Ex-DA chief whip Gibson rallies behind Steenhuisen to lead DA

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Gibson has weighed in on the DA’s upcoming conference.

DA interim leader John Steenhuisen at the media briefing at Nkululeko House on 23 February 2020. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Former Democratic Alliance (DA) chief whip Douglas Gibson on Wednesday said it was time for the DA to have somebody “grown up” to lead its politics.

Gibson has weighed in on the DA’s upcoming conference.


He told Eyewitness News on Wednesday that while Mbali Ntuli was good, the party needed a leader who was experienced and had been able to go toe-to-toe with the president in Parliament.

Gibson said John Steenhuisen, who is also up for the federal leader position, was more suited to take the DA forward.

Gibson has acknowledged that Ntuli was a bright politician but said this was simply not enough.

He said she has never set one foot in Parliament and wouldn’t be able to thoroughly lead the party’s caucus let alone its millions of supporters.

“As bright as she is, as clever as she is, and as good as she is, I think she’s a little early.”

Gibson, speaking of Mmusi Maimane and Lindiwe Mazibuko, said the DA has tried to push what he described as political juniors to the helm and it never worked.

“The DA tried this on two occasions and has flopped. It is now time to have someone who knows what he is doing.”

Some in the DA have already predicted the outcomes of this weekend’s conference, saying it was a question of how great a margin Steenhuisen would lead with while others have cautioned against counting all the chickens before they hatch.

John Steenhuisen: Would you vote for him?

(Edited by Mihlali Ntsabo)

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