27 Apr

South Africa may have many more years of Zuma rule to come

There is growing speculation in South Africa that president Jacob Zuma is lining up his ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, to succeed him as leader of the ruling African National Congress party. He must step down before elections in 2019.

Until recently the head of the African Union Commission, Dlamini-Zuma previously held ministerial posts in South Africa including home and foreign affairs.

President Zuma has not formally declared his support, but has called for the ANC to be led by a woman – a statement seen by many as a de-facto endorsement.

Support for her is seen as an attempt by the president to retain political influence after he steps down. This could spell more trouble for the country’s beleaguered economy. Rising political risk under Zuma’s scandal-prone presidency was the main driver behind unprecedented sovereign debt downgrades by Fitch & S&P earlier this month.

With more almost two years left until the next general election, much of this is speculation. But Zuma has a long and distinguished track-record at outmanoeuvring his political opponents. He is not someone to bet against.

Distributed by: WhyAfrica.com

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