President Jacob Zuma on Wednesday said the African National Congress (ANC) has not provided him with reasons why he should resign as the president of the country.
"I need to be furnished on what I have done. Unfortunately, no one has been able to provide what is it that I have done. I said to them if I have done something wrong, there are processes in the ANC," said Zuma in an exclusive interview with the SABC at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.
Finally breaking his silence, Zuma told journalist, Mzwandile Mbeje, that he was not defying the National Executive Committee which has recalled him as the president.
"No, I have not defied the party."
He said there had been a number of things that had happened and said he had not been given a chance to respond partly because he believed that things must be handled in a particular way rather than through the media.
"I think that it was the 4th of this month when the top six came to see me…to indicate that they were sent by the working committee of the ANC to come and persuade me to resign as president of the Republic."
Zuma said a result of this conversation was that the working committee had a need to begin the process of transferring the authority to the new president.
"In the discussion I asked as to what was the problem? Why must I be persuaded to resign? Have I done anything wrong and of course the officials couldn't provide [evidence of] what I have done. But it was basically put that there is a good mood in the country - it must be maintained so that we could work hard to unite and go forward."
He said once the motivation was made it was even more important to hear what he had done wrong.
"Because that suggests that if I am not there... that the situation would be, perhaps, different. What is it that I have done?"
Zuma said in the process of the discussion he indicated to the top six that this was not the first time that the matter was being raised.
"In fact [during] the whole of 2017, this matter was being raised. In the NEC itself we had two major discussions on the same request that had come and I do not see anything new that is being brought."
Zuma said he again asked what he had done.
"Speaker after speaker, no one ever came to say, 'look, this is what you have done'."
Zuma said the only difference now was that some of the people that had raised the matter were now in the position of leadership.
"They are therefore in authority to say this matter must still continue, and precisely because of that it is not a new matter.
"I need to be furnished on what I have done. Unfortunately, no one has been able to provide what is it that I have done. I said to them if I have done something wrong, there are processes in the ANC."
For example, he said, there are processes of disciplinary actions that can be taken by the relevant structures.
"I found it, in a sense, very unfair to me that this issue must be raised all the time."