President of the African National Congress (ANC) Cyril Ramaphosa might have survived a grueling National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting in Nasrec over the weekend, but this does not mean the battle for the soul of the governing party is over.
This is according to political analyst Professor André Duvenhage in response to the NEC meeting which appeared to have had the Phala Phala scandal involving Ramaphosa at the centre of discussions over the weekend.
The NEC meeting in question was the last one before the much anticipated national elective conference of the ANC to be held in December.
Speaking to The Citizen, Duvenhage said in the event that Ramaphosa emerges victorious at the elective conference, there will be a lot of resistance and to an extent an element of a breakaway.
“Another thing is if Ramaphosa loses the leadership race, the divisions in the ANC will be even worse and this is bad for the ANC ahead of the 2024 general election,” said Duvenhage.
Duvenhage says there appears to be a new alliance forming against Ramaphosa which comprises leaders such as Paul Mashatile, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Supra Mahumapelo and Lindiwe Sisulu.
“However there also seems to be an interesting figure showing up and that is Paul Mashatile who seems to now be going against Ramaphosa and I think the balance of forces could be determined by Mashatile,” said Duvenhage.
Mashatile’s name has been touted as a possible succeeder to current ANC deputy president David Mabuza after the elective conference.
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, on the other hand, has accepted nomination for president of the ANC.
Duvenhage is of the view the ANC needs to deviate from its old ideologies, stressing that it will be almost impossible for the party to successfully renew itself.
He said the fact that leaders such as Zweli Mkhize and Ramaphosa are implicated in wrongdoing will hurt the ANC in the 2024 polls.
Another political analyst Dr. Ntsikelelo Breakfast is of the opinion that the only thing that can stand in the way of Ramaphosa being re-elected in December is the Phala Phala scandal.
“He (Ramaphosa) might have survived the onslaught during the party’s NEC meeting over the weekend but it is not over yet because there is still the independent parliamentary report into this scandal which is expected this week,” said Breakfast.
He said the renewal of the ANC with or without Ramaphosa at the helm of the party remains a mission impossible.
“You still have those who were associated with Jacob Zuma who think that Ramaphosa is out to destroy them and their careers hence they continue putting pressure on him over the Phala Phala matter,” Breakfast said.
Ultimately it is all about power for politicians as it gives them access to state machinery and a comfortable life, adding that power will always be contested in the ANC, Breakfast concluded.