By Genevieve Quintal, Karabo Ngoepe, Mpho Raborife, News24
Johannesburg – President Jacob Zuma thinks he is a chief and South Africans are his subjects, former Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said on Thursday.
“[He is] entitled to that R250m… he liberated us, he went to prison, he went to exile. Why are we complaining about small change of money?” Vavi told reporters after the Constitutional Court ruling on the Nkandla matter.
“That is what I think is in his mind, that he is the chief and we are the subjects.”
Vavi was speaking following the court’s unanimous ruling that Zuma and the National Assembly breached the Constitution when they ignored Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s remedial action that Zuma repay a portion of R246m spent on so-called security upgrades to his Nkandla home.
Madonsela recommended that Zuma repay a reasonable amount of the money spent on building him an amphitheatre, a visitor’s centre, a cattle kraal, chicken run, and swimming pool. She found these five items were not necessary for his security.
Zuma made submissions to the National Assembly, stating that he had not asked for the upgrades.
Vavi said the court’s ruling was a reminder to Zuma that he was not above the law.
“Today he’s been reminded that we fought for this tenet in this Constitution that says no one is above the law and that all are equal.”
Zwelinzima Vavi: "Zuma has betrayed the trust we gave him. He must not expect us to follow him. We don't support the Guptarisation of SA."
— Alec Hogg (@alechogg) March 31, 2016
Vavi said Zuma and his ministers had violated their oaths of office and undermined everything the “real ANC” stood for.
“They have no choice, they must go. The National Assembly, all of those ANC MPs must hang their heads in shame, they must go. The Cabinet must go. Everyone who had been giving the president a round of applause must go with him.”
Vavi said, although South Africa seemed to be stuck, it could be saved by ordinary South Africans calling for Zuma to be recalled. – News24