Politics is not a game, Zuma warns

2015-07-16 13:12
President Jacob Zuma. (GCIS)

President Jacob Zuma. (GCIS)

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Durban - President Jacob Zuma on Wednesday urged ANC members to stop being angry with one another and instead focus on building a stronger party.

He said politics was not a game, but about running a country and offering the best democracy to the people

Zuma also took a dig at opposition parties, saying they needed to play a more meaningful role in building a better South Africa.

“Why are we fighting?” asked Zuma, while delivering a moving tribute at Thulani Mashaba’s memorial service outside Richards Bay, on Wednesday evening 

Mashaba, the uThungulu deputy mayor, and regional ANC chairperson Musa Dladla, died in a car accident in Ballito last Thursday.

“This hero has played his role in the ANC; the question is what are you doing as a member of the ANC? Who are you bringing into your inner circle,” asked the president. 

“Let us be strong, let us stop fighting over meaningless things. Leaders must lead and those that are following must learn how to lead from their leaders.

"No organisation will survive if there are divisions in that organisation,” he said. 

Zuma said every organisation had problems, but what was important was how it managed those challenges.

Politics is not a game

“One day we are laughing together and the next day we are fighting. Organisations are different, just like wood; some of it burns for a long time and some for short. Members of the ANC must build the ANC like Thulani did.

“Stop being angry at your comrades, what have they done to you? These are the same comrades that will bury you one day.”

Zuma cautioned the opposition to be responsible and play a more meaningful role.

“Some of you have turned politics into a game. Politics is not a game, it is about running a country, governing and offering the best democracy to our people.

“As different political parties, we all want a prosperous and peaceful South Africa, the only difference between us is the way we are going about to achieve this.

“Some of you choose to walk while we choose to take the highway,” he said to loud applaud and laughter.

But, Zuma said, opposition parties should work together with the government to help build a free and democratic South Africa.

“Why are we fighting? Why are we swearing at one another? You can’t burn South Africa. If you burn it, we will all die,” he said laughing.

“What is important is that we still have a long way to go so that we can eradicate poverty in South Africa. Let us work together and not take from each other.

Stop undermining the electorate

"Respect everyone, even the more popular person because that popular person respects others too." 

KwaZulu-Natal DA leader Zwakele Mncwango said Zuma should do introspection before calling for the opposition to work with the government.

“If he is talking about contribution, the DA puts forward motions in parliament, legislature and council and the ANC always votes against them.

“We are willing and are contributing towards uplifting our communities. We don’t only oppose motions, we also put forward proposals.

"When we talk about respecting others, he must start by respecting the voter and stop undermining the electorate,” said Mncwango, adding that criticising the opposition was baseless.

KwaZulu-Natal EFF leader Vusi Khoza said Zuma should be the last person to speak about democracy and prosperity.

"Democracy to Zuma means domination by one party, which is the ANC. A prosperous South Africa to Zuma means spending over R200m on his personal private residence and we are not going to keep quiet when such things are happening.

“We will not be co-opted into his shenanigans. We as the EFF are going to be here for a long time until he pays back the money,” said Khoza.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  eff  |  jacob zuma  |  durban ­  |  politics

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