The former president says he does not recognise the current ANC.

Former President Jacob Zuma has announced that he will not be joining other members of the African National Congress (ANC) in campaigning for the party ahead of the 2024 elections.

“It would be a betrayal to campaign for the ANC under Ramaphosa,” he said.

He further stated that he would not be voting for the ANC but for the newly registered uMkhonto Wesizwe party.

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In a statement read by his daughter Dudu Zuma-Sambudla, Zuma said in part: “The ANC has been reduced to an organisation hardly respected by those it sought to liberate. It’s clear they’re disappointed by the party’s conduct under the current leadership.

“For over a century, the ANC leadership had always treated its members and supporters with utmost respect and prioritised listening to them more than listening to themselves. An open channel of communication from the ground up had always been the core practice of the organisation and had helped to maintain a strong connection with the people.

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“A healthy relationship between the leadership of the ANC and its members at all levels demonstrated the character of being an organisation of the people, by the people and for the people. It is for such reasons
that many of us initially joined the ANC, and believed so deeply in its mission that we were prepared to sacrifice our lives. Many indeed paid the supreme sacrifice and lost their lives in the process of fighting for our freedom.”

But the current ANC was not the one he fought for, he said.

Why Zuma is abandoning ANC

During his time at Robben Island, Zuma said that discipline in the ANC was at its highest, something that is not part of the culture under the current leadership.

Zuma emphasised that the ANC of the past was focused on serving its members, not preoccupied with expelling them.

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He listed the appointment of Chief Justice Raymond Zondo as the chair of the Zondo commission, the 2017 Nasrec conference, the July 2021 unrest and the subsequent deaths, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s comment that the ANC was accused number one of corruption, former Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane’s impeachment, and load shedding, which he says could have been avoided through proper appointment procedures, as some of the reasons he would not be campaigning for the party.

Despite all these challenges, Zuma vowed he would die in the ANC and would stay on because he understood the original plans of the organisation.

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“I hold a very deep commitment to the ANC. I will die as a member of the ANC,” he said.

However, he feels it is necessary to “rescue” the ANC from the current leadership.


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