The 54th National Conference of the African National Congress (South Africa’s ruling political party) is set to start on Friday at an exhibition center near Johannesburg. The event is more or less the equivalent of the national party conventions we have in the United States before a presidential election. By Sunday, the ANC will have elected a new chairperson, and it is very likely that this person will become South Africa’s new president as an outcome of the 2019 national elections.
Even though Cyril Ramaphosa served as deputy president of South Africa under President Jacob Zuma since 2014, many (most?) South Africans hope that he will prevail over his rival Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, ex-wife of Jacob Zuma. It is time to pay serious attention to South Africa’s economic challenges and clean out the worst of the vast corruption and cronyism in the Zuma administration. Ramaphosa has tweeted that he wants to address infrastructure challenges, and wants to target a 5% growth rate for South Africa’s developing economy (currently at about 1% annual growth).