African National Congress set to replace President Jacob Zuma

Vastavam web: The African National Congress expects to announce the successor to President Jacob Zuma as party leader on Sunday when ANC delegates elect a new figurehead for the movement that has ruled South Africa since the end of apartheid.The vote is crucial because whoever emerges at the helm of the 105-year-old liberation movement that has electoral dominance in Africa’s most industrialised economy is likely to become South Africa’s next president after elections in 2019.Ramaphosa, 65, got the majority of nominations from party branches scattered across the country. But the complexity of the leadership race means it is far from certain he will win when the votes are finally counted.

Party spokesman Zizi Kodwa said the ANC hoped to declare a winner on Sunday, but this depended “on getting through the credentials process,” or vetting the eligibility of the delegates.Under ANC rules, a majority of nominations is not the same as the most votes at the conference and delegates are not bound to vote for a particular candidate.ANC Chairwoman Baleka Mbete – who is also the speaker of parliament – publicly endorsed Ramaphosa, online news service EWN reported.

Stan Itshegetseng, chairman of an ANC branch in Soweto, said: “I believe Cyril will win this election because the majority of ANC branches endorsed him.”Dlamini-Zuma pledged during her campaign to tackle the racial inequality that persists in South Africa since the end of white minority rule.Ramaphosa vowed to fight corruption and revitalise the economy. That message has gone down well with foreign investors.In a boost to Ramaphosa, courts ruled that officials from some provinces seen as supporting Dlamini-Zuma had been elected illegally and were barred from the conference. The rand currency firmed more than 2 percent after that news on Friday.