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De Lille wins fight to have her disciplinary hearing in public

Patricia De Lille
Image: David Harrison.

The DA has yielded to Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille and agreed that her disciplinary hearing can be open to the media.

Announcing the details of the deal which saw a planned vote of no-confidence in De Lille being scrapped at a City of Cape Town council meeting on Thursday‚ the DA said the “speedy” hearing would be held over three days in August.

“In addition‚ the agreement makes space for the mayor to be held accountable in a fair and reasonable manner for findings of independent council led-investigations‚ such as the upcoming Bowman’s report into her conduct‚” said a statement from DA spokesman Solly Malatsi and federal council deputy chairwoman Natasha Mazzone.

They were referring to an investigation by law firm Bowman Gilfillan‚ commissioned by the City of Cape Town‚ into allegations of misconduct against De Lille

Malatsi and Mazzone added: “Upon mayor De Lille’s insistence‚ the party will appoint a federal legal commission panel‚ and the prosecution will be led by an independent senior prosecutor and will be open to the media.

“This agreement states that we will all strive to conclude the matter as soon as possible.”

The row about holding De Lille’s disciplinary hearing in public has been going on since March‚ when the mayor said: “My lawyers have emphasised to the party that I can only restore my reputation if the public is able to view and assess for themselves whether the process is fair.

“The party‚ however‚ wants a closed hearing and‚ quite ironically‚ it is Ms Glynnis Breytenbach‚ who fought for her own disciplinary hearing to be open when she was at the National Prosecuting Authority‚ who is now leading the fight for a secret hearing.”

Breytenbach‚ who chairs the DA federal legal commission‚ told TimesLIVE at the time: “It is unfortunate that Ms De Lille refers to me in person because‚ of course‚ it was not me in person‚ it is the party's stance. I represent the party.”

De Lille also said at the time she had not been charged with corruption and the bulk of the charges against her “concern allegations of highly technical transgressions which do not involve me at all‚ other than the contention that as the ‘boss’ of the city I should be held liable”.

She is yet to comment on the deal with the DA that stopped Thursday’s no-confidence vote.

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