The ANC Youth League says President Jacob Zuma will not pay a cent towards the Nkandla upgrades as he did not ask for them. Photo: Soraya Crowie

Kimberley -

Walking with Jacob Zuma is like walking with God. This is according to ANC Northern Cape chairman, John Block, who said on Wednesday, during the ANC president’s visit to Kimberley that since Zuma was a priest, walking with him was like walking with God.

Zuma was described as a man of God whose leadership of the party would carry it to victory in the coming general elections on May 7.

“(Zuma) you are the only candidate we have for the elections. We are already talking about the future (beyond May 7) because we are not walking this path alone, sihamba nomfundisi (we are walking with a priest). Xha uhamba nomfundisi kufana nokuthi uhamba noThixo (when we are walking with a priest, we are walking with God),” Block said.

Party members who gathered at the Jim Summers Hall to welcome Zuma, cheered loudly at Block’s words.

The party’s provincial secretary, Zamani Saul, also reminded the crowds that Zuma was an ordained pastor.

He was ordained as an honorary pastor by the Full Gospel Community Church in 2007.

During his address, Zuma told party members that they needed to work hard to ensure that overwhelming majority of voters in the province voted for the ANC.

He said that on the day of the elections, all party members, including members of the alliance, had to ensure that all voters were driven to their nearest voting stations.

“Hire vehicles to take people to the voting stations if you have to. Some of our people will be sick or will be lazy to go to the voting station. Ensure that you drive those people there. If you own two or more vehicles, volunteer one of the vehicles for this purpose. Let us lead our people by the hand to the voting stations,” Zuma said.

He pointed out that the future without the ANC was inconceivable.

“Without the ANC, I don’t know what South Africa would be like,” he added.

Zuma then reflected on the party achievements since 1994, saying that a better South Africa had been created under the leadership of the ANC.

“The ANC is a wonderful organisation. We brought freedom to South Africa and we are continuing to move the country forward. We have a plan in the form of the National Development Plan (NDP). There is no other liberation party that has achieved the things that we have in only 20 years – you can google that!

“Indeed we have a good story to tell: South Africa is a better place to live in today than it was before 1994,” he added.

In a veiled attack on breakaway parties, Zuma told party members that no other political party in South Africa was formed in response to the national problems.

“The land, economic power and political power were taken away from the majority of the blacks. That was the reason why the ANC was formed. The ANC was formed by the people for the people. It was not formed because people thought that they were bigger than the organisation or because they were angry about this or that,” he pointed out.

He said that the ANC continued to grow in the face of serious criticism by some who were preaching propaganda.

“At times, some take the people of South Africa for granted. They think our people cannot see reality from propaganda. This is undermining the intelligence of the people of this country. When we went to the party’s conference in Polokwane in 2007, we had more than 600 000 members and by the time we went to Mangaung in 2012, we had doubled that number,” Zuma explained.

He also called on former party members who left the ANC to join other political parties to come back home.

“Come back to the mainstream so that you can use your expertise and continue to contribute to the future of the country. If you are not in the ANC, you will end up using your energies in a negative way – in a way that is destructive,” Zuma added.

Earlier, before his address, as people waited for almost two hours for him to arrive, party members sang pro-Zuma songs.

“Samthatha uZuma sambeka epalamende (we put Zuma in Parliament),” the members sang.

“Sihamba no Zuma. UZuma ungowethu (we are walking with Zuma… he is our own).”


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