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Vol 53 No 11

Published 25th May 2012

South Africa

The leadership race opens up

The contest for the presidential nomination is stirring up a lot of mud, and harming the governing party and the entire country

The battle for succession in the African National Congress is getting nastier as its outcome looks more uncertain. Supporters of the main protagonists fight their battles, firstly within the ANC structures, then in the security services, the courts and the state broadcasting service. For months, the main contest was between national President Jacob Zuma, who seeks re-election as ANC President, and the party’s Deputy President, Kgalema Motlanthe. Now, the field is opening up, with Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale and business tycoon Cyril Ramaphosa emerging as serious contenders. Even long-term backers of Zuma now concede that he might not be able to finish a second presidency but argue that he is needed to steer the party through the next few troubled years.

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