South Africa’s demise is an affront to the memory of Nelson Mandela

South African President Jacob Zuma Not since OJ Simpson was charged with murder has a trial captivated global media quite like that of Oscar Pistorius. The former paralympian’s murder of Reeva Steenkamp, his girlfriend, has prompted remarkable scenes inside and outside the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria where his sentencing will soon be complete. But perhaps because of the limited bandwidth of international media, Pistorius’s trial, gripping and emotive though it undoubtedly is, may have deflected attention from the bigger story in his nation.

Steadily, surely, and not very subtly, South Africa is being suffocated by a despotic leader whose Lear-like tendencies have reduced his country to beggary and betrayed the promise of its late moral and political giant, Nelson Mandela. Jacob Zuma is paradoxically weak, ineffective and self-serving, and utterly unsuited to the public office that he now obtains. If the first task of a government is to preserve the security of its people, and the second is to advance the cause of justice, the third is to steward the economy in a way that works for all. Right now, Zuma’s appalling leadership – if it’s worthy of such a label – is turning an economy that even […]

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