Here’s a look at the life of Jacob Zuma,President of South Africa.
Birth date: April 12, 1942
Birth place: Nkandla, KwaZulu-Natal Province,
Birth name: Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma
Father: Gcinamazwi Zuma, police officer
Mother: Nobhekisisa Bessie, domestic worker
Marriages: Bongi Ngema (April 20, 2012-
present); Thobeka Stacy Mabhija (January 4,
2010-present); Nompumelelo Ntuli (January 5,
2008-present); Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini
(1982-1998, divorce); Kate Mantsho Zuma
(1976-2000, her death); Gertrude Sizakele
Khumalo Zuma (1973-present)
Children: Reportedly has more than 20 children.
1958 – Joins the African National Congress (ANC)
which is banned in South Africa in 1960.
1962 – Becomes a member of the Umkhonto we
Sizwe (Spear of the Nation), the military arm of
1963-1973 – Arrested with other Spear of the
Nation members and convicted of conspiring to
overthrow the South African government. Zuma
spends 10 years in prison on Robben Island.
1975 – Flees South Africa and lives in exile for 15
years in Swaziland, Mozambique, Zambia and
several other African countries, while continuing
his work with the ANC.
February 1990 – President F. W. de Klerk lifts the
ban on the ANC and other opposition groups, and
Zuma returns to South Africa.
1990 – At the ANC’s first Regional Congress in
KwaZulu-Natal province, he is elected chairperson
of the Southern Natal region and takes a leading
role in fighting violence in the region. This results
in peace accords between the ANC and the
Inkatha Freedom Party.
December 1994 – He is elected as the National
Chairperson of the ANC.
1997-2007 – Deputy President of the ANC.
October 1998 – Receives the Nelson Mandela
Award for Outstanding Leadership in Washington
1999-2005 – Deputy President of South Africa.
June 2, 2005 – A South African court finds
businessman Schabir Shaik guilty of bribing Zuma
with over $180,000 between 1995 and 2002.
June 14, 2005 – President Thabo Mbeki fires
Zuma over his alleged involvement in the Shaik
December 6, 2005 – Charged with raping a
young female family friend in his home; he claims
the sex was consensual. He is acquitted of the
rape May 8, 2006. Zuma knew the woman was
HIV positive and drew criticism from health
advocates when he said he showered afterward to
“minimize the risk of contracting the disease.”
September 5, 2006 – Brought to trial and
charged with corruption for allegedly accepting
bribes from French arms company Thint Holdings.
September 20, 2006 – The corruption charges
are dismissed by the court after numerous
extensions by prosecutors to build the state’s
December 18, 2007-present – President of the
African National Congress
December 28, 2007 – New corruption charges
are brought against Zuma, along with counts of
racketeering and money laundering.
May 1, 2008 – Named one of Time’s 100 Most
September 12, 2008 – Corruption charges
against Zuma are tossed out by the court a
second time, this time on procedural grounds.
Prosecutors announce an appeal on September
January 12, 2009 – The Supreme Court of
Appeal overturns the lower court ruling that threw
out corruption charges against Zuma, stating that
the ruling was riddled with errors. This new ruling
means that the National Prosecuting Authority
can press new charges against Zuma, pertaining
to bribes he allegedly accepted from the French
arms company Thint Holdings.
April 6, 2009 – Prosecutors drop all corruption
charges against Zuma.
April 26, 2009 – The African National Congress
wins a majority of votes in South African elections,
ensuring that its leader, Jacob Zuma, will be the
country’s next president.
May 9, 2009 – Inaugurated as President of South
February 2010 – Zuma admits to fathering a
child out of wedlock with Sonono Khoza, daughter
of the head of South Africa’s World Cup organizing
December 2010 – Zuma files a $700,000
defamation lawsuit over a 2008 political cartoon
which portrays him raping a female figure
March 20, 2012 – The Supreme Court of Appeal
rules that the Democratic Alliance (an opposition
party) can challenge a previous court’s decision to
drop corruption charges against Zuma.
August 22, 2012 – In an interview with a
national government television station, Zuma
controversially says, “I know that people today
think being single is nice. It’s actually not right.
That’s a distortion. You’ve got to have kids. Kids
are important to a woman because they actually
give an extra training to a woman, to be a
December 18, 2012 – Zuma is reelected as head
of the ANC. Cyril Ramaphosa is elected as his
December 26, 2012 – At a rally, Zuma tells
supporters that owning a dog as a pet is part of
“white culture” and not African culture. He later
clarified those comments through his spokesman
saying he was trying to warn people against
loving pets more than humans.
March 19, 2014 – Zuma has benefited from a
$23 million dollar publicly-funded presidential
security upgrade to his private residence ,
according to a report issued by the public
protector of South Africa. Additions include a
visitor center, swimming pool, amphitheater and
7th May,2014- Zuma goes to vote for his second term as SA President.
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