Maimane likely to be announced as WC premier today
The party is set to announce if its leader will follow in its former leader's footsteps as Western Cape premier.
DA leader Mmusi Maimane is seen during a press briefing held accross the street from the Union Buildings regarding government score cards, 4 December 2017, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles
DA federal executive committee members will decide on whether their leader Mmusi Maimane will succeed Helen Zille as Western Cape premier on Tuesday.
The committee is set to rule on the successor after a surprising last-minute move by the DA when they added Maimane’s name to the candidate list.
This was followed by the DA postponing the announcement of its Western Cape premier candidate for the 2019 elections.
Experts have described the move of deploying Maimane as premier as indicative of the party’s fear of losing the Western Cape. The Citizen reported earlier that the DA wants to use Maimane’s leadership clout to stop a possible takeover of the Western Cape by the ANC in 2019.
Maimane’s spokesperson, Portia Adams, said this was “not a done deal”, but Maimane was being proposed as one the options under discussion.
“Yes, the leader is discussing this matter. He is having extensive discussions with various structures, including the selection panel and the federal executive. Nothing is confirmed yet,” Adams said.
She said the name of the Western Cape premiership candidate would be announced on Tuesday where a number of Western Cape-based candidates will be considered.
“There is no premier candidate as yet. There is a rigorous process to select that candidate,” Adams said.
According to political analyst Susan Booysen, the DA was calculating its fortunes after polls indicated the ANC might be able to hold on to Gauteng in 2019 due to weak opposition in the province.
“The DA in the Western Cape still has the best chance of still being in government. That the polls show the ANC was doing well in the Western Cape currently is a source of worry for the DA, so they feel they might need their national leader to lead their campaign there,” Booysen said.