Court: Council Speaker must decide on secret ballot in de Lille motion
Mayor Patricia de Lille says following Wednesday afternoon’s judgment, her lawyers will now contact the Speaker’s Office.
CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape High Court has ruled that the Cape Town Council Speaker must decide whether a vote of no confidence in Mayor Patricia de Lille will take place in the form of a secret ballot or not.
De Lille lodged the urgent court application because she feared Democratic Alliance (DA) councillors would not be able to cast a free vote on Thursday.
During a DA Council caucus meeting late last month, 84 members voted in favour of Mayor de Lille to be sacked.
Fifty-nine were in support of her retaining her position.
She says following Wednesday afternoon’s judgment, her lawyers will now contact the Speaker’s Office.
“In the arguments yesterday, not one of the parties were opposed to the secret vote.”
De Lille has emphasised she was never against the motion taking place.
“The court has now ruled in my favour when it comes to fairness and so councilors will have their own conscience to decide whether they vote for the motion or against it.”
The DA’s legal representation argued the matter has to do with political power and de Lille's belief that if the vote is secret, she could retain her position.
I’m happy with the comprehensive judgement received. Judge ruled that I was correct in approaching the court because the DA only agreed to a free vote yday. Now Cllrs are free to decide. Speaker was ordered to use his discretion regarding a secret ballot.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) February 14, 2018
The DA came under fire by the Judge and his ruling has taken away the party’s right to instruct councillors how to vote. This puts the power firmly back in the hands of the councillors to vote according to their conscience without fear of reprisal.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) February 14, 2018
The Judge ruled that the Speaker of Council should exercise his discretion and decide whether the motion of no confidence vote should take place by secret ballot.— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) February 14, 2018