Daniel Friedman
2 minute read
20 Mar 2019
12:07 pm

Ernst Roets and Ntsiki Mazwai tell each other to go back to ‘Holland’ and ‘Cameroon’

Daniel Friedman

A twar between the AfriForum deputy CEO and the poet got ugly.

AfriForum's Ernst Roets (lef) and poet Ntsiki Mazwai.

Two outspoken South African voices on opposite sides of the political spectrum – AfriForum deputy CEO Ernst Roets and poet Ntsiki Mazwai – were engaged in a twar on Wednesday morning.

It appears to have started when Mazwai reacted to a statement from the minority lobby group accusing MTN of racism for their decision to pull out as sponsors of the upcoming Afrikaans is Groot festival due to the inclusion of Steve Hofmeyr on the line-up.

The statement, titled “AfriForum declares dispute with MTN over alleged racism”, inspired Mazwai to say to Roets: “When are you going back to holland Ernest? [sic] I don’t get the sense that you’re welcome here. Respect yourself and go back home.”

READ MORE: AfriForum accuses MTN of ‘racism’ for pulling out of Steve Hofmeyr concert

“When are you going back to Cameroon?” was the AfriForum deputy CEO’s response.

The two continued to argue with each other, with Mazwai telling Roets that he should learn the history of Africa and its “indigenous people”, who “actually BELONG here”. She added that she believed that in “other African countries, whites were escorted to their ships”, adding that she also believed this would “happen here too” one day.

“Is your logic on white and black people in Africa also applicable in reverse to Europe? Should black Europeans ‘go back to Africa’? If so, that would be very racist of you,” was Roets’ reply.

An hour after the twar died down Mazwai took to Twitter and said: “Don’t you ever forget: WHITES LIE!!!!” Whether or not this was a response to her feud with Roets is unclear.

The statement that started it all saw AfriForum accusing MTN of “racism” for pulling out of the upcoming Afrikaans is Groot festival as sponsors due to Steve Hofmeyr’s inclusion on the line-up.

The lobby group’s argument appears to be that MTN’s decision to pull out was because it “does not support the personal views of one of the artists performing at the music festival”, and that this means MTN must by default support the views of everyone in the EFF and ANC – two parties the lobby group accuses of racism – as MTN allegedly “sponsors” these two parties.

MTN clarified that rather than sponsor either party, they have given campaign donations to a range of parties proportionate to their representation in the National Assembly.

“These donations are not brand-marketing sponsorships, they serve completely different functions and it is incorrect to compare the two disparate activities.”

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