South Africa’s DP Cyril Ramaphosa backed to succeed Zuma


South Africa’s deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday received a huge boost in his bid to succeed President Jacob Zuma after a powerful union group backed him to succeed the incumbent as head of the ruling party.

Zuma is expected to stand down as African National Congress (ANC) president at a party conference in December next year, ahead of national elections in 2019 when his tenure as president will end.

Ramaphosa, a former anti-apartheid leader popular with investors, is likely to face strong competition if he does throw his hat in the ring, including from Zuma’s ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who is head of the African Union.

Reuters reports the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), which is part of the ruling political alliance and claims to represent 1.8 million workers, to have become the latest to weigh into the succession politics, telling reporters it had “resolved to campaign” for Ramaphosa.