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Former Wits SRC President Mcebo Dlamini. Picture Credit: Gallo Images
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president says goodbye on sabc

By unknown | Sep 22, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

I have no doubt that you are aware of the announcement made [on Saturday] by the National Executive Committee of the ANC with regard to the position of the President of the Republic.

I have no doubt that you are aware of the announcement made [on Saturday] by the National Executive Committee of the ANC with regard to the position of the President of the Republic.

Accordingly, I would like to take this opportunity to inform the nation that today [Sunday] I handed a letter to the Speaker of the National Assembly, the Honourable Baleka Mbete, to tender my resignation from the high position of President of the Republic of South Africa, effective from the day that will be determined by the National Assembly.

Fellow South Africans, since the attainment of our freedom in 1994, we have acted consistently to respect and defend the independence of the judiciary. For this reason our successive governments have honoured all judicial decisions, including those that went against the Executive.

This did not mean that the Executive did not at times have strong views which we would have publicly pronounced upon.

The central approach we adopted has always been to defend the judiciary.

Indeed, on the infrequent instances when we have publicly expressed views contrary to those of the judiciary, we have done so mindful of the need to protect its integrity.

Consistent with this practice, I would like to restate the position of Cabinet on the inferences made by the Honourable Judge Chris Nicholson that the President and Cabinet have interfered in the work the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA). Again I would like to state this categorically that we have never done this, and therefore never compromised the right of the National Prosecuting Authority to decide whom it wished to prosecute or not to prosecute.

This applies equally to the painful matter relating to the court proceedings against the President of the ANC, Comrade Jacob Zuma.

More generally, I would like to assure the nation that our successive governments since 1994 have never acted in any manner intended wilfully to violate the Constitution and the law. We have always sought to respect the solemn Oath of Office each one of us made in front of the Chief Justice and other judges, and have always been conscious of the fact that the legal order that governs our country was achieved through the sacrifices made by countless numbers of our people, which included death.

In this context it is most unfortunate that gratuitous suggestions have been made seeking to impugn the integrity of those of us who have been privileged to serve in our country's National Executive.

Compatriots, again, as you know, we have often pointed to the fact that our liberation movement has always been pan-African in its outlook and therefore that we have an obligation to contribute to the renaissance of the African continent.

In the short years since our freedom, as South Africans we have done what we could to make our humble contribution to the regeneration of our continent.

We have devoted time and resources to the task of achieving the Renaissance of Africa because this is what has informed generations of our liberators, even before the ANC was formed in 1912. We have done this fully understanding that our country shares a common destiny with the rest of our Continent.

I therefore thank the many dedicated compatriots - men and women - who have made it possible for us to contribute to the resolution of conflicts and the strengthening of democracy in a number of countries. We have also done this work conscious of our responsibilities as a State Member of both SADC and the African Union.

I would like to thank my colleagues, the many Heads of State and Government on the African continent whose abiding vision is that Africa must be free; that all our countries, individually and collectively should become democratic, developed and prosperous, and that Africa must unite. These African patriots know as I do that Africa and Africans will not and must not be the wretched of the earth in perpetuity.

Similarly we have worked to contribute to the achievement of the aspirations of the countries and peoples of the South.

Accordingly, I depart the Office of President of South Africa knowing that this country has many men and women who have dedicated their lives to ensure that South Africa, Africa and the countries of the South will, in time, manage to ensure a better world for all of humanity.

I am convinced that the incoming administration will better the work done during the past 14-and-half years so that poverty, underdevelopment, unemployment, illiteracy, challenges of health, crime and corruption will cease to define the lives of many of our people.

I have received many messages from South Africans, from all walks of life, through e-mails, telephonically and through cell phone text messages as well as those conveyed through my colleagues. I thank all of you, fellow South Africans, for these messages.

To everyone, and responding to these messages, I would like to say that gloom and despondency have never defeated adversity. Trying times need courage and resilience. Our strength as a people is not tested during the best of times. As we said before, we should never become despondent because the weather is bad nor should we turn triumphalist because the sun shines.

For South Africa to succeed there is more work to be done and I trust that we will continue to strive to act in unity to accelerate the advance towards the achievement of our shared national goals.


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