Magashule betrayed his factional loyalties by refusing to give credit to a man who might have changed the ANC’s fortunes. I noticed Magashule’s utterances stunned Pule Mabe, who was accompanying him.
It is true that organisations value teamwork. However, there are outstanding players whose performance shines and can therefore not go unnoticed. By the same token, Ramaphosa has his downside.
I am writing this submission as a card-carrying member of the PAC without any political axe to grind.
Let me point out Ramaphosa’s strengths. The first is that he is a polyglot and speaks to different African communities in their African languages.
He applies what PAC founding president Robert Sobukwe referred to as the African Personality. The African Personality is made up of three interrelated factors, which are linguistic, historical and psychological.
None of his immediate predecessors employed this approach, not even Magashule’s favourite, Jacob Zuma, whose leadership brought electoral misfortune to the ANC.
President Ramaphosa’s second strength is that he is respectful, humble and measured in his tone and speech. He is probably a good listener. These are the qualities of a good leader. Ramaphosa won’t stand on a public platform and hurl insults at anybody.
When EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu showed him the middle finger in Parliament, he didn’t reciprocate.
Anybody who is observant must have noticed that the politics of identity are part of South Africa’s social fabric. Zuma’s exit from the political scene saw a spike in votes for the IFP. The ANC got more votes in Limpopo, probably because of Ramaphosa. Because of reactionary politics - and not Afrikaner nationalism - FF Plus votes increased and DA votes decreased.
These are white political parties. Maybe there are white people who voted for the ANC because of Ramaphosa.
When Magashule denies that Ramaphosa changed the electoral fortunes of the ANC, he is being unrealistic.
If, as they always claim, Nelson Mandela waved a magic wand and drew support to the ANC, and Zuma brought Zulu support to the ANC, why can’t that be the case with Ramaphosa?
Ramaphosa’s weakness is that he is too close to the white ruling elite who will hamper his mandate to serve his constituency, which emerged from centuries of oppression. He cannot serve two masters at the same time.