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DA elective conference: a slippery race to the top

DA Race

The DA leadership race between Mmusi Maimane and Wilmot James – to be decided at the party’s elective conference this weekend – has attracted its fair share of controversy.

First there were the sex scandal allegations; then the TV debate, where Maimane called for a referendum on the death penalty (despite the unconstitutionality of this move), a position he has since flip-flopped on; and then a spat started by Maimane’s campaign manager Geordin Hill-Lewis, who seemed to think James’ political affiliations during the struggle counted against him.

Add to this a last-minute court application that forced the SABC to broadcast the conference, and veteran journalist Allister Sparks’ ill-considered remarks this morning, when he called architect of apartheid Hendrick Verwoerd “smart”, and viewers are glued to their seats and bringing out the popcorn – despite the otherwise pedestrian nature of a race that Maimane looks set to win.

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