Sara-Jayne Makwala King20 May 2024 | 10:46

Cyril Ramaphosa confident of election win: 'I WILL return. I WILL be voted into power'

ANC President Cyril Ramphosa opens up about the NHI, Jacob Zuma, and his promised 'New Dawn' ahead of next week's national elections.

Cyril Ramaphosa confident of election win: 'I WILL return. I WILL be voted into power'

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa joins 702’s Clement Manyathela and EWN’s Tshidi Madia ahead of next week's general election.

Click below to watch the interview.

There are days left until South Africans go to the polls in what political pundits call the most significant elections since 1994. President Cyril Ramaphosa arrived at Primedia's Johannesburg studios for a one-hour sit-down.

Here's what he had to say on several key issues:

On the Zuma Constitutional Court ruling 

The Constitutional Court on Monday unanimously ruled that former president Jacob Zuma is not eligible to stand for election to Parliament.

Zuma was convicted for contempt of court and sentenced, 'for purposes of section 47(1)(e)... [he is]... not eligible to be a member of and not qualified to stand for election to [Parliament] until five years have elapsed since the completion of his sentence.'

Speaking moments after it was announced,  and telling listeners, 'as people leave our [ANC] family, we get stronger', the President responded to criticism that the ANC was slow to use its constitution to deal with Zuma.

"In the end we [the ANC] followed the [ANC] constitution and we took the decision that we took at the time. Some decisions sometimes, you'll find that maybe you should have taken a different decision... it is what it is. We took the decision to put him through a disciplinary process and that is what we have done. What we should be found guilty of is following our constitution. We [the ANC] followed our constitution to the letter. We could not have done it any other way."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"I'm not concerned about this [ConCourt ruling] instigating violence... [But] Should there be any threat of violence, our security forces are ready."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa


Last week, years after it was first introduced, President Ramaphosa signed on the dotted line of the contentious National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill.

Ramaphosa says universal healthcare is a 'no-brainer' and says the NHI will ensure healthcare for all, the poor and the rich.

He denies its signing into law last week was strategically timed.

"This is not an election ploy. The NHI has been in process for years."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"We cannot hold back giving our people universal health coverage... even the NHS in the UK, when it was introduced, it was not perfect."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"It's going to take time... it's going to be phased in. It's going to be a process."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa

On loadshedding

Many South Africans believe the suspension of loadshedding is an election ploy by the ANC-led government.

The President, however, says it's not.

"It's not an election ploy. Its the good and hard work being done at Eskom... they should really be applauded."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"We've had more than 50 days without loadshedding... it is going to depend on the energy availability factor whether we've got enough power stations available. Right now we've hit an energy availability factor of 70%... If we do have loadshedding, it will not be as severe as we have seen in the past."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa

On his first term

It has been almost five years since Ramaphosa took his oath as the sixth democratically-elected President, declaring, “Yes, South Africa, Thuma Mina”.

"What we sought to do when we got into office for this sixth term was to move South Africa ahead and ,as we sought to do so, a number of headwinds started detracting us from our march forward."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"We had State Capture to deal with, which by the way we have stopped - it was an overriding process... it had also weakened our SOEs... in ways that had really debiliated Eskom and Transnet and Prasa..."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"The second thing was Covid. It descended on us soon after the sixth administration started. The we had the floods, then we had the unrest in July 2021."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa
"A lot has been done in the past five years."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa

Final words...

"I will be voted back into power and I will serve my full term, and 'serve' is the operative word; serve the people of South Africa."
- ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa

Scroll up to listen to the full interview or to watch the video.