Gunshots, singing as crowds march in support of Zuma

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma gestures during a media briefing with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (not pictured) at the Union Building in Pretoria November 26, 2014. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: POLITICS)

DURBAN. – Supporters of former president Jacob Zuma fired gunshots in the air as they led a motorcade from Eshowe to his rural homestead of Nkandla in northern KwaZulu-Natal to lend him support on Thursday.

“Sekungcono basidubule, dubula dubula dubula [They would rather shoot us]” was the theme song outside the Zuma homestead where scores of supporters gathered after a Constitutional Court judgment sentencing him to 15 months in prison for contempt of court.

Zuma’s home entrance was a hive of activity as supporters clad in ANC regalia gathered in song and dance, with the clear message: “Zuma is not going to jail even if he elects to do so.”

It started with a motorcade of people claiming to be ANC members from the eThekwini region who had assembled in Eshowe. The bumper-to-bumper motorcade of mostly double cabs and luxury vans was not without drama.

Gunshots were often fired into the air during the many stops, accompanied by singing and dancing. ANC songs and maskandi music reverberated from their vehicles. Onlookers along the roadside waved and ululated.

At one point, the two-way road was turned into a one-way with oncoming traffic forced aside and no law enforcement officials in sight.

Upon arrival at KwaDakwadunuse, it was time for the declaration of the mission of the day, and probably the rest of the week, until D-Day for Zuma to hand himself over to police as per the Constitutional Court judgment.

Enter Lindani Sicwala, the leader of the group and an ANC branch chairperson from eThekwini region.

“We are here with a single mission. Our message is clear: we say what is happening to Zuma is wrong and unfair,” said Sicwala.

“Therefore we are saying, be it his family saying he must hand himself over or not, we are saying he is going nowhere. We will sleep here and wake up here and if the police come, they will have to do so with a helicopter because we will stop them.”

SA National Civic Organisation Youth Congress spokesperson Thulani Gamede echoed the sentiments.

“We do not care what Zuma says, we will defend him by any means necessary. He is not going anywhere, no-one will arrest him. Whoever thinks they can do that must go through us. If they succeed we are going to jail with him, otherwise all hell will break loose.”– TimesLIVE

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