The Economic Freedom Fighters’ (EFF) nationwide protest at Clicks stores was no doubt the major story on Monday, 7 September 2020 – prompting reaction from all corners of society, including other political parties, many of them condemning the violence which broke out. It is safe to assume that it was in response to the unrest, that the Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni called out anarchy, saying it would not move the country forward.
“Anarchy is not the motive force of Transformation. It is regressive. Racism too is not going to take our beloved country forward! Bakuninism and racism are in the same WhatsApp group”, Mboweni said in a tweet posted in the wee hours of Tuesday, September 8, 2020.
The EFF-led demonstrations were in reaction to a controversial advertisement from health and beauty retailer Clicks, which depicts black women’s hair as dry and frizzy. While the ad has been met with backlash, even prompting Clicks to apologise, the red berets have been the most notable in their anger.
The party insists that the demonstrations, which are set to continue, are meant to be peaceful, however there have been incidents of violence and vandalism by members at several Clicks stores in the country, including the Eastern Cape and Mpumalanga.
Mboweni: EFF disorderly conduct will come back to haunt SA
The minister has strongly condemned the chaos and also warned that it would not end well, should the country continue to allow it.
“This thing of allowing disorderly behavior will come back to haunt this country. You need a very firm stance on the Rule of Law. Protest, Yes. Destroy property and business, No! But private enterprise must also be sensitive to our environment. We are building a new society”, Mboweni tweeted earlier on.
In another tweet likely also weighing in on the protests, Mboweni referred to the EFF as ‘Bakuninists’, and said the party seemed to not understand the constitutionality of protesting – particularly as a right and form of expression.
“We fought for freedom and democratic rights. Amongst others freedom of expression, including protest. But not to infringe on the rights of others or the destruction of public and private property. These Bakuninists must understand this!”, he said.
According to Merriam-Webster, Bakuninism is defined as a doctrine of revolutionary anarchism. It’s a theory based on the destruction of government, and extreme individualism.
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