Zindzi Mandela brazens it out with Twitter comeback after backlash

19 June 2019 - 07:59 By ernest mabuza
The DA claims that Zindzi Mandela's comments contravened the code of conduct for the public office she occupies.
The DA claims that Zindzi Mandela's comments contravened the code of conduct for the public office she occupies.
Image: Roberto Ricciuti/Getty Images

South Africa's ambassador to Denmark Zindzi Mandela is inviting further engagement from social media users over her controversial remarks on land.

"I am back from my trip and will take a stroll down Twitter streets... Thank you #OurLand," she tweeted on Tuesday evening. She had last tweeted on Friday.

One of Mandela's earlier tweets read: "Dear Apartheid Apologists, your time is over. You will not rule again. We do not fear you. Finally #TheLandIsOurs"

She added that she would not answer to those who disagreed with her. "I am not accountable to any white man or woman for my personal views. No missus or baas here. Get over yourselves #OurLand," she tweeted.

While some have criticised her for her potentially divisive comments, others have supported her.

The EFF and BLF on Tuesday defended her, after AfriForum called for her removal from office.

The EFF dismissed AfriForum's calls, saying Mandela had every right to air her views on the land issue while the BLF lambasted AfriForum for attempting to "censor" Mandela for holding unorthodox views. 

The DA's shadow minister of international relations, Darren Bergman, said Mandela's comments were a contravention of the code of conduct for the public office she occupies.

"If it is confirmed that ambassador Mandela was the author of the divisive tweets and that she did not receive approval to express these views or to travel. She must be recalled immediately.

"In the meantime, the DA has sent urgent questions to minister (Naledi) Pandor asking whether the views of ambassador Mandela are also the views of the South African government.

"The Democratic Alliance recognises that the reconciliation project in South Africa has stalled over the past decade. The progress we had made since 1994 has halted, leading to many South Africans feeling they don’t have a stake in democratic South Africa."

Responding to the calls for Mandela's recall, minister of international relations and cooperation Naledi Pandor said her department was currently trying to find out exactly what the source of these tweets is and what occasioned the need to respond in the way the ambassador had done.

 “We have a social media policy as the department and it’s absolutely imperative that all diplomats observe the policy.

 “Once we have established whether this is genuinely a tweet or set of remarks from her, we will be able to assess whether the comments are in compliance with our social media policy,” Pandor told eNCA on Tuesday.

Her spokesperson Lunga Ngqengelele told the Sowetan that the department was still trying to verify the authenticity of the tweets and a number of people within the department had been trying to get hold of Mandela to verify if she tweeted these comments.