De Lille row could hobble DA
THE Western Cape High Court ruling on Tuesday in the Patricia de Lille versus DA matter exacerbated a general feeling that the DA is doing itself no favours in this saga.
That the court ruled in favour of De Lille in terms of suspending her cessation of DA membership, thus allowing her to return as mayor of the City of Cape Town, albeit on an interim basis, has to sound rather ominous alarm bells.
This matter is destined to damage the DA as the party becomes almost impatient and condescending in its approach to De Lille.
What is of concern to me and those who once supported the DA, and those whose disillusionment with the party is on an irretrievable increase, is the fact the De Lille requested an open court for her disciplinary hearing.
The DA, which boasts of “openness”, “transparency” and “accountability”, missed a great opportunity to walk its talk and allow a hearing that was open to the public as requested by De Lille.
Evidently, both parties had “nothing to hide”, and it would not only have made for intrigue but it would have shown the public that the DA meant what it said and was not simply blowing hot political rhetoric to lure the unsuspecting.
After all, the DA does not go seeking for support in the dead of night but uses public platforms to entice support during the vote-harvesting season.
So it would follow that the public would have a vested interest in a high-profile matter such as this – and by not allowing it to be open to the public, “accountability” and “transparency” become words of futility that we all must be wary of.
The DA made applications to courts to have matters televised, claiming it was in the interest of the public.
So how different is this? Using the excuse of it being an “internal” matter does not hold water and I dare suggest that people must take notice of this for future reference.
One cannot preach one thing and practise quite the opposite and not expect people to notice.
The state of disquietude in the DA has become palpable and if the party believes it is going to depurate itself of the “De Lille virus” that hangs like the sword of Damocles over it as this doleful saga goes on, then I am afraid the party might have miscalculated the feisty former PAC member.
In the end it may well be, “it ain’t over till the PAC lady sings”, and the incubus that De Lille has become to the DA will surely haunt it in the foreseeable future. Narendh Ganesh Durban North
REINSTATED: The matter between Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille and the DA will haunt the party, says the writer.