Colonialism can never be justified - DA

2017-03-16 14:26
Helen Zille (Supplied)

Helen Zille (Supplied)

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Cape Town – The Democratic Alliance on Thursday said colonialism, like apartheid, was wrong and could never be justified.

DA national spokesperson Phumzile van Damme distanced the party from a tweet former leader Helen Zille posted on Thursday, which was interpreted as a defence of colonialism.

"Colonialism, like apartheid, was wrong. It oppressed millions of people and violated human rights in a cruel and inhumane way," Van Damme said.

She said colonialism was, in every single way, against the party's "cherished" values of freedom, fairness and opportunity for all.

Van Damme repeated that DA leader Mmusi Maimane had referred Zille to a federal commission for possibly violating the party's social media policy.

"Ms Zille has already issued an unreserved apology for her tweet," Van Damme said.

 - READ: Helen Zille does quick about-turn on 'colonialism' defence

On Thursday morning while at the airport, the former DA leader had the country – and most Democratic Alliance leaders – up in arms when she tweeted: "For those claiming legacy of colonialism was ONLY negative, think of our independent judiciary, transport infrastructure, piped water etc."

She then tweeted: "Getting onto an aeroplane now and won't get onto the Wi-Fi so that I can cut off those who think EVERY aspect of colonial legacy was bad."

It was barely an hour later when the premier had to retract the statement after it caused an uproar on social media, with some calling for her to not come back to the country.

"I apologise unreservedly for a tweet that may have come across as a defence of colonialism. It was not," she then tweeted.

Zille was dragged over the coals on Twitter.

Read more on:    da  |  helen zille  |  phumzile van damme  |  racism  |  social media

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