Jeremy Gordin Interviewed on Zuma
“He’s not very trusting of journalists,” said Jacob Zuma’s unofficial biographer, Jeremy Gordin, in what must surely count as an understatement – considering the astonishing amounts for which the ANC president is suing the likes of media movers and shakers like Zapiro.
In an interview with Margaret von Klemperer, Gordin, winner of the Mondi Shanduka Newspaper Journalist of the Year award earlier this year, describes his book as “a straightforward political biography” telling the remarkable story of the rise, fall, and rise again of his subject.
Zuma: A biography is due out at the beginning of next month:
According to Gordin, Zuma rose through the ANC on Thabo Mbeki’s coat-tails. One thing he says he learnt while researching and writing is how close the relationship between the two men was. “They were joined at the hip,” he says. “Everywhere Mbeki went, Zuma was his point man. Now it’s a ‘broedertwis’, two brothers falling out.”
The current situation — the recall of Mbeki and the fallout from Judge Chris Nicholson’s judgment in the Pietermaritzburg High Court dealing with the fairness or otherwise of the NPA’s decision to charge Zuma — has obviously come at a good time for Gordin’s book. It is the point at which he ends it, although Zuma’s story looks set to run for some time yet.
It is also full of strange echoes. Gordin talks about how, in 2005, Mbeki fired Zuma after the Shaik case “over a court case in which a little grey-haired judge presides”. Then, in September this year, Zuma’s ANC fired Mbeki after another court case in which a little grey-haired judge presided. “It’s like riffs in music. The same tune but new embroidery on it.
Photo courtesy the Witness
- Zuma, A Biography by Jeremy Gordin
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