Mmusi Maimane & Athol Trollip leave the DA - eight telling quotes from their address

24 October 2019 - 12:28 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Mmusi Maimane announced his resignation as DA leader at a press conference on Wednesday.
Mmusi Maimane announced his resignation as DA leader at a press conference on Wednesday.
Image: Sunday Times/Alaister Russell

The DA's Mmusi Maimane and Athol Trollip shocked South Africans when they announced their resignations on Wednesday.

South Africans watched in shock as Mmusi Maimane and Athol Trollip announced their resignations as leader of the DA and federal chairperson respectively. Maimane and Trollip broke the news in a press conference held at the party's headquarters on Wednesday.

This is what they had to say in their resignations address:

Mmusi Maimane:

Striving for inclusivity

“During the party's 2018 congress, I sponsored what is now known as the diversity clause, which cemented diversity as one of the DA's core values. This is truly a very important step in leading the organisation towards more inclusivity, demonstrating that the DA will never be a party for one race.”


“We sought to build greater diversity, to expand the opportunities particularly for young, black candidates and activists within the party. In doing so, we were clear of this one fact, that the emancipation of black South Africans is not the enslavement of white South Africans.”

I fought with Zille

“I fought many battles with Helen Zille, especially about her comments, but it never deterred from the respect we shared. Even with the comments about colonialism, we certainly maintained the respect. I maintain that these sentiments did not help build trust between black and white South Africans and they made the project harder.”

I've been resisted 

“In the past few months, it's become more clear that there does exist a few within the DA who do not see eye to eye with me. They don't share the vision for the party and the direction it was taking. There has been a consistent attack on me and my leadership to ensure that I failed.”

Athol Trollip:

Mmusi inspires me

“When Mmusi was elected, I will never forget that at that congress, a young, very talented and inspirational man inspired me when he said the DA is not a home for racists. ”

Formation of DA

“When we formed the DA it was a traumatic time for our party but we took the decision to put the interests of SA first and to build a party for all South Africans. I had personal misgivings about it but, when the decision was made, I threw myself into that decision and we saw incredible results.”


“2016 was an incredible year for the DA. We met all the objectives that we set ourselves to govern the city of Cape Town with an increased majority, to govern Nelson Mandela Bay, Johannesburg and Tshwane. Historic election. But this year in May, we had a less than acceptable election, we went backwards.”

I quit

“There is a time to come and a time to go in politics and I realised this weekend that it was probably my time to go and I'm happy to accept that. I'm happy to move on, to try to rebuild my life.”

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