ANC secretary general Ace Magashule says the numerical decline of the governing party during the 2019 general elections was a sign of a maturing democracy.
The ANC has slipped from 62% in 2014 to 57% in 2019.
Speaking to Inside Politic on the sidelines of the IEC results centre, Magashule defended the party’s poor performance, saying this has happened globally where liberation had been in power for 25 years.
Opposition parties are trying to isolate president Cyril Ramaphosa from the ANC like they did with Nelson Mandela, says ANC secretary general Ace Magashule. #SAElections2019 pic.twitter.com/TLPhcn3Aoq— Inside Politics (@InsidePolitics8) May 10, 2019
“We are happy that our democracy is maturing. We had 48 political parties on the ballot paper. That’s out of this world. Globally, politics do change 25 years after freedom. This is where we are. Many other young people who were born after apartheid have voted. This calls upon us as the ANC to get on the ground and to be in touch with the youth and build a strong youth league. We are happy because we are still governing South Africa,” said Magashule.
Magashule dismissed suggestions that it was President Cyril Ramaphosa alone who rescued the party from being voted out of power during the 2019 general elections.
“[The opposition parties] should not do what they tried to do with Nelson Mandela by isolating him from the collective. We still have as the ANC leadership, even myself, full confidence in President Cyril Ramaphosa. There’s no way we can doubt a leader elected by structures of the movement whether you like it or not. We respect him, he is our leader but he is part of the collective,” said Magashule.
He said ordinary members and volunteers of the ANC worked harder than the leaders themselves to ensure the ANC remains in power. “What can the ANC be without volunteers, without communities and without supporters and friends and the masses of our people … So you can’t elevate anybody except that you might say, yes, president Ramaphosa has energized most of us. Yes, he has contributed a lot, but he is part of the collective,” said Magashule.