Last week, the Embassy of the State of Palestine in South Africa revealed that the Democratic Alliance (DA) had not communicated to the Embassy about DA leader Mmusi Maimane’s visit to Israel. Since the news broke that Maimane had gone to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, the party has been widely criticised by the ANC, EFF and other pro-Palestinian organisations, such as BDS and the South African Muslims Network.
The Embassy of the State of Palestine said in a statement that they had not received any information from the Democratic Alliance about the leaders visit. Hassona Aldramly, an embassy representative said “The visit was organised by the state of Israel, by the Ocuppier of Palestine… the DA didn’t inform the embassy of the visit.” He added that the embassy received information only via the media with regards to Maimane’s visit and when the embassy communicated with the Foreign Ministry in Ramallah, they confirmed that no official Palestinian leader had met with the DA leader.
The DA has since said that they communicated with Palestinian authorities and that they communicated with Palestinian leaders directly. A day after the embassy revealed that Maimane had not spoken to any official leader, the party released communique that was sent to authorities in Palestine. According to DA chief of staff, Jordan Hill Lewis, “If the embassy feels offended that we didn’t contact them, they could easily have written to us to say that was a mistake and we’ll take it on the chin.”
However, Palestinian supporters in South Africa lambasted the visit for being biased and not for the lack of protocol. Embassy of the State of Palestine VOC’s Drivetime’s Shafiq Morton spoke to Jordan Hill Lewis to clarify why exactly Maimane felt the need to have an official meeting with Benjamin Natanyahu…