South Africa’s ruling party backs Zuma after calls for him to quit

Cape Town – African National Congress MPs will be expected to vote in line with the decision of the ANC caucus on the motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma.

“We expect the rand to continue to weaken in the next few sessions, with the USD/ZAR breaching the key 13.0275 resistance level on concerns about further sovereign rating downgrades”, said economists at 4Cast in a research note. Zuma survived a similar revolt in November. “Some of them are long-serving cabinet ministers, they have good pensions”, he added.

Forty-five members of the NEC opposed Zuma, 41 backed him and the allegiances of the remaining 20 were unclear, the Sunday Times reported, without saying where it got the information.

In a statement released just before a media briefing on the NEC’s outcomes, the veterans said Zuma supporters placed their own narrow political and financial interests above those of the country.

Mr. Zuma has been South African president since 2009 and won re-election in 2014.

Mantashe also confirmed there had been a call made during the NEC meeting for the president to consider stepping down. The loss of support for the ANC in the elections was not Zuma’s fault, as the party had taken collective responsibility, and the Gupta scandal with the emails and everything were fake news propaganda, they said.

President Zuma, however, survived a recall.

It’s now unlikely his party will vote against him in a motion of no confidence in Parliament. “And if we can have a commission that does that for us, the ANC will be a better organisation”, Mantashe said. The Constitutional Court is considering whether to rule that the vote can be held by secret ballot, which would allow ANC lawmakers to cast their ballots without fear of losing their seats.

State capture is at the centre of calls from within and outside the ANC for Zuma to quit.

It said that it would be foolhardy to deny that campaigning was already going on, but said that nominations for the party’s top position would only open in September 2017.

The poll came as mounting evidence of Zuma’s involvement in “state capture” entered the public domain‚ causing senior ANC figures to distance themselves from him.

The party’s stalwarts, the term used to describe the golden generation of leaders and activists allied to the ANC, have held a series of meetings and written numerous letters asking the party to hold a special national conference to renew itself.

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