Western Cape Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Bonginkosi Madikizela says that Lennit Max must resign from the party now that he is a special advisor to Police Minister Bheki Cele.
“He has effectively walked away from the DA,” Madikizela said on Tuesday.
Being appointed to a ministry was political, he said, and he did not see how this would work if Max was still a member of the DA.
“He must just make his new political home official and save the DA the trouble. He must do the honourable thing and resign as a member.”
In a press briefing on Monday, Max confirmed that he was still a “fully-fledged member” of the DA and that he did not see a conflict of interest.
“I am not a member of the ANC… yet,” he said.
He added that Cele was not interested in his political affiliation, but in the skills he could offer.
Max, who previously served as provincial police commissioner and community safety MEC, would assist with policing strategy and ideas, as part of a 12-month contract.
‘The same rabbit hole’ as De Lille
He said that the call for him to serve in government was in line with President Cyril Ramaphosa’s clarion call, when he said during his State of the Nation Address, Thuma mina (Send me).”
On Tuesday, ANC acting provincial chairperson Khaya Magaxa welcomed Max’s appointment and said they would leave it to him to decide on a political home.
“If advocate Max in his own political consciousness decides to join the ANC, we will celebrate.”
Former Western Cape premier Ebrahim Rasool, who is heading the ANC’s election campaign in the province, said it seemed as though the DA, in its approach to Max, was “going down the same rabbit hole as they have gone down with Patricia de Lille”.
“Their response is, you cannot be a member of the DA, because you use the words ‘Thuma mina’.”
Rasool said he respected that the DA had to deal with its internal business, but believed the party was in a hole and that it should stop digging.
“What the DA is doing is almost akin to the purging that [US President Donald] Trump is doing… I think, in a very real sense, the politicisation of expertise and skill is a lesson we have learnt nationally. We advise the DA not to go down that road, because it will only lead to bad things in South Africa.”
In response, Madikizela said Rasool’s comments were nothing more than political posturing. ― News24