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Ramaphosa Calls for Unity Following Historic Setback for ANC

Ramaphosa Calls for Unity Following Historic Setback for ANC

Ramaphosa Urges Unity as ANC Faces Historic Setback

President Cyril Ramaphosa called upon South African party leaders to collaborate in the public interest following a significant blow to the ANC, which lost its 30-year-old governing majority in a challenging general election.

However, signs of potential turmoil emerged as the former president Jacob Zuma, tainted by corruption scandals, boycotted the results ceremony, and his uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) party, ranking third, refused to acknowledge the results.

The final count allocated 159 seats in the 400-seat National Assembly to the ANC, marking its lowest score in a general election. The DA secured 87 seats, Zuma’s MK attained 58, and the EFF received 39, with various minority groups following suit.

The ANC’s vote share plummeted to just over 40 percent, down from the 57 percent it secured in 2019.

The new parliament is set to convene within two weeks, tasked with electing a president to form a new government. With no outright winner for the first time since South Africa’s post-apartheid era, the ANC will need to seek external support to ensure Ramaphosa’s re-election.

In his address following the official results ceremony, Ramaphosa emphasized the importance of respecting the final results and working together, without providing a direct indication of his strategy regarding potential alliances.

Meanwhile, the DA’s veteran leader, John Steenhuisen, reiterated his commitment to collaborating with the ANC to prevent what he termed the “Doomsday Coalition” involving the ruling party, Zuma’s MK, and the EFF. He criticized the MK and EFF manifestos for their proposals to nationalize privately owned land and undermine judicial independence.

ANC secretary general Fikile Mbalula disclosed that the party was engaged in exploratory discussions with various parties and expressed the hope of reaching a deal swiftly.

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