It may not happen…

Click here to find out what the Daily Telegraph is saying about South Africa and the prospect of a Zuma presidency in an article headed “South Afria fears the worst from Jacob Zuma”. See below for The Liberal Revolution’s response:

The article ‘South Africa fears the worst from Jacob Zuma’ is a blatant distortion of the mood of the South African people. To paint the prospect of a Zuma state presidency as a catastrophe smacks of emotive scaremongering.

Of course there is fear and uncertainty, but there are many people that positively relish the thought of a President Zuma. With the unacceptably slow pace of service delivery and economic empowerment, the bourgeoisie ruling class – typified by the aloof and haughty Mbeki – has become, over time, reviled by the increasingly marginalised masses. In a masterstoke of public relations, they have been seduced by Zuma’s charisma and empathy. Ironic really, considering he is as much of a “caviar kid” as the flashiest of Mbeki’s Gucci-loafered acolytes.

A Zuma presidency is far from a foregone conclusion (as the article implies), with most South Africans adopting the “wait-and-see” approach. Even in business circles, all is far from doom and gloom.

In the Tuesday editorial of the influential financial daily, Business Day, it says: “We do not fear a Zuma presidency in Tshwane [Pretoria]. Don’t be scared. If Zuma can appreciate … the value of not surrounding himself with friends as advisers and ministers and can hire people who will speak the truth to him, he will be a big success.”

In the same edition, the main story, entitled “Rating agencies give Zuma benefit of doubt”, reveals that provided Zuma keeps economic policy on course (as he claims he will do), South Africa’s optimistic credit ratings will not be downgraded.

It is too early to say what the future holds for South Africa. To write it off at this juncture as a Zimbabwe just waiting to happen is first world condescension at its very worst.

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