JOHANNESBURG -- South African President Jacob Zuma says he has resigned "with immediate effect."

The scandal-tainted leader made the announcement late Wednesday in a televised address to the nation.

Zuma says he has resigned despite his disagreement with the instruction of the ruling African National Congress party to leave office immediately. The ANC had been prepared to pursue a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

Zuma's tenure has been marred by years of corruption scandals.