South Africans hold nationwide protests against President Jacob Zuma

He urged South Africans to co-exist and tolerate one another, around the common vision of social justice, reducing inequality, maintaining political stability and national unity. And Moses went to Pharaoh and what did Moses say to Pharaoh? Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa described the move as "totally, totally unacceptable", and ANC general secretary Gwede Mantashe said the ministerial shake-up made him "jittery and uncomfortable".

"I'm warning you that we will pray as we prayed for the downfall of the apartheid government".

"We need to unite and fight this corruption", said Michelle Fortune, 48, a manager who declined to say where she works. "Freedom from state capture. freedom from self-enrichment, freedom to all the people of South Africa", he said to cheers as the audience repeated his chant of "let my people go".

Pravin Gordhan, who was sacked as finance minister in a late-night Cabinet reshuffle a week ago, was widely respected for his anti-corruption stance. The move by Zuma has caused the South African economy to be given a "junk" rating by two of the worldwide financial ratings agencies widely seen as a move to allow a controversial nuclear deal with Russian Federation to go through, as well as allowing the Gupta family to buy a bank in the country, neither of which Gordhan would allow as Minister of Finance. Standard and Poor's downgraded South Africa to #junkstatus shortly after, and Fitch followed suit.

Pressure within the ruling African National Congress has been growing for Zuma to step down after he recalled Gordhan from a trade trip in London March 27. Repeatedly, in the face of the threat of downgrades, the IFP had warned Zuma against reckless, ill-informed, and irresponsible decisions around economic matters because they would have detrimental effects for South Africa.

Some also protested outside the house owned by the rich Indian family Guptas.

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The group said the protests were not about removing the ANC as the ruling party.

Mr Zuma has said there was nothing improper in the way he chose ministers.

In most cases, marchers assembled peacefully. "We are unhappy about his leadership because he does not seem to care about the people". Zuma "has lost all moral legitimacy to govern and therefore should do the honorable thing and step down".

"The economy is not an instrument to settle petty factional and political scores within the ANC; and every time Mr Zuma ventures down this avenue it is South Africans that suffer. The people of South Africa are sick and exhausted of you!" he told Zuma. Most shops have been closed in the country's economic hub Johannesburg.

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