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‘Writing always on the wall for ANC’s demise’

Written by on June 3, 2024

The writing has always been on the wall for the demise of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC), political scientist Rui Tyitende says.

This comes after the party failed to garner enough seats to form a government in last week’s national elections.

Speaking to Desert Radio on Monday, Tyitende said the ANC’s journey to self-destruction started about 14 years ago when it was riddled with state capture allegations, which saw billions in public funds being siphoned off through questionable tenders at the expense of service delivery.

Tyitende says the ANC’s poor election performance serves as a warning for other revolutionary parties in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) which have been failing to live up to the electorate’s expectations.

“The writing was always on the wall for the ANC. Even at the time I was at Stellenbosch for my studies we could see that the ANC’s popularity was dwindling,” he said.

The ANC was given a rude awakening by former president Jacob Zuma, who gave the party a bloody nose in one of South Africa’s major provinces, KwaZulu-Natal, where his uMkhonto we Sizwe party got 44% of the votes, compared to ANC’s 19%.

Tyitende says the ANC’s performance is a vivid reminder of how liberation movements in the region have lost the plot and have failed to deal with bread-and-butter issues in the past years.

Meanwhile, South Africa’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, has admitted his party has suffered a challenging election.

The ANC, once led by Nelson Mandela, won 159 seats in the 400-seat parliament in Wednesday’s election, down from 230 in the previous assembly.

Ramaphosa nevertheless described the results as a victory for democracy, calling on rival parties to find common ground in coalition talks.

The opposition Democratic Alliance party has said it is open to coalition talks with Ramaphosa, but opposes a number of his government’s key priorities. – Additional reporting BBC

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