Maharaj: No offer for Zapiro debate

2012-10-30 08:50

Johannesburg - The presidency has challenged cartoonist Jonathan "Zapiro" Shapiro to a public debate, it was reported on Tuesday.

Presidential spokesperson Mac Maharaj, who extended the invitation to Shapiro, had said a debate would help "create an environment of dialogue rather than confrontation", the Star reported.

However, Maharaj apparently denied that the presidency extended an invitation to Zapiro for a debate. This was according to a tweet from Beeld reporter, Pauli van Wyk.
On Monday, the suit against Shapiro and the Sunday Times over the "Lady Justice" cartoon was formally withdrawn.

Maharaj said: "Let's look at [the cartoon] through the multicultural lens of South Africa... in an atmosphere where we can listen to each other and stop pretending that any one individual has the infallible answers to all our problems."

He had labelled Shapiro's cartoon racist, and had said it was informed by "ingrained prejudices" about African male sexuality.

Shapiro told the newspaper he considered this a deliberate "red herring", but found the idea of a public debate intriguing.

"I'm never one to shy away from debate, but in this context we have won a total victory (ie the withdrawal of charges) and they're trying to score points now."

Charges were laid against Shapiro and the Sunday Times in 2008 after it published the cartoon depicting Zuma loosening his trousers and apparently about to rape "Lady Justice".

Zuma initially wanted R5m, but the amount was later reduced to R4m. He subsequently dropped the charge of impairment of dignity and further reduced the amount to R100 000 for defamation and an unconditional apology, before dropping the case entirely.

  • MarcelKotze - 2012-10-30 08:53

    Why not call back the public debate with the DA and accept your losses on this one Mr Zoomer?

      junebugg.kinte - 2012-10-30 09:14

      Its official, ANC are is a circus ran by bunch of clowns...our government got time to debate with Cartoonists but not opposition parties?

      maree.cassie - 2012-10-30 09:16

      Agreed! If Zuma wanted to prove anything, let him debate Zille!!!! That I would like to see!

      atholl.canterbury - 2012-10-30 09:20

      Bantamweight vs the Flyweight vs the Heavyweight In boxing, it's always recommended to fight within your weight. Lighter weigh is better but heavier is bad. - 2012-10-30 09:20

      Zaphiro or Zille it doesn't really matter-I think he should rather take on Zille if he thinks of standing a chance. Zaphiro will rip him to pieces and its long overdue. will give my right arm to be at that debate. But Zipper will most probably not be there himself , what an coward, idiot

      patrick.buckley.712 - 2012-10-30 09:23

      Suddenly frog face wants a debate......... Just goes to show why we are in such a mess. Zuma does not have time for constructive exchanges, but can find time to talk about BS. Using "deflection" strategies like this to fool the people.

      art5SA - 2012-10-30 09:26

      The NATION'S OFFICIAL LIAR..... wanting a debate with Zapiro???? Now I have everything.... ONLY IN SOUTH AFRICA... Rather let the SHAGGER ZULU take on "THE MADAM".... I will PAY MONEY to see that!!!!!! - 2012-10-30 10:03

      oh boy... this "leadership" is beyond pathetic

      andre.vandeventer.16 - 2012-10-30 10:11

      Because Zuma does not have the intellect or the knowledge to debate Zille. He only has the confidence to debate with a cartoonist. What a joke!

      Dan - 2012-10-30 10:27

      This is going to be funnier than the roasting of stevie boy, I cannot wait !!

      aniken.vader.31 - 2012-10-30 10:32

      I ALWAYS KNEW that african male sexuality is MORE important to the pres. First the spear, THEN .... well... there is nothing else on the agenda for zoomer and small-MAC-meal..!

  • sanchez.sancho.7 - 2012-10-30 08:56

    with the debate be Zapiro vs Zuma??? a five year old can win a debate agsinst ZOOOma , unless if its about showers

      art5SA - 2012-10-30 09:27

      And the 5 yr old will SWEEP THE FLOOR with Zuma...

      Willie - 2012-10-30 09:34

      a!a!a!a!a! a debate with Shapiro ,Zuma ,oh boy oh boy his afraid of a Zille what about Zapiro

      omge.klits - 2012-10-30 10:10

      How's the "debate" going to work - our cartoonist draws a picture then yours does . . . ?

  • warren.rodel - 2012-10-30 08:56

    Why avoid the DA debates? If you cant handle that then this debate may make the ANC look worse. The State vs 1 Man, I would think carefully about this, could be more embarrassing moments for the ANC.

      SharonE - 2012-10-30 09:49

      Zapiro should accept the challenge, but only on condition that he debates with Jacob and Jacob only. This could be fun - it is a given that Helen will win a debate with Jacob hands down, but if he thinks Zapiro will be less of a challenge, he might get a nasty surprise! Next Zapiro cartoon: Jacob with egg on his face..

      andre.ernstzen - 2012-10-30 10:15

      The Presidency challenges Zapiro to a debate doesn't mean Zuma will actually debate. The presidency as in a representative of the presidency, most probably Mac himself

  • Gordon20 - 2012-10-30 08:57

    But you won't debate with Zille??!!

      warren.rodel - 2012-10-30 09:03

      I think they are trying to set up a stage for public humiliation, but you have to have wits in order to win!

      abram.spamers - 2012-10-30 09:09

      Maybe Zapiro should ask Zille to represent him... Thats one way for her to get her debate

  • mable.jacobs.90 - 2012-10-30 08:59

    Stop wassting our time forhead, why not take on DA?What, you looking for a lesser opponent???

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-30 10:16

      "What, you looking for a lesser opponent???" I beg to differ. This "Yid Kid" is not exactly a lessor opponent. Another distraction "cooked up" by 'ol Mac ...

      mable.jacobs.90 - 2012-10-30 14:33

      Zuma obviously thinks he might stand a chance, but he's in for a rude awekening

  • craig.s.pepper - 2012-10-30 09:03

    WTF! Showerhead challenges Shapiro to a debate, but doesn't have the nuts to take on Helen Zille. At least he is consistently stupid.

      aniken.vader.31 - 2012-10-30 10:30

      he is scared of a woman! This woman can talk back not like those that he screws and have kids with! This one CAN stand up to him any day any time!

  • mparrster - 2012-10-30 09:05

    The Presidency is willing to have a debate with Zapiro, a well respected Cartoonist, but not with Zille! Chickens!

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-30 09:28

      Imagine that, cartoonist against a party political clown, debating RSA politics and freedom of speech?

  • matthys.debeer.5 - 2012-10-30 09:08

    Hahahaha! A president in a debate with a cartoonist, priceless!!

      art5SA - 2012-10-30 09:28

      Only in SA..... Actually... come to think of it.... Do they know what a DEBATE entails?

      alan.gernet - 2012-10-30 09:45

      whatever - Zapiro - will make an absolute fool of ZoomZoom

      aniken.vader.31 - 2012-10-30 10:30

      come nandos - let's have a good one with this one LOL! The anc simply provides all the necessary material for marketing to them hahaha!

  • lacrimose.wolf - 2012-10-30 09:09

    What an insight into the absurd stubbornness of the Presidency. You lost your petty squabble, do yourself and the country a favour and move onto addressing serious issues. Issues that affect all the people of our country, not your wounded ego.

  • gary.desousa.7 - 2012-10-30 09:09

    Take the challange, if you have "won" then winning and countering the words of some anc mac with his cut and paste type socialist and commie arguments will be easy.

  • ben.alexander.16144 - 2012-10-30 09:14

    Zapiro will kick some a$$ ....... how pathetic that this is more important than debating what is happening in SA with the DA......slip sliding away, slip sliding away SA.......

  • sharmay.thuynsma - 2012-10-30 09:15

    so Zuma want to debate with Zapiro and not Helen Zille? what is the purpose of this?

      gary.desousa.7 - 2012-10-30 09:17

      Comedy central casting time

      ben.alexander.16144 - 2012-10-30 09:20

      Zuma to get a Roast??

      art5SA - 2012-10-30 09:30

      Ya think they might ask John Vlismis to be the intermediatry?

  • alaina.robbertse - 2012-10-30 09:15

    Zapiro is right.You just want to score points.I told you Zapiro is the clever one.What about Zille?Scared of her i believe.She will win the debate hands down....

  • tolo.maano - 2012-10-30 09:16

    If I remember clearly ZILLE she is da 1 whose in for challenge presidency please do so by debate with zapiro zuma alone

  • thapelo.maleka.94 - 2012-10-30 09:17

    chicken licken

      sigilasanga - 2012-10-30 09:27


      art5SA - 2012-10-30 09:30

      KFC..... ROFLMAO!!!!

      thapelo.maleka.94 - 2012-10-30 11:30

      non halaal but spicy

  • customdesign - 2012-10-30 09:18

    I think he would have done better debating with Zille, Zapiro will take him apart

  • suash - 2012-10-30 09:21

    Our president is with out a doubt an utter imbecile. He would rather debate with a cartoonist than his number 1 opposition. He's a coward and a sore loser. Zapiro must of struck a nerve with his cartoons for Shower Cap to wake up from his high horse and challenge him to a debate.

  • marc.ross.965 - 2012-10-30 09:21

    "by "ingrained prejudices" about African male sexuality." Lets see what Census results (released today) do to dispell these ingrained prjudices. My bet is the population now tops 50million in a country with 16million people receiving gov. grants

  • Shane Prins - 2012-10-30 09:21

    stupid buffoon zuma has time for this crap, but just ask him to debate policies that affect the country he is clueless,..bloody ape

  • beverly.young3 - 2012-10-30 09:22

    I WOULD PAY TO SEE THIS. oh wow..............IMAGINE, if you can, the cartoon Zapiro is going to produce about this.....hoo hooo hoo Seriously, it is sad to understand, the total ignorance that the subjects of cartoons, have about the 'skits'. i.e the present government. They simply do not see that the depictions are so on the nial, so amazing, more so than the 'word'....sure even 'he' has heard that a picture tells a thousand tales?? ho ho ho

      beverly.young3 - 2012-10-30 09:23

      sorry about the typos, so excited ...

  • robin.bradley.9803 - 2012-10-30 09:23

    So now you want to debate a cartoonist??? How about you debate the opposition you rapist/thief...

  • rob.gunning.1 - 2012-10-30 09:25

    The ANC can only debate satirical issues, not real issues. I mean FFS, you can't debate with a politician so you choose to debate with a cartoonist... ANC, you really are the bottom of the barrel scum.

  • antjie.vanstraaten - 2012-10-30 09:25

    Maharaj, I do hope he take you on because the bloody racists in this country are black and ANC. You don't believe me? Go and look at your laws you old fool.

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-30 09:26

    NO, we the people want to see Zuma and Zille. Zoomer have already lost the Zapiro issue, so there is no value in such a debate.

      beverly.young3 - 2012-10-30 13:49

      Oh you are soooo right.

  • darryl.maze1 - 2012-10-30 09:27

    Zuma needs to learn how to debate so he thinks Zapiro will be easy. Mr Zuma is just gonna get torn apart. He'll need little Macboy to hold his hand. It just shows you how pathetic the president is, He'll debate against a cartoonist but not Helen Zille where there are more important things. It just proves our president is more worried about himself than the ppl.

  • Matthew - 2012-10-30 09:27

    So.....ANC/Zuma is too scared to take on DA's challenge to public debate, but hey,they'll sure as hell take on a cartoonist. this is too funny. Flipping circus here in R.S.A

  • rhett.deklerk - 2012-10-30 09:28

    So the ANC reckons it can't debate with the DA in a publice environment about concerning issues however sitting around planning a public debate about cartoons specifically created to encourage either laughter or offence is the way to go?\r\n\r\nWonder if they will be debating all his work or perhaps they do enjoy the depictions just not when it's at \home\ base...

  • John Badenhorst - 2012-10-30 09:29

    While we are at it, lets invite Walt Disney to the debate too...LMFAO...Zuma will get his a$$ kicked by Zapiro...AND any such debate must be broadcast LIVE with a LIVE studio editing to be done...then we let Zille finish him up...everyone in favour say...Hell Yeah!!!

      Stlouis Heidtmann - 2012-10-30 09:39

      hell yeah

  • klasie.kitshoff - 2012-10-30 09:31

    Why did not they debate it in court?

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-10-30 09:31

    How about Zapiro does the Mac thing, but the looser have to run naked through Pollsmoore at tea time?

  • John Badenhorst - 2012-10-30 09:36

    I do so hope Zapiro takes on the Challenge...i would pay good money to sit right there...showerhead is so scared of Zille...bloody coward...i can only imagine the cartoon thats going to come out of this one...

  • richard.zanner - 2012-10-30 09:36

    Oh so now he wants debate but does not have time to debate with Zille. What an arse.

  • auntie.lebo - 2012-10-30 09:39

    Lol bad idea! He should be taking on helen zille or malema lol not some cartoonist... He's so stupid! Ugh

  • roy.wadhams.1 - 2012-10-30 09:40

    Go for it Zapiro and while you are debating tell these maaifoedies exactly what the country thinks of them,specially Zuma,and their "morals". What a bunch of money grabbing thieves the whole ANC is.

  • colleencramage - 2012-10-30 09:43

    President Zuma please tell me you are joking. You won't debate with Helen Zille, but you will take on a satirical cartoonist who is brilliant at reading you. wow. Has our president lost it. or maybe he never had it.

  • karel.dutoit.50 - 2012-10-30 09:44

    Why should anyone accept any challenge to a debate from the 'presidency' it they refuse debates on subjects that actually matter? Shame on the presidency. They actively what to stop satire but refuse to talk about delivering textbook on time for the final exams?

      beverly.young3 - 2012-10-30 13:52

      One has to try and imagine the conversation? WIll Zuma ask a question and expect and answer? Or will there be a script? ..."eeeerrrr..Mr Zipo, why do make me so ugly, what have I done to you?" I so hope this happens.

  • mfanah.radebe - 2012-10-30 09:45

    When will that debate take place?\r\nI like S.A our laws ''freedom of speech''how nice

  • kingkongVB - 2012-10-30 09:46

    you dont go to a fight armed with a shower. trust me

  • ringo.fung.54 - 2012-10-30 09:46

    zuma won't know which head to listen to!!

  • Michael - 2012-10-30 09:48

    Zuma withdrawal of charges has actualy weaken Zapiro future cartoons, Zuma is actualy saying to Zapiro, i dont care anymore, you can continue with your racist actions as far as you want. I think this is the best ever stratergy employed by Zuma againts Zapiro, Zuma 1; Zzpiro 0:

      colleencramage - 2012-10-30 09:53

      Actually I think it will give Zapiro more impetus to be able to draw political satire including the prez and I doubt that he would restrain himself at all now. GO Zapiro.

      Brian Dorning - 2012-10-30 10:08

      Racist cartoons? Clown! The cartoons are based on actions of people and the state of government and the economy. It just so happens that the blundering people in power happen to be of colour....furthermore black people aren't the only people that have been the target of his cartoons...

      Michael - 2012-10-30 10:20

      Zuma must protect Zapiro freedom of expression, this including freedom of being racist, i dont buy the story that Zapiro cartoons are not driven by racism, this guy called Zapiro is the biggest racist the country has ever had, and unfortunately most of you including Zapiro himself dont know that he is one. The thing is if you steal, you are called a thief, and you your behaviour has elements of racism, allow us to call you as such.

  • gerrit.vanpletzen - 2012-10-30 09:53

    This is typical of Zuma and the ANC. They refuse to engage in debate with the opposition regarding national issues, but Zuma has enough time to take on Zapiro? What a coward! What a caricature of a president! What a disgrace to the country!

  • whatda.fuqbro - 2012-10-30 09:54

    As long as it's on a neutral public platform (read: not on SABC) where the ANC can't manipulate the recording for their benefit, then yes it'll be interesting. Not sure how Zapiro's debating skills, political knowledge and detailed factual knowledge are but it shouldn't take much to take on an imbecile of such a calibre. ENCA should step in and offer a slot and location for the debate.

  • sefohlelo - 2012-10-30 09:55

    Let's not Divert the Real Challenges that faces Mzansi to cheap Political Points Scoring Mr Presidential Spokesperson...what are we gonna gain in that Debate as the Citizens of Mzansi?We need to hear about the future of the Country in Real Debates like the one with DA Leader H. Zille,Zuma is going for the Second Term,now is the time for him to give us his plans and defend them on a Public Platform against his Opposition Number.

  • edwardsch - 2012-10-30 09:57

    Jonathan, Accept on condition that Zuma is the other party and not one of this henchmen/spun doctors. Let him stand up and hold a debate with you and let's all see just what an idiot he really is!!!!!

      edwardsch - 2012-10-30 09:58

      Should read SPIN DOCTORS !!!!!!!!!

  • Nkhangwe - 2012-10-30 09:58

    The only public debate that the president initiated but i think is not for the public interest,is about two individuals with personal grudges,i will prefer a debate that will help our country improve in educations systems,economically.etc,i once read moeletsi Mbeki views on south African future,why cant presidency called a public debate with him??i reckon will have benefits for our country.

  • bridget.s.pienaar - 2012-10-30 09:58

    Ooh goody. Can't wait. R50 on a loss for the presidency...

  • dolphindunes.guesthouse - 2012-10-30 09:59

    Ok....rather debate with a cartoonist than the opposition leader. I think the lady scares you Jakob Regop

  • thomas.g.loeser - 2012-10-30 10:00

    Please don't let this go out to the rest of the world!!!!

  • ruanpretorius1980 - 2012-10-30 10:02

    But the presidency do not want to debate Ms. Zille? How ironic!

  • mbambo.shi - 2012-10-30 10:02

    How ironic, that a debate intended to shape our motherland economically was turned down. A debade that was gonna instill knowledge to Zuma's thick skull and his combrates, like Gwede or Wac Maharaj and also lure investors. Now a debate to pull race-card is on the way. Our beloved ANC is taking one step forward and two steps back, and for that, all thanx you Nkandla parasite, Zuma himself. As I once said, ''South Africa under The Spear, being chief in command, is the Zimbabwe of tomorrow''. NXAAAAA!!!!!.