It is not clear whether his recent posturing is borne out of the public rejection of his presidential ambition by President Jacob Zuma.

Ramaphosa came out guns blazing on Sunday against state capture at a cadres’ assembly in the Northern Cape.

As the race for the leadership of the African National Congress hots up and amid allegations about his alleged infidelity‚ Ramaphosa reminded those at the assembly in Kimberley that South Africa had been captured.

“Whether you talk about Eskom‚ whether you talk about Prasa‚ whether you talk about Transnet‚ whether you talk about the SABC‚ whether you talk about SAA. All our state-owned enterprises have been captured and we are saying we want to see an end to state capture‚” Ramaphosa said.

“And the money that has been stolen‚ we want it back‚” he said.

“We say this‚ because we want our state-owned enterprises to serve the interest of our people … to serve the economy of our country properly‚” Ramaphosa said in a clip broadcast.

Ramaphosa said‚ rather than addressing economic growth and equality in South Africa‚ the ANC had become wracked by infighting and divisions.

“We are facing our own internal problems and we continue to make a number of mistakes that make our economy difficult to grow‚” he said.

He reminded cadres at the assembly that the oldest liberation movement on the continent was formed to repair South Africa and keep it on the right track.

“We all have a duty‚ comrades‚ to build‚ to strengthen and to defend the unity of our organisation as well as our alliance‚” he said.

“Whether we are in elected positions or not‚ that is the duty that we have and the overriding concern‚ comrades‚ of the ANC‚ at this point in time‚ the number one task that the ANC has is to reduce poverty‚ to reduce unemployment and inequality‚” Ramaphosa said.