Bosasa Jacob Zuma ANgelo AGrizzi

A file photo of former South African President Jacob Zuma. Photo: ZUMA Press / RealTime Images

Jacob Zuma accused of launching political party behind ANC’s back

A man with multiple wives may be looking to extend his polygamous attitude towards politics. Jacob Zuma is rumoured to have started the African Transformation Movement.

Bosasa Jacob Zuma ANgelo AGrizzi

A file photo of former South African President Jacob Zuma. Photo: ZUMA Press / RealTime Images

Well, we promised you plenty of political drama during election year, and it seems we’re starting 2019 with a bombshell. A report in the Rapport publication has accused Jacob Zuma of helping to create the African Transformation Party (ATM) back in June.

Is Jacob Zuma planning for life after the ANC?

The ATM basked in the limelight last week when Jimmy Manyi announced he was defecting from the ANC to join the party as their chief of policy and strategy. But where does Zuma fit into this?

Well, it’s believed he was part of its inception almost seven months ago. The report claims that JZ “and some of his loyalists” met up at the Umhlanga Rocks Hotel in Durban and agreed to form a party that could challenge the ANC, based on a mandate of radical economic transformation.

What the African Transformation Movement stand for

They aren’t happy with the ruling party’s attitude towards implementing social change, but their motivations apparently go beyond political policy: With Cyril Ramaphosa delivering on some promises to hold state capture architects to account, Zuma was allegedly keen to find himself a new political home.

Vuyolwethu Zungula is the official leader of the ATM, and he has a long history of fierce loyalty towards the former president. If Zuma is flirting with another political party, the interest is certainly reciprocated.

This somewhat flies in the face of what we’ve seen from Msholozi recently, however. Despite his differences with Ramaphosa, he’s been at the forefront of early election campaigning for the ANC, and has been imploring citizens to vote for the party when South Africans go to the polls.

Jacob Zuma’s link to the Mazibuye African Congress

This is not the first time Zuma has been accused of looking for a new party to join, either. Around the same time he’s suspected of helping to launch the ATM, uBaba was also linked to the Mazibuye African Congress (MAC).

The newly-established movement also run on the promise of advanced transformation and are very much moulded in Zuma’s image. Reggie Ngcobo is the president of the MAC, who are preparing to officially launch their campaign ahead of the 2019 elections. He stated that his party would be using JZ as their “political inspiration”.