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What should Zuma do on Thursday? Ferial Haffajee and Justice Malala make their SONA predictions at Times Talks

Justice Malala, Ferial Haffajee and Ray Hartley
Ragged GloryWhat If There Were No Whites In South Africa?We Have Now Begun Our Descent

President Jacob Zuma’s imminent State of the Nation Address was the focus of a Times Talks event with Ray Hartley, Ferial Haffajee and Justice Malala at Kingsmead College in Joburg last night.

Rand Daily Mail editor Hartley, who moderated the discussion, posed the question: “What should Zuma do on Thursday?”

Malala, political commentator and author of We Have Now Begun Our Descent: How To Stop South Africa Losing Its Way, said Zuma will need to tread carefully.

“I think the first thing he must do is show that he loves the ANC,” Malala said. “He has been a liability, a huge one, for the ANC, we’ve all said that before.

“I think he should step down. Will he step down? I don’t think he believes his work here is done. But he has surprised before …”

Justice Malala, Ferial Haffajee and Ray Hartley

Haffajee, City Press editor and author of What If There Were No Whites In South Africa?, said like last year she believes the event may be disrupted.

“Thursday is going to be the Finance Minister’s State of the Nation. I think a lot of work has gone into what they call a stabilisation package, that I think will be at the centre of the State of the Nation address.

“Julius Malema seems pretty intent on bringing up the firing of Nene, as he said at his press conference, and I think everything is pointing in the direction of them doing exactly what they did last year.

“The police are bringing in the Hawks, the crimes against the state unit, and public order police officers are being shipped in or flown in for the State of the Nation Address, so perhaps it’s going to be a repeat of last year with even more strongarm tactics. As a South African I pray not.”

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Jennifer Malec (@projectjennifer) tweeted live from the event:

Times Talks is a series of in-depth conversations around big ideas. Keep an eye on the Sunday Times and Books LIVE for future events.

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Photos: Raymond Preston


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