Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille File photo: African News Agency/ANA
Cape Town - It's D-day for embattled mayor Patricia de Lille and the DA as a full bench of the Western Cape High Court is expected to deliver judgment in her case against the party.

“Whichever side loses will probably try to fund-raise for an appeal, depending on whether or not their lawyers think their case is winnable on appeal,” according to political analyst Keith Gottschalk.

“Either way, a majority of the DA municipal caucus no longer want Patricia de Lille as their leader - so all the rest are merely legal technicalities as to exactly how and when her mayorship is terminated, and exactly when her DA membership is ending.”

Gottschalk said “litigation might well drag on into 2019, maybe even beyond the general election”.

“The City will be run by its bureaucracy, with the DA municipal caucus leading it, until the De Lille litigation ends,”he said.

De Lille challenged the constitutionality of the party’s “cessation clause”, which it used to terminate her membership following a radio interview where the party claimed she said she would resign after clearing her name.

De Lille returned to her post as a mayor after the same court granted her interim relief in May.

De Lille’s legal representative argued in court on June4 and 5 that she told Radio 702 and Cape Talk host Eusebius McKaiser she would resign from her job as mayor, and not as a party member.

Her lawyer, advocate Dali Mpofu SC, argued that the party’s reference to the cessation clause was unconstitutional, unfair and in bad faith.

Also acting for De Lille, advocate Johan de Waal SC argued that the party did not follow its constitution’s procedures when appointing the federal legal commission panel which expelled her.

There was mixed reaction on social media yesterday.

The ANC said: “The ANC in the Western Cape has watched the frantic and maniacal attempt of the DA to rid itself of its mayor with incredulity. Our concern has been with the impact of this morass, playing out itself in our courts, on the dignity of the office of the mayor.”