He has promised to fight rampant corruption and revitalize the economy, a message hailed by foreign investors.
But Professor Qobo said the ANC's political credibility was tarnished by the stench of corruption which hangs over Mr. Zuma and several of his key acolytes and it may fail to win the next election unless Mr. Ramaphosa was able to radically reform the party.
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Ramaphosa, who is South Africa's deputy president, was elected the new leader of the African National Congress (ANC) on Monday, succeeding President Jacob Zuma as party head after Zuma's presidency became tainted with corruption allegations.
Zuma was counting on Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to protect him (they have four children together), and most of the ANC bigwigs, who joined him in plundering the economy, also backed her bid for the presidency.
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One hotel employee told the AFP news agency: "We heard a loud noise and lots of racket in the street". Two people inside the hotel hid from the thieves and alerted police, the official said.
The premier of Mpumalanga, David Mabuza and Free State premier Ace Magashule were elected deputy president and secretary general respectively. It excluded the names of all the people who were prevented from voting by the various court cases.
But Ramaphosa will not be able to deliver on the economic demands of the country until he is in the office of the presidency - and Zuma still holds numerous cards. The ANC won the 2014 elections with 62% of the votes, nearly 40 points ahead of the Democratic Alliance, the main opposition. Majority feel he will succeed in undertaking damage control after the previous corrupt leadership. "The party no longer has the luxury of relying on its liberation dividend", says South African political analyst Nompumelelo Runji, pointing to the ANC's electoral defeats in the 2016 local elections, in which it lost control of three metropolitan areas, including Johannesburg. No one in South Africa would expect or countenance anything like the chaotic takeover of white farms that occurred in Mugabe's Zimbabwe, but many were anxious that the effects on the South African economy would be much the same. According to the national statistical service, the wealthiest 20% of the population consume 65% of income, while the poorest quintile consumes only 3%.An economic survey by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in 2017 noted that an "economic slowdown has pushed up the unemployment rate and income inequalities remain wide", while room for monetary and fiscal stimulus remained "limited". A stagnant economy coupled with near-continuous scandals have - for the first time in South Africa's history - driven large numbers of voters away from the party. "It will have an egalitarian vocabulary but will be fundamentally capitalist".
"Ramaphosa's victory is the best piece of news out of South Africa in years and the strongest repudiation of the Zuma regime", he said. Mr. Ramaphosa's rival, Ms. Dlamini-Zuma had campaigned on a promise to increase black ownership of businesses.As a successful businessman, Mr. Ramaphosa is widely seen as a hope to revive the economy and restore market confidence in South Africa, but structural problems could make meaningful reforms more hard, observers say.
Mr Ramaphosa has a reputation as a shrewd negotiator. The latter's supporters broke out in cheers and singing. More may well be pending if Ramaphosa makes good on his promise to clean up the ANC and put a stop to state capture - as the systematic plundering of state resources by the politically powerful Gupta family and other Zuma loyalists is called in South Africa.
Some party critics hope that Ramaphosa will ask Zuma to step down as president in the next few weeks, hastening the timetable for change.