Cape Town - Pagad has called on people to boycott Burger King. The People Against Gangsterism and Drugs claim the owners of the local franchise behind the fast food giant are of “questionable morality”.
Grand Parade Investments (GPI) - which is a stakeholder of Grandwest Casino - is the parent company of Burger King SA. Cape Town businessman Hassen Adams is the founder and director of Grand Parade Investments.
Pagad spokesman Osman Sahib tells the Daily Voice: “Pagad calls on people not to support Burger King because the owner is directly involved with gambling. For the same reason we ask our people not to support GrandWest Casino or go into liquor stores, we want people to avoid Burger King.
“Gambling does not make people rich, they only get poorer.”
Grand Parade Investments has a 30 percent stake in SunWest, the owner of GrandWest Casino. GPI also holds stakes in Worcester’s Golden Valley Casino and limited pay out machine operations across SA. It also holds a 30.6 percent stake in Real Africa Holdings, giving it a share in Gauteng’s Carnival City Casino & Entertainment World, KwaZulu-Natal’s Sibaya Casino & Entertainment Kingdom, and the Eastern Cape’s Boardwalk Casino & Entertainment World.
Adams last year bought the African Burger King franchise for R9.1 million.
Sahib says any profits made from gambling operations is haraam [forbidden according to Islamic law].
“I must make it clear that this is not a personal attack on Adams because he is Muslim, but because of what he represents,” he says.
“We are not only speaking on behalf of Muslims, Pagad represents all people who stand for justice and morality. However, Muslims know that when there is doubt about the morality of something, they must refrain from it.
“Adams has built his entire business by investing in gambling and casinos, something which is outright forbidden - not only in Islam, but also Christianity.”
Sahib also condemned the organisation that granted Burger King restaurant halaal status.
“We are questioning the halaal body that granted the certificate knowing that Adams represents an institution of Satan. Are our halaal bodies now just there to fill their own pockets at the expense of the Muslim public?” he asks.
The Islamic Council of South Africa, which certified Burger King halaal, defended their action.
“People are making the mistake of judging Mr Adams about his business dealings because he is Muslim,” said ICSA Operations Manager and food technologist Aabied Akhewari.
“We are not certifying Mr Adams or Grand Parade Investments, we are certifying Burger King, and that store belongs to the Burger King franchise in South Africa.
“Our main aim is to certify the food the business is selling is halaal. People must remember... many owners of franchises are not Muslim. If a Muslim wants to walk into Burger King, they can be 100 percent certain that the food they are buying is halaal.”
Adams was not available to comment by the time of going to print on Thursday night.