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'Don’t be allergic about Ramaphosa' - Mbalula to Magashule

Magashule knows Ramaphosa was a game-changer, says the ANC elections head.

Fikile Mbalula takes to the stage at the ANC memorial for Winnie Mandela at the UJ Soweto campus on Monday 9 April 2018. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - African National Congress (ANC) secretary-general Ace Magashule needs to understand that Cyril Ramaphosa is the president of the ANC. That’s according to ANC head of elections Fikile Mbalula on Friday.

Mbalula was speaking to Eyewitness News on the sidelines of the vote count taking place at the Electoral Commission of South Africa national results operation centre in Tshwane.

“Don’t be allergic about Ramaphosa. He is your president.”

On Friday, Magashule told Eyewitness News that Ramaphosa should not take the credit for the ANC’s likely win in the national elections. Mbalula said on Thursday if the ANC did not have Ramaphosa as president, the ANC would have dipped to 40% in its elections. He repeated this to Eyewitness News on Friday.

Ramaphosa has been credited with playing a big part in the ANC retaining support - even by the movement’s leaders itself.

Internal ANC polls also showed Ramaphosa polling much higher on support than the ANC itself. With over 90% of the votes counted, the ANC is currently sitting at 57.29% of national votes.

Mbalula further said Magashule knew the polls were showing positively for the president.

“Ramaphosa was a game-changer. He knows that,” Mbalula said. “Of course it’s not a one-man show. The president knows that. We know that."

“We came into the election with the stigma that we are corrupt and only listen to ourselves … we are self-correcting,” Mbalula said.

Eyewitness News asked Magashule earlier if he thought Ramaphosa's popularity played a role in the ANC victory.

“Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa is not the candidate premier. It’s about the ANC, not the individual.”

He added that the ANC was not about individuals.

“The people who made us win the elections are volunteers, communities and people who love the ANC. The ANC has never been about an individual.”

The ANC has been dogged by factional differences throughout the elections, with some saying former president Jacob Zuma’s supporters were organising to challenge Ramaphosa.

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