A motion to create the first formal body within the DA to address LGBTIQ issues has been approved in the city of Cape Town.
On 15 February, Councillor Rob Quintas, who is also the chairperson of DA Metro LGBTQI, introduced a motion in the Metro Council to create the LGBTQI Forum as an ancillary structure of the Cape Metro region.
While there are existing LGBTIQ networks in the DA, there is currently no formal LGBTIQ body within the party that can inform decisions and policies. Quintas aims to change that, starting in Cape Town.
“It is high time that the DA has an ancillary structure that is on an equal footing to the youth (DA Youth) and women (DAWN), and has a seat at the table,” Quintas told MambaOnline.
DA Youth and DAWN receive funding from the party and have delegates who attend higher bodies and play a part in the DA’s decision-making processes.
Quintas’ motion was unanimously supported, with the full Metro Council agreeing that it was time for the DA LGBTQI to become an ancillary body, with a voice, budget and mandate. The move was also supported by DAWN Federal Leader, Nomafrench Mbombo.
“This milestone achievement allows the DA to meaningfully show its commitment to a diverse society, where the rights of the individual are paramount and not a luxury, and where inclusion is lived and experienced,” said Quintas.
A constitution, in line with the DA’s, must still be drawn up to formalise the LGBTQI Forum. “The DA’s Federal Executive will also be required to approve this process, which is now underway and I’m confident that the ball is well in motion and am extremely proud to have gotten it rolling,” Quintas said.
While the proposed structure’s mandate will be limited to the Cape Town metro, Quintas hopes that it will be rolled out in other regions. “It has to start somewhere and I know that the DA in KZN and Gauteng are very keen on emulating this. The sooner it is formalised and becomes standard across the country the better,” he added.
In January, the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) launched a new subcommittee, named the LGBTIQ Desk, to champion the needs and rights of the LGBTIQ community. The desk, however, will not have any formal or decision making role in the ANC.