#YouthDay: ‘Wave your flags for Zuma’ & ‘Zuma must go’

President Jacob Zuma has used his speech to highlight that education is the most powerful weapon in the fight for economic freedom.

President Jacob Zuma addressed hundreds at the Tshing sports ground in Ventersdorp to mark Youth Day on 16 June 2017. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

VENTERSDORP - The crowd attending the official Youth Day address in the North West has been asked to stand and wave their flags as a sign of love and respect for President Jacob Zuma.

It’s in stark contrast to scenes that have played out outside the venue, where a group of young people briefly interrupted Zuma's address by chanting: “Zuma must go”.

Zuma has used his speech to single out education as the most powerful weapon in the fight for economic freedom.

The President says while the youth of 1976 fought for the liberation of the country, young people today have a different battle on their hands.

“The youth of 2017 is fighting for freedom from poverty, inequality and unemployment.”

Despite a group of people booing him in the beginning, President Zuma continued to deliver his speech undeterred.

The president says it’s important to honour the youth of 1976 because their contribution played a role in the country's freedom.

However, he says young people must not overlook the opportunities that have been made available.

“The National Youth Development Agency has been directed to focus on promoting youth entrepreneurship and the improved coordination of the national youth service across all sectors of government.”

He says although the country is going through a tough time, people should put aside their differences for the benefit of the country.

Earlier, Zuma and North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo arrived to cheers from the thousands of people attending the event at the Tshing sports ground.

Mahumapelo believes the president's visit to the area will help integrate black and white members of the community.

The North West Premier says Ventersdorp has been plagued by racism and he hopes people will unite to benefit young people.

Those in attendance include Ministers Nathi Mthethwa and Buti Manamela.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)