Zuma impartial in Ivory Coast deadlock
Johannesburg – South African president Jacob Zuma on Tuesday said South Africa remained a neutral mediator in Ivory Coast’s political deadlock, SABC radio news reported.
Zuma denied that South Africa was favouring Ivorian president Laurent Gbagbo in that country’s political crisis.
“We should speak in one voice as the African Union (AU) to the Ivorians. Whatever resolution we come to, the Ivorians, whatever party, must not doubt that there are people outside who think differently,” Zuma said.
“They must know the AU has spoken,” he said.
Zuma was appointed to an AU crisis council, along with five other presidents, to help persuade Gbagbo to relinquish the country’s presidency.
Other crisis panel members are Blaise Compaore, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, Idriss Deby and Jakaya Kikwete, the heads of state of Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Chad and Tanzania respectively.
Gbagbo refused to step down to president-elect Alassane Ouattara, who many believe won the country’s elections in November.