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AgangSA-DA deal not rushed - Zille

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Copy of IOL helen zille nov 15

Independent Newspapers

DA leader Helen Zille. File picture: Bheki Radebe

 

Johannesburg - An agreement between AgangSA leader Mamphela Ramphele and the DA for her to stand as the party's presidential candidate was not rushed, Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille said on Monday.

“It was a risk and in politics one has to be prepared to take calculated risks,” she said in Johannesburg.

“We worked very hard to get this together over a very long period of time. It didn't happen in a week, I can assure you. Since 2010 I have been talking to Dr Ramphele about this.

The DA announced on Sunday that Ramphele had reneged on her agreement with the party to be its presidential candidate. Zille accused Ramphele of playing a game of cat and mouse.

She said on Monday the DA would “cut its losses and move on”.

“The (DA)'s federal executive thought it was a risk worth taking,” Zille said.

“I am the leader (of the DA). I have to take responsibility,” she added.

On Tuesday, Zille announced that Ramphele would stand as the DA's presidential candidate in the upcoming general elections. However, confusion arose on Friday over Ramphele's joining the DA.

According to a joint statement issued by Ramphele and Zille on Friday, the Agang SA founder would be welcomed into the DA at a press conference in Johannesburg on Monday.

But then Ramphele uploaded a message onto Agang SA's website.

“You may have by now seen 'joint' statements issued by the Democratic Alliance in which it is claimed that I will be accepting DA membership on Monday,” Ramphele said.

“This is not true. Nor did I agree to any such statement.” - Sapa


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