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Donor funding behind failed merger: Zille

2014-02-08 11:03
Johannesburg - The motivation behind Agang SA leader Mamphela Ramphele's short-lived agreement to stand as the DA's presidential candidate was to secure donor funding, according to DA leader Helen Zille, the Saturday Star reported.

"Dr Mamphela Ramphele wanted an immediate announcement because she was desperate for money," Zille was quoted as saying, while campaigning in Paarl on Friday.

"And the minute we made the announcement she contacted donors and tried to get money."

Ramphele's spokesperson Mark Peach described Zille's claim as "an outright lie".

"Agang has a fund-raising department that is in contact with donors daily and has been for the last year. So any notion that she was suddenly putting special calls through to donors is a flat, outright lie."

He denied that a reported donor meeting in London put pressure on Ramphele to work with the Democratic Alliance.

'I'm white, live with it'

Zille said an association with Ramphele would have benefited the DA largely because of Ramphele's struggle credentials and to put to rest the myth that the DA wanted the return of apartheid.

Zille said her race compromised the value of her own struggle record in the eyes of some voters.

"I'm white, live with it," she reportedly said.

The partnership between the DA and Ramphele lasted less than a week.

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

However, following the joint statement being issued, a message from Ramphele was uploaded onto Agang SA's website saying that she never agreed to join the DA.

On Sunday, Zille said Ramphele had reneged on the agreement to be the DA's presidential candidate and the following day the parties held separate press conferences to explain what went wrong.

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Read more on: da  |  agang  |  helen zille  |  mamphela ramphele  |  johannesburg  |  elections 2014

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