At 2.03pm on August 24, hostilities erupted on Twitter between former MP Phumzile van Damme and her erstwhile employer, the DA. Those invested in the more prurient side of political commentary will probably be interested in the way the internal dynamics in the DA are revealed, and use the exchange to conjure up pro-or anti-DA narratives. But the really interesting revelation is about how all political parties might view their relationships with the dominant social media platforms, and how much they think those platforms can influence election outcomes.

Van Damme’s first tweet read as follows: "Right, I was going to do this. I see [DA leader John Steenhuisen] has lied to the media about why I resigned from the DA. I was going to leave this. The day I resigned, I was told by the chief whip [Natasha] Mazzone to lay off Facebook. I could not do that & compromise my values so I resigned."..

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