As debates over who takes up the presidential seat of the ruling ANC deepens, Northern Cape ANC chairperson Zamani Saul urges the party to adopt the US-style primaries in selecting their leaders.
Speaking during an interview with Bloomberg following his election at the weekend, the newly elected ANC Northern Cape chairperson Zamani Saul said the ruling party needed to modernise its method of choosing their political leaders or suffer its consequences at the 2019 polls.
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Saul is a strong supporter of the Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa faction who believe he is the best fit for the ANC presidential seat.
Saul was elected the party provincial chairman on May 12 after Sylvia Lucas, the premier of Northern Cape and Zuma ally, dropped out of the race.
He said that the ANC needed to reinvigorate itself as it prepared to elect a successor to President Jacob Zuma in December.
“We can’t continue to fossilised the movement,” Saul said in an interview.
“The ANC has to go through a thorough process of modernisation.” he added.
A supporter of Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, Zamani Saul was elected the party provincial chairman on May 12 after Sylvia Lucas, the premier of Northern Cape and Zuma ally, shockingly declined nomination at the provincial conference in Colesberg last Friday.
Ramaphosa appeared at the party conference that elected Saul. He was largely accepted by ANC members present at the voting centre.
The audience went on singing and making rolling hand signals used to indicate a substitution at soccer matches, a sign of their support for a new party leader and in his victory speech, Saul said Ramaphosa should succeed Zuma.
“There is a fear that by going through an intense process of organisational renewal, we are going to lose some of our values and traditions.
“To me, these are not mutually exclusive. You can modernise the party gradually and still retain the values and tradition that define and make it distinct from any other party,” Saul said.
The crisis within the ANC has largely been talked about with many foretelling the future of the party in the 2019 elections that will see the beginning of a new government.
While President Jacob Zuma sticks to his support for Dlamini-Zuma to succeed him, a lot more members believe his deputy, Ramaphosa stands a better chance of becoming the next party president and perhaps, the president of the Republic of South Africa.
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The party in the North Cape became the first province to declare support for Ramaphosa’s presidential campaign during the conference. However, the province accounts for just 5 percent of the ANC’s members at the last count in October 2015, the least of all the regions.