press release

By Dennis Bloem

The Gauteng ANC provincial structure wants Zuma to ‘do the right thing’. That is what an increasing number of people are also asking him to do. The Constitutional Court made a finding against Zuma that was too damning for him to continue in office.

The Chief Justice pointed out that Section “172(1)(a) impels this Court, to pronounce on the inconsistency and invalidity of, in this case, the President’s conduct and that of the National Assembly”. Accordingly, the court found that the “President’s failure to comply with the remedial action taken against him by the Public Protector is inconsistent with his obligations to uphold, defend and respect the Constitution as the supreme law of the Republic”. Furthermore, according to the apex court, Zuma also failed in his “duty to assist and protect the office of the Public Protector to ensure its independence, impartiality, dignity and effectiveness”. Zuma broke his oath of office.

The ANC structures have no power to negate the above finding. They cannot flout the Constitution and keep him in office. The only remedy for what he did is to vacate his office.

Zuma has no understanding of the Constitution. Neither had he any commitment to upholding it and defending it. This disqualifies him from being president of our constitutional dispensation.

Zuma will go on violating his oath of office. Soon after the Constitutional Court handed down its judgment, Zuma violated his oath of office yet again. Zuma remains incorrigible.

In a recently released statement by the National Association of Democratic Lawyers, it noted its “serious concern of the statements regarding the courts in South Africa made by President Jacob Zuma while addressing a gathering of traditional leaders”. In terms of the Constitution of South Africa, Nadel observed, the “president, along with all other organs of state, is obliged to assist and protect the courts, to ensure the independence, impartiality, dignity, accessibility and effectiveness of the courts through legislative and other means”. No matter how many times this is repeated, Zuma will not uphold the Constitution.

Even though Zuma met with Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng on August 27, 2015 to discuss attacks by ANC politicians on the judiciary and to find a way back to the constitutional path, Zuma remains defiant. His denigration of the courts is offensive to Nadel and to all who wish the Constitution to be upheld. As he goes on offending against the spirit and the letter of the Constitution, he has to go.

Provincial structures and the ANCWL can keep Zuma as President of the ANC. That is of no concern to us. However, by his continuous violation of the Constitution he has disqualified himself from continuing as the president of the country. The Constitutional Court found he had transgressed the supreme law of the land. He must therefore do the right thing as Gauteng ANC is requesting and many in society are urging and demanding.