Ebrahim Harvey
Ebrahim Harvey

The big Zuma factor

The biggest political question hanging over all our heads at this critical moment in our history is that of Jacob Zuma. What will he do — or not — if and when he becomes the president; not so much of the ANC, but of the country?

Cosatu and the SACP’s frenetic support for Zuma is totally misplaced. The fact that many workers support him does not make it right, even if all of them support him. They are, I think, sadly mistaken in their estimation of Zuma.

Even if we completely forget about the earlier rape and corruption charges, this man who is suddenly a national working-class hero — but only after President Mbeki fired him and Cosatu and the SACP came to his support — has not once publicly differed with the many anti-working-class policies of the ANC since 1994.

Besides, workers are not — and have never been — some gods whose words or actions are beyond question and reproach. They have made countless mistakes in their history and they will make many more. When Cosatu’s history of this period is later written, its support for Zuma, I am confident, will probably be regarded as its biggest political-strategic miscalculation and blunder.