Zikalala reaffirms his allegiance to Jacob Zuma in outgoing address

play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
Sihle Zikalala.
Sihle Zikalala.
  • Sihle Zikalala reaffirmed his support for Jacob Zuma when he announced his resignation on Friday.
  • He said there was a "deceptive narrative" which suggested he had aligned himself with Cyril Ramaphosa.
  • Working with Ramaphosa was part of the tradition of the ANC, he said in his final speech as premier.

Sihle Zikalala aligned himself to former president Jacob Zuma in his final speech as premier of KwaZulu-Natal on Friday.

"At a political level, there are those who have accused us of betraying former president Jacob Zuma. I wish to make it clear that I have supported him from 14 June 2005 until today. I supported him as a leader and someone who sacrificed his life for South Africa to be liberated," he said.

ANALYSIS | ANC policy conference: Taking the party's temperature

Zikalala offered his resignation to the ANC's provincial executive  committee (PEC) on Thursday.

The party accepted it on Friday.

In the same statement, the PEC said it had communicated with ANC national officials - and it had submitted Nomusa Dube-Ncube, Amanda Bani and Mbali Frazer as candidates for premier.

They are to be interviewed on Saturday, with the preferred candidate set to become the first female premier in KwaZulu-Natal.

At his final press briefing as premier, Zikalala cemented his allegiance to Zuma, saying his "support has never been personal, but always organisational".

"At no point have I ever tried to get a position through being associated with him. Equally, I have never badmouthed others because they did not support him."

He said there was a "deceptive narrative", which had accused him of aligning himself to President Cyril Ramaphosa.

"It is the tradition of the ANC that dictates that members must always accept and work with the elected leadership, whether they have supported the election of that leadership or not.

"The ANC's principles of organisation, democracy and discipline further underline that leaders must lead all members with the same and equal treatment. This is key to ensure unity and cohesion of the ANC."

READ | Ramaphosa appeared before the ANC's integrity commission, says Kodwa

Zikalala said his decision to resign was not because he was "pushed by the new leadership", but "because of the narrative peddled against me". 

He did not say exactly what the narrative against him was.

"It has been my revolutionary teaching that a revolutionary duty is served not by allowing personal desires, but by serving the organisation and the masses it is leading."

Zikalala said he left government "with no cloud or any allegation".

"And I hope, as cadres, we will preserve clean government, which focuses on the emancipation of the people.

AS IT HAPPENED | 'The ANC is unstoppable', says Ramaphosa in closing party conference

"As I alluded earlier, cadres of the revolutionary movement should consciously avoid becoming the centre of the problem or anything that hinders the progress of the revolution."

Zikalala said the ANC was more united now than it was between 2015 to 2017.

"The journey we traversed from 2018 to the ANC 9th Provincial Conference was not easy, but it managed to re-integrate all members of the organisation into one ANC.

"I have no doubt there is a solid foundation upon which the elected leadership will continue to build on and cement the unity of the ANC and that of the society."

Zikalala leaves his office after being heckled during recent public events, including the provincial elective conference. He also failed to make it on to the party's 35-member PEC.

He said that, despite his resignation, he would retain his position in the KZN legislature as an MPL. 

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Zama zama crackdown: What are your thoughts on West Village residents taking the law into their own hands?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Authorities should bring in the army already
11% - 1891 votes
Illegal miners can't be scapegoated for all crime
49% - 8724 votes
What else did we expect without no proper policing
36% - 6445 votes
Vigilante groups are also part of the problem
4% - 629 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.