ANC national chairperson Gwede Mantashe says if President Jacob Zuma does not resign the party will let him face a no-confidence vote in Parliament on his own.
Mantashe was speaking at a mini rally of the ANC’s 106th birthday celebrations at the Msobomvu Community Hall in Butterworth on Tuesday.
“We said he must resign on his own because he is a member of the ANC and we respect him and he is not an enemy of the organisation. But when he refused to resign we decided to apply a rule in the ANC constitution that says the organisation has the authority to deploy you and to recall you,” he said.
Mantashe said recalling Zuma was a political decision.
“We are not fighting with Zuma. All we are saying is that, as an organisation, we deployed him and we are simply recalling him. That is what we are doing,” he said.
The national chairperson intimated that Zuma was ill-disciplined in that he failed to do the simple task of resigning as instructed by his party.
“If you are not disciplined you will defy the decision to recall you and not accept it. Once you resist the decision to recall you by refusing to do [resign], we are going to let you face a vote of no confidence because you don’t respect the organisation and abide by its decisions.
“If you refuse to resign we will let you be eaten by the vultures in the vote of no confidence. So I hope that the man I respect called Mr Zuma will do the right thing and resign with dignity. If he does not he will have to face the vultures on his own in Parliament. We don’t want him to be embarrassed in Parliament,” Mantashe said.
He said secretary-general Ace Magashule and his deputy Jessie Duarte had today given Zuma a letter communicating the ANC national executive committee’s decision to recall him.
Mantashe went on to compare Zuma’s response to that of former President Thabo Mbeki’s when he was recalled by the ruling party. He said Mbeki never resisted the decision, showing that he was a disciplined member of the ANC.
“Mbeki never gave us any problem when we recalled him. He wrote a letter on the same day accepting the decision of the ANC. That resulted in Mbeki earning the respect of ANC structures. Today everybody listens when Thabo speaks, because he was recalled by his organisation and wrote an acceptance letter that day and cleaned up his desk and went home. He never refused to resign. Those are the lessons we must learn” Mantashe said.