FUTURE UNCLEAR: Patricia de Lille.
Embattled Patricia de Lille wants former deputy minister of justice Sheila Camerer recused from her disciplinary hearing given her apartheid history.

De Lille has already managed to remove one panel member - Pogiso Monchusi - who decided to recuse himself after a request was made by her lawyers last week.

De Lille’s lawyers have argued that Camerer was a deputy minister of justice during apartheid, but the party claims otherwise.

“During apartheid, De Lille was of course a prominent figure in the liberation movement. This background is of some importance because, on a proper analysis, and on the facts set out, Camerer and De Lille have been lifelong political opponents who ended up in the same political party. The former is now asked to judge the latter. The lay litigant will apprehend bias on reasonable grounds in these circumstances,” De Lille's lawyers said.

Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said it seemed De Lille did not understand that the DA did not want her.

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“She moved over to the DA because of political expediency and now she has seen that the DA is a party that she does not fit into. The only people who are supporting her these days are the opposition parties. One can also start to question on whose mandate is she governing, because the DA certainly does not want her anymore,” he said.

“What she needs to realise is that fairness and all these other processes are not going to work in her case, because all they want is to get her out.”

Mathekga also said the De Lille issue is hurting the DA, as they appear to look helpless.

“When we look at the drama with Helen Zille and now Patricia de Lille, the DA appears to be in disarray. The drama can only be blamed on their unfortunate comfort levels in the Western Cape and the City of Cape Town. We are seeing a growing number of unhappy ratepayers and Zille’s tweets are not good for them the arrogance is coming out. And, truth be told, this is the same thing that happened to the ANC. I don’t see any difference between the DA’s situation,” he said.

Xolani Sotashe, ANC Cape Town leader, said De Lille had the full backing of the ANC.

“We can differ on many issues and ideologies; but, in principle, we cannot stand by and watch a white cabal in the DA terrorise black and coloured people. That is just wrong. They have used De Lille and many other coloured leaders and now they are being dumped like used condoms. De Lille has our backing and we will continue to expose the DA for what they really are.”

James Selfe, chairperson of the DA federal executive, said Camerer was a qualified practising attorney with years of experience. A further argument pertaining to Camerer’s recusal is due to be presented by the party, while it still remains unclear when De Lille’s hearing will continue.

Cape Argus