In the face of intensified and renewed race by prominent aspirants within the ANC for the number one job in the country:
If Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba and other powerful leaders in the ANC are to be believed, then he is destined for much greater things than his current position.
In 2001 when Gigaba was serving a third term as ANC Youth League president, he said his ambition in life was to be ANC president. It is no secret that Gigaba harbours presidential ambitions, however, some in the ANC want the same position. Already the campaigns for Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and former African Union chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma are in full swing.
In 2001 when Gigaba was serving a third term as ANC Youth League president, he said his ambition in life was to be ANC president.
When he was elected ANCYL president in 1996, he got closer to then president Thabo Mbeki and deputy president Jacob Zuma.
Before the fallout between Mbeki and Zuma, Gigaba, while president of the ANCYL, used to meet them weekly but separately.
Mbeki was seen to be grooming Gigaba to be president one day. He recommended books for him to read. He also advised him to study economics, which he did. Zuma has always been giving him fatherly advice.
But here is the dilemma: Zuma might be the last ANC president to be head of state if the 2016 local government elections results are anything to go by. The local government election results have given a clear indication that the fate of any ANC leader to be president of the state lies with the voters.
Already opposition parties are working hard to discredit the ANC, rightly so while the factional battles in the ANC are not helping the situation.
Every other day there is negative information about the ANC, particularly Zuma.
The ANC is in real danger of losing power in 2019. Although there is also talk at different ANC informal meetings that there is a need for a younger leader to take over in December.
While Gigaba’s name is being bandied about, he also must decide if he wants to lead the party.
His ties with Zuma may cut his ambition short. Moreover, he has to come clean about his relationship with the Gupta family.
He must explain to the nation and the captains of world industry whether he takes orders from them. It is said he is a frequent visitor at their home.
One of his advisers, Thamsanqa Msomi, is from the Denel board. That is the same board that allowed Denel to enter into a relationship with a Gupta front company in which Duduzane Zuma, the president’s son, is a key player.
Gigaba must come clean. He must explain the nature and frequency of calls he has allegedly taken from the Guptas as well as the number of visits he has allegedly made to their home.
Gigaba, does any of your three advisers have any links with the Guptas?