All speeches were cancelled at South Africa’s main May Day event in Bloemfontein on Monday. President Jacob Zuma was expected to address the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu). The unrelenting crowd sang anti-Zuma songs, which escalated when the president arrived at Loch Logan Park. In an unprecedented move, after several failed attempts by provincial leaders to calm the crowd, Cosatu announced an end to the event with no speeches delivered. This comes after some Cosatu affiliates told the mother body that Zuma was not fit and proper to lead the country and having him speak at the Workers’ Day rally would send a “confusing message”.
Spokesperson Zizi Kodwa defended the ANC’s decision to deploy Zuma to the Worker’s Day event despite calls by Cosatu affiliates that he should be replaced by deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa.
Senior ANC officials were also booed at a May Day rally in Durban.
ZUMA MUST LISTEN TO THE TRIPARTITE ALLIANCE AND RESIGN
Issued by Dennis Bloem, Cope spokesperson via facebook
What a big embarrassment for Mr Jacob Zuma. It is for the first time in the history of Cosatu May Day rally celebrations that the ANC and the country’s president are heckled and not allowed to address the workers.
What the country witnessed today at the Cosatu’s main Workers’ Day rally in Bloemfontein is once again prove and evidence that Zuma, single handedly, destroyed not only the ANC but the entire Congress Alliance.
This is certainly a huge embarrassment for Zuma, but a victory for those affiliates and workers who insisted that Zuma is not welcome at their rally and will not address them. This is a very clear and loud message to Zuma that his time is up.
Zuma must understand and know that Sdumo Dlamini will not save him from the demand of Cosatu and SACP that he must resign. Not even the Guptas will save him from the power of the workers. Zuma must just resign and go spend his retirement days on his farm at Nkandla!
— Justice Malala (@justicemalala) May 1, 2017