ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa has called on Christians to be South Africa's moral conscience when it came to crimes such as rape.
"There is no better agent than Christians and the church to raise the morals, the moral consciousness of our nation," Ramaphosa was quoted in the City Press on Sunday as saying at the Pentecostal Holiness Church on Saturday.
"It falls on us as Christians. We must say this is a sin. This is a crime. Rape is a sin and it is a crime. "We are the ones, as Christians, who must stand up and say: 'Corruption, we will never accept it, because it is a sin. It is a crime'."
The newspaper reported that Ramaphosa said Christians needed to be at the forefront of preventing the abuse of women.
"We also need to be the moral conscience of our country when it comes to respect for woman and acting against rapists," he said.
In December 2011, the Times reported that Zuma had slated Christianity, saying it brought on the existence of orphans and old-age homes.
At a launch of a road and crime safety awareness campaign at KwaMaphumulo in KwaZulu-Natal, Zuma was quoted as saying, “As Africans, long before the arrival of religion and [the] gospel, we had our own ways of doing things.”
“Those were times that the religious people refer to as dark days but we know that, during those times, there were no orphans or old-age homes. Christianity has brought along these things,” he said.
“We have passed laws that prohibit you as a parent [from using] corporal punishment. Today, when, as a parent, you bring your child [to] order by using corporal punishment, you are breaking the law, but the person who passed that law cannot raise your child the way you want to.”
Zuma said while he did not blame such legislation, “I can’t be diplomatic about this. It’s a fact.”
In response, presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj panned the report, saying it was lost in translation.
“The president speaks in deep Zulu on occasion and his message is often lost in translation,” Maharaj told the Mail & Guardian.