/ 16 December 2015

Thousands expected at #ZumaMustFall protests

Several marches have been arranged countrywide
Several marches have been arranged countrywide

Thousands of people are expected to take to the streets in various cities on Wednesday to express their dissatisfaction with President Jacob Zuma’s leadership.

Barring the Johannesburg march, organisers of marches in other cities have apparently not applied for permission to demonstrate.

Protest marches have been planned for Port Elizabeth, Cape Town, George, Johannesburg, Pretoria and Nelson Mandela Bay.

Zuma faced backlash after he announced last week that he was replacing Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene with ANC MP Des van Rooyen. There was a public outcry and calls for Zuma to be recalled over the move, which saw the Rand plummet.

But four days after the announcement Zuma then announced another move, this time replacing Van Rooyen with Pravin Gordhan as finance minister, which saw the Rand recover somewhat.

This, however, did not change peoples’ sentiments that Zuma should be removed.

The Unite Against Corruption (UAC) campaign will be leading the march in Johannesburg from the Nelson Mandela Bridge. The organisation called on all those affected by corruption to support the #?ZumaMustFall campaign, whether by his own hand or by the decision of the African National Congress.

Marches planned countrywide
The organisation’s Godfrey Phiri said the march was “all systems go”. He said they had received permission from Johannesburg Metro Police (JMPD) to march at the bridge.

He said they had heard about the planned march in Pretoria but learnt that the group organising it had not applied for permission. “Sometimes we need to follow what the laws require for the protection of people,” he said.

Chief Superintendent Wayne Minnaar of the JMPD said final arrangements for the march would be made on Wednesday morning.

The march would start in Braamfontein and end in Newtown Park.

Minnaar said the meeting between metro police and the organisers was expected to take place at 7am.

Meanwhile the Tshwane Metro Police Department said on Tuesday no application had been made regarding a march to the Union Buildings.

TMPD spokesperson, Senior Superintendent Isaac Mahamba, said no one had approached them. He said law enforcement agencies would decide on the best method to deal with the situation should people embark on marches.

Marchers will meet next to the Pretoria Art Museum before heading to the Union Buildings.

A march is also being held in Cape Town. The march is expected to start at 10:00 at the Company’s Gardens. Spokesperson for the City of Cape Town, Priya Reddy, said no request had been submitted. “The City has not received any notice of the #ZumaMustFall protest in terms of the Gatherings Act,” said Reddy. 

ANC Stalwart Barbara Hogan was tipped to be a speaker at the march.

Another group said it would be holding a silent protest in Plettenberg Bay at Plett Main Street. There would also be a picket in George at Unity Park at 10:00. – News24