'I smell a rat' - Lindiwe Mazibuko on DA's protracted De Lille saga

2018-08-01 12:19
Former DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko. (PHOTO: Danielle Karallis)

Former DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko. (PHOTO: Danielle Karallis)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Former DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko says she is still waiting to hear exactly what Cape Town Mayor Patricia De Lille has allegedly done, "in plain English".

Mazibuko addressed the Cape Town Press Club on Tuesday evening as the keynote speaker at the Barry Streek memorial lecture in Newlands.

She touched on a range of topics, specifically her desire to aid the transition of aspirant leaders in civil society to public office through a new academy she has launched, called Apolitical Academy.

ALSO READ: Lindiwe Mazibuko defends De Lille

During a round of questions, Mazibuko was asked about the current affairs of her former party, and how she would handle the ongoing De Lille saga.

"I would like to know what the Patricia de Lille issue is," she said to laughter and applause from the audience.

"If someone can explain it to me in simple English, perhaps I can offer a fulsome opinion.

An 'uppity' woman of colour

"All I have is the ability to adjudicate this issue in mind based on my relationships with the individuals concerned, and I smell I rat.

"I smell a rat. A woman who is accused of having a 'bad management style'... I've never heard of a man being accused in politics of having a bad management style. Politicians are leaders, not managers.

"So, she is 'uppity'? She's an 'uppity' woman of colour. Is that what the accusation is?"

Mazibuko said there have been allegations of corruption against De Lille that haven't been followed through, that there were allegations of mismanagement but without any real evidence, and that the public has been pointed to websites that haven't clarified the situation.

"I hate to position myself as some former leader/political analyst, because I think there's nothing lamer than sitting on the sidelines and chirping.

"But I would really like to know what she is actually accused of, and how it benefits a party that has aspirations of government to bleed itself in the public square in this fashion. I simply don't understand."

The DA and De Lille came to an agreement last week after a months-long dispute, to fasttrack disciplinary hearings into her conduct, and that will be open to the media.

'Serious concerns' about ANC deputy president

When asked about her former party's chances in the upcoming elections, Mazibuko was more positive and said it would be a mistake to write the DA off.

"Media polls tend to be unscientific and not representative, so the data isn't always reliable.

"I would humbly suggest that one of the challenges of the opposition parties is no longer having a common enemy. It may be adding to the infighting to manifest and the ANC is sort of trucking forward.

"The ANC also is no holy cow. It has a deputy president that I have serious concerns with."

ALSO READ: The DA wants Lindiwe Mazibuko back

"But I would also remind analysts that people have been predicting the end of the DA for 15 years now. Every election was going to be the DA's last or (the one that it would) be replaced as the official opposition.

"So I wouldn't get too worked up at the prospects that the official opposition, which has 27% of the vote, is in danger of being overthrown.

"It may go backwards, which has happened before, but I think cooler heads will prevail, and it's possible for political parties to rescue themselves from themselves at the eleventh hour."

Mazibuko said she had no plans to join a political party again now that she has returned to the country following a stint abroad studying at Harvard in the US.

She wants to lobby people and groups to support young leaders from all walks of life through her new academy, and it therefore made sense for her to remain impartial for the time being.

'My blood is not blue'

She also dismissed rumours that she was cosying up to the ANC.

"There's been a little speculation as to why I'm [swirling] around ANC meetings. It's not because I'm joining the ANC," she smiled.

"I'm looking for leaders who will support graduates of my programme that will support next-generation public leaders.

ALSO READ: Lindiwe Mazibuko joins ANC heavyweights for discussion

"One of the things you need in politics is somebody that will provide you leadership and support and root for you in a time when you may be a threat to the status quo.

"I'm looking at all political organisations, not just the ANC, so in that context it would be inappropriate to be a member of any political party including the DA."

She said it was very likely she would still support the DA in the 2019 elections, but also light-heartedly said South Africans should move away from choosing a political team "for life".

"My blood is not blue. It gets exposed to oxygen and then it turns red. Science, guys!"

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  lindiwe mazibuko  |  patricia de lille  |  cape town

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Collections Team Leader

Western Cape
Ultimate Search
R18 000.00 - R20 000.00 Per Month


Cape Town
Professional Career Services
R215 999.00 - R216 000.00 Per Year

Prepress / Repro Manager

Western Cape
CTP Cartons and Labels
R25 000.00 - R35 000.00 Per Month

Property [change area]

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.