SAHRC probes Zuma, Mbete over hate speech complaints

The commission says it's received three complaints levelled against Jacob Zuma and one against Baleka Mbete.

FILE: President Jacob Zuma. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is investigating a rash of hate speech complaints involving prominent politicians, including President Jacob Zuma.

The commission says it's received three complaints levelled against Zuma and one against National Assembly Speaker and African National Congress (ANC) chairperson Baleka Mbete.

The SAHRC's Isaac Mangena says three of the complaints the commission is probing relate to remarks made by the president about Jan van Riebeeck.

"We have accepted all these complaints and we are investigating it."

The Freedom Front Plus asked the commission to look into the matter and two further complaints have since been lodged.

The party's Anton Alberts says the president's comments amount to hate speech.

"He implied that the problems started for South Africa when the white people landed here."

The SAHRC is also probing Mbete's recent tongue lashing of EFF leader Julius Malema.

Mbete called Malema a cockroach, but has since apologised.