Who is Cyril Ramaphosa?

Eyewitness News takes a look at ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa’s profile.

Cyril Ramaphosa at the ANC Elective Conference in Mangaung on 16 December 2012. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Cyril Ramphosa has been elected the new African National Congress (ANC) deputy president.

Ramaphosa, who turned 60 just before the ANC's national conference in Mangaung, was born in Soweto on November 17, 1952.

He is a lawyer, trade union leader, activist, politician and in more recent times, a prominent figure in the business community.

Ramaphosa is regarded by many as one of the country's most respected leaders, both inside and outside of the ANC.

Veteran journalist Alistair Sparks says he is an extremely skilled man.

He said Ramaphosa proved to be an extraordinarily able politician, a shrewd negotiator and a strategist of note during his time as ANC secretary general during the Convention for a Democratic South Africa (Codesa) talks.

Together with Roelf Meyer of the National Party, Ramaphosa played a crucial role during negotiations to bring about a peaceful end to apartheid and steer the country towards its first democratic elections in 1994.

Ramphosa is also known for building up the National Union of Mineworkers (Num).

The markets are expected to find comfort in Ramaphosa's election, with the rand already strengthening by almost one percent against the United States dollar.