African National Congress (ANC) presidential aspirant Cyril Ramaphosa, on Sunday, presented an African long-horned Watusi cattle to Zulu king, Zwelinthini Goodwill.
Ramaphosa made the befitting donation while paying homage to the Zulu king in KwaZulu-Natal at the eNyokeni Royal Palace in Nongoma as part of his campaign event in the region.
The excited monarch, in turn, gave the presidential hopeful a Nguni hide battle shield. According to reports, Ramaphosa’s visit in the palace coincided with the visit of the Ebuhleni faction of the Shembe Baptist Church for their annual royal pilgrimage.
Ramaphosa’s spokesperson Sithembiso Mshengu also confirmed that the ANC presidential hopeful paid homage to the King but that the Shembe church’s visit was a coincidence.
“The deputy president is here in Nongoma and Jozini to address send-off rallies. Yes, he is currently meeting with the His Majesty and is accompanied by Mike Mabuyakhulu.”
Ramaphosa’s final campaign push in the region saw thousands of his supporters – from Pongola, Richards Bay, Vryheid and Mpumalanga – filled the KwaGqikazi stadium.
When spokespersonMshengu was asked why they chose to campaign in the region, he replied:
“We chose the two regions to hold rallies in because this is where our candidates did well in the nominations by the BGMs (branch general meetings).”
“We did well here in Abaqulusi and in the Far North region and it is befitting that the two regions convene a send-off rally for him.”
With less than one month to go to the ANC elective conference, political battles have been playing out in ANC branch meetings in preparation for the party’s conference in December.
So far, most of the nominations have been predictable. While Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has been getting most of the reported nominations for president in Gauteng, in KwaZulu-Natal, ANC MP Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma has been leading the pack.
The other presidential candidates which include ANC Treasurer-General Zweli Mkhize, National speaker Baleka Mbete, Mathews Phosa and Jeff Radebe are all lower down the list.
Last week, deputy President Ramaphosa’s announced his preferred leadership slate, should he become president, triggering criticism from within the ANC
Those on his slate include South Africa science and technology minister Naledi Pandor as his deputy, Mantashe for chairperson, former KwaZulu-Natal premier Senzo Mchunu for secretary-general, former minister Thoko Didiza as his deputy, and Gauteng ANC chairperson Paul Mashathile for treasurer-general.