Peter Marais

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Peter Marais (born 1948) is a South African politician who participated in the Tricameral Parliament and became the Mayor of Cape Town after the 2000 election and later Premier of the Western Cape province.

Marais was a senior member of the New National Party (NNP) and was appointed to the Western Cape cabinet by NNP Premier Gerald Morkel in the late 1990s. After the NNP's merger agreement with the Democratic Alliance (DA) in june 2000, Marais took up dual party membership. As the NNP was the stronger party in the province, he was the DA mayoral candidate for Cape Town, and became Mayor following the local government election in December 2000. He was forced from the position in 2001 by DA leader Tony Leon, who saw him as a political embarrassment.[1] The move contributed to the NNP pulling out of the DA.

As a member of the NNP, Marais became premier of the Western Cape from December 5, 2001, to June 3, 2002, when he resigned following allegations of sexual harassment. The state declined to prosecute him for these allegations.[2]

He later founded the New Labour Party (NLP), attracting only 0.67% of the Western Cape provincial votes in the national election in 2004.

In 2006, he was cleared of corruption charges stemming from party funding in 2002.[3]

In November 2008, Marais joined the newly formed Congress of the People party, which broke from the ruling African National Congress early in the year.[4]


  1. ^ "The build-up that led to the implosion of the DA". SABC. Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-05-10. 
  2. ^ "South Africa Year in Review: 2002". Encyclopædia Britannica. 
  3. ^ "Marais wipes away tears after verdict". 5 October 2006. 
  4. ^ Peter Marais joins Cope, 28 November 2008
Political offices
Preceded by
William Bantom
Mayor of Cape Town
Succeeded by
Gerald Morkel
Preceded by
Gerald Morkel
Premier of the Western Cape
5 December 2001 – 3 June 2002
Succeeded by
Marthinus van Schalkwyk