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SOUTH African opposition parties vowed to “shut down” the country if their demands for President Jacob Zuma to be replaced are not met.
The calls by the Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) sought to pre-empt ongoing talks between Mr Zuma and his deputy Cyril Ramaphosa on a “transition.”
Mr Ramaphosa was elected president of the ruling ANC at December’s conference, setting him up as the party’s presidential candidate at the May 2019 general election.
EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said yesterday: "It's not just the EFF. We are planning a national shutdown that will be joined by everyone."
EFF leader Julius Malema said on Wednesday the ANC splinter party was "going to the streets because those with power don’t know how to exercise it.”
Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane said later the EFF would write to parliamentary speaker Baleka Mbete demanding an urgent no-confidence vote in Mr Zuma be tabled for Tuesday.
The last such vote failed despite an unprecedented secret ballot.
Meanwhile it emerged ANC Treasurer-General Paul Mashatile had promised mine owners Mr Zuma would be removed.
In his Tuesday night speech to the Cape Town Mining Indaba, released yesterday, he said Wednesday’s ANC executive meeting — later postponed by Mr Ramaphosa — would demand the president’s resignation.
He also claimed he and the other top six ANC officials had dictated appointments to the board of national electricity utility Eskom at a meeting with Mr Zuma on Sunday.
“We gave him the names that we want there and what change we wanted and that is going to happen at all state-owned enterprises,” Mr Mashatile said, potentially writing his own arrest warrant.
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