Reports claim that high-level officials are engaged in ‘secret’ talks to reach a deal for an early exit for President Jacob Zuma.
The negotiating is not being done by the people you might think. The reports that it is Zuma’s allies – including new secretary-general Ace Magashule and Fikile Mbalula – who are trying to broker the deal.
The report states that a meeting could take place after Christmas and that the issue could be raised early January – when the new NEC is due to hold its first meeting.
Zuma’s seeming defiance on the #State Capture inquiry has added fuel to the fire. Last week, he said he would appeal against a judgment by the High Court in Pretoria that ordered him to establish a commission of inquiry into state capture.
At the recent ANC Conference, where Cyril Ramaphosa was elected new president of the ANC and the party resolved to set up the state capture inquiry speedily. Appealing and delaying isn’t exactly helping with this resolution….
But, according to the report in the Sunday Times, while Zuma’s allies might be looking for a way to cushion his fall, negotiating amnesty under South African law is pretty much non-existent pre-trial. For any sort of deal to be reached, JZ might have to admit he actually did something wrong.
There is precedent for recalling the president of the country following a national conference. Remeber Thabo Mbeki? However, Mbeki resigned before the recall was ratified in parliament. Whether Zuma will do the same if he is recalled is another matter. The political landscape is awash with complications right now.