DA leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: Nic Bothma/EPA
Cape Town - DA leader Mmusi Maimane’s decision to stand as premier candidate has been labelled desperate and a testament to the sad state of affairs within the party.

Opposition parties in the Western Cape and a political analyst reacted to Maimane’s decision to run as a premier candidate for next year’s polls.

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said Maimane’s decision would divide the party.

“It’s sad... there is no way else that one can describe what is happening. I mean this is the time that he is needed to give vision and guidance to his party for the polls next year. Many people have given him the benefit of the doubt, but that is surely gone now because he is giving the ANC a clear win in 2019,” he said.

Maimane is, according to his spokesperson Portia Adams, consulting with structures on a possible move to the provincial government.

He was expected to make a public announcement on the DA’s premier candidate for the Western Cape on Sunday, but the briefing was postponed.

Officially, the party said it wanted to make the candidates for premier and mayor of Cape Town known at the same briefing.

Mathekga said that even though the DA did not stand any chance of winning at the national level, he maintained that Maimane should lead the strategic attack.

“No premier started as the leader of the party except for Helen Zille. You can’t have a leader demoting himself to a premier, not that premiers are not important. It’s like the ANC president saying he wants to be a ward councillor. It does not work like that. There is no way the DA will lose the Western Cape, so why fight a battle that is already won? It simply makes no sense,” he said.

ANC provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs said Maimane was proving their long-held view that the DA was bereft of leadership.

ACDP leader Ferlon Christians said Maimane had failed on all levels and has proven that he cannot lead.

“He failed dismally with the issue of Patricia de Lille and Athol Trollip. He is not a strong leader and the DA has no depth and they are trying to hold on to the Western Cape.”

EFF provincial leader Bernard Joseph said the DA was already admitting to a defeat at next year’s polls.

An announcement by the DA is expected today.

@JasonFelix

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Cape Argus