Jacob Zuma To Face No-Confidence Vote – ANC

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South Africa’s ruling African National Congress has called a vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma and hopes to replace him as early as Thursday, as the country’s embattled leader defied demands to step down.

“We will possibly elect a new president on Thursday … if not Friday,” ANC treasurer general Paul Mashatile told journalists, assuming scandal-hit Zuma will lose the vote.

“We want certainty.

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“We would like the incoming president [to hold the postponed State of the Nation address] without delay.”

The vote of no confidence, requested by opposition party Economic Freedom Fighters, had initially been scheduled for Feb. 22.

Some members of the ANC have long asked Mr. Zuma to step down, and the party itself formally took a position on the matter by asking Mr. Zuma to resign.

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The party’s Treasurer-General, Paul Mashatile, said on Wednesday that the party is starting “a new era.”

“The conference of ANC has created new hope. Our people want to see change. We want to go with renewal,” Mr. Mashatile said.

He added that the deadline given to Mr. Zuma would expire on Wednesday night.

If Mr. Zuma resigns, the cabinet would stay, Mr. Mashatile said, but should he be removed via a no-confidence vote, the entire cabinet would have to be removed, the ANC treasurer-general added.

In televised remarks Wednesday, Zuma said the ANC had treated him unfairly and questioned the party’s plans to rush him out of office. He confirmed that he had offered to resign by June if the ANC agreed to a phased transition.



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