EFF leader Julius Malema and DA leader Mmusi Maimane

The Democratic Alliance (DA) is pursuing coalition talks with the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) after angrily denying a report that it was prepared to trade off its position as the biggest party in Tshwane and other cities for control of Joburg.

A DA spokesman conceded that the process was difficult as the African National Congress (ANC), which emerged as the biggest party in Joburg but lost control of Nelson Mandela Bay, was prepared to lay much on the table to woo the EFF.

The EFF is demanding that President Jacob Zuma step down.

The DA’s negotiator, James Selfe, acknowledged the vast ideological divides between the DA and the left-wing EFF, but believed that these did not preclude co-operation at local government level.

“Municipalities are about nuts and bolts and bread and butter issues, municipalities do not nationalise mines and banks,” he told ANA.

The DA was also due to meet with the United Democratic Movement yesterday.

Meanwhile, the ANC’s National Executive Committee was due to start a four-day meeting today, which was expected to focus on coalition forming.