Law and Civil Society

An issue that has particularly gripped our country over the past few weeks concerned the charges brought against Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan by the National Prosecuting Authority. Serious concern was expressed over the timing and motivations behind this move, and no doubt we have not seen the end of the story, despite the case having now been formally withdrawn.

On being approached for comment, the Board said that it echoed and endorsed the many statements that have been made in support of Minister Gordhan from across the political spectrum. Minister Gordhan, we said, is “a public servant of outstanding integrity, dedication and expertise”, and we salute him for the outstanding work he is doing in addressing the many complex challenges facing our country’s economy”.

In the end, the outcome can be seen as having been another demonstration of the supremacy of the rule of law ,  the strength of our civil society and the role and importance of our free and independent media The SAJBD has  absolute faith in our democratic institutions and importantly in our judiciary’s ability to protect our constitutionally enshrined democratic rights and  freedoms. These have been left standing tall in the wake of the Gordhan affair, and as a result South Africa is a much better place than it was six weeks ago. 

Recent Articles

Cosatu's Tony Ehrenreich Censured for Threatening Jewish Community

On 13 August 2014, then Western Cape Cosatu chairman Tony Ehrenreich posted a comment on Facebook calling for revenge attacks against the SA Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) and other “Zionist supporters” in retaliation for the deaths of Palestinian civilians. Amongst other inflammatory comments, he wrote, “The time has come to say very clearly that if a woman or child is killed in Gaza, then the Jewish board of deputies, who are complicit, will feel the wrath of the People of SA with the age old biblical teaching of an eye for an eye”.  

Charisse Zeifert writes for Saturday Citizen

Have you heard the joke where a Jew, an Afrikaner and an Indian walk into a Shebeen? It sounds like the kind of “witty” yarn that EFF leader Julius Malema would spin. Oh, wait, actually, he has already told tales about different minorities – singling them out for abuse. Most recently, he “cleverly” managed to insult two minority groups at the same time, when he said: “There’s a group of white right-wingers (read Afrikaners) who are being trained by Jews in Pretoria to be snipers.” (sic)

Jewish Affairs Rosh Hashanah 2018

We are pleased to announce that the Rosh Hashanah 2018 issue of Jewish Affairs has been posted on our website. The printed version will be sent to subscribers shortly. As always, we ask that you assist us in widening the reach of the journal by forwarding this message to anyone who may be interested.

In May this year, the State of Israel celebrated its 70th anniversary. To mark that memorable milestone, the Rosh Hashanah 2018 issue of Jewish Affairs is devoted almost entirely to the subject of Israel, and in particular to the noteworthy role that South African Jews played in its birth and early struggle for survival. The editorial board thanks all those who responded to its invitation to contribute their own memories and perspectives for this special JA issue.