Zuma speaks out against crime and Gaza attacks

By Drum Digital
23 July 2014

President Jacob Zuma expressed shock at the killing of four-year old Taegrin Morris in Reiger Park, Johannesburg and the onslaught on Gaza at Parliament today.

President Jacob Zuma has expressed shock at the killing of four-year old Taegrin Morris in Reiger Park, east of Johannesburg, earlier this week.

The boy was dragged with his mother’s car as the thugs who had hijacked it sped off. His father later found him dead.

Zuma said nation-building should include making the country safer for children.

“No child should be subjected to such brutality. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the Morris family and to the community of Reiger Park as a whole,” he said.

Zuma, who was delivering his budget vote in Parliament today, also thanked the police for finding six-year old Mongezi Phike a week after he was kidnapped by the men who hijacked his father’s car in Bronkhorspruit.

“We condemn all these coldblooded criminal acts and appeal to our people to assist the police to bring the perpetrators to book,” he said.

Zuma also expressed dismay at the violence in the Gaza Strip where hundreds of people have died since the conflict between Palestine and Israel escalated in the past few days.

He called on Hamas to cease firing rockets at Israeli citizens.

“We call on the Israeli government to stop its ground and air offensive, which continues to cause loss of life and a devastating humanitarian crisis.

“We are also opposed to the veiled attempt by the Israeli government to use its onslaught on Gaza to undermine the government of national unity in Palestine.

“There will never be a military solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The only solution lies in serious and genuine negotiations involving all parties,” Zuma said.

The issue continued to feature in the debate as ANC chief whip Stone Sizani picked up on it, and accused the DA of being quiet on the violence in the Middle East because it was funded by the builder of the Israeli wall.

This was an apparent reference to a news story that said a businessman who got a contract in the building of the wall had funded both the DA and Agang, and was behind their botched merger.

DA Parliamentary Mmusi Maimane leader sought to dispel such a perception, and condemned Israel’s disproportionate response to Hamas.

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