ANC National Chairperson Gwede Mantashe opens proceedings at the Mandela centernary celebrations in Cape Town.
If President Jacob Zuma is not recalled by Sunday evening, a group claiming to comprise ANC and SACP members vowed they would take to the streets and march to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to call for a national shutdown until he is ousted.
At a press briefing on Sunday, Hangwi Maumela, who claims to be an ANC branch member in Sandton, called for all South Africans to down tools on Monday until Zuma is removed as president of the country.
“We want everyone, on Monday, to stay away from work until Zuma steps down,” said Maumela.
“Tomorrow in all nine provinces, don’t go to work. Whether police, nurse, doctor, security guard, garden boy, working at border gate, don’t go to work. This crisis we are facing affects us all.”
He said they would not leave the Union Buildings until Zuma was no longer president.
“We are coming to the Union Buildings tomorrow and we are not apologetic about it, we are ready for everything.”
‘Mugabe of South Africa’
“This man is like Mugabe in South Africa. Some of us have suffered for this democracy. I feel Nelson Mandela, wherever he is, he is upset with Zuma, the (national executive committee) NEC and ANC for not exercising authority.”
Maumela said that they have written to the NEC pleading that Zuma be removed immediately, as well as calling on Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa to not be threatened or ashamed to take authority and lead.
“Ramaphosa should not be apologetic and be afraid to ask the president to step down”, said Maumela.
He added that ANC members should be supporting one another in defeating those who are protecting and keeping Zuma in office.
Taking a swipe at ‘corrupt ministers’
“Those people are corrupt ministers. Comrade Cyril, during his campaign, promised us that he will root out corruption. He must start now and exercise those powers.”
Meanwhile, the ANC in the greater Johannesburg region distanced itself from what it referred to as “bogus ANC Johannesburg members”.
“The African National Congress in the Greater Johannesburg Region has noted persons who are, under the guise of being members of the ANC Joburg Region, calling for the immediate removal of President Jacob Zuma or a ‘National Shut Down’,” said regional spokesperson Jolidee Matongo.
“We call on any member(s) who may have any information on these individuals to please contact the region in order for a disciplinary process to be instituted against them immediately.”
The SACP in Gauteng also distanced itself from the planned protest action.”We further distance ourselves from the man who claims to hold a position in the SACP who took part in the press conference. The man does not represent the SACP and any of its structures. In fact the man is not known to any structures of the SACP and therefore doesn’t have a mandate to speak on our behalf,” said SACP provincial secretary Jacob Mamabolo.
The SACP said it would conduct a thorough investigation into the identity of the man who claimed to represent the party.”Whilst we reaffirm the principled and profound decision taken by the Central Committee calling on the ANC President Jacob Zuma to resign or be recalled by the ANC, we believe that this matter is well within the purview of our national leadership and it remain seized with the matter.”
The ANC NEC have been called to a special meeting in Pretoria on Monday afternoon, where it is believed that the agenda will be about Zuma’s exit as president.
ANC Gauteng spokesperson Motalatale Modiba said the provincial ANC reiterated its stance that the ANC NEC was able to resolve “the current leadership issue decisively in a manner that demonstrates that the ANC has put the interest of South Africa first”.
He said the provincial structures condemned and distanced itself from the actions of the so-called ‘Zuma Must Go Group’.
“The ANC calls on its members, supporters and society at large not to heed this irresponsible and reckless call by these individuals who have no mandate to speak on behalf of the ANC or any of its members and structures,” Modiba said.
“We have further noted that certain individuals alleged to be ANC members, clad in ANC regalia, took part in an unmandated press briefing by the individuals in question earlier today. The Province has given a directive to its regions to embark on the process of verifying their membership status and to institute disciplinary actions for any transgression and violation of the ANC code of conduct.”