Cape Town - ANC treasurer-general Paul Mashatile revealed that President Jacob Zuma was prepared to go through a motion of no confidence vote in the National Assembly or even impeachment proceedings.
This emerged after a recording of Mashatile addressing investors at the Mining Indaba on Tuesday night was leaked on social media.
Mashatile divulged details of a meeting the ANC top six leadership held with Zuma on Sunday. He claimed that the group tried to persuade Zuma to go, but the president refused.
"We were saying to President Zuma on Sunday that we don't want two centres of power, we want president Ramaphosa to take control not only of the ANC, but also the affairs of the state. And we were very clear about it”.
“President Zuma basically said to us: 'I'm not going anywhere, I'm not convinced by you guys so I’m not going to resign. You can go back and report to your national working committee and the NEC that I said I’m not resigning’,” Mashatile said.
In the recording, Mashatile also assured investors that the buck stops with Ramaphosa and that the future was bright.
“The president of the republic must give way to the new leadership, we have been elected by conference and we don't take kindly to being told by the one who is deployed what to do. He can't tell us what to do,” he said.
Listen to the recording
“Yes a motion of no confidence will affect president Zuma, an impeachment will affect president Zuma personally. He is prepared to go through that but we (ANC) are not. And we made it clear to him.
“Our view is that if the president does not want to resign, for whatever reason, we have a party to run that is going to be very soon in an election campaign and we don't want to be dealing with other problems. We have too many of our problems. What we want to do is ensure that we are not involved in motions of no confidence or impeachments that will affect our party,” Mashatile said.
But the NEC meeting (scheduled for Wednesday), which Mashatile assured investors was being held to recall Zuma was called off at the last minute on Tuesday. The state of the nation address which Zuma was scheduled to deliver today was also postponed on Tuesday.
In a statement, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa said the reasons for the postponements was to begin direct discussions with Zuma on the transition and matters relating to his position as the president of the republic.
In another statement, Ramaphosa on Wednesday reassured South Africans that discussions with Zuma were a constructive process that offered the greatest opportunity to conclude the matter without discord or division.
“Throughout this process, I am guided by the principle that the interests and needs of the South African people are paramount,” Ramaphosa said.
ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe did not respond to questions sent to him on Thursday morning.