Analyst: Zuma likely to survive latest push to have him removed

Lesiba Teffo says the ANC must make an effort to repair its damaged image soon or there will be consequences come elections 2019.

FILE: President Jacob Zuma responding to questions in Parliament on 23 November 2016. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG – With more details expected to emerge today on President Jacob Zuma’s fate, political analyst Lesiba Teffo says the president is likely to survive the latest push to have him removed.

This is the first time the African National Congress (ANC)’s National Executive Committee (NEC) has questioned Zuma’s fitness to hold office after Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom tabled a motion of no confidence in the president.

It’s expected that the outcomes of the meeting will be made public this week.

Teffo says if the ruling party does not make an effort to repair its damaged image soon it will have dire consequences for the 2019 elections.

He says most members on the current ANC NEC are likely to place their personal careers first for the sake of keeping their jobs and livelihoods.

“Once a liberation movement reaches this stage it’s almost impossible to redeem itself. It will have to give way for five years or 10 years and at least transform itself and come back. So there are those who are saying, in any event, we’re on our way out, let’s go down with our man.”

'THANK ZUMA FOR THE WORK HE'S DONE'

Meanwhile, ANC struggle stalwart Ahmed Kathrada says he supports any call for President Zuma to step down.

Earlier this year, Kathrada penned what he called an agonising letter, asking Zuma to step down after the Constitutional Court ruling over Nkandla.

Kathrada says it’s time to thank Zuma for the work he’s done in the ANC.

“Well, I think I was among the very first some months ago when I wrote an open letter to the president to ask him to stand down. So I welcome every other move by individuals and organisations to appeal to the president to thank him very much for what he has done, for a time has come for him to step down.”

'IN THE BEST INTEREST OF SA'

At the same time, Save South Africa convener Sipho Pityana says the continued tenure of Zuma will not only hurt the ANC , but also puts the entire country at risk.

Pityana says Zuma stepping down would be in the best interest of the country.

“There is a greater risk to the country that comes with the continued presidency of Jacob Zuma that could hurt the ANC as well.”

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)