De Lille takes aim at DA as party fight hots up

Patricia de Lille.

Embattled Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille has aimed another punch at the DA.

In a statement on Thursday‚ De Lille asked: “What is the DA hiding?”

This was after a lawsuit she brought against the party was postponed.

The DA has accused De Lille of corruption and maladministration. She submitted reasons to the federal executive on Wednesday stating why she should not be axed after the DA caucus in the city voted in favour of her ousting.

De Lille took the party to the High Court in Cape Town to have a report by a committee chaired by DA parliamentary chief whip John Steenhuisen reviewed and set aside.

“I have challenged the findings of the Steenhuisen Report which found me guilty on untested allegations and smeared my name‚” said De Lille. “Again I have been informed by my legal team that the matter has been postponed due to the DA’s refusal to provide the documentary and other evidence which informed the Steenhuisen Report in which findings were made against me.”

Among other things‚ De Lille said she is demanding a letter written by Cape Town councillor JP Smith “which started this entire witch hunt against me”. She said the letter was addressed to party leader Mmusi Maimane and James Selfe‚ the party’s federal chairman.

She said by “Smith’s admission”‚ the letter was given to other federal executive members including Steenhuisen‚ Denise Robinson‚ Refiloe Ntseke and Thomas Walters.

De Lille said she requested a copy of the letter from Maimane but “never received it”‚ while Selfe sent her one page of the 30-page letter. She said Steenhuisen told her that the letter was confidential.

She also wants the DA to name the person she is accused of sending an SMS to influence the scoring of Achmat Ebrahim‚ the former city manager‚ who had he reapplied for his job. She said the SMS was relied on to initiate disciplinary action against her. De Lille said she was forced to launch another court application against the party to get the documents “which the DA used to smear my name. Without the full record of evidence and a proper investigation‚ the Steenhuisen Report can only amount to a collection of feelings and baseless anecdotes”.

She said the cases will be consolidated and will be heard in June. Selfe is yet to comment.

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