18 December 2012

South Africa: The Return of the Buffalo

Photo: Presidency
President Jacob Zuma.


Far from wild life auction halls, Cyril Ramaphosa revived his almost-abandoned political career in Mangaung yesterday. Buffalo man exuded quiet confidence.

Yesterday when Zuma delivered his political report (cum-campaign speech) it was clear that he was also campaigning for Cyril. In his 14-page political report, Zuma made much mention of the National Development Plan. His soon-to-be Deputy President is also the Deputy Commissioner of the Planning Commission. The Plan has been the subject of much discussion within the alliance. Some have supported it and some haven't. Zuma made it clear yesterday that the ANC should look into throwing its full support behind the National Development Plan as anchor for future policy.

Cyril Ramaphosa will play an integral role in sorting out the ANC's policy woes. Since it came to power, the ANC has staggered from one policy to the next. The cost: confusion over key policy positions (land reform, nationalisation, state owned enterprises etc). The National Development Plan is a rational critique and plan for what South Africa needs to do to close the jarring socio-economic gap. If Cyril has his way, he could be enforcer-in-chief of the plan as Deputy President of the ANC (and possibly of the country too).

Ramaphosa's return to the political safari is laden with controversy. His affiliation to Lonmin as a non-executive director and his buffalo fetish drew attention. His probable election as the ANC's Deputy President will assert his dedication to the ANC and grow the support he already has.

As the Mangaung spectacle unfolds, we remain in political wilderness. The political safari is laden with the Big 5 and, the return of the Buffalo is imminent.

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