Earlier this year, at the funeral of the Zulu war historian David Rattray, a very senior ANC official was overheard telling his companion that if Jacob Zuma became president, it was time to flee South Africa.
More recently, another high-ranking ANC member told a British newspaper that most, if not all, of the officials who have been handling South Africa’s finances in the 13 years since Mandela came to power would abandon their posts under a Zuma presidency.
These bleak assessments of a future South Africa ruled by a man whose signature tune is Mshini Wami – “Bring Me My Machine Gun” – have been echoing through the corridors of Cape Town’s parliament buildings, in Johannesburg’s glittering offices, and in the affluent, gated residential communities all over the country for most of 2007.
Wonder if that’s on iTunes.
Botswana, Namibia, Mozambique, Swaziland, Lesotho, Angola – even Zambia and Malawi – depend on an economically vibrant South Africa. So a great deal rides on the man who will succeed Thabo Mbeki as president.