Zuma Wants Dlamini-Zuma As Interim President If He Resigns

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa talks to his deputy DD Mabuza and ANC Treasure General Paul Mashatile. File

Several ANC insiders familiar with negotiations on Zuma's future told the Mail and Guardian that one of the key requirements would be that ANC MP Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma takes over as the country's interim president after he steps down.

The beleaguered President also wants surety that some of his key Cabinet appointments - including the recent reshuffling of David Mahlobo to the Energy ministry and Bongani Bongo, who has allegations of corruption hanging over his head, to Minister of State Security.

Tens of thousands of people are expected to attend the governing party's birthday celebrations, with Ramaphosa delivering the annual January 8 statement that sets the tone for the party for the year ahead.

Earlier this week, newly elected secretary general Ace Magashule did not address the question of whether Dlamini-Zuma should become the interim president, but stressed she played a pivotal role in uniting the ANC.

Last week, The Star reported that Zuma had been given an ultimatum by Ramaphosa supporters in the NEC, that he should either resign before this week's NEC meeting or face a motion of no confidence against him.

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The issue was however not discussed at the first NEC meeting held on Wednesday and may only feature at the next NEC meeting next week.

ANC NEC members who spoke to the newspaper on condition of anonymity says the talks have now ground to a halt.

The rumour comes as there are growing calls for Zuma to be recalled as state president. "There is no substance that the former AU Chairperson will be the president", Magashule added.

ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa reportedly said the ANC was aware of discussions between Zuma and Ramaphosa about "how to we ensure Luthuli House remains a centre of power without undermining the office of the president of the republic", but said he knew nothing of Zuma's reported conditions.

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