Who Was Penny Sparrow? Here Are Interesting Facts About The Late Convicted Racist

Penny Sparrow was a white South African female who worked as a real-estate agent in the coastal province of KwaZulu-Natal. Before her death, She became infamous in the country after she referred to black South African beach-goers as monkeys on a Facebook post on New Year’s day, 2016.

Penny Sparrow’s Racist Comment

Penny Sparrow took to Facebook to share her frustration on the state of the beach in Durban after the holiday. Beach-goers, said to be specifically Blacks in general; both South African blacks and from elsewhere, had horribly littered the coastline, making it a huge discomfort to other people, but most especially the environment.

Here is what she wrote in her Facebook post:

“These monkeys that are allowed to be released on New Year’s eve and New Year’s day on to public beaches, towns etc obviously have no education what so ever so to allow them loose is inviting huge dirt and troubles and discomfort to others. I’m sorry to say that I was amongst the revellers and all I saw were black on black skins what a shame. I do know some wonderful and thoughtful black people. This lot of monkeys just don’t want to even try. But think they can voice opinions and get their way of dear,” read the first part of her post.

She went on to add that “from now on, I shall address the blacks of South Africa as monkeys as I see the cute little wild monkeys do the same, pick and drop litter.”

Penny Sparrow
Image Source

Her thoughts, almost soon after she posted it, went viral as other users of the social media platform called her and her comments, racist. It was pointed out to her that Black People should never be described as monkeys. Some others, however, came to her defense citing her right to freedom of speech.

The conversation became tense most especially as the injury of racial segregation, created through a system of apartheid from 1948 up until 1994, remains fresh in the minds of the people of Africa’s southernmost country. Ms. Sparrow ended up deleting the post and apologizing, saying she did “not mean it personally”. That apology and redress was late as the authorities had gotten involved with the case.

Conviction And Fine

The African National Congress filed and followed up with the case against Penny Sparrow. She was eventually convicted in the Scottburgh Magistrate’s court in the town of Umzinto after she pleaded guilty to the charge of crimen injuria which is the unlawful or unintentional impairing of the dignity or privacy of another person.

READ
33 Most Famous South African TV Personalities Of All Time

Magistrate Vincent Hlatshway gave Sparrow a 5,000 rand (about $344) fine as well as a suspended two-year prison sentence. She was also ordered to make a public apology for her statements over the same platform which she used to have aired her previous views.

Read Also: Blacks Are illiterates, Unemployed, And Dying Because of Whites – Malema

Life After Conviction: How Penny Sparrow Was Affected

Penny Sparrow, who was also fined R150,000 by the Equality Court for her social media statement, said during an interview with a Magazine after her court case was completed that the case has taken a toll on her life. She started off by reiterating that she is not a racist, before saying that her punishment was too harsh and the repercussion of the whole event had landed heavily on her health.

She said she was disappointed that her daughter’s request for a postponement was dismissed, adding that she was not in KwaZulu-Natal when the matter was heard.

Ms. Sparrow further told the Magazine what she thought about the ruling, defending her statement by explaining what exactly she meant by likening black people to monkeys.

“The white way is to say to our children, ‘you little monkey’. We don’t have hate speech for our children. We love our children. Even my animals, if they’re naughty and pull things out of the dustbin I also say, ‘you naughty little monkeys’.”

Sparrow goes on to say she is “truly sorry” and never meant to insult anyone with her comments.

“I’m very ill with this, it goes right up and they can’t get it right because there’s so much stress because I’ve been accused of something I’m not.”

Following the incident, Penny Sparrow became jobless, left her home on the south coast after receiving various death threats, and lived with friends. In 2019, just about 3 years after the racist comment, she died of colon cancer.

Was this article helpful?
Andile Smith
Andile Smith
Andile provides articles on anything from Politics, Sports, History and entertainment to funny, creepy and weird. His passion for writing allows him to take what is ordinary and transform it into a real masterpiece. He's a true storyteller with a passion for tech and literature
data-matched-content-rows-num="2" data-matched-content-columns-num="4" data-matched-content-ui-type="image_stacked" data-ad-format="autorelaxed">

Recommended

Khosini Dlamini – A Look Back at the Life and Death of Minnie Dlamini Jones’ Brother

A sibling bond is a unique bond most people cherish more than any other thing. South African actress Minnie Dlamini-Jones once shared an amazing...

Truth about Hamilton Ndlovu The Gauteng Businessman Facing SARS For His High-End Car Collection

It is not unusual for people who have acquired new things most especially cars and houses to splash them across their social media for...

Unraveling DJ Tira’s Net Worth, The House and Cars He Spends His Money On

One of the most fantastic DJ's in South Africa and probably the biggest to make it out of KZN, DJ Tira’s net worth is...

Mandisa Meyiwa Met Her Late Husband When He Had Nothing – Meet Senzo Meyiwa’s Wife

It was since 2014 that South African goalie, Senzo Meyiwa, was killed in what was suspected to be a robbery case. Since then, his...

MacDonald Ndou – Demystifying the Real-life KK from Muvhango

MacDonald Ndou is a popular South African actor who is easily recognized for starring in the South African television soap opera, Muvhango. He has...

Featured Today

READ
The Untold Truth of Oscar Pistorius, His Net Worth and Murder Case Trial

Jessica Nkosi Kept Her Romance with Baby Daddy T.K Dlamini Secret – A Look at Their Life Together

Somewhere in the minds of many South Africans, there was always the knack to find out the kind of man Jessica Nkosi was dating,...

Legacy Actors – Meet The Cast Members of M-Net’s Posh Telenovela

If you are a fan of family drama and also love watching television series that chronicles all shades of relatable family issues, then you...

Khosi Ngema – Inside the Life Of Fikile Bhele The Blood And Water TV Actress

Khosi Ngema may just be another South African teenager when she first started, but she is now more than that. The young actress has...

DJ Tira and His Wife Gugu Khathi Have Been Together for 2 Decades – Inside Their Relationship

DJ Tira and his wife, Gugu Khathi, are one of South Africa's most-beloved celebrity couples. They have been on each other's side for two...

Truth about Dj Tira’s Age and the Songs That Made Him Famous

DJ Tira is a South African disc jockey and record producer who gained fame in the entertainment industry and beyond due to his charisma...
Was this article helpful?

Related Stories