Defend Democracy! Protect Our Future! Zuma Must Go!
On Sat 16 April 2016 organise consultative assemblies wherever you are to suggest actions that will ultimately show President Jacob Zuma the door.
On 31 March 2016, the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) unanimously announced that President Jacob Zuma’s failure to implement or challenge in court recommendations of the Public Protector on irregular expenditures on upgrades at his Nkandla private residence amounted to nothing less than a failure to “uphold, defend and respect the Constitution”. The highest court in the land also found that on the Nkandla saga, Parliament failed to exercise its oversight role and to hold the executive accountable.
The ConCourt findings are very serious. The actions of the President and Parliament in violation of the supreme law of the land are a sword that pierces through the heart of our constitutional democracy. The fabric that is meant to hold our democracy together is being shredded to pieces before our very eyes. This is done by those who are constitutionally bound to protect a democracy that many fought and died for.
Instead of doing the honourable thing and stepping down, the President has offered a half-hearted apology and continues to mislead the nation by twisting what the ConCourt found; saying that he has always been prepared to pay an amount towards the Nkandla non-security upgrades as soon as these were determined by a correct authority. In his attempts to throw sand in our eyes, few ANC leaders are assisting President Zuma. Instead of taking the matter to their organisation’s branches, these leaders continue to act as an iron shield around the President.
Despite the bluster from Luthuli House and the ANC caucus in Parliament, there is widespread outrage against this naked abuse of political office, both outside and increasingly inside the ANC. Civil society is strident in its concerns. Revered and sincere veterans are speaking out. Political actors across the political divide are raising their concerns and fears. The President’s crocodile tears have also not softened religious leaders who argue that the apology is a cop-out.
A chorus has started in different parts of the country. People from different walks of life are saying: Defend and protect our democracy, President Zuma must go!
A broad but determined initiative that was born on the steps of the Constitutional Court when the Unite Against Corruption (UAC) coalition convened a press conference on Wed 06 April is gathering momentum. It calls on you to organise consultative assemblies wherever you are on Sat 16 April to suggest actions that will ultimately show President Jacob Zuma the door and to plan actions for 27 April 2016.
The main consultative assembly will be in Soweto, Klip Town starting at 10am. Others are being organised elsewhere around the country. We call on those who organise such assemblies to inform us. Make sure your organisation is represented at the dialogues. Bring your ideas, mandates, enthusiasm and willingness to mobilise our people in defence of democracy!
Ke Nako! Now is the time for citizens to act.
Contacts: Ethel Williams-Abrahamse – firstname.lastname@example.org (078 754 1223)
Ferrial Adam – email@example.com (074 181 3197)