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Vol 47 No 15

Published 21st July 2006

South Africa

Up close and personal

ANC stalwarts try to calm nerves as the two camps dig in for a long succession struggle

Manoeuvring over the succession to President Thabo Mbeki in 2009 is becoming increasingly fraught - so much so that a high-level negotiating group was set up last week to dampen tensions and lay down ground rules. The invective between supporters of Mbeki and his sacked deputy, Jacob Zuma, is highly personal, and African National Congress officials worry that it is taking on an ethnic slant as well. In the negotiations, a senior figure in the Presidency will represent Mbeki's supporters and the Deputy Premier of kwaZulu/Natal, Zweli Mkhize, will represent Zuma's supporters.

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