Cape Town - President Jacob Zuma will remain president of the country even after a secret ballot vote on a motion of no confidence, the ANC Youth League said on Monday.
This is according to the league’s secretary Njabulo Nzuza who was part of News24’s Frontline panel discussion on Monday evening, hours after National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete announced her decision to grant MPs permission to conduct the vote via secret ballot.
“It really doesn’t matter whether the vote is secret or not. We trust our members of the Parliament… The motion of confidence will come just like the others,” Nzuza said.
He said the party could not allow itself to be “commandeered” by the opposition on how to correct itself.
“We can’t support things that seek to collapse government. The members of the ANC are not going to vote against the president, when we wake up [on Wednesday] the president will still be president of the country.”
Nzuza was part of a panel which included United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa and SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi discussing the upcoming motion of no confidence in Parliament on Tuesday afternoon and the possibility of Zuma being recalled as president.
Nzuza said the ANC was aware of the problems it was facing as an organisation and that it did not need opposition parties to tell it how to fix those problems.
“Admitting those problems takes us closer to the solution, but we know the source of our problems is not the opposition.”
The call for Zuma's eighth motion of no confidence came after the president reshuffled his Cabinet on March 30, a move that saw then-finance minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas sacked.
Zuma is not the issue
The reshuffle was followed by the economy being downgraded to a sub-investment grade, also known as junk status.
Nzuza insisted that Zuma could not be used as the scapegoat for all that was wrong in the country.
“These are not reasons for the president to go. You can never blame the entire economic [situation] of the country on one person, there’s a variety of issues,” he said.
He added that the ANC still had time to self-correct and to work on the mistakes that the party had made in the past.
Both Holomisa and Vavi had criticised the ruling party for continuing to keep Zuma in his position, at the cost of losing the trust and faith of millions of South Africans who were unemployed and those who had decided not to take part in the local government elections in August.
Nzuza, however, maintained that calls for Zuma to go were all part of a “ploy” to destabilise government.
“The overall ploy here is to remove the ANC from power. Some of the people saying this…it is about them coming into power because they do not support the ANC in running this country.
“The role of the opposition is to assist the ANC in running the country, but they don’t, the only time they will be happy is when they will be running the country.
“The issue is not about President Zuma. It is about collapsing the ANC.”