In the years following his inauguration, President Zuma has faced much criticism, most of which was based on previous charges of corruption as well as questions of his ethics due to his Zulu cultural belief in polygamy and the implications thereof for the taxpayer. The questions, right or wrong, relate to the rights and empowerment of women as the President's beliefs seem to contradict this. In more recent months, a series of events, including the infamous "spear painting" and Marikana have served to undermine the President's leadership which is so crucial if he is to retain his position for a second term following Mangaung 2012.
Again the question rises: What is the President;s own personal agenda and vision? The reality is there has never been a clearly communicated message from the President in this regard. The Democratic Alliance (DA), official opposition party to the government, has been much more successful in communicating its key priorities. While I personally believe that South Africa is not ready to have a party such as the DA in government, it is clear that the African National Congress (ANC) is rapidly losing ground, again mainly due to questions of corruption, ethics and what has often been cited as weak leadership. The ruling party is relying on history, its own hertitage and our fear of having a "white" party in power to maintain the status quo. Again I'm not going to pretend to be an expert in politics or economics but how many South Africans are? Or is it a question of the middle class being overlooked simply because we are not considered to be a vital vote when it comes to it?
The President has been particularly brilliant in forging strategic, working alliances but none of them have withstood the test of time. A good exaple is the increasingly worsening relationship with the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), an organisation that was instrumental in lifting Zuma into the Presidency. It is likely then that should President Zuma retain his position after Mangaung 2012, he will have even more problems and a much weaker position to start his second term.