The profile of a white woman named @TracyZille who apparently makes racist remarks towards black people is not genuine.
The Digital Forensic Research Lab recently revealed that Anthony Matumba, an EFF councilor from Limpopo, apparently sits behind this Twitter profile and also makes money from the clickbait he places on the platform.
Following the revelation, Matumba was reported to the South African Human Rights Commission for inciting racial tensions, and the DA demanded that he be suspended.
The Tracy Zille profile, which has already attracted more than 40,000 followers, is a telling example of all the reasons why someone would create and spread fake news: To evoke emotion, to sow hatred, to joke, for political reasons and to make money.
In June this year, a middle-aged woman with auburn hair and blue eyes appeared out of nowhere and showed the Twitterati red with racist remarks such as “Dear Black Women, stop spending your hard-earned money on our old hair […] Van you spend a lot of money to bleach your skins to look like us ”. Along with the provocative statement, a link was posted to an article about one “Khanyi” who apparently spends R10 000 a month to keep her skin tone light.
Before long, Twitter users had strong suspicion that Tracy Zille was actually black. Her controversial, race-related tweets sparked a huge debate among black social media users about “whether the black community is losing their African roots by worshiping European culture”. While many have been scratching their heads over Tracy Zille’s true identity, several listeners have called into radio stations to say that her identity “does not matter” as she “touches on valid points”.
Limpopo DA spokesperson Jacques Smalle said in a statement on Monday that the DA was demanding that councilor Anthony Matumba be suspended. “The deplorable tweets caused anger and fueled racial divisions. “It is not only unconstitutional, but also against the code of conduct for councilors,” he said.