/ 7 May 2018

De Lille to lay complaint over fake social media post

Patricia de Lille will be laying criminal charges against party members who shared the fraudulent post
Patricia de Lille will be laying criminal charges against party members who shared the fraudulent post

Embattled Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille has said she is going to lay charges against party members who shared a fake Auditor General document on social media.

News24 reported on Monday that some members of the Democratic Alliance shared an altered Auditor General document on social media, which made adverse claims about De Lille over MyCiTi bus tenders.

The post has since been removed.

Auditor General of South Africa (AGSA) spokesperson Africa Boso confirmed to News24 that Auditor General Kimi Makwetu did not provide his signature for the document.

“The Auditor General South Africa did not sign or know the origins of the document you are enquiring about,” Boso told News24 via email.

“The AGSA will deal with all matters relating to municipal audits when it tables/releases its general report on the audit results of all the country’s municipalities on 23 May.”

Two DA MPs who had shared the post, deputy chief whip Mike Waters and National Council of Provinces MP Bronwynn Engelbrecht, both said they thought the document was authentic, and bemoaned the fact that it had in fact been altered.

De Lille has now weighed in on the matter and took to Twitter to say she will be laying a criminal complaint against those who shared it.

“In light of this information, I will be laying criminal charges against those who shared the fraudulent post,” she tweeted.

“I will also lodge a formal complaint against the named @Our_DA members with the FLC.”

Document ‘fake news’, ‘not used’ by DA in DC process

The DA’s Natasha Mazzone stressed to News24 on Monday that the purported document was not used in any way by the party in its disciplinary processes against De Lille.

“This document is not an official communication of the DA and has not been shared on any official DA platforms, nor has it formed part of the ongoing disciplinary matter between the DA and the City of Cape Town mayor, Patricia de Lille,” she told News24.

“Any DA leader or member who has shared this has simply fallen prey to fake news on social media platforms, which is quite common.”

In a follow up email, she stressed that the party was not responsible in any way for a fake document that was doing the rounds on social media.

She also said its existence was not worrying as it had no status legally.

“It is most certainly not worrying because this document has no status or standing and has not been used officially in any way by the party.”

She said the party was confident about the extracts of the AG’s findings which were published on their website.

“These findings are accurate as presented by the AG to the City of Cape Town as part of his audit opinion.”

The DA’s federal executive is considering its Cape Town caucus’ request to remove De Lille as mayor, after she lost the confidence of 70% of her councillors.

The party is likely to make a decision this week, pending legal advice around its new recall clause. — News 24