Hellenic, Italian, Portuguese communities condemn racist rant by Adam Catzavelos
Organisations representing the Hellenic (Greek and Cypriot), Italian and Portuguese communities in South Africa have distanced themselves from Adam Catzavelos' racist rant, made while he was holidaying in Greece.
Catzavelos, who lives in Johannesburg, recorded himself on a beach saying: "Not one k****r in sight. F*cking heaven on earth… You cannot beat this!"
He has since been fired from the family business, St George's Fine Foods, and clients of the company have decided to find another supplier.
His sons' school has also banned him from setting foot on its premises until further notice.
The Economic Freedom Fighters in Gauteng opened a case of crimen injuria against him, and his actions were reported by a few organisations to the South African Human Right Commission (SAHRC).
The Hellenic, Italian and Portuguese (HIP) Alliance said in a statement that it collaborated with a number of like-minded organisations to pursue a socially cohesive South African society.
"It is therefore with the greatest disappointment that HIP learnt of the unfortunate, hurtful and deplorable racial utterances of Mr Adam Catzavelos, a South African, made whilst he was visiting Greece."
Distancing itself, the alliance said his comments were irresponsible and dehumanising.
"Whilst we are of the view that Mr Catzavelos utterances are in the minority, they do nonetheless highlight the need for all of us to redouble our efforts at building a non-racist, non-sexist, democratic South Africa that we can all be proud of."
The Federation of Hellenic Communities and Societies of South Africa said his comments "were personal and in no way reflect the opinions of Hellenes".
"We appeal to all South Africans to work together with mutual respect to resolving the important issues that face us all," said the federation's president, John Philippou.
"The crime situation, economic imbalances, educational and health challenges that we all need to help resolve far outweigh the lapses of judgements of people such as Mr Catzavelos and others."