Jacob Zuma

West Africa gives cause for hope

Citizens have voted out well-entrenched leaders in a democratic surge in part of the continent, writes Tony Leon

To update Pliny the Elder’s well-worn phrase in my imperfect schoolboy Latin, perhaps it is now apt to write Ex Africa Occidens aliquid novi — Out of West Africa always something new. This modernisation is due to two […]

By |December 15th, 2016|Jacob Zuma, Opinion, South African Politics|0 Comments

From the lofty heights of Mandela to the depraved depths of Zuma

LAST Friday, on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the signing of South Africa‘s constitution, I was, physically and metaphorically confronted by a version of my much younger self. The view was not entirely reassuring.

The event was a reunion, of sorts, in Cape Town: former staff members of the Constitutional Assembly — the South […]

By |December 14th, 2016|Jacob Zuma, Opinion, South African Politics|0 Comments

Plunder, stealing – and this they falsely call a presidency

Tony Leon finds parallels in literature ranging from Superman to Tacitus to ‘Catch-22’ for the plight of the president and his party.

Several notables are cited as originators of the famous formula, “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you.”

Among the claimants is Joseph Heller, author of the iconic 20th-century satirical novel Catch-22.

Proof positive […]

By |December 4th, 2016|International Politics, Jacob Zuma, South African Politics|0 Comments

Corporate world afraid to unite against the presidential road to ruin

Fearful kakophony drowns business voice, writes Tony Leon.

‘Who do I call when I want to speak to Europe?” Apparently, Henry Kissinger never uttered this great quip attributed to him, on the impossibility of receiving a coherent and unified response from the EU.

But the line is useful shorthand right now, with local substitution, to frame the […]

South Africa: Between a snafu and a fubar

On Zuma’s watch, growth has halved, the national debt has doubled and another million are unemployed

THERE‘S a grim choice confronting the US electorate in November between the two most unpopular candidates in polling history. This caused Harvard history professor Niall Ferguson — one of the most erudite and eloquent people on the planet — on […]

Tony Leon: ‘Jan Smuts se woorde steeds waar vir SA’

Hy bly optimisties oor Suid-Afrika se toekoms ondanks die kruispunt van krisisse waar die land hom tans bevind, het Tony Leon Woensdagaand in ’n toespraak voor die Britse parlement se Henry Jackson-vereniging gesê.

Suid-Afrika het presies 22 jaar gelede sy rug op 350 jaar van rasseverdeling, uitbuiting, onderdrukking en ystervuis-regering gedraai. In 1994 het die land […]

Nkandla excesses expose the glaring gap in founding law

The ideologically ramshackle coalition that gathered as the “People’s Consultative Assembly” last weekend at various centres showcased a veritable fruit salad of ideas and personalities.

Ranging from a retired judge to an avant-garde film director and a supporting cast of politicians, they were united by one galvanising idea: removing Jacob Zuma from the presidency.

A petri dish […]

Cronin still doggedly pushing a long-discredited ideology

I will, doubtless, not add longevity to the political shelf-life of Deputy Public Works Minister Jeremy Cronin by expressing admiration for his bravery and eloquence. His marooning in the obscurity of a deputy ministry hardly matches his talents and struggle credentials. But the real wonder of it is that he holds any executive office at […]

A betting guide to Jacob Zuma’s survival

Zuma knows where, figuratively at least, all the bodies are buried and who has been caught in the web of intelligence networks he controls

For those of us who grew up under the unlamented apartheid regime, racial repression was lashed onto dour Calvinism.

This meant that everything from cinemas on Sunday to television (until 1976, at least) […]

President’s qualified apology echoes typical irresponsibility

FRIDAY night’s prime-time television performance by President Jacob Zuma, on the back of the devastating Constitutional Court judgment the day before, was something to behold. It is capable of almost endless interpretations, although the path forward remains unclear.

Gone was the customary giggle, the chuckle and the rictus. Zuma’s qualified and exceedingly rare apology was delivered […]