New World Wealth has conducted a survey looking at potential candidates for the next general election in South Africa, in 2019.
The information consulting services firm said that it asked just over 1,200 South Africans for their presidential candidate preference for the next election, based on a list of the five likely candidates.
The survey sample was representative of demographic and income groups across SA, it said.
The survey picked three candidates from within the ANC, and a single candidate each from the second and third biggest political parties in the country.
The findings of the survey are hardly surprising, although given the current political strength the ANC has in the country.
Speaking in June, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said that the party hoped to uproot the ANC in 2019, with its 2029 vision would see it holding power for 10 years already.
The Economic Freedom Front, under Julius Malema, surprised in its debut in 2014, taking more than 1 million votes, or 6.35%.
New World Wealth listed the following candidates:
Cyril Ramaphosa is the current deputy president of SA and the African National Congress (ANC).
“He is arguably the most well defined and well-known potential candidate as he was heavily involved in the formation of the new South Africa during the 1990-1994 negotiations,” New World Wealth said.
Ramaphosa has extensive experience as a lawyer, business leader, politician and trade union leader. He has previously served as ANC secretary general and NUM secretary general (and founder).
It is well known that he was Nelson Mandela’s pick as future president, the survey’s publishers said.
71% of people polled said Ramaphosa would be the best candidate.
Gwede Mantashe is the current secretary general of the ANC. He is widely tipped to be the next leader of the ANC, especially if Ramaphosa decides not to run.
He is a former chairperson of the South African Communist Party (SACP) and like Ramaphosa he is the former secretary general of NUM.
10% of people polled said he would be the best candidate.
Baleka Mbete is the current Chairperson of the ANC and speaker of the house. She previously served as deputy president of SA (although only for a short time) and secretary general of the ANC’s woman’s league.
In her favor, there is strong pressure for a female candidate, particularly from the woman’s league. It is difficult to say if she will run for the ANC leadership. At this point, she is considered to be the likely vice-presidential candidate for the ANC at the next election.
8% of people polled said she would be the best candidate.
Mmusi Maimane is the current leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), the 2nd largest party in the South African parliament.
The DA’s decision to elect Maimane in May 2015 was widely heralded by the local media, NWW said.
“His appointment is clearly aimed at winning the African vote. However, at the same time the DA are assuming that they will continue to get the white vote, but this may be unrealistic.”
Having an African leader and one with so little experience may well push many more experienced white people out of the party and voters are likely to notice.
Maimane is also a well-known proponent of BEE and AA policies which are against the interests of white voters. Another party may well emerge to attract the white vote, NWW said.
The support of colored voters also cannot be guaranteed. “It is important to remember that in 1994 the bulk of colored voters voted for the Nationalists (NP). They effectively only started voting DA after the DP and NP merged in 2000. They could easily switch to another party again,” the report said.
Maimane’s appointment is also aimed at winning the Gauteng province, where the DA performed well in the 2014 general election.
However, there are risks there too as it could end up losing the Western Cape as a result – over 80% of Western Cape voters polled in our study said they would have preferred Patricia de Lille as leader of the DA.
6% of people polled said Maimane would be the best candidate for the next election.
Julius Malema is the current leader of the Economic Freedom Front (EFF), the 3rd largest party in the SA parliament.
He is a well-known proponent of Robert Mugabe type policies such as nationalization. Notably, in 2000 following a referendum defeat to an opposition party, Mugabe’s ZANU PF government banned the free media, nationalized several businesses and ordered land invasions of white-owned farms.
Mugabe was also implicated in the rigging of several elections in his favor. There are concerns that SA could go down a similar path if Malema comes to power.
5% of people polled said he would be the best candidate.
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