Last chance saloon
EXCLUSIVE: Why this is the ANC’s last chance to get the economy right
One of Cyril Ramaphosa’s earliest colleagues, unionist James Motlatsi, believes that now is the time for the president to make his move, after being elected last week with 57% of the vote. But whether this is enough of a mandate to keep the jackals in his own party at bay is unclear. What is certain though is that if he fails now, the ANC will lose Gauteng in five years’ time, and it will be the beginning of the end
It’s do or die for the ANC. One small mistake at this point and the whole ship sinks in five years. If anyone in the governing party is of the view that a 57.5% share of the national vote is comfortable enough for them to waddle around without a care, as they’ve done for 25 years, then they need to reconcile themselves to losing Gauteng, just for a start. Losing Gauteng in five years will be almost as bad as losing the whole country. It will confirm the party is not in touch with the most populous, most influential and most progressive province, where the most educated cohort plays and lives. That prospect is imminent. The trend has established itself in the past three elections, as the ANC has dropped four or five percentage points without trying. Stopping this slide will require Herculean steps, including turning a stuttering economy around. This is especially since economic growth of just 2% (our best-case scenario for 2020) is not going to create serious new job numbers. Anythi...