About the book:
The face of power in South Africa is rapidly changing – for better and for worse. The years since Thabo Mbeki was swept aside by Jacob Zuma’s ‘coalition of the wounded’ have been especially tumultuous, with the rise and fall of populist politicians such as Julius Malema, the terrible events at Marikana, and the embarrassing Guptagate scandal.
What lies behind these developments? How does the Zuma presidency exercise its power? Who makes our foreign policy? What goes on in cabinet meetings? What is the state of play in the Alliance – is the SACP really more powerful than before? And, as the landscape shifts, what are the opposition’s prospects? In The Zuma Years, Richard Calland attempts to answer these questions, and more, by holding up a mirror to the new establishment; by exploring how people such as Malema, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng and DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko have risen so fast; by examining key drivers of transformation in South Africa, such as the professions and the universities; and by training a spotlight on the toxic mix of money and politics.
The Zuma Years is a fly-on-the-wall, insider’s approach to the people who control the power that affects us all. It takes you along the corridors of government and corporate power, mixing solid research with vivid anecdote and interviews with key players. The result is an accessible yet authoritative account of who runs South Africa, and how, today.