The National Freedom Party  (NPF) is calling on president Cyril Ramaphosa and police minister, Bheki Cele, to step down following the violent unrest that has claimed more than 300 lives in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

The riots were triggered by the incarceration of former president Jacob Zuma.

In an open letter to the Speaker of the National Assembly Thandi Modise, the NFP says the loss of life, damage to infrastructure and racial tensions could have been avoided if the country’s leadership had responded more urgently.

“We hereby notice the president of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa and police minister Bheki Cele to step down with immediate effect due to the recent unrest which was not taken seriously,” says the NFP’s Innocent Magwaza.

In total, 337 South Africans lost their lives during the unrest, more than 20 of them were killed in Phoenix.

A memorial service was held on Friday for one of the alleged victims of the unrest in the township, 41-year-old Delani Khumalo.

Many of his colleagues from the arts sector came out to mourn his passing, which is believed to have occurred while he was in Phoenix to look for fuel. His car was also burnt.

It is not yet clear who killed him.

Founder of the KwaMashu Community Advancement Project, Edmund Mhlongo, says they are devastated by his death.

Mhlongo had travelled the world with Khumalo for a number of stage plays showcasing South African talent.

Confronting race relations in communities in and around Phoenix after the recent riots: