NEWS

Civil Society Organisations Are Getting Serious About Bringing Down Zuma And The Guptas

Protests, campaigns and a boycotting of Gupta-linked businesses are planned by more than 100 groups.

18/07/2017 17:24 SAST | Updated 18/07/2017 20:03 SAST

Civil society organisations have resolved to host widespread protest action and campaigns targeted specifically at the ANC and its president, Jacob Zuma, as well as the Gupta family.

These were some of the decrees that emerged out of the Conference for the Future of South Africa on Tuesday, when more than 100 civil society institutions gathered to discuss political issues affecting the country, with particular emphasis on state capture and corruption.

Speaking after five commissions were held to discuss, among others, legal and constitutional interventions and the role of Parliament and public servants in eradicating state capture, Ahmed Kathrada Foundation director Neeshan Balton said campaigns will be held up to August 8 and into 2019.

Parliament is expected to vote on a motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma on August 8.

"We have heard of a band of predators with insatiable greed who have captured our state to serve their crooked deeds...who act with impunity because of a compromised criminal justice system and weakened law enforcement agencies," Balton said, reporting back on the outcome of the commissions.

The conference resolved to:

  • Hold demonstrations outside Parliament and across the country under the banner of civil society; not political parties.
  • Boycott businesses who transact with the Gupta family and campaign to remove Gupta-owned broadcaster ANN7 from DSTV.
  • Establish a small body to act as a representative of all civil society organisations involved and source funds to support their campaigns.
  • Take a delegation to Police Minister Fikile Mbalula to promote the protection of whistleblowers and argue for a consultative process in appointing a new chief of police and head of the National Prosecuting Authority.

Balton said although some of the proposed legal steps in combating state capture need to be checked to verify their legitimacy, the conference has decided to review electoral laws, take disciplinary action against lawyers involved in corruption and campaign for transparency in political funding and procurement.

Delegates demanded that Zuma should step down immediately; Chapter 9 institutions be protected; state capture be rooted out; the oversight role of Parliament be strengthened; state-owned enterprises be cleaned up and a national dialogue on an inclusive economy be established.