|The Media Review Network (MRN) is not surprised at a recent article which appeared in the “Lowvelder”, a regional newspaper published in Mpumalanga. (13th April 2018).
The article is written by a well-known Islamophobe and journalist, De Wet Potgieter.
In the article, he focuses on the Somali, Pakistani and Bangladeshi communities. He refers to them as illegal immigrants who have come to South Africa for training in terror activities.
In 2013 he wrote an article titled “Al Qaeeda alive and well in South Africa”. In that article he made serious allegations against certain individuals belonging to the Muslim Faith. At the time he was employed by the Daily Maverick, an on-line source of information. When challenged to provide evidence regarding these allegations, Potgieter was unable to do so. He was asked to resign his position and the Daily Maverick issued an apology to the Muslim Community.
Together with other self-styled “terror experts”, notably Hussein Solomon and Jasmine Opperman, Potgieter has made some inflammatory statements on terror activities in South Africa.
It must be pointed out that none of these so-called “terror experts” have ever provided an iota of evidence to substantiate their spurious claims that South Africa is fertile ground for terror training and vulnerable to terror attacks. The purpose is to create a climate of fear and to fan the flames of Islamophobia and Xenophobia.
Unfortunately, the media grasp every word spewed by these “experts” because of their “sensational” value, which helps enhance their sales figures.
Potgieter was due to appear on an on-line radio station with MRN, to substantiate his vitriolic statements about these communities. Unfortunately, he backed out at the last minute.
Should South Africans be afraid? Yes. Afraid of those peddling the fruits of this poison tree.