'Agang focused on growing'

Agang leader Mamphela Ramphele said her party was focused on building political machinery.

Agang leader Mamphela Ramphele said her party will focus on all the background work needed to get ready for the running of a party. Picture: Lesego Ngobeni/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The leader of the 'Agang' political platform Mamphela Ramphele, said her team's focus was now on building political machinery in the build-up to the launch of a fully-fledged party.

She also spoke of creating social media platforms and putting a schedule in place to aid the party.

Ramphele told Eyewitness News the party should be unveiled by the middle of 2013.

The Agang leader also said there were thousands of volunteers willing to mobilise communities in their favour.

She said what was important now was the assembling of the machinery that would allow them to grow support for the new party and help set its agenda.

The Black Consciousness activist said people needed hope and that those in power must stop showing off their wealth.

She also spoke about how sometimes politicians also have a second luxurious car at their Pretoria residences and has called it wasteful.

Ramphele also critiqued the police's handling of the Oscar Pistorius murder case as well as the scandal around investigating officer Hilton Botha.

"How does the police operate that a man like that can then be designated to then deal with gender-based violence?"

She also said the mobile telephone industry would play a key role in gathering support for Agang.

The academic and activist entered politics last week, saying the initiative would put citizens at its centre and would not meet the same fate as those that came before it.

RAMPHELE ON JUSTICE

The Agang leader has asked whether top advocate Jeremy Gauntlett's legal ability was standing in the way of him becoming a constitutional court justice.

Last week the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) refused to include his name on a list of possible candidates for a constitutional court vacancy , which is sent to President Jacob Zuma.

This is Gauntlett's fifth attempt to become a justice, while Ramphele was amongst those who backed him in his latest attempt.

She said his brilliance could also be his hurdle.

"It is again an indicator of the kind of society we are; that merit doesn't count in this country anymore."

Ramphele also said the country's settling for mediocrity was something the country had become somewhat proud of.

The academic launched her new political platform on the 18th of February at a media briefing at Constitution Hill.