Febrero 19, 2018

South African police raid house of Gupta family

14 Febrero 2018, 06:49 | Crisanna Felipe

Credit Stock

Credit Stock

South Africa's ruling party on Tuesday disowned President Jacob Zuma after sticking with him through years of scandals, ordering him to resign in an attempt to resolve a leadership crisis that has disrupted government business in one of Africa's biggest economies.

An opposition-backed motion of no confidence has been scheduled for February 22, but its sponsors want the vote to be moved up to this week.

It was unclear how Zuma was going to respond to the ANC National Executive Committee's (NEC's) formal recall motion, which was decided in the early hours of Tuesday morning, but he was due to make a statement on Wednesday. He confirmed that he had offered to resign by June if the ANC agreed to a phased transition. The BBC cited local media reports as saying that one of the three Gupta brothers was arrested. Zuma is also implicated in the case.

The EFF has, however, written to the National Assembly Speaker, Baleka Mbete, requesting that Sona be brought forward.

It is unclear whether Zuma is trying to strike an amnesty deal or if he is digging in his heels.

The Hawks raided the family home of businessmen friends of President Jacob Zuma in Johannesburg on Wednesday amid a probe into allegations that the family used their links with the president to win state contracts and influence Cabinet appointments. Two others are expected to hand themselves in, police said.

The Guptas are accused by the public anti-graft watchdog of using their friendship with Zuma to influence policy and amass wealth.

"We made a decision to recall Zuma", the source said.

The power struggle over his departure put him on a collision course with Cyril Ramaphosa, his expected successor, the new head of the African National Congress.

The local currency - which held steady in the high R11.90s to the greenback for most of the trading day Monday, on the back of dollar weakness and signs of Zuma's imminent departure - had strengthened nearly 1% to trade at R11.88 to the dollar by 16:30 on Monday.

Why is President Zuma under pressure?

"It is obvious we want Comrade Ramaphosa to come in as the president of South Africa", he added. Although he has consistently denied the charges, prosecutors are gearing up to reinstate them.

The president has been discredited by corruption scandals but has been clinging onto power. The ANC wants parliament to vote Thursday on a motion of no confidence if he doesn't resign Wednesday.

"Whilst we see potential for a continued drop in the pair to 11.3909 if it is all wrapped up this week, broadly speaking all of the good news is priced-in given the ZAR's near 20 percent gain versus the dollar since Ramaphosa was voted as leader", said emerging markets analyst at Informa Christopher Shiells.

"The NEC firmly believes that this situation requires us to act with urgency in order to steer our country towards greater levels of unity, renewal and hope", Magashule said.

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