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Jonathan Ball

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

A Look at Who Rules South Africa? Mandy de Waal Provides a Breakdown of SA’s Power Elite

Who Rules South Africa?The Daily Maverick’s Mandy de Waal has written about South Africa’s power elite. Starting with who was in the inner circle at the ANC gala fund-raising dinner which was held in January, De Waal looks at the business assets and connections of the people that President Jacob Zuma told to align with the ANC as “their fortunes would multiply if they threw their lot in with the ruling party”.

De Waal also quotes from Who Rules South Africa?: Pulling the strings in the battle for power by Martin Plaut and Paul Holden, who point to the “BEE moguls and senior security advisers” that are involved in the president’s camp as being the most powerful politically, although not necessarily financially.

If you want to know who South Africa’s power elite are, you should have been at the ANC gala fund-raising dinner held in Durban on Friday 11 January 2013, to celebrate the ruling party’s 101st anniversary. Predictably, ANC benefactor and local mining billionaire, Patrice Motsepe, was there and reportedly paid R500,000 to sit at the same table as president Jacob Zuma, Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu, and other ANC leaders.

Another big-time ANC benefactor who was present was Robert Gumede, founder of the controversial IT group Gijima, which was embroiled in a tender fracas with Home Affairs. Gumede also has interests in the energy sector in South Africa, Zambia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Kenya. Through the Guma Group, he also has interests in mining resources; property; water sanitation and dams; hydro, nuclear, coal and turbine power; infrastructure; and construction.

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