Phumzile Van Damme on racial division in DA: 'There is no race war'
Phumzile Van Damme has defended the Democratic Alliance against those who believe there are racial divisions within the official opposition, insisting it is “lazy thinking.”
Van Damme set the record straight on Twitter, after @BlackCulture_HM asked her if the black caucus exists and why it was not coming to embattled party leader Mmusi Maimane's rescue.
There is no black caucus. Contrary to popular belief, black people aren’t a homogeneous group, we are have agency and are capable of individual thought. There is no “race war,” as some lazy thinking would have it.— Phumzile Van Damme (@zilevandamme) October 6, 2019
Ta very much. https://t.co/4RUnw6ekoQ
The party that promises 'One South Africa for All' has been accused of all talk and no action. The DA has found itself in multiple sticky situations, garnering criticism from all sides. Herman Mashaba, Mmusi Maimane and Solly Msimanga are some of the DA leaders who have found themselves in hot water. From illegal tender claims to an alleged Steinhoff-sponsored SUV. Many have questioned the DA's leadership and DA-led municipalities as they shift from one controversy to another.
Van Damme's response comes after Maimane last Friday told the community of Port Alfred, Eastern Cape, that those who say the DA should belong to one racial group must distance themselves from the party.
“If you get black people who say the DA is only for blacks, then they shouldn't be in the DA.”
“If you get white people who say the DA should only be for whites, then you shouldn't be in the DA. We want a party for all South Africans.”
The question was not exclusively posed to Van Damme, but also to city of Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba and former Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga, among others.
Mashaba said they would make sure the country does not fall into the hands of those who “miss the apartheid days.”
Listen to the latest episode of Sunday Times Politics Weekly
Will the DA’s identity crisis dethrone Maimane?