Patricia de Lille has pulled off another victory. This time the Western Cape High Court has ruled that the Democratic Alliance’s cessation of her membership has been suspended. This allows her to return to her mayoral office at the Civic Centre – at least until another court sitting, starting on May the 25th.
Judge Patrick Gamble said: “In our view, preservation of the status quo before the DA federal executive determination to cease membership is the only available remedy.”
This ruling puts paid to the expected announcement by the Acting Mayor Ian Neilson of an interim mayoral committee.
It appears to mean that the mayoral committee that was in place before the DA announced the rescinding of her membership on May the 8th – is back in office.
Gamble said that De Lille must abide by party discipline in the interim period.
Asked for comment on what would happen now Neilson – who has been acting as Mayor since May the 8th – said: “The Judges reinstated the ougoing Mayco.”
This means that the ten-person mayoral committee – with the additional two of De Lille as mayor and Neilson as deputy mayor – is back in place.
The mayor’s office on the sixth floor of the civic centre has already been cleared of her personal items. It will need to be restocked in preparation of her return for a least a ten day period.
The next court round is expected to take some days and as it starts on a Friday, she will be back in office for at least another two weeks.
De Lille has scored a series of victories since the campaign began in the DA to oust her as mayor. She defeated a vote of no confidence in full council on 15 February – by one vote. She also prevented the announcement of an interim mayoral committee last week – when she challenged the rescinding of her DA membership.