New S.African alliance calls for Zuma's exit

New S.African alliance calls for Zuma's exit

A group of political parties, labour organisations and civil society have joined forces to remove President Jacob Zuma from office.

The "Freedom Movement" was announced at the Hector Pietersen memorial museum on Thursday.

A Freedom Movement spokesman said the country had been "plunged into a national crisis never seen since 1994".

"It is a crisis of a political leadership that has allowed our state to be hijacked by corrupt interests at the expense of needs and aspirations of the poor, the marginalised and patriotic South Africans". "It threatens to collapse the economy", Mashele said.

South Africans have held several protests this month calling for Zuma to resign but the 75-year old leader says he will only quit when his ruling African National Congress asks him to leave. "Let us stand up and defend our hardwon freedom and the future of our country". He said this meant standing together against "one individual".

UDM leader Bantu Holomisa said: "We know that this is nothing else but radical procurement for friends and families and we need to stop this behaviour".

Nelson Mandela's former personal assistant Zelda Le Grange said the movement was a united coalition and had nothing to do with party politics. Holomisa said he had written to the secretary general of the ANC, Gwede Mantashe, about this.

Maimane said all opposition parties were on board, and that different countries would be roped in, requesting their support.

Other aims of the movement include the offer of continued protection of the Constitution, a restoration of power to the people and to safeguard the state so as to implement economic development.

Holomisa said there came a time when political parties had to put their differences aside and "close ranks".

Tens of thousands of South Africans have in recent weeks staged demonstrations demanding Zuma's resignation.

Maimane quoted Cope leader Terror Lekota, who was absent from the event, who said it was important to have the "stamina for struggle".

"The worst thing we can do as South Africans is get used to the status quo of corruption and mismanagement". Zuma will destroy this country. "We believe the longer he stays in office, the more damage he will do", academic and founder Prince Mashele told The Citizen.