Thursday, September 27, 2012

Is a second term for President Zuma really such a bad idea?

Although we must welcome South Africa's newspapers vigorously taking political sides at last - it is an essential part of building a democracy - what is the purpose of the general and relentless press campaign against President Jacob Zuma when the ANC will be returned to power anyway?
If it is to influence public opinion against him, we must remind ourselves the SA public have no direct say in the selection or election of their president. None of the supposed, or shortly to be proposed, ANC candidates says anything that suggests he has different policies to offer and all defer to what they are pleased to call the collective wisdom of the party. Indeed, Kgalema Motlanthe, punted as the best available alternative, has demonstrated he does so in practice, when he acted - or as many would see it, failed to act independently - as stand-in president.
A second term for President Zuma has for some considerable time been looking like the soundest way forward. There is no candidate evidently more acceptable within the divided and in many ways demoralised ANC and alliance. A second term would at least provide a measure of stability for the party and country, which is what Cosatu evidently settled and voted for at their congress last week.
And most important, a second term would allow for the orderly development of opposition, even accelerate it, while Jacob Zuma’s supporters would be pacified by their president getting a deserved second chance to prove his detractors wrong.
How does change for change’s sake beat all that?


1 comment:

Bruce Cooper said...

President's can influence policy, be corrupt and steer a ship off course - albeit even slightly. So, it's less about protocol than it is about the man. Zuma is allegedly corrupt and seeks ways, through maverick crony appointments and skewing the Secrecy Bill, to manipulate situations for his self-serving ends. Motlanthe, Ramaphosa, Sexwale or Manuel may be less inclined to such anomalies. For this reason, I still believe in the 'anyone but Zuma' course even though the names mentioned above may not be perfect.

Bruce Cooper