Friday, 17 August, 2018

South Africa opposition demands end to Zuma impasse

President Jacob Zuma leaves Tuynhuys the office of the Presidency at parliament after the announcement that his State of the Nation address had been postponed in Cape Town Parliament: Nothing to see here
Ray Hunter | 09 February, 2018, 08:22

By A Correspondent| As reports flared that President Jacob Zuma might not get immunity, top ANC officials said Zuma's resignation letter could be received as early as next Monday.

The ANC had scheduled a meeting on Wednesday evening of its National Executive Committee (NEC), which has the authority to fire Zuma, but canceled it late on Tuesday after "constructive" talks between new ANC leader Cyril Ramaphosa and Zuma.

"South Africa can not continue to be held in limbo while Cyril Ramaphosa and Jacob Zuma, and their respective factions, continue to fight over the terms of Zuma's exit", DA leader Mmusi Maimane said Thursday.

"Our view is that if the president doesn't want to resign, for whatever reason, we have a party to run that is going to be very soon in the election campaign", Mashatile said.

"Lastly, we flatly reject any amnesty agreement or special deal for President Zuma".

"He is not above the law", Maimane said, predicting that "Jacob Zuma will retire in prison".

Earlier on Thursday, DA leader Mmusi Maimane, after consultation with EFF leadership, called on National Assembly speaker Baleka Mbete to schedule an urgent sitting of Parliament on February 13 for the motion of no confidence in Zuma to be debated and voted on.

China says it is against external intervention in Maldives
By 2016 he was again in exile in London, securing political asylum with the help of high-profile human rights lawyer Amal Clooney. The top court of Maldives had ordered the release of many leaders of the Opposition, who were accused of treason.

Ramaphosa said on Wednesday he was holding direct talks with Zuma over a transition of power and he hoped to conclude their discussions "in coming days".

The rand weakened 1.3 percent against the dollar on Wednesday, partly on indications that Zuma may cling onto power for a while longer, and dropped as much as 0.6 percent on Thursday.

The government also postponed an awards ceremony on Saturday at which Zuma was due to officiate, clearing the president's diary. "But President Zuma has declared his unwillingness", said Amanda Gouws, a political science professor at Stellenbosch University.

This comes in the wake of growing frustration by political parties, including the ruling party itself, over Zuma's imminent exit.

Many graft allegations against him have centred on the wealthy Gupta family, who are accused of unfairly obtaining lucrative government contracts and even being able to choose ministerial appointments.

"Shuffling Zuma out of the back-door, with any number of trade-offs and compromises, is not only bad for Mr Ramaphosa - it is bad for South Africa", it said.

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