CIVIC DUTY: President Cyril Ramaphosa updates his voter details at Hitekani Primary School in Chiawelo, Soweto.

Picture: Itumeleng English/ African News Agency (ANA)
CIVIC DUTY: President Cyril Ramaphosa updates his voter details at Hitekani Primary School in Chiawelo, Soweto.

Picture: Itumeleng English/ African News Agency (ANA)
‘OUR VOTES ARE NOT SECRET”: Former president Jacob Zuma with KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development MEC Sihle Zikalala and parliamentarian Mina Lesoma, far left, at the KwaMashu Christian Centre near Durban yesterday. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)
‘OUR VOTES ARE NOT SECRET”: Former president Jacob Zuma with KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development MEC Sihle Zikalala and parliamentarian Mina Lesoma, far left, at the KwaMashu Christian Centre near Durban yesterday. Picture: Bongani Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)
The ANC rolled out its heavyweights over the weekend to urge citizens to register to vote for the governing party during the general elections next year.

On Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa went to Tshwane, whose council the ANC lost control of in the 2016 local elections, while former president Jacob Zuma went to KwaMashu in his home province KwaZulu-Natal to call on locals to vote for the party.

In Centurion, Ramaphosa warned that the return of land to the majority of South Africans must not violate other people’s rights and the constitution.

Addressing congregants and ANC supporters at the New Creation Covenant Church, he said that when the party talked about the return of land to the people, everything had to be done in an orderly manner.

“We have got to do everything orderly in terms of our laws, in terms of our constitution, so that everybody’s rights are protected and advanced,” Ramaphosa said.

The ANC recently backed the EFF’s parliamentary motion of amending the constitution to enable the expropriation of land without compensation.

Ramaphosa, accompanied by Gauteng Premier and acting provincial ANC chairperson David Makhura and Tshwane regional chairperson Kgosientso Ramokgopa, said the “return of land” would not be done to the detriment of economic growth.

It should also not trump the rights of other South Africans, even if it went ahead.

“A new dawn for us must be that we do things the proper way, without any corruption, without violating the law and without violating the rights of other people - without doing anything that we will not want to be done to us. That is the new dawn,” he said.

Ramaphosa stressed that the outcomes of the ANC conference, during which it resolved on land expropriation without compensation, would aid changes to the country and bring about the redress of wrongdoings of the past.

“Things will start changing for the better. As we engage in this healing process, we must ensure that we adhere to ethical behaviour.

“We are now in healing mode, and during this process we are going to see a lot of things beginning to change,” the president said.

Ramaphosa admitted that the government was lagging behind in terms of service delivery in certain parts of the metro, adding that Makhura would visit some of the areas this week to address community demands, including housing.

Zuma, meanwhile, gave an assurance that his love for the ANC was far from over, despite being forced by the organisation’s leadership to resign last month before the end of his term of office.

“We will be calling on the voters to vote for the ANC, and there is no doubt about it. For some of us our votes are not secret and are very open. I would vote even if you are looking at my ballot paper,” Zuma told journalists.

Zuma spent the better part of yesterday pleading with prospective voters to go out and register.

He and KwaZulu-Natal ANC co-ordinator Sihle Zikalala started the day by attending a two-hour-long church service at the KwaMashu Christian Centre, where Bishop Nicholas Mzimela called on about 1 000 of his congregants to prepare themselves to “block the DA from taking over the country”.

“No white party should rule this country,” he said.

Zuma told the congregants they should register even if they have not decided whether to vote or not, “because you might later decide that you to want to vote for certain party”.

“If you don’t register today you might not be able to vote even after having made your decision.”

Zuma added that he had no doubt that during next year’s general elections, the ANC would emerge victorious in KwaZulu-Natal.

“The ANC is big, the ANC has the support of the country. I know no other party that is supported like the ANC. I know no other party that is in every corner of the country other than the ANC,” he said.