A Muslim woman from Paarl is traumatised after allegedly being attacked for wearing her religious attire. Photo: Supplied
A Muslim woman from Paarl is traumatised after allegedly being attacked for wearing her religious attire. Photo: Supplied

'You Muslim rubbish’ - Paarl woman traumatised after Islamophobic attack

By Robin-Lee Francke Time of article published Sep 9, 2020

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Cape Town - A woman from Paarl in the Western Cape is traumatised after allgedly being attacked by a man for wearing her hijab and niqab.

A niqab is a garment worn by Muslim women that covers their face, and a hijab is a head covering.

The 28-year-old woman from Paarl North said she was on her way to her brother’s business on Monday when the incident occurred.

“I was en route to help my brother at the snoek stand as it was grant time and he tends to get busy.

“I decided to walk to my brother. It was about 1.30pm and as I was walking this white man comes up to me and tries to pull off my hijab and niqab and said: ‘Jy slamse gemors, dis f$%# warm (you Muslim rubbish, it’s F#$% hot)’. It’s something I didn’t expect to ever happen to me,” she told African News Agency.

A niqab is a garment worn by Muslim women that covers their face, and a hijab is a head covering. Photo: Supplied

She said she fought back, but the man threw what she believes was a water bottle in her face.

“I don’t know if he thought I was a foreigner, but I was fighting with him. He tried to throw a stone at me but missed. The bottle to my face resulted in me having a blue eye,” she explained.

The woman said she followed the man, who all the while was shouting derogatory word at her.

She asked neighbours in the vicinity if they knew him, but they did not.

“He kept shouting these vulgar words at me, telling me he was going to stab me,” she claimed.

“I then got home and told my father what happened and we went to where this man was.

“My father was talking nicely to him and he tried throwing a massive stone at my father, who is a pensioner, and threatened us with a firearm in public,” she claimed.

The man continued to insult her father and her mother, who by that time had arrived at the scene.

“He kept shouting: ‘Julle slamse gemors (you Muslim rubbish).’"

“My father, who has a heart condition, was nearly rushed to hospital because of this,” she said.

The woman still went to her brother’s fish stall later.

Having lived in the area all her life, she still cannot believe what happened.

“I have never experienced anything like this. My family is outraged. I filed charges with police and posted my experience on social media…

“Yet the police constable is contacting me asking me to remove my post from social media.

“I will not leave this as is. I will not tolerate this abuse,” she said.

Provincial police spokesperson Colonel André Traut confirmed that a case has been opened at the Paarl police station.

“An assault and crimen injuria case docket is currently under investigation regarding the incident. No one has been arrested or charged as yet,” Traut said.

African News Agency (ANA)

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