Rand loses footing after Zuma recall

A picture illustration shows a South African two Rand coin April 4, 2017.

Most South Africans are broke by mid-month, according to a survey.

Reuters/Thomas White/Illustration

JOHANNESBURG - The rand slipped on Tuesday afternoon‚ reflecting disappointment in the ANC’s media briefing on President Jacob Zuma‚ which analysts described as ambiguous.

The governing party officially confirmed that it had recalled Zuma during its national executive committee meeting (NEC)‚ which was concluded in the early hours of Tuesday.

“Initial feelings are that the market is a bit disappointed due to ambiguity in the stance of the NEC,” said Ashley Dickinson‚ head of fixed-income dealing Sasfin Wealth.

“Also we get a sense that the ‘ex’ president can still cling to power and has had too much wiggle room afforded him by the executive. We are concerned that Zuma might still have an ace up his sleeve in terms of ‘dirt’ on his detractors.”

READ: 5 key moments from the briefing on Zuma recall

Addressing journalists‚ party secretary-general Ace Magashule conceded that Zuma had not been given a deadline within which to resign following the recall‚ fuelling speculation that the impasse could drag on for a while longer.

The recall followed unsuccessful talks between ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and Zuma‚ with the former seeking to convince the latter to resign.

The ANC is also under pressure from opposition parties‚ who have pushed for a motion of no confidence vote in Zuma‚ whose tenure has been mired in controversy.

The EFF has called on National Assembly speaker Baleka Mbete to bring forward the no-confidence motion‚ which was scheduled to take place on 22 February.

At 3.22pm‚ the rand was at R11.9871 to the dollar from R11.9232; at R14.7851 to the euro from R14.6508; and at R16.6228 to the pound from R16.5087.

The euro was at $1.2332 from $1.2291.