News / Africa

    South African President Zuma Starts 2nd Term

    South African President Jacob Zuma is sworn in for a second term in Pretoria, May 24, 2014.
    South African President Jacob Zuma is sworn in for a second term in Pretoria, May 24, 2014.
    South African President Jacob Zuma was sworn in for a second five-year term Saturday at a pomp-filled event attended by thousands from across the country, with dozens of foreign dignitaries from around the African continent also on hand.
     
    But on the streets, South Africans expressed mixed opinions about five more years in office for a leader who has been embroiled in corruption scandals since first taking office.
     
    Zuma took his second oath of office during a spectacular and colorful ceremony at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, as dozens of sitting heads of state, over 100 ambassadors and thousands of South Africans observed.
     
    A supporter of the ruling African National Congress party checks her accreditation for the inauguration in Pretoria, South Africa, May 24, 2014.A supporter of the ruling African National Congress party checks her accreditation for the inauguration in Pretoria, South Africa, May 24, 2014.
    x
    A supporter of the ruling African National Congress party checks her accreditation for the inauguration in Pretoria, South Africa, May 24, 2014.
    A supporter of the ruling African National Congress party checks her accreditation for the inauguration in Pretoria, South Africa, May 24, 2014.
    The president began his second term after his ruling African National Congress party’s decisive 62 percent win in national elections May 7.
     
    The official ceremony began with Zuma taking the oath of office in front of the country’s chief justice, Mogoeng Mogoeng. He vowed to “be faithful to the republic of South Africa, so help me God.”
     
    The military paid tribute with a 21-gun salute and a series of aircraft flyovers, demonstrating its readiness to protect the president and the nation at large.
     
    In his inauguration speech, Zuma said his second term would “involve the implementation of radical social-economic transformation.”
     
    A scandal-plagued first term
     
    Zuma began his final term in the midst of scandals. Parliament is set to consider a report that alleges millions of dollars in state funds were used for developments at his private rural Nkandla home.  
     
    The official opposition party, the Democratic Alliances (DA), is fighting for the reinstatement of over 800 charges of corruption, tax evasion and money laundering against Zuma.  These had been dropped.
     
    But Zuma’s ruling ANC government has delivered free houses, education, electricity and social grants to millions of the nation’s poor.
     
    His inauguration attracted mixed reactions from South Africans.
     
    Elizabeth Baleni, who did not bother to attend the inauguration ceremony, said Zuma’s second term in office spells doom for South Africa: “This will mean more money spent for his private businesses, more wives at the expense of the state and more corruption for him and his colleagues, more unemployment for youth and a whole lot of things.”
     
    But others have showered praise on Zuma, saying his pro-poor policies have reduced poverty by a wide margin.
     
    A choice for continuity
     
    Sam Mthethwa, 29, said re-electing Zuma was the right thing to do.
     
    “I believe Zuma’s installation will mean continuity,” Mthethwa said, adding it would give the president a chance to complete programs such as a national development plan.
     
    Roger Southall, a sociology professor and political analyst at Johannesburg’s Witwatersrand University, told VOA that Zuma faces a number of challenges.
     
    His second term “could be quite stormy,” Southall said. “II think we will see a continuation of the extensive protests around the country, a mixture of economic growth and continuing political difficulties.”
     
    Many say the ball is now in  Zuma’s court to prove his critics wrong.

    You May Like

    Former US Envoys Urge Obama to Delay Troop Cuts in Afghanistan

    Keeping troop levels up during conflict with both Taliban and Islamic State is necessary to support Kabul government, they say

    First Lady to Visit Africa to Promote Girls' Education

    Michele Obama will be joined by daughters and actresses Meryl Streep and Freida Pinto

    Video NYSE Analyst: Brexit Will Continue to Place Pressure on Markets

    Despite orderly pricing and execution strategy at the New York Stock Exchange, analyst explains added pressure on world financial markets is likely

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora