Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Zuma does not want to change Constitution, says Maharaj

The presidency told the Mail & Guardian on Friday that President Jacob Zuma "did not use the word 'constitution'" earlier this week, with spokesperson Mac Maharaj saying "he did not say he wants to change the Constitution."

On Wednesday, several media outlets reported that Zuma told hundreds of ANC supporters in KaNyamazane, near Nelspruit, to vote ANC to ensure the party gets a two-thirds majority in order to make changes to South Africa's most prominent piece of legislation.

However, he did not specify how he wants to change it.

"We want a huge majority this time because we want to change certain things that couldn't be changed with a small majority so that we move forward because there are certain hurdles. People talk about a constitution they have never seen. We saw that constitution," he said.

'Forever and ever'
He later said the ANC would govern "forever and forever".

The presidency also released a statement on Friday saying the Constitution is "not static" and is a "transformative document".

Maharaj said there was "nothing untoward" about "wishes to amend any part of the Constitution".

"There is nothing inappropriate about amending the Constitution provided it's done within the law and the Constitutional Court is there to oversee the procedure," he told the M&G.

According to the statement, the Constitution has been amended 18 times, as recent as November 2012.

Zuma was in Nelspruit ahead of the ANC's January 8 statement and to launch its election manifesto at the Mbombela Stadium on Saturday.

Vote for an informed choice

We’re dropping the paywall this week so that everyone can access all our stories for free, and access the information they need in the run up to the local government elections. To follow the news, sign up to our daily elections newsletter for the latest updates and analysis.

If our coverage helps inform your decision, cast your vote for an informed public and join our subscriber community. Right now, you can a full year’s access for just R510. Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.

Amanda Strydom
Amanda Strydom is the Mail & Guardian online's night editor. With a background in science and journalism, she has a black belt third dan in ballet and, according to a statistical analysis of the past three years, reads 2.73 books every week. She never finishes her tea, although she won't say no to a cupcake. But only just this once.

Related stories


Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Latest stories

Andries Tatane’s spirit will drive fight against ANC in Ficksburg

The nascent Setsoto Service Delivery Forum is confident it can remove the ‘failing ANC’ in the chronically mismanaged Free State municipality

Paddy Harper: On gleeful politicians and headless chickens

Paddy Harper doesn’t know who to vote for yet, since the Dagga Party isn’t contesting his ward, but right now what to order for lunch is a more pressing concern

Malema: ANC will use load-shedding to steal votes

While on the campaign trail in the Eastern Cape, EFF leader Julius Malema, without evidence, claimed the ANC was planning to use rolling blackouts to ‘steal votes’

Khaya Koko: The looting isn’t over until the fat belly...

A song about Eastern Cape Premier Oscar Mabuyane preventing looting was way off the mark in a province riddled with corruption and theft

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…