De Lille’s head again on the chopping block as DA plans internal no-confidence vote

16 April 2018 - 20:15 By Aron Hyman
Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille. File photo.
Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille. File photo.
Image: SUNDAY TIMES

Patricia De Lille said on Monday that a fresh attempt by her party to have her removed as Cape Town mayor proves that an amendment to the DA's constitution was aimed specifically at her.

This comes after the DA earlier in the day decided to go ahead with another vote of no confidence in De Lille. It also comes after the party amended its constitution at its Federal Congress last weekend to include a “Recall Clause” that allows it to remove members elected or appointed executive posts – whether they had done anything wrong or not.

Many commentators said the rule was specifically made because De Lille had refused to vacate the mayorship despite her party’s insistence she do so.

“The latest move by the DA caucus proves that the Recall Clause is a De Lille Clause‚ and that the DA constitution was especially amended to have me removed‚" De Lille told TimesLIVE on Monday.

On Monday‚ 66% of the party's caucus in the City of Cape Town agreed to use the new clause to ask the DA Federal Executive to grant a permission for a motion of no confidence to be held by the caucus.

An embattled De Lille has already narrowly survived a motion of no confidence in the city's council in February‚ but unlike that motion‚ this new one would only rely on the vote of the DA caucus. In this casus‚ De Lille's allies are dwindling.

De Lille was not present during Monday's caucus discussions and she told TimesLIVE that she had tendered an apology.

DA caucus deputy leader JP Smith said the caucus' relationship has continued to deteriorate since the last motion of no confidence against her.

"Nothing has improved and she has taken no steps to seek to improve it‚ so the relationship has deteriorated. It's manifest in the fact that she's not on the selection panel for the city manage‚" he said.

"You have a scenario where the caucus is unwilling to see the mayor on the selection panel for the city manager. If she was on it‚ the caucus would not have approved the outcome of the process because it no longer trusts her to run these processes without fiddling. It no longer trusts her to make an appointment without manipulating the outcome‚" said Smith.

He was referring to various allegations of nepotism against De Lille‚ all of which she has denied.

"There are new matters that have come to the fore such as an arbitration award of R80 000 that was awarded against the city because an applicant for a position of area director won an award against the city because the mayor had interfered in the appointment process and had amended the criteria of appointment‚" he said.

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