Former Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Helen Zille has been elected the party's new federal council chairman, completing her return to the DA with a powerful top spot.
She beat out Athol Trollip, seen as the other main contender, along with Mike Waters and Thomas Walters.
Trollip tweeted a message of congratulation, saying democracy had won.
Congratulations to Hellen Zille on her election. Thanks to our federal council for dealing with a difficult weekend in a mature and committed way. We are a Democratic organization and Democracy won again. Thanks to all who supported me in the campaign, SA needs the DA.— Athol Trollip (@AtholT) October 20, 2019
Zille replaces James Selfe, who'd been in the position for almost two decades.
155 Delegates voted on Sunday morning at the weekend meeting of the council, which was also scheduled to discuss the 2019 post-election report which reportedly recommends that Mmusi Maimane step down as DA leader.
Speaking to EWN after the announcement of the election result, she had this to say about what's perceived as her deteriorating relationship with Maimane:
I'm not going to be the leader, I'm going to be the background co-ordinator pulling all the strings together... so there's absolutely no reason that Mmusi and I can't work together well and professionally as we always have done.— Helen Zille, Newly elected DA federal council chairperson
Analysts say Zille's election is likely to spark an early elective conference for a party that's at a crossroads.
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : 'I'm not going to be the leader' - Zille after winning DA FedCo chair contest