Opinion

Cyril Ramaphosa shares stinging criticism of “corrupt” Jacob Zuma

Sparks are already flying on the ANC campaign trail: Cyril Ramaphosa has laid into “the nine years of corruption” Jacob Zuma inflicted upon South Africa.

Courtesy of The South African

by Tom Head

Almost a year after Cyril Ramaphosa replaced Jacob Zuma as president, tensions have been simmering between the pair: In recent months, JZ has become more politically active and, at times, has undermined the rule of his replacement.

As EWN report, He’s picked up where he left off in 2018, again making reference to “nine years of corruption” during a rally in KwaZulu-Natal.

Cyril Ramaphosa vs Jacob Zuma: The gloves are off

It now seems as if Cyril is no longer bothered about mincing his words when it comes to Msholozi. At the end of last year, we saw the current leader take a very subtle dig at his predecessor for “almost a decade of stealing” – something he’s been keen to re-iterate this week:

“We are going to jail those found guilty of corruption and strengthen government processes. We are going to make sure there is improved service delivery, too.

The past nine years, we started losing our way. And the last nine years, we lost our way, corruption started setting in. After nine years of drifts, we got another chance to put our country on a much better footing.

Cyril Ramaphosa

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out exactly what those nine years refer to. Jacob Zuma took office in 2009, already facing the heat from a corruption trial relating to an illicit arms deal. His first term was characterised by suspicions over his tax payments and funding for Nkandla.

His second term was a four-year shit-storm of state capture allegations, “pay back the money” and an alarming slide in popularity. After weeks of negotiations, Zuma eventually agreed to resign in February 2018.

How Zuma has “undermined” Ramaphosa

The former president has also been accused of trying to “plan a coup” against Ramaphosa. Clandestine meetings between the 76-year-old and Ace Magashule set tongues wagging, but the pair denied any wrongdoing. Msholozi has also hinted that Cyril knows much more about state capture than he actually lets on.

However, the ill-feeling between the pair seems to be peaking at the beginning of an election campaign. Zuma remains highly-influential within the ANC, and could even be selected to run as an MP this month. As we found out this weekend, Ramaphosa is keen to nip any of this momentum in the bud.

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