South Africans took to the streets in several major cities on Friday to protest against President Jacob Zuma after he reshuffled the cabinet.
Many of the protesters were demanding that President Zuma leaves office and sorts himself. The biggest trigger was because he sacked Pravin Gordhan, the Finance Minister last Thursday.
The protests have brought in more than 30,000 people with some in Johannesburg turning violent forcing police to try to calm the situation with rubber bullets and tear gas. This didn’t help much though.
The major planners of the strike were the members of the Democratic Alliance Party who intended for a calm and peaceful demonstration but later was supported by the South African Communist Party (SACP).
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It is very complicated since several parties are now part of the protest including some factions of the ANC. However, there are also those counter striking so as to keep Zuma in some power such as the Umkhonto we Sizwe (MKMVA).
Zuma seems unphased by all this so far, not far back on Wednesday the ANC rejected calls to impeach him. The South African president isn’t new to strikes and impeachment threats against him which makes you wonder whether these ones will have any effect on him.
Many of the protesters are calling Zuma a thief due to several corruption allegations, for selling South African assets and resources and misuse of his authority.
Posters held show words like “Fire Zuma”, “Zuma Must Go”, “Change 19” and some of the other cities involved are Jo’burg, Durban and Pretoria.
Even Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his wife joined in the protests just outside their home.
Will Zuma bow down and leave or this will just blow over like previous protests?
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Lawk is a mozillian, writes for Spur, Newslibre and consults part time for Every1Mobile and Innovware.
He loves open source, the open web, writing, reading and developing literacy tools that can teach the youth around the world especially in East Africa.