DA ‘sex pest’ chief whip appeal bid next year

The Democratic Alliance has delayed hearing the appeal of Edmund van Vuuren, who was expelled by the party earlier this month.

Edmund Van Vuuren

The DA’s legislature chief whip will appeal his party’s decision to terminate his membership after he was found guilty of sexual harassment by the Federal Legal Commission (FLC).

Federal executive chairman James Selfe told the Daily Dispatch yesterday the party had to change the date to next year because Van Vuuren had changed his advocate.

Van Vuuren’s membership was terminated some months after an internal disciplinary process run by a panel of the FLC.

The complaints were lodged by a 25-year-old woman.

She alleged Van Vuuren had made inappropriate comments to her in a telephone call, including offering to stand in for her husband “if necessary”.

The panel recommended his removal from the position of chief whip and termination of his membership of the party, but that this should be suspended until 2019.

But DA Federal chairman James Selfe said the FedEx, which reviews all recommendations by the FLC, resolved that the penalty was “inappropriately lenient”, and should be substituted by termination of the membership with immediate effect.

Van Vuuren, who has refused to comment publicly about the case, has appealed the decision.

Selfe said that Van Vuuren would continue to hold his titles of shadow education MEC and chief whip in the legislature until the appeal process was complete.

“I am sure that the hearing will now happen in the new year,” said Selfe. — simthandilef@