South Africa’s embattled President Jacob Zuma has resigned his office with immediate effect.

In a televised address to the nation late on Wednesday, the 75-year-old said he was a disciplined member of the ANC, to which he had dedicated his life.

“I fear no motion of no confidence or impeachment … I will continue to serve the people of South Africa and the ANC. I will dedicate my life to continuing to work for the execution of the policies of our organisation,” Zuma said.

“No life should be lost in my name. The ANC should never been divided in my name. I have therefore come to the decision to resign as president of the republic with immediate effect.”

Earlier, Mr Zuma’s governing ANC party told him to resign or face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

Zuma’s resignation leaves the path clear for deputy president, Cyril Ramaphosa, who took over the leadership of the ANC in December, to be elected by parliament to the highest office.

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