Prominent businesswoman Wendy Luhabe, the wife of former Gauteng premier and Cope founder Mbhazima Shilowa, has been slammed for a tweet in which she appears to express her view that conditions under apartheid were favourable to under democracy.
“I grew up and started my career under apartheid and we had a much better work ethic, we were responsible for our lives understandably … these attributes have been replaced by a culture of entitlement and dependency since we became a democracy,” Luhabe tweeted.
Many found the tweet offensive, with some calling Luhabe a “BEE elite” who was one of a few who benefited from the government’s empowerment policies.
Journalist and TV and radio personality Tim Modise was slammed by one Twitter user as similarly being among “BEE beneficiaries” after a tweet he put out was considered by some to be similar to Luhabe’s.
Modise tweeted: “The victimhood mentality pervading our society has shackled the agency that should come with freedom. The evidence of dependency syndrome and opportunism, incompetence, and corruption are visible. Future generations will pay the price for our irresponsibility.”
A number of users on Twitter have compared Luhabe’s views to Western Cape premier Helen Zille’s tweets on colonialism.
Zille tweeted last year: “For those claiming that the legacy of colonialism was only negative, they should look at various aspects of South Africa’s development, such as the judiciary and other infrastructure.”
Her tweets were met with a heavy backlash leading to Zille facing disciplinary action from her own party.
The DA’s federal council ruled that while she would continue her duties as Western Cape premier, she would not be allowed to participate in party matters.