Cyril Ramaphosa vows to tackle corruption as South Africa's president

President of South Africa Jacob Zuma gestures during the 54th National Conference of the ruling African National Congress at the Nasrec Expo Centre in Johannesburg South Africa

Cyril Ramaphosa was elected as South Africa's new president Thursday after the departure of embattled leader Jacob Zuma.

The resignation came after the African National Congress (ANC), the country's ruling party, chose to remove the president from his role on Monday.

Zuma resigned after years of scandals that damaged the reputation of the ruling ANC, which had instructed him this week to step down or face a parliamentary motion of no confidence that he would nearly certainly lose.

"No life should be lost in my name".

His resignation came at the end of a long speech in which he said he disagreed with the way the ANC had acted towards him.

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba said that Zuma would speak "at 0800 GMT and satellite trucks were in position at Pretoria's Union Buildings, the seat of the country's government".

Ramaphosa, 65, drew worldwide acclaim for steering talks that ended apartheid, a system of institutionalized racial segregation, and produced South Africa's first democratic constitution.

Julius Malema, leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters party, said ANC politicians had failed to hold former Mr Zuma to account for alleged corruption and had therefore violated the constitution. Born poor, Zuma taught himself to read and write and joined the anti-apartheid ANC at age 17. He served 10 years in prison with Mandela. On Friday evening, he is expected to deliver the state of the nation address that had been postponed during the ruling party's days of closed-door negotiations to persuade Zuma to resign. Zuma's second five-year term ends with elections in 2019, but the ANC wants to remove him so that it has more time to recover the confidence of disaffected voters.

DA Leader Mmusi Maimane said the DA would not field their own candidate to contest the presidency when Parliament gathers to elect a new president at 2pm on Thursday.

"I do not fear exiting political office, " he said.

But Zuma's office said there was no "official communication" of any impending address but urged the media to wait. He warned that infighting in the party could end in violence on the streets. "Some people may not like this, may feel something is wrong". He has led the party and the country for ten years.

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