Helen Zille, chairperson of the Democratic Alliance’s Federal Executive Committee, former DA leader and erstwhile premier of the Western Cape, has announced that she will be closing her Twitter account.
The veteran politician has frequently courted controversy through her tweets.
Zille wrote: ‘Twitter has degenerated into a platform for irrationality and mob-lynching. Everything that can be distorted and twisted for a hate-filled agenda, is used for the purpose of manufacturing outrage and inflicting maximum damage.’
‘Instead of democratising debate,’ she added, ‘it has severely curtailed freedom of speech and discussion. It emboldens your enemies and silences your friends. It is a space where the best lack all conviction and the worst are full of passionate intensity, as Yeats so aptly put it.’
Her decision stemmed from a tweet she had posted of her granddaughter Nceba helping to prepare food. Numerous users had inferred racism, and suggested that she was perpetuating stereotypes of black women as domestic workers.
She said that she would be starting a closed Twitter account, for people ‘interested in rational debate only.’