KwaZulu-Natal - The SACP and Cosatu in KwaZulu-Natal have called on the government to ensure “meaningful steps” are taken to protect the stature of the office of the president.
This follows the recent controversial painting of President Jacob Zuma by artist Ayanda Mabulu which depicts the president dancing with his genitals exposed under his traditional garments.
Mabulu’s painting followed that of another, by artist Brett Murray, entitled The Spear, which also depicted Zuma with exposed genitals.
Themba Mthembu and Zet Luzipo, the provincial secretaries of the SACP and Cosatu respectively, said such paintings amounted to harassment of Zuma and his family.
“This is taken as violence against the wives and children of the president,” said Mthembu, reading from the joint statement.
He said that steps to protect the president from further “abuse” were needed, adding that these could include promulgation of legislation.
“We are saying that there could be a bill that would prevent the president being painted naked,” said Mthembu.
Cosatu and the SACP said that they viewed the latest Zuma painting as being a product of tribalism, warning that such an “attack” on Zuma and the ANC is seen as “spitting on all efforts on reconciliation” in the country.
“[It] confirms beyond our fears that besides racism, the demon of tribalism is also being added to this concerted effort to attack the Zuma-led government as this portrait emerged immediately after some tribalistic display of posters in the Marikana shootings demonstrations.”
Both organisations said they were convinced that there was a concerted effort by “imperialist” forces to undermine Zuma’s leadership.
“This [imperialist] aggression comes in a form of attempts to recolonise this country in another form so [as] to continue to serve the interests of the imperialists’ countries.”
Mthembu said such forces wanted to ensure puppets of imperialist countries emerged victorious at the ANC’s nation-al conference in Mangaung at the end of the year. - Daily News