South Africa: EFF supporters attack H&M stores over 'racist jumper advert'

Violet Powell
January 14, 2018

While some aren't aware of the H&M advert that saw an global backlash, EFF members say this was a mere warning to companies that publish racist ads.

On the other side of Pretoria, police officers were on standby at the Kolonnade Mall, as the EFF protests targeted different shopping centres.

Members of a South African opposition party stormed into some H&M stores across the country on Saturday (local time) to protest a promotional image of a black child wearing a sweatshirt with the words "Coolest monkey in the jungle". The H&M signage outside the shop had been broken and red fragments were still on the floor. "If they are not going to close the shop, they must just know we are going to be here nearly every day, starting from today", he said. The controversy prompted Canadian hip-hop artist The Weeknd, who previously partnered with H&M and modeled for the company in 2017, to end his relationship with the brand.

H&M had issued an apology in response to complaints about the hoodie and its model. Many people accused the worldwide chain store of racism.

"We can't accept that H&M, after what they have done, is coming now and saying we apologise".

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Protestors went on the rampage inside the store earlier on Saturday and police responded with rubber bullets.

The Sandton Chronicle reported Police Captain Granvile Meyer said: 'The EFF supporters have caused damage inside the [H&M] store.

Since then, regular consumers of the store have taken to social media to criticize their decision, prompting the company to eventually release a statement of apology.

"The safety and security of our customers, staff and tenants is of utmost importance and the affected area has been secured by the South African Police Services (SAPS)", said Menlyn Park.

EFF protests were also reported at H&M stores in Gauteng's Mall of the South and Mall of Africa, and at Clearwater Mall in Johannesburg.

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