Virgin Active: Members need to exercise tolerance & respect
The gym’s management say they ‘politely’ asked Muhammed Desai not the wear a Pro-Palestinian T-shirt.
JOHANNESBURG - Virgin Active on Thursday said no legal item of clothing is banned from its facilities, but members need to exercise tolerance and respect.
On Wednesday night, a Pro-Palestinian activist, Muhammed Desai, was not allowed to enter the Houghton gym, called 'Old Eds', because he was wearing a T-shirt with the words 'In solidarity with Palestinians against Israeli apartheid'.
A video of a confrontation between Desai and management has gone viral.
WATCH: This BDS T-shirt wearer was kicked out of a Virgin Active gym
The club's management says members complained about his choice of clothing and politely asked him not the wear this again.
Management has now requested to meet with Desai.
Professor Jane Duncan, from the University of Johannesburg's (UJ) journalism department said, "We can't expect a private entity, like Virgin Active, to require people to leave both constitutional values at the front door. They seem to think that as a private entity they can contract themselves out of the right to freedom of expression, and unfortunately they can't. "