Former Midvaal Local Municipality mayor Bongani Baloyi has terminated his membership as a member of the Democratic Alliance (DA) after 14 years with the party.
Baloyi, who led the first municipality in Gauteng to be run by the DA and completed two terms in office, becomes the latest prominent black leader to leave the official opposition party after the departure of former DA MP Phumzile van Damme earlier this year.
Taking to Twitter on Monday morning, Baloyi made it clear that he was leaving the DA – effective from 20 December 2021 – out of his “own agency” and “not because I am being purged or any nonsense”.
He added that he was leaving the party on his “time and terms, with a clean track record in government and the party”.
While it was unclear what his next move in politics would be, Baloyi said he was going to “focus on exciting opportunities”. He said he was grateful to the DA for the support he received throughout the years and the opportunities afforded to him.
‘This hasn’t been an easy decision’
Contrary to his tweets, in his resignation letter to the DA that was circulating on social media, Baloyi said his decision to terminate his party membership was not “an easy decision”.
After completing two terms in office as the mayor of Midvaal, Baloyi was replaced by Peter Teixeira after the DA retained control of the municipality.
Baloyi was undoubtedly one of the rising stars in the DA after he became the country’s youngest mayor at the age of 26 in 2013. Midvaal is ranked the best performing municipality in South Africa and has achieved six unqualified audit outcomes under his leadership.