A motion of no confidence was tabled against President Jacob Zuma at the ANC’s National Executive Committee meeting outside Pretoria last night. Picture: Reuters/Rogan Ward

Pretoria – A motion of no confidence was tabled against President Jacob Zuma at the ANC’s National Executive Committee meeting outside Pretoria on Saturday night.

This after Gwede Mantashe, the secretary-general of the organisation, had said earlier during a briefing to journalists that no such motion had been tabled.

The motion was tabled during a heated discussion, Independent Media has been told.

Independent Media understands it was tabled by ANC policy expert Joel Netshitenzhe.

The debate on the motion is expected to continue on Sunday.

Sources said some NEC members had already spoken for and against the motion, and that the list of other NEC members would continue.

An ex officio NEC member confirmed that a motion against Zuma to step down had indeed been tabled and discussed at the meeting, held at the St George's Hotel in Irene outside Pretoria.

Another source said on Saturday night: "Chief, the motion will not succeed. People just want to divide the ANC. There are many people who are still going to speak tomorrow (Sunday). I don't think the ANC will allow the NEC to leave the meeting divided. In fact, I don't think the motion will fly."

The high-ranking party leader claimed there was no "appetite" for the motion, even from the people who had spoken in support of it.

He said Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi and his deputy Joe Phaahla, former tourism Minister Derek Hanekom, and Susan van der Merwe supported the motion for Zuma to step down.

"The motion was not even mentioned in the political report or in the national working committee," the source said.

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Political Bureau