When I was a teen in the 90s, my mom would have none of Cyril Ramaphosa. Whenever he’d appear on TV, mom would mutter something under her breath. I paid little attention to him until he reappeared as a big businessman and later re-entered politics. All I knew is that he played a role during CODESA and the draught of the constitution and that he seemed to was popular among white folks for some reason. Oh, and that he was the guy holding the microphone during Nelson Mandela’s first speech after his release in Cape Town.
The first time I started to form an opinion is when he was elected Deputy President of the ANC at Mangaung. I hoped that he would live up to the hype and make a positive impact on the ruling party and, consequently, the country. He could only have a positive effect on Zuma, right?
WRONG! My hopes were unceremoniously dashed when he made the “boer” comment in Seshego and then followed it up with the stock-standard nonsensical ANC spin. Yep, it appeared as though old Cyril was just another patron of the Zulu-Nostra (a term I happened upon the other day; nice huh?), back to pay his dues after an incredible stint in the business world (wink, nudge). Nothing to see here folks. Go be about your business. I guess my mom’s apprehension prepared me for this eventuality.
Moreover, I thought the guy was supposed to be well spoken. I found him rather inarticulate at the Mandela memorial service. He demanded little attention, as far as I am concerned, only a tad bit more that his co-host, whoever she was.
If any doubt remained in my mind, it went with Cyril on the campaign trail. Be sure to look out for him in your city, calling the opposition “mickey mouse parties” and “mafikizolos”, chipping away at our democracy and spewing ANC propaganda in a vain that would make Joseph Goebbels proud. At this rate, Mac (the-blunt-knife) Maharaj will be needing an assistant. This guy is more of a Zuma clone than Juju ever was! Jacob's Ramaphosa.
So as it were and in spite of myself, still I wait... Either for the Zulu-Nostra to self-destruct, or for the ANC to produce a faction that reveals even the slightest semblance of an inclination to serve this country and its people. Oh, well...