The ANC's new secretary general has been an ardent supporter of President Jacob Zuma and is highly respected in his own province. Ace Magashule's selection came as a balm to presidential candidate Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma's camp after she lost out to Cyril Ramaphosa.
Magashule had been on Dlamini Zuma's slate during her campaign for the ANC presidency.
While Magashule has been around for a long time, there is much we don't know about him. For starters, his first name is not Ace. Here are five interesting facts about the man who takes over from Gwede Mantashe as a pivotal figure in the ANC's top structure.
* His full name is Elias Sekgobelo Magashule.
* He has been the Premier of the Free State since 2009.
* In 2015 Magashule reportedly spent more than R5 million on luxurious Mercedes Benz cars for a number of Free State top officials.
* Ace Magashule has been implicated in the Vrede Dairy scandal which allegedly saw R180 million in public money being funnelled to the Gupta family through a complex network of companies.
* In October this year Magashule was awarded an honrary doctorate by Bahcesehir University in Turkey.