There are a handful of ANC members calling for Ronald Lamola, the justice & correctional services minister, to be elevated to the deputy presidency of the party. They emphasise his age (he turns 39 on November 21), saying the party needs “new blood”. They point at the youthfulness of the UK’s Rishi Sunak (42), France’s Emmanuel Macron (44), Finland’s Sanna Marin (36), and others, and ask: Why is SA saddled with aged political leaders?

Lamola has agreed to run for the deputy presidency of the party. In my humble opinion, he has no chance of winning. Paul Mashatile, the current treasurer, has sewn up most of the votes for that position. That said, Lamola is someone to keep an eye on. He is one of very few people in the ANC right now who has the ethical grounding, the moral conviction, the reserves of energy, the policy nous, the intellectual depth and the bullheadedness needed to drive the philosophical and economic renewal the country needs if it is to save itself from destruct...

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