Gosebo Mathope
3 minute read
4 Oct 2017
2:14 pm

DA violated separation of powers in the De Lille-Smith matter, says analyst

Gosebo Mathope

The ANC alleges De Lille billed R700k to the City of Cape Town, listed as a client, during the renovations to her private home.

Former mayor of Cape Town Patricia de Lille. Picture: Patricia de Lille on Facebook

Political analyst Lukhona Mnguni thinks the DA’s approach in the Patricia de Lille matter “seems suspicious”, as it relates to alleged irregularities at local government level, and not within the DA.

Instead of a council decision taken to investigate the allegations and tabling the report before council, the DA opted to delegate “a subcommittee of a political structure of the DA” to investigate and produce a report.

“The DA should, as a party, activate the City to appoint a credible and independent investigator to review the works done at De Lille’s house or write to the public protector to carry out the investigation,” Mnguni wrote on a Facebook post.

He said for the DA “to satisfactorily get to the bottom of this alleged irregularity and clear/implicate De Lille, they need to talk to City officials”, as the officials are not accountable to the DA as a political party, but are instead answerable to the council. The City of Cape Town has a multiparty executive committee that also includes the ANC.

Mnguni argued it seemed the DA was misreading its overwhelming majority in the City of Cape Town as licence to behave in a manner that contravened the need for the separation of the party and state. “Imagine if when the Nkandla allegations were made the ANC had said a subcommittee of the NEC would investigate the matter and get back to us. Would you have deemed such a move credible?”

READ MORE: It’s not factional battles, it’s ‘internal democracy’, says DA’s WC acting leader

Leader of the opposition, ANC, councillor Xolani Sotashe, speaking to The Citizen outside De Lille’s house this afternoon, concurred and questioned why the party had decided to reduce the alleged irregular expenditure to a political matter within the party.

“In fact, I am in front of her house. We have been working on this story for quite sometime. I am looking at 13 visible CCTV installations. Let us understand one thing, De Lille lied about using about her money. We have a report which shows R700 000 was billed to the City of Cape Town as a client in the invoices.

“She also lied about a security assessment which said her life is in danger, which was never presented to council. We want to see that report. She undermined council because any expenditure above R200 000, it must come to council,” Sotashe said.

Sotashe further claimed that during a council portfolio committee meeting on safety and security this morning, it was also confirmed they had never seen the reports.

He said that was clear proof that the DA was trying to fool people, as De Lille did not breach the party’s code of ethics, but instead violated the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) and supply-chain management policy.

“This is maladministration and corruption. We are going to motivate for the mayor to be hauled before council disciplinary committee, and the matter must also be referred to the public protector, as De Lille misled council,” Sotashe added.

Political columnist Gareth van Onselen told 702 earlier today that although the party was fast approaching a fiercely contested provincial elective conference this weekend, there were no factional battles in the party, but just difference of opinions between two strong personalities within the party.

Siyabonga Sesant, DA Western Cape communications manager, told The Citizen that Ando Ntsondo had today pulled out of the race for the provincial leadership. Lennit Max and Bonginkosi Madikizela are the only candidates contesting this position.

De Lille’s accuser, JP Smith, will not be able to take part during the conference as a delegate due to his suspension from party activities. Instead, he will be allowed to contest for one of the three deputy chairperson positions in absentia, as he will only be allowed to cast a special vote between 7am and 7.30am on Saturday.


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