The country waited with bated breath last night to hear what President Zuma’s fate would be after the ANC’s NEC meeting was extended by a day.
The NEC’s discussions went into overdrive on Sunday when calls, apparently initiated by Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom, were made for Zuma to step down from his position.
Hanekom’s calls were reportedly supported by fellow cabinet members Thulas Nxesi, Aaron Motsoaledi, Pravin Gordhan and Naledi Pandor. However, it now seems the President’s job is safe after he left the St. George’s Hotel in Irene, Pretoria (where the meeting was being held), to fulfil his presidential duties.
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These include a meeting with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and leaving the country tonight to attend the funeral of Cuban revolutionary and former leader, Fidel Castro who died at the weekend.
According to iol, about two thirds of Zuma’s cabinet wants him removed but about five ANC provincial branches in the country are fully behind him.
Why he will probably stay
The matter of Zuma’s removal was not put to a vote by the NEC. Had that been the unlikely case, Zuma would have been voted out of his position as president of South Africa.
He would still remain ANC President going into the party’s elective conference in December next year.
Zuma apparently told the NEC that stepping down would be like handing himself over to enemies who want him put in jail.
He was likely referring to the EFF and DA, who have on a number of occasions called for Zuma to face criminal charges stemming from the 783 corruption charges against him which were dropped in 2008.
The ANC is expected to at 2pm brief the media on the outcomes of the extended NEC including the outcomes of discussions on Zuma’s fitness to lead the party.
(Featured Image: Gallo Images)
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