NEWS
31/01/2018 19:48 SAST | Updated 31/01/2018 19:50 SAST

De Lille Hits Back At DA Over 'Attacks' From Within

"Every other day, there is another manoeuvre to... get rid of me before testing the allegations against me," says the Cape Town mayor.

RODGER BOSCH/AFP/Getty Images
Cape Town City Mayor Patricia de Lille (C) talks to media at a site where the city council has ordered drilling into the aquifer to tap water, in Mitchells Plain, about 25km from the city centre on January 11, 2018 in Cape Town.

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille has hit back at the Democratic Alliance (DA) following its decision to table a motion of no confidence in her leadership.

Western Cape DA leader Bonginkosi Madikizela on Wednesday announced the party's federal executive had instructed its caucus to table its own motion in the council.

It will be heard after 10 days.

It also gave the caucus permission to support a similar ANC-sponsored motion on Wednesday in the council, which was subsequently withdrawn.

De Lille hit back on Wednesday afternoon, calling Madikizela a "well-scripted spokesperson".

The party's federal executive had resolved earlier this month that they would not be supporting a motion of no confidence until investigations against her were concluded.

"I have received no notification from the FedEx of a change in their decision, from being opposed to a motion of no confidence to now supporting it.

It is unclear why the party has reneged on their previous position.

'Desperation'

De Lille said she was asked by FedEx chairperson James Selfe to refrain from speaking to the media on the issues.

"However, I have been subjected to constant attacks by party members in the media on a daily basis, with no avenue for recourse.

"As I have said before, there seems to be great haste to remove me as the executive mayor.

"The desperation to replace me reached new heights today, when the FedEx gave the DA caucus permission to vote with the ANC in the motion of no confidence that they brought to council, and subsequently withdrew."

She considered it to be a serious mockery of the values that the DA purports to stand for.

RODGER BOSCH/AFP/Getty Images
Cape Town City Mayor Patricia de Lille (C) talks to media at a site where the city council has ordered drilling into the aquifer to tap water, in Mitchells Plain, about 25km from the city centre on January 11, 2018 in Cape Town.

'Unfair treatment'

She also criticised Madikizela, touted as De Lille's replacement as mayor, for engaging in "campaigns to unseat me from a democratically elected position".

Despite these attacks on my name... I have continued to serve the people of Cape Town and prioritise their needs above politicking.

"Judging by his behaviour this morning, I cannot be sure that the same can be said about the provincial leader."

She defended the city's recent unqualified audit opinion with findings by the Auditor General's office, saying the city had received the opinion in previous years.

Her removal from caucus meetings had also been an unfair step to isolate her and prevent her from working with councillors.

"Even when the premier of the Western Cape [Helen Zille] was suspended from the DA, she was allowed to attend and convene cabinet caucus meetings.

'Another manoeuvre to get rid of me'

She could not allow her name to be tarnished any longer.

"All I have repeatedly asked for was to be treated fairly and now that I have been the charged the process must take its course.

"Yet it seems that every other day, there is another manoeuvre to undermine these processes and get rid of me before testing the allegations against me and giving me a fair chance to respond to those allegations."

De Lille approached the Western Cape High Court last week, where it said the so-called "Steenhuisen report", used as a basis for decisions against her, will be reviewed.

The court will make its decision known on February 2.

-- News24