IOL - CAPE TIMES / 25 JUNE 2020 - 08.04 / BONGANI HANS AND FRANCESCA VILLETTE
Cape Town – DA Federal Council chairperson Helen Zille’s controversial apartheid-related tweet has been referred to party structures to determine whether she has breached its rules or regulations.
Opposition parties have, in the meantime, reacted harshly, and labelled Zille a racist.
DA Federal Council chairperson Helen Zille. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
Zille had posted on her Twitter page that “had it not been for former president FW de Klerk dismantling the apartheid regime, the ANC would still be bogged down in the mess of its so-called liberation camps and infighting".
“They (ANC) had no viable armed Struggle to speak of.”
The former Western Cape premier also wrote: “Lol, there are more racist laws today than there were under apartheid. All racist laws are wrong. But permanent victimhood is too highly prized to recognise this."
The party’s interim leader, John Steenhuisen, yesterday said: “Helen has referred her tweet to the party structures to determine whether she has breached any rules or regulations of the party.
"Helen also made the comment that there are more racist laws now than there were under apartheid. This is not true and I can’t see any evidence for it.”
ANC spokesperson Dakota Legoete yesterday called on the DA to discipline Zille.
Legoete said Zille, whom he described as suffering a “hangover of white supremacy agenda”, was a reflection of the DA’s state of affairs.
“The action must be taken by the DA itself, if it does not represent the interest of white supremacy.
“They must discipline her because she is their leader and what she says represents their policy position, because the position she holds now in the DA is equivalent to the secretary-general in the ANC, which is not a small position,” he said.
EFF member Mbuyiseni Ndlozi wrote on Twitter: “There is more racism in Helen Zille’s head than there were racist laws under apartheid!”.
Zille did not answer her phone or respond to questions sent to her through WhatsApp and SMS.
Political scientist at the University of the Western Cape, Keith Gottschalk said Zille’s comment must be seen as part of DA protests against affirmative action and BBBEE statutes.
“These do have a tension between the non-racial vision of our Constitution and what the late Kadar Asmal called ‘corrective action’.”
He said South Africa was not the only democracy to negotiate complexities between AA and BBBEE.
“The world’s largest democracy, India, has ‘reservations’ for Dalits and ‘scheduled castes and Other Backward Classes’.
“The world’s oldest democracy, the USA, has affirmative action, and tender preference for ‘minority-owned businesses’,” Gottschalk said.
Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER