Here is a list of promising politicians that may take over power from President Jacob Zuma come 2019 General Election in South Africa.

Please note that the numbering here does not place the candidates in ascendancy or descendancy order. The numbering is not serving as a ranking; or who is on top.


1. Cyril Ramaphosa.

Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa  is a South African politician, businessman, activist, and trade union leader who has served as the Deputy President under President Jacob Zuma since 2014. He was elected as Deputy President of the African National Congress (ANC) . He is also the Chairman of the National Planning Commission, which is responsible for strategic planning for the country.

Almost the whole of South Africa see him respects him as a skillful negotiator and strategist. This makes him  a potential future president. Ramaphosa built up the biggest and most powerful trade union in South Africa—the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). He played a crucial role, with Roelf Meyer of the National Party, during the negotiations to bring about a peaceful end to apartheid and steer the country towards its first democratic elections in April 1994.

He is married to Dr. Tshepo Motsepe and he has four children. He has been very active in South African politics for a long time now so that makes him a promising future President SA would gladly vote for come 2019 general election. Being South African Vice president for two years gives him all the popularity and experience he needs to win a presidential election.

Ramaphosa was Nelson Mandela’s pick as future president.

2. Helen Zille.



Otta Helene “Helen” Zille (legal name Maree née Zille)   is a South African politician. She is the current Premier of the Western Cape since 2009. She is a member of the Western Cape Provincial Parliament. The former leader of South Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) political party. She is also a former Mayor of Cape Town.

All these offices held and currently holding makes her a big treat to any one contesting 2019 presidential election is she contests.

The DA has been governing the Western Cape, one of South Africa’s nine provinces, since the 2009 general election, having won a bigger majority at the most recent election in 2014. That is a big advantage to her. The DA is the only party to have increased its share of the vote in every national election held since 1994, winning 22.23% of the vote in the most recent parliamentary election. The party “draws support from all main population groups in South Africa.”

Zille is a former journalist and anti-apartheid activist, and was one of the journalists who exposed the truth behind the death of Black Consciousness leader Steve Biko while working for the Rand Daily Mail in the late 1970s.

In the political arena, Zille has worked in all three tiers of government – as the Western Cape province’s education MEC (1999–2004), as a Member of Parliament (2004–2006), as Mayor of Cape Town(2006–2009), and as Premier of the Western Cape (2009–present).

Zille was selected as World Mayor of the Year in 2008 – from a field of 820 candidates. She was also chosen as Newsmaker of the year 2006 by the National Press Club in July 2007, and as one of 24 former finalists in the South African Woman of the Year Award.

She speaks English, Afrikaans, and Xhosa as well as German.


3. Julius Malema.


Julius Sello Malema is the leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) EFF is a South African political party, which he founded in July 2013. He previously served as President of the African National Congress Youth League from 2008 to 2012. Malema was a member of the ANC until his expulsion from the party in April 2012. He occupies a notably controversial position in South African public and political life, having risen to prominence. He has been described by both Zuma and the Premier of Limpopo Province as the “future leader” of South Africa.

Malema is arguably the second most popular person in SA behind president Zuma.

The expelled former African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL)  and his allies poss a great treat to anyone intending to run for presidency come 2019.

EFF is currently the third-largest party in both houses of the South African parliament, receiving 1,169,259 votes and a 6.35% share of the vote in the 2014 general election. Malema is believed to be brave, outspoken, fearless and ambitious. Those make him a great potential president if he choses to run.


4. Mmusi Maimane.

Mmusi Aloysias Maimane was born 6 June 1980. He is a South African politician and the leader of South Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) political party since 10 May 2015. He is also the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly of South Africa since 29 May 2014. He is the former leader of the DA in the Johannesburg City Council and the former DA National Spokesperson. His rise to national attention began in 2011, when he was elected to be the DA’s Johannesburg mayoral candidate in the 2011 municipal elections. He has served as Leader of the Official Opposition on the Johannesburg City Council until May 2014. In addition to his political career, he is also a pastor and elder of the deeply conservative Liberty Church.

The leader of the official opposition may be set to go head to head with ANC in the run-up to the 2019 general elections. His experience in politics, being a leader of DA, being a man of God makes South Africans love him. These might tempt SA to vote him into office if he choses to run for presidency.


5.Fikile Mbalula.

Fikile Mbalula born 8 April 1971 in the Free State is the Minister of Sport and Recreation. He is a former deputy minister of police. He is a member of the national executive committee of the African National Congress and former leader of the African National Congress Youth League.

Becoming the minister of Sport and Recreation has made Mbalula very famous in South Africa. This could aid his political ambitions if he decides to run for presidency come 2019 election.

In the 2009 general elections he was the manager of the ANC election campaign, which was considered highly successful.



Apart from politics, he is an ardent supporter of the Kaizer Chiefs Football Club which is the most supported football club in the country. Almost all the sport loving citizens of SA might opt to vote for Mbalula if he decides to contest.


6. Gwede Mantashe.

Gwede Mantashe  is a South African politician, who currently serves as the Secretary General of the African National Congress. He is also a former chairperson of the South African Communist Party.

Born in 1955 in Cala in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, Mantashe was the Secretary-General of the National Union of Mineworkers until their 12th National Conference held in May 2006 where he was succeeded by Frans Baleni. He made history by becoming the first trade unionist to be appointed to the board of Directors of a JSE Limited-listed company, namely Samancor, in 1995.

He served for two years as Chairperson of the Technical Working Group of the Joint Initiative for Priority Skills Acquisition (Jipsa).

He is currently a member of the Politburo of the South African Communist Party.

Mantashe being the Secretary General to the county’s ruling party means he could lobby for the support of 249 seats ANC has in the National Assembly.


7. Floyd Shivambu.



Nyiko Floyd Shivambu born 1 January 1983 is a young South African politician serving as a member of parliament for the Economic Freedom Fighters, (EFF). He was born in Malamulele, Limpopo. He is the Deputy President of the Economic Freedom Fighters. He is EFF’s Parliamentary Chief Whip in the South African Parliament, who serves in the Trade and Industry Portfolio Committee and the Standing Committee on Finance. Shivambu is also a Member of the Pan African Parliament, serving in the Rural Economy, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment Committee.

His political career is as follows –

  • Spokesperson of African National Congress Youth League (2008–2012).
  • SRC President at University of Witwatersrand (2004–2005).
  • National Executive of South African Students Congress.
  • Students Representative of Joint Initiative for Priority Skills Acquisition (2006–2007);
  • Board Member of the National Students’ Financial Aid Scheme (2008–2012).
  • Member of Parliament for the EFF (2014–present).
  • Member of the Pan African Parliament since 2014.

Shivambu is responsible for Policy, Research, and International Relations.

Since their days in the ANC Youth League, Shivambu and Julius Malema have appeared as close political allies. Following their suspension from the ANC, Shivambu co-founded the EFF, alongside Malema. He co-edited a book about Malema, titled The Coming Revolution.

He is well known and supported in SA. This gives him a big chance if he decides to run for presidency come 2019.


8. Pravin Gordhan.

Pravin Jamnadas Gordhan born 12 April 1949 in Durban is a South African politician and current Minister of Finance, a position he had previously held from 2009-2014. He is also the former Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, serving from 2014–2015.

He was previously the Commissioner of the South African Revenue Service from 1999 to 2009. From 1991 and 1994, he chaired the Convention for a Democratic South Africa.

As a member of parliament from 1994 to 1998, Gordhan chaired the parliamentary committee that focused on the implementation of the new Constitution and the transformation of local government in the post-apartheid.

Gordhan was chairman of the World Customs Organization in from 2000 to 2006.

The conflict between the Hawks, the presidency, the SARS, the treasury and the Guptas has given minister Gordhan much needed publicity that will make him a big candidate if he decides to run for presidency come 2019.


9. Patricia de Lille.


Patricia de Lille born 17 February 1951 is a South African politician and Mayor of Cape Town. She was the founder and the leader of the Independent Democrats, a South African political party which she formed in 2003 during a floor-crossing window. On 15 August 2010, the ID merged with the Democratic Alliance, South Africa’s official opposition, and de Lille took on dual party membership until her party was fully dissolved in May 2014.

De Lille was voted 22nd in the Top 100 Great South Africans, and is noted for her role in investigations into the country’s controversial Arms Deal.

Awards and Recognition.

De Lille was awarded the Freedom of the City of Birmingham, Alabama, and in 2004 was awarded the honour of being one of the Top 5 Women in Government and Government Agencies. She was also awarded the 2004 Old Mutual South African Leadership Award in the Category of Woman Leadership.

In July 2006 she was the first woman to be recognised as an Honorary Colonel in the South African National Defence Force. In August 2006 she received the City Press and Rapport Newspaper award as one of top 10 women in South Africa.

DA governs Johannesburg (South Africa’s largest city), Tshwane (including Pretoria, the administrative capital), Cape Town (South Africa’s second-largest city and the seat of parliament), Nelson Mandela Bay and various other municipalities.

All these put her in grand position to succeed if she wishes to contest for presidency come 2019.



10. Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

Mangosuthu Buthelezi born 27 August 1928 is a South African politician and Zulu tribal leader who founded the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP). In 1975 and was Chief Minister of the KwaZulu bantustan until 1994. He was Minister of Home Affairs of South Africa from 1994 to 2004. His praise name is Shenge.

He played a key role in creating a framework for a negotiated solution to South Africa’s racial conflict, signing the landmark Mahlabatini Declaration of Faith in 1974 with Harry Schwarz.  He continues to serve as both leader of the IFP and an MP, retaining his seat in the 2014 general election.

The subsequent candidates word of mentioning include –


11 .Dr. Bonginkosi Emmanuel “Blade” Nzimande

Former Minister for Higher Education and Training He has been the General Secretary of the South African Communist Party  He has a doctorate degree in philosophy specialising in sociology. He came out strongly against proposals for nationalisation at the COSATU conference in June 2011, stating that it is not “inherently progressive” as it depended on which class interests were being advanced.


12. Solly Tshepiso Msimanga.

Mayor of Tshwane.


13.Lindiwe Mazibuko.

South African politician, musician and the former Parliamentary Leader for the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA)

14. Jackson Mthembu.

15. Makhenkesi Stofile.