Cape Town’s commuters were greeted this morning by the annual parade of barely-dressed students of the city’s University, as they sold the Sax Appeal magazine at intersections to raise funds for SHAWCO.
Sax Appeal is a Cape Town tradition, which this year coincides with the President’s State of the Nation Address. Based on this timing, the Chairperson of the IFP Youth Brigade and Member of Parliament, the Hon. Mr Mkhuleko Hlengwa, has asked some pertinent questions.
“When we sit in Parliament tonight, we hope to hear the President being honest about gross inequality in our nation and the growing racial divisions,” said Hlengwa, “It’s interesting then that UCT students chose a cover for their fundraising magazine that depicts a suited white man in a dominant pose, holding a riding crop, and looking out over townships. Are they making a statement about inequality and race?”
The IFP has written to the Editor of Sax in the past asking about the motive behind the cover. In 2013, the cover depicted a murdered young woman with her stomach cut open while a man stood over her with bloodied weapons. “This jarring image hit the streets the very day we heard of Anene Booysen’s brutal murder,” recalls Hlengwa. The Editor never responded.
“Unfortunately, it seems clear that the satirical magazine does not intend to make a statement beyond the old adage that ‘sex sells’.”
Hlengwa explained, “It was refreshing to see one young man impeccably dressed in a business suit this morning, suggesting pride in his university and confidence in his future. Amidst all the underwear and fishnet stockings, he really made an impact. I was really disappointed to discover that the suit was just a reference to ‘50 Shades of Grey’.”
“Why are young people in S&M gear standing just metres away from primary schools, selling magazines with a parental advisory for explicit content?” asked Hlengwa. “What are we supposed to tell our children on the way to school? That they should aspire to attend UCT so that they too can ‘sell sex’ on the sidewalk?”
“We admire the commitment shown by students who got up at 03:30am to raise funds. But if Sax Appeal isn’t making a comment on social issues, and isn’t doing the image of UCT any favours, what is the actual message it’s trying to convey? They’re missing a great opportunity to make a difference.”
The Hon. Mr Mkhuleko Hlengwa MP
Chairperson of the IFP Youth Brigade, 083 871 2711
IFP Media, Parliament