Calls for Zuma to go are indecent and unhelpful: presidency

The presidency has hit back at mining bosses which have publicly called for president Jacob Zuma to step down, calling their utterances indecent and unhelpful.

In a statement issue on Thursday, the presidency said that it is open to dialogue and interaction with all sectors of society, but said that it would be “more helpful if it takes place within the bounds of human decency and decorum and upholds respect for key institutions and in our country”.

The presidency was reacting to comments made by two leaders in the mining sector – Sibanye Gold CEO Neal Fronemand, and Anglogold Ashanti chairman Sipho Pityana – who have called for Zuma to step down.

Pityana, especially, has been very outspoken against the president, calling him the ‘sponsor-in-chief of corruption’, who has effectively made it okay for all in position of power, who have been singled out for corruption, to keep their positions despite public outcry.

The mining chairman’s latest comments on the president follow a stern warning from deputy mineral resources minister Godfrey Oliphant, who said that government would eventually retaliate against executives who were too critical of the president.

The presidency previously called on businesses and stakeholders to address its concerns with government privately, as it was counter to attempts to put forward a positive, investor-friendly view of the country.

According to Zuma, being too negative would put jobs and economic growth at further risk.

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Calls for Zuma to go are indecent and unhelpful: presidency