What are Witches going to do about the Press Ombudsman ?
South African Press Ombudsman Joe Thloloe denies the right to dignity to an entire religious minority.
Has it once more become acceptable to use the prejudicial synonym ‘Jew’ for ‘stingy’ ? No, because we accept an automatic assumption that real Jews might be offended should they be stereotyped as miserly.
The South African Press Ombudsman Joe Thloloe however is of the view that even in cases of non-fiction, it is permissible to portray a witch (any witch) as a murderer, in the South African media, whether or not the person so being portrayed is a real Witch.
In accordance with this view the Ombudsman has ruled that the Sunday Tribune has the right to call convicted murderer Charne van Heerden ‘the Welkom witch’, even though there is absolutely no evidence to suggest that she was or is a real Witch. 
Thloloe’s ruling is based, in part, on his tacit acceptance of an assumed common use meaning of the word ‘witch’. In his mind ‘a witch’ is without question a morally ambivalent individual quite capable of being assumed murderously dangerous to people around her.
What he fails to realize is that the stereotypical meaning he has embraced as literal common usage is actually the defamatory product of a careful preserved historical fabrication – a fiction.
Thloloe is unwittingly guilty of promoting prejudice against real Witches, based on nothing more than historical fantasy.
Real Witches, which he condescendingly calls “self-styled”, are regarded by Thloloe as attempting to use the office of the Ombudsman to proselytize their religion, not defend their collective right to dignity. According to the Press Ombudsman, any notion that actual Witches should wish to appeal against the defamatory stereotyping of witches in the South African media is ridiculous and can never merit anything but contemptuous scorn. 
“Witches in South Africa are members of a minority faith which has been much maligned and persecuted during the course of global history. For this reason, SAPRA finds the use of the term “witch” to describe a woman who murdered and dismembered a man to be an unacceptable slander to the actual practice of Witchcraft in South Africa. ”
Christa Martin, executive member of the South African Pagan Rights Alliance (SAPRA) who lodged a complaint against the Sunday Tribune’s headline.
Understand this decision within the larger societal context in which South African Witches find themselves, including frequent incidences of witch-hunts in virtually every province, and you’ll begin to understand the pervasive institutionalized bias that exists against witchcraft and actual Witches in this country. 
The South African media is enjoined by both state and industry to uphold commonly accepted ethical standards, to treat all people fairly and justly,  but institutional bias within the South African media against witchcraft easily excuses greedy exception to the rule when witches are used as a literary tool merely so that an editor and journalist can ridicule and judge a convicted murderer.
How do we educate journalists, editors and ombudsmen who hold a predetermined bias against witchcraft and Witches? When the South African media simply refuses to give the subject any serious coverage at all for fear of accidentally proselytizing the unwelcomed stereotype in the flesh, how does a religious minority make its voice heard ?
As long as ‘the Witch’ remains nothing more than a fantasy, a literary device of prejudice, a synonym to describe a depraved criminal, or a murderous accusation, real people who actually identify themselves as Witches will continue to be denied their right to dignity, equality and justice in South Africa.
What are you going to do about it ?
 Sunday Tribune front page article entitled “Graveyard Monster: In the footsteps of the Welkom witch” dated November 27 2011
 Press Ombudsman ruling (2009): Mr Damon Leff, Director of the South African Pagan Rights Alliance, vs Various Publications
 South African Pagan Rights Alliance NGO Stakeholder Submission to the United Nations Officer of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Universal Periodic Review entitled ‘South African government ignores victims of witch-hunts’.
 South African Press Code
New press code released | 10 October, 2011