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ANC’s Bid Rejected as Zuma’s MK Party Prevails

South Africa's election court rejects ANC's bid to bar Zuma-backed MK party. Legal battle unfolds amidst ANC's declining support and internal rifts.

South Africa’s political landscape is witnessing a significant legal battle as the country’s election court rejects the African National Congress (ANC)’s attempt to de-register a newly formed party, uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK), supported by former President Jacob Zuma. The MK party derives its name from the disbanded armed wing of the ANC, symbolizing a nod to the liberation struggle against apartheid.

The electoral court’s rejection marks a blow to the ANC’s efforts to impede the MK party’s participation in the upcoming general election scheduled for May. Despite the ANC’s contention that the MK party failed to meet official registration criteria, the court’s decision allows the MK party to remain on the ballot.

The emergence of the MK party, with Zuma’s endorsement, adds a new dimension to South Africa’s political landscape. Zuma’s backing of the MK party is perceived as a potential threat to the ANC’s longstanding dominance in South African politics, with concerns that it could diminish the ANC’s support base, particularly in Zuma’s home province of KwaZulu-Natal.

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Zuma’s involvement in the MK party comes amidst his suspension from the ANC, highlighting the internal divisions within the ruling party. Once a prominent figure within the ANC’s MK, Zuma’s endorsement of the new party signals a departure from the political establishment he once represented.

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However, the ANC remains steadfast in its opposition to the MK party, initiating separate legal actions alleging copyright infringement against the newly formed entity. The party’s leadership accuses Zuma of exploiting military symbolism for opportunistic gains and undermining the ANC’s legacy of resistance against apartheid.

The rift between Zuma and the ANC stems from his tumultuous tenure as president, marred by corruption allegations and internal power struggles. Despite his removal from office in 2018, Zuma retains influence within certain circles, leveraging his political clout to support alternative platforms like the MK party.

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As South Africa braces for the upcoming elections, the ANC faces the prospect of losing its majority grip on power for the first time in three decades. Opinion polls suggest a decline in the ANC’s vote share, reflecting dissatisfaction with the party’s governance and leadership.


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