DA chief whip Steenhuisen lashes out at IRR's 'obsessive preoccupation' with the party

02 October 2019 - 13:05 By APHIWE DEKLERK
DA chief whip John Steenhuisen and party leader Mmusi Maimane.
DA chief whip John Steenhuisen and party leader Mmusi Maimane.
Image: Trevor Samson

DA chief whip John Steenhuisen has lashed out at the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) after it punted Western Cape premier Alan Winde as the next potential party leader.

IRR analyst Hermann Pretorius, in a column on Tuesday, called for DA leader Mmusi Maimane to resign and punted Winde as the next suitable leader. 

This comes as some sections of the DA leadership are gunning for Maimane after revelations about his rented home in Cape Town and use of a car donated by former Steinhoff boss Marcus Jooste.

Steenhuisen said the column was an attempt by the IRR to seek to raise funds in support of "a presumed leadership contest within the DA".

In the same column, and in social media posts, the IRR also asked people to be a "friend of the IRR" by sending an SMS which cost R1.

In a statement, a fuming Steenhuisen - who is known as a Maimane ally - said the IRR should form its own political party to contest the DA or join it - since it was obsessed with the affairs of the party.

"The DA has noted the obsessive preoccupation that the IRR seems to have with the DA's internal political and ideological conversations. This preoccupation has been increasing over the course of the past year or two," said Steenhuisen.

"Given that the IRR has such strong opinions about the DA's leadership and internal debates, they are more than welcome to become members of the DA and exercise their membership rights to participate in the DA's next congress, at which the party's leadership will be elected, instead of sniping from the sidelines and shamelessly piggy-backing their fundraising appeals on to it," he said.

Steenhuisen said the DA would not be distracted from doing its job in the governments which it ran in the Western Cape and Gauteng.

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