Court ruling gives De Lille more time

Former Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille and Advocate Dali Mpofu
Former Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille and Advocate Dali Mpofu
Image: Esa Alexander

Ousted Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille won a minor victory yesterday in her bid to retain her DA membership and her mayoral chain.

De Lille brought an urgent court application to have her membership restored and remain mayor pending an application to review and set aside the DA’s decision to terminate her membership on Tuesday.

The review application will be heard on May 25. Judges Patrick Gamble and Monde Samela interdicted the Independent Electoral Commission from filling her position as a city councillor pending the main application.

The court reserved judgment on her application to have her membership and mayoral position restored.

But the DA opposed the interim relief sought by De Lille. “We submit that the application must fail‚” DA counsel‚ Sean Rosenberg‚ SC‚ told the court. “[De Lille] is not asking for the preservation of the status quo‚ she seeks the reversal of the situation‚ that is a radical remedy.

Putting her in charge of a major metro is risky.” De Lille and the DA have been communicating through lawyers for some time. She already had two matters in the high court related to her disciplinary hearing.

She wants to compel the party to release the evidence it relied on to charge her‚ including a 30-page letter written by Cape Town councillor J P Smith complaining about her alleged misconduct‚ among other things.

At the party’s Cape Town offices‚ James Selfe‚ the chairman of the DA’s federal executive‚ said De Lille’s announcement during an interview with talk show host Eusebius McKaiser on Radio 702 on April 26‚ that she would resign from the DA after clearing her name cost her membership – and her mayoral chain.

Selfe said the DA had invoked a section of the DA’s constitution that states that: “A member ceases to be a member when he or she … publicly declares his or her intention to resign … from the party.” – TimesLIVE