“The President has failed us, and he must go. He cannot be allowed to continue to violate the Constitution and disrespect his oath of office, or to allow the further capture of our state.” This was a statement that was made by Sipho Pityana on Wednesday afternoon while he was addressing President Zuma and other members of Save South Africa during the announcement of a people’s motion of no confidence in Zuma at the Constitution Hill in Johannesburg.
Pityana, who has made a name for himself by speaking out against the presidency of Jacob Zuma, said that the people were saying no to a president who is seen as the champion of corruption and one who sees nothing wrong with ongoing attempts at state capture. He is the serving chairperson of the Save South Africa campaign.
Pityana said that the campaign would be in many forms that would include online petitions, silent protests where Zuma would be speaking, as well as doeks and armbands that would be worn to enhance the physical presence of the campaign. Furthermore, the campaign would also take the form of signatures that would be collected and submitted to parliament in 2017. The intention of the campaign was to petition parliament to listen to the case of the campaign. During the launch, Pityana criticised Zuma for comments that he made over the weekend when he reportedly said that he knew that there were people that were stealing from the state and threatening to reveal them. In his response, Pityana said, “We are saying no to a president who admits that he knows people are stealing from the state, and rather than locking them up, says he would rather bide his time and write a book about it.” When President Zuma asked who they were saving the country from, Pityana responded, “We must Save South Africa from you, Mr President.”
It was further revealed that the campaign had the support of the struggle icons and civil society activists, church leaders as well as trade unions. Chief among these icons who attended the launch is one of the famous Rivonia trialists, Ahmed Kathrada, who has been very vocal in calling upon Jacob Zuma to step down.