Pres. Cyril Ramaphosa’s position as ANC leader is not secure because he does not have a proper support base in the party.
So says prof. André Duvenhage, a North West University political analyst, over the party’s 108th birthday celebrations this past weekend in Kimberley.
“The political and economic crises in the country are bigger than ever. What is needed now is an ANC that can govern and manage it.
“One actually expected Ramaphosa to deliver a kind of ‘February 2’ speech in which he was sending the country in a certain direction and taking the ANC with him,” Duvenhage said on Sunday morning, referring to former press. FW de Klerk’s historic speech on February 2, 1990 when he announced Nelson Mandala’s release.
“The outcome on Saturday (with his ‘January 8 speech’) was 180 ° in the opposite direction. The division in the ANC is huge.
“Look at one example. The cake they carried with the birthday celebrations was in the shape of a coffin. I can give you the assurance the message was to say it was Ramaphosa’s coffin. “
Duvenhage says Ramaphosa’s opponents in the ANC are using the Eskom crisis as a stick to reach the president and lift him out of the pillows.
“Jabu Mabuza has already resigned as chairman of Eskom and now we read in the media that there is tremendous pressure on Pravin Gordhan (Minister of Public Enterprises) to be moved out.
“If you look at the policy issues that Ramaphosa referred to in his speech on Saturday, it is not even a proper dusting of existing policy. It is rhetoric and totally nonsensical, ”he says.
“If you look at how many people attended the main festivities on Saturday (only about a third of the expected 35 000 people showed up), it is clear that there are many major problems in the ANC.
“There are people in the ANC who believe Ramaphosa will not deliver the so-called January 8 speech next year. They believe he may be in trouble with the ANC’s important general council meeting in June.
“The whole thing is a mess. People who were there tell me Ramaphosa was furious about adj. David Mabuza’s comments on Eskom. That’s why he canceled all his commitments on Friday.
“In a way, what happened this weekend in Kimberley can be seen as a victory for the ‘state hijackers’.
“It is clear that Mabuza has turned away from Ramaphosa and is now joining the camp of Ace Magashule (ANC secretary general). Mabuza is now Magashule’s candidate to become president.
“Mabuza is the only way the Magashules can survive in the party and escape possible prosecution. They hope that he (Mabuza) will become president and suspend the Zondo Commission (after state hijacking), ”Duvenhage believes.
With the ANC leadership election in December 2017, Mabuza played a decisive role in Ramaphosa’s election as ANC president.
Another political analyst, dr. Ralph Mathekga, also believes Mabuza emerged over the weekend as an ever-increasing contender for the ANC’s leadership in the future.
“It seems to many in the ANC that he is talking straight about problems.
“Obviously, the divide in the ANC is getting bigger. The ANC speaks and moves in different directions, ”says Mathekga.