Speaking at the annual conference of the Black Management Forum in Midrand on Wednesday, African National Congress (ANC) secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said the growing calls for President Zuma to resign must be silenced, because firing Zuma will not solve the problems rocking the ANC and the country at large.
According to Mantashe, many believed that to recall Zuma as ANC President and South Africa’s President will help rebuild the ruling party. But doing so will further crash the floundering party, he argued.
Although the ANC performed below expectation in the local government election, he said the party has launched a post-election analysis – which seeks to spot out areas where the party went wrong and possible ways of improvement.
“Many people thought that the only thing to do was to fire Jacob Zuma rather than doing a detailed analysis. We’re not dealing with service delivery problems, but rather with a trust deficit.”
He also told delegates at the Black Management Forum that the ANC is not a bunch of brainless people because the party is tackling trust deficit – which led to the party losing three pivotal metros on August 3.
“People just don’t trust you, they don’t have confidence in you. And when you have lost ground, 8 percent in the election, everybody believes that the ANC is a bunch of brainless people. No, it can’t be,” Mantashe lamented.
Opposition parties and Zuma’s detractors have intensified calls for him to step down from power. This comes after the president was found guilty of many charges levelled against him – including defying Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s recommendations on his Nkandla homestead.
In addition to his woes, Zuma is also battling with the spy tape case. The long-running case was sponsored by the Democratic Alliance.
However, unfazed by criticism from detractors, president Zuma has vowed to complete his tenure come rain or shine. He also earned the support of most top members of his party, including Gwede Mantashe – who is one of his most vocal supporters.