Zuma's arrest was exploited to trigger instability in SA - Kodwa

Deputy Minister in the Presidency responsible for state security, Zizi Kodwa, said that the violence and looting that happened in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal last month was a carefully coordinated attempt to destabilise the country.

Protesters gesture towards police officers (not seen) as they burn tyres in Jeppestown, Johannesburg, on 11 July 2021. Picture: Luca Sola/AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Deputy Minister in the Presidency responsible for state security, Zizi Kodwa, said that former President Jacob Zuma’s incarceration should not be used as a scapegoat for the failed insurrection.

Kodwa said that the violence and looting that happened in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal last month was a carefully coordinated attempt to destabilise the country.

Kodwa and ministers in the security cluster were responding to members of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) during a debate on the recent civil unrest on Wednesday. Deputy Minister in the Presidency Zizi Kodwa said that state security had reliably established that former President Jacob Zuma’s arrest was not the catalyst for the unrest and looting last month. The deputy minister charged with leading the country’s intelligence services said the alleged instigators merely exploited this.

“Intelligence has revealed now that the arrest of President Zuma was not a driver of discontent, but an exploited event to trigger instability. We know now that the basic events we have selected were not isolated incidents, but a well-coordinated and a planned,” Kodwa said.

Kodwa said what happened should never again happen in the country.

Defence Minister Thandi Modise also added her voice, saying that it did not matter which party the instigators were affiliated to.

“Their colour doesn't matter. Their political affiliation doesn't matter. Illegality and criminality is the same, and we must treat it the same,” she said.

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