Helen Zille bows out as DA leader

WEB_PHOTO_HELEN_ZILLE_RESIGN_120415

DA leader Helen Zille announces she will not be available for re-election in the party's upcoming annual congress in May. She made the announcement on Sunday, 12 April 2015 in Johannesburg.

JOHANNESBURG - In a press conference at OR Tambo airport on Sunday, DA leader, Helen Zille announced that she would not stand for re-election as DA leader next month. 

Zille made the announcement following a federal executive meeting.

Zille said, "The statement that I am going to make today is very simply a statement that I will be not available for re-election on May 9th."

"This has been a decision taken last week after consideration over years and such decisions are a long time coming but in the end they are suddenly because the time is right and one feels that it is right. And believe me I know that the time is right.“

She did say she would complete her second term as Western Cape Premier which comes to an end mid-2019.

The outgoing leader says the country is in a race against time to save the constitution.
 
Zille, who has been party leader since May 2007, said she took the decision last Thursday, mainly because she believed the party would benefit from a fresh leadership team.
 
”The overriding reason has been what I believe are the interests of the DA."
 
“It is essential for a political party in opposition to grow in every election. While I believe we would have carried on growing beyond our current four-million support base in next year’s 2016 election under my continued leadership, I am convinced our prospects will be even better under a fresh team.”
 
She&39;s expressed confidence in her party and is pleased with the state of the organisation.
 
Zille said she had been overwhelmed with advice about the decision.
 
“I was bombarded with different advice. I have been a leader of the DA for eight years now. Sometimes it feels like 80 years, sometimes it feels like eight months.”
 
The DA’s federal congress - where new leaders will be elected - takes place in Port Elizabeth next month. Nominations for leadership close on 20 April.
 
Missed Helen Zille&39;s announcement? Watch it in the gallery above.
 

 

 

 

 

Announcement by DA Leader