DA defends Mashaba on sanitary towels, foreign nationals remarks

2019-01-17 16:14
City of Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba.

City of Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba. (Ntwaagae Seleka)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

The Democratic Alliance has denied that Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba is a "loose cannon", instead coming to his defence with regards to his latest controversial statements on sanitary towels and foreign nationals.

Mashaba came under fire on Twitter, as well as from the ANC, after he suggested that the distribution of sanitary pads to Grade R learners at schools made children "focus on sex". This was after Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane distributed the products at Mandosi Combined School. 

Mashaba has also come under fire on several occasions for statements he has made about foreign nationals, which have been criticised for being xenophobic.

READ: Mashaba must stop shaming menstruating girls - Joburg ANC

But DA federal chairperson Athol Trollip said Mashaba had done great things, "and they say a tallest tree collect the most wind".

He said what Mashaba had meant in his tweets was that learning materials were a priority for schoolchildren, and not sanitary pads.

"There is a picture today of Mokonyane giving pads to young girls and boys. That is typical of ANC delivery. The ANC delivers what they think you need and not what you need. Clearly Grade R learners and boys do not need sanitary pads. They need shoes, textbooks, bags and pens and learner support materials.

"What Mashaba was basically saying was that, instead of coming to schools and giving young children pads, give them what they need," Trollip said.

Xenophobia

In response to Mashaba's tweet, Mokonyane tweeted that the sanitary towels weren't meant for the Grade R children. 

Trollip also dismissed accusations that some of Mashaba’s statements on foreign nationals promoted xenophobia, and that the party had failed to rein him in.

Trollip was speaking to News24 during his visit to Limpopo on Thursday to kickstart the party’s election campaign, which will focus mainly on porous borders, rural crime and poverty, and corruption.

Addressing the media in Polokwane, he said the farming community was already marginalised and vulnerable to crime and poverty. This was worsened by the collapse of the rural economy in provinces such as Limpopo.

"We believe the relationship between a farmer and farmworker has been destroyed inadvertently. Some pieces of legislations such as the land tenure rights and minimum wage are very good, but have some unintended consequences.

Porous borders

"For example, the government does not give recognition to an employer who feeds the employees. We also have a situation in which we have people who look after sheep, but have never tasted mutton, people who milk cattle but never drink milk, and people who look after beef animals but have never seen beef on their plate," he said.

Trollip also described border posts in the province as "the most porous in the country". He said sovereign security was a critical issue for the safety of the people in the country, and also for bio-safety.

"Recently, we saw the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease, which has a devastating consequence on the meat producers.

"Animals come and go through our borders as they please, people come and go as they please and they have illegal trade and they smuggle stuff across our borders. They come here undocumented and they have access to our state services. The greatest challenge to our country is the porous borders."

DA Limpopo leader Jacques Smalle, who recently had an oversight visit to the border posts said none of them, except the Beit Bridge in Musina, had scanners which means "anything can pass through".

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  johannesburg  |  politics  |  health
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.