Daniel Silke: Zuma will fight to live another day | Fin24
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Daniel Silke: Zuma will fight to live another day

Mar 20 2016 17:30

Cape Town - Political analyst Daniel Silke is not convinced that President Jacob Zuma will be recalled or censured in any public way.

In a studio interview with News24Live Silke said there will certainly be a line drawn internally as the party is already facing a difficult election campaign.

"Zuma may well live to fight on another day, but his credibility has been damaged... consistently.

"I see it as a sort of a heavyweight boxing match - Zuma's the heavyweight receiving some incredibly damaging body blows. There is no knock-out punch here as yet, simply because I think he still has vested interests in patronage via the national executive committee."

Silke said he thinks most of the NEC are beholden to Zuma. "It is highly unlikely that you would have sufficient consternation to turn the NEC against Zuma."

The most important issue to watch, Silke said, is whether Jacob Zuma would get it right to do another cabinet reshuffle.

"This won't happen as a result of the NEC immediately, but if Zuma does reshuffle his cabinet and can extract those rebels who have spoken out against the Guptas, if he can successfully do that we will then see that he would have received substantial support in the NEC to do that.

"If the cabinet reshuffle does not take place, then indeed Zuma's power will continue to be whittled away... he simply won't have enough control to manipulate his own cabinet, so I think the effects of the NEC may not be seen immediately... but it might come out in the wash in actions from government and Jacob Zuma in the weeks and months thereafter."


The good news about what's happened in the last week or so is that in a sense "we're confronting our demons", said Silke.

"We confronting much of what's been wrong in South Africa, not just in economic terms which Pravin Gordhan has really been starting to do since he ascended to power back in the Ministry of Finance, but also in terms of governance issues in South Africa, ethical issues within government as well, and of course the influence of outsiders, these elements of state capture as it is called.

"This is now coming out to our public discourse. It is part and parcel of what South Africans are talking about. I'd much rather we talk about it than sweep it under the carpet. On that basis I think I'm a little bit happier, despite the negativity... at least it's being discussed as openly as it is and also very much from within the ANC as well."

Silke expressed concern for the extraneous outside influence on our politics, allegedly from the Guptas. "Clearly I think the business linkages that exists between the Guptas, the government and even for that matter allegedly the family of Jacob Zuma, these linkages are over time going to become a lot more apparent.

"The conditionality of offerings of cabinet posts, the kickbacks, the favours required as a result of receiving a cabinet position - these are now starting to enter our public discourse. We know what they are to a degree or certainly we know the rumours about them and I think this is clearly a course for concern."

Silke said it's interesting that with these revelations really come a much more serious look at the Zuma presidency. "It's almost as if issues surrounding Nkandla, the spy tape issue, the al-Bashir saga - all of these issues that have come to the fore in the last year or so and even in the last few months, of all of those the most serious issue is indeed the issue of state capture and the influence of the Guptas, because it really goes to the heart of governance in South Africa, to the heart of our constitution and of course of the ANC."


jacob zuma  |  gupta family  |  daniel silke  |  sa politics


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