Kohler Barnard in hot water over Facebook post
Cape Town - Be very careful about what you share on Facebook or tweet on Twitter.
DA spokeswoman of police, Dianne Kohler Barnard, learnt this lesson the hard way after she shared a post on Facebook by political journalist Paul Kirk on September 15, which included the line: “Please come back PW Botha”.
Her Facebook post was then apparently screen grabbed and tweeted by somebody, causing outrage and going viral. She now faces a disciplinary hearing with her party.
The post read: “And so the new head of the Hawks – found to be without integrity and dishonest by the high court – has suspended ace detective Johan Booysen over a typing error. This is a bloody circus. Please come back PW Botha – you were far more honest than any of these ANC rogues, and you provided far better services to the public – we had a functioning education system, functioning health system and the police did not murder miners on behalf of government toadies as they do now.”
On Thursday morning Kohler Barnard said she had shared many posts before by journalists. “I share a lot of posts and responses by journalists, I didn’t read through the post by Paul Kirk and therefore didn’t realise he was on a rant.”
She said she only read the whole post after she got a call from a colleague who asked her if she had read what she shared.
“I removed it immediately after I saw what he was saying. It was an idiotic move from my side, I should have read it through, and I regret it.”
Kohler Barnard said somebody had decided to screen grab the post and shared it on Twitter two weeks later. “Now I’m faced with disciplinary action with the DA.”
But some on Twitter remain unconvinced by her excuse.
@EsethuHasane said, because you’re white it’s easy for you to miss PW Botha in a statement, he pops out.
@oliver_meth said this is arb! Do you share the same sentiments as Paul Kirk?
@IamKhanyiso wrote “Please come back PW Botha…” you expect us to believe you missed that?
Kohler Barnard tweeted an apology saying: “I apologise unreservedly for sharing a post on FB in the midst of which the author praised PW Botha. I erased it immediately I realised.”
DA national leader Mmusi Maimane wrote on Twitter: “The post by @DKB is indefensible. She has withdrawn it and apologised; now our internal disciplinary processes will be dealing with this.”