Zille calls for Zuma debate

2012-10-15 18:30

Johannesburg - DA leader Helen Zille has called on President Jacob Zuma to engage with her in a public debate on the state of the economy.

"I will today be writing to President Zuma, calling for a public debate," she said in a statement.

"All South Africans are presently deeply concerned about the state of our country, and particularly our economy."

The presidency was not immediately available to confirm that Zuma had received Zille's request.

The Democratic Alliance leader said Zuma had not proved himself worthy of leading the country in the wake of escalating labour protests and the downgrading of the country's credit rating.

"The last few months will be remembered as one of the most trying times in our democratic history and yet President Zuma has not offered the leadership that South Africans expect from a president," she said.

"We cannot continue to muddle through a slow economic decline with more people becoming unemployed and poor people becoming steadily poorer."

Zille said the DA's growth and jobs plan, if implemented, would help the country's economy to grow and create "shared prosperity in a climate of policy certainty".

"The president has not done the same. He is completely silent on economic policy... and we have heard no serious positioning statement from him or his government on the current state of our economy," she said.

"What is his plan to prevent further downgrades and ensure future upgrades to our credit rating? What is his position on the illegal strikes which have killed innocent people and threaten our entire mining industry? Does he have a plan at all?" she asked.

  • kevin.jacobs.1044 - 2012-10-15 18:40

    unfair - he will not debate, but giggle.

      francois.smith.7 - 2012-10-15 18:41

      And ask Zille to sleep with him.

      kim.buren - 2012-10-15 19:02

      LOL, this debate will beat any comedy show. I will bring the popcorn and beer

      Rabbler.Rouser - 2012-10-15 19:08

      He will read his debate from a script and then look like a lost fart with a mouth full of teeth.

      boltonbarry - 2012-10-15 19:16

      Zuma will probably see it as speed dating

      junaid.vanderwalt - 2012-10-15 19:20

      Should this happen, she's gonna be his 5th wife this coming December.

      irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-10-15 19:27

      He's not capable of debate. Why do you think Zoooomer and Fatboy always run away whenever they're challenged.

      raymond.romans.5 - 2012-10-16 07:32

      You can't debate with your script writer sitting next to you. Too lengthy.

      amelia.basson - 2012-10-16 16:52

      Hehe ... Stupid is as stupid does!

  • JanGrimbeek - 2012-10-15 18:44

    And Me Zille, please make sure that he don't get your questions beforehand, also it should be televissed on all SABC and PRIVATE TV channels, including BBC and CNN, surely if malema could get a BBC and CNN spot you are also entitled to one on an important matter. I am looking forward to this for sure !!!

      JanGrimbeek - 2012-10-15 18:47

      Live TV broadcast that is... not rehearsed or delayed !

      desertratbkf - 2012-10-15 19:02


      kolobe.mzansi.7 - 2012-10-15 21:47

      will debate the day she wins the elections

      alan.gernet - 2012-10-16 12:10

      that's really intelligent Kolobe. Do I spot a bit of sheep mentality somewhere folks?

  • Gill McCain - 2012-10-15 18:45

    Hell will freeze over before Zuma agrees to ever debate with anyone, because let's face it he could not argue his way out of a paper bag.

  • 0001000ghost - 2012-10-15 18:46

    I am ashamed to call JZ my president, and I'm amazed at how most of the ministers got their jobs in he first place. The South African government is like a money pony - everyone gets a ride. Further more have you seen most of what public servants look like? Slow moving, and lethargic!

      irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-10-15 19:28

      And the ignorant masses will keep voting for them. Defies belief but proves that they're wired differently and don't have any ability for logic or reason.

      reba.moroeng - 2012-10-15 22:45

      @irene Why should these ignorant masses vote for a party which doesn't have a presence and doesn't campaign in the areas they live?It's as simple as that.Even the so called cANCer,with it's huge media coverage all year round,knows it still has to campaign in the areas they hope to win.

      christian.g.lee - 2012-10-15 22:58

      @reba.moroeng - I beg to differ. If you follow the South African political spectrum of ALL parties, Zille and various provincial sections of the DA have been visiting the 'masses' - for years actually. After being accused of not doing so, they've made a point of assuring media coverage when they do, in the last year. I recall various reports where Zille went to the poorest of poor, sometimes for weeks on end, and spoke to the people. The masses simply have no interest in the DA because the stigma of it being an all-white party (a lie, as much as the lie that the ANC is an all-black party) still sticks in these areas. Terribly sorry to inform you, I have no idea where you live/where your research comes from, but it unfortunately isn't correct, factually. Opinions are opinions, but facts have proof, and there's ample proof that of their visibility in rural areas across SA, particularly in the townships surrounding Gauteng - where they constantly get falsely accused of not being active.

  • sandor.l.varga - 2012-10-15 18:47

    Never will happen. ANC can not allow it. Zuma won't understand any of the issues and his singing and dancing won't work against a highly intelligent DA leader. Maybe Ms Zille must challenge some educated person from the ANC.

      lacrimose.wolf - 2012-10-15 19:11

      It's worse than that. ANC has often turned down similar challenges to debate issues because they don't have to explain themselves to anyone. The fact is they cannot, but that's a tiny distinction that most voters don't comprehend

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-15 20:03

      @sandor. "Maybe Ms Zille must challenge some "educated" person from the ANC." Overstatement of the milenium, do you know one ??

      rowan.clark.10 - 2012-10-15 22:40

      Man alone, what are your thoughts or mandate ?.The silence game can create illusions but we need proof and reassurance that we have a steady course or no course at all!!I know what your thinking,to many that is part of the problem !

      beverly.young3 - 2012-10-16 06:16

      The problem as I see it, is that Zuma, and I agree with his lack of abilities to debate, is so disrespectful of women, he is more than likely affronted by the idea? His advisors, were more than likely horrified when the message came though. I am not sure if anyone saw the video clip of the current mayor of Johannesburg a few weeks ago? I actually thought it was a joke that someone was playing on the us. He COULD NOT SPEAK!! It was the freakiest thing I have ever seen. He kept rolling his eyes, smiling and saying, "madam speaker...errr...a broad spectrum....errrr" rolled eyes and repeated himself over and over again. Now imagine Zuma? No notes, and caught out on air by an intelligent, concerned woman, who needs questions answered for all of us. eish....anyway, as someone here remarked, I am sure he is oblivious of any problems....

  • louis.hager.12 - 2012-10-15 18:48

    Wishful thinking.

  • jerry.medina.756 - 2012-10-15 18:49

    The President is incapable of debating, and does not engage women in public. You have a better chance if you ask the President to decorate that underground bunker in Nkandla for you.

  • buti.lembe - 2012-10-15 18:51

    Zuma will never engage himself in public talk. He knows that he's one of the corrupt person in ANC.

  • desertratbkf - 2012-10-15 18:51

    It has to take the opposition to take action of the state of the nation! Spearhead, you need to stand upright, and take up the challenge! However, you dont have the balls to do this! They are attached to that single cell in that very thick cranium, which is again attached to one thing on your mind! We ALL know what that is! Take accountability, which you SO often preach! You are not worthy of even being called "Truly South African!" TAKE ON THE CHALLENGE! Coward!

  • Erna - 2012-10-15 18:51

    Helen- shame on you! You should pick on someone with the same intelligence as yourself. Remember he can't bring notes or Mac with him to the debate.

      desertratbkf - 2012-10-15 19:15

      Certainly not Mac. Both MM and Apple! Dont think it has the intelligence to even write!

      desertratbkf - 2012-10-15 19:51

      Witty! Im taking Mac Maharaj and Apple Mac! Zooooooooma doesn't have the intelligence to even right! Sorry, write!

  • waterloo.mathis - 2012-10-15 18:52

    It looks like South Africa have a new \Mitt Romney\... Unity and love is really needed in this country!

  • ndlovuvincent - 2012-10-15 18:54

    Madam Zille,thanks for your concern as a SA citizen and premier of the WC.Why don't u implement your growth plan in the WC and prove to us that it is going to work.U are a president there in the WC,do what u can,we will credit u for the job well done.To grab Zuma's attention is not going to gain u any votes of the black people nor lose u the white voters but good performance will.U have Lindiwe Mazibuko and others in the parliament,let them do what u want to do on your behalf.They are busy focusing on Mangaung at the moment,so u will not get that attention u deserve.Forget that u will ever get Zuma to come and talk about economy in the public debate as he does not know much about what u are talking about.

      Mzondi Wakwa Maqina - 2012-10-15 19:02

      Vincent you are stupid man. Or you afraid that everyone will see that JayZee is stupid?

      waterloo.mathis - 2012-10-15 19:04

      She fears that people won't credit her because people always look at the head of state who is in total control. If only Zille loves this country, she would started it already or even proposed it to the leading party.

      waterloo.mathis - 2012-10-15 19:07

      @Mzondi you should learn to respect other people's opinions. What you like is not going to be everyone's taste!

      Luke300 - 2012-10-15 20:35

      This dude is obviously unfamiliar with the successes in the WC. Another one pretending to know something he does not.... lol. He didn't listen to the AG finidngs either... hahahahahahaha

  • mark.a.fysh - 2012-10-15 18:54

    He is not competant enough to debate with Helen - and he knows it, his Party knows it and so does everyone else.

      Mzondi Wakwa Maqina - 2012-10-15 19:00

      Please Mr President do not accept that request. Zille will nail you to the wall because you are clueless and we will be exposed to the world that we are being lead by a fool.

  • craig.s.pepper - 2012-10-15 18:58

    Not a chance he will agree to a debate. He will screw anything with a hole, but does not have the nuts to face Helen Zille in a debate.

  • craig.drysdale.96 - 2012-10-15 19:00

    Helen. Your request will be declined. He simply cant understand your vocabluary let alone debate. This is not the USA or any other 1st world country. You don't become president because you understand economics or are qualified to do the job. This is Africa. It's about understanding corruption and the ability to exploit the uneducated masses. Having said this, I would love to see the debate happen.

  • jacques.stander - 2012-10-15 19:02

    Will pay to see that !!

      desertratbkf - 2012-10-15 19:09

      Will sell my house! Bigger than the current US campaign! Or even the "Worlds Funniest!"

  • peter.strydom.37 - 2012-10-15 19:03

    Ms Zille, the plan is as follows, "We can continue to muddle through a slow economic decline with more people becoming unemployed and poor people becoming steadily poorer." What part of this don't you understand - its a process of fools and horses!

  • gavin786 - 2012-10-15 19:10

    No prrrobbblemmm e' .. this debate on the 'e'conomic' .. must be held in zulu .. ne' .. ;)

      andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-15 19:48

      ha ha brilliant

      dean.polley.3 - 2012-10-15 19:59

      Why not in Xhosa? Zille will still talk in circles around him!

  • faith.leburu - 2012-10-15 19:11

    Lol. Man let everyone take sick leave if Zuma agrees to the debate coz we will all be suffering from stomach cramps coz of laughing. Joh I hope we have enough corn and hobs for such a nice stand up comedy- Popcorn and beer frenzy. Heheheh!

  • waterloo.mathis - 2012-10-15 19:11

    The motive behind this debate is not to develop SA's economy, but to win votes. It's remarkable!

  • tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-10-15 19:13

    He will chicken at the invitation and won't agree to the debate. He knows that he doesn't have the intellect to debate at that level. He's a clown just like his friend, Malema.

      faith.leburu - 2012-10-15 23:15

      Lol. Tsietsi did you see just now on the news blog Zuma declined the debate... Check it out-

  • lekkeperd.chevyss - 2012-10-15 19:15

    Vat hom Tannie- Ons staan agter jou!!!

  • ad.madock - 2012-10-15 19:17

    He will never accept the challenge cos they not on the same level. Instead he will send Tony Ehrenreich who will again complain about bicycle lanes in Parklands and a piece of land in Rondebosch.

      Mzondi Wakwa Maqina - 2012-10-15 19:41

      Does he knows what debate means? All he knows best is name calling and character bashing.

      JohnB - 2012-10-16 05:29

      And dancing around his machine gun with his spear on display.

  • prakash.singh.169 - 2012-10-15 19:17


      smalefane - 2012-10-15 19:48

      When did he blame anything on apartheid? And what the heck is "wifes"?

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-15 20:17

      @busisiwe. Don't call him a kula you zot. This could be such a lovely "debate" amongst us here, but no always name calling. By the way isn't the word "kula" one of the top "don't say words" with the "K" word ??

      sakhile.gamede - 2012-10-15 20:32

      funny..hw the west alwayz complain,bt for an is a racial issue prakash not a fight for change..get it

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-15 21:01

      @sakhile.gamede. I had no idea that the west always complain, as I see it the "west" is laughing at us. You have it entirely wrong, you are making it a racial issue, and the issue at hand is exactly that "a fight for change" Git it ??

  • Jacques - 2012-10-15 19:18

    Someone will call her something quasi-funny like 'the coffee woman', we'll all make ironic referances to said quip for another 18 months and somewhere along the line someone will sue someone else for not liking their particular choice in song choice for their parties. And the debate will never happen. Welcome to SA.

  • ludwe.kolwapi - 2012-10-15 19:22

    Zuma will get crushed,he busy building his own hotel...he don't care about the economy period !

  • louis.hager.12 - 2012-10-15 19:23

    Helen he will drag you down to his level of moronic idiocy and beat you with experience. Anyway his go-to defence will be, \imperialists, racists, the struggle, forefather spirits, Verwoerd, the mines, the media, 3rd force, 3rd degree, Carte Blanche, and any and all he can throw under the bus.

  • john.s.stalwart - 2012-10-15 19:25

    Ms Zille wants to ridicule the country's president in public like that really? Had she have once asked for Mr Mbeki in such an engagement I would think it nice now but on the contrary Zuma's no match for such a debate and Ms Zille knows that. How can an intellect seek to engage with a non-scholar on intellectual matters if that's not to make him an international fool? Aniway it's on the sitting president's call to answer to the debate,let's see if he has what it takes,what a nice way to play politics rather than insulting one and another,let minds battle it out,the wise takes all votes.

      terrence.holtzhausen - 2012-10-16 01:56

      so well said :)

  • wendy.schneider3 - 2012-10-15 19:27

    PLEASE, PLEASE ............

  • Mtizozo Swartbooi - 2012-10-15 19:28

    zille wants to maket her own party.

      koketso.nkosi.9 - 2012-10-15 20:10

      totally agree mtizozo, she seeking attention. You cant beat them, u join them - anc 4 ever

  • Martha1234 - 2012-10-15 19:29

    It will turn into a dance off!

  • Luke300 - 2012-10-15 19:30

    He will never. The madam is too clever

  • sam.ntshangase - 2012-10-15 19:30

    As ANC member I think Zille is making a genuine point certainly agree with her for the following points: 1) Land is till in the hands of minority, practical scenario in Zim 2500 whites owned land after Mugabe shaken the world 6000 black farmers benefited, the land was annexed in the form of plots in order to benefit as much as they can. Guess what, in the previous fin yr these small black farmers made $350m, in 2011/12 they made $750m. 2) Marikana , Lonmin owned by Britons, the CEO is earning R25m pa yet workers are staying in pig style. 3) TBWAs contract was awarded by Zille to a non BEE credential company instead of empowering colored voters in the WCape. 4) AA policy is the biggest problem in the WCape recent report by Dept of Labour suggests so. Hellen Zille we are aware of inequality read report from Dept of Labour and the statement made by SG Gwede Mantashe on SA is an Irish Coffee

      andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-15 19:53

      Did you take that from a flyer that the ANC hand out at you KFC gatherings?

      dehlia.fredericks - 2012-10-15 20:47

      how many zim r in sa nd y? fleeing, cause brain has left, nw u wana do the same here!

      sam.ntshangase - 2012-10-15 20:53

      @kennywilliams, stop lying you were enriched by Job Reservation Act, you skelm, you think you are smart, if you worked your a&& off why complain now, filthy thief

  • hannah.p.mostert - 2012-10-15 19:32

    That is short sighted Waterloo.. Yes I agree with most people Zuma won't accept debate. And his followers will interpret it as rebuffing the whites, rather than the truth that he is a worthless leader, who is trying to steal the tribal title of king from goodwill..cause he thinks that will make him fabulous..poor uneducated fool

  • jackie.stone.501 - 2012-10-15 19:33

    She must debate with lindiwe first

  • amanda.matthews.14811 - 2012-10-15 19:35

    Sorry Helen, but JZ is already hunkered down in his newly built bunker safe and sound. Im afraid he cant hear you right now.

  • khethu.ndlovu.3 - 2012-10-15 19:35

    Poor zuma, a public debate? On economics nogal, malema yes but zuma its a confirmed decline. Debate about dancing and singing then it will be poor zille, the man is gonna crush you.

  • smalefane - 2012-10-15 19:36

    White supremacy rearing its ugly head again. There are no Democrats and Republican here. If you want public debate, then why not join American politics? Although downgrades should be a cause for concern, we do not need to panic. South African has a very stable economy.

      dean.polley.3 - 2012-10-15 19:47

      Dream on racist! The reasons why we will not have the kind of debates as in American politics is because we don't have a real democracy. We have a veiled dictatorship which fools most South Africans into believing we have a democracy, typically people like you.

      jerry.pres - 2012-10-15 19:57

      @smalefane Stable economy, LOL , you don't know what you are talking about. Litlle more stable as Zimbabwe, but don't worry we are catching them. And with your ability, I am sure, you will speed up process and we will catch their economy level soon.

      Erna - 2012-10-15 19:58

      You're right - white and female supremacy.

      nico.dejongh.90 - 2012-10-15 22:38

      A very stable economy indeed but at the same time you complain the whites sit with all the money. Yea Black stupidity is rearing its ugly head again. Debates .. well, if you can't convince with brilliance, try to baffle with works.. here.. no.. where else.

  • braamc - 2012-10-15 19:38

    He is to busy stealing tax payers money and money from the poor. Criminal

  • bongane.zwane.948 - 2012-10-15 19:38

    You want to take on big kop msholozi I can't wait to hear the out come of this trust me it gonna be ugly.

  • peter.mokoena.31 - 2012-10-15 19:39

    Sorry Madam Zille, no harm in trying the president can't debate. U have to be aware that he is running the country through his aides.Why do you think he is loosing the grip of the ANC as well.

  • jackie.stone.501 - 2012-10-15 19:42

    Now she thinks she is a presidential material. Perhaps she can debate with Julius and Floyd, they are on her level

      Erna - 2012-10-15 19:53

      She's definitely way above zuma's level. Remember he can't bring Mac with him.

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-10-15 20:24

      @Jackie. Be careful what you wish for.

      unforgetteble.cakes - 2012-10-15 20:45


  • les.cunningham1 - 2012-10-15 19:42

    Helen, go for it, he has done nothing for the country. What has he done during the mine strikes, and the reast that have now started? Nothing, except turn around and say that these strikes are hurting the RSA economy. Yes they are, but what is he doing about them, nothing. Come on Helen, take him on, he is useless. We need a leader like you lady.

  • andrew.surtees1 - 2012-10-15 19:43

    Go Zille, now watch this space! This will be a true leader in fashion and will show the country just how useless Zuma is and ask the right questions as why is the tax payers money been used for his own benefits and the fact that he is just not there for this country! I hope Zille points out the corruption points as to where all this money is going to and for what reasons, this is a man who said he took a shower after engaging in sexual activities with a girl(not a women yet) and said he had a shower in order to prevent himself from getting aids!This guy can't even write his own speeches out and barely read the ones that are given him! Mrs Zille you have my full support and I'm sure you are gonna gain the respect of many others and you leadership will be recognized! If the president turns down this debat, it will show his true colours and people will realize there is and never was a leadership in him at all, watch how he will have some excuse not to do this! He'll most likey say he is gonna be busy with some thing and if not he will pull out at the last moment somehow or another! People need to realize that leadership is not based on colour or wether its a female, the fact is if you can't run a country like you promise when it comes down to the facts!

  • busisiwe.kubeka1 - 2012-10-15 19:44

    Y not debate with Western Cape drug dealers,gangsters n prostitutes

      Erna - 2012-10-15 19:49

      Stupid commemt although they could probably do a better job than zuma!

  • nuus.reeder - 2012-10-15 19:44

    A nice chat is what is required.

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-10-15 19:45

    Helen he would not liked to be embarrassed further in public. Lindiwe would also be an excellent contender for a debate with any ANC cadre.

  • faith.leburu - 2012-10-15 19:47

    If Zuma agrees I want 3tons of popcorn and beer... I even want to watch it in 3D!

  • chiepner - 2012-10-15 19:47

    Hahahahaha or as Jacob will do - hehehehehehehe. Zuma will NEVER have a public debate and if it does happen the ANC will bus in their "rent-a-crowd" or "partners in crime" aka "tendertrepeneurs" to make sure that everything you say will either be drummed out by continues singing of "bring my machine gun" or "Zille go home your'e not welcome here" while Zuma will smile, do his little dance and NOT reprimand any of his supporters to allow a fair and level debate. Which ever way - it will either end up being a total farce, waiste of time or as I think - will just never ever happen.

  • Mike Mbongolo Purchase - 2012-10-15 19:56

    While i agree with Hellen she will never ever get through to a thick skull.