Publication: Business Day Date: 2004-10-21 Reporter: S.E. Hurwitz




Business Day

Date 2004-10-21


S.E. Hurwitz

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David Gleason's appalling column on October 18 was basically a defence of an accused masquerading under the guise of an attack on the legitimacy of the prosecution. A pillar of the community is portrayed in the column as being the victim of racism, fear, money and ambition.

The accusation that whites and Africans are racist because of their alleged innate hatred of persons of Indian descent is reflected, Gleason reasons, in Prof Themba Sono's belief that his skin colour was being used by Schabir Shaik for personal gain. Hardly a basis for attributing racism to South African society, or the prosecuting authority.

Gleason asks a rhetorical question who has the most to gain or lose by Deputy President Jacob Zuma's ascendance to the presidency? but does not have the courage to identify the culprits.

The suggestion that Shaik is being prosecuted solely for political motives, to besmirch Zuma's good name, prejudges the issue and the outcome of the trial.

Should Shaik be acquitted, it will be legitimate to ask what motivated the prosecution.

Gleason's suggestion that money and ambition underlie the prosecution is true Zuma's unending need for money and Shaik's boundless ambition to satisfy that need.

Gleason's suggestion that the white business elite is co-operating with black politicians in a conspiracy to besmirch Zuma's reputation lacks any credible foundation.

Gleason's writings at the time of the Hefer Commission appeared to adopt a similar stance in defence of the same clique.

Articles such as these lend no credibility to your standing as a reputable financial publication.

With acknowledgements to S.E. Hurwitz and the Business Day.