Duduzane Zuma Israel

Photo: Good Read / Flickr

Duduzane Zuma defends looting comments: ‘I was not instigating violence’

Duduzane Zuma came under fire after calling on people to loot and protest ‘responsibly’ – but says his words were taken out of context

Duduzane Zuma Israel

Photo: Good Read / Flickr

Duduzane Zuma has denied ever encouraging people looting “to do so responsibly,” claiming there must have been “some sort of misunderstanding” over his remarks, which sparked a wave of condemnation.

Former president Jacob Zuma’s son did an interview with the local news channel Newzroom Afrika, during which he sought to clear the air and address his comments.

Zuma has told the broadcaster that the clip is merely “seven or eight seconds,” and doesn’t tell the full whole story, as opposed to the full video, which is over 11 minutes long.

“People are trying to focus on a certain voice clip or video clip and are blowing it out of proportion. I think there are comments that I made leading up to that point and I think there’s some sort of misunderstanding or confusion around it but if you play the entire clip, you’ll understand what it is that I was trying to say”

Duduzane Zuma

Zuma says in the clip, he was responding to allegations that he and his sister Dudu Sambudla-Zuma were instigating the unrest, which had started as semi-violent demonstrations demanding their father’s release from prison.

“This clip was done maybe three or four days into what is known as the unrest at the moment. There’s obviously been a lot that has been said about me and my participation in what’s happening in the country right now. A lot of finger-pointing,” he said.

In the video clip shared on  the Instagram page of his close associate Winston Innes, he  urged citizens who were demonstrating and looting, to do so responsibly.

“Similarly, for the people that are protesting and looting, please do so carefully and please do so responsibly because you cannot hold people responsible for defending what they love,” Zuma said.

Duduzane Zuma on the recent riots

Further talking about the unrest, Duduzane Zuma was also asked about sentiments suggesting he supports or sympathises with the looters. Again, Zuma Jnr. says he has been quoted out of context.

He says most of the people who were protesting and not the looters or vandals, did so because they felt ignored and neglected by the current government.

“What I’ve said is there are a few underlying issues that have caused the problem right now in our country and will continue to cause it if we do not deal with it. The understanding from my side is that people are sitting home and are hungry – they’re sitting at home without employment. When I talk about understandable, I’m talking about it as an idea of someone who is desperate. Not the unrest, the protest part – people who are trying to shed light on their situation,” he said.