Johannesburg - For anyone glued to their television last night it was a memorable State of the Nation address. As they’d promised, Julius Malema’s EFF provided the entertainment, launching a new social media hashtag, #Zuptamustfall, to replace their successful #Paybackthemoney.
Reappointed Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan managed to crack a few smiles for the cameras and President Jacob Zuma negotiated one of those tricky numbers (9 600) well enough.
But the key contribution came from Mosiuoa Lekota, the often forgotten leader of COPE. The visibly moved veteran of The Struggle exposed the real challenge to this young democracy. Zuma, he shouted, has admitted to the highest court in the land that he has broken his oath of office. That, said Lekota, means Zuma may legally no longer serve as the President.
In all the excitement that followed, Lekota’s words and deeds may be forgotten. But he highlighted the real challenge to SA.
If the President of the country is able to openly defy the Constitutional Court, brush it aside again as Zuma and the ANC did in the Al-Bashir affair, such action threatens to destroy the very foundation of this Constitutional Democracy.
Lekota has highlighted what is really at stake. It is not racism or even the economy which should top our combined agenda. Rather it’s the political challenge to the nation’s bedrock which sits on Constitution Hill.
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