Social media users vehemently defended influencer, Mihlali Ndamase’s social activism efforts after it came under scrutiny on Wednesday, 4 September 2019.
South African YouTube sensation, Mihlali Ndamase’s name trended on Twitter following a social media user questioning her efforts in light of trending hashtags such as #AmINext and #RIPUyineneMrwetyana. However, instead of the masses supporting the misinformed sentiments of the social media user, they banded together to defend Mihlali. Moreover, the activism efforts of the social media user who tried to discredit the arguably biggest name on South African Instagram also came under scrutiny.
The follower who questioned Mihlali’s activism tweeted, “Mihlali is not the only influencer but she’s definitely one of the biggest. Fees Must Fall, Me Too Movement, Am I Next, she’s always very quiet and always says it’s [for] personal reasons. Use your influence for change too.” Not long after, many supporters took to Twitter to share the many projects that Mihlali has endorsed with her brand.
One follower stated, “Mihlali Ndamase? The same one with a foundation for women and girls supplying not only food, clothes to the less fortunate but also sanitary items?… The one who’s been using the platform she’s most followed on these past days for pepper spray donations?”
The foundation is called the Siyasizana Foundation, which is currently campaigning under the We Will Not Be Silenced project aimed at collecting pepper sprays. Apart from collecting pepper sprays, the campaign is also collecting tasers or donations towards purchasing tasers, which will be given to young women in various tertiary institutions.
Another social media user, who is a supporter of the beauty and lifestyle influencer, wrote, “So [you] aren’t calling out male influencers to speak about or do something about gender-based violence [GBV]. [But] you are busy dragging Mihlali, a woman, who is actively trying to do something about GBV on Instagram. Always [blaming] women. Misogyny.”