13/04/2017 07:26 SAST | Updated 13/04/2017 08:14 SAST

Zuma Unfazed By Calls For His Resignation

The president says stress is a white man's concept, and he will leave when the ANC wants him to leave.

James Oatway / Reuters
President Jacob Zuma addresses crowds gathered to celebrate his 75th birthday in Kliptown, Johannesburg, South Africa, April 12, 2017.

President Jacob Zuma has dismissed calls by the opposition for him to step down, according to The Times on Thursday. Zuma gave a lengthy speech at his 75th birthday celebrations in Kliptown, Johannesburg on Wednesday afternoon.

"I don't get stressed. Stress is a white man's disease and that is why the term 'stress' does not exist in isiZulu," Zuma reportedly said.

He also called on African National Congress members to ignore the opposition.

"Do not fear when the opposition speaks the way it does. They are doing their job to oppose what others do. If they don't deliver, they aren't doing their jobs," The Times quoted Zuma as saying.

The speech was organised by the ANC, and was branded in ANG regalia. Messages of support came from his allies in the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association, the ANC Youth League and the ANC Women's League. Speeches were also delivered by Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvulo Mokonyane, and social development minister Bathabile Dlamini. The only ANC top six member there was Jesse Duarte.

Zuma's address took place just hours after thousands marched on the Union Buildings in Pretoria calling for his resignation.

But Zuma is not going anywhere, because the ANC wants him to lead. However, Zuma reportedly said he would gladly go if the party demanded that he did so.

"Even if you tell me to resign tomorrow, I'll do so without any animosity."