Why Pharrell Williams’ concert in Cape Town was protested

Pharrell Williams
Source: Youtube/FutureVEVO

Almost 500 people convened in front of the GrandWest Casino in Cape Town, South Africa, recently to protest a performance by Pharrell Williams.

Led by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel movement, the group set out to voice their displeasure with Williams for his connection to Woolworths, a South African retailer that reportedly has ties to Israel.


Williams currently serves as style director and works with the company in their efforts to raise funds for education.

“By working with Woolworths, Pharrell supports Israel, a country that supports the oppression of Palestine, a country that is the new apartheid state,” said protester Ashraf Salie.


Protesters chanted and held up signs that read, “Pharrell is welcome if Gaza is free” and “Pharrell and Woolworths have blood on their hands.”

Woolworth’s maintains that it does not get goods from the Israeli-controlled areas of Palestine and that less than 0.1 percent of its food comes from Israel.

Despite the protesting going on outside, Pharrell’s performance continued on as planned without a hitch.

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