Gunshots outside Nkandla despite high police presence

Duduzane Zuma works the crowd flanked by appeals MK veterans

Former president Jacob Zuma's son, Duduzane, takes to the streets in Nkandla on Sunday.
Former president Jacob Zuma's son, Duduzane, takes to the streets in Nkandla on Sunday.
Image: SANDILE NDLOVU

The streets of Nkandla were a hive of activity with former president Jacob Zuma’s supporters who came out in numbers yesterday – the last day on which he was supposed to hand himself to police to be directed to a prison where he would begin his 15-month sentence.

From morning till early evening, some of the streets remained inaccessible as the SA Police Service said it had “enhanced” its deployment of “security forces” in KwaZulu-Natal as large crowds flocked to Nkandla, in defiance of lockdown regulations.

The Constitutional Court found Zuma to be in contempt of court and sentenced him to 15 months.

He has since filed a rescission application and also wants the Pietermaritzburg high court to interdict his arrest, which the ConCourt ordered should be within three days if he fails to hand himself over to police. It lapses on Wednesday.

The national joint operational and intelligence structure (NatJOINTS) yesterday said in a statement that it had enhanced its operational capacity.

The statement came after, earlier in the day, it appeared officers stationed in northern KZN were unable to hold a roadblock to prevent convoys of defiant supporters from descending on his homestead.

Reporters covering an evolving situation at Nkandla reported crowds of people, many without masks, including Zuma and his son, marching together.

They reported that supporters also fired firearms mere metres away from Nkandla, an indication that some supporters were armed.

NatJOINTS spokesperson Brig Vish Naidoo said the enhancement of the security forces was in response to incidents “in which people are seen to be undermining the authority of the state, including the flouting of the DMA [Disaster Management Act] regulations”.

Zuma’s son, Duduzane, showed his face. 

Senior members of the ANC also arrived and met Zuma.

Zuma, joined by his legal team, including Adv Dali Mpofu SC, Amabutho (regiments of traditional Zulu warriors) and suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule, addressed his supporters. He thanked his supporters for standing by him and said they made him believe in his dream of reaching 100 years.

Zuma said the judgment handed down last week made him feel a need to start afresh and fight for freedom.

“You gave the nation hope that no one can be violated in our democracy. I was already thinking to myself that I will be wrestling with the police who will be coming to arrest me. But when I saw you, I then asked myself, how will the police reach me, how will they pass through such a crowd. I want to thank you for your support,” Zuma said.

Magashule

said there are people who wanted to “destroy the ANC”.

“If they disband you as a branch, you must still be a branch. When they expel you, you must still be a member of the ANC. You must not go anywhere..

” Magashule said.

“Anybody can join this structure because they have money. We don’t elect you to leadership because you have money.”

Zuma praised Mpofu and the rest of the team, saying they had ensured that he would sleep at home yesterday.

SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande has warned against the incitement of civil war, as often chaotic scenes played out in Nkandla.

He said MK veterans would not go around carelessly inciting violence and mobilising to undermine the very hard-won democratic transition that they fought for.

“Let the name of the MK not be allowed to be used to pursue what essentially is a counter-revolutionary agenda. We say this because we know what war is.

Masingadlali ngempi, ngoba impi iyabulala (let's not play with war, because war is deadly),” he said in isiZulu. - Additional Reporting Andisiwe Makinana

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.