NEWS

Helen Zille Is Being Charged Over Those Tweets About Colonialism

The DA says she is charged with bringing the party into disrepute and damaging its reputation.

12/04/2017 19:40 SAST | Updated 13/04/2017 05:54 SAST
Sumaya Hisham / Reuters
Helen Zille.

The Democratic Alliance has formally charged Western Cape Premier Helen Zille for her remarks on colonialism, News24 reported on Wednesday.

Federal chairperson James Selfe told News24: "Helen Zille received her charges this afternoon. She is charged with having broadly brought the party into disrepute and damaging the party."

Zille's political career is in doubt following a series of tweets on March 16, from which the DA quickly distanced itself with party leader Mmusi Maimane saying she had brought the party into disrepute and made matters worse by further comments since the original tweets.

One of her tweets read: "For those claiming legacy of colonialism was ONLY negative, think of our independent judiciary, transport infrastructure, piped water etc."

A second tweet reads: "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."

She later apologised, saying she never intended to defend colonialism.

It comes after the Democratic Alliance's Federal Legal Commission (FLC) said there was a case to answer.

Selfe said a date for a formal hearing would be set following consultation with Zille's lawyers, a process which could take several months.

Zille is a member of the federal executive, but the DA said she would be excused when the report against her is discussed.