15 February 2018
Jacob Zuma agreed to step down as president after battleing with his own party, Afican National Congress(ANC). The party had sacked him as its head. The opposition party tabled a motion of no confidence. ANC was expected to vote in favour of the motion. Zuma resigned ahead of the parliamentary vote.
Early morning on Wednesday elite police unit has raided the home of wealthy Indian born Guptas family linked to President Jacob Zuma. Three arrests were made and up to seven more people will be arrested by today. Guptas have been accused of using their close friendship with Zuma to wield enormous political influence including ministerial appointments. BBC reported.
The move by the police force added pressure on Zuma. His son, Duduzane, works for the Guptas and could be a possible target of the police investigations. Zuma’s daughter and one of the president’s wives also worked for the Gupta’s firms. The Gupta family own a range of business interests in computing, mining, air travel, energy, technology and media. The three brothers, Atul, Rajesh and Ajay, moved to the country in 1993 from India when the white-minority rule was coming to an end.
Gupta family are alleged to have pocketed millions of dollars Estina dairy farm which was meant to help poor black farmers in the Free State. They also enriched from many government contracts they got because of their connections. It will not be wrong to say that their connection was the main reason for the fall of Zuma. Reuters reported.
Cyril Ramaphosa was elected party president in December. He is expected to be sworn in as the new President. The main task ahead for Ramaphosa is to unite the ANC ahead of the 2019 elections to avoid being forced into a coalition government. This will not be an easy task in a country with 54 million population with unemployment remaining at historical high of 27.7%. The country with vast riches and natural resources has been losing its wealth to wide-spread corruption. This week a court in Durban heard that a businessman gave a bag of currency notes and diamonds in exchange for access to legal documents.