ANC stalwarts, veterans welcome Zuma's resignation

2018-02-15 17:01
Reverend Frank Chikane (File, Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Reverend Frank Chikane (File, Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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Johannesburg – Reverend Frank Chikane has welcomed the resignation of Jacob Zuma as president, stating that the people of South Africa should not be taken for granted.

Chikane was speaking after a meeting of ANC stalwarts and veterans outside St George's Church in Johannesburg on Thursday.

"The resignation of the president was our liberation yesterday (Wednesday)," Chikane said.

He said the corruption and capture of the country over the past five years had been a traumatic time for South Africans, and those who supported the liberation of South Africa from across the continent and abroad.

"The behaviour of the leadership in the ANC in the last five years was traumatic. It had to stop," Chikane said.

Chikane said Zuma's defiant answers during his last live television interview as president on Wednesday, where he repeatedly asked what he had done wrong were a sign that Zuma was not the right person to lead the country.

Embarrassment avoided

"You can't take the people of South Africa for granted... That to me indicates we had the wrong person as the president of the country," he said.

Chikane said the party's stalwarts and veterans couldn't do much beyond laying an official complaint against Zuma.

"Some of the members want to do that," he said.

ALSO READ: ANC alliance finally dislodged president gone wrong - SACP

Snuki Zikalala, president of the ANC Veterans' League, said the stalwarts and veterans of the party were very happy with Zuma's resignation.

"As veterans, we are very happy that the president of the country, who was a member of the ANC who was recalled came to his senses.

"For him to be reluctant to [resign] would be embarrassing for the country, for the ANC and for him. So, we're happy that could be avoided," Zikalala said.

Call for Zuma's suspension from party

He said there were some within the stalwarts and veterans structure who wanted Zuma to be charged for his actions. He was referring to a group of long-serving ANC leaders and members who in 2016 were signatories to the document For the Sake of our Future, through which they expressed their concern at the direction the party was taking under Zuma's leadership.

"Some of them are saying he was ill-disciplined by refusing the recall," he said.

Zikalala said he and all the other members of the ANC Veterans' League wanted to save the party and help revive and grow it ahead of the national elections in 2019.

He said despite some members raising the issue of Zuma being suspended from the party, there had been no formal discussions on that.

Fazel Randera, one of the signatories to the 2016 document, said since last year the position of the stalwarts and veterans group had been clear: Zuma had to step down.

"We were saying the leadership of the ANC was at fault. We laid down a number of issues," Randera said.

"There is a litany of charges that the ANC should be speaking to and the [former] president can't be denied [an opportunity to respond to them]. He has not had his day in court."

Read more on:    anc  |  jacob zuma  |  snuki zikalala  |  frank chikane

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