Date: August 20 2012
In 2010, the Mail & Guardian for the first time laid out the vast network of private business interests built up by President Jacob Zuma and his family since the ANC's Polokwane conference. Zuma Inc, as we dubbed it, quickly became a source of public controversy, as South Africans questioned the potentially wide array of private interests created for the trading of political and commercial favours.
The rows over iron ore mining rights at Sishen, which drew in Zuma's son, Duduzane, and the asset stripping of the Aurora mine in which his nephew, Khulubuse, was involved, demonstrated of the risks for democracy posed by a presidential family using its connections to build a business empire.
But it is not just in for-profit companies that the President and those closest to him are carrying out questionable financial activities. Zuma and his wives have created a raft of opaque trusts and foundations purporting to act for the greater good.
The President has a government through which to pursue his policy objectives in education and rural development. He should leave the philanthropy for his retirement.
This is an edited extract of an editorial published in the Johannesburg Mail & Guardian yesterday.
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