South Africa's Ramaphosa clears diary, pushing for Zuma…

12 February, 2018, 02:11 | Author: Rachel Mcdaniel
  • South Africa: Nelson Mandela Foundation Remembers Madiba's Release

South African President Jacob Zuma's fate is set to be sealed when the top leadership of the ruling African National Congress meets to conclude the transition to a new administration.

Standing on the balcony of Cape Town's pillared City Hall, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered what amounted to a state of the nation address of the kind that Zuma was unable to give as scheduled last week because of the leadership crisis in South Africa, which has one of the continent's biggest economies.

In a strongly worded statement the ANC in the Sarah Baartman Region says the sooner Jacob Zuma steps down from the Presidency the better, labelling his efforts to hold on to the position as "unprincipled conduct".

Speaking at a rally as part of celebrations marking 100 years since the birth of former President Nelson Mandela, he said Zuma's exit should be undertaken in an orderly fashion just as the anti-apartheid icon would have handled it.

Spokesman Pule Mabe declined to comment on whether the meeting of the National Executive Committee, which has the power to instruct Zuma to resign, would discuss Zuma's political future.

Zuma has not said whether he will resign voluntarily before his second term as president ends in the middle of next year.

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Zuma, 75, faces 783 criminal charges, including corruption, racketeering and fraud, linked to a 1999 multibillion-dollar government arms deal.

"As the leadership of the African National Congress, we are now engaged in discussions around the transition to a new administration and specifically to resolve the issues of the position of the President of the Republic".

Sunday newspapers reported that Zuma was negotiating, among other things, an assurance that the state will take care of his legal fees, security for his family and immunity from prosecution.

He added: "The NEC will be meeting tomorrow to discuss this very matter and because our people want this matter to be finalised, the NEC will be doing precisely that. We know you want closure on this matter".

"In defence of Madiba's legacy, we will continue to wage a relentless war on corruption and mismanagement of the resources of our country", said Ramaphosa. The occasion marked the first time Mandela addressed South Africans after 27 years in prison for opposing apartheid. "Don't dictate what he should do and put labels to force him to do what you think must be done now", Mantashe said, slamming analysts who this week asked "where are Ramaphosa's balls" amidst the country's anxiety over Zuma's future. He was freed from Robben Island prisons in 1990 before being elected the country's first black president in 1994. Denis Goldberg was imprisoned in Pretoria.

On Sunday, ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) member Nomvula Mokonyane said the party's NEC will determine when the SONA should happen.

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