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South Africa: Ramaphosa is still popular despite scandals

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Jerome Delay/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved.

South Africa

The ANC, South Africa's historic ruling party, re-elected Cyril Ramaphosa as its president on Monday, after he escaped impeachment proceedings a few days ago. He has also been in trouble for several months because of his involvement in a burglary case. But the head of state remains very popular in his country despite some criticism.

"It's not good news. He was involved in the Phala Phala farm scandal and I heard that it was a violation of the law. Isn't he breaking a law or something? He should step down if he is involved in fraud and money laundering, because what kind of president does that? We don't want a criminal as president, so he should resign," says student Hilda Mpiana.

"I wish him the best now that he is back to being party president. I just want him to have the chance to give his best and do the best he can. That's what I wish him. As president, he has to do what is right for the nation and serve the people as they deserve in this life," says entrepreneur Andrew Esterhuisen.

Cyril Ramaphosa, 70, is well on his way to a second term as president, should the ANC win the 2024 general election.

"I expected Cyril Ramaphosa to win. Before this party conference, he was in pretty good shape despite or perhaps because of the Phala Phala scandal. He has shown some political dynamism in the last two weeks and I think his party has responded well to that.

Clearly, as a President who had set out to rebuild public life and fight corruption, these scandals have raised a question mark over his integrity as President. He must therefore work hard to rebuild trust and to show the will and determination of his government to fight corruption," explains political analyst Richard Calland.

The head of state has not been charged in the burglary case, but the police investigation is ongoing. Should he be caught up in the scandal, the constitution provides for his vice president to succeed him.

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