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Zille aims to 'unite the middle, protect individual freedom' in new IRR role

The former Western Cape premier said the IRR provided a platform for all concerned South Africans to contribute to the battle of ideas.

FILE: Former premier of the Western Cape Helen Zille. Picture: EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The South African Institute of Race Relations (IRR) said at the weekend that joining forces with former Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille brought together two of the loudest reformist voices in the country.

Zille said the IRR provided a platform for all concerned South Africans to contribute to the battle of ideas.

The former Western Cape premier said this would be achieved by “uniting the middle, protecting property rights, and promoting individual freedoms.”

“I’m going to be doing a lot of writing, research, thinking, and hopefully I will also write another book. And I’m going to do it on the political philosophy that binds open-ended-minded democrats, which is a fundamentally liberal political philosophy that’s in trouble all over the world in many ways,” she said.

The IRR’s Nicholas Lorimer said Zille would also fulfil the role of a senior policy fellow, where she would write on and coming up with solutions to the country’s problems.

“The battle of ideas is the contest of ideology and ideas that shapes the way we look at politics in the country. So, by fighting the battle of ideas, we want to move the conversation away from ideas that have failed to transform this country towards ideas that work,” he said.

Zille was expected to be a senior policy fellow and analyst at the institution.

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