DA in the bog after high court awards damages for toilet interview

15 October 2019 - 15:42 By Malibongwe Dayimani
DA member Ntombenhle Rulumeni and party leader Mmusi Maimane. Rulumeni was 'deeply hurt and felt unfairly treated by the agents of her own organisation,' said a high court judge.
DA member Ntombenhle Rulumeni and party leader Mmusi Maimane. Rulumeni was 'deeply hurt and felt unfairly treated by the agents of her own organisation,' said a high court judge.
Image: Supplied

The East London high court on Tuesday ordered the DA to pay damages to a former member who sued the party for R10m over an interview in a toilet in 2016.

The party will also pay her legal costs after losing the defamation case, which has dragged on for three years.

Ntombenhle Rulumeni took the party to court in 2016 after she was interviewed for a council position inside the toilets of the East London Golf Course on February 6 2016.

Delivering judgment, judge Nozuko Mjali said: “There is no doubt in my mind that the plaintiff was deeply hurt and felt unfairly treated by the agents of her own organisation even before the interview that was held inside the female ablution area at the Bunkers Hill Golf Course.”

The controversial interview took place inside the women's toilets, where DA MP Kevin Mileham was on the interview panel, with MP Terri Stander and another female party member.

Judge Mjali agreed that Rulumeni suffered injury to her personality, but dismissed her claim for loss of income for losing the post she was interviewed for.

A date for the parties to argue damages will be announced. 

DA provincial leader Nqaba Banga told DispatchLIVE: “The party is going to study the judgment and we might consider a decision to appeal, but the federal committee will have to meet to decide.”


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