The trouble is that the ANC's branch structure, designed initially as a means of grassroots democracy at work, is in a mess.
Since parties always need money, forcing them to depend on private funders means throwing them into the hands of donors who will demand favours for their cash.
Corruption has been a constant feature of South African political life for much of the past 350 years; solutions will also take time.
The book is set to heighten the debate about the future of the party, whose dominance has been in decline since 2009.
The election of Port Elizabeth's first black mayor in 1995 signalled that the democratic change that had started in 1994 was irreversible. But problems lay ahead.
Ramaphosa’s detractors are unlikely to succeed in their rumoured bid. And, their failure will not be because they’ve suddenly become weak within the administration.
The precedent-setting ruling may cause jitters in dysfunctional municipalities around the country.
Minority parties in Ghana have found ways to stay relevant in elections despite their declining electoral numbers
The black middle class are angry at their exclusion from mainstream economic activity.
Much deeper social forces underlie the struggles within the governing ANC and society over the shape of the economy.
A great deal of analysis on South Africa and the ruling ANC seems to be based on wishful thinking, not concrete reality.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa's decision to double the price of petrol shows very poor judgement and bad leadership.
The Rwandan model can't be replicated easily given that it depends heavily on political dominance and tight, centralised control of patronage networks.
South Africa's ruling ANC has a new leader - Cyril Ramaphosa. But this doesn't mean that the country is out of the woods. Political instability remains a real possibility.
Zuma's last address to South Africa's governing party, the ANC, as its president, betrayed his strange way of dealing with issues. He came across as delusional and self-indulgent.
Are we witnessing the end of an era in which dictators stayed in power for decades? If so this must be good not only for Angola and Zimbabwe but for southern Africa as a whole.
For the first time since its unbanning the ANC needs to find a new direction. Its supporters and South African voters are no longer content with resolutions that promise to end to corruption.
Privatisation talk in South Africa shows how state owned enterprises are being used as tools for enrichment by the connected and less as key elements of development.
Angola's recent election results showed the ruling MPLA losing support across the country. If opposition claims are to be taken seriously, the losses could be more severe than they appear.
The possibility that South Africa's ruling ANC could lose power in 2019 runs like a tragic thread through its policy conference documents. It agrees that its actions have repelled many supporters.