A tumultuous time for the opposition: five must-read DA stories

22 October 2019 - 06:00 By Unathi Nkanjeni
The DA lost a substantial number of votes in the May 2019 elections, and now Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has resigned after Helen Zille was voted in as the party's federal council chairperson.
The DA lost a substantial number of votes in the May 2019 elections, and now Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has resigned after Helen Zille was voted in as the party's federal council chairperson.
Image: Gallo Images

The latest events in the DA have been far more tumultuous than anyone could have expected.

Here are five must-read stories:

Zille's surprise announcement

Earlier this month, former DA national leader Helen Zille surprised her followers on social media when she announced her plan to compete for the position of federal council chairperson.

“After careful consideration and consultation, I have submitted nomination forms to contest the position of chair of the DA's federal council.

“SA cannot succeed unless the DA succeeds. I am prepared to work hard and to play my part in saving our democracy,” she said.

Unity and stability

While campaigning hard for the federal chairperson position, Zille insisted she was the right candidate.

In an interview with eNCA, she said she could bring unity and stability to the party.

“I’m back because I was asked. I think I can bring unity and stability to the party. I think the party is suffering very much at the moment. It’s a party I have invested my whole life into.

“SA’s democracy depends on the DA succeeding. I really would like to put every effort I can into it again,” said Zille.

Newly appointed

On Sunday, Zille beat her rivals for the position of federal chair.

She takes over from James Selfe, who held the position for 19 years.

In her acceptance speech, the newly elected federal council chair said she would stay in her lane.

“I will stay in my lane. This a job that co-ordinates the different structures, functions, systems and processes. My job is to ensure  all those things run smoothly.”


PODCAST | The DA's darkest days: What happened & what now?

For more episodes, click here.

Subscribe: iono.fm | Spotify | Apple Podcast | Pocket Casts | Player.fm


Trollip lost to Zille

Former Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip's confidence was met with a disappointing outcome when Zille defeated him and MPs Mike Waters and Thomas Walters in an election on Sunday for the federal council chair position.

Before crunch time, Trollip told DispatchLIVE he had made himself available for the position because of his “great affection for this party”, and his belief that the DA “represents the only realistic alternative to the failing ANC”.

“The challenges the DA is facing are centred on factional interpretation of what we are trying to achieve, which is ‘one SA for all’ based on ‘freedom, fairness, opportunity, and diversity’," he said.

Mashaba resigns

Following Zille's council chairperson appointment, a position second only to that of party leader Mmusi Maimane, Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba announced his resignation, citing that the DA intended to break up the coalition that helped him land the job.

“The DA I signed up for is no longer the DA that emerged from the recent federal council meeting,” he said.

Herman Mashaba has resigned as the mayor of Johannesburg on October 21 2019. His resignation comes after former DA leader Helen Zille was elected as the party's new federal council chairperson.

X