YOU have to question Helen Zille’s sense of political timing. Jacob Zuma, having completed the most extraordinary political comeback, was sworn in as President. The nation, battered by successive acts of political bloodshed, finally breathed a sigh of relief as Zuma rose to reach out to his Nemesis, Thabo Mbeki. Nelson Mandela, making his backing for Zuma unquestionable, hauled himself to the Union Buildings at great personal cost to watch in approval.
Zuma delivered two speeches which emphasised reconciliation, nation-building and an emphasis on speeding up service delivery.
Don’t get dewy eyed. It was all a fantastic work of political spin-doctoring delivered by a politician at the top of his game and much of it will unravel in the years to come unless he tackles the public service, which he appears to have given scant attention.
But any observer of politics not driven by their emotions, would have to acknowledge that he created and then capitalised on a national mood of relief and renewal very effectively.
Enter Helen Zille in cloak and dagger. Zuma, she spits, is endangering the health of his wives with his promiscuity and has extended the Cabinet’s size so he can appoint token women into lesser positions. She ignores the appointment of Lindiwe Sisulu as Defence Minister, Nkosazana Zuma as Home Affairs Minister and Maite Nkoana-Mashabane to Foreign Affairs. She ignores the fact that she appointed an all male Cabinet in the Western Cape province.
She does not tackle the substance of his re-organisation of Cabinet with a new Planning Commission to be headed up by Trevor Manuel or, if she does, it is drowned out by her shrieking at his personal life.
Is she right or is she wrong? Who cares, it goes down like a lead balloon. It’s all about the timing. There seems to be a collective sigh that down other side the Mason-Dixon line in the Western Cape, they seem to have lost the plot.
The first major encounter of the Zuma era has been decisively won by Zuma.
Cast your vote in my online poll (in the sidebar to the right of this post) on whether or not Helen Zille’s comments on Jacob Zuma endangering his wives with his promiscuity were out of line or not.
“Whether or not Helen Zille’s comments on Jacob Zuma endangering his wives with his promiscuity were out of line or not.”
Of course they where not out of line in any way. This statement is perfectly true. He could have easily given his wives HIV with all the unprotected *** he’s been having. Simple.
Hey Ray…. with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight, was Helen Zille right or what?
It’s interesting reading some of these older posts – it looks like Helen Zille has become a bit more than a one trick pony since especially given the results of the May 2011 elections.
Regardless, she still has much work to do in order to secure some black votes. If only she would learn to pick her battles more wisely.