It’s the battle of the former Democratic Alliance (DA) leaders, as Mmusi Maimane has taken exception to Tony Leon branding him “an experiment that went wrong,” in his new book titled “Future Tense.”
Leon has been considered one of the fiercest critics of Maimane’s leadership in the official opposition party, particularly in the wake of the DA’s poor results at the 2019 national elections. Maimane resigned from the DA and Parliament in October, just months after the country went to the polls.
Maimane has no doubt been vocal about how he was treated in the party, especially on Twitter, which is where he hit back at Leon for his remarks.
“Hey, ore experiement ke mang?,” he asked. (Hey, who are you calling an experiment)
“Wa itlhagisa, ebile wa tella. Entlek ungijwayela kabi” (You showed up and are even disrespectful. Actually, you’ve become too familiar with me)
“I am a human being. Not your science study”
Maimane was reacting to a News24 article, which features an exclusive sit down with the DA veteran.
“I left the DA for a reason. Time is revealing that reason,” he said.
“Anyway, for this weekend I am focused on celebrating Easter and spending time with my family. Then back to working on what I know will be a disruptive movement returning power to the people. The sheer audacity to erase my agency, my dignity and my humanity”
Former DA leader Mmusi Maimane
Mmusi Maimane’s election to the DA leadership in 2015 was actually aimed at drawing in more black voters to the opposition party – and away from the African National Congress (ANC), which has no doubt taken a beating at the polls these past few years, but still enjoys enough support to remain in government.
Further elaborating on why Tony Leon dubbed him “an experiment that went wrong,” Mmusi Maimane took a screengrab of the News24 article and suggested it was mainly because he had wanted the party to remember struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who died in April 2018.
“For context (Tony Leon) makes these offensive remarks because I wanted the party to celebrate the life of #WinnieMadikizelaMandela when she passed and to expand the party base beyond its traditional voters,” Maimane said.
“That was the right thing to do and I stand by those decisions”
Hey, ore experiement ke mang?
Wa itlhagisa, ebile wa tella. Entlek ungijwayela kabi.
— Mmusi Maimane (@MmusiMaimane) April 3, 2021