Helen Zille has dismissed as groundless criticism that the ousting of the DA in the City of Johannesburg was a culmination of the party’s decline that started when she returned to take over as federal chair.
In a brief response given to Independent Media on Thursday, Zille said while she was not commenting to the media about the matter (loss of Johannesburg to ANC), the assertions are wrong. She stressed that she has done more to diversify the party more than any other person.
“I am not commenting to the media because it is not my role except to say one thing: no one has done more to diversify the DA than I have. It is totally wrong to suggest that anyone voted for me because they want to reverse that process. We are all deeply committed to diversity and inclusion, no one more than I am,” Zille said.
When Zille dumped the Institute of Race Relations (IRR) in October, her critics said the move was to ensure that the party does not slide into being a mass based party as it was becoming under Mmusi Maimane, but remains a true liberal party placing interests of some minorities in the forefront.
In the Johannesburg vote on Wednesday one DA councillor and other smaller parties like the IFP, voted for ANC’s Geoff Makhubo to take over mayor.