Government officials who bad-mouth President Jacob Zuma on social media face being fired from their positions and disciplinary action.
According to a report by the City Press, a charge sheet seen by the newspaper shows that senior employees in Department of Public Service and Administration face action over posts they made on their personal social media accounts against Zuma.
Another official who faces charges is Brent Simons, director for training and development in the Department of Communications.
The report stated that Simons is being charged over statements he made about Zuma and King Goodwill Zwelithini, and was “demoted and transferred” in 2015 because of the comments.
The posts which got Simons into trouble included:
- “Zuma has no shame. He just screwed the entire nation on national TV. You are corrupt and should have resigned.”
- “The current ANC NEC has their heads so far up Zuma’s backside we can call them Zumastriches.”
The charge sheet states that Simons’ posts downgraded the president of the ANC – his employer – to “junk status”.
The Department of Public Service and Administration denied that Simons had been demoted, but confirmed the case of misconduct against him.
Save SA’s Lawson Naidoo said the intolerance for different views shown by the government “has no place in our democracy”.
The City Press said the government has previously fired staff members for posting controversial statements on social media which were deemed inappropriate.
The full report is in the City Press of 20 November 2016.