As vote tallying continues, early indications are that the ANC will not lose its seat of power. Analysts predict that the party will once again reduce its majority but after an election that will be known for thumb selfies and inclement weather that resulted in a poor voter turnout, Cyril and his comrades will still be in the driving seat.
However large or small the winning margin will be, an ANC victory is positive news for the mining industry. When Ramaphosa made his sweeping cabinet changes in February last year, he appointed Gwede Mantashe as Minister of Mineral Resources and tasked him with rebuilding the relationship between government and industry, which at the time, was hanging on by mere threads after the damage done by Mosebenzi Zwane.
Since then “Gweezi” has done well to mend the rift between the two entities and has won the plaudits of key mining players. Mantashe is well liked in mining – by companies and workers alike – and as chairperson of the ruling party, no doubt he has massive clout within the confines of Albert Luthuli House.
There is likely to be another cabinet reshuffle on the cards in the weeks to come. But, in the interest of continuing to build the bridge between industry and government, Ramaphosa will do well to keep Mantashe in his current role. Both men earned their political stripes in the mining industry and know it well, hence they won’t do anything to derail the progress made in the last year. As such, an ANC victory will come as good news to the industry as Mantashe looks likely to stay on as head of DMR.
Why did NUM urge its members to vote ANC? Read about it here: