Now that the governing African National Congress (ANC) party has elected Cyril Ramaphosa its leader, many analysts say that Zuma’s days as South Africa’s leader may be numbered:
The stalwarts and veterans of the ANC have said in their “New Year’s resolutions” that for the party to achieve unity, President Jacob Zuma had to resign as leader of the country.
The stalwarts shared their reflections for the party on the eve of the last day of 2017.
They congratulated Cyril Ramaphosa on his election as president of the ANC, saying they hoped his leadership would be a breath of fresh air. They said he would not have an easy road, given the challenges the ANC faced.
The group said that the unity which was talked about in 2017 needed to become a reality in 2018.
“It cannot be that difficult to see what our country sees is wrong with our movement,” they said.
The stalwarts said the ANC leadership needed to know the days of unacceptable behaviour were over and the president of the country needed to give the new leadership of the ANC the opportunity to prepare for the 2019 elections.
“A starting point and a clear message to the country, would be for our country’s president to voluntarily step down in the interests of country and the African National Congress. If the president really loves the ANC and wants it to remain in power by 2019 he would assist it by handing over the leadership of the country to the newly elected president of the ANC to better prepare for the 2019 elections,” they said.
Removing Zuma would be a risky move because it could split the party.
However, it would not be the first time a South African president has been fired – it happened to Thabo Mbeki in 2008 after he lost the ANC leadership to Mr Zuma.