GNU talks get personal and deadly as MK Party says Ramaphosa must go while DA wants Mashatile arrested first


The gloves are off and the political knives are out as the African National Congress (ANC) struggles to navigate the treacherous waters of coalition negotiations following the 2024 elections. Behind the scenes, the battle for power has turned decidedly personal, with the party's potential partners issuing ultimatums that could derail Cyril Ramaphosa's grand vision of a Government of National Unity (GNU).

According to our well-placed sources within the ANC's national executive committee (NEC), the party's internal divisions over working with the Democratic Alliance (DA) have only deepened, despite Ramaphosa's late-night announcement that the door is open for all political parties to join the coalition.

"It's gotten ugly, real ugly," whispered one NEC member, speaking on condition of anonymity. "The gloves are off, and some members are playing hardball. They're not just debating policy – they're making it personal."

The biggest bombshell, our insiders reveal, is the demand from Jacob Zuma's newly formed MK Party that Ramaphosa must step down as ANC president if they are to join the GNU. The former liberation movement, which performed surprisingly well in KwaZulu-Natal, is apparently not willing to work with the current ANC leadership.

"The MK Party made it crystal clear – no Ramaphosa, no deal," divulged a high-ranking official. "They see him as the embodiment of the 'reformist' faction that pushed Zuma out. It's a non-negotiable red line for them."

But Ramaphosa's troubles don't end there. The DA, the official opposition, has also upped the ante, hinting that they will only join the coalition if Deputy President Paul Mashatile is removed from office and faces criminal charges related to the Mashatile Unmasked scandal.

"The DA is playing hardball too," sighed a frustrated NEC member. "They're demanding Mashatile's head on a platter. It's become a personal vendetta for them, not just a political calculation."

Insiders claim these demands have thrown a major spanner in the works, forcing Ramaphosa to frantically re-strategize his approach. The president, who was initially leaning towards a GNU that included the DA, now finds himself caught between a rock and a hard place.

"Ramaphosa was hoping to pull a Mandela and bring his political rivals into the fold," explained a veteran political analyst. "But he's quickly learning that this is no easy task. The egos and personal animosities involved are threatening to derail the whole process."

Moreover, the ANC is also courting the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), and the Patriotic Alliance (PA) in a bid to secure enough support to form a government. But even these negotiations have hit snags, with the parties jockeying for key Cabinet positions and policy concessions.

"It's a delicate dance," sighed one NEC member. "We're trying to keep everyone happy, but it's becoming increasingly difficult. The MK Party and the DA are really throwing a wrench in the works."

As the post-election dust settles, South Africans wait with bated breath to see if Ramaphosa can pull off this political high-wire act. With the country facing a myriad of socio-economic challenges, the success or failure of the GNU could determine the nation's trajectory for years to come.

"Ramaphosa is playing with political dynamite here," warned the political analyst. "If he can't find a way to bridge these deep divides, the consequences could be catastrophic. This is no longer just about policy – it's a battle for the very soul of the ANC."

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