Johannesburg - DA leader Helen Zille has not distanced herself from a DA-supporting Twitter message that likened ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe to a Nazi.
An apparently DA-supporting Twitter user using the handle @Blow_Back_Time tweeted Zille and party spokesman Gavin Davis: “@helenzille @gavdavis This is the real face of Gwede Mantashe.”
The tweet contained a photo of Adolf Hitler wearing a swastika armband, next to a picture of Mantashe, the ANC’s secretary-general.
A swastika was photo-shopped on to the lapel of Mantashe’s jacket.
Hitler led the German Nazi party from 1921 until his suicide in 1945.
He was a proponent of race-based supremacy.
As dictator of Nazi Germany he was responsible for the murder of millions of Russians, 6 million Jews as well as Roma, black people, homosexuals, communists and political opponents.
The ANC was not fazed by the depiction of Mantashe.
ANC spokeswoman Khusela Sangoni said: “We have seen opposition parties stooping to unprecedented lows in an effort to discredit the ANC in this campaign, because they have nothing to offer the electorate. They resort to falsifying information, unjustified claims and downright lies like in the photo you are referring to.”
In an e-mail, Zille dismissed queries over the tweet as “entirely pathetic”.
“One of the ANC’s MPs put something on her Facebook describing me directly as Hitler. That is why I said the tweet was ironic. I think we should absolutely ignore it. If you see what people call me on Twitter – you can see what a double standard this is.”
IEC spokeswoman Kate Bapela said no political parties had yet engaged the election watchdog with any complaints about the comments. - The Sunday Independent