Nelson Mandela’s PA for twenty years, Zelda La Grange, has caused a Twitter storm by posting racially sensitive comments on her Twitter account.
It came as a huge surprise to many when a series of messages from Ms LaGrange’s Twitter account, which has just over 55,000 followers, appeared to downplay the effects of apartheid and colonisation on the majority of South Africans.
In one message she wrote: “If I was a white investor I would more or less leave now. It’s very clear from Jacob Zuma whites are not wanted or needed in South Africa”
This message was retweeted at least 463 times and it was favoured 134 times.
Ms Le Grange was reacting to a speech by President Jacob Zuma in which he said that South Africa’s problems started in 1652 when Dutch settlers led by Jan Van Riebeeck landed on the Cape of Good Hope.
For a brief period Zelda La Grange changed her Twitter name to Zelda Van Riebeeck.
The messages created an uproar with black social commentators.
Talk show host Redi Tlhabi, one of many who weighed in on the spat, shot back with: “It is not white taxes that have built Nkandla. It is South African taxes. White, black…”
The governing African National Congress called La Grange “a spoilt white person”.
In her apology Ms La Grange posted: “Colonisation was a terrible thing that happened to our country but I cannot erase it, no-one can. Apologies for glamorizing it”.