Chess an educational tool - Zuma

2012-03-23 16:30

Pretoria - Chess programmes should be encouraged among young people as the game could help them in their schoolwork, President Jacob Zuma said on Friday.

He was speaking after a brief meeting with former world chess champion and Russian chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov at the president's official residence in Pretoria.

"It is so important for young people, particularly at schools, as an educational tool," said Zuma.

He said Kasparov had briefed him on a few chess programmes to be started in the country and told him he was pleased with the progress made.

"Of course I also love this game... it's very nice," he said.


Kasparov said he would have a base in Johannesburg for his Kasparov Chess Foundation.

"The goal is to establish a base in Johannesburg that will promote these programmes throughout the continent."

He said the programmes were supported by the president and businesses which wanted the game to reach people from different social backgrounds.

"I have very high expectations about our goals set for South Africa and the neighbouring countries," said Kasparov.

South Africa's highest-ranked chess player, Watu Kobese, who also attended the meeting, said Kasparov's partnership with local chess programmes would bring much-needed attention to the game.

"Chess does change a person's mind. We believe it can be one of the tools used to remedy the ills we have in schools, in maths and science especially," he said.

  • clinton.badenhorst - 2012-03-23 16:34

    Zuma probably did not know a pawn from the king. Hahahaha! What the hell does he know about chess? The game was probably over in 2 minutes.

      infijar.ken - 2012-03-23 16:53

      I'm an avid chess player, though at least I admit to being crap!

      Chris - 2012-03-23 17:07

      @Pythagoras, he may not be educated but the man is a master when it comes to strategy. He's managed to get to the top despite the whole world knowing he's a crook. Personally I think he's been disastrous for SA, but never underestimate the man.

      Peter-Peter - 2012-03-23 17:08

      It wont be long before that cover image is labelled 'racist'...what with SA being as volatile as it is, and Zuma playing with the black pieces....oh bad...its only the whites in SA, that it would be labelled 'racist' im surprised they not playing the game on top of his head

      nkulekweni - 2012-03-23 17:33

      Grow up Peter Peter Pan. I am inclined to agree with you Chris. I get annoyed that I have to see his face in papers everyday. But the fact of the matter is that he is a strategist. He seems to end up using people who think will use him. It would be interesting to have a conversation with Shaik and Julius. Uneducated as he is, he has won the battle. Where else in the world do you have someone with such scandals being president of a country? He must have greatly strategised to be crowned the king of thieves amongst so many thieves.

      Peter-Peter - 2012-03-23 17:42

      lol...he's not my 'friend' and i really do not look up to him, if he wasn't president, you would have had a lot more to say to me than that, with what would have come out my mouth

      Smell - 2012-03-23 21:23

      I would not be surprised in the least if Mr. Zuma is a very good chess player. He was denied an education not through lack of intellect, but through lack of opportunity. The Clintons had a history of corruption (the Whitewater affair) and sexual indiscretion (Monica Lewinski). And both of them have been some of the best leaders the West has ever had. Whatever the allegations against him, Mr. Zuma was cleared before the courts. Mr. Zuma, like all human beings, has his faults. But I like him because he reaches out to everyone including the Far Right, whose policies had him incarcerated for many years. He seems like a benevolent man which is the best kind of leader Africa can have. And he had the balls to stop that odious little runaway train, Julius Malema, for now anyway. There were a lot of White citizens who did not appreciate Mr. Mandela's leadership from 1994 to 1998, when he in effect single handedly avoided a civil war in this country. I have a feeling that in a few years time, many critics may well long back to the time of Mr. Zuma's leadership in a wistful fashion. Why are we always so negative in this country? We do have many real problems, but some of the things we label as bad are actually not that shabby at all.

  • phathuchicos - 2012-03-23 16:39

    Does he even care that kids at limpopo can't pplay that game because there are resources...

      Koos - 2012-03-23 17:18

      If you look at the pieces you can see it looks like he was attempting fools-mate. Obviously not going to work since the night was already out and white (not racist) moved first so that means he has attempted a strategy that was already blocked. I can confidently say Zuma can’t play chess either.

      Koos - 2012-03-23 17:20

      Knight – my bad!

      michelle.kirsten - 2012-03-23 22:45

      Kids in my class made their own chess boards and pieces from cardboard. Are you saying the entire limpopo's education system hinges on waiting for resources to fall from the sky?

  • Jason - 2012-03-23 16:40

    Chess is a great teaching tool.

      Dalai - 2012-03-23 17:22

      Chess is a great cheating tool!

      Jason - 2012-03-23 22:20

      You only cheat one person in chess and its not who are playing.

  • Pieter Erasmus - 2012-03-23 16:43

    time for juju to learn the game .... lol

  • Lwads - 2012-03-23 16:44

    Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma.... You're losing it buddy honestly! I bet the pass mark for chess will be 5%, no offence but I literally hate ANC and its current cabinet from the president to whoever is the lowest person in the there!!!

      Tanie - 2012-03-23 16:52

      Those are your issued that's need you to deal with them,buddy.

      Grootrot - 2012-03-23 17:57

      Oom Kriel, from one elderly person to another: Disregarding the fact that Lwads gave a skewed opinion, it still was his and he is allowed to criticise the ANC government and the president. The principle is that you need to have your house clean before you go off at individuals and yours is not. Take a look at your sentence and spot the errors. Lwads, this was a populist address by Zuma to brag to his grandchildren that he met Gary Kasparov. Chess will mean nothing if the children are also not taught proper maths and reading and writing. With Motshekga not even able to sort out the EC's education problems, how do you think this programme is going to be introduced to schools. If it works, guess what, less votes for the ANC, as chess teaches you action and consequence in probably the best way possible.

  • Makua - 2012-03-23 16:49

    ja whatever zooma!! what have you got to say about the kids who still have to go to mud schools in Eastern Cape?

      michelle.kirsten - 2012-03-23 22:41

      OMG I would go to a friggin mud school if it had a teacher who arrived on time and taught me something! Get over it. Some of the world's greatest thinkers went to schools where ages 6 to 16 were all in the same class. They didn't wait for Oprah to buy them whiteboards and laptops. The problem is not what the schools are made of, but what the people make of it. I bet I can make a go of a mud class if I were given a chance to teach instead of prepare endless files and reports on MY progress. I bet my mud class would be a fun place if we didn't have such rubbish curricula. Chess is the best idea ever!!

  • Mark - 2012-03-23 16:50

    Rather have the world think you a fool than open your mouth and confirm it. What is it with this guy?

  • Msika - 2012-03-23 16:54

    I bet Zuma cnt even play the Zuma game

      Heiku - 2012-03-23 17:19

      I love that game. That fat frog in the middle kinda looks like JZ

  • Mark - 2012-03-23 16:54

    Mmmm, chess should really be helpful in science, just can't think right now of how. I hate to be the one to inform you but we need schools, a decent educational standard, teachers who can teach and some discipline in the schools a lot, a huge lot, more than we need chess programmes, wouldn't you think?

  • Ben - 2012-03-23 16:55

    Would surely love a game or two Mr. President.

  • Derk - 2012-03-23 17:05

    Zuma chess not a womans chest

  • Hermann - 2012-03-23 17:06

    And so speaks the great mental superior

      Irene - 2012-03-23 17:57


  • Glyn - 2012-03-23 17:10

    Zuma only plays with the Black pieces! Now he will punt the story that actually he is a genius!

  • Glyn - 2012-03-23 17:12

    Next he will discover Sodoku!

  • Heiku - 2012-03-23 17:17

    Jacob Zuma - The intellectual. That's a new one LOL

  • Heiku - 2012-03-23 17:18

    Chess is unfair. Whites are over powered. Why do whites get to go first?!

      Koos - 2012-03-23 17:25

      Because if the whites don't go first the blacks won't know what to do. They can't rename someting that does not exist.

  • Dalai - 2012-03-23 17:24

    chess the great cheating tool. How about that for effect?

  • snylo - 2012-03-23 17:56

    "Of course I also love this game... it's very nice," he said. A cup of tea is nice... Couldn't he have come up with a better word to describe the game?

      Grootrot - 2012-03-23 18:00

      He at the very last moment added the "s" to nice.

      Koos - 2012-03-23 18:01

      If I was Kasparov I'd be insulted. Intellectually I guess it wasn’t all that nnnnniiiiiiccccceeeeeee.

  • Smell - 2012-03-23 18:17

    Man, there are a lot of ugly racists on these blogs.

      Grootrot - 2012-03-23 18:38

      Yes, it started with the picture of Zuma.

      sally.lewitt - 2012-03-24 04:42

      If you don't like this blog, you know what to do "find another one that suites your bambi taste" wake up. Now the problem would be: one has to be ABLE to READ the rules of chess.. Need I say more....

  • maseratifittipaldi - 2012-03-23 18:58

    I like this, Mr. Zuma. Just mind your Bishop...

  • tobydt - 2012-03-23 19:05

    When Jacob got his pawn to the other side of the board he said: "KING ME!"

      Koos - 2012-03-23 19:12


  • Kyle - 2012-03-23 19:40

    You call this news?

      lvtlali - 2012-03-24 08:08

      He's president, his opinions make news.

  • Gregory - 2012-03-23 21:38

    Start a tax to play the game. Mr Zuma. Chess tax .

  • sariena.robbertse - 2012-03-23 22:54

    Does he know anything about chess or is he confusing it with the body part chest.Now i wonder.....

  • Denny - 2012-03-23 23:01

    In Zuma's version of the game black moves first ;)

  • manyanyaphiri - 2012-03-24 06:59

    Plain public relations at best and embedded journalism at worst.

  • Randomhero6661 - 2012-03-24 07:22

    playing chess against ZUMA, challenge accepted! but i wna play with the black people!

  • Raymond - 2012-03-24 07:52

    Don't worry about the educational tool,worry more about the other tool that is causing a population explosion.

  • Kgosi Letimile Chakanyana Letimile IX - 2013-04-23 08:14

    Good move.

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