During a congress that took place on Monday in Johannesburg, the African National Congress (ANC), which is South Africa’s historic ruling party, reaffirmed its faith in Cyril Ramaphosa to lead the movement and, consequently, the country. Despite a recent incident, Ramaphosa continues to enjoy widespread support from the general population. He received 2,476 votes from delegates of the African National Congress (ANC). His sole opponent, former health minister Zweli Mkhize, who was entangled in a corruption scandal last year, earned 1,897 votes from ANC delegates, while he received 2,476 votes from those delegates.
The president’s landslide victory in the election makes it possible for him to serve a second term if the ANC wins the general election in 2024. The ANC is having more and more trouble because of high unemployment and the energy crisis. There was a great deal of unpredictability over the several hours that came before the vote, which went well into the night on Sunday. Mr. Mkhize threatened to come in second place, which would have been a significant setback for the president, who had been in a comfortable lead just a few days ago.
According to a source close to Zweli Mkhize, arrangements had been made a long time ago in order to secure votes in critical provinces. The plans were made “well before the conference,” but they weren’t made public until the last minute “to challenge the party’s culture of intimidation.”
Cyril Ramaphosa was the front-runner from the beginning of the election for the position of president of South Africa. He had a big lead in the last month’s nomination of candidates, and he had the support of the ANC, which kept him from being kicked out of office in parliament the week before.
The president himself has been embarrassed for months by a corruption controversy. He is suspected of keeping bundles of dirty money at home and opting to cover it up when thieves stole the money during a burglary in 2020. At the start of the party’s congress on Friday night, dozens of delegates rudely interrupted Ramaphosa’s speech by singing and banging on tables while making a windmill with their hands to call for change. In response, his supporters put their index and middle fingers in the air and demanded a second term for the person Nelson Mandela called “the most talented of his generation.”
The qualifications of the incoming vice president were also something that was anticipated. Paul Mashatile, a resident of Johannesburg’s most impoverished township, was elected by the ANC to the position of secretary general. Mashatile had previously served as the party’s treasurer. This position has traditionally served as a stepping stone for candidates running for president.
The constitution stipulates that Ramaphosa’s deputy president will take over as president in the event that he is implicated in the Phala Phala scandal, which is named after the property where the embarrassing wads of cash were discovered following a break-in in the year 2020. Ramaphosa has not yet been charged with any wrongdoing in connection with the scandal.
According to the results of recent surveys, “Cyril,” who is seen as an approachable and level-headed leader, continues to enjoy widespread popularity in South Africa. This is much more than the party, which has been splintered by factions and has been losing ground in elections over the last decade in the face of poverty, massive inequality, crime, and frequent power outages that harm the economy. Many experts agree that the ANC doesn’t have a good alternative to Cyril Ramaphosa, who is still the party’s most valuable asset as it prepares for the 2024 general election.