CHRIS ROPER: The meaning of Nkandla, a decade later
It’s more than a decade since the news of Zuma’s upgrade of his homestead broke. Why is it that Nkandla still holds such force as a symbol?
Every couple of years or so, I get a rash of interview requests from news organisations, local and international, to talk about Mandy Rossouw’s 2009 Mail & Guardian story that broke the scandal of Nkandla to the world. You could do an interesting visualisation of these interviews over time, as they are pegged to what could be termed Jacob Zuma crisis points: moments in the sadly twinned histories of our diminishing democracy and its most destructive politician.
This week, one of those interviews was with Jeune Afrique, Africa’s most widely read weekly news magazine, founded in Tunisia in 1960. Let’s take a moment to give a shout out to that sort of longevity. I googled "Financial Mail launch date" so I could make fun of the upstarts who edit these pages, and wow — the FM was founded in 1959...