'Drop bid for presidency'

ANC president Jacob Zuma should withdraw from the coming presidential race until after his corruption trial, the DA said yesterday.

ANC president Jacob Zuma should withdraw from the coming presidential race until after his corruption trial, the DA said yesterday.

DA leader Helen Zille said in a statement yesterday: "The Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans' Association's threat of revolutionary violence should Jacob Zuma be found guilty of corruption makes his candidacy as president of South Africa untenable.

"Zuma must now put the public interest first and announce his withdrawal from the presidential race until his corruption trial is resolved," Zille said.

Zuma faces charges of racketeering, four charges of corruption, a charge of money laundering and 12 charges of fraud.

"His legal team has brought an application in the Pietermaritzburg high court to have the decision to prosecute him declared unlawful.

"The discourse surrounding Zuma's trial has shifted rapidly from the menacing rhetoric of (ANCYL president) Julius Malema and others, to an all-out declaration of war by former soldiers," she said.

"This is effectively a promise of a military coup if the courts find against Zuma."

Zuma seemed to be "unwilling and incapable" of reining in those threatening violence in his name, she charged.

Zille said Zuma had never publicly stated that he was willing to respect the outcome of the corruption trial.

"The public interest will not be served by a deal or a so-called 'political solution' that gets Zuma off the hook," Zille added. - Sapa

X