President Jacob Zuma has refused to heed calls to step down as South African president, denouncing moves by the ruling African Nation Congress (ANC) party to remove him as “very unfair.”
“I find it unfair, very unfair,” Zuma said in his first public remarks, a day after the ANC formally asked him to resign.
During more than a week of negotiations with the ANC’s key decision-making body, Zuma said that “nobody provided the reasons, nobody has been able to provide me with what I have done.”
The ANC had urged Zuma to resign due to a string of corruption allegations.
Zuma denied any wrongdoing on Wednesday.
“There is no problem. There has never been a problem,” he said in the televised remarks.
Earlier in the day police had raided the home of a business family linked to the embattled leader.
Zuma says the ruling ANC has not followed party procedures in trying to unseat him.
The ANC wants parliament to vote on Thursday on a motion of no confidence if he does not resign on Wednesday.
“I need to be furnished on what I’ve done,” Mr Zuma says. “What is this hurry?”
Agents from the Hawks, an elite police investigative unit, earlier entered the compound of the Gupta family in an affluent neighbourhood of Johannesburg.
Three people were arrested in operations at various addresses, the South African Broadcasting Corporation reported.
The family is suspected of using its connections to the president to influence Cabinet appointments and win state contracts, and has been a flashpoint for national anger over corruption in state enterprises during Mr Zuma’s tenure.
Both the Guptas and Mr Zuma say they have done nothing wrong.
ANC Secretary-General Ace Magashule makes a statement after the ruling party said scandal-tainted President Jacob Zuma must leave office .
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is poised to replace Mr Zuma, who could face a motion of no confidence in parliament if he defies his party’s order to step down.
Deputy President and ANC party president Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to take over from Jacob Zuma .
As the Gupta-linked investigation proceeds, Mr Zuma could face corruption charges tied to an arms deal two decades ago.
South Africa’s chief prosecutor is expected to make a decision on whether to prosecute Mr Zuma on the old charges, which were reinstated in 2017 after being thrown out in 2009.
In another scandal, South Africa’s top court ruled in 2016 that Mr Zuma violated the constitution following an investigation of multi million-dollar upgrades to his private home using state funds.
The president paid back some of the money. (dpa/NAN)