Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane and Athol Trollip attend a DA rally held in Butterworth over the weekend.  PICTURE: DAILY DISPATCH
Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane and Athol Trollip. PICTURE: DAILY DISPATCH

DEMOCRATIC Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane has drawn a line in the sand for racists in his own party, introducing an antiracism pledge, which will see any member immediately expelled for discrimination or racial mobilisation.

The recent highly publicised incidents of racism in SA were linked to the DA, hampering its attempt to shake off the tag of a party that would bring back apartheid if it took power. Examples included senior member and MP Dianne Kohler Barnard, and estate agent Penny Sparrow, who was an ordinary member.

Mr Maimane, after a strong start when he declared "if you don’t see me as black, you don’t see me" when elected leader last year, has floundered in his response.

Yesterday, he declared unequivocally that the DA was not a party for racists.

"Let me go further... if you are thinking of voting for the DA and you are a racist, please don’t (vote for the DA)," he said, to loud applause.

"No DA member must turn a blind eye to racism no matter how subtle or coded it may be. Racists are not welcome in the DA. I won’t tolerate racism," he said.

The DA would introduce an antiracism pledge, which every member would have to take and be held to by the party.

Any member in breech of the pledge would have his or her party membership immediately revoked, Mr Maimane said.