JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s ruling party chose on Monday the country’s vice president, Cyril Ramaphosa, as its new leader.
In a secret vote, Ramaphosa topped former African Union head Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma by a vote of 2,440 to 2,261 and will be the new leader of the African National Congress (ANC).
Ramaphosa’s victory comes after a long voting process that started at midnight and continued until Monday morning at the ANC’s 54th annual conference, which started in Johannesburg on Dec. 16.
The ruling party also chose David Mabuza as its new vice president and Ace Magashule as new secretary-general.
Jacob Zuma’s second and last presidential term ends in 2019 since South African presidents are limited to two five-year terms.
The ANC, the party of Nelson Mandela, has won every election in South Africa since democracy was established in 1994.
As a result, the ANC’s new leader is the favorite for the 2019 presidential elections.