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Choose your form of action: BDS

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To keep up public awareness around the ongoing Woolworths boycott, BDS South Africa has earmarked this Saturday for the monthly National Day of Action. Currently one of the largest boycott campaigns it is directed at forcing Woolworths to terminate all trade links with Apartheid Israel.

“Israeli agriculture expo companies are the main beneficiaries of disposition of land and resources of indigenous Palestinians,” says BDS spokesperson Kwara Kekana.

Once trade links are cut off it would allow for an influx of local products to be supplied.

“The agreement with Woolworths was that they end all trade links with Israel and source all these products locally,” says Kekana.

BDS says that Woolworths use of singer and songwriter Pharrell Williams as the face of its marketing campaign was a stunt to gain public support, in light of the success of the boycott campaign. Williams will be performing in September 2015.

“Woolworths loses R8 million due to the campaign. Now they want to have Pharrell Williams… it is just a PR stunt,” says Kekana.

The campaign involves members of the public participating in any form of protest every last Saturday of the month.

“There are different ways people can support and participate in Boycott Woolworths Campaigns. They can write letters directed to CEO of Woolworths Ian Moir or take a picture of it and post it on social media and mention @BDS_SA and encourage other people to join the Boycott Woolworths Campaign until franchise ends all ties with Israel,” says Kekana.

“We see 40 to 50 actions people participating in different actions to take up the campaign to make the National Day of Action. This can be in the form of picketing outside Woolworth stores or venting via social media.”

In August 2014 a call for the complete boycott of Woolworths until it ends its Israeli trade links was made by BDS South Africa, COSATU, ANC Youth League, MJC, YCL and various others including the National Coalition 4 Palestine (a coalition consisting of more than 30 organizations, trade unions and other groups).

“However, withdrawing consumer support from Woolworths is just one part of the larger #BoycottWoolworths campaign. Join the NC4P, BDS South Africa and various South African civil society groups on the last Saturday Day of the month in the Monthly #BoycottWoolworths National Day of Action by organizing or joining a picket, protest, flashmob or other action,” says Kekana.

She added: “Woolworths has refused to make available the Israeli suppliers that it sources its products from. Sadly, Woolworths also refused for several months to meet with the NC4P, BDS South Africa and other organizers of the #BoycottWoolworths campaign. However, sources from within Woolworths have indicated that the company is feeling the impact of the campaign both at a PR level and on a financial level.” VOC

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