'Let's learn from The Spear saga'

The Gauteng ANC says South Africans can learn from 'The Spear' debate.

'The Spear' defaced. Picture: Gareth Brown/iWitness

JOHANNESBURG - South Africans must work out what they can learn and gain from the turmoil surrounding the President Jacob Zuma painting, Gauteng ANC secretary David Makhura said on Monday.

Artist Brett Murray's controversial painting 'The Spear' shows the president with his genitals exposed.

Makhura said it was time for South Africans to stop being so angry and to start learning.

"As the ANC, will emerge out this process being educated. Leadership is about going beyond the anger," he said.

Earlier on Monday, editor Ferial Haffajee announced that the image would be remove from the_ City Press_ website.

The publication now has a black block with a note above reading, "The Spear is down - out of care and fear."

The note below the image read, "The Spear is down. Out of care and as an olive branch to play a small role in helping turn around a tough moment, I have decided to take down the image."

But the Democratic Alliance's Mmusi Maimane said it was unfortunate that the City Press buckled to political pressure.

Johannesburg's Goodman Gallery has not yet said if it is going to change its stance on the issue.

Last week, Zuma took the gallery and the publication to the South Gauteng High Court in order to compel them to remove the portrait.

Meanwhile, the ANC said it is still going ahead with Tuesday's planned march to the gallery.

ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said the march will start a process of national healing.

"It will be an amazing day. The day will probably put all that we have been through to the end."

Mthembu's comments could indicate that the issue has been resolved.