DA mulling early stage coalition proposals

2016-08-08 17:42
DA leader Mmusi Maimane and the party's mayoral candidate for Nelson Mandela Bay Athol Trollip. (Derrick Spies, News24 correspondent)

Cape Town – The Democratic Alliance has met with most of the opposition parties represented in councils they are interested in forming coalitions with, its federal executive chairman James Selfe said on Monday.

The various parties had discussed what was important to them.

While the talks were at a “very early stage”, Selfe said certain proposals were made.

“I have been asked to respond in writing, which will probably go out later today. The idea is there will then be follow-ups,” he said during a lunch break of a fedex meeting.

One of the issues at hand was dealing with ideological issues of co-governments.

DA mayoral candidate Athol Trollip said on Saturday that talks were taking place at national level to form coalitions in Nelson Mandela Bay, Tshwane and, potentially, in Johannesburg.

He would not disclose any details, other than to repeat United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa’s and UDM regional chairperson Mongameli Bobani’s statements that they would form a coalition with the DA.

If the UDM joined the DA in Nelson Mandela Bay, the DA would need only another two seats for a majority.

Nelson Mandela Bay was one of the most contested metros in the 2016 local government elections. The DA wrested control from the African National Congress by securing 46.7% of the vote and 57 seats in the 120-seat council.

With election results officially declared on Saturday, cities now had 14 days to set up an executive council.

Selfe was asked whether he thought this was enough time to finalise coalitions.

“Oh yes,” he said emphatically. “If you can’t find each other in 14 days, then it’s probably a sign that you will never find each other.”

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