President Jacob Zuma was implicated in the recently released State Capture report which was compiled from the results of investigations carried out by former anti-corruption maven, Thuli Mandelosa, and as a result, a no-confidence vote lies in his very near future.
Zuma came into power in 2009 under the ruling Africa National Congress (ANC) but has continuously been implicated in controversy after controversy that have led the people to agitate for his impeachment.
He now faces a no-confidence vote in parliament on Thursday after the Democratic Alliance, the main opposition party, tabled the request accusing him of wreaking “havoc on our [SA’s] infant democracy”. The party said in a statement that;
“President Zuma’s brand of corruption, economic mismanagement and lies can no longer continue to exist alongside the project of building a better South Africa.”
This particular no-confidence vote will be the third of that Jacob Zuma will face in under a year. The first two had, however, been beaten quite easily by the President with the support of ANC bigwigs who are a majority in the parliament.
ANC leadership has again scoffed at the looming no-confidence vote. They describe it as “ritualistic” and “founded on spurious allegations and narrow political motives”. Although, they may feel that way, an increasing number of anti-apartheid veterans, ANC activists, trade unions, civil groups and business leaders have called for Zuma to resign.
Despite the increasing cries which even culminated in a statewide protest the day after the State Capture report was released to the public, a Wits University professor, Patrick Bond, says that Thursday’s vote in parliament poses no threat to Zuma. He gives his reason for that conclusion to be; “The key people in the ANC are very supportive of Zuma.”
If there is one thing the recently concluded American elections has shown the world, however, it is that absolute confidence in a vote can be very disappointing and even the most ardent Zuma supporters must admit that he has made some serious mistakes. Will he survive the people’s anger a third time? It is left to see.
When Zuma does leave office however, whether a no-confidence vote eventually pushes him out or he reaches the end of his term in 2019, the three leading possible successors are his ex-wife African Union chief Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and ANC treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize.