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Cyril Ramaphosa is a popular president, but he lacks a grassroots constituency within his own party, which has limped from crisis to crisis over the past decade. While analysis of the new cabinet selection has dominated the news, it is perhaps more prudent to focus on the leadership challenges he faces. He has inherited a set of problems that will require great ingenuity and resolve to overcome.

Under Jacob Zuma’s leadership, the ANC fragmented and lapsed into incoherence and dysfunction. In the quest to secure patronage and fund a political project characterised by corruption and self-enrichment, key state and government institutions and agencies were systematically eroded, resulting in state capture...

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