The anticipation is building up as the ANC Mangaung conference draws nearer and nearer, much like the Polokwane conference that saw former President Thabo Mbeki getting recalled from his position before his term ended, this conference is also expected to go down in history.
The cracks have been showing for quite a while that suggest that the ruling party is divided, as some factions within the ANC feel that President Jacob Zuma should not run for a second term, while others are adamant that he should.
As expected, after the president steps down or finishes his term, whatever the case, the person who has to take over from him is his deputy and in this case the deputy president is Kgalema Motlanthe who hasn’t expressed much interest in challenging Zuma for the hot seat, until recently.
It is said that during the launch of his biography, Motlanthe dropped a few hints that he would be willing to challenge Zuma in Mangaung.
Now looking at Zuma’s track record since taking up office, you can’t help but feel he should have recalled himself. It is shameful to say the least. Let’s look at a few examples:
1. One of the first things he did was get rid of the Scorpions. (After his corruption case he could not afford to have the Scorpions keeping him under a microscope, so they had to go)
2. He got married at every chance he could get (If the tax payers can support you and your wives, wouldn’t you want to marry as many times as you can?)
3. Last year municipal workers embarked on a nationwide strike, their demand was to have salary increments. Government’s response was that there wasn’t money for the salary increases but during that same period South Africa gave a R2 billion loan to Swaziland.
4. He continuously turned a blind eye while Julius Malema ran his mouth off, insulting people, creating divisions among the racial groups in South Africa. The only time Malema was finally brought to book for his misconduct was when he turned on Zuma and started publicly attacking him, even though a few years ago he was willing to take arms and kill for Zuma (very transparent indeed Mr President)
5. Then there is the ridiculous overspending, he wanted to buy a plane for R2 billion, the alleged R200 million renovations to his Nkandla home, the idea of building Zumaville.
Now looking at Kgalema Motlanthe, he has run the country before, he had to take over from Thabo Mbeki when he was recalled, until Zuma took over after the 2009 elections.
When comparing Motlanthe to Zuma, he is very quiet or ‘soft’ and I believe that is the wrong quality to possess as a president because he may very well end up being a pushover.
And I do believe when he was the interim president it was just by name and that he was a puppet on a string to the powers that be at the ANC.
Another thing that may make Motlanthe less suitable for the presidency is his association with ousted problem child of the ANCYL Julius Malema. We all know the minute Motlanthe takes over from Zuma, he will bring Malema back to the ANC and quite frankly Malema will be the downfall of the ANC and the country as a whole.
So, looking at the two men, who do you think should occupy the hotly contested seat?
I say neither because the person in my opinion who would have done an impressive job as a president is Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma and she was strategically removed and given the AU job she is currently doing. But look at her track record, she excelled as health minister, foreign affairs minister and minister of home affairs.