Calling for Zuma to step down is not personal, says Nzimande

Johannesburg - SACP General Secretary Blade Nzimande says the party’s decision to call for President Jacob Zuma to step down was a decision that was not taken lightly.

Speaking at an SACP Gauteng Provincial Chris Hani Commemoration on Sunday afternoon, Nzimande explained that the decision was seen as the best solution to try to address the situation that the governing party finds itself in.

"Calling for the president to step down is not a decision we took lightly. It’s not personal. It’s a decision that in our view we thought would be correct."

Nzimande said although this was the SACP’s view, it would not address all the problems currently facing the ruling party. "It’s necessary but not sufficient decision to try to change things."

He said Cosatu needed to join his party and mobilise the working class in order to have an impact and make a significant change in society.

"If the workers don’t stand up now, our revolution is gone. We need massive and militant working class mobilising the rescue of our revolution."

He said people did not want to hear alliance partners like itself and Cosatu expressing themselves in statements but wanted to see them on the ground and talking truth to power, like former SACP leader Chris Hani had done when he was alive.

"When wrong decisions are made, we are expected to defend them as alliances. We are saying no, the time for that has ended," Nzimande said.

He also criticised those who accused the SACP of being a small party.

"Those who think we are a Mickey Mouse party are very mistaken. Our membership now stands at 280 000."

‘ANC did not do it alone’

Nzimande said South Africa’s liberation was not achieved by the ANC alone but alongside its alliance partners, among others. And although one of its biggest achievements had been to unite all Africans under one party, that fact could not be taken for granted now.

"Our revolution is on trial. Our country is in trouble if we are not careful we will be derailed.

"There are counter-revolutionary forces both inside and outside [the country] who would like to dislodge an ANC government that is pursuing a revolutionary agenda."

He said those forces did not want to remove the ANC but instead to capture it and turn it into their instrument.

"When we begin to breed a corrupt state, that state then begins to become a securocrat or a gangster state where organs of state are being used to discredit or eliminate opponents.

"When things begin to go wrong, you start to see a parallel state that begins to make decisions."


"Why are we in trouble? Is it not also a 20-year accumulation of doing wrong things?" he asked.

South Africa was currently at a crossroads where the liberation movement was starting to destroy itself.  

“Can the ANC... rescue itself now? We hope it will. We will make our contribution. If it tears itself apart, what happens? What replaces the ANC? The fact of the matter is if things continue this way, the ANC will eat itself up," Nzimande said.

When things begin to go wrong, this usually resulted in populist rhetoric which went against the policies of the ruling government, he said.

The ultimate fight for the movement was still against monopoly capital, whatever colour it came in, he said.

"Monopoly capital is monopoly capital, whether it’s white or black. You can’t say Guptas are an alternative to monopoly capital. The Guptas have become the most immediate thing you deal with… when fighting monopoly capital."


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