EDINBURGH — Cyril Ramaphosa needs more than the mantle of ANC leader to transform South Africa. Standing in the way of his efforts to save South Africa are likely to be the many corrupt and captured within the ANC’s main decision-making body. Although Ramaphosa beat Jacob Zuma’s ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, to the top post, many of President Zuma’s associates made it to the National Executive Committee. These include finance minister Malusi Gigaba and ANC Youth League leader Collen Maine, who have a wealth of evidence stacked up against them in the public domain that they have worked in the Gupta interests. Gigaba has hobnobbed with the Gupta family in Saxonwold and rallied to their defence in public. Maine availed himself of advice from Gupta-tainted public relations firm Bell Pottinger and has been active in promoting the white monopoly capital myth that has exacerbated racial tension. On the ANC NEC list are others tainted by graft, including Tony Yengeni, who was sentenced to prison in 2003 for defrauding parliament. Ramaphosa has promised to clean up corruption, which makes him a liability for anyone who has dipped their fingers in the proverbial cookie jar. – Jackie Cameron
By Mike Cohen and Paul Vecchiatto
Cyril Ramaphosa, the newly elected leader of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress, will have a tenuous hold on power in the party after his allies fell short of securing outright control over its top leadership structure.
A lack of support from a clear majority of the ANC’s National Executive Committee’s 86 voting members will limit his scope to drive policy changes and assert his authority over President Jacob Zuma, who’s second term as the nation’s leader ends in 2019. The NEC is the ANC’s highest decision-making structure in between its five-yearly national conferences.
— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) December 21, 2017
Half of the Ramaphosa’s camp’s 80 preferred candidates who appeared on a list circulated at the ANC’s national conference in Johannesburg and obtained by Bloomberg won election to the NEC. Forty-seven of those favored by the faction led by Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who lost to Ramaphosa in the party presidential race, were chosen. Seven of those picked were on both lists and their allegiances are unclear.
The composition of the executive committee will constrain Ramaphosa’s ability to set the government’s agenda to promote economic growth, create jobs and crack down on corruption. He beat Dlamini-Zuma for the presidency by the smallest margin since the ANC came to power in 1994, and only two of the other top-five party officials elected with him who also sit on the executive committee are considered solid allies.
Ramaphosa’s backers who made the cut included former finance minister Pravin Gordhan, parliamentary Speaker Baleka Mbete and Senzo Mchunu, the former premier of the eastern KwaZulu-Natal province who failed in his bid to become the party’s secretary-general.
Former ANC Treasurer-General Zweli Mkhize won the most votes of the 80 additional members of the NEC, followed by Lindiwe Zulu, the minister of small business development. Their names appeared on both camp’s lists.