Johannesburg – Hundreds of MK Veterans and ANC Youth League (ANCYL) members have taken it upon themselves to guard Luthuli House in case there were any threats from anti-Zuma marchers or supporters.
The march is one of many planned around the country after President Jacob Zuma’s cabinet reshuffle last week during which Pravin Gordhan was fired as finance minister, prompting an investment status downgrade to “junk” by ratings agency Standard and Poor’s.
Chanting and marching around the area, the MK Veterans sang struggle songs and called for locals to support the President from just after 5am.
One veteran who asked to stay anonymous said he would give his life to protect Zuma and the ANC.
"We cannot have these people come here and tell us that Zuma must go. He is our president and he was elected freely and fairly by the people – to go against him is an act of treason," the veteran said.
He added that they will continue to fight for the ANC and will not allow these "small boys" to cause chaos within the ruling party.
"The ANC is here to stay and President Zuma is here to stay, he is our president and we will always protect him and the party," the MK Veteran said.
An ANCYL supporter who only identified herself as Thandeka said she would continue to protest for Zuma until the opposition gave up.
"We are not here to play. President Zuma is my president and I will not allow anyone to say otherwise.
"These people who are against him must stop it or it will destroy this country," she warned.
Many of the supporters were dressed in ANC regalia, T-shirts and carrying ANC flags.
The two groups marched around Luthuli House several times before coming to a stop and standing at attention outside the ANC's Headquarters.
Commuters and passers-by made concerted efforts to stop and watch the passing parade, taking out their cellphones and capturing the moments.
"It's quite historical, I'm a little bit scared for what might happen today, I just hope it doesn't get violent," said one passer-by, Daniel Twala.
"People must protest and have their voices heard, whether they are for or against Zuma, everyone has the right to protest but it just must not get violent. We can't start killing each other over one man," he said.
Singing and chanting continued throughout the morning as the group slowly began to swell in size.
Lots of people have been driving past including busses and taxis hooting in support of the MK Veterans and ANC.