Helen Zille responds to claims minority coalition ‘forced’ the DA’s hand in Gauteng metros

The DA’s federal chairperson Helen Zille.
The DA’s federal chairperson Helen Zille.
Image: Esa Alexander

DA federal council chair Helen Zille has dismissed claims that a minority coalition “forced” the DA’s hand in Gauteng metros.

Zille celebrated the DA’s Vasco da Gama being elected as speaker of the City of Johannesburg and its candidate in Ekhurhuleni, Tania Campbell, being chosen as mayor, calling it “extraordinary results”.  It was the start of several victories for the party, which also won the mayorship in the City of Johannesburg.

However, one social media user suggested that the party’s win was not an achievement but rather a “pretty smart political play” from opposition parties forcing the DA to work with them.

“Let’s see. People can only force your hand if you allow it to be forced,” Zille responded.

According to Zille, the DA campaigned hard to beat the ANC and “fix broken municipalities”.

ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba said the decision to elect the DA’s Mpho Phalatse as  Johannesburg mayor was difficult but necessary. He said it was now up to the DA to show the “maturity” to “listen and consider other parties”.

“In Johannesburg, we knew that if it came down to a choice between ActionSA and the ANC, the DA would simply abstain, handing the keys to the metro to the ANC. This is not what residents want, and this is not what residents deserve,” he said.

“We made a commitment to all South Africans, that where we contest, we will unseat the ANC. We are sticking by that commitment.

“The DA, after spending the last three days throwing my name and the name of ActionSA into the dirt, will now have exactly what they didn’t want: the very minority coalition governments they have spoken against, without written agreements in place with any parties. Maybe now they will listen and consider other parties.

“Let them demonstrate the same level of maturity shown to them by the multiparty coalition group and restart negotiations again and negotiate coalitions in the interests of residents and not their own narrow political self-interest.”

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