South Africa’s ruling ANC party is expected to order President Jacob Zuma to resign as president on Monday or face a no-confidence vote in parliament that he would almost certainly lose.
A special meeting of the African National Congress’s national executive committee was convened when it became clear that nearly five days of talks between Zuma and the deputy president, Cyril Ramaphosa had failed.
In December, the African National Congress already replaced Zuma as head of the party with Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
The move signals that Ramaphosa will be the party's presidential candidate in 2019.
A central ANC member alleged that Zuma has humiliated the ANC enough. "We must end this thing on Monday.”
“Obviously we have reached the end of the road with the man – we will recall him,” he said using a technical term for the process of ordering an ANC official to leave their post.
According to ANC rules, all members, including elected officials, fulfil their functions according to the will of the party.
Some global news agencies said, Zuma has overseen a tumultuous nine years in power marked by economic decline and faces multiple charges of corruption.
The ANC, in power since the racist apartheid regime came to an end in 1994, has been thrown into crisis by an increasingly chaotic transfer of power from the incumbent president to his deputy and rival.
Ramaphosa addressed the launch of year-long celebrations on Sunday in Cape Town to mark 100 years since the birth of the former president Nelson Mandela.
In the speech, Ramaphosa did not directly mention Zuma but spoke of “discussions around the transition to a new administration and specifically to resolve the issues of the position of the president of the republic”.
“The NEC will be meeting tomorrow (Monday) to discuss this very matter and because our people want this matter to be finalised, the NEC will be doing precisely that. Comrades ... we know you want closure,” the 68-year-old labour leader turned tycoon said.
Analysts say the uncertainty is damaging the ANC and has exposed deep rifts within the party.
Ramaphosa, who won a bitterly fought internal election to become party president, has the support of just over half the members of its top decision-making body.
Zuma retains significant support in the party’s youth and women’s leagues, as well as at local level in some provinces.