Mayor Patricia De Lille has clapped back at Democratic Alliance (DA) Cape Metro spokesperson Grant Twigg, who accused her of making the people of Cape Town pay for her legal costs against the DA – saying she will foot the bill if she loses.
De Lille has taken the DA to court, saying the party acted in bad faith when it used the clause to expel her in May. She also argued that the clause is in contravention of various sections of the Constitution.
On Thursday, Twigg slammed Mayor Patricia De Lille for her “desperate attempts to make the people of Cape Town pay for her personal legal fees”.
“We applaud the Speaker’s decision to decline her request because her legal battle is about her own private interests, not the interests of the residents of Cape Town,” Twigg said. “The City decision had nothing to do with the DA, and the DA learned of the decision only after the Speaker made it.”
This comes after Council Speaker Dirk Smit declined De Lille’s request to fund her legal battle.
“It is wrong, and unjustified for public servants to do wrong, and in the face of enormous evidence against them, to dip into public coffers to pay their legal fees,” Twigg added. “If Patricia de Lille really thought she had a legal case in the public interest, she could have approached the State attorney to handle her case.”
De Lille hit back, saying that Twigg was lying and speaking “absolute rubbish”.
“Grant Twigg must stop lying with his misinformation campaign or plain stupidity,” the Mayor told iOL. “The issue of my legal costs for City investigations was requested based on the legal systems that I am entitled to in terms of the Structures Act. I have said that if I am found guilty, then I will pay the legal costs.”
De Lille referenced a criminal matter with Pieter van Dalen, DA Deputy Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, where the speaker approved legal assistance in a case van Dalen opened fire on two children in 2008.
“The speaker also agreed that the City could cover the legal costs of Councillor Matthew Kempthorne in another matter,” she added.
De Lille is currently awaiting judgement in her case at the Western Cape High Court after challenging the DA’s decision to rescind her party membership.
She scored a victory last month when the Court reinstated her as mayor pending the outcome of her application.