ANC's Mr Fixit lured by business career
Monday 15 April 1996
In few weeks, however, Mr Ramaphosa, 43, will be leaving politics for business, a move greeted with both enthusiasm and dismay. Many considered him a main contender for Nelson Mandela's mantle when he leaves office in 1999; Mr Ramaphosa's rival, Deputy President Thabo Mbeki, is now undisputed crown prince of the ANC and almost certainly South Africa's next president.
Officially, Mr Ramaphosa's decision to leave parliament next month for a position in New Africa Investment Limited (Nail) - one of the few black conglomerates listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange - is being touted as move to strengthen black business.
Pundits are also saying it could lead to "the biggest advance in black empowerment in South African history". Nail is trying to wrest from Anglo American Corporation a 48-per-cent stake in the Johnnic company, which has majority shares in a firm which owns South Africa's biggest weekend paper, the Sunday Times, plus Business Day and the weekly Financial Mail. A successful bid would for the first time place some of the most important media interests in black hands.
What Nail needed was a tough negotiator, a job well suited to Mr Ramaphosa, who in 1993 spearheaded the ANC's negotiations with the last white-minority government.
Asked about his latest move, he said: "It used to be taboo to even talk about people on the left ... getting into business. But the realities we are now dealing with have brought a completely new perspective. It dictates that we should play a key role in the economy - have real clout."
But there may be reasons other than a desire to influence the business scene which led Mr Ramaphosa to leave politics. ANC sources say Mr Mbeki outmanoeuvred him to remain Mr Mandela's favourite to succeed him.
Sources close to Mr Ramaphosa have indicated that by leaving the government now, he may be planning for the longer term: seeking to expand his base of support, to stage a political comeback for 2004.
The Microsoft mogul told fans a few home truths during his Reddit AMA
- 1 Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Baldness could soon be treated using stem cells, scientists hope
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
Boris Johnson claims porn-obsessed Islamic jihadists are 'literally w*****s'
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Teenager brandishing fake gun taken down by police after demanding airtime on Netherlands' NOS TV station
Ball pool for adults opens in London
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...
£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 3 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Lead Web Develo...
£21000 - £40000 per annum + Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: Key Stage 2 tea...