South African opposition files no-confidence motion against President

While opposition leaders have urged ANC lawmakers to vote according to their conscience in the April 18 vote in the National Assembly, where the ANC has a 62 percent majority, party Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe said Wednesday they won't oppose Zuma.

In the statement, the NWC criticises party members who voiced public criticism of Zuma's controversial cabinet reshuffle.

This comes as the ANC held its closed extended national working committee (NWC) meeting at the party's headquarters in Johannesburg amid divisions in the ruling party over the past two days.

The SACP has now hit back, saying the leak about Zuma's intentions to fire Pravin Gordhan came from the ANC itself.

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He said the 2007 resolution that premiers and mayors should consult ANC leadership before changing their executive was behind the "shortcoming" in managing the reshuffle. "We don't know where it was compiled, that's why we discussed consultation".

"If you're asking if he is here to stay, you are asking a very loaded question".

Mantashe denied that he and the other Zuma critics had been forced to apologise.

The ruling ANC party has backed Zuma, and rejected calls for him to resign.

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Jonas made headlines previous year when he said he had been offered the finance minister's job by members of the Gupta family, Indian businessmen who have close ties with Zuma and have been accused of influence-peddling.

Mantashe had said that he was "uncomfortable" with Zuma's decision‚ which he said was based on a list that had been drawn up "somewhere else".

"We didn't need the downgrade, by the way, if we had just behaved ourselves", Gordhan said on Thursday at a memorial in Cape Town for veteran anti-apartheid stalwart Ahmed Kathrada.

"South Africans can no longer stand on the sidelines and watch President Jacob Zuma ruin our beloved country which we struggled so hard for", they added. "We should not allow inflammatory rhetoric from certain elements, including on social media, to damage our fragile social fabric and turn South Africans against each other".

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(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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