Zuma signals another warning to unruly protestors

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma has once again sent a stern warning to striking workers who are unruly, saying their actions will not be tolerated.

Speaking on Wednesday at the Presidential Guesthouse against the violence that has accompanied the current municipal strike, President Zuma said while government respected the right of the workers to protest, this should not interfere with the rights of other citizens.

"I may not be a lawyer, but I'm told those who are thrashing streets are breaking the law," said President Zuma.

Striking workers in several towns and cities have since Monday been going on the rampage, spilling rubbish on the streets and destroying public property.

Johannesburg has been the hardest hit, with local authorities now estimating the damages to cost thousands of Rands.

"While they have rights ... they are interfering with the rights of others. We respect and will protect that right as a developmental and progressive state. However, there can be no justification for public violence and the destruction of property," he added.

President Zuma urged police to arrest all those deemed to be breaking the law. "I say mababoshwe! (Zulu for 'they must be arrested!').