Embattled Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille remains hell-bent on clearing her name of allegations set against her by her own party, claiming that the Democratic Alliance's controversial "recall clause" raised at their federal congress meeting is a new bid to have her ousted.
The party and De Lille have been at loggerheads since an internal report made findings of corruption against her and disciplinary processes were initiated.
"When somebody says they've lost confidence in you, it must be for some reason and you must have the right to respond. Therein lies the clarity needed when it [the recall clause] is implemented. To determine whether your version or theirs is credible, there needs to be some kind of hearing," she told HuffPost on Monday.
It is no secret that there are individuals in the DA who have been trying to get rid of me at any cost for the last few months. They've shown that they would flout their own processes and ignore their own values of 'Freedom, Fairness & Opportunity' to remove me.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) April 8, 2018
Changing their own Federal Constitution through the newly passed "De Lille Clause" shows just how far they are willing to go to avoid their own due process.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) April 8, 2018
"As public representatives, you are elected by the public and they are entitled to know what the reasons are for a vote of no confidence. The clause is interesting. It remains to be seen as to how it will be implemented."
The clause reads that: "If the president, a premier, a mayor or any other public representative elected or appointed to any executive position in a DA government has lost the confidence of his or her caucus, the federal executive may, after giving him or her the opportunity to make representations to it, resolve to require him or her to resign from his or her office within 48 hours. Failure by that member to resign will lead to the cessation of his or her membership of the party".
News24 reported that the DA has no other mechanisms to recall a person in an executive post if a motion of no confidence fails, and that at least 12 speakers gave input into the heated topic – the vast majority of whom supported the DA's ability to make political decisions about its deployees.
I have been fighting for a fair and transparent process amidst the slew of allegations that have been thrown my way.The DA should be aware that, even if they refuse to follow due process in the spirit of fairness, the laws of our country protect public representatives.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) April 8, 2018
As someone who fought for those rights during the struggle against apartheid, I will not tire in ensuring that the hearing I have asked for is open to both the media & public. They deserve to hear my defence in the interest of clearing my name in the most transparent way. END— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) April 8, 2018
"It is an open secret that individuals inside the party are trying hard to get rid of me at all costs. All I'm asking for is a fair hearing or a fair trial. This clause is a way of short-circuiting disciplinary processes. I'm hell-bent on clearing my name. You can't buy your integrity. I am determined to answer to all these allegations," De Lille said.
The high court in Cape Town is due in May to rule on De Lille's application to set aside the report against her compiled by DA chief whip John Steenhuisen. The interparty disciplinary hearing against her has been postponed indefinitely.
The DA's federal executive chairperson, James Selfe, could not be reached for comment.