S. African president faces top ruling party officials
S. African president faces top ruling party officials
Some senior officials in the African National Congress want Cyril Ramaphosa to take over as presidentSIPHIWE SIBEKO REUTERS
05 February, 2018, 06:46
The ANC's national working committee (NWC) is set to convene an urgent meeting, following talks between President Jacob Zuma and the ANC's top six officials about Zuma's possible removal from office on Sunday night, News24 reported.
The ANC has the power to recall President Zuma from his duties as president of the country before the SONA address and send a clear signal that it is embarking on a new path - a path of true leadership, in tune with the needs of the people, and committed to good governance and the end of state capture.
Sources said this was to help avoid accusations of conflict of interest being levelled against Ramaphosa because he was expected to take over from Zuma as soon as Zuma stepped down.
Opposition leader Julius Malema, a former ANC member, said Mr Zuma had refused to resign at the meeting late on Sunday.
Zuma and the Guptas denied any wrongdoing, though the president paid back some money for the home upgrades after the Constitutional Court ruled against him. It would need to call a meeting of the party's National Executive Committee to force Zuma to quit.
The ANC's NWC conducts the day-to-day running of the party.
In a fresh attempt to kick out President Jacob Zuma, 75, the embattled leader is gearing up for another no-confidence vote this month as splits within his own party threatens to undo him.
Mr Malema was one of the first to disclose that Mr Ramaphosa had won the race to succeed Mr Zuma as ANC leader in December.
"As the community and citizens of South Africa, also the members of the ANC are just sick and exhausted of President Jacob Zuma".
Pressure remains on Zuma to step down, though reports suggest he is resisting doing so voluntarily.
Should Zuma step down before the speech, it is understood that National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete will serve as acting president to convene parliament, and then will designate Ramaphosa, who also is the nation's deputy president, to deliver the address.
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