South Africa's governing African National Congress (ANC) has called on
president Thabo Mbeki to resign days after a judge suggested the president had
interfered in a case against party rival, Jacob Zuma.
this month the high court judge dismissed corruption and other charges against
Mr. Zuma, saying there was evidence of political interference in the
accepted the call to resign and, according to his spokesman, will leave the
post once all constitutional requirements have been met.
Mr. zuma is expected to succeed Mr.
Mbeki in scheduled elections next year.
Mduduzi Simon Khumalo is a research
specialist at the Peace and Security Unity with the African Institute of South
Africa. Nightlines Akwei Thompson spoke with him in Pretoria.
“On Monday the ANC National Working
Committee took a decision that they would like him to be relieved of his
duties,” Khumalo said.
He said that
decision was to be ratified by the National Executive Council in meetings held
on Friday and Saturday and “this morning they took the decision that they would
like him to be relieved of his duties.”
Khumalo said that although the constitution
provides that an early election should be held, the ANC will not go that route
for fear that an early election might jeopardize the two-thirds majority they
hold in parliament. Instead, Khumalo thinks the ANC will opt to elect a
caretaker president. “Constitutionally, the Speaker of Parliament must become
the caretaker president or the acting president until elections are held next
year,” he added.