Global News

South Africa's rand gains on Zuma exit rumours; stocks flat

South Africa's rand gains on Zuma exit rumours; stocks flat

The South Africa rand strengthened on Tuesday after rumours that President Jacob Zuma had stepped down.

The rand weakened in midday trade yesterday to its worst in almost three weeks after the ANC said an early exit for President Jacob Zuma had not been discussed at a party meeting.

Both Mr Zuma and the Guptas deny the allegations.

President Jacob Zuma's statement, issued on the eve of a high-level ruling party meeting where his fate is a certain topic of discussion, said any further delay will make the public doubt the government's resolve to fight graft.

"For Ramaphosa to build on the momentum of his ascendancy to ANC president and boost investor confidence, he will only have a relatively short window to remove Zuma", said Mike Davies, the founder of political-advisory company Kigoda Consulting.

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Earlier in the week, three of the NEC's 86 voting members, who also asked not to be identified, said the matter would be raised.

"Yet‚ despite all of Zuma's indiscretions‚ Ramaphosa has failed to recall him showing that the ANC will not self-correct and that we can only expect more of the same‚" Van Damme asserted. "His hand has been forced", said Mmusi Maimane, the leader of the main opposition Democratic Alliance, reported ABC News. Deputy chief justice Raymond Zondo, selected by the chief justice will head the commission, Zuma said in the statement.

Initially hit by softening demand for emerging market assets as global bond yields picked up, the rand's losses accelerated to a session-low R12.55 shortly after the ANC Secretary-General Ace Magashule told reporters Zuma's removal was not on the agenda of a meeting of the party's top decision-making body.

It also deeply divided the ANC, which has been in power since the end of white minority rule in South Africa in 1994.

Zuma, however, has shown no intentions of resigning.


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