The African National Congress might be at the crossroads amid state capture and corruption allegations that threaten to split the party, but the 105-year-old organisation has young capable leaders who can take the ANC to the 2019 general elections, and possibly secure a victory for the party at the polls.
Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams (40):
- Currently serving as the deputy minister of telecommunications and postal services, Ndabeni-Abrahams, was born in Sakhela Village in Mthatha, Eastern Cape, and has been an ANC MP since 2009.
- She was previously the deputy minister of communications before she was moved to her current position during President Jacob Zuma’s infamous midnight Cabinet reshuffle on March 30 earlier this year.
- Ndabeni-Abrahams is also a member of the Eastern Cape provincial executive committee (PEC) and a member of the ANC provincial working committee (PWC).
- Among her qualifications, Ndabeni-Abrahams boasts a Project Management Diploma from Cranefields College, and she is reportedly pursuing her masters in business management administration at Regent Business School.
- The minister was a member of the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) national executive committee and member of the North West Committee from 2008 to 2010 before she joined parliament.
- Ndabeni-Abrahams has been closely associated with Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa’s campaign to be elected as Zuma’s successor.
Ronald Lamola (32):
- A former deputy president of the ANCYL, Lamola is a lawyer by profession, and he is very popular among youth league members.
- Lamola grew up on a small farm in Mpumalanga.
- He joined the ANCYL in 1996 at the age of 14. Lamola also previously served as the acting president of the league after Julius Malema (current president of the Economic Freedom Fighters) was expelled in 2012.
- In September, he was among three new board members appointed by parliament to the embattled Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA).
- Lamola has publicly called for Zuma to step down, and made a case for young leaders to be promoted in the ANC.
- Among his many leadership roles, in 2004 Lamola was elected SRC president at the University of Venda after he enrolled as a student.
- He is also former provincial chairperson of the South African Students Congress in Limpopo.
Khusela Sangoni (38):
- Sangoni is currently the national communications manager at the governing party’s headquarters at Luthuli House.
- She has been described as a “seasoned communicator” by the ANC. Sangoni has extensive experience in public and private sector communications and media relations.
- Among her many roles, she was the former spokesperson for the Gauteng MECs for finance, Paul Mashatile and Mandla Nkomfe.
- Sangoni is currently a member of the ANC Gauteng provincial executive committee (PEC).
- She was a member of the ANCYL and the ANC Women’s League.
- It is unclear which presidential frontrunner Sangoni supports between Ramaphosa and former AU chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, but the Gauteng PEC has endorsed the deputy president’s campaign.
The ANC will elect its new top six leaders (possibly more than six) and members of the NEC at its 54th national conference at Nasrec Expo Centre in Johannesburg next month.