A post on Facebook has resulted in the sack of popular South African radio presenter Ravi Govender who insulted President Jacob Zuma for “massacring the beautiful English language”.
He also called the president a “zombie” while comparing him to Mugabe whom he said was a better speaker of the English language.
The Lotus FM presenter, who is also a columnist posted the comment on Monday in reference to Zuma’s speech the same day at a conference in Johannesburg.
He was sacked hours later by his employer – the state broadcaster (SABC).
I am not racist, it is not his first language, but speak in Zulu and get an interpreter. I said a zombie because he sounded like a zombie to me. I have apologised and there is nothing I can do. I am wrong.
SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago confirmed that Ravi Govender’s “contract has been terminated”.
Ravi Govender told local media News24 that he made the comment out of anger but has since apologized.
“I posted what I posted on Facebook out of anger. I should have known better. He sounded dead to me, no feelings, no punctuation at all,” he said.
“I am not racist, it is not his first language, but speak in Zulu and get an interpreter. I said a zombie because he sounded like a zombie to me. I have apologised and there is nothing I can do. I am wrong, I should not have said it,” Govender added.
The Facebook post elicited a lot of anger especially from President Zuma’s family over the zombie reference.
“We fail as the family to understand what prompted Ravi Govender to make such a statement referring to our father as a zombie,” Zuma’s son Edward said and threatened to take him on.