South Africa prepares itself for ‘President Mabuza’

South Africa prepares itself for ‘President Mabuza’

Deputy President David Mabuza in parliament, Cape Town, 27 February 2019. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane / African News Agency (ANA)

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s position is under threat following a new report from the public protector.

Following the release of Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s report finding that President Cyril Ramaphosa was guilty of violating the constitution and misleading parliament relating to donations made by Bosasa’s Gavin Watson to his CR17 campaign for the ANC presidency, it makes sense that South Africans would question his future as our president.

This has led to the conclusion by many on Twitter that we should start preparing for the inauguration of a person one user described as the “president in waiting” – current vice president David “DD” Mabuza, sometimes referred to by his nickname, “the cat”.

Mabuza’s status as deputy president came into question earlier this year, when he delayed his swearing-in, saying he wanted to first deal with a report that found him to have brought the ANC into disrepute.

READ MORE: Ramaphosa ‘deliberately misled parliament’ on Watson donation, Mkhwebane finds

The report, which identified Mabuza among 22 allegedly problematic candidates, led to “the cat” meeting with the ANC’s internal integrity commission to plead his case, after which he made his return as deputy president.

While Ramaphosa’s future is not known at this point – whether or not Mkhwebane’s report, which gives Ramaphosa one month to disclose all the donations to his campaign to become ANC president, would result in his departure is unclear – as far as Twitter is concerned, Mabuza’s promotion is a done deal.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema was ahead of the curve in calling for South Africa to ready themselves for the possibility of a Mabuza presidency.

“If Ramaphosa goes down, you may want to prepare for a president called DD Mabuza because there is nothing on him,” he said at a press conference earlier in July at the EFF headquarters in Braamfontein.

Malema said he believed that while there was no “tangible evidence of corruption against” Mabuza, there “is something tangible” against President Cyril Ramaphosa.

READ MORE: Mkhwebane suspects Ramaphosa of money laundering

Malema said the donations to Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign for the ANC presidency – that have since resulted in the report released by Mkhwebane – make any allegations against Mabuza look like “toilet gossip”.

“It is looking extremely bad for Ramaphosa and the likelihood is that he would not finish his term. I like him but he has to comply with the law. He has to sort out the problem otherwise he is going to be in trouble,” Malema said.

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