It is not normal for a society to be this unequal, hence we cannot adopt a classical approach to our challenges, writes Ralph Mathekga.
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The new leadership of the ANC has
to prioritise President Jacob Zuma's exit as the president of the country.
Given the delicate power balance in the party as reflected in the composition
of the newly elected National Executive Committee (NEC), it is important for
all factions that are represented in the NEC to realise that it is in no one's interest
- neither even those of his staunchest allies - for President Jacob Zuma to be
allowed to continue as the president of the country.
It would be a travesty if Zuma
were to deliver the 2018 State of the Nation address, and also be allowed to continue
with the ill-fated court route to challenge Advocate Thuli Madonsela's
recommendations on a state capture investigation.
Reports are coming out that
meetings are planned to negotiate Zuma's exit. What makes the situation more
urgent is that Zuma seems to be willing to go all the way in pushing back
against the court's ruling that he should not be the one appointing the judge
who is to chair the commission of inquiry into state capture.
On another legal front, Zuma is
also pushing back against the court's ruling that his dismissal of former top
prosecutor Mxolisi Nxasana was illegal, and so is his subsequent replacement of
Nxasana by Shaun Abrahams. These two cases show how Zuma has abused his
executive prerogative as a president because of his personal concern that he
might have to answer on charges of corruption, and also his involvement or
complicity in state capture.
Zuma should not be fired or
recalled, he should firstly be allowed to resign peacefully. While the ANC has
no right to offer Zuma a deal that infringes upon the functioning of our
institutions - such as the decisions to prosecute Zuma - members of the party
have to manage Zuma's exit by negotiating with him and making some form of a
Zuma is in Mugabe's situation; he
will try to stay on because he knows and feels that some of those who replace
him and his crew within the ANC are not significantly better than him. He knows
the extent to which ANC members are compromised due to their involvement in corruption.
He will try to play this card. However, he no longer has the powers he had
before the party's contentious elective conference held a week ago in Nasrec.
As to what deal the ANC would
have to offer Zuma; it is entirely up to the party. However, the deal should
not affect the functioning of the criminal justice system in relation to Zuma.
South Africans should not be made
to stand by as their institutions and laws are trampled upon in order to
accommodate Zuma; a problem that the ANC created and repeatedly failed to
correct when given an opportunity to do so.
- Ralph Mathekga is a Fellow at
the SARChI Chair: African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy at the University of
Johannesburg and author of When Zuma Goes.
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