Matjhabeng Municipality Mayor Nkosinjane Speelman has been suspended for calling members of the coloured community 'boesmans' and drunkards. Picture: Matjhabeng Municipality / Facebook
Matjhabeng Municipality Mayor Nkosinjane Speelman has been suspended for calling members of the coloured community 'boesmans' and drunkards. Picture: Matjhabeng Municipality / Facebook

Welkom mayor suspended for racist remarks towards coloured community

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Apr 8, 2020

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Johannesburg - A now-suspended Free State municipality mayor has had to issue two apologies following racist remarks he made towards the coloured community of Bronville.

Nkosinjane Speelman, the mayor of Matjhabeng Municipality in Welkom, had to apologise on Wednesday for the second time after he referred to coloured people in Bronville as "boesman".

Speelman had been recorded making the remarks to soldiers deployed for the lockdown. He accused the coloured community of Bronville of being drunkards and loitering the streets in violation of lockdown rules.

He issued his first apology earlier in the week and said his remarks were a "slip of the tongue". He attempted to explain away his remarks.

The ANC in the Free State placed him on leave and summoned him to explain himself to the party. On Wednesday he issued another apology to the coloured community of Bronville and said his remarks were uncalled for.

"I apologise unconditionally to the coloured community of Bronville and the whole coloured community of South Africa. This apology is also humbly presented to our whole South African nation with specific reference to all our national groups, and specifically to my political party, and beloved liberation movement, the ANC.

"I am deeply embarrassed for the shame and harm that my utterly unacceptable remarks have caused. Those deplorable utterances in no way whatsoever reflect the non-racial struggle for a just and inclusive South Africa that we as members of the ANC so proudly fought for," Speelman said.

"I have been summoned by the ANC Free State Provincial Executive Committee, to whom I will give a full account, and in person also present an unconditional apology. As a disciplined cadre of the ANC, I will subject myself to the wishes and discipline of my organisation. It is my ardent wish to do everything possible, and expected from me, to address, and correct, the terrible mistake that I have made," he said. 

Political Bureau 

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