Sunday Independent story factually flawed - James Selfe

DA says executive director team is not 'all white', there's no 'race row' within party

Response to Sunday Independent article

The Democratic Alliance (DA) categorically rejects the allegations and insinuations regarding the DA staff restructuring process made in the Sunday Independent today (see report).

The DA is the most diverse party in South Africa in every respect. The DA has the most diverse support base, the most diverse set of public representatives and the most diverse staff component.

The Sunday Independent story contains a number of factual inaccuracies. These include the following:

  • The Executive Director team is not ‘all-white' as claimed in the article.
  • There is no ‘race row' in the DA as claimed in the headline.
  • There have been no allegations of nepotism in respect of the appointment of Khurshed Moakes as Executive Director of Support Services. Ms. Moakes was appointed on merit in a process that was entirely above-board and overseen by myself and not the CEO who recused himself from the process.
  • The DA launched its election manifesto in Kliptown, not Klipspruit.

It is important to note that:

  • 58% of staff at the DA's National Head Office and 53% of staff country-wide are previously disadvantaged South Africans
  • 64% of DA employees are women. Most Executive Directors and Provincial Directors are women.
  • Some of the DA's top black staff members and managers were elected as public representatives following this year's local election. Party rules prohibit them from being both staff members and public representatives.
  • The DA is currently going through a process of restructuring which includes a process of further staff diversification.
  • The DA's Young Leaders Programme is designed to contribute to achieving the DA's twin goals of excellence and diversity in both the appointment of staff and the election of public office-bearers.

The DA cherishes diversity because diversity adds strength, adds insight, adds value, to each decision we make and every initiative we take. The DA will continue to strive for diversity in its ranks as it prepares for Election 2014.

Statement issued by James Selfe MP, DA Chairperson of the DA Federal Council, August 21 2011

Click here to sign up to receive our free daily headline email newsletter