Cyril gets cosy with Zuma at celebration

Former president Jacob Zuma and President Cyril Ramaphosa interact at the ANC’s January 8 celebration at Inanda’s JL Dube Stadium on Tuesday
Former president Jacob Zuma and President Cyril Ramaphosa interact at the ANC’s January 8 celebration at Inanda’s JL Dube Stadium on Tuesday
Image: Thuli Dlamini

President Cyril Ramaphosa dedicated the opening of his January 8 address to reassure ANC supporters of his good relationship with former president Jacob Zuma as the crowd notably cheered his predecessor more than him.

ANC supporters who gathered for a rally marking the party’s January 8 celebrations‚ at Inanda’s JL Dube Stadium, made known their support for Zuma.

As Ramaphosa took the podium‚ he thanked Zuma for being president while the crowd cheered incessantly for the former president.

Zuma accompanied Ramaphosa to the rally – in an area known to have been his stronghold since his tenure as ANC deputy leader.

When ANC provincial chair Sihle Zikalala introduced Ramaphosa the crowd was mostly quiet‚ while they broke out in chants and cheers when Zuma was introduced.

Ramaphosa dismissed talk that he would be reprimanding Zuma.

“He is now a former president‚ I will use him for different [tasks‚ as] former presidents have experience and knowledge‚” he told the hundreds gathered to mark the ANC’s 107th birthday celebrations.

Ramaphosa recounted his history with Zuma further‚ saying he is the “luckiest president in recent years in the ANC”‚ because two former ANC leaders were still alive – Zuma and Thabo Mbeki.

Ramaphosa did not enjoy support from most of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal in the run-up to his election as ANC leader at the party’s 2017 conference.

However‚ there has been an effort in the ANC to paper over the wounds. – TimesLIVE

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