Black First Land First (BLF) president Andile Mngxitama’s Twitter account has been suspended for seven days over his “kill whites” threats.
Mngxitama’s series of tweets on Sunday threatening that he and his followers would kill white people and their pets were reported by enough people to get his account suspended, while others renewed calls for him to be prosecuted for hate speech.
It seems he acted too late when he deleted a video he posted on Twitter of him saying he would kill five white people for every black person killed in the taxi industry as Twitter picked up that, as well as other comments he’d made, as “hateful conduct”.
The BLF leader, however, said that he had been speaking in the context of “self-defence” and was being misunderstood and taken out of that supposed context.
“White people have convinced themselves that they can unleash violence upon blacks and blacks have no right to fight back. Fighting back is considered a viilation of the sanctity of whiteness.”
In fact, Mngxitama said it was “rubbish” that whites were calling for his Twitter account to be shut down.
“Can you believe it? Whites believe we have no right to self defence.”
The BLF’s deputy president, Zanele Lwana, has criticised Twitter for suspending Mngxitama’s account, saying she saw nothing wrong with his tweets.
“The only sin committed by BLF president is defending black people. President Mngxitama correctly stated that for every one black life taken, five whites would be taken!”
The Independent Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) has also said it would wait for the party’s clarification before taking action, though many South Africans have called on the IEC to just ban the BLF from contesting elections.
It said: “We note the serious allegations against the BLF’s leader. The Commission will offer the party an opportunity to clarify its statements in the light of the values of the Constitution. We will assess the matter for an appropriate course of action after receiving a response.”
The Congress of the People (Cope) has also laid criminal charges “for hate speech and incitement to commit violence against white members of society”.
The party said: “SA must never for once tolerate any leader of a political party to behave in such criminal manner without consequences. No amount of political intolerance and threats of violence must be allowed to permeate political discourse in a constitutional democracy.”
The DA said it would be reporting Mngxitama to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and the Equality Court.
“Further to this, the DA North West Provincial Leader, Joe McGluwa, will lay charges against Mngxitima for incitement of imminent violence. We cannot allow Mngxitama’s comments and actions to go unchallenged,” it said.