Later today, we will meet the ANC’s top six candidates for the elective conference which will take place between December 16-21. It’s an announcement that may bring some surprises, but it’s also likely to spell the end of the political careers of early season activists like Lindiwe Sisulu. The chances of a woman leading the soon-to-be 111-year-old party are unlikely this season, nor for the next 100 at this rate, with Nkosasana Dlamani-Zuma in a rather unhealthy position as well.
It may have taken a little longer than expected, but it looks like the “first league” lobbying group made up of former Free State Prime Ministers – Ace Magashule – North West – Supra Mahumapelo “Black Jesus” – and Mpumalanga – David Mabuza – who once dominated in years past lost all power. This is especially true if Mabuza loses his position as Vice President. What will be the fate of him in the match with Paul Mashatile probably to take his place, unless there is another conspiracy that we will find out about.
There are certainly changes afoot in the party with its former chairman, Jacob Zuma, running for the presidency himself, in control, who now appears to be finally dead and buried.
It should mark the last lap of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s victory, however, there is the matter of Phala Phala, and even if it manages to pass a parliamentary investigation, there is the matter of the violation of currency exchange rules, which should be sanctioned by the Reserve Bank. A sanction that may mean that he would have to “step aside” as president of the party and, in turn, president of the state. What happens after that is not as simple as one would think.
ANC parliamentarians will have to rally around choosing a president until the 2024 elections take place, a task that is not so simple. If they can’t, then National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, who would act as president should Ramaphosa have to step down, may well have to call early elections. Will the party be prepared for such a possibility?
But this is just my mind running with things, the ANC of course has all these equations in mind and its center will overcome these challenges as well. (Believe it, and you will believe anything I tell you.) Whatever the permutations of the Phala Phala report, Zuma’s possible return to jail, Eskom’s continued collapse, one can be sure that 2023 will be the continuation of a life lived in interesting times. the mail and guardian will be with you at all times.