Traditional war songs echoed across the rolling hills of Nkandla as Amabutho (regiments) trekked to Jacob Zuma’s house on Thursday to shield him from arrest.
Handguns, spears and pangas were some of the weapons brandished by scores of the former president’s supporters who gathered outside his compound.
Rural women ululated and jumped up and down as Amabutho chanted traditional songs, usually sung on the battlefield, in support of Zuma.
Wenzeni uZuma? (What has Zuma done?) was one of the songs that united the crowd in chorus.
The crowd erupted as gunshots were also fired in the air by some of Zuma’s supporters.
Some hoisted posters with the words, “Step Down, Cyril Ramaphosa.”
They believe that the president was behind Zuma’s legal woes.
Zuma’s loyal backers vowed to protect him from having to go to prison after the ConCourt sentenced him to 15 months in jail for refusing to appear before the state capture commission.
The court gave Zuma five days – ending on Sunday – to hand himself over to the police either in Nkandla or Joburg.
By late Thursday, police cars had increased as the crowd grew larger.
Earlier on Thursday, Zuma’s die-hard backers convoyed from Durban to Nkandla, some 240 km apart.
Zuma has not given any indication whether he would comply with the ruling of the ConCourt or would ignore the apex court in the country.
But the chief of the Zuma clan in Nkandla, Bhekumuzi Zuma, told Scrolla.Africa that no would arrest Zuma.
“I would rather die.”
He said those who go to Nkandla to arrest him would have to kill them first.
“We will not surrender or retreat. This is a war, and we will fight until the end.”
Zuma’s son, Edward, said he would have to die first before his dad was jailed.
More ANC branches are expected to join Zuma’s supporters in Nkandla on Friday.
The uMkhonto weSizwe veterans have been at Zuma’s house months before Tuesday’s landmark ruling against Zuma.
The nation is waiting to see whether Zuma, who was once the most powerful man in the country, will turn into a jailbird three years after his demise as president.
Video source: NewzRoomAfrika
Image source: @Gentlements