Please Call Me movement members besiege Vodacom headquarters

Supporters of the #pleasecallme movement protesting outside the Vodacom Head Office in Midrand calling for Vodacom to pay Please Call Me inventor Nkosana Makate.
Supporters of the #pleasecallme movement protesting outside the Vodacom Head Office in Midrand calling for Vodacom to pay Please Call Me inventor Nkosana Makate.
Image: Thulani Mbele

Members of the #pleasecallme movement have vowed to unleash their wrath on Vodacom after the mobile network giant failed to reopen negotiations with Nkosana Makate by 10am on Thursday.

More than 200 people gathered at the company's Vodaworld headquarters in Midrand on Thursday, while calling for Makate to be paid R70bn for his "Please Call Me" invention.

Movement leader Modise Seotaba said they would intensify action against Vodacom after the company failed to meet the set deadline. The movement has called on all South Africans to boycott Vodacom products by cancelling their contracts and not paying for airtime advances.

"This is the day when a black man will die for economic freedom. I'm saying to Vodacom today, I'm willing to die for Mr Makate to get economic freedom," Setoaba said.

He said he had hoped that Vodacom would heed the call for the company to reopen negotiations with Makate.

"Instead, we are met by police who are here to protect private property," he said.

Setoaba said their committee would meet and draft a plan for a national shutdown of Vodacom outlets.

On Wednesday, Makate said he would go back to the high court to request that the compensation decided upon by Vodacom's CEO be reviewed. Makate said the amount, which he declined to disclose, was ridiculous.

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