The CEO of the Democratic Alliance (DA) Paul Boughey resigned on Thursday, ahead of the party's crucial federal council at the weekend. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency

Rustenburg - The CEO of the Democratic Alliance (DA)  Paul Boughey resigned on Thursday, ahead of the party's crucial federal council at the weekend.

In his resignation letter, Boughey said it was the right time to hand over the baton and to allow the leadership and new chair of the federal council the space to chart their own course.

"The DA is going through an important phase of self-reflection, this is a necessary process in order to strengthen itself," Boughey said. 

"I am always struck how much criticism the party and its leadership come under, when all too often so much of this critique is made blissfully unaware of how complex and important the DA and its cause is to South Africa.

"I have no doubt, that the leadership and broader membership of the DA will rise to this moment, that it will re-calibrate and come back even stronger to face the challenges of election 2021 and beyond," he said in a statement.

"In a country and increasingly global landscape characterised by the rise of competing nationalisms, the DA’s vision and values have never been more important to South Africa’s future. 

"I can only now wish the leadership well in their endeavors.It is therefore the right time to hand over the baton, and to allow the leadership and new chair of the federal council the space to chart their own course," Boughey said.

He also said that in stepping down as CEO, he had reached an agreement in principle with the party to do so, the details of which would be agreed to in the coming days. 

National Spokesperson Solly Malatsi said the party had accepted  Boughey's resignation.

"Paul has led the DA’s administration as CEO for close to five years, serving with distinction and an unflinching dedication to the party and South Africa.

"We wish him all the best in his future endeavours and thank him for his service to the DA and commitment to the broader democratic project," Malatsi said.

The DA holds its federal council on Saturday and it is expected that a new federal chairperson will be elected on Sunday, to replace outgoing chairperson, James Selfe, who will head up the party’s governance unit tasked with supporting DA governments to ensure they deliver better to citizens.

African News Agency/ANA