DA’s top brass Tony Leon, Helen Zille to lead coalition talks to form new government



Published Jun 3, 2024


Former Democratic Alliance (DA) leaders Tony Leon and Helen Zille are part of the “talented and experienced” team that will lead talks to bring about a new coalition government in South Africa.

DA leader John Steenhuisen announced on Sunday that Zille and Leon will facilitate the engagement with other parties.

Premier of the Western Cape Alan Winde, federal chair Ivan Meyer, Ryan Coetzee, and top whip of Parliament Siviwe Gwarube are among the other members of the negotiation team.

Steenhuisen stated in a speech that many South Africans were scared and uneasy about the future of the country because of its political system.

He said the purpose of the initial talks was to gather information on the options that were available to the DA as they sought to rescue South Africa from “Doomsday.”

“I want to assure the people of South Africa that the DA will always act in the interests of the people throughout this unprecedented moment in our country's history.

“In all that we do, we will be guided by the DA's fundamental commitment to upholding the Constitution and the rule of law, promoting non-racialism, effecting clean, accountable government with zero tolerance for corruption, and building a social market economy that creates jobs.

“Our engagements with other parties will also be rooted in the seven apex priorities outlined in our manifesto,” he said.

The DA is the second leading party which obtained 21.76% of the votes in the 2024 national and provincial elections.

This makes the party more likely to be in coalition with the ruling party, the African National Congress (ANC).

The ANC got 40.18% support, forcing them to settle for a coalition government. Leading figures in the ANC, EFF, and MK Party are supposedly in talks to create a coalition.

ANC secretary general Fikile Mbalula clarified that coalition talks can go ahead as long as Cyril Ramaphosa remains the president.

However, Steenhuisen expressed uncertainty about the possibility of the ANC, MKP and EFF joining forces to govern.

“The bottom line is that, collectively, the ANC, EFF, and MK have the numbers to take power, while the Multi-Party Charter does not. This is not the outcome that we wanted.

“But it is the outcome we must now deal with. The DA will not bury our heads in the sand. We will face up to this challenge, for that is the task of leadership.

“Throughout the election campaign, the DA undertook to rescue South Africa from the Doomsday Coalition. We will now do our level best to do exactly that,” he said.

Meanwhile, talks are under way so that parties can negotiate a coalition agreement to form a government within the next 14 days.

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