South African Politician Helen Zille is Again Defending Colonialism
Repetition does not a valid point make, Helen.
Former Democratic Alliance (DA) leader and Western Cape Premier, Helen Zille, is back to defending her comments on colonialism on social media. Needless to say, South Africans are neither impressed nor surprised.
In 2017, Zille came under heavy fire from not only the South African public but opposition political parties as well as her own political party after she tweeted that the legacy of colonialism wasn't all that bad. Zille refused to apologize and instead dug in her heels, insisting that she had made a clear distinction between the system of colonialism and its legacy. Zille pointed out that the infrastructure that was developed during the colonial era was a positive thing.
For those claiming legacy of colonialism was ONLY negative, think of our independent judiciary, transport infrastructure, piped water etc.— Helen Zille (@Helen Zille) 1489645535.0
@MogaleMaeko I didn't say anything like that. Colonnialism was TERRIBLE. But its LEGACY is not ONLY negative. If… https://t.co/dNgbnvUCqy— Helen Zille (@Helen Zille) 1554439972.0
Comments made by the likes of Zille, who still has considerable socio-political influence, are dangerous. In what may appear to be an intellectually sound argument (for some and certainly for Zille) is in actual fact a fallacy. Effectively, what Zille implies is that although colonialism was "terrible", South Africans should look at the bright side because they now have things they otherwise would not have had.
Although Zille's tweets about colonialism were investigated by the South African Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, and found to have violated the Constitution, a prominent law expert argued that her decision was flawed and would probably be put aside following a review by the relevant courts.