Friday, 8 May 2009

The merry wives of KwaZulu Natal

President Zuma of South Africa is setting something of a first in “modern” sub-Saharan Africa by currently being the possessor of three wives, as well having and ex-wife in the cabinet as a ‘political advisor and minister.

Although this trend for polygamy is dying out amongst educated black Africans (in Southern Africa) according to political analyst Protas Madlala, it is still popular amongst, the poor & uneducated in rural areas (such as where Mr Zuma was brought up).

Is this therefore a backward step for a south Africa already displaying many symptoms of post independence Africa … Corruption is now largely unchecked with the closure of the scorpion police anti corruption unit. And there appears to be political interference of the judicial system, with the dropping of Mr Zuma’s ‘trial’ for alleged corruption.

Are we seeing a movement towards ‘traditional’ African politics where the ‘Big Man’ sets the laws and his whim become ‘policy’?

Who knows? And only time will tell.

But for sure, the election of a man with so much political and ethical baggage doesn’t appear on the face of it to be a forward step for a country whose future is in the balance.

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