South African Parliament Announces Debate Against President

African National Congress Secretary General Ace Magashule in Limpopo on 3 February 2018 in Limpopo before a meeting with Vhavenda traditional leaders

The country's deputy president, Cyril Ramaphosa, was elected as ANC leader in December, defeating Zuma's preferred candidate, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.

The ANC did not say what had been decided at the meeting between Mr Zuma and the party's "top six" leadership team at Mr Zuma's home in Pretoria, but it summoned its National Working Committee (NWC) to an urgent meeting on Monday afternoon (local time).

In a letter to the EFF leader Julius Malema‚ Mbete had informed that "the determination had taken into account the programme of the National Assembly‚ including the state of the nation address‚ debate on the address‚ the president's reply to the debate and the tabling of the national budget on February 21".

Zuma's prolonged stay at the Union Buildings is seen by some as detrimental to uniting the party ahead of the crucial 2019 general elections.

Zuma narrowly survived a no-confidence vote in August, when some ANC lawmakers voted with the opposition.




Sources said this was to help avoid accusations of conflict of interest being levelled against Ramaphosa because he was expected to take over from Zuma as soon as Zuma stepped down. "The ANC top six have held them at president Zuma's guesthouse".

Zuma (75) is battling several corruption allegations.

Another opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), had lobbied speaker Mbete to postpone the state of the nation address until Zuma had been removed from office.

In a related development, a senior ruling African National Congress official has also called for Zuma to step down amid a slew of corruption charges.

These include‚ among others‚ surveillance of members of parliament‚ Zuma's call that the most recent motion of no confidence‚ in which several ANC MPs voted for his removal‚ be done by an open ballot and Friday's threat of a civil war by the "Hands Off Zuma" campaign - led by Black First Land First and Unemployed People's Trust.

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