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Mbeki: I still chat to Zuma

2010-01-30 22:36

Johannesburg - Former president Thabo Mbeki on Saturday said that he was still in contact with President Jacob Zuma, engaging in the country's political activities.

Speaking in an interview on SABC News said that his handling of his recall as president of the country in 2008 was in the best interest of the republic.

"I am in contact with the President, president of the ANC and President of the Republic [of South Africa] comrade Jacob Zuma in terms of engagement in political activities in the country," he said.

"I've said this before that I think it is better for everybody, indeed that I handled that matter [his recall] in a sensitive way so that we don't do things which might destabilise [country] or anything like that."

The ANC national executive committee recalled Mbeki from office before his term could expire, Vice-President Kgalema Mothlanthe took over as interim president between September 2008 and the April 2009 general elections.

Resignations

He was fired following Pietermaritzburg High Court Judge Chris Nicholson's ruling that Mbeki may have been involved in a political conspiracy against Zuma.

The party had said that his recall was "an effort to heal and unite the African National Congress".

Mbeki's recall was followed by numerous resignations by some of the ANC's heavy weights including Mosiuoa "Terror" Lekota, former Vice-president Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuka and former Gauteng Premier Mbazima and others, who later formed their own political party, Congress of the People (Cope).

Speculation was rife that Mbeki was behind the founding of Cope which promised to become a major opposition to the ruling party.