Cii News, Pic: Supplied | 04 October 2012
Ralph Lorenz, the Head of Clicks stores, has issued a formal statement to Cii on behalf of the retailer after a Darul Uloom Zakarriyya student, Hassan Basri Bin Abdul Wasi, was allegedly accused of trying to swop an old frying pan for a new one despite paying for it, leading to his arrest.
“There was an incident at our Trade Route Mall store in Lenasia. We telephoned the police and informed centre management security. The matter was taken further by police and centre management security. We have no knowledge of what happened subsequent to Mr. Wasi leaving with police,” said Lorenz.
“We heard on your radio station that Mr. Wasi’s spokesperson said the charges had been dropped. We don’t know if this is correct and we are trying to find out from the authorities. We are taking this matter very seriously and we are investigating all aspects of the matter,” he added.
The retailer has vowed to take the necessary steps if any of their staff were found to be at fault.
“Justice must run its course and the matter is in the hands of the authorities. If our investigation shows that our staff were at fault, then appropriate action will be taken. Any further comment at this stage is premature and the incident is unfortunate and will be treated with the seriousness it deserves.”
There have been mixed responses to calls for a boycott campaign against Clicks by Moulana Zaheer Wadee, a teacher at the Darul Uloom or Islamic seminary, who has been involved in the matter since it occurred over two weeks ago.
Legal representatives have now taken up the case and have reportedly written to Clicks. “We are asking the Muslim community to please stand with us and if Muslims can all unite we can make it known that Muslims do mean a lot.”
According to him the student purchased the frying pan and before leaving the store he asked a security guard to check the pan for him and found it to be used and dirty.
The student was allegedly accused of trying to swop it and allegedly forced to write out a confession before being arrested.
Facebook user, Yusuf Peer wrote: “The idea of the boycott is just nonsensical. Why should ‘Muslims’ boycott Clicks. What proof do we have that the student was falsely accused cos he was Muslim? What has Clicks as a brand done to ‘Muslims’? Yes the incident was wrong but was not representative of Clicks, and considering the matter is under investigation it should be left at such. Pressure should be applied to ensure the investigation is fully carried out and those who brought Clicks into disrepute and ill-treated the customer is fully dealt with. I don’t see any attack on Islam, and it could have been a Christian or Jew who was victim to this unfortunate event. Otherwise we must also find alternative jobs for all the Muslims employed by clicks [sic]?”
Another user, Ummu Umaymah Kajee said: “ I’ve had ENOUGH of this boycotting nonsense. It’s becoming an embarrassment. Why don’t we just go and sit in a bubble and eat off the earth because the entire world seems to be offending us.”
Others however felt differently. Commenting on the website a user wrote: “I think a call to boycott specifically the Trade Route Mall store of Clicks is in order, but it is unnecessary and rather extreme to call for a boycott of all Clicks stores. Staff and management at the Trade Route Mall store are to blame, and not the entire group. Also, this is not the first time something like this has happened in Lenasia. We need to send a strong message that this will not be tolerated. Boycotting TRM Clicks is a small step, but further than that, a case of defamation should be opened up against those involved.”
Tags: Boycott, clicks, frying pan, hassan basri bin abdul wasi, ml zaheer wadee