Zuma gets ANC’s nod

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President Jacob Zuma
President Jacob Zuma: Gains ANC’s support.

African National Congress (ANC) has said that it was not part of the campaign to unseat South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma.

Zuma has survived calls to resign, at least for now.

Opposition parties have intensified their efforts to unseat President Zuma, pressuring the ruling party to recall him.

Opposition is also requesting a no-confidence motion from the National Assembly.

ANC’s National Working Committee (NWC) held a lengthy meeting on Tuesday night where President Zuma’s fate was discussed.

The party’s Secretary-General, Mr Gwede Mantashe, on Wednesday told journalists that there was a need for unity, “but healthy debate must be created”.

“There shouldn’t be an expectation that the ANC will be part of a campaign to unseat it’s own president,” said Mr Mantashe.

He said NWC had also reflected on the call by ANC’s tripartite alliance partners – the South African Communist Party (SACP) and Cosatu – for the president to resign, and added that they will engage members on the matter.

President Zuma came under fire for axing Finance minister Pravin Gordhan, an issue Mr Mantashe said had been thrashed out on Tuesday.

“The NWC has accepted the irretrievable breakdown of the relationship between the President and a member of his Cabinet as sufficient explanation for the decision taken by the President.

“The issue of the intelligence report complicated the matter, creating a lot of unhappiness. This was consequently presented as the only reason for his removal which was unfortunate and incorrect,” he said.

Reports had been that President Zuma fired Mr Gordhan over allegations, contained in a leaked report, that he was sabotaging him.

He said the NWC had since congratulated all newly-appointed ministers and the deputies.

“The unfortunate events that transpired following their appointment should not and do not detract from the fact that they, individually and collectively, are very capable comrades who have invaluable skills and experience to offer to the work of government.

We have no doubt they will work with integrity, dedication and humility to serve our people,” he said.

Meanwhile, ANC senior officials have accepted that they made a mistake by publicly criticising President Zuma following the reshuffle.

Source: Africa Review

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