Durban - Following the events in the aftermath of former president Jacob Zuma’s arrest, his son Duduzane has appeared in a video in which he says: “the people that are protesting and looting, please do so carefully and please do so responsibly”.
Zuma also blamed his father’s arrest and imprisonment and the government’s lockdown on the unfolding civil unrest in the country.
In a video shared on the Instagram page of his close associate Winston Innes, Zuma said death, destruction, vandalism and threats were not the solution, adding that ways had to be found to deal with the situation, which was spiralling out of control.
Video: Winston Innes/Instagram
He said that the country was one massacre away from the situation spiralling out of control and urged those citizens who were armed to defend themselves, families and communities to do so responsibly.
“Similarly, for the people that are protesting and looting, please do so carefully and please do so responsibly because you cannot hold people responsible for defending what they love,” Zuma said.
He added he did not form part of any social media platforms, including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and all other platforms that exist.
“I’ve not made any inflammatory, any divisive and any inciting (comments) now or ever. I’m about peace, I’m about solutions, I’m unity, and the only way that we’re going to get through this problem we have at hand is by unifying. Now, we can’t have a situation where we spread false information further flaming the flames of disparity and desperation,” Zuma said.
He said that those who have been looting had been labelled “looters”, “criminals”, “hooligans”, and that this was a problem as it further fanned the flames because these were people who were desperate. He added that he was not condoning their behaviour of mass destruction.
“But we need to understand the root cause of these problems, and part of the problem is poverty, unemployment, inequality, and now leaving all the politics aside, let’s deal with the situation with reality in mind.
“We all know what the situation is, people that don’t have and live across the roads from us, they work for us, some of them have been people that have grown up with us. Now, we can't have a situation where they leave their places of work, go home and have no food on the table,” Zuma said.
He said such occurrences would create strife and lead to situations such as the one currently unfolding in the country, adding that what was unfolding was not a flash in the pan as it was an issue that had been building up for a number of years.
“We not here to blame people, we not here to blame the current government, we not here to blame the apartheid government, but we are here to blame the issues as they exist. The socio-economic issues in our country are real. Starvation is a real thing, and we need to understand that if we do not deal with that issue specifically, we are going to have these problems.
“This is no surprise that this is happening. Two things have caused what is called civil unrest. One was the arresting and imprisonment of Jacob Zuma, and the second thing, in my firm belief, is lockdown,” he said.
He said his father’s imprisonment was unjust and unfair and he was standing by him and calling for his release and would continue calling for his release from prison.
He added that continuing with the lockdown would not bring the current situation under control because South Africa had a set of unique socio-economic circumstances that put people in a situation where they were not able to fend for themselves.
“Now, if we come and lock people down further, what do we expect to happen? There’s certain choices that we’ve made that have brought us to this position that we are in today. Certain decisions that have been made and not made that have brought us to where we are today.
“It’s not going to help us pointing fingers and creating issues that will divide us. We need to pull together. The issues of inequality, unemployment and poverty are real issues, and this is what is playing out in the public domain,” Zuma said.