DA’s arrogance is nothing new

Ideas

DA’s arrogance is nothing new

Cape Town bureau chief

Meetings of the DA federal executive should be televised as demonstrations of how to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
Even without the benefit of witnessing what are presumably exercises in tortured logic if not outright idiocy, the outcomes of these meetings tell us everything we need to know about the party’s incipient decline.Almost simultaneously with Cyril Ramaphosa’s instantaneous transformation of perceptions of the ANC, the DA has displayed the kind of arrogance voters have become used to in the nine years of Jacob Zuma’s presidency.
Unless the slide can be arrested by an outbreak of common sense, history will trace its origins to Sunday January 14, when party leader Mmusi Maimane announced the federal executive’s decision that Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille would be investigated by the party’s legal commission.In the meantime, he said, the DA caucus in the City of Cape Town would be instructed to replace her as the leader of the council’s war on Day Zero.
The caucus complied, and five days later the party leader — soon to be christened “Councillor Maimane” by the scornful ANC — introduced himself at a made-for-TV press conference as Cape Town’s water saviour.
Capetonians have been uncharacteristically acquiescent about the arrival of an unelected Vaalie, with no experience of leading anything other than an opposition party, at the helm of probably the biggest crisis it has faced.
But it gets worse. On Wednesday, ignoring the fact that it had given its legal commission 60 days to investigate De Lille, the federal executive told the DA caucus to fire her as mayor by supporting an ANC no-confidence vote.A statement by provincial leader Bonginkosi Madikizela — the man tipped to take De Lille’s mayoral chain — made it clear that she has been tried, convicted and sentenced, setting the stage for a lengthy legal battle which will taint everyone involved.
De Lille observed that the DA was making a mockery of its own values, but she may have been wrong.
Perhaps it is simply displaying the values that have been there all along.

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