A strange illogic drives the Zuma recall!


The Zuma removal call evidences a strange illogic, of many conflicting sides. It brings together recognised contradicting interests that in this season have abandoned their known diverse ideological mandates in pursuit of a common enemy, Jacob Zuma. We see this with business and labour, its also seen in the supposedly contradictions of ideology of a South African Communist Party versus a Democratic Alliance. Ultimately its tangible in some ANC minds who are in sink with Opposition parties.


On one hand we are told Opposition parties want Zuma gone because they are apparently concerned for the interest of an ANC, meaning they want the ANC to remain in power and sees it losing if it allows Zuma to continue as SA president. This illogic parades as sense and has convinced some in the ANC they can agree with their political foes to vote in favour of opposition motions.  It also appears some in the ANC are convinced that that the Opposition has the ANC’s best interest at heart.


On the other hand we are told if the ANC recalls Zuma, it will be able to regain all the votes it lost in 2014 and 2016. This claim is advanced without any true critical engaging. This advanced logic is premised on the claim that the EFF and COPE parties essentially formed in grudge against a Zuma will close shop, re-join the ANC and vote for the ANC come 2019, since the reason for their existence Zuma will be dealt with.


There is simply no empirical evidence for a claim that the EFF as a hitherto 6% trusted voted party would give up its political presence and benefits to re-join the ANC whose demise it has hitherto worked for. Some are deceived to assume the EFF will spare any other leader of the ANC their ontological wrath. It already has warned the newly elected ANC president to ready himself for an onslaught. Don’t be fooled, the EFF will lodge the case Marikana case and it will render Ramaphosa answerable to a court on what it has deemed a massacre.


The illogic further extends to a claim that should Zuma go, the ANC would miraculously do better than the 62,1% attained in 2014. A great deal is made of the shed percentage often without true honesty. A quick glance at ANC elections performance over the period of democratic sojourn mirrored in 5 national elections confirms the ANC in 1994 with Mandela secured 62,7% of the vote. It scored for the two Mbeki terms of 1999 and 2004 respectively with Mbeki 66,4% and 69,7%. It attained in 2009 with Zuma’s first term secured 65,9%. The ANC therefore in elections trust by the popular vote is on average a 65,4% notwithstanding SA as a maturing democracy that may already evidence semblance of voter apathy and other factors attached to growing democracies. While the magical two-thirds majority was attained in 2004 it did not translate to any drastic and or meaningful changes in land and economic ownership for the benefit of the masses.


It is naively in some circles believed that a recall of Zuma will automatically restore public confidence and in magical sense secure ANC greater success at the polls, since he constitutes the ANC’s trust problem. This is despite the proven reality that the South African democratic era in voter patterns attest an entrenched racialized reality with apartheid-defined whites, Coloured, and Indian voters not trusting the ANC to lead as the overall elections results for the five elections show.


It is also conveniently assumed recalling Zuma will absolve those who served with him at both organisational and state level. They believe if blame centred is apportioned to Zuma some will not share in the stigma, and be afforded legitimacy for a new lease of political and economic life. Those who shout and in glaring sense wants to exonerate themselves assumes recalling Zuma will make them overnight trustworthy.


What then is the hidden motive?


Conference concluded and was unequivocal on organisational unity, its conscious mixed bag of leadership in defiance of preferred slates and its fundamental policy direction. Conference’s call for unity is not in a vacuum, its choice against the slate winners-take-it-all dictate, was a conscious and cognisant one. Cognisant of the untold damage and painful divisions the mistake of a 2008 recall of its SA president brought. Conference aware of that wisely chose to steer clear from entertaining a recall because it would be a contradiction to its confirmed unity call.


It can also be deduced that conference was conscious not to inadvertently make the recalling SA presidents a tradition and standard. One is not remonstrating the unity of the ANC is only and uniquely defined in the person of Jacob Zuma, that would be fanning the flames of the personality cult. What I am saying is he cannot be discounted in constituency sense particularly with the recent conference results as tight a race it was and his base an undeniable fact.


Contrary to what we are fed, the recall of Zuma is not in attempt at saving the ANC, it is not in attempt of rescuing the ANC, it is not even in attempt of saving SA for the masses.


It is not even in attempt of dealing with corruption, we know corruption, which must be condemned and never defended by anyone, is conveniently framed in Gupta name. There exists no appetite to really engage the extent of corruption and capture for our democratic sojourn. We must ask why is there no interest in some circles both in and outside the ANC to engage this reality of capture with evergreen contracts of Eskom, and SAA to cite a few.


It also an attempt at recalibrating the international context of a South Africa that under Zuma leadership has opted to move away from the control of the old colonial powers. Removing Zuma, as was the case with Dilma Vana Rousseff of Brazil is therefore a conscious attempt at stifling if not retarding the firm BRICS commitment and leadership thus far shown by this president.


Finally removing Zuma is a conscious attempt at dividing the ANC, because a divided ANC will be incapable to give effect to the Conference policy directives and therefore fail to implement radical socio economic transformation and deal with the land issue.

Political commentator Clyde Ramalaine. PICTURE: Supplied