Zuma's Exit: ANC wants the South African president gone

President Jacob Zuma expected exit (called "Zexit" in South African Media) draws even closer as the National Executives of the African National Congress (ANC), Zuma's party decided to remove Zuma from office. 

The decision came after 13 hours deliberation that continued into the early hours of Tuesday. Zuma's deputy and Head of the ANC, Cyril Ramaphosa, is reported to have traveled
to Zuma's residence to convey the message from the deliberations asking the president to resign within 48 hours. Though the ANC has not officially confirmed its plans, the party is expected to hold a media briefing on Tuesday afternoon to announce the result of Monday's deliberation.

It is speculated that Zuma might defy the party wishes. If he does, this will lead to a vote of confidence in parliament which the party are desperately trying to avoid as it will further decrease the party's popularity.

Zuma has faced several vote of confidence in parliament and has always scaled through but, might not be able to do anything about it this time around. A party source told Reuters that Zuma has made it clear he was not going to resign after the one-on-one meeting with Ramaphosa.

“Cyril went to speak with him,” the source said, adding that when Ramaphosa returned to the ANC meeting in a Pretoria hotel, the discussions were “tense and difficult”.

“We decided to recall Zuma. He hasn’t been told yet,” the source said.

Since 2009, when Zuma took over from Thabo Mbeki, whom he forced out in similar fashion, has faced corruption allegations, including links to the wealthy India-born Gupta family, who are alleged to have influenced the government. Mr. Zuma and the Guptas vehemently denied the allegations.

Zuma still retains a hard core of faithful inside the ANC and in the rural heartlands of his native KwaZulu-Natal province, accounting for the careful steps being threaded by Ramaphosa in these proceedings. 

With elections scheduled for next year, the ANC is project a new image following its poor performance at the 2016 local elections when it won its lowest share of the vote since coming to power under the late Nelson Mandela in 1994.

Opposition leaders are looking to capitalize on the ANC troubles and on Monday made calls for an early election. Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane told reporters that "Anyone from the ANC that wants to lead this country, must get their mandate from the people of South Africa," 

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