ANC suspends Zuma after rival party launch

South Africa’s former President Jacob Zuma has been suspended from the party he once led, after refusing to vote for it and launching a rival organisation.

The governing African National Congress (ANC) announced its decision on Monday.

“Zuma and others whose conduct is in conflict with our values and principles, will find themselves outside the African National Congress,” said Secretary-General Fikile Mbalula.

Mr Zuma’s nine years as president, from 2009, were dogged by scandal.

An official inquiry said the former president placed the interests of corrupt associates ahead of those of his country, in a process known as “state capture”.

He also faces corruption charges over a 1999 arms deal. He denies wrongdoing in all cases.

Mr Zuma’s new party, uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK), meaning “spear of the nation”, shares a name with the ANC’s former armed wing he once served in.

South Africa’s current President, Cyril Ramaphosa, replaced him in 2018 and promised to clean up government. He now leads an embattled ANC into this year’s general election.

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