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South African President Cyril Ramaphosa To Face Impeachment

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was set to address the nation on Thursday evening, with initial reports stating that he was going to resign. Though as the time arrived for Ramaphosa’s address the people of South Africa were made aware that no such address would take place as it was put on hold.

Ramaphosa was expected to resign not only as the President of South Africa but also as the president of the ANC making him ineligible for re-election in just over two weeks. This comes after divisions had started to arise within the ANC party.

Moreover, Ramaphosa’s resignation would have seen Deputy President David Mabuza, step in as acting president until the Parliament votes for a new president. It is expected that whoever is elected as the next ANC president in mid-December will be sworn in by the end of the month.

Ramaphosa has come under intense scrutiny after becoming entangled in one of the biggest corruption scandals in South Africa. After it was reported that $4 million had been stolen from the President’s Phala Phala farm two years ago.

The money was allegedly stuffed in the cushions of Ramphosa’s couch. The scandal Known as ‘farm gate’ was brought to light after former spy chief, Arthur Fraser, accused Ramaphosa of trying to cover up the theft.

Ramaphosa had initially denied the allegation but soon confirmed the theft, though he claimed it was a much smaller amount than $4 million saying it was $580,000 and alleged the money was from selling buffalo. 

After an independent investigation, Ramaphosa was accused of having allegedly tried to cover up the robbery and was alleged to have asked Namibia’s President to extradite the suspects who had fled to Namibia and are of Namibian descent. It was also alleged that Ramaphosa had asked his Namibian counterpart to keep quiet about the arrests.

Moreover, the President wrote a letter to the independent panel’s report stating, "I did not 'hunt' for the perpetrators of the theft, as alleged, nor did I give any instructions for this to take place."

This led the country's parliament to discuss whether they should launch official impeachment proceedings, the president would need to be found guilty of misconduct, abuse of power, and violating the constitution for him to be impeached.

However, on Wednesday, Ramaphosa stated, "I have endeavored, throughout my tenure as president, not only to abide by my oath but to set an example of respect for the Constitution, its institutions, for due process and the law… I categorically deny that I have violated this oath in any way, and I also deny that I am guilty of any of the allegations against me."

Ramaphosa was elected as President of South Africa in 2018 and rose to power on an anti-corruption platform after former president Jacob Zuma was sentenced to 15 months in prison for failing to appear in court on criminal corruption charges.

As of yet all attempts to hold hearings on Ramphosa’s future have continuously been pushed back and only time will tell what lies ahead when it comes to the future of South Africa, as more information is yet to unravel regarding the future of Cyril Ramaphosa’s presidency. 

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Tags: Africa #resignation #president #South #impeachment


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