Jacob Zuma. Picture: GALLO IMAGES
Jacob Zuma. Picture: GALLO IMAGES

Former president Jacob Zuma says he was removed before the end of his term because he suggested the creation of a Brics bank, a move he believed would change the lives of poor black people.

Addressing ANC supporters at a memorial for the late Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe, Zuma credited himself for suggesting the creation of the bank after SA joined Bric states Brazil, Russia, India and China.

Zuma said he joined the bloc because western countries were never friends of the ruling ANC during the liberation struggle.

He also criticised those countries for approaching the ANC only after liberation, saying their ideas on the economy included  dealing with the International Monetary Fund.

“At Brics, I told them, we are poor ... and suggested [the Brics bank]. They [western countries] got the information about who came up with the idea … that’s why they said, ‘Remove this man’,” said Zuma.

He said that had he been allowed to serve out his term, he would have hastened the process of improving the life of poor black South Africans.

“One of the problems … I faced [was] I wanted to quicken the process of changing the position of the poor black South Africans,” said Zuma.

He said his detractors were against this and moved to oust him before the end of his term.

“They saw it was even better if I don’t complete my term because had I had one-and-a-half-years [left]. I was going to do a lot. I was really going to do it,” Zuma said.

He slammed economists in SA, saying they blamed him for everything that went wrong with the economy.

“If the rand goes down, it’s Zuma. If we are downgraded, it’s Zuma. Zuma is no longer in power, who is [ruining the economy] now?” he said in isiZulu.

Zuma said Mugabe was loved by African leaders for taking back the land in Zimbabwe.

The ANC’s struggle was to completely decolonise SA politically and economically but that did not happen.

“Those who controlled the economy, still control it. In other words, we are still colonised. We were only decolonised politically. When you speak like that, the clever ones look at you as a fool,” said Zuma.