Retailer Pick n Pay has issued a press statement regarding the debacle over its sponsorship of a music event where singer Steve Hofmeyr is one of the many artists performing.
They say they have conveyed to the organisers of the event their opposition to Hofmeyr's comments, but that the singer is still scheduled to perform.
The sponsorship has already been made and cannot be withdrawn at this point, but they will be reviewing their future sponsorship of the event.
Conrad Koch, a man whom we normally associate with comedy and with his alter-ego dummy Chester Missing, has openly challenged Pick n Pay and Land Rover South Africa on their continued sponsorship of an Afrikaans music festival at which Steve Hofmeyr will be performing towards the end of November.
In a column in The Times newspaper headed “Dear White Supremacists…” he says it isn't a letter to white supremacists, but about them, and how we as a society should be dealing with them.
He then mentions singer Steve Hofmeyr and the tweet he’d sent out the other day: "Sorry to offend but in my books blacks were the architects of apartheid. Go figure."
Koch argues that Hofmeyr can say what he wants, but his sponsors should be taken to task for their tacit support. Using the upcoming Afrikaans is Groot festival as an example, he points out that the event is sponsored by Land Rover and Pick n Pay and asks whether these brands are comfortable with being associated with an apartheid-denialist and white supremacist.
Pick n Pay responded to Koch with “Pick n Pay’s reputation for publicly and strongly opposing racism speaks for itself. We are a contracted sponsor of AIG and support Afrikaans music, not individuals. We are not involved in the event management or the artist selection process”
Pick ‘n Pay are also adamant that they are sponsoring a music festival, and not any individual artist performing at the festival.