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Duduzane Zuma says video of him pleading with ’people to protest and loot responsibly’ taken out of context

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Duduzane Zuma insists that he did not instigate the flare-up of unrest that led to looting and the destruction of property in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Duduzane Zuma. File picture

DUDUZANE Zuma insists that he did not instigate the flare-up of unrest that led to looting and the destruction of property in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Zuma, who was part of clean-up campaigns at the weekend, reiterated that he did not have a social media account.

Speaking to Newzroom Afrika on Monday, he said he disagreed with sentiments that he instigated the unrest.

“That is the furthest thing from the truth and if you look at my history and what I stand for, that is contrary to my belief and my value system.”

Zuma charged that a part of the clip he recorded, in which he said those who were protesting and looting should do so carefully and responsibly, was taken out of context and blown out of proportion.

“If you play the entire clip you will understand what I was trying to say,” he said.

Zuma noted that his 11-minute video clip was recorded three to four days into the eruption of the unrest.

“There is obviously a lot said about me and my participation in what is happening in the country right now, a lot of finger pointing in my direction, which is the furthest thing from the truth.”

He said he had condemned the violence and the large-scale looting and destruction of property.

“I also spoke about certain platforms that I do not form part of and that have been used under my name. lf people watch the video, they will understand I was trying to make the point (but) people (are) try taking it out of context,” he said.

“What I was saying, I have said this in public before, the events that have led up to whatever is happening in the country and those people that are responsible for anything untoward should be brought to book.

“I was denying my involvement and, at that point, I was speaking about a lot of tension, apprehensiveness and anxiety in (the) country, rightfully so.”

Zuma said some people ended up protecting their communities in whichever way they could.

“I was speaking about them doing so in a responsible way, being safe, as well as others that may be in areas the widespread unrest was happening.”

He said the few underlying issues that caused the problems in the country would continue to do so if they were not dealt with.

Asked if he was worried that law enforcement agencies might come his way as one of the instigators, Zuma said he was aware that DA leader John Steenhuisen has laid charges at a police station in Durban.

“That’s fine. People will do what they need to do and fight for what they believe in. (From) my side, there is no such thing, as I said, I denounced it.”

Zuma said it was the second time he had been accused of wrongdoing.

He said law enforcement agencies should view the clip as a whole and “see I am not instigating any violence and they will understand that a lot of stuff has been taken out of context in relation to the content I was speaking about”.

Zuma said there was a social media account that seemed to be his but he had distanced himself from it numerous times.

“I will say one more time. I am not social media and I have never been.”

Asked if he took responsibility for how the video clip was interpreted since 212 people have died, Zuma said he sympathised with those affected.

“I cannot take any responsibility at this point because I was not part of instigation of any sort.

“This message popped up, maybe three days into the unrest, and I was trying to clear up certain misgivings, so I am definitely not the basis or origins of whatever is happening. I cannot be expected to take responsibility because I have not instigated any violence.”

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