National shutdown: Malema applauds members for ‘peaceful protest’

EFF members during the protest in Pretoria. Picture: Kamogelo Moichela

EFF members during the protest in Pretoria. Picture: Kamogelo Moichela

Published Mar 20, 2023


Pretoria - The EFF said it was pleased with the turnout of the national shutdown with most of their members remaining disciplined.

It said: “This morning, activists came out in their numbers and registered their dissatisfaction against the incompetent government of Cyril Ramaphosa, in the face of intimidation and violence by police and military personnel.

“Many activists who were violated or detained by police in the early hours of this morning have been released and are on the ground determined to exercise their constitutional right to protest.”

Video: African News Agency (ANA)

EFF leader Julius Malema thanked their members for a peaceful march.

“It”s just the beginning, now let’s go out and join the picket lines. They said it was a normal day, but you could see who the deceivers were. You proved to the doomsayers once more that we remain the only disciplined force of the Left," he said.

The EFF said the shutdown would continue until midnight. It said taxi ranks, malls, and intersections that would ordinarily be busy in the cities and townships were empty. “Many shops, businesses, petrol stations, car dealerships and courts are not operational as a result of the national shutdown,” it said. “As things stand, it is not a normal day in South Africa.”

The EFF said buses and taxis were empty because the people had heeded their call to not allow the country to be “business as usual”, and called for Ramaphosa’s resignation.

The party said: “The success of the national shutdown so far proves that our people are sick and tired of load shedding, corruption, unemployment, crime, gender-based violence and a lack of service delivery.

“One of the major successes of the national shutdown, before it even began, is that it has drastically decreased the stages of load shedding. It is because of the national shutdown that South Africa has moved from Stage 4 to Stage 1 over the past four days, and it was even suspended yesterday.”

It said the economy had come to a standstill because they too were tired of Ramaphosa.

“He and the ANC said it is business as usual yet businesses are closed, meaning workers and the people of South Africa refused to listen to the lies.

“It is now time to descend onto the streets and register our unhappiness and frustration against the regime of the day, through massive protests and demonstrations,” it said.

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