Zuma was speaking at a rally at Phatudi College near Burgersfort as part of the ANC’s 105-year celebrations on Sunday.
The crowd shouted “dibukau”‚ which means books in Sepedi‚ every time Zuma chanted “amandla”.
This unexpected response came amid complaints that textbooks and stationery were not delivered to some primary and high schools when they reopened last week.
Anna Mashego said her two children and two grandchildren did not receive any stationery.
“I had to go out and buy stationery with grant money. It’s bad now because there is no food in the house‚” Mashego said.
Saul Mogala echoed Mashego’s sentiments‚ saying his two children had not received books.
“We love the ANC with our whole hearts but we are not happy with the service delivery. Now we have to buy stationery out of our own pockets‚” Mogala said.
Zuma said the government would focus on decreasing the number of new HIV infections and spoke about land redistribution and education.