Bantu Church of Christ pledges support to Cyril Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa with Bantu Church of Christ Bishop John Bolana and his wife
President Cyril Ramaphosa with Bantu Church of Christ Bishop John Bolana and his wife
Image: Nomazima Nkosi

The Bantu Church of Christ in Nelson Mandela Bay is 100% behind President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa, who is expected to go on the campaign trail in Nelson Mandela Bay later on Sunday ahead of the May 8 general election, paid the church in New Brighton a courtesy visit on Saturday night.

He was met at the church by Bishop John Bolana, a cleric - said to be close to former President Jacob Zuma - who is believed to have two million followers.

Ramaphosa received a warm welcome at the church where congregants waited in the rain for his arrival, screaming in excitement as he arrived and stepped out of his car.

Congregant Mzwanele Maqhajana was among them, and pledged the church’s support.

“We know who we will be looking out for. We will be looking for our president's beautiful face and placing our X next to his face,” Maqhajana said.

"As it is tradition with the ruling party, all presidents of the African National Congress visit the church when they are in Nelson Mandela Bay so that they can receive blessings for the work they're about to do because the leaders serving in the party are God's children.”

The congregants then proceeded to sing hymns and the popular Phakama Ramaphosa" much to the president's delight before he and Bolana went inside the bishop's office for a private meeting.

Speaking outside the church ANC head of the presidency Zizi Kodwa said the Bantu Church of Christ had always been the home of the ANC.

Kodwa said that there was never any doubt regarding who the church supported.

"The people of Bantu Church of Christ have never sat on the fence when it comes to the ANC. Tonight they've said that come May 8, they will vote for the African National Congress and there's never been any doubt about that,” Kodwa said.

"The reverberation and manner in which we have been received signifies how this church feels about the ANC.”

Ramaphosa is expected to meet residents from Kleinskool at the George Botha Hall at 10:30am on Sunday before moving to Nangoza Jebe Hall in New Brighton, then to the NU29 Community Hall where he will address residents.