Protesters for, against Zuma go on parade in Johannesburg
The supporters and opponents of South African President Jacob Zuma have taken to the streets in Johannesburg, disputing whether Zuma should resign before the end of his term.
Members of the Black First Land First (BLF) sitting in the back of a pick up truck, are attacked by African National Congress (ANC) members as they protest outside the ANC headquarters in downtown Johannesburg, Monday Feb. 5, 2018. South Africa's ruling ANC is struggling to resolve a leadership crisis amid increasing calls for scandal-tainted President Jacob Zuma to resign ahead of a key speech scheduled this week. The BLF are calling for Zuma to stay. [Photo: IC]
The country's ruling party, the African National Congress (ANC), elected Vice President Cyril Ramaphosa as its new leader in place of Zuma in December last year.
A party known as Black First, Land First wants Zuma to be allowed to finish his term, which ends in 2019.
"What we see that is happening here, you find that there are internal agents which have infiltrated the ANC to sway them away from the radical economic transformation. Our message is clear: the president will stay in office until his term is finished," leader of the party Abie Letsoalo said.
The counter-march, organized by a rival group of ANC members from across South Africa, prevented the supporters from getting close to the Luthuli House.
"If they want to bring their memorandum precisely because they have a preference of comrade Zuma, we don't have a problem with them supporting and loving President Zuma. But they should be taking their memorandum to the Union Buildings. And one other thing, we then ask to ourselves and had to say; they can not dictate what we judge from the national conference of the ANC that has elected the newly elected leadership that is led by comrade Cyril Ramaphosa. So we believe from where we stand that, this is a direct attack to the current leadership," organizer of the counter-march Lele Sekete said.
The Zuma issue has divided many in the country into pro and anti Zuma factions.
Zuma is under increasing pressure to resign before the state of the nation address on February 8.
Meanwhile, the ANC national working committee has been summoned to a special meeting at Luthuli House, following one between Zuma and the ruling party's top leadership on Sunday night.
The meeting failed to yield results.