DA: De Lille 'fake news' post unfortunate

2018-05-07 18:28
Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille. (Gallo images/Getty images)

Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille. (Gallo images/Getty images)

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The Democratic Alliance says it is unfortunate that party members shared a "fake news" post about Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille but stressed that it was not used in its disciplinary processes against the embattled mayor.

News24 reported on Monday that some members of the Democratic Alliance shared an altered Auditor General document on social media, which made adverse claims about De Lille over MyCiTi bus tenders.

AGSA spokesperson Africa Boso confirmed to News24 that Auditor General Kimi Makwetu did not give his signature for the purported document.

"The Auditor General South Africa did not sign or know the origins of the document you are enquiring about," Boso told News24 via email.

"The AGSA will deal with all matters relating to municipal audits when it tables/releases its general report on the audit results of all the country's municipalities on 23 May."

DA spokesperson Natasha Mazzone stressed that the purported document was in no way used by the party in its disciplinary processes against De Lille.

"The DA would like to clarify that the 'De Lille Exposed' post which has been shared on social media is not official content and has never been shared by our official DA platforms," Mazzone said in a statement on Monday.

"More importantly, this fake letter has never been used as the basis for any disciplinary matter between Patricia de Lille and the party.

"It is unfortunate that a fake news post which makes use of the Auditor General's signature has been shared as authentic content by many who have fallen prey to fake news on social media platforms."

READ: De Lille to lay complaint over fake social media post

In a follow up email to News24, Mazzone said that the party was not responsible in any way for a fake document that was doing the rounds on social media.

She also said the existence of the fake post was not worrying because it had no status legally.

"It is most certainly not worrying because this document has no status or standing and has not been used officially in any way by the party."

The party was confident in its official findings against De Lille. Mazzone said the party wanted to stress that point so that there was no ambiguity.

Mazzone also maintained that the Auditor General's findings against De Lille, tabled to the City of Cape Town council in January, were accurate.

"The damning findings against Ms De Lille, which were presented by the AG to the City of Cape Town as part of his audit opinion, are contained on our official website and are accurate.

"The DA is confident that this now clarifies that all content shared on our official party platforms is accurate and authentic."

Two DA MPs who had shared the post, deputy chief whip Mike Waters and National Council of Provinces MP Bronwynn Engelbrecht, both said they thought the document was authentic and bemoaned the fact that it had in fact been altered.

Meanwhile, De Lille said she would lay a criminal complaint against the party members who have shared the document.

"In light of this information, I will be laying criminal charges against those who shared the fraudulent post," she tweeted.

"I will also lodge a formal complaint against the named @Our_DA members with the FLC."

The DA's federal executive is considering its Cape Town caucus' request to remove De Lille as mayor, after she lost the confidence of 70% of her councillors.

The party is likely to make a decision this week, pending legal advice about its new recall clause.

Read more on:    da  |  patricia de lille

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