Leader of South Africa’s main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA), Mmusi Maimane, has announced his resignation from the party.
His move was widely speculated by local media outlets that said it was in connection with a race row within the party, which has the second highest number of seats in the National Assembly.
Maimane, was the first black leader of the DA. He is the second high profile party member to resign over the row that saw controversial former party leader Helen Zille elected to the second most powerful post in the DA over the weekend.
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Before Maimane, the DA’s mayor for the city of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba, had also resigned over Zille’s election.
Maimane and Zille clashed in 2017 after she praised aspects of colonialism. The DA is a largely white dominant party that has over the years wooed black voters.
Maimane’s election as leader became a break from the past with analysts averring that it had contributed to the DA’s strong showing in the last local elections held in 2016.