Podcast: Why the “K-word lady” from Limpopo ended up with a criminal record

The consequences of using the k-word recently caught up with Phalaborwa resident Sandy Shipman.

According to a report by Phalaborwa Herald journalist Billy Sibuyi, Shipman was found guilty of crimen injuria in the Phalaborwa Magistrate’s Court in July. She was sentenced to either six months in prison or payment of a R10 000 fine. Shipman chose the latter.

This podcast highlights the effects that racism can have:

Listen to “The K-word And Your Criminal Record” on Spreaker.

  • What is crimen injuria? Is it the same thing as racism?

Crimen injuria is the unlawful, intentional and serious injury of someone’s dignity. From this definition, it is clear that racism can constitute such an injury to dignity. Anyone who alleges being a victim of crimen injuria must visit his/her local police station to open a criminal case.

Although racism in itself is not a crime in terms of South African law yet, the Prevention and Combating of Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill will most likely criminalise it in the near future.

  • Where do I report racism?

In addition to taking the crimen injuria route, victims of racism, hate speech and other human rights violations may report it with the Human Rights Commission (HRC).

The HRC investigates alleged human rights violations and seeks to mediate disputes relating to human rights. If a reconciliation-focused mediation cannot be attained, such complaints are redirected to the Equality Court. A good example is the Equality Court case of recently deceased Penny Sparrow.

Source: Capricorn Review