Electoral court best forum to hear DA-De Lille dispute, WCape high court rules


CAPE TOWN, April 26 – The high court in Cape Town on Friday ruled the Electoral Court was the more “appropriate forum” to settle a legal dispute between GOOD party leader Patricia De Lille and her former political home and now rivals, the Democratic Alliance (DA).

Justice Robert Martin adjourned an application to have the DA interdicted from instructing tele-canvassers to tell potential voters De Lille was fired as Cape Town mayor.

“Therefore it is my finding that the most appropriate forum to hear both legs of this dispute is not this court because even if this court were to entertain the first leg by way of an appeal…it might create a situation where there are two opposing rulings on this matter at the end of the day when the electoral court makes the ruling on the matter of the review that is pending before it and that is completely unacceptable within our jurisprudence and therefore this court will adjourn this matter without establishing a date and will furthermore make no order as to costs whatsoever.”

De Lille approached the court after the DA refused to apologise to her for spreading falsehoods, as per an order of the Electoral Commission of South Africa last week. The IEC ordered the DA to apologise to its former member, setting a deadline of three days for the party to do so publicly, for telling voters De Lille was fired, just weeks before South Africans go the polls to elect parties to lead the country.

De Lille resigned from her position last year following a protracted legal battle with the DA, later establishing GOOD.

The DA said it would not apologise as it believed the IEC overstepped and that only a court could order it to apologise. The DA has applied to the Electoral Court to review the IEC’s ruling.

– African News Agency (ANA)