20 April 2017 Read: 139
Ordinary South African citizens took to the streets twice this month to protest against the actions of the president of the country, Jacob Zuma, as well as the corruption within the ruling ANC party.
Marches were held in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town. Elsewhere in the country groups of concerned citizens got together at central points with placards voicing their discontent.
The Limpopo Province is particularly affected by corruption and poor governance with collapsed infrastructures ranging from poor education to the inadequate maintenance of roads, electricity and water. Jobs are scarce and this together with the unstable political climate has probably contributed to the escalation of crime and violence being committed on citizens in their homes, businesses and farms. The latter is particularly disconcerting as Limpopo farmers form the backbone of the agricultural industry. The escalating torture and killing of farmers is unacceptable yet the ruling party turns a blind eye to the need to protect farmers and their workers.
Avocado theft is rife in the Magoebaskloof and, as the avocado season kicks off again, so farmers are having their fences cut, security breached and losses of R100, 000.00 worth of avocados are being reported almost weekly.
The village of Haenertsburg heeded the call to protest and turned up with placards outside the village on the national R71 road on both the 7th and 12th of April. It was cold with mist and rain at the first protest but that did not dampen the spirit of some 50 protesters. Owner of Lekwar restaurant, Frans de Bruyn, sailed up to the protesters, wearing the South African flag as a cape, and dished out cups of hot coffee.
The second protest was on a sunny morning and attended by some 20 people and a Jack Russell called Jackie Chan. Locals got together to produce different placards that were also very colourful. Traffic on the R71 is always heavy and the response from truckers, taxi drivers, their passengers and motorists was positive with a definite awareness of the political situation that the country finds itself in since President Zuma took office.
Tzaneen residents did not take to the streets on these two days but word has it that many are going to Bloemfontein in the Free State this Saturday. The Christian evangelist, Angus Buchan, has called for a day of prayer to save the country.
The President, to date, has misinterpreted the protests. However ordinary citizens were so disappointed in the firing of the highly regarded finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, and other issues that they felt the only way they could voice their fears was to take to the streets with appropriate placards.