Presidency denies reports of Zuma’s 'no-show' at Davos panel discussion

The Presidency says reports of Zuma being a no-show for the Africa Next Challenge debate are incorrect.

President Jacob Zuma addressed a group of South African Ministers and private sector parties at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on 21 January 2016. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

SWITZERLAND - The Presidency has slammed media reports saying that President Jacob Zuma did not turn up for a panel discussion at this year's World Economic Forum in Davos.

A number of media houses reported that forum organisers had informed them that Zuma cancelled at the last minute, leaving the Africa Next Challenge debate without a South African representative.

But according to Zuma's office, panel organisers were informed last week that the president could not attend the event due to schedule clashes.

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The Presidency says reports suggesting Zuma was a 'no-show' are simply incorrect.

A statement goes on to say that the organisers were also informed that Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan was suggested as a replacement.

But according to the forum, a head of state can only be replaced by another head of state.

The message, however, makes no mention of where President Zuma was during the debate.

It's understood Zuma was visiting the Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Löfven, during the time of the debate.

A request by Eyewitness News for an interview with Zuma's office was declined.

Visit the Eyewitness News World Economic Forum 2016 special feature.