After much speculation about the future of Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane following the elections, the DA has confirmed that he will continue in the position until 2021.
“We would like to state that Mr Maimane remains our leader until the federal congress scheduled for 2021. And at that congress the party will decide whether he continues as the leader or not,” DA federal chairperson Athol Trollip said at a press conference in Johannesburg on Monday afternoon.
Trollip was speaking after the DA’s federal executive meeting which discussed the party’s performance in the national and provincial elections.
“Any talk of a change of leadership before the congress must be dispelled and we dispelled it as the federal executive,” Trollip added.
Maimane’s continued leadership of the party was said to be under threat after the DA garnered 20.76% of electoral support nationally.
The official opposition party will have 84 seats, five fewer than after the 2014 elections, which has largely been attributed by analysists to the growth of smaller parties like the Freedom Front Plus, which received 2.38% of the national vote, up from 0.9% in 2014.
Despite the loss of electoral support in this election, Trollip said the party’s leadership took collective responsibility for the results.
“As members of the federal executive, which controls and directs the activities of the party and implements the decisions of the federal council, we all take responsibility for the outcomes of these elections, whether good or bad. That burden does not sit on the shoulders of any individual,” he said.
Trollip said Maimane had led the DA’s election campaign from the front.
“Every single person in the federal executive, bar none, commended him for this leadership,” he said.