South Africa’s African National Congress (ANC) has picked Cyril Ramaphosa, an anti-apartheid hero, and business mogul as its new leader, and possibly the next president if the party wins in the 2019 presidential elections.
Ramaphosa, also the current Deputy President of South Africa narrowly defeated Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, president Zuma’s preferred candidate. He now has to unite the ANC after the bitter campaigns that almost split the party to two. Additionally, he has to embark on a national campaign to win people over after failures witnessed in the previous governments.
First things first
Ramaphosa will need to address unmet expectations to boost confidence in the party. Though previous ANC governments have provided basic necessities to the citizenry, the country’s poverty and unemployment levels remain high to date.
In the recent past, many South Africans have protested education system in the country. The social media was filled with #feesmustfall messages calling on the current government to review the system and implement free education. The SA Students Congress (Sasco), the country’s biggest student organization, said the ANC had already adopted a resolution to the issue.
Already, the group is planning to embark on heavy demonstrations come January 2018’s academic year unless “there is free education.”
But perhaps the most difficult job that Ramaphosa has to do is handling corruption that is rampant in most government institutions.
All in all, Ramaphosa has much to do now as the party leader or as the president if he wins in 2019. Chances are he might win due to the party’s dominance in parliament, which chooses the nation’s leader.
Cyril Ramaphosa greets an ANC member during the party conference in Johannesburg on Monday
Image: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters