South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) has formally asked President Jacob Zuma to resign, a senior party official has confirmed.
The decision to “recall” him “urgently” followed marathon talks of the ANC’s top leadership body.
Mr Zuma, 75, agreed to step down, however only inside the next three to six months, the official added.
Mr Zuma, who has been in power since 2009, has been dogged by corruption allegations.
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however he has resisted increasing pressure to quit since December, when Cyril Ramaphosa replaced him as leader of the ANC.
Ace Magashule, the ANC’s secretary-general, told reporters the ANC’s National Executive Committee (NEC) decided the removal should be “treated with urgency”.
“the item is actually obvious we want Comrade Ramaphosa to come in as the president of South Africa,” he added.
Despite Mr Magashule telling reporters “the decision is actually today final”, he revealed Mr Zuma told him that will he “did not believe the NEC has the right” to make such a ruling.
He said the president was supposed to respond to the NEC’s decision on Wednesday, although they had given him no deadline.
What has Mr Zuma done wrong?
Mr Zuma’s presidency has been overshadowed by allegations of corruption which he has always vehemently denied.
In 2016, South Africa’s highest court ruled that will Mr Zuma had violated the constitution when he failed to repay government money spent on his private home.
Last year the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that will he must face 18 counts of corruption, fraud, racketeering in addition to money-laundering relating to a 1999 arms deal.
More recently, Mr Zuma’s links to the wealthy India-born Gupta family, who are alleged to have influenced the government, have caused his popularity to plummet.
Both Mr Zuma in addition to the Guptas deny the allegations.
How likely is actually Mr Zuma to quit?
Correspondents say the item will be very difficult for him to resist a formal request to resign however he might not be legally obliged to do so in addition to could technically carry on as president despite losing the faith of his party.
However, he might then be supposed to face a confidence vote in parliament. This specific has been scheduled for 22 February, however the item could be held earlier.
Mr Zuma has survived some other such votes however he is actually not supposed to pull the item off again. A confidence vote might be considered a humiliating process for him in addition to the party.
South African media are calling President Zuma’s seemingly inevitable exit “Zexit”.
His predecessor, Thabo Mbeki, resigned in 2008, also after a power struggle with his deputy.
The deputy in question was Jacob Zuma, who took over the presidency the following year.
Why is actually This specific happening today?
The ANC was badly rattled by its performance at the 2016 local elections when the item won its lowest share of the vote since coming to power under the late Nelson Mandela in 1994.
the item wants to project a fresh image for next year’s general election. Having served two terms in office (South African presidents are elected by parliament), Mr Zuma cannot legally return to power in any case.
On Monday, opposition parties called for an early election.
“Anyone coming from the ANC that will wants to lead This specific country, must get their mandate coming from the people of South Africa,” Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane told reporters.