. If you want to live in a theocracy, you take a hike. This is a secular country now.

      RangoAndEmy - 2012-06-11 18:38

      well said BobbyM,pieceful and pastor this IS a Secular country and that means away with Religion all of it...

      Phae - 2012-06-12 11:38

      Historically it was the hell hole for apartheid as well, but we don't want that back either. Anyway this is getting complicated, I'm not sure who doesn't want me in my own country anymore, angry Xtians or Africans. Could you perhaps wear different coloured armbands for identification purposes? Thanks, it would help enormously during confrontations.

  • Linde.Olaf - 2012-06-11 10:35

    I want all the other religion holidays as well....what counts for counts for all :).

  • dhavandran.palavar - 2012-06-11 10:37

    as a hindus we respect all faiths because we are all embracing. if the govt wants to end discrimination regarding religious holidays then lets separate the the holidays according to the different this way we will have more productivity as there will always be people at work on any given religious holiday. the economy will benefit. i know this will affect the school holidays but we will have to find a common path.we have always benefited from the christian holidays and all our planning have been around these holidays. if those who are religious intolerant and want separate holidays then it goes against your religious teachings about accepting that god is one. all rivers eventually flow into the sea no matter which path it takes.

  • H9005 - 2012-06-11 10:39

    I don't see why there is a need to look at public holidays in terms of religion. If you rather want to work because you're not of a certain faith, etc then arrange with your boss to work on that day and take your religious day off - as it is there are many companies who allow an extra 2 days a year for people to take religious days (some Christians I know take ascension day off using this, so everyone can benefit.) The only thing that needs to be done about public holidays is to be flexible with the non-religious holidays that occur tues/wed/thurs. They should rather make those on the monday/friday closest - this will give the people the day off, allow for a short trip (long weekend) and at the same time hurt the economy a little less from the point of view of mid-week disruptions which adversely affect lots of factories. For example: it wouldn't hurt to have celebrated Human Rights day on Friday 23rd or Monday 19th instead of Wed 21st. If this is accommodated there will be a little satisfaction for everyone, employers and employees and the economy as a long weekend will mean more spending on leisure, etc. Another possibility is moving some of the April/May holidays (other than easter weekend, of course) to mid year school holiday time to allow employees to rather get their 'mid year break' during the school holidays to spend time with the family (something we perhaps all need in the fast paced world we live in).

  • Guy - 2012-06-11 10:41

    Cancel the entire current public holiday calendar. Make the first monday of every month a public holiday and let all the religions take leave for their own holidays. Simple and effective.

  • petrivoges - 2012-06-11 10:44

    I'm a Christian but as a country we have far to many public holidays. I'm ok with scrapping all religious holidays.

  • Wilhelm - 2012-06-11 10:50

    Whats there to discuss. Muslim gets their days, Hindu gets their days. To take away christian holidays goes against religion freedom which is against the constitution of South African Law. If they take it away they MUST take hindu and muslim holidays away as well. Or is this a plan by muslims and hindu's to discriminate against Christianity cause they are afraid of the real religion.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 10:55

      Which Muslim or Hindu festivals are recognised as public holidays? Personally I think you are talking nonsense and want to protect the status quo which suits you and your religion.

      samantha.5243 - 2012-06-11 11:02

      @ Wilhelm, I need to correct you, Hindhu's do not get a public holiday for our religious days, like Diwali for example, we have to take it as part of our annual leave, it would be nice to have it as a public holiday then everyone can have that day off too whether you celebrate or not, just like how everyone has christmas off-

      mohammedsiddique.kadwa - 2012-06-11 11:23

      @ wilhelm-Nobody wants to discriminate against Christians, its just that other religions should not be discriminated against.

      Cherri - 2012-06-11 13:41

      Samantha, maybe that's something that you should take up with your employers, as most allow 2 to 3 days for religious holidays and it is not deducted from your annual leave.

      naeem.padia - 2012-06-12 13:32

      @ Wilhelm: Have u been smoking your Christmas socks? LOL! Where do you get your facts from. Don't make uninformed comments, it just makes you seem ignorant.

  • kindness.sweet - 2012-06-11 10:57

    can the same be said in Saudi, Iraq, Israel, China, Japan, etc? we know for sure that the muslim dont compromise their islamic holidays, and why do we have to accomodate muslim here when we are not accomodated in their countries?

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:14

      We have to 'accommodates' them because we live under a democratic constitution that guarantees our freedoms, and theirs....(or that's what I've been lead to believe)

      Mohamed Raeez Allie - 2012-06-11 11:14

      wake up pls! we not in china, Iraq... we are Muslims in South Africa, we are citizens on this county!

      kindness.sweet - 2012-06-11 11:22

      so, if you Muslim in SA, then am also a Christian in Saudi and Palestine right? so i have a right to go to a christian church, which i believe there's none. arent the islamic countries democratic? are we the only democratic country in Africa? i doubt.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:32

      Saudi Arabia and Palestine are sovereign states with their own laws. They are irrelevant to this discussion. You live in South Africa where the constitution guarantees freedom of religion. Stop worrying about the rest of the world. We live in South Africa.

      H9005 - 2012-06-11 14:43

      @Kindness - One needs to consider the amount of people of other faiths in SA vs Christians. If you look at China, Saudi, Iraq, etc the religious make-up is very different. I'm not for having public holidays for all religions but your point needs to be taken into context. SA is genuinely a multi-racial and multi-religious country and thus questions such as these will continually be raised.

      benn.sadie - 2012-06-11 19:27

      By the way, there are more than 100 million christians in the house church movement in China alone. They are a non-compromising group and on fire for Jesus

  • Shirley Van Heerden - 2012-06-11 10:59

    I don't see anyone complain when they travel to the seaside for easter weekend. And BTW Easter is also a jewish holiday.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:04

      I think you will find that Easter is definitely NOT a Jewish holiday. The point is that everyone in the country is forced to take leave at a time that suits christians. What if I want to use those days in August?

      vandeventer.sarel - 2012-06-11 11:26

      Then take leave, the economy cant handle more public holidays

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 12:42

      Not more holidays...less holidays i.e. cancel all religious holidays and make everyone take leave whenever they want

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 13:06

      Passover and easter are two different things.

  • Lynn - 2012-06-11 11:00

    Is there not more urgent things to sort out than worry about holidays. Why not close the country down for 3 weeks a year for everybody and make all these days the holidays then everyone will be happy!!!!

  • kindness.sweet - 2012-06-11 11:04

    This is South Africa, and people should get used to it. Why cant they suggest the same about the hindu holidays in islamic countries? if we accomodate the muslim, then we should also be accomodated in their countries like saudi and iraq etc.... People come for work opportunities, and later on want to practise their beliefs and enforce it to other people, is there a christian church in Saudi or Palestine? we have lost and lots of Mosque in SA for sure. we now have food certified as hallal, i dont need to eat that. am not muslim, whey does vegetables have to be certified in the 1st place? u have to kill an animal in a particular way, and package it also ina particular way? what the hack is this? is SA now also an islamic country?

      pretoriushj - 2012-06-11 11:12

      I agree, I want to eat my pork no mater where I am.

      Phae - 2012-06-11 11:17

      You really need to learn about other cultures, and this is NOT a Christian country, it is a secular state and should be managed as such. It encourages tolerance at all levels, that is its purpose and one of the reasons it is considered to be so advanced.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:19

      because we live under a democratic constitution that guarantees our freedoms, and theirs....(or that's what I've been lead to believe) You are so proud to live in 'South Africa' but you don't seem to know anything about the place.

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:37

      @kindness.sweet. Man but you just don't live up to your name do you? You should change it to Intolerant.NarrowMinded. or maybe Doff.Dumb

      kindness.sweet - 2012-06-11 13:51

      u are saying that bcos i said things that u dont agree to. i understand your stereo type mind. if we are a secular state, then we shouldnt be having halal label on our food. u go to pick n pay and woolies, u find this stickers on the food. why is that then? secular means: no preferential religion in a country.

      Phae - 2012-06-11 19:31

      This may come as news, but pick n pay and woolworths are companies not government departments. They sell produce their customers want to make money, not to support religions.

      Emile - 2012-06-12 02:53

      also, the halaal sticker is just a little courtesy to their hindu and islamic customers. it cant be helped that you stuff anything in YOUR mouth. you dont need stickers so at least dont complain about halaal foods. your other points are stupid enough... you know i make it a point not to unnecessarily troll ppl but you are really asking for it

      ztoefy - 2012-06-12 12:37

      I'd be to happy to be in a muslim country but the white man brought my forefathers here as slaves so unfortunately you have deal with the fact that we here now. Same like jews who require kosha.

  • pretoriushj - 2012-06-11 11:05

    I say take it away but then those religious hours we had at varsity for the Jews and Muslims should also be taken away because no consideration was given towards the Christian students who then had to wait for classes to resume. Its is all a waste of productive time.

  • Marrok - 2012-06-11 11:06

    yayyy - this is a bonus. if you want to take leave for religious reasons, then do. if you don't, then don't. time off is time off, whatever you use it for. as it is, folks are using public holidays to commemorate specific events whichever way they wanted in the first place... so.... i think CANCEL public holidays, and simply increase leave to 4 weeks per year for everyone who has a job. if you choose to strike, or toyi toyi, or go to the clinic, or has a cheezburger on your leave days, then it counts towards your 4 weeks and that's that. period.

  • davorin.dobrovic - 2012-06-11 11:08

    If you're not a Christian simply negotiate with your employer to trade your public holidays for days that are of significance to you. This is an incredibly common practise already. I'm not a Christian but I have the maturity to not be threatened by Christian holidays in a predominantly Christian land.

      Phae - 2012-06-11 11:31

      Why should they have to negotiate? Read some of the comments of Xtian bosses that abhor Islam and refuse to allow their employees to practice it. Maturity has nothing to do with allowing each one the right to his own beliefs without fear of exclusion or intimidation. Chritianity has its tenticles in far too many places in our society, and the more we dilute any type of relgious hold on humanity the better our futures become.

  • davorin.dobrovic - 2012-06-11 11:09

    I agree it's a great way to get some overtime pay.

  • Charl - 2012-06-11 11:10

    South Africa is a secular state and all religions are equal under our constitution; so either all religions' sacred days should be public holidays or none.

  • Charl - 2012-06-11 11:10

    South Africa is a secular state and all religions are equal under our constitution; so either all religions' sacred days should be public holidays or none.

  • gemmy.reese - 2012-06-11 11:11

    I am muslim, I don't get my days off because my boss said my religion is a virus. So why should xstians. Last time I looked this wasn't a xstian country. So why must one religious group get preference?

  • jody.beggs - 2012-06-11 11:18

    Stop all religious holidays , faith is wasted on your own time... When people pray to a god that condemns woman to eat there children for disobedience, its an evil god and does not deserve praise or attention! Damn the man.

      CHILDOFTHESON - 2012-06-13 13:11

      Pro 10:18 He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool.

  • Oom - 2012-06-11 11:20

    I am a Christian and trust me, having "Christian holidays" will not make me more of a Christian and not having them will definitely not take anything away from my faith or from who God is. The God I know, definitely does not need our holidays (or rituals) to be honoured. It is what is in our hearts and the true motives of our actions where the real questions are to be asked.

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:24


      Antie - 2012-06-13 07:11

      Now that is the attitude jesus would've had...welgedaan oom.

      CHILDOFTHESON - 2012-06-13 13:18

      Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Rom 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

  • Rohann - 2012-06-11 11:24

    I'm not a religous person but I do think the most hipocritical people are the atheists. I see countless so called atheist people celebrate chrismas and easter with their families. I don't see non-muslims or non-jews celebrating jewish or muslim holidays so I say let the christian holidays stay!

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:35

      People celebrate at those times because that's when the schools are on holiday and people have time off work because of public holidays. It's not hypocritical, just like it's not hypocritical to enjoy Sunday lunch, even though Sunday is only a day off because of christian influence on the calendar.

      Chez - 2012-06-11 11:39

      @BobbyM. I like what you say

      Rohann - 2012-06-11 11:58

      Whey Dec 25 then why not 1st of jan or any other public holiday in the school holiday. I also see atheist let their kids participate in easter egg hunts. Why? I am getting a bit of topic but all I'm saying is give riligous people a fair shake. If someone is racist or homophobic the whole world is up in arms and rightly so but religion especially christianity is getting hammered and nobody does a thing. Also I'm not saying that all atheists are hipocritical just like all christians are not retarded Jesus freaks.

      Emile - 2012-06-12 03:02

      yeah, that great christian tradition where we let our children rummage around for candy in strange places... you do know that finding chocolate eggs gets you no closer to heaven in ANY possible way right? we may as well let the little athiest kids join in the fun, its pointless anyways

      ztoefy - 2012-06-12 12:14

      Easter eggs and egg hunts have nothing to do with christianity. Those are pagan traditions that have crept into society. Same like hot cross buns are not a religious's just a bun!!

  • Illchill - 2012-06-11 11:26

    Does this not make us a complaicent nation dont get me wrong i am nt saying the situation is ok we have had these holidays for years why now? We seem to be in a constant battle with our self

  • pretoriushj - 2012-06-11 11:28

    In my pocket diary for 2012 I have 15 Jewish, 9 Muslim, 8 Hindu and 8 Christian holidays/festivals listed. For Christian holidays only TWO are public holidays. So firstly someone should be sued as only four religions are represented in my diary, this is pure discrimination.\r\nThe topic of this article is just part of some anc election propaganda.....that always creep up on us at election times. I am pretty sure that some white Christian is to blame for this religious holiday discrimination. So I would suggest that everyone gets a grip and ignore this.

      Antie - 2012-06-13 07:14

      How many of the others are public holidays....for interest sake...

  • Mmamodiehi Elsie Moeketsane - 2012-06-11 11:29

    Let the government put the matter to referendum, then people will see that the majority of SA are Christians, therefore the holiday will reflect as such

      bobby.mykonos - 2012-06-11 11:36

      We don't need a referendum, we already have a constitution that guarantees religious freedom. Nice try though.

      Phae - 2012-06-11 11:51

      It is against the constitution plain and simple. This is NOT a Christian state. You have the freedom to practice your beliefs anywhere in your own time, the more we remove religious holds over governments the more we ensure true freedom for humanity.

  • wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 11:31

    I like the days off, but they shouldn't be affiliated with any religion. What about the other religions? Do they get recognition? Non-believers/atheists don't get anything? Or are only the Christians and Muslims privileged to be recognized?

      Rohann - 2012-06-11 11:34

      What do you mean non-believers/atheists get nothing? I'm a non believer and I get of on good friday and chrismas don't you?

      wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-11 13:09

      I meant atheists don't have a special day off specifically for non-belief. Why do xtians get special days? Yes everyone benefits by being off but it is attributed to just the xtian religion.

      Rohann - 2012-06-11 14:14

      Ok cool I understand your point but Christian holidays mark a specific event in their history. Like the crucifiction or the birth of Jesus. Its not just random days. What do you want to celebrate?

      Emile - 2012-06-12 03:05

      he wants to celabrate nothing... it minimalist and artsy... also super gay and pretty much exactly what i would expect from that douchebag

      ztoefy - 2012-06-12 12:17

      At my previous company they tried implementing that if you don't want your religious holiday to be taken off your annual leave then you must come into work on easter and christmas but what about the athiests. It obviously didn't work.

      Emile - 2012-06-13 02:55

      @jon - lol where did that come from? gay crusader indeed... im just poking fun at the silly people, of which i happen to be a proud member. i have no prejudices either way, and am indeed of the christian persuasion(nice guess). im not religious though... cant handle all the dumb rules

  • thebutler23 - 2012-06-11 11:38

    THe last time I hear 70% of people professed to being CHristian in this nation, it stand to reason that we should stick with the majority since it would be impossible to make every religeon's holidays a public holiday, we would bankrupt the country, there is another agenda to these complaints which should not be accommodated. This country still professes to be CHristian although it mostly does not behave that way and the economy is based around those holidays, the country would fold economically if they cancelled these holidays!! It is ridiculous to even consider it!!

      Marius - 2012-06-11 20:31

      Wait, what? Do you have ANY idea what the loss in GDP and other income to the economy is because of public holidays? "the country would fold economically if they cancelled these holidays" I realize you are serious. I also realize you are extremely uninformed and ignorant. You start of by saying that more religious holidays would bankrupt the country, and then that cancelling these holidays would bankrupt the country - so which is it? The fact that 9 people (thus far) have given you a thumbs up is an indication that people is utterly clueless.

  • piet.strydom - 2012-06-11 11:38

    Cancel the holidays, you people need to work more....