Port Elizabeth – A livid Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane has called the ANC critics of his speech in Dobsonville over the weekend “desperate swindlers and liars”.
Maimane was looking to set the record straight after he came under fire this week after he was quoted in media saying he had voted for former president Nelson Mandela.
He had been speaking during the party’s rally at the Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto, his hometown, where he mentioned voting for the ANC.
Addressing media at the Donkin in Nelson Mandela Bay, with a symbolic statue of the former president in the background, the DA leader said it was common in politics for an opponent to blatantly twist words in order to further their own ends.
“It’s clear that as we are growing in every community in this country, that it has brought with it a deep discomfort for our opponents. In their desperate ploy, they have gone out of their way to misquote me,” he said on Tuesday.
Maimane said it was a tactic to misquote him, part of a racially divisive campaign run by his opponents.
“They invest their time in spewing of lies, and being divisive to the people of this country, and spewing worst kind of racism. It is important that we set the record straight. I am a proud patriot of this country. I support the values of Tata Mandela,” he said.
Since his speech, the DA leader has been the butt of twitter jokes, with the #ThingsMmusiDid trending on Monday.
From being the thing that turned salt into aromat to driving the Cressida when Mandela was released from jail, South Africans poked fun at Maimane’s politics.
He was also accused of lying, as the leader was only 14 at the time of the first democratic elections.
Maimane, however, said on Tuesday read an extract of his speech, and said he wanted to set the record straight.
“There are certain ministers who are swindlers, liars, who fail to understand the basics in reading a statement. I never said I voted in 1994. I voted in 1999. We voted . . . for the party of Nelson Mandela. We did it for Madiba.”
He said he would hate for the people of South Africa to be deceived by the ANC.
“It’s a ploy on the part of swindlers and corrupt people who don’t have a future for South Africa and a vision to offer that they must come out now and make up lies,” he said.
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