Former ANC NEC member Barbara Hogan backs Ramaphosa

18 December 2017 - 13:03 By Neo Goba And Nomahlubi Jordaan
ANC presidential hopeful, Cyril Ramaphosa, on day two of the 54th national conference.
ANC presidential hopeful, Cyril Ramaphosa, on day two of the 54th national conference.
Image: SIMPHIWE NKWALI/ Sunday Times

Former ANC NEC member Barbara Hogan has backed deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa as the party’s president.

Speaking to TimesLIVE on the sidelines of the ANC elective conference‚ which is currently under way in Nasrec‚ Hogan said about Ramaphosa: "My preference is for Cyril. He has always been‚ in his history‚ a smart negotiator. He always has the long view in mind and he is not the type who would smash the organisation for own his ego."

Hogan took a swipe at President Jacob Zuma for suggesting that her late husband Ahmed Kathrada was persuaded to write an open letter he addressed to him.

"I reject it [Zuma's suggestion] with absolute contempt. The Kathrada Foundation has released the drafts Kathy was working on with his e-mails. I know that Kathy decided a long time ago that he had to write a public letter‚" Hogan said.

Zuma told the SABC on Friday: "Comrade Kathrada‚ in his day‚ would not write such a letter to me. When he's old‚ he now gets into writing letters. Why? I think I know why. Even the language ... Bear in mind‚ I worked as an intelligence (operative). I can read what others can't read in a letter‚ even who possibly influenced this letter. People were very much unfair to influence comrades who are advanced in age."

In April‚ the Kathrada Foundation published the stalwart's letter calling on Zuma to step down.

"I can show you the computers he was working on‚ he spent months crafting this letter. It was one of the most painful things he had ever felt he ought to do ... This kind of thing of not looking at the message but tying to discredit the messenger‚ particularly when it's a messenger of that status‚ is actually shocking‚" Hogan said.

The letter caused a stir earlier this year when it was read at Kathrada's funeral‚ which Zuma did not attend.