'I fear no motion of no confidence or impeachment': Zuma has resigned

15 February 2018 - 00:08 By Ernest Mabuza
Jacob Zuma pauses during his televised address on Wednesday when he resigned as head of state.
Jacob Zuma pauses during his televised address on Wednesday when he resigned as head of state.
Image: GCIS

President Jacob Zuma insisted he did not fear a motion of no confidence or impeachment as he told South Africa on Wednesday evening that he had decided to resign as the leader of the country with immediate effect.

This was despite the fact he disagreed with the decision of the leadership of the African National Congress (ANC) to replace him.

"I fear no motion of no confidence or impeachment. They are the lawful mechanisms for the people of this beautiful country to remove their president.

"I've served the people of South Africa to the best of my ability. I am forever grateful that they trusted me with their highest office in the land, but when I accepted the deployment I understood and undertook to subject myself to the supreme law of the land, the Constitution," he said.

Zuma said he was a disciplined member of the organisation. He called on party members to exercise restraint in the wake of his decision.

No life should be lost in my name, and also the ANC should never be divided in my name.
Jacob Zuma

“I have also been disturbed by the instances of violence that have occurred because of the different views among members of our organisation outside our headquarters, Luthuli House,” he said. “No life should be lost in my name, and also the ANC should never be divided in my name.”

Zuma said as he was leaving office, he would continue to serve the people of South Africa as well as the ANC, the organisation he had served throughout his life.
 
“I will dedicate all this energy to work towards the attainment of the policies of the ANC, in particular the radical economic transformation agenda,” he said.
 
Zuma said he had only wanted the ANC to articulate his transgressions and the reasons for its immediate instruction that he vacate office.
 
“This was important in view of the discussions I held with the president of the ANC [Cyril Ramaphosa] and the secretary-general of the party [Ace Magashule] that were aimed at uniting the ANC."

Zuma said there had been agreement that if the need arose for him to vacate the presidency, there would be a period of transition during which he would delegate some of his functions to the deputy president of the country.

Reaction

At a media briefing immediately following the announcement, ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte said the party would tell Zuma what he had done wrong.

Duarte said members of the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) had provided reasons for the recall of Zuma but she would not state what those reasons were.

She added that the ANC extended its gratitude to Zuma "for having served the country in this capacity for the last nine years, particularly for the contribution he has made to progress in improving the lives of ordinary South Africans".

The Democratic Alliance (DA)  welcomed Zuma’s “overdue resignation” and called for him to face the criminal charges still awaiting him before the courts.

“Even in his resignation speech tonight‚ he refused to take any responsibility for his actions‚ and for the harm he caused the country. Such shameless disdain requires a level of pathology that reveals Jacob Zuma’s true nature‚” DA leader Mmusi Maimane.

President Jacob Zuma resigned as leader of South Africa on Feburary 14 2018 during a televised address to the nation.


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