Embattled South African President Jacob Zuma resigns

Jacob Zuma.
(Image credit: PHILL MAGAKOE/AFP/Getty Images)

South African President Jacob Zuma announced his resignation Wednesday in a nationally televised speech. Zuma has been at the center of several scandals during his nine-year tenure. As The New York Times says:

Influence-peddling in his administration was so widespread, according to the nation's former public protector, that it became a form of state capture in which Mr. Zuma's business partners or friends influenced government decisions in their personal interest.Now, his departure as president leaves South Africa with a disillusioned electorate, a weakened economy, and a tarnished image in the rest of Africa. [The New York Times]

On Monday, the leadership of Zuma's party, the African National Congress, called for his resignation. Hours before he resigned, Zuma said such calls were "unfair," but after the ANC announced that it would move to hold a "no-confidence" vote against him in parliament, Zuma acquiesced to his party's demand, saying: "The ANC should never be divided in my name. I have therefore come to the decision to resign as the president of the republic with immediate effect."

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Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to replace Zuma until the country's National Assembly votes on a replacement.

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