Jacob Zuma’s successor to be announced on Sunday
Johannesburg, Dec. 15, 2017 (AltAfrika) -South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) expects to announce Jacob Zuma’s successor as party leader on Sunday, a spokesman said, concluding a bruising leadership battle that threatens to tear it apart before 2019 election
The race between Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, a former cabinet minister and ex-wife of President Zuma, the two frontrunners to replace Zuma, is too close to call.
The stakes are high because the ANC’s electoral dominance means whoever wins the party’s top job is likely to become the next president of South Africa after the next national election.
Party spokesman Zizi Kodwa said on Friday that the ANC would aim to announce the new leader and five other top positions during its Dec. 16-20 conference.
“On Sunday morning as we arrive we should be able to make an announcement of the top six and take nomination of the rest of the leadership. We need to take out this item from the conference agenda as quickly as possible,” he told radio station 702.
Political instability, including the question of who will replace Zuma, has been cited by credit rating agencies as a major factor behind their decision to cut South Africa to “junk”.
Trade has been cautious in the rand and bonds this week, with investors awaiting the outcome of the ANC leadership race.
Some analysts say that the bitterness of the contest has increased the chances of the party splitting after the conference. Party officials insist members will accept the outcome and avoid a fallout.