Mapaila forced to leave Cosatu meeting due to protest outside his home

30 May 2017 - 20:33
By Neo Goba
Solly Mapaila
Image: Gallo Images / Sowetan / Vathiswa Ruselo Solly Mapaila

South African Communist Party second deputy general-secretary Solly Mapaila was on Tuesday forced to rush to his home in Boksburg while attending a Cosatu central committee meeting after a group of alleged supporters of President Jacob Zuma held placards reading "Hands off Zuma" outside his house.

While ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa was delivering a message of support at the Congress of South African Trade Unions 6th central committee meeting in Pretoria on Tuesday‚ Mapaila suddenly stood up and rushed out of the room after receiving an alert.

"Me and my family are alright and they [the protesters] have left my house‚" Mapaila later told TMG Digital.

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He referred all further questions to SACP spokesperson Alex Mashilo who was not immediately available for comment as he was busy at Cosatu's event. But the SACP condemned the protest at Mapaila’s house.

"President Zuma must be worried about this degeneration of the worst form and must distance himself and condemn the cowardly action. The SACP will hold responsible all those who were involved and in their name the shenanigans organised should anything happen to Comrade Solly and his family.

"This legacy of President Jacob Zuma‚ the so-called defence for Zuma‚ is no longer merely anti-intellectual and mediocre. It has become ugly‚ dangerous and life threatening‚" the SACP said in a statement.

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The SACP also blamed the uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans' Association for being behind the protest as the group of protesters were clothed in "MK Foundation" attire.

Mapaila has been leading the charge for Zuma to step down after his recent cabinet reshuffle which resulted in two ratings agencies downgrading South Africa to junk status. Cosatu is also supporting this call and have banned Zuma from speaking at any of their events.