"EFF National Shutdown Successful"
Thousands of South Africans took to the streets on Monday, 20 March, calling on President Cyril Ramaphosa to resign for alleged incompetence.
According to Reuters, the national shutdown was successful to the extent that many businesses were closed and workers stayed away for lack of transport.
The South African government deployed security forces to guard malls and streets to prevent any violence and looting.
In a statement, the national intelligence body NatJOINTS said that as of 10 PM, more than 550 protesters had been arrested since Sunday night on such charges as public violence, intimidation, damage to critical infrastructure and theft.
The protests, dubbed national shutdown, were led by the Marxist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).
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They were protesting against the governing African National Congress (ANC)’s failure to provide reliable electricity and jobs.
Addressing a large crowd gathered at Church Square in Pretoria’s city centre before marching to the president’s office, EFF leader Julius Malema, said:
We are not going to do anything. We just walk nicely and raise our concerns.
The majority of EFF supporters are poor black South Africans who feel marginalised since the ANC ended white minority rule in 1994.
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