The National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) has reiterated its call for Jacob Zuma to step down as state president.
The union’s secretary-general‚ Bereng Soke‚ however‚ said Nehawu was not tabling a motion of no confidence‚ but rather asking Zuma to do the right thing.
This was despite the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) last month deciding not to make such a call publicly but to rather engage the African National Congress (ANC) on the matter.
Nehawu on Thursday said it would continue to lobby Cosatu to take the same stance as it in terms of Zuma’s future as country president.
Nehawu is the trade union federation’s biggest affiliate and was‚ once upon a time‚ one of Zuma’s biggest supporters.
The union was one of the first bodies within the tripartite alliance to make such a call.
“The CEC (central executive committee)‚ as the highest structure between congresses‚ reaffirms the union’s call on comrade Jacob Zuma to take the honourable and courageous decision in the interest of the ANC and our people by resigning as president of South Africa‚” Soke said.
“We didn’t call for a vote of no confidence in the president… our message has been directed to the president that he resign as state president.”
Zuma has been losing support within the alliance and the ANC itself.
At the recent three-day ANC national executive committee meeting‚ a proposal that Zuma step down as state president was tabled. This proposal was‚ however‚ defeated.
Nehawu on Thursday also reiterated the decision taken by Cosatu to support Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa as the next leader of the ANC.
The ANC has called on its alliance partners and leagues to desist from speaking about the succession debate.
Soke said Nehawu was just expressing its view and would be ready to engage on the matter when the ANC opened the debate.