On the 14th of February, South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma declared his resignation in a televised speech to the nation. After being president since 2009, his political party the ANC (African National Congress) asked him to step down or face a vote of “no confidence” in parliament. The deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa who is also the new ANC leader will be taking over as president of South Africa.
In his speech Zuma said, “no life should be lost in my name and also the ANC should never be divided in my name. I have therefore come to the decision to resign as president of the republic with immediate effect,” . He also claimed that he would continue to be a part of the ANC and will always serve the people of South Africa.
The ANC claims that Zuma’s resignation provides assurance to the people of South Africa. In October 2017, the Supreme court of Appeal ruled that Zuma had to face 18 counts of Corruption, Fraud, money laundering and racketeering. This is said to have led to the call for his resignation. Zuma has also been barred for taking part in future elections.
Ramaphosa will be sworn in on the 15th of February, and will be president until the 2019 presidential elections. According to the BBC, he is currently the favorite candidate to win the 2019 elections.