18th December, 2017
South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) has selected Cyril Ramaphosa to succeed President Jacob Zuma as the party’s leader.
The country’s deputy president defeated former cabinet minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Mr Zuma’s ex-wife, after a marathon voting process.
Mr Ramaphosa is in a strong position to become president in 2019 polls.
The leadership battle caused fierce political infighting, raising fears the party might split before the election.
Mr Ramaphosa defeated Ms Dlamini-Zuma by 2,440 votes to 2,261, an ANC spokesperson announced.
The result triggered celebrations among party delegates in Johannesburg and also on the streets of the city.
Media reports said earlier that the announcement had been delayed, with Ms Dlamini-Zuma’s camp demanding a recount.
The voting process started on Sunday.
According to BBC, Mr Ramaphosa, 65, has spoken out strongly against state corruption and has the backing of the business community.
Ms Dlamini-Zuma, 68, had been critical of the enduring power of white-owned businesses and had pledged to tackle what she said was continued racial inequality.