I will not succumb to making my attendance at an EFF event a side issue – de Lille


Zodidi Mhlana

JOHANNESBURG- Embattled Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille has explained that she attended EEF’s memorial service in the Free State on Wednesday to pay her respect to the late struggle icon.

De Lille attended the memorial service which took place in Brandfort where Madikizela-Mandela was banished to for nine years by the apartheid regime.

But the DA has slated her for not notifying it of her decision to attend.

Responding to the criticism, De Lille wrote on Twitter: “I will not succumb to making my attendance at an EFF event a side issue. I went to honour Mama Winnie. I have great respect for Mama Winnie, she was a close friend and I regarded her as a sister. She was a former special colleague of mine.”

De Lille who is accused by her party of interfering in staff selection processes, and condoning and covering up maladministration also visited the Brandfort this week.

“I visited Mama Winnie’s old home in Brandfort. This place holds so many sad memories. It’s a great pity that it wasn’t turned into a museum while she was alive so that she could give a first-hand account of what happened here at the hands of the apartheid government,” she said.

However, the Democratic Alliance spokesperson Refiloe Nt’sekhe on Wednesday said that

While the party would not be taking disciplinary actions against her, she should have explained that she would be attending.

“She is a senior member of the organisation. It would have been nice if she had notified the party, it was embarrassing to hear that she was attending from the media. Perhaps, she should not communicate until her disciplinary hearing has been concluded,” she said.

The party said that it was represented at the event by its provincial Free State leader.

“As the DA, we received an official invitation from the EFF leadership and the party sent the DA’s Free State provincial leader, Patricia Kopane, to commemorate Mama Winnie’s life and to pass on our condolences,” Nt’sekhe said.