South Africa's Ramaphosa says in direct discussions with Zuma over transition

Posted February 09, 2018

Mr Zuma, who is battling corruption allegations, has been in a weakened position since he was replaced as leader of the ANC in December by Cyril Ramaphosa, the deputy president.

The governing ANC party has called a meeting of its top body for Wednesday to decide on Mr Zuma's future. The president of South Africa faces a vote of no confidence on the 22 February, a motion led by the opposition party the Economic Freedom Fighters. We can not condone or allow Zuma to escape accountability for breaking his oath of office and putting his friends and family above the best interests of the people of South Africa.

Another MP said Ramaphosa assured them that Zuma would soon be exiting the highest office in the land but did not give a specific date.

"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".

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"Unfortunately, the longer it drags on, then we can say to Ramaphosa; 'you've pulled the trigger, surely you had a plan for how this was going to turn out'".

Zuma's spokesman Bongani Ngqulunga said the meeting with Zwelithini was "a longstanding courtesy meeting between the President and His Majesty which was initially meant to take place in January but was postponed due to diary challenges on both sides".

The rand, which has tended to strengthen on signs that Zuma could step down before his second term as president ends next year, was firmer on Tuesday.

Emergency party talks were held in Johannesburg on Sunday.

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Ace Magashule, the party's secretary general, told reporters after the meeting that no timeline had been set for concluding talks with Zuma.

Ramaphosa said in a statement he had "constructive" talks with Zuma. The Guptas and Zuma have denied any wrongdoing.

The unit this week has struggled to push beyond last week's rally to 11.8500, a touch off its 2-1/2 year best, with optimism over the speedy removal of Zuma from office waning, leaving the currency open to profit-taking.

The announcement that the ANC's national executive, which has the power to recall the scandal-tainted president, would not meet followed Tuesday's dramatic cancellation of a key Parliament speech by the president. We've had our meetings as cabinet. ANC credibility will be on the line if opposition parties are the ones to initiate the presidents departure and the leading political party would be concerned about its effect on the 2019 presidential elections.

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