Zuma blossoming... as an orchid

2012-09-20 22:22
The South African Orchid Council names an orchid in honour of President Jacob Zuma at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. (GCIS)

The South African Orchid Council names an orchid in honour of President Jacob Zuma at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. (GCIS)

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Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma was quite chuffed on Thursday about having an orchid named after him.

The honour was bestowed by the Rustenburg Orchid Society (ROS) to name an orchid after him.

"As you know, I grew up where there are a lot of flowers," Zuma told reporters in Pretoria.

"As a herdboy would walk around collecting flowers; many of them, I did not know their names. Thank you very much for the honour."

The flower was named Phalaenopsis Jacob Zuma.

This came ahead of the 15th SA Orchid Council national conference and show which will be hosted in Rustenburg later this month.

President of the ROS Tinus Oberholzer presented the flower to Zuma at the Union Buildings on Thursday.

"There are very few people in South Africa with orchids named after them."

Former president Nelson Mandela had an orchid named after him but that was done in Singapore, he said.

"We thought that in celebration of the forthcoming orchid show, we would honour the current president [Jacob Zuma] by naming the orchid after him."

Zuma was given options to choose from four differently coloured Phalaenopsis-type orchids.

"He chose the one with the bright yellow colouring. The colour may change depending on the light intensity in a building," said Oberholzer.

"He preferred this [particular orchid] because he said it reminds him of butterflies during his childhood days."

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  johannesburg  |  flowers

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