September 22, 2008

S. Africa’s President Resigns

President Thabo Mbeki went on national television Sunday to announce his resignation and deny that he pressured prosecutors to go after rival Jacob Zuma, whose supporters forced the South African leader from office. Mbeki's departure leaves the ruling African National Congress bitterly divided.

- Los Angeles Times

the successor

An interim president, probably parliament speaker Baleka Mbete, is expected to be named this week. ANC's leader, Jacob Zuma, is likely to run for the office in elections scheduled for next year.

the background

Mbeki's opponents in the ANC gained the needed ammunition to drive him from office when a judge, Chris Nicholson, threw out fraud and racketeering charges against Zuma on Sept. 12, saying it appeared he might have been a victim of a political conspiracy in the ANC.

The ruling is being appealed.

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