Ramphele: I remain open to the DA

The Agang SA leader says she will do whatever is best for the country and democracy.

FILE: Mamphela Ramphele speaks at Wits University, Johannesburg, 25 April 2013. Picture: SAPA.

JOHANNESBURG - Agang SA leader Mamphela Ramphele on Monday said she is not ruling out a future partnership with the Democratic Alliance (DA).

This despite a very public fallout less than a week after DA leader Helen Zille announced Ramphele would run as the party's presidential candidate.

But amid some confusion within Agang SA, the pair met on Sunday and eventually decided to call the deal off.

Zille has since described Ramphele as a backtracker who can't be trusted, while Ramphele has accused the DA of rushing her into a decision.

Watch Zille explain her point of view:

Speaking to Talk Radio 702's Xolani Gwala on Monday evening, Ramphele said she wouldn't rule out further talks.

She explained that when the offer was first made to her, she believed AgangSA and the DA would be able to find a way to improve on the country's democracy with a stronger opposition.

"I am sad that we didn't manage to execute on it," she says. "[But] we remain open because we made a public commitment when Agang was launched that we will be active in working with others to realign the political space."

Asked if there was therefore still a possibility that she or Agang would still end up with the DA, she said, "Well, I remain open. I could end up with the DA tomorrow or next year."

She says her main priority is what's in the best interest of South Africa and finding a way to merge parties in a way that all members can accept, "Because if people don't feel included, you have a problem."

Ramphele says this would have been possible if more time was given.

"I entered this process with integrity. The only impediment was my being pressed to make an immediate decision, which is illegal in terms of Agang processes. I'm entitled to make a decision for myself but I'm not entitled to bind Agang."