Zille: I know who mystery donor is

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IOL pic feb3 helen zille mamphela ramphele hug at presser Reuters AgangSA leader Mamphela Ramphele hugs Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille. Its back to the drawing board for the DA after Ramphele pulled out of the alliance. File picture: Mike Hutchings

Johannesburg - Confusion reigned on Tuesday about an alleged international mystery donor being behind the DA and AgangSA merger talks.

Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille told John Robbie on Talk Radio 702 that she would never be part of such a deal, but then said she knew who the donor was.

“Well I was certainly not going to consider accepting any money for merging, that's absolutely the bottom line,” Zille said on the show.

“You know I would never do that, I don't go in for those kind of deals...”

When asked who the mystery donor was, Zille said he should ask AgangSA leader Mamphela Ramphele.

When pressed further on whether she knew who the donor was, Zille said: “Yes I do... I don't think it's my job to tell anyone.”

Zille was responding to a report in The New Age newspaper that a mystery international donor was key to talks between Zille and Ramphele.

The newspaper quoted Ramphele as saying: “A donor pushed the DA and AgangSA together.”

In a tweet on Tuesday, Zille said: “It was not only one donor that put pressure on Mamphela. It was every donor. They want a united, strong opposition.”

On her Twitter account, Zille said the mystery donor was for Agang SA. In another tweet she said: “The only pressure prospective donors applied to Agang was to refuse to fund her because they want a united opposition. So do voters.”

Attempts by Sapa to reach Zille for clarity were unsuccessful.

Earlier, DA spokesman Mmusi Maimane denied the newspaper report, saying it was far-fetched.

“There can be no donor that can force us to make such a decision. There never has been and there never will be.”

AgangSA chief operating officer Andrew Gasnolar also denied the report.

“No, there isn't such a donor. There was no transaction. There was no international donor brokering this alleged transaction.”

He added that there were, however, many South Africans encouraging Agang SA to work with other parties to strengthen the opposition against the ruling party.

Last Tuesday the DA announced that Ramphele would be its presidential candidate for upcoming elections. However, confusion arose on Friday when Ramphele said she had not agreed to become a member of the DA.

On Sunday evening the DA said Ramphele had backtracked on their agreement. - Sapa



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