Cupcakes fuel protest march to Parliament

07 April 2017 - 16:19 By Alexa Cole And Sealy Mcmurrey
Cupcakes vs President Jacob Zuma.
Cupcakes vs President Jacob Zuma.
Image: Esa Alexander

An army marches on its stomach and when protesters marching to Parliament unwrapped their “rations” in Cape Town on Friday they turned out to be – cupcakes.

Cupcakes decorated with political slogans proved to be a popular snack among many in the crowd waving posters‚ banners and flags.

Charly’s Bakery makes hundreds of cupcakes every day‚ and since Thursday night‚ the bakers have been creating specialty cupcakes in response to the protests against President Jacob Zuma.

  • Anti-Zuma marches: the memes that had us chucklingSouth Africans took their anti-Zuma marches seriously on Friday‚ but typically not without a touch of humour. 

Cupcakes were decorated with slogans such as “Recall Parliament”‚ “SA Must Rise”‚ “Divided We Fall”‚ “United We Stand”‚ “Cry Our Beloved Country”‚ as well as images of the South African flag.

Bakery owner‚ Jacqui Biess‚ said‚ “Cupcakes are a wonderful way to mobilize people”.

  • Protesters chant 'Zuma must go' outside Gupta compoundAbout 300 people congregated outside the Gupta family compound in Saxonwold‚ Johannesburg‚ at noon on Friday as part of "Black Friday" protests countrywide calling for President Jacob Zuma to leave as president of the country. 

The bakery has a strong presence on social media‚ with over 100 000 followers on Facebook. Biess said she began advertising the cupcakes on Thursday night on social media and quickly started seeing retweets. “We had no idea if it would be dead today‚ but we’ve had a really good turnout‚” said Biess.

Cupcakes with slogans aren’t new to Charly's. Biess said that whenever a big event happened‚ she and her daughters brainstormed when to write on their cupcakes that would elicit a giggle and have them flying off the racks.

  • Durban ANCYL and DA marches turn ugly‚ protester beaten with sticksPolice have to used a stun grenade to save a DA supporter from being attacked by members of an ANC Youth League lead protest in Durban. 

Previous notable cupcakes have included “Honorable Speaker” in response to the Economic Freedom Fighter's Julius Malema and his antics in Parliament. “Don’t touch me on my studio” was another in response to former AWB leader André Visagie's infamous interview on the SABC and “Vote” cupcakes were a hit during the elections.

*Sealy McMurrey and Alexa Cole are on an SIT Study Abroad program () and produced this story in association with Round Earth Media.

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