The leader of the Christian Democratic Party, Reverend Theunis Botha, described President Jacob Zuma’s traditional wedding as a “giant step back into the dark ages”. I’m sorry Rev, I know I’m meant to revere you but the only thing from the dark ages in this case are your views on this matter (ducks lightning bolt). As you may or may not know, the president of South Africa, Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, married again recently. We have also heard that he has also paid lobola (dowry) for another. I don’t understand Botha’s outrage, after all, the church does encourage marriage. And he seems to be pretty successful at this too, of his five marriages so far only one ended in divorce.

In the early 90s when former president Nelson Mandela appeared to live with Graca Machel, Archbishop Desmond Tutu reprimanded him for setting a bad example to young people by not getting married. Mandela famously and jokingly said, “that’s rich coming from a man who wears dresses”. Madiba was cut some slack by a lot of people because he was after all, Madiba. The only person with balls enough to tell him was the Arch. One thing about the Arch is that he has told every single president exactly what he thinks right from the days of apartheid. I have no idea why I’m going on about Tutu, let’s get back on course.

Despite what his detractors say, he is encouraging marriage by getting married so often. Some people are addicted to drugs, alcohol — not our president. He is addicted to marriage. We certainly won’t see a sudden influx of polygamous marriages because of Zuma. No sir. A lot of men are afraid of getting married to just one women, let alone to five.

The first thing I would like to do is to applaud our president for his bravery, he is unfazed by the thought of having multiple mothers-in-law. The thought of even having one has scared me somewhat for a while. Some day I will have to get over this fear. I will request a meeting with the president at some point and ask for advice on women, he certainly seems to know a lot more about them than most. Not only that — he knows them well enough to convince them to agree to share him. That is remarkable.

Since the reverend called the president’s marriage a thing from the dark ages I would like to quote a book that has been around since before the dark ages. The Bible. The Apostle Paul in his letter to Timothy, otherwise known as 1 Timothy 3:2, says to Timothy “an elder should have but one wife” as he instructs him on what a leader of the church should be like. Zuma does not lead a church, he leads a country, and if he led a church I probably wouldn’t be a member.

I have not seen anything in the Bible that actually forbids polygamy. All we have are interpretations of the intentions of certain verses in the Bible to support the pro or anti-polygamy wings. Since there is no specific provision against it I don’t understand why it is now a dark ages concept. I won’t even go into the men who had more than one wife in the Bible, take Jacob and Solomon for example.

I cannot imagine the stamina, he is almost 70 yet he is still getting married. And is expected to add this his bevy of wives. I don’t think I would have the physical stamina to keep up with so many wives, let alone the emotional staying power. In the words of DJ Fresh, “congratulations on your marriage Mr. president, may you have many more!”

Time magazine said that he is the first African president, as if Mandela and Mbeki were not. Simply because they didn’t flaunt their culture as publicly as our current president doesn’t mean they didn’t observe their culture.

Let the president have his wives as long as they are all happy together. Wait a minute, what am I talking about? I’ve been told that a happy marriage is a contradiction. In that case, let the president have his wives and let them be unhappy ever after together.


Khaya Dlanga

Khaya Dlanga

Khaya Dlanga* By day he perpetuates the evils of capitalism by making consumers feel insecure (he makes ads). For this he has been rewarded with numerous Loerie awards, Cannes Gold, several Eagle awards...

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