Gwede Mantashe: The hard man of ANC politics

The first in a two part series by Isaac Mogotsi on the ANC secretary general

"Our lives are a battlefield on which is fought a continuous war between [...] those who aim to open our eyes, to make us see the light and look to tomorrow [...] And those who wish to lull us into closing our eyes."

Ngugi wa Thiong'o, the celebrated Kenyan author.


Gwede Mantashe, the newly re-elected ANC secretary general (ANC SG) is a fascinating and colourful ANC politician on a roll. At the moment it is hard to tell whether he is unstoppable or not, but he is certainly compelling, even if he is not yet a commanding historical ANC figure. He definitely has his mojo about him and a strong wind-tail behind his political flight upward.

Some people think that the strategic calculation of the triumphant and hegemonic Zuma faction, which, following Mangaung, has established an iron grip over the ANC, is to install Mantashe as ANC Deputy President in 2017. So he is definitely a man of huge political substance who cannot be underestimated. He is a man to watch.

Many in the ANC see him as a tough, no-nonsense disciplinarian, a tough task-master and a very knowledgeable, if also slightly doctrinaire, SACP/ANC ideologue. Others in the ANC see him as a reckless but powerful ANC hammer on the loose, prowling ANC branches and regions for any rebellious nail to hit hard on its head and force it into a narrow dogmatic compliance.

They view him as an intimidating ANC iron-fist raised up in the air and in the ready to strike mercilessly. An iron-fist which, moreover, refuses to be cloaked in a velvet glove. He clearly enjoys wielding unadorned and naked political power. He is the ANC's Damocles'' Sword, unhesitant to chop off the hands of those he perceives to be evil "counter-revolutionary forces" threatening, from within or outside, the core essence and the very vitality of the ANC and its national democratic revolution (NDR).

To those within the ANC who have suffered his wrath, he is like a an unbending and tenacious bulldog - pugnacious, rough, combative and bloody minded. His razor-sharp tongue, matching his equally razor-sharp mind, is both venerated and reviled.

Gwede Mantashe is universally excoriated by the more frivolous ANC and SA's fashion "nazi" police for his lack of haute couture dress sense, for his shabby look with his shirts which are often made to burst lose (by his beer belly) from the grip of the belt around his waist, for his chaotic and bushy beard, for the constant soft drizzle that is the saliva squirting from his poutish mouth as he makes a strong point, and for his grating, anti-climactic voice.

Yet he is respected by many among the SA public and ANC members for turning the wielding of democratic and competitive ANC governing power into our most powerful post-1994 political fashion statement. His power manifesto seems to be "if you won power, don't shy from using it to good, even if crushing, effect."

In a recent article, News24 and City Press writing about the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) founder and social activist, Zackie Achmat's damning views of Mantashe, noted the following:

"Achmat also criticized the ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe, saying that while ANC members were afraid of him, there was nobody outside the ANC who had any respect for him." (28 November 2012).

That Mantashe is universally feared in the ANC is not true, as demonstrated by the fact that Zackie Achmat himself penned his criticism of Mantashe as an ANC member, without dire consequences to himself.

The Mangaung conference clearly demonstrated that the ANC delegates hold Gwede Mantashe in very high esteem. This is attested to by both the pro-Mantashe songs and the fact that he received the highest number of votes of any elected ANC official. The ANC leadership and membership appreciates that Mantashe has been very pivotal in attempts to stabilise and renew the ANC in the post-Polokwane era. In fact, as far back as 21 March 2010, ANC President Jacob Zuma spoke glowingly about Gwede Mantashe thus:

"Let me emphasise that the utterances that are made about (Mantashe) do not only impact on the person of the secretary general but on the dignity and integrity of the ANC. An attack on (Mantashe) hits at the belly of the ANC." (Sunday Independent SA). [Two years earlier, Mantashe had defended Zuma from attacks by saying; "When there is that concerted attack on him, it is a concerted attack on the head of the ANC. Everybody says it is an attack on him. We will know it is an attack on the ANC." (Mail & Guardian, 04 July 2008)].

In many respects, Mantashe represents a new breed of ANC's powerful post-Mandela leaders who attained political authority whilst the ANC was a governing party. This new breed of leaders is so different from the more politically shy and coquettish ANC leaders of the early 1990s.

Clearly Mantashe revels in the accumulation and exercise of political power, almost in kind of in-your-face way. More importantly he adores the mechanics of exercising power and the reverse power engineering afforded to intelligent politicians at the peak of their power and influence. Even more, he does not seem to allow the complexities and nuances of power, or power's 'fifty shades of gray', to cloud his vision of a necessary and clear course of political action, and requisite mass mobilization for attainment of such a purpose.

Nor does he allow political philosophical discourse to lull him into indecision, unnecessary procrastination and a false sense of achievement. This is because Mantashe appears to detest dangerous and false political consciousness born of fruitless fixation with impractical ideas. He once said, in a shocking admission of his innate political conservatism, that:

"The ANC as a governing party cannot pretend we are a resistance movement in the running of the country and the economy...we must run the economy successfully." (Mail & Guardian. 01 September 2010).

Mantashe very much embodies Hegel's thundering words that:

"Action is the clearest revelation of the individual, his temperament, as well as his aims - what a man is at bottom and in his inmost being comes into actuality only by his action." (Aesthetics, Volume 1, page 219). He is thus apparently not satisfied with the French philosopher's Descartes' dictum that "I think, therefore I am."

He thinks in order to act, and acts whilst thinking, in order to think more. He would probably say, contradicting Descartes, that "I think and act, therefore I am ANC secretary general."

Mantashe talks tough and acts even tougher. But he thinks even harder. He wades into all manner of disputes and controversies, unafraid, like an over-rated, over-confident but inexperienced professional wrestler, thus projecting his SG office as both the shield and the spear, the anvil and the hammer, of the Zuma ANC. He is the guardian guarding the ANC guardians and its membership. That he did this and still won a second term in Mangaung last year, is proof that he is an ANC's transformational political figure, and the hard man of ANC politics.

Cyril Ramaphosa, the newly elected ANC deputy president and now Mantashe's senior, could not win a second term as ANC SG after amassing powerful political foes in the ANC. Kgalema Motlanthe, the former ANC deputy president and Mantashe's immediate predecessor as secretary general, won a second term as ANC SG by playing his cards too close to his chest and keeping his counsel to himself for the most part. The long-serving, unassuming and self-effacing exiled ANC secretary general, Alfred Nzo, lasted long in that position because he was so un-threatening, not power-hungry, he was media shy and not self-promotional.

Not so Mantashe. He does not equivocate. He does not fudge issues. He goes straight to the point - and straight to the heart of a dispute or a political phenomenon and commotion, often in the most jarring manner. He uses the straightforward and forthright, and often redolent, language of a school principal in a tough SA black township neighborhood, not averse to smack the head of a lone duck that strays away from his enforced straight line of ideological march. He reminds one of Margaret Thatcher's famous drop-dead verbal indiscretion that she "got no time for diplomats." Mantashe is not the greatest adherent of diplomatic prudery.

But he is as focused as hell. My favorite Zapiro carton of Mantashe is when he faced off with Julius Malema in a disciplinary session between the two. In front of the seated Mantashe is the over-confident Malema, and behind him, the now so typical ANC bunfights around leadership succession between Jacob Zuma and Kgalema Motlanthe. Behind Zuma and Motlanthe are ANC political hyenas battling each other for tenders and to loot state resources. But Gwede remained focused on the challenge at hand - disciplining Malema. (Sunday Times SA, 21 August 2011). It is a focus and an approach that rebounded to his great political benefit in Mangaung last December

In an exclusive Business Day interview with Sam Mkokeli, Mantashe was asked as to whether he is "abrasive", 'confrontational" or whether he shies away "from a fight". His answer was that he is "not abrasive and confrontational but upright and direct", and that he does not "shy away from telling things as I see them."

At the very least, Mantashe can be said to be very comfortable being the centre of media attention. He is arguably the first major SA politician since Pik Botha, the long-serving apartheid foreign minister, (and certainly the first post-1994 black politician), who courts media attention with great finesse, and yet still be able to retain his political gravitas.

He is not viewed by anybody as a media creation. And he seems so effective and natural under the media spotlight. In this sense, Mantashe is quite a refreshing political revelation indeed. Even when he deals with the media, he remains very robust, focused, "upright and direct" and does not "shy from telling things" the way he sees them. But there has been a whiff of suspicion that he does not shy away also from trying to bully and instruct the media to adopt a particular pro-ANC slant or to toe the party line. In probably an unguarded moment of SA journalistic candor, the Mail & Guardian of 11 July 2008 carried an article entitled "ANC shrugs off Mantashe's stance on judiciary", in which the paper wrote the following about its former editor, and current editor of City Press (SA), Ferial Haffajee:

"She said Mantashe, who usually calls her when he not (sic) happy with a story in the paper, has not phoned her to complain about the story". The paper went on to re-emphasise its point, stating: "He has not complained nor requested an apology."

Fareed Zakaria, now the host of CNN's Global Public Square (GPS), wrote in his March/April 1994 Foreign Affairs article "Conversation with Lee Kuan Yew", that the former leader of Singapore was "...speaking his mind with impolitic frankness." This expression of Zakaria just about sums up Mantashe's approach to ANC and SA politics - yes, "impolitic frankness." In the context of the evolution of the governing ANC's leadership's philosophy and praxis, this is salutary and unconventional.

No one can ever accuse Mantashe of speaking in a forked tongue or of sending mixed signals.

One of the best examples of Mantashe being "upright and direct" and "telling things as I see them" related to the COSATU-organised Civil Society Conference which excluded the ANC. A fuming Mantashe did not mince words when flailing into COSATU, the ANC's Tripartite Alliance partner. Mantashe characterised the conference as a first step "to setting Zimbabwe-style MDC". He said forming a civil society movement outside the Tripartite Alliance could be "interprteted as the initiation of regime change."

Gwede Mantashe has, however, been accused of inconsistencies, partisanship and open political favouratism, as when he came down hard on some ANC provinces and leagues for prematurely opening the leadership succession debate before October last year, whilst turning a blind eye, if not twitching an encouraging wink, to pro-Zuma KZN and Mpumalanga ANC provinces, which were openly canvassing for Zuma's second term long before October last year.

He is considered rude, unnecessarily argumentative, combative and uncouth by some in the ANC and outside it. A Johnny-come-late-to-Joburg type who throws his weight around, who likes to stand in ceremony over nothing of particular political value.

In his fine and historic eulogy for Che Guevara, in front of over a million Cubans in 1964, five years after the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro paid a glowing tribute to his revolutionary and ideological soul-mate, and the co-founder of the Cuban Revolution. But Castro had the presence of the mind to rise above the overwhelming emotions of the moment to point out to what he described as Che's cardinal weakness, which was that Che was "excessively combative."

Gwede Mantashe, a fine ANC leader, too comes across often as "excessively combative", although he possesses many admirable leadership qualities. It is a weakness that Mantashe may choose to ponder over, as it makes him appear as overly defensive and allergic to criticism and self-criticism. It is his Achilles' heel, as it was Che'd.

As a result of this weakness, it cannot be said of Mantashe what Frederick Engels was able to say, without fear of contradiction, about his co-Communist revolutionary, lifelong friend and ideological soul-mate, Karl Marx. In Engels' eulogy for Marx at London Highpark Cemetery on 22 March 1883, he said the foloowing:

"I make bold to say that though he may have many opponents, he had hardly one personal enemy."

Many in the ANC, in turn, can legitimately make bold to say that though Gwede Mantashe has many opponents, he has, unfortunately, even many more political enemies within the ANC and outside of it.

As early as late 2009 and early 2010, many in the ANCYL were wont to burst out in anti-Mantashe songs. He often had a torrid time trying to address the ANCYL meeting or national general council (NGC).

Unfortunately for Gwede Mantashe, he co-leads the ANC at a particularly difficult and challenging period for the distinguished organisation, morally and ethically speaking.

It is a period which, in the words of Hannah Arendt, the German-Jewish political philosopher (and the author of "On Totalitarianism"), "...has rendered meaningless most of our moral and political categories...and has exploded the established categories of political thought and the accepted standards of moral judgment..Our inherited concepts and criteria have been dissolved under the impact of modern political events."

In our case, this is the post-Polokwane period of the ANC. Gwede Mantashe is the usher, participant, and one of the chief beneficiaries and cheerleaders of this sorry ANC period..

To appreciate the relevance of Hannah Arendt's words for our current difficult and embittered post-Polokwane political climate, suffice to take two examples involving Mantashe himself. Firstly, in 2010 Mantashe said the following about ANC slates:

"The fact that we are a product of the slates does not make it right." (Mail& Guardian, 01 September 2010).

Yet in December last year Mantashe was, on a voluntary and quite eager basis, a part of the victorious pro-Zuma Mangaung ANC slate. He got involved in the ANC slate practice whilst he well understood that it was impermissible and wrong to do so, because it is not right. But he found the temptation of political power irresistible.

In this instance, Mantashe lacked the courage of his own publicly stated political conviction on ANC slates. He failed himself and failed us for a temporal political gain of no lasting or redeeming value. Here Mantashe played footloose with his own stated and correct belief on ANC slates. Whether this will result in any short-term or long-term damage to the ANC or Mantashe's own political power calculus, at this stage is hard to tell.

Secondly, during ANC President Jacob Zuma's centenary Nelson Mandela Memorial Lecture in Polokwane on 10 July last year, as reported by The Times (SA) on 11 July 2012, page 4 thus:

"ANC secretary-general, Gwede Mantashe, who described Zuma as an 'inteLlectual', told the audience that for the duration of the lecture, they must address the president as 'professor.'

This Mantashe requested from the audience without any hint of irony or embarrassment or humor at saying so. Surely the fact that Zuma was delivering the twelve ANC centenary lectures last year did not make him a "professor", in spite of Mantashe's own voluntaristic political pronouncement at the important ANC event. In the same way a traditional healer dispensing herbal medicine does not become a "Doctor (Dr)". Nor does a witch navigating a broom at high altitude at night become a "pilot."

As a matter of an important fact, the former ANC deputy president, Kgalema Motlanthe, explicitly counselled against recklessness by ANC leaders in their ill-considered use of words, a counsel Mantashe should have taken to heart before asking his Polokwane audience to call Zuma "professor.".

Kgalema Motlanthe said that:

"But of course trained minds know what concepts must convey, what they are meant to convey. So we can't be reckless with words...And so part of the responsibility of leadership is to ensure that the statements that we issue convey what we want to convey and not just words and that is why the stalwarts of the Communist Party and the ANC...always took the trouble to ensure that the words that they put together convey the message which they want to convey. And I am saying this because today it is very easy to throw in all these words and get away with it."

In both these instances involving Mantashe there is deliberate and intentional concept displacement and cognitive dissonance and dislocation, as well as a purposive dissolution of "our inherited concepts and criteria for judgment", thus consequently "rendering meaningless... our moral and political categories." (Hannah Arendt)

Or as Kgalema Motlanthe put it, " it is very easy to throw in all these words and get away with it." As if words carry no practical consequences.

Mantashe as an intellectual

A spectre is haunting the post-Mangaung 'Zumantashe' ANC leadership collective. It is the spectre that is hanging like a dark cloud over the newly elected Top Six, the NEC and the NWC of the past-Mangaung ANC. It is the spectre of William Mervin Gumede's prediction that if re-elected in Mangaung, Jacob Zuma could be ousted from power. (As reported by News24 and City Press' Carien du Plessis on 06 August 2012)

Anticipating and averting the future possibility of Zuma's recall from office, like it happened to former ANC and SA president Thabo Mbeki, is the over-riding priority and morbid obsession of the newly elected ANC Top Six, NWC and NEC, which are all fanatically loyal to Zuma. But it will also be a challenge that will test Mantashe's intellect to the very limit.

It is clear from Sam Mkokeli's post-Mangaung interview with Mantashe that the latter desires to be acknowledged as a major, heavy-weight ANC intellectual, in the mould of former ANC secretaries general Rev James Calata and Duma Nokwe, both of whom were two of the finest ever ANC intellects.

Naturally Mantashe's eagerness to compare himself to Rev James Calata and Duma Nokwe, or at least to view them as his role-models in his powerful position as the current ANC secretary general begs the inevitable question: Is Mantashe a major, heavy-weight ANC intellectual? Was Mantashe right at the ANC centenary Nelson Mandela Memorial Lecture to describe ANC President Jacob Zuma as an ‘intellectual'? What makes for an ANC or any intellectual for that matter, within a specific political context and formation?

It is vital to engage with these important and relevant questions, bearing in mind what the great economist, John Maynard Keynes, stated in the past that:

"The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood." (The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money").

[Interestingly, the great British philosopher, Bertrand Russell, the author of the magisterial 'The History of Western Philosophy', had a more disarming and self-deprecating assessment of the importance of intellectuals. Russell wrote that "intellectuals appear to have had more influence in former periods than our own. This influence today has been exaggerated. Intellectuals may influence people's talk more than their actions." (From 'The Rise of the Intellectual in the Modern World', American Journal of Sociology, 1939, University of Chicago Press)]

The political philosophical impact of Mantashe's 'ideas' on the ANC in particular, and on SA society in general, as the exemplar of and bullhorn through which ANC policies are articulated, defended or justified, especially the ANC's decisions as a governing party, "are more powerful than is commonly understood", and this is so "both when they are right and when they are wrong.". (John Maynard Keynes). And because of such an impact of Mantashe's ideas on the governing ANC and SA society, they richly deserve our closer scrutiny.

Admittedly, our scrutiny of Mantashe ideas is not at all assisted by his peculiar and rather un-progressive understanding of the public role of ANC intellectuals at the current political moment.

Addressing an ANC NEC meeting last November that took stock of the ANC performance in the last five years, as part of preparations for the Mangaung conference in December, The Times SA quoted Mantashe as "cautioning the party's intellectual members against harming the party when commenting about its performance...Mantashe...urged those who are unhappy with the party not to air their views in public." (The Times SA, 19 November 2012)

The paper further quoted Mantashe as saying to the ANC NEC:

"It is more harmful when intellectuals of the movement, who are the product of the investment of the ANC, criticize the movement as outsiders. They must [realise] that there is more value derived from intellectual engagement from within the structures of the ANC than [from] contesting each other in public." (Ibid).

As to why Mantashe thinks that the general SA public and the broader 12 million-strong ANC voter base, existing outside 'the ANC structures' should not gain from, or be exposed to, the constructive public intellectual contestation among ANC intellectuals regarding the ANC's public performance as our country's democratically-elected governing party, he does not explain.

In fact, Mantashe's notion around his preferred public conduct of ANC intellectuals appears to support Max Weber's political concept of a "status group", which belongs to neither of Karl Marx's antagonistic classes of the bourgeoisie and proletariat, but which commands influence over society as a result of the 'social honour' and 'prestige' it enjoys as society's thought leader.

As Weber would say about the "status group", its influence and status do not stem from its relationship to relations of production, but from the status accorded to it by society. In this Weberian scheme of things, "very frequently the striving for power is also conditioned by the social 'honour' it entails", and that "power, including economic power, may be valued for its own sake."

Mantashe's appeal to ANC intellectuals is founded also on this aspect of the attractiveness of ruling power as an efficient organiser of the 'status group', which co-opts especially critical intellectuals standing outside and critical of ruling power elites. In exchange for their ensuing co-option and proximity to the ears of the governing power elites, such 'status group' intellectuals trade in their public outspokenness, their courage to speak truth to power. They thus agree to be accessorised as the most legitimizing adornment of public power's throne. How such an intellectual state of affairs enriches public intellectual discourse is hard to fathom.

If truth be told, Mantashe's understanding of the duty and responsibility of ANC intellectuals is a lot less than the Gramscian concept of "an organic intellectual", and much more closer to the power elitist notion of society's esoteric class of 'great special thinkers', or 'ivory tower dwellers' or 'power-aligned Soviet intellectuals' like the Soviet author, Maxim Gorky.

It is a group of intellectuals standing above and divorced from ongoing daily engagement with the public in which they live, except within the structures and in line with the strictures set down by the governing public power.

It is a notion of intellectuals as a societal cream captured by the governing power purely for its propaganda and ideological reasons. It is a notion very much popularised by Thomas Carlyle's 'super-heroes', who were individuals that made and altered the course of history, operating under a benevolent guidance of a supreme ruler, however the supreme ruler is constituted. Mantashe's understanding of role and place of ANC intellectual is anti-Socratic and anti-Gramscian.

It runs against Socrates and Socratic questioning argumentation through public lectures in public squares, especially Socrates refusal to be co-opted into ancient Athen's ruling power elites. It runs counter to Antonio Gramsci's clarion call that "the mode of being of the new intellectual can no longer consist in eloquence, which is an exterior and momentary mover of feeling and passions, but participation in protracted life as constructor, organiser, permanent persuader, and not just a simple orator."

In the context of current democratic space in South Africa, Gramsci's "protracted life" includes the impact, influence, benefit, harm, result and unintended consequences of the governing ANC's resolutions and decisions on our society and body politic, with which ANC intellectuals should publicly interact, and not behind closed doors only, for the benefit of the ANC itself and the broader SA society in general.

In and of itself Mantashe's statement on ANC intellectuals closing ranks around the ruling party is very understandable, and maybe even politically necessary in a young democracy, although it may not make long-term intellectual sense, as attested by the implosion of the docile and dutiful Soviet intellectuals apparently beholden to the Soviet Communist Party.

But when read in close conjunction with the threatening statement of Mantashe's fellow SACP/ANC leader and intellectual, Blade Nzimande's questionable proposition in early 2012 that there exists in SA an "ideological third force", then Mantashe's call to ANC intellectuals may be perceived as akin to the biblical call to ancient Jews to paint their doors with blood so as to be spared the visiting wrath of God. In this case the ruling ANC's wrath against "the ideological third force." (See Mondli Makhanya's SA Sunday Times article of 22 April 2012 entitled "When Blade, the intellectual, boxes with third force ghosts").

These two statements of Mantashe and Nzimande regarding 'ANC intellectuals', on the one hand, and on an 'ideological third force', on the other hand, reminds one of what the former Soviet author, poet and dissident, Boris Pasternak, once wrote about those in power in pre-perestroika Soviet Union, Pasternak wrote: "As for the men in power, they are so anxious to establish the myth of infallibility that they do their utmost to ignore truth."

Still, Mantashe is correct to describe himself and Jacob Zuma as 'ANC intellectuals', something which Antonio Gramsci, the Italian organic intellectual, would agree with. Gramsci, in his "Intellectuals and Hegemony", stated that "...intellectual activity exists in everyone at a certain stage of development", and [that] "that all members of a political party should be regarded as intellectuals is an affirmation that can easily lend itself to mockery and caricature. But if one thinks about it, nothing could be more exact."

Correctly so, in this Gramscian sense all members of the ANC and all our existing political organisations are 'intellectuals', unless they are merely 'voting fodder' or 'voting cattle' belonging to 'a member of a member of a political organisation.'

Perhaps the best articulation and contextualisation of the debate in SA around intellectuals and their role and place in our democratic society was penned by Bishop Clyde N Ramalaine, which he wrote on 17 August 2011, in an article entitled "Who are the guardians and who guards them?", but which appeared in Professor Pierre de Vos blog 'Constitutionally Speaking', under the title "On the objectivity of analysts."

Although Ramalaine intended his piece as a fierce and ruthless critique of what he perceived as anti-ANC and anti-ANC-led government and anti-majoritarian liberal intellectuals, the irony is that the pertinent arguments and issues he raises apply with equal force with regard to Mantashe's understanding of the role and place of ANC and public intellectuals in general.

Bishop Ramalaine wrote, quite cogently, that:

"...often the public intellectuals claim their research proves a subject or not. Yet we as the public do not know the research methodology applied, the degree of variable influence, the structure of such research and the assumptions made for such research and of course the actual empirical evidence by which such findings concludes. In the absence of the above being generously shared with the public by public intellectuals, we are force-fed a diet of opinion informed by armchair dictate...Analysts appear to have an unwritten rule, unspoken code of ethic...such ethic appears to embrace a written rule of never oppose each other...One cannot but see a proverbial herd mentality."

I say: "well said Bishop Clyde N Ramalaine."

But Mr ANC Secretary General Mantashe, how will ANC intellectuals engaging the ANC, and each other, only within the ANC structures, avoid the perception by the public of "a proverbial herd mentality", and another perception of "an unwritten, unspoken code of embrace a written rule of never oppose each other..."? Or do you intend the SA public to be "force-fed a diet of opinion informed by armchair dictate" of ANC intellectuals?

I submit to you, Mr SG, that such an outcome will do no good to, and will be beneath, the great and outstanding intellectual traditions of the ANC in the last 101 years.

This is the first in a two part series of articles on the ANC Secretary General.

Isaac Mpho Mogotsi Executive Director, Centre of Economic Diplomacy in Africa (CEDIA).

He can also be followed on Twitter @rabokala1

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