Patricia De Lille has resigned as Mayor of Cape Town, following month after month of internal strife inside the DA in Cape Town, as she faced charges which questioned her integrity.
This was announced soon afternoon, Sunday, at a briefing in CT, featuring De Lille and DA Leader Mmusi Maimane.
De Lille will stay on as Mayor until the end of October, and the bitter legal battles between her and the DA in Cape Town will be halted.
With an election looming next year, there had been a risk that the rift would have caused further reputational harm and would have lost the Party support and votes.
Said Maimane: “Today is a very significant and an historic day.
“The DA and Mayor Patricia De Lille have come to a mutual agreement.
“This has sapped the energy of too many people.
“I want to ensure that our commitment remains to building an alternative to the ANC.
“Mayor Patricia De Lille has agreed to resign as Mayor of CT from the 31st of October 2018. The DA has decided to withdraw all internal charges against Mayor De Lille.
“This is the best way forward for the people of CT. This gives us an opportunity to close a chapter.
“Her agreement to resign of Mayor of CT does not mean she is moving away from the DA. She has achieved great things.”
Said De Lille: “I have always maintained I am innocent and the allegations against me have never been proven.
“Now the charges have been dropped and withdrawn, I can now get on with my life – to build a better City, a better country, an alternative to the ANC. And to make sure we can save our country.
“Our country faces massive challenges. Leaders must put their differences aside.
“This fight between myself and the DA cannot continue forever. Now I have cleared my name, I have decided to step aside and to look into the future.”
She expressed: “deep and sincere gratitude” to the people of CT.
Maimane said “the Mayor will still be bound by the Constitution of the DA. That doesn’t change.”
He added that the decision will not affect non-DA court processes against De Lille.
He said that there is a now a process to elect a new Mayor in CT.
“In the DA we do not reward people with public office; we find the best people for public office”
He said he wanted to see a clean transition to the new Mayor.
“We draw a line on this particular chapter,” he said.
De Lille said that she will be dealing with issues such as land invasions and housing during her last three months in office.
“The City continues to run,” she said.
She gave no immediate indication about her own political future.
She later told ENCA: “We have announced a political solution to this saga which has been going on for many months.
“From the 31st October, I now can think what I want to do with my life.
“I now have the space to think what I want to do after the 31st of October.”
She later tweeted: “I want to assure South Africans that I did not make a deal with the DA. I took the personal decision to resign because I could no longer take the consistent abuse. It was very difficult decision and I trust that everyone will understand.”
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