Zuma cancels Free State walkabout

2012-01-05 14:23

Thaba Nchu - President Jacob Zuma cancelled his visit to Thaba Nchu in the Free State on Thursday morning, where he was due to interact with locals as part of the ANC's centenary programme.

The party's national executive committee (NEC) member Aaron Motsoaledi, who is also health minister, took over Zuma's programme, which would have included a visit to Thaba Nchu's minibus taxi rank and various wards in the town.

ANC spokesperson Keith Khoza said another NEC member, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa, would take over the other leg of the programme in Botshabelo, about 10km from Thaba Nchu, later in the day.

Party spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said he did not know the reason for the cancellation.

Zuma had been scheduled to arrive for his walkabout at 10:00. The few police officers waiting for him at the minibus taxi rank left after hearing he was no longer going to arrive.

Centenary celebrations

Many national ANC leaders are already in the province, going on door-to-door visits to encourage local party members to attend festivities for the party's centenary. ANC national executive committee members would visit all the regions in the Free State until Saturday. The main celebration would start on Friday.

On Saturday, there would be intercultural events at the Mangaung outdoor sports grounds and a music show featuring well-known South African DJs and artists.

Zuma would conclude the three-day event with his annual January 8 speech, in which he would pay tribute to struggle heroes and former presidents of the movement.

More than 100 000 people were expected to attend festivities in the province, where the South African Native National Congress was founded on January 8, 1912. It was renamed the African National Congress in 1923.

The party said all were welcome and no accreditation was needed. The army had been deployed to ensure security, particularly because of the 46 foreign heads of state who had confirmed their attendance. They included Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe, Nigeria's Goodluck Jonathan and Uganda's Yoweri Museveni.

It was still unclear if former president Nelson Mandela would attend.

  • Bozie - 2012-01-05 14:48

    What a pity! I have gathered a few loose join me at the taxi rank!

      Kacee - 2012-01-05 14:56

      What a pity, for a guy we pay R9000 a day you think he could at least come greet us?

      Bozie - 2012-01-05 17:47

      Sadly it won't happen Leonard. For those he is casting aside, the fear of a white ruled country is just too big. Don't stone me, but if Mrs. Zille would hand over to a black person, the DA will make some progress. But it is too soon after 1994 for my people to realise we are ruining ourselves by voting along these colour lines. I wish I could change that, but when I try, they accuse me of being as disrespectful as Malema. I'm just another obnoxious youth in their eyes.

  • Johan - 2012-01-05 14:49

    maybe the freestate sun is too hot today.

      Heinrich - 2012-01-05 15:24

      Time for a nice cool shower.

  • Rinnewien - 2012-01-05 14:49

    How can Mandella attend. He is old and frail! Leave him to spend his last days in peace. Stop bothering with nonsence!

      Alva - 2012-01-05 14:59

      Exactly! The ANC show him around like a trophy to give their failing party some credibility!

      Bruce - 2012-01-05 15:55

      Damn cheek even asking him to come.

  • Nkulekweni - 2012-01-05 14:55

    Why the use of the conditional and past tenses...has this madness happened already...but then 8th January is in the future... Strange world, run by strange people. I hope one or two choke on their 50 yr old that would be a good story.

      Deon - 2012-01-05 15:25

      14h23. They spoke about this mornings visit (Thursday)

  • Deeteem - 2012-01-05 14:55

    Is the herd boy too aloof for the sheeple now ?

  • Alva - 2012-01-05 14:56

    Mad Bob Mugabe? Just goes to show the ANC don't really care about human rights! Wonder how many other despots are on the invitation list?

  • Msholozi - 2012-01-05 15:04

    im proud my leaders are doing good work im waiting for the election to vote for my president

      Blade - 2012-01-05 15:18

      I'm surprised that you can even spell ANC.

      Bruce Hutamo - 2012-01-05 15:51

      you are such a groupie... proud???? that he cancelled, you should be disappointed *walks away*

  • jurgen.eksteen - 2012-01-05 15:04

    I guess Zuma isn't use to the smells and sounds of the "common rabble" in his view. If he did do it, he would have walked around with his handkerchief in front of the mouth ... made famous by Michael Jackson of course.

  • Jan - 2012-01-05 15:22

    Zuma is ashamed of what he might see. The level of poverty in Thaba Nchu is very high. He does not want to face the reality of what his government is dong to people.

  • PaasHaas - 2012-01-05 15:26

    Wonder who is going to be issued the bullet proof vest and sent to Ficksburg?

  • Mike - 2012-01-05 15:30

    Of course he wouldn't as he could see the "results" of his failed government. @ News24 I am very keen to see who the other 46 head of states are? Right I do not see head of states; only dictators and tyrants!

      Beetroot - 2012-01-05 15:44

      In baseball it 3 strikes are you are out. In SA politics its 3000 strikes and you still dont go out!

  • Matema - 2012-01-05 15:36

    sory to those who wer expecting the president...hope u c hw relaible he is knw,cancelin wthout givn us a reason.

      PaasHaas - 2012-01-05 15:56

      Let me guess, you just got a distinction in English

      Bozie - 2012-01-05 16:11

      @Paas Haas Does it really matter? All that matters this moment is that she is seeing him for what he is and doesn't that give you a bit of hope?

  • Gerhard - 2012-01-05 15:56

    Of course he cancelled his walk about! Just now somebody might just ask him a question! How is he going to answer it without his speech writers there?

  • Lebza Dikgetsi - 2012-01-05 16:01

    Ill be attending Juju's rally tomorrow ill advise the disappointed community of thaba nchu to do the same.

  • afroduckk - 2012-01-05 21:43

    Bet he cancelled due to his 'NEXT WEDDING'.

  • John - 2012-01-06 11:26

    JZ's dys are numbered, you can't toy with the youth(they are the future leaders), Viva Julius Malema, Viva Shivambu,Viva Mabe,Maggie,Abner,Ramola,Sindiso,etc,etc and Viva our Dr Ngurare,Kapere,Siyauya,Likando,Kwenani,Shawana,etc etc and all those youths i did not mention, you control the SADC region cdes.

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