“The Economic Freedom Fighters condemns the racist anti-black and self-hating remarks of President Zuma that poor South Africans are lazy particularly because whites are not in control,” spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said.
Speaking in Midrand on Tuesday, Zuma related an anecdote of a visit to an unnamed African country during the liberation struggle. “I got there and people were working very slowly, they were not in a rush, and I asked the comrade who was taking me, ‘What’s happening?’ “He said people don’t work fast, people say they are free. The white man has left, they are now free.”
Zuma reportedly said he wished he was a dictator so that he could stop some services, such as low-cost housing to the poor, believing that these perpetuated laziness, as people became reliant on government.
Ndlozi said if people had quality jobs, they would not need low-cost housing.
“Zuma’s government demonstrated its commitment to private capital by only raising taxes on the poor and middle class, by increasing personal income tax, fuel levy and electricity levy but left corporate tax untouched,” he said.
“Zuma’s comments that blacks work slow and are lazy because they do not work for whites reflects an anti-black and racist mentality that is consistent with dictatorial attitudes.”
‘Limits of freedom of speech’
The Mail & Guardian reported Wednesday that Zuma has a problem with freedom of speech. “But this is a democracy. In a democracy you can say whatever you like. There is freedom of speech. Sometimes you don’t understand limits of freedom of speech. We just say anything to anyone anyhow.”
If Zuma was a dictator, he wouldn’t even want to be a lifetime President. “If you can vote (for me) just one year, to be a dictator and close your eyes because I would make everybody understand that rights go with responsibility – (it is) not one sided,” Zuma joked.
But, the President conceded, he would never be given that opportunity. “We have to find very democratic ways of changing the manner which we do things now,” Zuma said. – Sapa, Staff Reporter