President Jacob Zuma has responded to statements made by Freedom Front Plus (FF+) MP Pieter Groenewald during the president’s State of the Nation Address (Sona) debate on Wednesday.
Groenewald had lashed out at the president for “using white people to shield his government’s inability to grow the economy and create jobs”.
“What do you have against white people in SA?
“Every time there’s something wrong, you blame the white people of SA. You are using the white people of SA as a smokescreen to hide your own inability and incompetences. That is what you are doing; you must say where do you stand on the white people of SA.”
In his response, the president said it was wrong of Groenewald to think that he had something against white people and said that the issue of land had to be resolved.
“We don’t hate whites, we’re just stating facts,” he said.
The president said government had to resolve the issue that the majority of land was owned by whites and that the growing black population did not have land to occupy.
“We’re not pointing at the colour, we’re describing the situation.
“If this is not resolved, it could explode one day,” he said.
The process of land redistribution would be legal and not display any form of hatred, he said. In fact, white people needed to refrain from saying talking about land was because of hatred.
“It will be wise to disabuse yourself from the tendency that when we talk about land and those who own land; you think it’s because of hatred.
“Saying we hate whites won’t make us stop talking about the land issue,” he said. Unlike other countries, South Africa would use the constitution to address the issue, the president said.
Those who own the land must not suggest that those who need it now should buy as they too, did not buy it, he argued.
What the president has suggested was that concerned parties should find a solution that would benefit them.
“Let’s just find a formula to rectify the problem. We all need enough space to live together. This is not racialism.”