ZUMA MUST GO! CORRUPTION AND NEO-LIBERALISM MUST GIVE WAY!
UNITED FRONT PRESS STATEMENT
10 February 2016
If President Zuma respected the people and Constitution of this country, he would use tomorrow’s State of the Nation Address to resign. As confirmed yet again by yesterday’s Constitutional Court hearing on the so-called “Nkandla security renovations”, he has repeatedly breached his obligation to the law and the Constitution. The United Front is extremely angry that President Zuma, the Minister of Safety and Security Nathi Nhleko and the National Assembly had the audacity to abuse their power and positions to defend and protect Zuma’s undue benefits from public expenditure on the so-called “Nkandla security renovations”. The UF condemns Zuma, Nhleko and the National Assembly for flagrantly breaching the law in order to defend Zuma’s ill-gotten wealth. This is willful lawlessness on the part of the President, the Cabinet and the National assembly.
As yesterday’s extraordinary Constitutional Court hearing heard, the President and the National Assembly now finally admit and accept the Constitution’s directive that the Public Protector’s findings are binding unless taken on judicial review, and that President Zuma had no legal right to ask the Minister Nhleko to determine whether he owed anything for the Nkandla renovations. For its part, the National Assembly violated the Constitution in its failure to hold President Zuma accountable on the Nkandla renovations.
All this confirms that Zuma must go.
He is simply unfit to be our President.
Zuma has not only unduly benefitted from public expenditure or undermined democratic checks and balances. He has also presided over the most naked and unashamed looting of state coffers by tenderpreneurs directly linked to him. His presidency has also seen the continuation of anti-poor and anti-worker neo-liberal economic policies that continue to produce unemployment and tie our economy to the interests and power of financial oligarchs. Indeed, Zuma and the ANC government must fall because they have spectacularly failed to provide for the people of the country and have mortgaged our future to the imperialist speculators, financial institutions and investment bankers and their funds.
To this end, the United Front calls on mass movements, trade unions, progressive churches and other religious bodies, youth, students, women, landless people and other progressive forces across the country to unite behind the call for Zuma to go. This must be part of a broader effort to mobilise for, and win democratic political reforms, end neo-liberal policies and win alternative economic policies that create sustainable jobs and transform the economy.
The president of the country must be directly elected by the people, Cabinet ministers must be elected by parliament, Parliament must be elected by a majority constituency based system and voters must have the right to recall their elected public representatives. These changes will put the power to elect a President, the most important single position in the country, directly into the hands of the people. The president, regardless of, until now exclusively “his”, dominance over the political party will not matter as he would be directly accountable to the populace. It would also ensure that Members of Parliament would be directly accountable to and subject to recall by the people from the area that voted the MP into parliament. In addition to appointing Ministers, MPs would be directly accountable for voting for or against economic interests of the specific community that elected them.
FOR COMMENTS, CONTACT:
1. Mazibuko K. Jara – Interim National Secretary 083 987 9633
2. John Appolis – Interim Campaigns Coordinator 071 623 5996
3. Dinga Sikwebu – National Coordinator 078 457 9855