National Shutdown March: Over 200 members of the ANC military wing – Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) – are currently standing in front of Luthuli House ahead of today’s national protest.
The veteran association has now made good the promise they made on Wednesday.
On Wednesday, the chairman of the association in KwaZulu-Natal Themba Mavundla announced that 600 “combat-ready” veterans will be deployed to Luthuli House to protect and defend President Zuma, the ANC, and Luthuli House.
This morning, at least 200 MKMVA members in their military fatigue were spotted singing struggle songs and marching up and down outside the ANC headquarters from as early as 6am after being bussed in with six buses, some from as far as Zululand.
— Bafana Nzimande (@nzimandebafana) April 7, 2017
Weighing in, MKMVA chairman Kebby Maphatsoe reiterated that the association cannot tolerate people who want to cause disruptions at the ANC headquarters, Luthuli House in Johannesburg.
He said Zuma usually goes to Luthuli House on Fridays, where he holds a meeting with his party members, hence, the reason why veterans have been positioned for his safety.
“We are going to make sure the staff is protected and safe. Also, that they are able to carry out the work that they need to do in preparation for the upcoming national policy conference. We have no time to waste on unnecessary marches that attempt to oust the president before his time,” Maphatsoe added.
— Ditaba Tsotetsi (@tsotetsiditaba) April 7, 2017
On Wednesday, Maphasoe had warned “Twitter Warriors” to bring it on to Luthuli House on Friday – a message many perceived as a prove of the veterans’ readiness.
Twitter Warriors let's meet at Luthuli House on Friday pic.twitter.com/7EI76KNqSe
— Kebby Maphatsoe (@KebbyMKCadre) April 5, 2017
DA leader, Mmusi Maimane, is set to lead a “March for Change” through the streets of the Johannesburg city centre on Friday.
The aim of the march is to impose a compulsory resignation on President Jacob Zuma for his latest controversial cabinet reshuffle.
On Tuesday – after threats of violence – the DA changed its plan to march to Luthuli House. The DA will today march to Mary Fitzgerald Square in Johannesburg.
Yesterday, South Africans planning to participate in the National Shutdown march were urged to be responsible and ensure their actions are non-political, non-racist, non-sexist, peaceful and not disruptive.
They were also reminded that “Everyone has the right, peacefully and unarmed, to assemble to demonstrate, to picket and to present petitions”, according to Section 17 of Chapter 2, of The Bill of Rights.
Marchers were told to wear white or something with the South African flag on it. And to also bring their flags and make their own posters.
As suggested by the organizers, some of the messaging on the posters can bear the following: Yes We Will, Recall Parliament, Don’t Junk SA, Zuma must Go, and No to the Nuclear deal.
Community members were advised to also join these human chains in Cape Town on Friday from 10:00 am for the April 7 National Shutdown March.
- Human chain along key main roads into the Cape Town CBD
- Along the main road from Simonstown into the Cape Town CBD
- Along Voortrekker road from Bellville into the Cape Town CBD Along the west coast road into Marine Parade Drive into the Cape Town CBD from Atlantis
- Along Jakes Gerwel drive down Kipfontein road into the Mowbray Main road from Mitchell’s Plain.