Forces of state capture are on the retreat – Save SA’s Sipho Pityana

2017-02-01 13:44

Save South Africa convenor Sipho Pityana says the campaign will continue to target president Jacob Zuma this year because he remains “commander in chief of corruption”.

Save South Africa, which was started last year, has gone on a public offensive protesting Zuma’s leadership, including organising marches.

Pityana is convinced that through civil campaigns, Zuma and those who support him were stopped in their tracks in their endeavour to overrun the Treasury.

However, he believed that the project to capture South African resources for private interests remained under way.

“At this time last year, I would have said forces of capture are riding roughshod, pushing their way. But I think they suffered major setbacks last year. And that [was] largely to do with the fact they were challenged and their positions were contested.

“But I do believe that they are regrouping and are fighting back.”

Last year, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan was threatened with prosecution by the Hawks and the National Prosecuting Authority, but the charges were later withdrawn.

However, the Hawks indicated they were investigating his role in the formation of an intelligence unit within the South African Revenue Service that was later dubbed a “rogue unit”.

Pityana said the campaign by those who were bent on “capturing” the state was not cohesive.

“But they are better resourced than their countervailing forces. They are able to throw huge amounts of resources and ... mount a major fightback strategy.”

But he was confident in the strength of people who wanted to do right for the country.

“There are clearly very strong voices that are saying we will not allow our country to be overrun. They are united in their rejection of attempt to capture the state. There is a much greater sense of coalescence, even if they are not cohesive, they do coalesce.”

He said what will happened next in 2017 would depend on what moves Zuma made.

If Zuma made poorly calculated decisions, that might help those who opposed him

He added that Save South Africa was determined to stop the nuclear deal, which they believed was too expensive and would collapse the country’s resources.

“There are allegations that the deal is done, albeit unconfirmed. If the deal is already done it would be illegal. In terms of our law there has to be due processes.

“We are committed to ensuring that deal does not see the light of the day because of what it would do to South Africa’s development agenda.”

Pityana said they would not only focus on Zuma, but on ensuring that he was not succeeded by his lookalike when he steps down from power.

Save South Africa would present its own alternative state of the nation address in Cape Town next week before the official event next Thursday.

Rapule Tabane
Politics editor
City Press
City Press
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April 22 2018