Qaanitah Hunter | Cii News| October 1, 2012
Open Shuhada Street says they will continue their protests against Cape Town based cosmetic retailer, Wellness Warehouse, if the go against their word and again stock Israel’s AHAVA cosmetics.
The Wellness Warehouse in Cape Town promised to remove all cosmetic products manufactured by AHAVA following a protest by University of Cape Town (UCT) students, members of the South African Human Rights Organisation and Open Shuhada Street.
It was regarded as a major step forward in the global Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement but it appears the victory may have not been long lived.
A therapist at the company told Cii News on the condition of anonymity, that management only removed the products for the duration of the protests. She said the products have been returned to the shelves.
Open Shuhada Street’s Bruce Baigrie said if this is the case they will continue their protests.
“If that is the case we will be protesting yet again and take further action,” he said.
The company CEO, Sean Gomez, assured the activists that he will comply with South African law and trading notices issued by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
“DTI has issued a notice in line with Section 24 of the Consumer Protection Act which means AHAVA must be properly relabeled as: Made in the Occupied Palestinian Territories,” Baigrie said.
He said they understood that the regional manager pulled the product of their shelves.
The management of Wellness Warehouse could not be reached by Cii News for comment despite repeat attempts.
Occupy Shuhadah Street have been engaging with Wellness Warehouse for over two years to respect the Palestinian call for BDS.
AHAVA Cosmetics, an Israeli-based company, is accused by human rights organisations of being complicit in Israel’s occupation of Palestine and Israel’s illegal settlements enterprise.
AHAVA operates in Israel’s illegal settlements in the Palestinian West Bank territories in violation of international law, the organisation said.