Published On: Thu, Feb 15th, 2018

Why Jacob Zuma Resigns As S/Africa’s President

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South Africa’s embattled President Jacob Zuma has resigned with immediate effect.

Mr Zuma said that violence and division within the ANC had influenced his decision to step down.

He said: “No life should be lost in my name and also the ANC should never be divided in my name.

“I have therefore come to the decision to resign as president of the republic with immediate effect,” he said.

“Even though I disagree with the decision of the leadership of my organisation, I have always been a disciplined member of the ANC.

“As I leave, I will continue to serve the people of South Africa as well as the ANC, the organisation I have served all of my life.”

He made the announcement in a televised address to the nation on Wednesday evening.

Earlier, Mr Zuma’s governing ANC party told him to step down or face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

He resignation was coming barely 24 hours after he promised to quit office within three to six months.

The 75-year-old has been under increasing pressure to give way to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who took over from Zuma as the ANC’s new leader.

Mr Zuma, who has been in power since 2009, faces numerous allegations of corruption.

His resignation came at the end of a long speech in which he said he disagreed with the way the ANC had acted towards him.

He said he did not fear a motion of no-confidence, adding: “I have served the people of South Africa to the best of my ability.”

Zuma has been under intense pressure to step down ever since Ramaphosa, South Africa’s deputy president, became the ANC’s leader.

The ruling party has maintained that the president had done nothing wrong and that recalling him was a question of avoiding two centres of power, with Ramaphosa as head of the party and Zuma the president of the country.

But Zuma said he did not agree with the party’s decision, insisting there was no basis for asking him to step down.

“It was very unfair to me that this issue is raised,” he told state broadcaster SABC. “Nobody has ever provided the reasons. Nobody is saying what I have done,” he added.

“We have a lot of resolutions to deal with [as the ANC], but we are spending so much time with ‘Zuma must go’. I don’t understand what’s the rush.”

Zuma, whose second term ends next year, became president in 2009.

His time in office has been marked by a string of corruption allegations. Zuma has repeatedly claimed his innocence and said the move to push him out did not augur well for the party.

“I think we are being plunged into a crisis that we will regret,” he said.

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