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Fri Jul 29 06:08:19 SAST 2016

Residents of 'Zuma Must Fall' billboard building speak out

Jenna Etheridge | 21 January, 2016 07:30
"Zuma must fall" banner at the top of Long street on January 15, 2016.
Image by: Ruvan Boshoff

The heated reaction to the “Zuma Must Fall” billboard on an apartment block in Cape Town was the first time there had been drama over the advertising space, residents said.

And they had mixed reactions to ANC supporters storming their building to tear it down, as well as to a large banner of the SA flag now in its place.

Cleaner Charmaine Vos, 52, thought her son had returned home when she heard knocking at the door of her 4th floor apartment on Saturday.

She peeked through the glass and saw men in yellow shirts. Polite knocking soon became loud banging.

“I thought they were going to break the door down. I stood in the corner because I was scared,” she said on Wednesday.

She heard people “making a racket” and saw a huge crowd of angry people standing outside the McDonalds on the ground floor.

“When I looked over the balcony, I started shaking and trembling because I was in shock. Police stood around like puppets doing nothing.

“Nothing like this has happened in the 22 years that I’ve been here.”

It was also a first for Sibusiso Skotana, 28, who had lived on the second floor for seven years.

He said it was the supporters’ prerogative to take the banner down and whoever had put it up “wanted to provoke”.

But he did not condone violence.

“I’m African and it’s a manner of disrespect calling out an elder [Zuma] but we are living in a modern world and everyone has their opinion and views.”

He said he was proud the SA flag was there “after everything that had happened”.

“We may not all be united but we should strive to be.”

A resident who only identified herself as Chue-Chue said she didn’t like the Zuma poster because it was about politics.

She also felt its replacement was inappropriate because most of the block’s occupants were from Zimbabwe, America, Switzerland and the Democratic Republic of Congo like herself.

The City of Cape Town said it had no idea who was responsible for the latest display at the corner of Kloof and Buitensingel streets. It had not received an application to have it erected, said spokesperson Priya Reddy.

"We will investigate whether it is in contravention with any of our bylaws and if it is, the matter will be handed over to our prosecutor," said Reddy.

Meanwhile, the city was still in the process of taking action against signage company, Independent Outdoor Media, which was behind the allegedly illegal erection of the "Zuma Must Fall" banner put up last week.

Source: News24

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