It’s no tremendous revelation that during his nine years in office former president Jacob Zuma did not bother to acquaint himself with the nuts and bolts of economics or finance. But even within his own limitations, Zuma’s utterances last week about the mooted nuclear deal with Russia spoke of a peculiar detachment from common sense, a casual disdain for facts, and an antipathy towards expertise. Take, for example, this gem of double-speak from his interview with a journalist in this media group: "Nuclear could solve our problems, once and for all. Now we are in deep [trouble], we are therefore increasing the debt of the country with no hope to bring it down." In Zuma’s wacky world, load-shedding is due to the fact that SA didn’t proceed with a nuclear deal that everyone knew was neither necessary nor cost-effective. Perhaps the former president genuinely believed that nuclear power would have been available immediately — maybe flown over in barrels on an old Ilyushin from Lake Irku...

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