The knives were out in full force on Sunday when Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane took several jabs at President Jacob Zuma, even comparing him to the likes of a “racist” Hendrik Verwoerd – commonly referred to as the architect of apartheid.
Addressing a DA August 3 municipal elections “We can win” rally in Missionvale in Port Elizabeth in support of DA Nelson Mandela Bay mayoral candidate Athol Trollip, Maimane lambasted President Jacob Zuma, saying he was disturbed by the president’s “ugly head of impunity”.
“Zuma still believes in separate development. In his world black people must be on this side and white people on that side. In his world he says he cannot understand why black people would be in the DA, because Zuma thinks black people are not clever. He is no different to what Verwoerd thought of black people,” Maimane said.
While on the campaign trail recently, Zuma said he did not understand why black people chose to vote for the DA, adding that the party had lost its identity and was trying to attract black voters, despite initially having been a predominantly white party.
On Sunday, Maimane described Zuma as the epitome of perpetuating an apartheid South Africa by using apartheid laws to “justify his corruption”.
“There is only one person that is missing apartheid and that person is Jacob Zuma. He seems to be so in love with apartheid. We didn’t believe it when we started asking him things about Nkandla and he started saying no you can’t investigate Nkandla; drawing from the world of apartheid laws such as the National Key Points Act to justify his corruption. He is so corrupt that he has to remember apartheid to justify his corruption,” said Maimane.
Zuma was relying on “racism to advance the ANC”. “Imagine, a movement birthed out of non-racialism has a leader today that has to advance racism. He has no vision for South Africa, the only vision he has is for the Gupta’s, Shaun Abrahams [National Prosecuting Authority head], and Hlaudi Mtsoeneng [SABC COO].”
Maimane quoted several struggle icons, including Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo, and Steve Biko, saying that the ANC no longer represented their dream of bringing South African citizens together.
“It’s so bad when all the former leaders of the ANC and former president, none of them are willing to wear the ANC shirt with Jacob Zuma’s face on it. Even [former president] Thabo Mbeki won’t campaign for Jacob Zuma because he knows he will not be campaigning for freedom, he will be campaigning for a divisive man who is no different than [former apartheid president] PW Botha,” he said.
“Chris Hani [slain SA Communist Party leader] said that there will come a day that liberators will drive around in Mercedes Benz and live in fancy houses. I think Chris Hani was speaking about Jacob Zuma, who now lives in fancy houses and drives fancy cars. Jacob Zuma should be in jail. I hope they build a cell next to Oscar Pistorius.
“Steve Biko said that the most powerful weapon of the oppressor is the mindset of the oppressed. Jacob Zuma does not believe that it’s possible for black people to lead white people. He does not believe that white people and black people can come together. So whose mindset is oppressed? I think Jacob Zuma’s mindset is still oppressed because when I look out here I see South African’s who are free, free to make a choice,” Maimane told the cheering crowd.
Maimane said he would return to Nelson Mandela Bay post-elections to slaughter a cow in celebration of “victory”.
Trollip, who spoke before Maimane, also took a jab at Zuma for calling DA members snakes at an ANC “Siyanqoba” rally in Zwide in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
“We know who the snakes are and it’s not us”, said Trollip. The DA would win Nelson Mandela Bay because people were tired of a Zuma ANC filled with “lies and corruption”.
“Arrogant denial has made them [ANC] turn nasty. I believe they have gone mad… we have outnumbered our political opposition in every debate, every meeting. We have outsmarted them. The DA is the future and the ANC is the past,” said Trollip.