Zuma a 'sell-out', says Maimane
01 March 2016, 19:47
Parliament - DA leader Mmusi Maimane branded President Jacob Zuma a "sell-out" in his address on the motion of no confidence in the president on Tuesday.
Maimane said Zuma "sold out" when the Scorpions were disbanded and when he "knowingly" used public money on his house in Nkandla.
"He sold us all of us out to his friends the Guptas," continued Maimane.
Zuma was not present in the House.
Maimane said parents were scared about their children's future in South Africa, and employers were wondering how they would pay employees.
To booing and heckling from the ANC caucus and a burst of singing by ANC supporters in the gallery, Maimane pressed on, saying Zuma was unstitching the Constitution "thread by thread" so his friends could "loot".
"The biggest sell-out in our country is none other than President Zuma."
The word 'sell-out' during apartheid referred to people who abandoned their political principles for personal interest or a softer solution.
Zuma spent 10 years on Robben Island as a political prisoner, so the insult was bound to sting.
Maimane said that at the same time the debate was being held, the DA was arguing in the High Court in Pretoria about a case which included allegations that Zuma accepted a R500 000 bribe from a French arms company via his former financial adviser Schabir Shaik.
Maimane said the more obvious Zuma's failures became, the more the ANC played the race card.
"But it cannot be that if you are white and you don't agree with the ANC you are called a racist, and if you are black you are called a sell-out."
While designed to diminish the ANC's opponents, playing the race card instead diminished the ANC, he said.
He told the outraged ANC caucus they should consider the damage Zuma was doing to the party.
"Do you want to be remembered as servants of the people or sell-outs of the people?" Maimane asked, to a standing ovation from his party as he returned to his seat.