JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa has been elected as the new president for the party after he won with 2440 votes to become African National Congress’s 14th president taking over from Jacob Zuma. He beat Zuma’s ex-wife Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma who had 2261 votes. He will be deputised by David Mabuza who beat Lindiwe Sisulu with 2538 votes.
Gwede Manthashe has been elected as the party chairman beating his rival, former police minister, Nathi Mthethwa. Ace Magashule has been voted in as the new Secretary General of the party having beaten Senzo Mchunu. Jessie Duarte will deputise him after beating Zingiswa Losi getting 2474 votes. Paul Mashatile becomes the party’s new Treasurer General.
Ramaphosa narrowly beat Dlamini-Zuma by 180 votes to land the top job in the ANC and will contest in the 2019 presidential elections. Among other things that Ramaphosa is known for, opposition will now try to bring him down for his involvement in the Marikana Massacre.
On 15 August 2012 he called for action against the Marikana miners’ strike, which he called “dastardly criminal” conduct. He also admitted and regretted later for his involvement in the act and it could have been avoided if contingency plans had been made prior to the labour strike.
Ramaphosa has long been considered a potential presidential candidate and ran in the 1997 ANC Presidential election, ultimately losing to Thabo Mbeki. Ramaphosa announced that he would seek the ANC Presidency in 2017, with his second run for President immediately placing him as a front-runner for the party leadership.
Ramaphosa launched his campaign slogan as #CR17 Siyavuma. In August 2017, Ramaphosa was involved in a scandal which alleged he had been in several extramarital affairs and was involved in paying money to individuals while maintaining the affairs. Ramaphosa later denied the allegations claiming they were politically motivated in order to derail his presidential campaign.
By August 2017, Ramaphosa had received the endorsement of the trade union COSATU, the National Union of Mineworkers as well as the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape and Gauteng provincial ANC leadership. Individuals who have also stepped forward to support Ramaphosa include education minister Angie Motshekga, Cosatu’s president Sdumo Dlamini, former finance minister Pravin Gordhan and former KwaZulu-Natal Premier Senzo Mchunu.
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