'Cyril Ramaphosa’s ruthlessness goes beyond what you’d expect'

President Cyril Ramaphosa at the ANC celebrations outside Luthuli House on 12 May 2019. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

President Cyril Ramaphosa - one of the most popular politicians in South Africa - has now earned his mandate by leading the African National Congress (ANC) to victory in Wednesday’s general election.

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield finds out more about Ramaphosa from Anthony Butler, Professor of Political Studies at the University of Cape Town.

Butler, in 2008, penned what was then a definitive biography of Ramaphosa.

...He used intimidation, charm, humour in rapid succession at the negotiating table… He inspired almost awe among his own activists within the union structures because of his exceptional calm under pressure…

Anthony Butler, Professor of Political Studies - University of Cape Town

Description of Butler’s “Cyril Ramaphosa” on Amazon:

The extraordinary rise of one of South Africa’s most celebrated political leaders and his contributions to the country’s liberation movement are thoroughly chronicled in this insightful account.

From his humble beginnings in turbulent Johannesburg to his appointment as general secretary of the National Union of Mineworkers, this biography offers a frank appraisal of Ramaphosa's achievements and limitations.

For more detail listen to the interview in the audio below (and scroll down for quotes from it).

Simple survival and the ability to rise to the top… demonstrates a degree of ruthlessness… that goes beyond what you expect… The proof of ruthlessness is in the outcomes rather than the noise…

Anthony Butler, Professor of Political Studies - University of Cape Town

He has a political pretext… for culling a large number of professional politicians… There’s no way of ducking the pain that’s going to cause… We will see who he chooses…

Anthony Butler, Professor of Political Studies - University of Cape Town

There’s a big hole to get out of first… it’s a country with enormous potential… [it’ll take] political risks… the real obstacle to Ramaphosa’s project is the nature of the ANC itself…

Anthony Butler, Professor of Political Studies - University of Cape Town

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