Ramaphosa says while everyone has a right to protest, there can never be justification for violent and destructive action that affects the rights of others.
He says it is a matter of concern that some of these acts of violence are based on ethnic mobilization.
Protestors demanding that Zuma be released have torched buildings and vehicles in parts of KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
Ramaphosa says this will not be tolerated.
“Let us be clear as a nation that we will not tolerate any acts of criminality. We will not tolerate any acts of vandalism. Those who are involved in acts of violence will be arrested and prosecuted. Those found guilty of violating the lockdown regulations will receive the stipulated penalty. This will be done without any fear or favor,” he says.
The president’s call comes as some protestors in KwaZulu-Natal looted stores at the Umlazi Mega City Mall, south of Durban.
Police had to use rubber bullets to try and disperse them.
Sthembiso Kubheka is among the frustrated residents from the area who was at the mall when the looting began. An agitated Kubheka explains that he was separated from his two young children in the chaos.
“They’re very young, they’re very young, cause I jumped off from work. I rather bring all the taxi violence here this is not good. I lost my kids now. I am supposed to come and fetch my kids. This is not good.” – SABC