News / Africa

South Africa Denies Zuma Health Rumors

FILE - South African President Jacob Zuma delivers his State of the Nation address at Parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, June 17, 2014.
FILE - South African President Jacob Zuma delivers his State of the Nation address at Parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, June 17, 2014.
Peter Clottey
The spokesman for South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma has dismissed reports the country’s leader is in poor health, following his recent visit to the hospital.

President Zuma spent two days in a hospital after the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party said it gave the leader a break following a “hectic campaigning” period before the May 7 general election.

Mac Maharaj insists Zuma is in good health and has been working hard and long hours at the office.

His comments followed a local newspaper report, which cited sources from the ANC suggesting Zuma is suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes and heart problems.  Maharaj rejected the newspaper report as rumor mongering.

“The doctors attending to the president are satisfied, there is no reason or cause to be concerned about his health,” said Maharaj.  “He is fine he is back fully on duty, at the same time we would like to state clearly that we do not engage in gossip and rumors around his health.”

Some analysts have demanded assurances from the presidency arguing the president appeared to have lost weight after he was recently hospitalized.

But Maharaj disagreed, saying the administration has been forthright with South Africans about Zuma’s health conditions.

“When the president needed rest we said so publicly, the doctors confirmed it to us.  Then the doctors carried out tests, made it a major examination, he was kept in hospital for 24 hours for thorough check up, and they discharged him satisfied with the results, and he is now back with his public engagements, as well as his office work.”

"Tiredness is something that affects everybody,” Maharaj said.  “The president is working extraordinarily long and hard hours.”

But some opponents have demanded the presidency provide proof of Zuma’s good health, by making it public.  Again, Maharaj dismissed the demand as without merit.

“Why do we have to prove rumors and gossips to be unfounded?  If we were to spend our time engaging in rumors and gossip, we will spend all our lives just repudiating rumors, and then having to prove, whereas the gossip does not require to be proved,” Maharaj said.

Supporters of the ANC say the newspaper report is politically motivated to speculate that President Zuma is unlikely to serve his second full term in office due to poor health.  But opponents contend the president’s reported poor health conditions should be of concern to all South Africans.

“I don’t want to engage with the gossip and rumor mongering around the president’s health.  I do not want to give them credibility,” said Maharaj.
Clottey interview with Mac Maharaj, President Zuma's spokesman
Clottey interview with Mac Maharaj, President Zuma's spokesmani
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Republican Majority in Congress Off to Rough Start

Standoff over Homeland Security funding exposes philosophical, tactical problems within party More

Pakistan Blocks Baloch Activist from US Trip

Human Rights Commission of Pakistan slams Islamabad officials for stopping people from leaving country to attend human rights conference More

Video Muslims Long Thrived in North Carolina Before Students Killed

Idyll shattered February 10, when three Muslim university students living in Chapel Hill were gunned down by a neighbor More

ILO: Women Still Losing Out in Global Work Place

International Labor Organization says women are marginally better off now than they were 20 years ago More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: walter from: cape town
June 22, 2014 12:41 PM
maybe we are lucky after all ,,, come guys keep the finger cross ,,this JZ is at the end,,, let make space for "your Honor Jiulius "
so he can continuing the uncivilized distraction of his Brother JZ...
yes.. because they are all made with the same stamp,,, don't you see? they all look like to me!!!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Muslims Long Thrived in N Carolina Before Slaying of 3 Studentsi
X
Jerome Socolovsky
March 05, 2015 9:04 PM
The killings of three Muslim students in North Carolina early last month came as Muslims across the United States have felt under siege, partly as a result of terrorist attacks being committed internationally in the name of their faith. But Muslims have long thrived in university cities in this part of the American South. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Muslims Long Thrived in N Carolina Before Slaying of 3 Students

The killings of three Muslim students in North Carolina early last month came as Muslims across the United States have felt under siege, partly as a result of terrorist attacks being committed internationally in the name of their faith. But Muslims have long thrived in university cities in this part of the American South. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Fuel Shortages in Nigeria Threaten Election Campaigns

Nigeria is suffering a gas shortage as the falling oil price has affected the country’s ability to import and distribute refined fuels. Coming just weeks before scheduled March 28 elections, the shortage could have a big impact on the campaign, as Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA.
Video

Video Report: Human Rights in Annexed Crimea Deteriorating

A new report by Freedom House and the Atlantic Council of the United States says the human rights situation in Crimea has deteriorated since the peninsula was annexed by Russia in March of last year. The report says the new authorities in Crimea are discriminating against minorities, suppressing freedom of expression, and forcing residents to assume Russian citizenship or leave. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video 50 Years Later African-Americans See New Voting Rights Battles Ahead

Thousands of people will gather to mark the 50th anniversary of a historic civil rights march on March 7th in Selma, Alabama. In 1965, dozens of people were seriously injured during the event known as “Bloody Sunday,” after police attacked African-American demonstrators demanding voting rights. VOA’s Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights pioneers who are still fighting for voting rights in Alabama more than 50 years later.
Video

Video Craft Brewers Taking Hold in US Beer Market

Since the 1950’s, the U.S. beer industry has been dominated by a handful of huge breweries. But in recent years, the rapid rise of small craft breweries has changed the American market and, arguably, the way people drink beer. VOA’s Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Ukrainian Authorities Struggle to Secure a Divided Mariupol

Since last month's cease-fire went into effect, shelling around the port city of Mariupol has decreased, but it is thought pro-Russian separatists remain poised to attack. For the city’s authorities, a major challenge is gaining the trust of residents, while at the same time rooting out informants who are passing sensitive information to the rebels. Patrick Wells reports for VOA.
Video

Video Volunteer Gauge-Watchers Help Fine-Tune Weather Science

An observation system called CoCoRaHS is working to improve weather science, thanks to thousands of volunteers across the country who measure precipitation in their own backyards, then share their data through the Internet. VOA's Shelley Schlender reports.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More