On Tuesday afternnon, 16 February 2016, Economic Freedom Fighters Commander in Chief Julius Malema not only undressed the sitting president, he made serious allegations against him and Minister Fikile Mbalula.
He unashamedly reminded the country and the world that Zuma once slept with an HIV positive woman without protection and impregnated the daughter of a friend.
More seriously, Malema basically accused Zuma of orchestrating the recall of president Thabo Mbeki in an episode bordering on treason. Malema further implicated himself in the plot and announced that calling him from a circumcision school, Mbalula pleaded with him not to play any part in the dethroning of Mbeki. The embattled president listened to Malema in disbelief as the CIC threw one insult after another at the head of state. The ANC benches were so quiet you would swear the ANC members were not in the honourable House.
The dignity, honour and serenity of the National Assembly has taken a serious knock since the helmeted red berets invaded the place in 2014. Small in number, they are large in presence. Not only do they punch above their weight, they have reduced the much larger official opposition to midgets on the scale of things. They are outwitting and outsmarting the ruling party. With its big majority in parliament, the ANC simply does not know what to do with the boisterious and rampaging red mob.
The parliament of the Republic of South Africa has become the playground of the aggressive and unruly red mob. Most people look at the scenes in parliament and wonder what really happened. What happened is all too clear. Julius Malema is the creature of the ANC. President Jacob Zuma, more than any ANC leader, must take responsibility for the creation of this monster.
It was Zuma who said nothing when the ANCYL president shocked the country when he chillingly bellowed that “we will kill for Zuma.” It was Zuma who told an audience in Malema’s hometown of Seshego that the young man was destined to inherit the organisation. It was Zuma who enjoyed it when Malema spewed bile at Thabo Mbeki, the president of the ANC and the country. The chickens have come home to roost.
Today president Jacob Zuma is a weak and embattled head of state who has lost the trust of the people of South Africa because of his poor judgement and multiple indiscretions. Nkandla, Public Protector, SAA and Nene have compromised the once popular ANC leader. ANC leaders no longer believe in him mainly because when he takes critical decisions he does not consult them; the Van Rooyen episode is a case in point. Members of his party defend him in public and condemn him in private. At this stage in his political career is at the crossroads indeed.
The political future of Jacob Zuma hangs in the balance while the nation awaits the impending pronouncements of the Constitutional Court. The highly esteemed court is expected to save or hang Zuma. If they only pronounce on the powers of the Public Protector and the order for #paybackthe money Zuma will sleep well thereafter. However, should the issue a declaratory order that the president violated the constitution and oath office, Zuma’s days as head of state would be numbered.
Finally, president Zuma must understand that his presidency has been disastrous and must redeem himself by leading with integrity and distinction. His habit of not taking responsibility for his wrongdoings must come to an end. The tendency of claiming to know thing about matters relating to his decision-making must be a thing of the past. He must accept that he is a seriously flawed individual and do his best to leave us with some positive legacy other than Nkandla, immorality and the Guptas.
The president must understand that the management of the economy is the most important responsibility of a head of state. He must prove to all that he has not deployed his friends in business to raid state owned enterprises with gay abandon. He must reclaim the trust of the people of South Africa. He must also accept that the vulgarisation of parliament is possible because of his many follies and indiscretions. He must change for the sake of our beloved country. The EFF disrespects him because his difficult to respect; the EFF insults him because he provides them with the ammunition to do so; the EFF resents because of his many faults; the EFF denigrades him because he is so vulnerable to denigration.