There are only three ANC leaders who have been featured on the national executive committee lists of the two ANC presidential candidates.
Zweli Mkhize, ANC treasurer-general
While he is also a candidate for the post of ANC president, Mkhize has proven to be an influential figure in the ANC, and is wanted by Ramaphosa and Dlamini-Zuma. He was the premier of KwaZulu-Natal and the chancellor of the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
According to African News Agency, Mkhize, 61, a medical doctor and politician, was born in Willowfontein, Pietermaritzburg, on February 2, 1956.
In 1987, he graduated with an MBChB degree from the University of Natal (now University of KwaZulu-Natal) and the following year, Mkhize did his internship at McCords Hospital in Durban before being employed at Edendale Hospital in his hometown of Pietermaritzburg.
Thoko Didiza, former minister of agriculture
Didiza was the ANC’s candidate for Tshwane mayor despite not having any roots in the city, as she was born in Durban. Having been close to former president Thabo Mbeki, she became the CEO of the Thabo Mbeki African Leadership Institute at the University of South Africa in 2012.
Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, defence minister
Though Mapisa-Nqakula was told to explain how the Guptas accessed military information for their wedding held at Sun City in 2013, she is still considered a worthy member by both presidential candidates.
She has held several high-level positions in the party, including president of the ANCWL, deputy chairperson of the political oversight committee in parliament and minister of correctional services and home affairs.