Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Will Zuma survive?


Last December, President Jacob Zuma embarked on a series of ill-advised cabinet reshuffles that have shaken South African politics to their core and sent the economy into freefall. ‘Nhlanhla-gate’ threatens to be Zuma’s Waterloo. Simon Allison and Xolela Mangcu weigh his future prospects

The moment things began to go wrong for Jacob Zuma can be dated precisely: Wednesday afternoon, 9 December 2015. The South African president had just concluded a cabinet meeting. He wasn’t happy. He picked up the phone and issued an executive order.

South Africa, along with the president himself, is still reeling from the consequences of that order. Later, even senior cabinet members and ANC leaders would confess to first hearing of the president’s decision through the media.

On the phone, Zuma was communicating his decision to sack respected finance minister Nhlanhla Nene. Nene was to be replaced by David van Rooyen, a lowly backbencher with no financial experience, and virtually unknown outside the ruling party’s inner circle. So unknown, in fact, that official communications offered three different versions of his first name in initial press releases.- See more at:

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