The Citizen reported on Wednesday that Black First Land First (BLF) leader Andile Mngxitama was back on Twitter following a week-long suspension, and had changed his handle to @MngxitamaAndile. We can now report that the revived account didn’t make it through its first day – it was shut down again in the afternoon. BLF spokesperson Lindsay Maasdorp said this time – it’s permanent.
Mysteriously, this time around he appears to have been banned without overtly breaking any of Twitter’s content rules. Those rules can be found here.
BLF spokesperson Lindsay Maasdorp said they received a complaint for a tweet saying only “Black people, I am back on Twitter”. Why this would have led to a suspension is unclear.
However, the party did make a reference to Mngxitama’s massively controversial statement made at a rally in Potchefstroom and shared by Mngxitama in a video on Twitter that was later deleted, stating that BLF would kill five white people for every black person killed.
This comment drew massive outrage, was condemned in a statement by the ANC, and saw charges laid against Mngxitama by organisations including the DA, Cope, AfriForum and Steve Hofmeyr on behalf of his new organisation ToekomsVolk. Hofmeyr arrived at the Brooklyn police station accompanied by Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota.
While the comment was not repeated on Twitter by Mngxitama, he did tweet that he “will continue to do the work that they tried to stop us from doing – that is, to tell them there is a new ratio, one to five, they know what I mean … and we are ready for it”.
It appears there was lobbying for the account to be shut down, with calls for it to be reported.
“They sent this, then blocked permanently. As you can see there’s no reason for blocking. So one can only assume its deliberate, fascistic, and BLF, particularly president Andile, is being targeted and silenced,” Maasdorp said.
The organisation also released a statement.
“The racist fascist Twitter platform has decided president Mngxitama must not be given an iota of space, noting that his black radical voice carries the power to liberate the black oppressed.
“BLF president did not make it to one day and despite this short time, his tweets were interacted with close to 100k times achieving over 30k views alone on his welcome back video.
“BLF warns white monopoly capital and the fascists of Twitter, president Mngxitama has given his life to preaching black truth, nothing can stop the black prophet.”
The statement ends with yet another reference to the one in five comment, which appears to be becoming a party slogan.
“BLF won’t stop, the message is clear, 1:5!”