22 May 2019

South Africa: Cyril Ramaphosa Elected President While the ANC Factional Bombs Detonate in Full View

analysis

With a pledge to be the president for all, not just the governing ANC, President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday put his stamp on a stuttering day of political explosions. Watching from the president's bay in the public gallery was the politician at the centre of one such bang -- outgoing Deputy President David 'DD' Mabuza, who had bowed out from being sworn in as MP.

Wednesday was a day that saw the backroom machinations of the governing ANC dovetail with parliamentary procedure and ceremony. When President Cyril Ramaphosa stepped to the podium of the National Assembly after being elected unopposed, it was the moment he would set the tone for his presidency. And his call was for co-operation, collaboration and working together to meet the aspirations and expectations of all South Africans.

"I will be the president of all South Africans," he said on Wednesday, later adding: "I will, like Madiba did, walk with kings... and queens and captains of industry and all and sundry without losing the touch of the common people."

It was a tone that stood markedly different from the past decade when ANC election wins were touted triumphantly. And it was a tone that offered room...

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