DA tells de Lille her membership has ended

2018-05-06 06:43
Patricia de Lille (Brenton Geach, Gallo Images, file)

Patricia de Lille (Brenton Geach, Gallo Images, file)

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The spat between the DA and Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille took a turn for the worse this week when the party informed her that her membership had allegedly “ceased”.

City Press is in possession of correspondence, dated May 3, in which the DA’s Werner Horn informs De Lille that an allegation had been made against her that she had effectively given up her membership when she publicly pronounced her “intention to resign” from the party.

“It is alleged that your membership of the Democratic Alliance (“the Party”) has ceased in terms of section 3.5.1.2, which determines as follows:

“A member ceases to be a member of the Party where he or she publicly declares his or her intention to resign and/or publicly declares his or her resignation from the Party,” the letter reads.

The allegation that De Lille forfeited her membership stems from an interview conducted on a 702 talk radio show on April 26.

Talk show host Eusebius McKaiser asked the mayor: “If I hear you, you are saying, ideally I want to clear my name, Eusebius, that’s why I am going to court and if I win this battle, and when I win it because I know I’ve done nothing wrong, then the morning after I have won the court case then I will resign from the DA.”

To which De Lille responds: “I will walk away. You summed it up correctly.”

She then says: “Because really it is not about hanging on to. I’m serving there at the behest of the DA. The DA has gone through a process and Electoral College; they have put me into that position. I’m not representing my jacket I’m representing the DA and if the DA feels it wants to put someone else in that position they are also entitled to do that.”

The letter by Horn gave De Lille 24 hours to contest that she had given up her membership.

“Please take note that in the event of cessation of membership you are not only no longer a member of the Party, but you also simultaneously lose your status as a public representative of the Party as determined by section 3.5.2 of the Federal Constitution.”

De Lille’s submission would then be forwarded to the federal legal commission which would make a recommendation to the federal executive who would make a final call on the matter.

In her response dated May 4 De Lille hits back, arguing that clause 3.5.1.2 was being applied incorrectly regarding her interview.

“Clause 3.5.1.2 of the Party’s Federal Constitution provides that a member ceases to be a member of the Party when she inter alia publicly declares her intention to resign. This is an anti-floor crossing provision in the sense that those who make public that they intend to resign from the Party disqualify themselves from crossing the floor,” De Lille’s submission reads.

“Firstly, assessed in context, I am talking about resigning as Executive Mayor of Cape Town and not a member of the Party. Let us not fool ourselves. The dispute between me and the Party is about the position of Mayor in Cape Town and not about my membership of the Party. The Party would not have offered me a position in Parliament if it wanted to get rid of me as a member.”

De Lille then quotes a transcript of the interview.

“Secondly, the meaning of my statement is very clear: I will not resign until I have proven through the Party’s disciplinary processes and, if necessary, by court proceedings that I have done nothing wrong. Only once I have cleared my name can I resign. Clause 3.5.1.2 cannot possibly apply to such a conditional statement.”

De Lille wrote that should the federal executive determine she has in fact ceased to be a member, she would approach the Western Cape Division of the High Court on an urgent basis to seek interim relief.

Deputy chairperson of the federal council Natasha Mazzone told City Press yesterday that the federal executive would make a determination on the allegation in due time.

She also confirmed that the complaint that the mayor had ceased membership had come from Free State leader Patricia Kopane.

Mazzone said the process of determining whether De Lille had given up her membership was separate from the one under way to consider the City of Cape Town councillors’ bid to oust her from her position as mayor.

The DA’s federal executive was locked in a two-day sitting this weekend which was set to announce the decision on whether to remove De Lille from her position of mayor.

But Mazzone said the decision would be made and communicated only this week.

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Read more on:    da  |  patricia de ­lille  |  politics

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