Crowds gather in South Africa to demand departure of president Zuma


April 3,2017

Demonstrations demanding the ousting of South African president Jacob Zuma are expected to kick off across the country today.

A social media campaign dubbed #BlackMonday that went viral at the weekend called on South Africans to take to the streets donning black to protest against Zuma’s controversial cabinet reshuffle last week.

The scandal-hit president, whose administration has been beset by allegations of corruption and incompetence, replaced a number of ministers – including the well-respected finance minister Pravin Gordhan – with loyalists in what has been perceived as a bid to consolidate his power.

While the move may free his hand to implement popular policies, it has done little to allay widespread perceptions of corruption and illegitimacy, calm the rift within his party – the African National Congress – or stoke confidence in the economy.

Corruption Watch, one South African NGO that has supported the #BlackMonday protests, stressed that the target of the reshuffle was control of the treasury and other financial institutions of the state.

It called for another motion of no-confidence against Zuma: “The events have clearly established that renewal will not come from within the ranks of the ruling party, which has been captured by a narrow clique around the president and his corrupt business cronies.”