South Africa

What you said: Sorry, Zuma. SA is not sliding towards a 'constitutional dictatorship'

What you said: Sorry, Zuma. SA is not sliding towards a 'constitutional dictatorship'

Former president Jacob Zuma split opinions this week when he responded to a Constitutional Court ruling against him, claiming SA is changing from a constitutional democracy to a constitutional dictatorship.

In a four-page open letter posted on his foundation’s social media platforms, Zuma said the public have been “hypnotised” by an anti-Zuma narrative.

He alleged the judiciary had bent and manipulated the laws to target him, citing three examples he claimed showed this.

“As with many of our leaders during the struggle, I believe history will vindicate me when I say SA today is in the process of changing from a constitutional democracy to a constitutional dictatorship,” he said.

On Friday the ConCourt dismissed Zuma’s rescission application. He had asked the apex court to overturn his 15-month jail sentence handed down in June after he failed to comply with the court’s order to appear before the state capture inquiry.

TimesLIVE ran a poll asking readers if they believed SA was heading towards a “constitutional dictatorship”?

More than 1,200 people voted in under 24 hours, with 56% saying they did not believe anything Zuma claimed, while 33% said it was “quite the opposite”.

Only 11% agreed with the former president.

On social media, many were not convinced by Zuma’s claims.

“He created a messy democracy and now that he’s powerless he’s spitting fire just to get attention,” said Boniswa Somana.

“Every word he said is correct,” countered Mthokozisi Thabiso WakwaHlatshwayo

Andries Seale wrote: “That is his view and it must be respected, but he cannot claim constitutional dictatorship when one is on the wrong side of the law. It can’t be correct. People always like things which favour them and criticise that which doesn’t favour them.”