Zille and MPL in virtual spat
DA LEADER Helen Zille and KwaZulu-Natal MPL Mbali Ntuli took their party’s internal differences to social media at the weekend, with Twitter and Facebook users joining the virtual brawl.
The fight started after Zille reacted negatively to a Facebook post in which Ntuli said: “(KwaZulu-Natal) Premier (Senzo) Mchunu has just come up to me to thank the DA for their contribution to the debate. Promised a meeting where we can table more input.”
Zille commented: “Sounds as if you think this is a compliment.”
There have been previous reports of animosity between Zille and Ntuli, who resigned as leader of the DA youth after complaining about being frustrated by the national leadership.
Ntuli posted her Facebook message after she was involved in debate on youth issues during a sitting of the KZN legislature last week.
At the weekend, social media were abuzz with differences between the two. Some social network users – including journalists, gender-rights organisation leaders and political party leaders such as the EFF’s Julius Malema – attacked Zille.
Ntuli did not take Zille’s reaction lying down. “It is not about me, Helen. (The) DA policy I represented was recognised by the premier as valuable to helping young ppl (people). That’s what matters.
“In the end, it would be great if the premier took our suggestions and used them to help young people in KZN just like in WC,” she said. Zille, the premier of the Western Cape, said: “It depends on who is complementing what, doesn’t it?”
Malema took a swipe at Zille. “If you have nothing better to do wena Helen, look for Bible and go to church,” he tweeted.
Sisonke Msimang of Sonke Gender Justice said: “TRYING to humiliate her but @mbalimcdust is too much of a pro to be baited.”
Former government spokesman Jimmy Manyi told Zille she should have phoned Ntuli instead of humiliating her in public.
Mail & Guardian reporter Sam Sole said Zille’s comment was unbecoming.
“Your lack of generosity is self-destructive,” he said.
Nolutha0209 said: “Mbali et al will soon know like Lindiwe did that the DA is no home for a black person with brain.”
The DA leader in the eThekwini municipality, Zwakele Mncwango, tried to divert the noise to the ANC.
“Asikhule ngezithi (let us talk about) ANC caucus (that) is divided in eThekwini council.”
Later, Zille backed down and congratulated Ntuli. “Well done, Mbali! You had a huge impact and I am hearing a great deal about it.”