Democratic Alliance press statement by
James Vos MP
DA Shadow Minister of Tourism
Sodwana racist lodge: DA refers incident to tourism ombudsman
The DA will be referring the incident involving guesthouse owner Mr Andre Slade to the Tourism Complains Officer for the racist utterances he gave in numerous media interviews regarding “black people not being allowed” to stay on his premises.
We will be requesting that the Tourism Ombudsman provide recommendations on how best to address this wrongdoing of Mr Slade as well as the exclusionary and unconstitutional operations occurring at this guesthouse. Racism has no place in the tourism industry and it should be condemned harshly by all, including government and all tourism stakeholders.
Furthermore we will be writing to the South African Grading Council to have the guesthouse removed and stripped of its star rating. We cannot allow racist institutions to damage our tourism brand.
The DA is aware that recently elected ANC Provincial Chairperson, Sihle Zikalala is currently investigating this matter as the incumbent MEC in Tourism. We urge Mr Zikalala to firstly condemn the utterances of Mr Slade and then ensure that he faces appropriate action. It is disturbing that the ANC has not condemned the actions of Mr Slade thus far, we urge them to show decisively leadership against racism.
South Africa has a wonderful diversity of people, landscape and wildlife and with many World Heritage Sites to our credit; it has all the opportunities and potential to make this country a sought after and affordable destiny of choice for travel and trade.
Given the job losses in the mining and manufacturing sectors, we need the tourism industry to keep South Africans working. Racism only undermines this objective, all racist incidences have to be addressed and cannot be swept aside.
It is only through job creation and robust economic growth that we will be able to unlock opportunities for all South Africans and give life to the freedoms on which our democracy is based.