South Africa


Duduzane Zuma taps wealthy Indian benefactors as his presidential campaign steps up 

Duduzane Zuma (pictured) has hit the campaign trail with wealthy Indian people and communities in mind, despite criticism he’s received for allegedly being complicit in inciting the July riots in KwaZulu-Natal and his business dealings with the Guptas. (Photo: Deaan Vivier)

Jacob Zuma’s heir apparent is working wealthy Indian areas for funding, but he faces tough questions about his role in the July riots and looting. 

A month after he and his twin sister Duduzile (Dudu) Zuma-Sambudla were criticised for allegedly inciting violence on social media, which amplified the July riots and looting, Duduzane Zuma has hit the campaign trail among nervous but wealthy Indian communities to raise funds and assist with hampers for his door-to-door work.  

In Laudium, the formerly Indian area outside Pretoria which is fabulously wealthy, he met with local business people to discuss what had happened in July and raise funds for his campaign. Zuma has been campaigning hard in KwaZulu-Natal using the ANC method of door-to-door visits to talk and hand out food hampers.  He is on the stumps most weekends now, and his social videos attract high viewer numbers.  

Several community leaders in Laudium said Zuma had asked for help funding hampers for a food drive, but his host, Ashraf Peera, denies this:  “It was not a fundraiser or a dinner; it was about five people that needed to ventilate some issues during the day over a cup of tea, about our concerns about the unrest.” 

Four separate and independent sources told Daily Maverick that the purpose of the meeting was to raise funds. Zuma’s efforts are said to have been less successful among business people in Lenasia and in Verulam, KwaZulu-Natal, where activists put the kibosh on plans to host him, although a local pastor gave him a platform in Verulam. 

Peera is a long-standing local ANC member and leader as well as a community policing forum leader. “He is a friend of mine. I really do not need to justify my friendship with Duduzani (his name is spelt differently in different places). Some Laudium residents have welcomed positive engagements with him as there hasn’t been such for a long time because Indian communities countrywide, as a minority, feel they have been ignored and neglected by the political status quo,” he said.  

But two other community members who would not be named said that the area’s ‘big families’ (wealthiest) had turned down the invitation to meet Zuma as he is regarded as having egged on the July violence, which drove a schism between Durban’s African and Indian community groups, especially in Phoenix and other parts of the port city. In addition, he is a business associate of the Gupta family who was at the heart of state capture and corruption of at least three major state-owned companies, according to evidence led before the Commission of Inquiry into state capture.   

“I am not aware of this initiative (the meeting) has made any residents of Laudium unhappy, besides for the one or two people that simply may be looking for attention or were not part of this engagement and felt left out,” said Peera. Asked if he was not concerned by Zuma’s proximity to the state capture story, he said: “Secondly matters of state capture and other topical issues around him have been raised and responded to legally… it is not my place to comment on state capture or anything else political that may misconstrue facts or any unnecessary spreading of false information or misunderstandings.”

Zuma’s charm offensive in Laudium included an interview on Glow-TV, a very successful community television station. In the interview with anchor Devan Naicker, Zuma positions himself as a bridge between Indian and Black communities after the July riots which took African-Indian relations to a knife-edge. He said that spatial apartheid had not reshaped how people live and that “People live together, but there are still racial divides. Poverty does not only have a black face, but it has an Indian face, and a coloured face too,” he told Naicker saying that his Instagram video where he said looters should “loot responsibly” had been taken out of context. “I have always had relations with groupings not from my own race group,” he said, saying that he was persuading these groupings, which he identified as Indians, Whites, Afrikaans (speakers), Greeks, and Portuguese ensure that business did not forget the “unemployed, voiceless black majority”. 

“I am actively trying to get the minorities back on board. They feel like the current political landscape has ignored them. And I’m saying, ‘Guys, that’s not the case, and I’m here. Let’s move this thing forward.’”  

Indian communities across South Africa are skittish after the July violence and rioting and the deaths of 36 people, in what morgue employees confirmed to the Daily Maverick they believe was a massacre. In the days of and following the July violence, race relations reached a fever pitch as the hashtag #PhoenixMassacre trended on social media.  

Now Zuma has inserted himself into that tinderbox as a peace-maker. This video in Verulam shows how.

In this article by Chris Makhaye and Nce Mkhize for the Daily Maverick, Nkosentsha Shezi of RET Champions, an organisation of the ANC RET faction, said it would put up either Zuma or suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule as its candidate for the ANC elective conference in 2022. But he has a long road to walk as a meeting in Newlands East in Durban where he hoped to be elected and so begin his journey to the ANC Presidency was disrupted, with members questioning how he had been parachuted in. Sources in the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal have told the Daily Maverick he is unlikely to make it to the top of the party ballot in 2022 and said he would face hurdles even at the branch level. Still, Zuma is on the campaign trail most weekends now, hoping to ensure that his dad was not the last President Zuma.

The fundraising drive suggests that Zuma is struggling to repatriate his share of the profits made from the Gupta empire (because a lot of it has been frozen by international authorities) but it could also be a way to access his funds, said a civil society leader in Lenasia. DM


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All Comments 44

  • The only way for the rot to continue and keep a better part of the ANC out of jail and those in jail to be given the Shaik passport is to parachute this oxygen thief into the presidency. The ANC politicians comes with a price tag (chicken, braai meat booze electric fence nail bar trip to Dubai and Range Rover ) and the likes of the Guptas must be servicing the cash counting machine.

    • Oxygen thief he may be, but I’m afraid he’s also a real thief. A very, very, very successful one at that. Door-to-door visits and food hampers…… he wouldn’t dream of trying it without food hampers for the very voting fodder he’s impoverished.

      Such a tragedy

      • Ger Pig, you nailed it. Can someone please explain how this guy can drift between Dubai and SA without any problems. Surely there are so many incidents that the PP, NPA, Hawks, SARS etc., could issue an arrest warrant. I’m presuming that the buying of votes is completely acceptable in SA.

  • Indian families have been very good to the Zumas – think of the Guptas, the Shaiks, Vivian Reddy and Jagdish Parekh. The son is drinking from the same well as his father.

    • Yes indeed, but the RICH Indians that know how to ‘milk the cow’ for their own personal, self-enrichment and aggrandisement purposes. Not the normal, hard working Indian like the rest of us common people of South Africa.

  • It reeks of a visit from a crime boss who has the potential to ruin you. Al Capone coming to tea would mean only one thing. Why isn’t this man.. the erstwhile Gupta enabler.. in jail yet?

  • This could only happen in Africa! This guy is a multi millionaire built on Gupta Links and suddenly thinks he is a Presidential candidate. Why are we cursed with unthinkable “events”?

  • Hard to get your Bitcoin back into SA Rands without exposing yourself!
    I have long suspected that Afro/Indian collusion is driving the tender opportunities here. And it’s been done so openly! Even having exposed the billions robbed from our fiscus the thieving continues. Until we openly show who is providing financial support for the political parties, the backhanders, graft and incentives will continue in the dark and the naive but greedy politician will continue to be easily persuaded by the wily opportunist – both only interested in doing what works for them and not the people of SA let alone the tax payer who is picking up the tab.

    • Exactly the same as in Zimbabwe, but just that they aren’t family members, only political ‘friends’.
      I’m talking about the erstwhile Thief-in-Chief Mugabe, followed (in exactly the same footsteps) by Mnangagwa!
      The country’s ruination caused by Mugabe with the final nails in the coffin supplied by Mnangagwa.

      • Democracy and Capitalism are dirty words in Black Africa. And they have the cheek to criticize Colonialism – the very thing that created the opportunity for them to Plunder! Ironic really.

  • “A month after he and his twin sister Duduzile (Dudu) Zuma-Sambudla were criticised for allegedly inciting violence on social media, which amplified the July riots and looting, … ” and that is exactly where the problem lies. They should both have been locked away by now. What is it with these people that they seem to ‘get away’ with any degree of criminality?

  • The rich Indians should be afraid that in supporting the young kleptomaniac they will be viewed in the same light as those crooked Indians hiding from justice in the middle east.

    They would be correct to fear this.

    Duduzane and his lawyers will be assasinated by his criminal buddies long before his name appears on a national ballot. That’s the way things go every few years in organised crime.

  • Spotted skunks perform a spread-eagled handstand before they spray you, earning the nickname “the acrobats of the skunk world.”
    So if you see a skunk doing a handstand… run like hell

  • This young man has more than enough self confidence, some would call it extraordinary arrogance dressed up in humility. I can’t see middle classkIndian people falling for this – it would appear that all his supporters are of the same ilk and decent people will stay well clear of him. He is notable for the company he keeps , and of course his infamous family connections.The other question is, why is he needing to solicit money? Can’t he get his finances out of Dubai- maybe he should take to crowd funding, poor guy, like the ANC!

  • I’m surprised he hasn’t popped into Phoenix with Bheki Cele to do some fundraising there as well? Cele was extremely swift in appointing practically all the detectives in the country to arrest alleged vigilante’s in Phoenix, but far less enthusiastic about investigating the real instigators of the July violence, other than some token scape goats. I wonder why? Buddies?

  • In search of his own personal Gupta – I am sure he is also advising the potential Indian investors on how to move cash to Dubai without being detected and informing them of the magnificient mansions they can acquire as a home once they get exposed and need to flee South Africa.
    He may also, I believe, be promising them much wealth and many tenders tenders and protection from the law, just like his jailed father did for the Guptas’. There will always be a greedy taker, something he is well aware of and banking on, given his personal history with the Guptas’.

  • How can people be so naive? Why are they even entertaining him? Some people cannot see “the forest for the trees”-and that’s for a logical reason…they have been stolen! Wake up! People get the Government they deserve.
    It is time for delivery and competent leaders and not for desperate ex-president’s off-spring.

  • Wasn’t this the same chop who lost control of his Porsche in a rainstorm and then slammed into a stationary taxi, killing one person? Last I heard of that story he was to be charged with manslaughter and reckless driving but then the media seemed to just drop the whole thing.

  • Where is the NPA? This imposter is a Gupta lieutenant and master of corruption with his house in Dubai etc. but is now giving out food parcels at no expense to himself. Time for the antics to stop. No political party should be giving anything out. All charity should come from Gift of the Givers or similar organisations. No more paid votes!

  • Sending up a fervent prayer that South African voters are not stupid and gullible enough to be taken for another expensive ride by another ghastly Zuma.

  • Eish, these cups of tea! Orange should suit him well – for heaven’s sake lock this oke up. Surely there is enough evidence by now – either on the Gupta slate or on his role in the insurrection.

  • Interesting that Duduzane Zuma believes that poverty only has black, Indian and coloured faces but no white faces, and according to him, whites do not appear to be one of the minorities in the country.

  • Not only is DZ a benefactor of the rape and plunder of our state coffers, but he had the good conscience to instruct the rioters to ” loot responsibly”. ( reviewed that clip on whether there was anyway to misconstrue that comment and there is no merit to his claim). Now, in an incompetent local government near you, we could possibly have this poor example of homo sapiens…?
    The strategy – get money from the people, so you can drop food parcels to the poor, so they can vote for you. Please let common sense prevail – donate all the money you’re contemplating on giving to a NPO with backbone and integrity – like gift of the givers. That way you’re doing actual good work.

  • So many things have happened in SA that seemed impossible, just hope we have grown up enough this time around. Heard a comment somewhere, “all countries have corruption, the difference in SA is how blatant it is”. The arrogance is insane.

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