Ramaphosa affairs: ‘It shows you can also cheat the country’

Cyril Ramaphosa is the latest high profile politician to face a sex scandal. The Sunday Independent has reported on not one but eight extramarital affairs the deputy president has allegedly been involved in. The article claims Ramaphosa maintains many of these women by paying their tuition fees and and expenses.

Ramaphosa is currently campaigning to be the next president of the ANC. If he is voted in in December, he will run for president of the country in 2019. We asked Joburgers if these revelations mean Ramaphosa is fit for leadership.

Maggie Nkosi, 22, banking intern, CBD
Everyone makes mistakes but a leader is someone you should be proud of and he should lead by example. These people take responsibility for leading a country. You cannot have a leader who has a secret life. If you lead you should expose yourself completely. This thing of my separate and private life can’t exist. Imagine if we as young people worked under him, it would be in our mind that we should sleep with him to get ahead in life or we would not feel comfortable around him.

In 2015 and again this year, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba was outed by his ex-mistress Buhle Mkhize on social media. It seems to have had little effect on his political career.

Thabisa Magano, 28, store assistant, Johannesburg
His private life has nothing to do with his political leadership, it is his personal life. If you going to be having an affair, it is out of the business shift. He is a good leader and for him to already be where he is, it is not like he was just placed there, he deserved to be there. We aren’t even sure if this is all true. I don’t think cheating is normalised. There are a lot of people who are committed to their wives and girlfriends.

Remember “C.l.i.t is requested”? Jeff Radebe, a Minister in the Presidency, sent the now infamous SMS to presidential photographer Siyasanga Mbambani earlier this year. Mbambani was suspended over this and similar incidents. Radebe apologised publically but still holds office.

Thembi Kubheka, 29, shop assistant, Alexandria
Cyril Ramaphosa’s supposed to be a role model and a respected person because he is in line to be the leader of South Africa. When you do things like this, it is not okay. It affects everyone and shows that each and every man can do things like this. We can’t respect him any more. Cheating is not a good thing, it shows you don’t respect yourself or the person you are with. I won’t vote for that. It shows you can also cheat the country.

In 2011, then minister of sport Fikile Mbalula denied having an affair with a model. Five years later he admitted to the affair on a talk show saying it was just a one night stand. Mbalula is now the minister of police and is fighting crime one tweet at a time.

Ndumiso Magida, 20, student, Germiston
He has abused his power by funding these women’s education and having sex in return. I feel like he still has the ability to lead though. Cheating is normal, we are human. We are attracted to a lot of people that we see but it is wrong. People don’t hide their affairs and are proud about it like with blessers and blessees.

Ramaphosa rubbished the Independent’s claims at a rally on Sunday saying it was a “targeted attack” aimed at people who had spoken out against corruption within the ANC. Dirty tricks or no, history has shown that, in South Africa, infidelity is no obstacle to political ascendance.

Featured image via Flickr