DA leader Helen Zille had harsh words for the media on Friday for
"manufacturing a major row" this week between her and the African
National Congress, according to a report in Business Day.
Zille, who has been involved in a spat with the ANC over her all-male executive in the Western Cape, said she had been quoted "entirely out of context" on comments she made about President Jacob Zuma placing his three wives at risk of contracting HIV.
"When various ANC affiliates use the most vile sexist slurs against me various commentators seek to establish a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢moral equivalenceÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ between our contesting positions by quoting — entirely out of context, one sentence from the middle of a letter I wrote to a newspaper responding to ANC attacks," she wrote in her weekly newsletter.
"In this way the media can accuse us equally of ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢mud-slingingÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢ and ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢descending into the gutterÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢. They can also manufacture a ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢major rowÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢, as if both sides, equally, are spoiling for a fight." She accused commentators and the media of "hunting in their customary pack".
"They have swallowed whole the ANCÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s narrative that filling quotas is the most important criterion for establishing a government. They are now trying to force me to sing the same tune." She was surprised that the "male gender commissioner" had remained silent about "the extreme sexism" shown to her by the ANC Youth League and Umkhonto we Sizwe War Veterans Association.
Click here to read the full report, posted on Business Day's website.