South Africa 31.8.2018 08:56 am

Bar accused of failing to deal with k-word customers

Singer-songwriter Tumelo Ruele. Picture: Provided.

Singer-songwriter Tumelo Ruele. Picture: Provided.

A singer-songwriter took to social media to detail an alleged racist incident at Colony Arms, claiming that the victims of the incident rather than the perpetrators were asked to leave.

Singer-songwriter Tumelo Ruele and his friends were allegedly called the k-word at Craighall, Johannesburg, bar Colony Arms on Thursday night in just the latest in a string of recent incidents of the slur being used.

He alleges that he and his friends were called the k-word by a young man who was part of a group of white patrons at a nearby table.

According to Ruele, an older man at the table then offered his group drinks so that they would “let it slide.”

Ruele further claims that when he reported the incident to management, rather than any action being taken against the man who used the racist slur or his table, it was instead Ruele’s group that was “chased out.”

The incident was discussed on Bongani Bingwa’s breakfast show on Talk Radio 702 on Friday morning.

We reached out to The Colony Arms for comment and got hold of a manager, who told us that he was not at work the night before, and would have to contact the manager who was on shift to get his version of events. They have not yet made contact.

Attempts to reach Ruele were also unsuccessful at the time of publication of this article.

The past two weeks in South Africa have seen several scandals involving South Africa’s most hurtful racial slur, with businessman Adam Catzavelos widely slammed for his casual use of the k-word in a video documenting his overseas beach holiday, and a KZN ANCYL executive, Suzanne Govender, also accused of using the slur.

READ MORE: Yet another k-word kerfuffle as high school teacher resigns

A former dance music producer and DJ, Mario Viegas, who is South African but currently based in the US, also went on a social media rant in which he used the slur repeatedly.

Most recently, a Westville Girls High School teacher, Danielle de Bruyn, resigned after allegedly using the slur. She claims that she said it in the context of a discussion over a book and that she “never used it in reference to any learner.”

Earlier this year Vicki Momberg became the first person to be jailed for using the term, for an effective two years under the crimen injuria law. She has since been granted leave for appeal and bail.

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