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Opposition parties to meet over ConCourt Nkandla ruling

Opposition leaders have indicated they will meet this week to discuss the implications of the judgment.

FILE: UDM leader Bantu Holomisa. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - As opposition parties prepare to meet to discuss the Constitutional Court's Nkandla ruling, there have been calls for a united movement of parties and civil society groups to act against President Jacob Zuma.

Opposition leaders have indicated they will meet this week to discuss the implications of the judgment, which unanimously found that Zuma had violated the Constitution and his oath of office.

On Friday night, Zuma apologised for the frustration and the confusion created by the Nkandla scandal, saying he had only ever acted in good faith in his handling of the matter.

On Thursday, the Constitutional Court ruled that Zuma failed to uphold and defend the Constitution in the Nkandla matter.

The United Democratic Movement's Bantu Holomisa said leaders from opposition parties are likely to meet tomorrow morning and he hopes they can move past their differences.

He said the country is in a constitutional crisis and the only solution was for Zuma to step down.

"We don't have to see violence, let us manage this properly but Zuma should go this time."

Former Congress of South African Trade Union Secretary General Zwelinzima Vavi said civil society would also meet this week and would welcome the call for unification with opposition parties.

"I've made a call to all South Africans who value the Constitution and who seeks to protect it to now unite."

Following the court ruling last Thursday, parties and organisations have been united in their call for Zuma to step down.

SANDU CALLS FOR MASS ACTION

The South African National Defence Union (Sandu) said it was absolutely despicable that Zuma, as the commander of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF), had transgressed the very Constitution the SANDF is charged with upholding.

Sandu has joined opposition parties, struggle stalwarts Ahmed Kathrada and ordinary South Africans in calling for Zuma to step down, adding that his apology was not enough.

Kathrada has released what he calls an "agonising" letter to Zuma, calling on Zuma to submit to the will of the people and resign.

He said he has been left with no choice but to speak out against Zuma, saying only his resignation would help the country out of the current crisis, not an apology.

Sandu has also called on civil society to use mass action campaigns and lawful means to remove Zuma.

Spokesperson Pikkie Greef says the call for Zuma to resign is not political.

"Sandu finds it absolutely despicable that the Commander in Chief of the armed forces, which is President Jacob Zuma, has been judged by the highest court to have contravened the Constitution and the fact that he now remains in his post and also as Commander in Chief is completely unacceptable."

Sandu released a statement on its Facebook page on Friday, saying "Sandu encourages all members of society, including soldiers to participate in their private capacity and time in any lawful mass action campaigns which might be called to the end of lawfully recalling and or removing President Zuma from office," the statement said.

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