SACLI calls on EFF to reconsider ‘disruptive’ national shutdown plans

EFF leader Julius Malema briefing media yesterday on the party’s planned national shutdown (PHOTO: Jacques Nelles/Eyewitness News/EWN)

The EFF, with the support of SAFTU, have called for a national shutdown on Monday March 20 and have warned businesses to close on the day “or face being looted”, says the South African Christian Leadership Institute (SACLI), in a media release.

“The motivation cited for this national ‘day of action’ is to protest loadshedding and call for the resignation of President Ramaphosa. SACLI shares the concerns of the EFF and SAFTU that loadshedding is causing immeasurable damage to the country. SACLI furthermore is dismayed, as many South Africans are, at the slow pace of improvement in the nation’s trajectory under the leadership of President Ramaphosa,” says the statement signed by Rev Moss Ntlha, chairman of SACLI.

The statement continues: “However, we are conscious of the effects that disruption to the economy have on the millions of hardworking, honest and desperate South Africans. These are the same citizens who suffer from the effects of energy insecurity, water disruptions and lingering poverty and deprivation. Seen together with the current NEHAWU strike, we cannot see how our society can benefit from such a National Shutdown.

“Notwithstanding SACLI’s recognition of the right of citizens to use protest and strike action to express their grievances, further depriving citizens of their right to movement, their right to work and their right to livelihoods is not a solution to South Africa’s immediate problems.

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“It is on this basis that SACLI calls on the EFF and SAFTU to reconsider their plans for disruptive mass action at this time of loadshedding. Instead of bringing the country to a standstill, we pray and work for a country on the move.

“SACLI seeks to work for a country where active citizens can contribute to their community, their family, and their nation. SACLI wants to see South Africans, irrespective of their political persuasion, fulfilling their role in a vibrant democracy, a responsible citizenry and a thriving economy.

“Instead of disrupting businesses, let us celebrate our entrepreneurs and encourage them. Instead of intimidating workers on their way to work, let us cheer them on and find ways to provide more opportunities for gainful employment into active work.

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“Let us mobilise our communities, our faith communities and our leaders, to identify practical actions they can take, to build up our country, rather than break it down. Let us provide leadership from all segments of our society, including the opposition parties and labour movement, to contribute to a better and more prosperous society.

“Let peace, justice and a passion for our nation be the spirit in which we go about our lives as citizens.”

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