President Jacob Zuma.  Thuli Dlamini. President Jacob Zuma. Thuli Dlamini. Thuli Dlamini

"I Will Resign", Jacob Zuma Featured

News Reports / Wednesday, 07 February 2018 04:20

Reports from Pretoria indicates that African National Congress (ANC) party leaders have accepted President Jacob Zuma of South Africa proposals that his close associates and supporters should not be sidelined after his resignation as President. The defeat of Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the President’s ex wife by Cyril Ramaphosa in party nominations in late December, paved the way for a bitter confrontation between party members over who is retained in the machinery in post Zuma ANC.  

A millionaire businessman, with close friends in South Africa business circles, Mr. Ramaphosa, a one time leader of South Africa biggest trade union group seems determined to chart a different course, from President Zuma’s pro left rhetorics. This would mean that those party members weaned in the heady days the party led the struggle against racial segregation in South Africa are likely to be asked to make way for a ‘new crop’ of party bureaucrats. The sheer number of those considered “yesterday men” and their weight in party decision making process may have played an important role in persuading ANC’s grandees to concede to the outgoing president. Not lost on many, was the pyrrhic nature of Mr. Ramaphosa’s victory over Mme. Dlamini-Zuma, in the December 2017 party elections. The victorious Ramaphosa pulled 2,440 votes, to  Dlamini-Zuma’s  2,261. A mere 179 majority might sound insignificant, given the foundation Cyril Ramaphosa seems inclined towards establishing for the party, as ANC leader and candidate for presidential elections. 

With sixth general elections under its new democratic dispensation less than 28 months away, some in the ANC leader’s camp openly demanded that the party’s National Executive Council (NEC) ask the  President to step down. It has become a tradition within the ANC, for an outgoing President to step down months ahead of general elections for the party’s candidate for President, as a way of boosting his stature, before elections and well before the official beginning of his post election mandate.   


The “deal” that was arrived upon, prelude to the postponed meeting of ANC national executive committee (NEC), ostensibly scheduled to force President Zuma’s removal from office. According to reports, though associates of Cyril Ramaphosa had succeeded in rescheduling meeting, party leaders moved quickly to avert what would have been a civil war at the heart of the party.  Sensing that the rescheduled meeting due to hold at Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town had one agenda and purpose, which is to hand an  ultimatum to Jacob Zuma to step down from power, or be removed, it became necessary to re-examine the president’s ‘preconditions’. 
 
The President, along side the ANC party leader and Ace Magashule, ANC secretary-general present met at his Genadendal, his official residence in Cape Town.  The president’’s list of preconditions were considered during the meeting, which took place on the heels of  Baleka Mbete,  Speaker of the National Assembly announcement that the State of the Nation Address (SONA), which President Zuma should have delivered on Thursday, had been postponed.
Speaking on events that followed, Mr. Magashule disclosed to reporters that “the meeting between the two presidents had been “constructive and robust”. In his words, “Zuma and Ramaphosa agreed that the decision to postpone the state of the nation address was correct”.
 
According to him, the President Zuma and Mr. Ramaphosa  “agreed that the urgent NEC [meeting] called should be postponed after their constructive discussion.”
 
However, when asked if he could be quoted that the president had promised to step down from power,  Mr. Magashule refused to be quoted as having said so, even though reliable sources in the party affirmed that the “deal would see the President Zuma go in a dignified way”. Both men were said to have agreed that on the need to have the party’s NEC formalise the process of the President’s exit, even though issues surrounding who would deliver the now postponed SONA (state of the nation address)  remains unclear.

Afrika247


 

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