Ramaphosa, Cyril(Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa), 1952–, South African political leader, b. Johannesburg. A lawyer, he became involved in the antiapartheid Black Consciousness Movement while a university student and was detained (1974, 1976) for his political activities. A legal adviser to the National Council of Trade Unions, he became the founding general secretary (1982–91) of the National Union of Mineworkers, helping to build it into the country's largest trade union; he also helped found (1985) the Congress of South African Trade Unions. As secretary general (1991–96) of the African National CongressAfrican National Congress
(ANC), the oldest black (now multiracial) political organization in South Africa; founded in 1912. Prominent in its opposition to apartheid, the organization began as a nonviolent civil-rights group.
..... Click the link for more information. , he was the ANC's lead negotiator in the consultations that led to the end of apartheidapartheid
[Afrik.,=apartness], system of racial segregation peculiar to the Republic of South Africa, the legal basis of which was largely repealed in 1991–92. History
..... Click the link for more information. . Elected (1994) to parliament, he chaired (1994–96) the constitutional assembly that wrote South Africa's postapartheid constitution. Nelson MandelaMandela, Nelson Rolihlahla
, 1918–2013, South African statesman. He earned a degree (B.A., 1943) after being expelled from the University College of Fort Hare (for taking part in a student protest) and finishing his studies with the Univ.
..... Click the link for more information. 's preferred choice as his successor, he entered (1997) the private sector after Thabo MbekiMbeki, Thabo Mvuyelwa
, 1942–, South African political leader. Mbeki was born into a politically active family; his father, Govan Mbeki, an official with the African National Congress (ANC), was imprisoned (1964) at Robben Island along with Nelson Mandela, released (1987),
..... Click the link for more information. was selected instead by the ANC and eventually founded (2001) the Shanduka Group, becoming a wealthy business executive. In 2012 he became ANC deputy president with the support of Jacob ZumaZuma, Jacob Gedleyihlekisa,
1942–, South African political leader, b. Indkandla, Natal (now KwaZulu-Natal) prov. Zuma received no formal schooling and joined the African National Congress (ANC) when he was 17, becoming active in the party's military wing in 1962.
..... Click the link for more information. ; two years later he became deputy president of South Africa and chairman of the National Planning Commission. In 2017 he was elected president of the ANC, narrowly defeating Zuma's choice, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Zuma's former wife. After Zuma resigned as president in 2018 under pressure from the ANC, Ramaphosa was elected president of South Africa.