Mandla Mandela calls on defence minister in SANDF headscarf drama

Mandla Mandela calls on defence minister in SANDF headscarf drama

- Mandla Mandela, Nelson Mandela's grandson, has rallied behind Major Fatima Isaacs

- This comes after Isaacs, who is a SANDF officer, was ordered to remover her hijab

- Isaacs faces disciplinary action for failing to comply

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Mandla Mandela has come out strongly in support of Muslim SANDF officer Major Fatima Isaacs.

Isaacs was sanctioned because she refused to comply with an order to take off her hijab (headscarf).

Mandla took to social media to post a message about the incident, saying, "We call on Minister to stop SANDF headscarf witch hunt immediately!"

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"It is inconceivable that the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) would deny an employee the right to pursue her religious freedom to wear a headscarf," the post continued.

Isaacs faces potential disciplinary action for failing to remove her hijab. She appeared before a military court this week over the matter. Her case has been postponed to August, according to Eyewitness News.

Mandla Mandela, who is the eldest grandson of icon Nelson Mandela, condemned the SANDF's decision and urged South Africans from all walks of life to speak out in defence of Isaacs.

Like Isaacs, Mandela is Muslim, having converted four years ago, has gathered.

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A legal representative for Isaacs says that they are fighting to have the matter dismissed. Additionally, the legal advisor says that the officer who ordered Isaacs to remove the hijab had been harassing Isaacs prior to the incident. 

In response to the incident, SANDF says that they respect religious freedom, but said that all officers are taught about the rules concerning uniform codes when they join.

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