POLITICS

ANC NEC Debate Over Zuma's Future Continues

The NEC has traditionally avoided voting on any contentious issue but instead prefer to "persuade each other through debate."

28/05/2017 09:25 SAST | Updated 28/05/2017 09:27 SAST
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The anti-Zuma faction has argued that the party risked losing crucial general elections taking place in 2019 due to the president's protracted stay.

A long drawn out battle over President Jacob Zuma's future is set to continue when the ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting continues on Sunday.

Zuma is facing a second motion of no confidence in 6 months.

ANC guru policy and former head of government communications Joel Netshitenzhe tabled a motion for the president to be recalled as head of state on Saturday.

An insider told News24 that Netshitenzhe argued that the case against Zuma had "worsened" since last November's motion by former Tourism minister Derek Hanekom.

Hannekom's motion was defeated during a tense battle with Zuma's allies.

The motion forced the meeting to be extended by an extra day.

Dwindling support

The NEC has traditionally avoided voting on any contentious issue but instead prefer to "persuade each other through debate."

Sources attending the NEC in Irene told News 24 that a long list of members is expected to argue for and against Zuma's departure.

Those who were said to have supported Netshitenzhe's motion included Hanekom who was fired during Zuma's midnight cabinet reshuffle,

Also said to be supporting it were Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, his deputy Joe Phaahla, Gauteng ANC chairperson Paul Mashatile and provincial secretary Hope Papo.

The anti-Zuma faction has argued that the party risked losing crucial general elections taking place in 2019 due to the president's protracted stay.

They also took issue with the growing list of scandals around Zuma as well as growing voices calling for him to go.

The third day of the meeting, where more debates in support or against the motion were to continue, started off with fresh reports alleging that the controversial Gupta family, with close ties to the president, were assisting him establish an exit strategy, which could see him relocate him and his family to Dubai.

It also blew the lid off of how the family had managed to do business with government and become close senior government officials in government and in state owned enterprises.

Zuma's dwindling support within the liberation movement has also seen the ANC's alliance partners calling for him to step down and, for the first time in the country's 23 year old history, it also saw South Africans' taking to the streets demanding that "Zuma must fall."

The president has also lost favour with the religious leaders who recently, under the banner of the South African Council of Churches, released findings of its unburdening panel's report into state capture raising concern over what it dubbed a system of organised chaos and claiming government had lost its moral legitimacy.

Academics from some of the country's top universities also joined the fray releasing their own report which claimed that through the Gupta's influence over the president, a soft coup d'etat had taken place in South Africa. -- News24