The University of Cape Town has been slammed for banning a Danish journalist from its campus because his magazine published a series of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in 2005.
UCT says Flemming Rose is not welcome, and stopped him from delivering the 2016 TB Davie Memorial Lecture, due next month.
He was previously the cultural editor of Jyllands Posten, the koerant that published the Prophet Muhammed cartoons in September 2005, which sparked global protests.
Rose had invited by UCT’s Academic Freedom Committee (AFC) in March 2015.
The AFC said it had been told to cancel Rose’s invitation but refused to do so.
Subsequently, Vice-Chancellor Max Price informed the AFC that it would not be permitted to bring Rose onto campus.
The ban comes in light of the “turbulent atmosphere” on campus, caused by last year’s Rhodes Must Fall and Fees Must Fall protests.
UCT feared Rose’s presence could provoke further protests.
The TB Davie Memorial Lecture for 2016 has now been cancelled.
In his letter to the AFC on July 12‚ Price said that after widespread consultation‚ including talks with the Muslim community in Cape Town‚ it had been decided that it would be “extremely unwise” to go ahead with Rose’s visit.
He wrote: “...Mr Rose is seen by many as a persona non grata and while most would protest peacefully against him‚ we believe there is a real danger that among those offended by the cartoons‚ an element may resort to violence.”