THE DA’s Mmusi Maimane announces his resignation from the party, along with the resignation of DA federal chairperson Athol Trollip. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)
THE DA’s Mmusi Maimane announces his resignation from the party, along with the resignation of DA federal chairperson Athol Trollip. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

‘DA won't recover from Maimane's resignation because they're too out of touch’

By Marvin Charles Time of article published Oct 28, 2019

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Cape Town - South Africa’s official opposition is in crisis, and the future of the DA looks bleak. Political analysts have warned that the country could be dominated by the ANC.

Political analyst Dr Ralph Mathekga said: “We should worry about us becoming a one-party state because we have a weak opposition party. The situation within the DA is visibility getting out of control. They need new leadership quickly.”

Mathekga said the resignation of the party’s leader, Mmusi Maimane, on Wednesday left the DA paralysed.

“He (Maimane) has bitten a massive chunk into the DA and made it weaker,” Mathekga said.

Tension started brewing within the party after former leader Helen Zille was elected as the party’s federal executive chairperson, the most powerful position in the party. The chess pieces then started falling, with Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba resigning on Monday and Maimane resigning on Wednesday, with former Nelson Mandela Bay mayor and party chairperson Athol Trollip.

Political analyst Sanusha Naidoo said the landscape within the DA had changed, and this had prompted the resignations.

“There was definitely a realisation from Maimane that the landscape has changed dramatically and he won’t have the freedom to move around as flexibly as he likes with Zille around. At the moment, there is no official opposition in Parliament, and this gives leeway for the EFF to become the official opposition party,” she said.

Naidoo said it looked like a case of déjà vu for Maimane: “Patricia de Lille suffered the same fate. There does seem to be some sort of grouping within the DA that is vicious and will do anything in its power to get rid of someone,” she said.

But Amanda Gouws, from the Political Science Department at Stellenbosch University, said the party would not recover from this: “This won’t end well for the DA. They will lose black votes. They won’t recover from this because they are too out of touch,” Gouws said.

@MarvinCharles17

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Cape Argus

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