Anonymous DA email 'false and destructive' - Maimane, James and Trollip

2015-05-01 22:21
(<a href=https://twitter.com/JacaNews>Jacaranda Newsteam</a> via Twitter)

(Jacaranda Newsteam via Twitter)

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Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance's top three leaders on Saturday described an anonymous email detailing alleged sexual misconduct between the party's senior male leaders and their female colleagues as "false and destructive".

"We condemn this email and its anonymous author in the strongest terms," DA parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane's campaign manager Geordin Hill-Lewis said in a statement.

"This is negative, false and destructive and it does nothing but harm the interests of the party that we are both running to lead and serve."

Hill-Lewis was speaking on behalf Maimane, the party's federal chairperson Wilmot James and Eastern Cape leader Athol Trollip.

Maimane and James are running for the party's leadership position, while Trollip is running for the federal chairmanship.

"Our respective campaign teams are aware that an anonymous email was sent to some federal congress delegates this morning.

"The email contains a series of slurs and libellous claims about various DA leaders and their private lives."

'Choose women in the party to be their playthings'

In the email, which was seen by News24, the author says the reason why there are few women running for leadership positions in the party is because "there are men in the DA who have made it a special past time to choose women in the party to be their playthings".

The author then claims to have been one as well. She says when she raised her concerns she was "brushed aside by a system that protects men that use their power to get away with the worst misogyny against women".

The email then continues to name five senior leaders in the party who are either known for hitting on female staffers, for having sexual relations with them in return for getting them positions and names one female staffer who was allegedly eventually fired after having an "open affair" with one of the men.

The email ends by describing how married men "use their power to manipulate the ascension of women in the party".

"There is no doubt that these were probably all consensual - certainly the ones witnessed by some of us certainly were."

The author then accuses the party of not taking any form of sexual harassment or impropriety seriously.

Hill-Lewis urged party delegates to reject the email as there was no evidence to back up any of the claims made in it.

"We reject it entirely, and suggest that congress delegates do the same," Hill-Lewis said.

Read more on:    da  |  mmusi maimane  |  wilmot james  |  athol trollip  |  politics

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