54th National Conference of the African National Congress

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54th National Conference of the African National Congress
← 2012 December 16–20, 2017 (2017-12-16 – 2017-12-20) 2022 →
  Cyril Ramaphosa (42783408010).jpg Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma 2014.png
Candidate Cyril Ramaphosa Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Popular vote 2,440 2,261
Percentage 51.90% 48.10%

President before election

Jacob Zuma

Elected President

Cyril Ramaphosa

The 54th National Conference of the African National Congress (ANC) took place from 16 to 20 December 2017 in the Expo Centre Johannesburg at Nasrec, Gauteng, as the elective conference to elect the members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) as well as other major party officials.

On 18 December 2017, Cyril Ramaphosa, the incumbent Deputy President of the ANC since 2012 and Deputy President of South Africa since 2014, was elected as President of the ANC, narrowly defeating Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. Following Jacob Zuma's resignation in February 2018, Ramaphosa was elected unopposed as President of South Africa by the National Assembly on 15 February 2018.[1] Ramaphosa took his oath of office in the presidential guesthouse, Tuynhuys, by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.[2][3][4]

As President of the ANC, Ramaphosa was the party's candidate for President of South Africa in the 2019 South African general election. The ANC won the election with 57.50% of the vote.

Events leading up to the conference[edit]

Jacob Zuma was re-elected to a second five-year term as President of South Africa in 2014 and would be ineligible to stand for re-election in the national elections in 2019. Following a cabinet reshuffle in March 2017 and the country's subsequent downgrade by international investment firms, hundreds of thousands of South African's marched across the country demanding President Zuma's resignation. Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa announced his own presidential campaign on 22 April 2017 alongside former Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the ex-wife of Jacob Zuma appeared at several ANC Women's League events and was expected to announce her candidacy in the coming months in the run up to the 2017 ANC elective conference. Ramaphosa was believed to be aligned to the anti-Zuma faction in the ANC, while Dlamini-Zuma was expected to be endorsed by most of the pro-Zuma members of the ANC. The ANC Women's League announced its endorsement of Dlamini-Zuma while COSATU announced that it would support Ramaphosa.[5] Incumbent ANC President Jacob Zuma had been accused of State capture, allowing the Gupta family access to the Presidency, cabinet and state resources while denying the numerous allegations despite several independent agencies and media experts believing the allegations to have some substance to them.[6]

On August 8, 2017, President Zuma narrowly survived a motion of no confidence against him with 198 Members of Parliament voting for Zuma to stay and 177 voting for him to go, which resulted in a purge of ANC MPs who supported the ballot against Zuma,[7] including Makhosi Khoza.

Ramaphosa called for a judicial inquiry into state capture while Dlamini-Zuma based her campaign around economic transformation.[8]

In September 2017, it was announced that former Commissioner of the African Union and Jacob Zuma's ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma would return as a member of Parliament in order to broaden her appeal to ANC voters in order to win the Presidential nomination.

On 13 September 2017, it was announced that one of Zuma and Dlamini-Zuma's largest support bases, the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, would have its annual conference result annulled. The short ruling came in what has been called the "ANC rebels case"‚ lodged by a faction supporting ousted chairman - and KZN Premier - Senzo Mchunu‚ who lost to Zikalala in a bitter and bruising internal battle. The application was led by Vryheid councillor Lawrence Dube and four other ANC members representing 43 branches. They went to court in July 2016 to ask for a rerun‚ citing various irregularities and intimidation.[9]

New leadership elected[edit]

The ANC elective conference began on 16 December 2017. On the second day of the conference, delegates nominated candidates for the officials ("Top Six" leadership positions (President, Deputy President, Chairperson, Secretary General, Deputy Secretary General and Treasurer)) as follows,[10] with voting running through the night on 17 to 18 December, and results announced on the evening of Monday 18 December (victorious candidates in bold):

Position Candidate Votes
President Cyril Ramaphosa 2440
Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma 2261
Deputy President David Mabuza 2538
Lindiwe Sisulu 2159
National Chairperson Gwede Mantashe 2418
Nathi Mthethwa 2269
Secretary General Ace Magashule 2360
Senzo Mchunu 2336
Deputy Secretary General Jessie Duarte 2474
Zingiswa Losi 2213
Treasurer General Paul Mashatile 2517
Maite Nkoana-Mashabane 2178

The rest of the National Executive Committee were elected and announced toward the end of the conference. There are 80 additional members that were elected.[11]


  1. ^ "Cyril Ramaphosa has been elected president of South Africa". Retrieved 2018-06-08.
  2. ^ "WATCH: President Ramaphosa takes oath of office". www.enca.com. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  3. ^ "The oath is sealed: Ramaphosa is officially President". Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  4. ^ "South Africa's Cyril Ramaphosa takes oath of office". Gulf News. 15 February 2018. Retrieved 2019-10-06.
  5. ^ "These could be the next leaders of the ANC". Businesstech.co.za. 2017-01-13. Retrieved 2017-06-06.
  6. ^ http://www.biznews.com/interviews/2017/09/06/paul-osullivan-guptaleaks-emails-authentic-arrests-christmas/
  7. ^ Theletsane, Winnie. "BREAKING NEWS: Zuma survives no confidence vote". Retrieved 2017-11-09.
  8. ^ Derrick Spies (2017-04-23). "Ramaphosa 'launches' campaign with attack on Zuma, Guptas". News24. Retrieved 2017-06-06.
  9. ^ https://www.timeslive.co.za/politics/2017-09-12-high-court-declares-2015-kzn-anc-conference-unlawful/
  10. ^ "Final list of candidates for top six ANC positions announced". Times Live. 17 December 2017. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
  11. ^ "The National Executive Committee | African National Congress". www.anc.org.za. Archived from the original on 2018-04-23. Retrieved 2018-01-10.

External links[edit]