South Africa's deputy 'would believe' Zuma rape accusation

South Africa's deputy 'would believe' Zuma rape accusation

Zuma said he also met with all the ANC presidential hopefuls last week where all agreed on the need to ensure unity‚ order and cohesion at the conference.

On Thursday evening, Ramaphosa said that, while he accepts that President Jacob Zuma was acquitted of raping Fezekile Kuzwayo - also known as Khwezi - he would believe her allegations. Mr Zuma's deputy, Cyril Ramaphosa, told a local radio station: "Yes, I would believe her". "But at the same time, there is a side of me that says 'yes there was a young woman who complained she was raped, but I have to listen to that and pay heed to that and pledge my sympathy and my empathy to her story", Ramaphosa said.

"It must be one of the most hard decisions that she had to make‚ so‚ yes‚ I would believe her".

The rape allegation has haunted Zuma for years despite his acquittal in court and has remained a popular topic in South Africa as the #MeToo movement spreads.

Ramaphosa is one of two front-runners in a closely watched contest to take over from President Jacob Zuma as ANC leader at a party conference starting on December 16.

"In our view, President Zuma would be clearly conflicted in having to appoint a National Director of Public Prosecutions, given the background. and particularly the ever present spectre of the many criminal charges against him that have not gone away", Judge Mlambo said in the ruling. He said the sex was consensual and the court acquitted him of rape charges in 2006.

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