Mon. Jul 22nd, 2019

Fake news alert: EFF’s BMW ‘protest’ did not curb German investment

EFF's BMW GermanyThe EFF gets enough attention without the creation of fake news.

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Despite what many social media users may say, an EFF (Economic Freedom Fighters) protest which targeted car manufacturers in Rosslyn, Pretoria, has not harmed bilateral relations between South Africa and Germany.

Once again, the world of social media has been whipped into a frenzy by the ever-controversial actions of the EFF. Melodramatic accusations of irreparable damage done to investor relations, as a result of a fierce protest in Rosslyn, were forged in the foundries of fake news.

Let it be known that debunking fictional tirades which are passed off as facts, is, in no way, related to the condonement of the EFF’s strong-armed antics. Regardless of the absence of international criticism, storming the gates of valuable industries en masse to demand employment isgenerally regarded, both locally and abroad, as a touch short-sighted.

Watch: EFF members attack Rosslyn industries

Yet, as if often the case, the rambunctious Red Beret’s have regularly favoured action over rationalism; controversy over calm. It’s what keeps Julius Malema and his brigade of ravenous revolutionaries in the public eye; the attention garnered from chaotic conflicts with ‘white monopoly capital’.

Still, while South Africa’s patience for the hard-hatted politicians grows thin, and the media sets to intensify its spurious embargo, fake news which has the propensity to further inflame tensions proliferates Facebook profiles whith renewed vigour.

On Friday 16 November, hordes of EFF members descended on the industrial centre of Rosslyn. The red brigade tore through gates and took aim at car manufactures in the area, demanding that the sector employ locals permanently.

Fake news of BMW’s bilateral power steering

The Friday fracas for jobs intensified and moved from Nissan to BMW, disrupting workflow and causing discomfort for all of those who were, ironically, just trying to do their relatively mundane jobs in peace.

Whether the fervent job hunters eventually tired, or if they were pushed back by a combination of local security officials and law enforcement, is not known. However, in the wake of the EFF’s riotous action, Facebook, Whatsapp and Twitter quickly filled with an extended tale of international destruction:

“Say thank you EFF you wanted to attack BMW in Roslyn.

Last week brave EFF comrades attacked several industries in Roslyn.

What do you think the BMW plant manager did?

He phoned his German Ambassador for help. The Ambassador phoned Germany and Rhamaphosa.

The MD of BMW in Germany also phoned his government representatives for assistance.

Now Germany has refused any investment in South Africa

Viva EFF Viva

Destroy everything is the way to economic upliftment.

European governments don’t put up with tin pot dictators.”

As if the sarcastic tone and spelling mistakes weren’t enough to dispel any semblance of truth, many social media users spread the tale far and wide.

In reality, none of what was claimed in the above ‘chain-letter’ is true – well, maybe only the EFF attacking industries in Rosslyn. Everything else, the BMW manager phoning the German Ambassador for help – false. Germany and President Cyril Ramaphosa locked in discussions over tense bilateral relations – false.

German Ambassador confirms the fake news

To be fair, it could’ve been true – but the truth knows no half-measures. Earlier today, the German Ambassador, Martin Schaefer, took to Twitter in response to the claims, saying:

“To whoever spreads fake news about plots to end German investments:

No phone call, not with BMW CEO, not with Berlin, not with Cyril Ramaphosa.

All lies, sorry to say!

True is: Visit by German President to South Africa last week greatly invigorated good bilateral relations.”

There you have it – straight from the German Ambassador himself. If you’re thinking that the Twitter account is somehow fake, TheSouthAfrican.com confirmed with the embassy that it’s all fake news.

Remember South Africa, it’s ok to be outraged by tyranny and senseless violence – but it’s not ok to perpetuate a false narrative in order to widen the ideological divide. In the fight for fairness and justice, ignorance always sides with the enemy.

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