The outcome of the motion of no confidence in the president was not a victory for Jacob Zuma, but for the ANC and ironically also for civil society, multiparty democracy and our courts.
I have held the view that the ANC cannot afford to let Zuma go through an initiative sponsored by the opposition, since that would be perceived as a political defeat. But the fact that he so narrowly survived is very positive.
The ANC inputs during the no-confidence debate made it clear that this round was not about Zuma, but about political survival. The chances are good that he will not survive until December, but if he does, that will be his endgame. He will lose the ANC presidency then, which will render him more vulnerable.
The party now finally realises that Zuma has become a liability ahead of the 2019 election. The build-up to the motion illustrated coalition politics in action. Civil society, opposition parties, our courts and patriots within the ANC in effect formed one big coalition, something not even seen during the struggle against apartheid. The spirit that led to the end of apartheid is becoming visible again.
There is light at the end of a dark tunnel.