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Zuma urges learners, teachers in Vuwani to return to school

President Jacob Zuma was expected to address the community at a public meeting on Sunday, however, he was prevented due to disruptions.

Vuwani residents sing and chant while waiting for President Jacob Zuma's address. Picture: Pelane Phakgadi/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – President Jacob Zuma has urged learners and educators in Vuwani to go back to school.

Zuma was expected to address the community at a public meeting on Sunday, however, he was prevented due to disruptions.

The meeting degenerated into chaos on Sunday when residents stopped Cooperative Governance Minister Des van Rrooyen’s address by booing him and chanting “Zuma”.

President Zuma didn’t speak at the event, with sources saying that the situation was not conducive.

President spokesperson Bongani Nqulunga says: “The meeting accepted the king’s proposal, and it was also agreed that relevant departments from the provincial and national government will have to support the district municipality in execution of this new mandate.

“President Zuma is scheduled to go back to the area to address the issue that has risen as a result of the establishment of the new municipality.”

WAITING FOR PRESIDENT ZUMA

The residents waited hours for Zuma to arrive and address them on the demarcation crisis.

They are demanding their area be reincorporated into the Makhado Municipality and not a new municipality in Malamulele.

Van Rooyen, along with Police Minister Fikile Mbalula and State Security Minister David Mahlobo, left the area driving at high speed, just moments after residents demanded to be addressed by President Zuma.

Sources say the president was advised to leave, citing safety concerns.

Community leader Nsovo Sambo says he does not understand why the president kept hundreds of residents waiting for him, only to leave without coming anywhere near the venue.

“We had the president at the stakeholders’ briefing but he didn’t show up here to address the masses, the people he said he's coming to address.”

Several cars were damaged, including three belonging to the SABC.

Police cleared the area and now keeping an eye on the situation.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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