Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Zuma may not be forgiven for his flamboyant sex life

Millions of South Africans, viewing television images of the Zulu Boy at Buckingham Palace, will wonder why the Queen is honouring a man who back home is rapidly becoming a very bad joke. - Daily Mail

SHOOT: South Africa, as far as I'm concerned, is a bad joke, not just its president. The idea that one can be 'Proudly South African' is farcical. We have much to be ashamed of, and what do we have to be proud of - good weather, wildlife and beautiful scenery, has nothing to do with the people of South Africa. It's like asking a good looking paedophile to stand up, hold his head high and be confident, be proud because the world is watching. And your pride is based on what, the good fortune you had to have good looks?
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The flags of South Africa and Britain fly together on the Mall in London in preparation for Zuma's visit

One thing is clear. Jacob Zuma could not be more different from the man in whose long shadow he must walk - South Africa's great and first democratic leader, Nelson Mandela.

The truth is that corruption is now so prevalent that South Africans have lost their capacity to be shocked by it.

But Zuma may not be forgiven for his flamboyant sex life. Having been acquitted of rape, then mobbed by jubilant supporters, Zuma believed he was beyond criticism.

Yet he now finds himself in political difficulty after the recent revelation of the birth of the 20th acknowledged child, to a woman in Durban. This broke a deal he made with the party that even if he could not conquer his libido, he would at least behave with discretion, and stop impregnating casual sexual partners.

Like the 19th-century missionaries who attempted to stamp it out, the ruling ANC party disapproves of polygamy, partly because it reinforces white men's stereotypes of Africans as somehow uncivilised.

Jacob Zuma with one of his four wives
Zuma with three of his wives: Sizakele, right, Nompumelo, left, and Thobeka
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