Zuma defends friendship with Guptas

2013-06-20 08:41

Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma has defended his relationship with the Gupta family, saying South Africans can befriend whoever they want, Eyewitness News reported on Thursday.

During question time in the National Assembly on Wednesday, Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko asked Zuma why the Gupta family had direct contact with members of his Cabinet.

Zuma reportedly responded by saying any member of the public was free to contact any member of his Cabinet or the public service.

His administration promoted open and accessible government.

"It is because any member of the public within South Africa and beyond our borders is free to contact any members of my Cabinet, the executive, or the public service directly."

Independent Democrats MP Joe Mcgluwa reportedly asked Zuma: "Are you, Mr President, willing to cut your ties with the Gupta family?"

Zuma responded that everyone had the right to make friends.

However, that did not mean endorsing wrongdoing.

"We are not in the state that burns people because they are friends with others," Zuma was quoted saying.

"But we are also in the state where if there are specific issues that have affected either the interests of government or whatever, people will come back and say these are facts that say this thing has happened and therefore this thing is not good."

  • Elizabeth Emmaritha du Preez - 2013-06-20 08:44

    He says: "His administration promoted open and accessible government." hahahahahahahahahaha

      Sipho Mathabula - 2013-06-20 08:54

      Tell me who is buying this crap, is anyone even in the ANC believing what he says?

      Aswatas - 2013-06-20 08:57

      Zuma - Bad to the bone...corrupt....corrupt....corrupt....corrupt....

      Maartins Siphiso - 2013-06-20 09:00

      It's a generally corrupt friendship.

      mapepaki - 2013-06-20 09:02

      Where does bribery and corruption end and friendship begin, or is it a corrupt friendship?

      Janti Cloete - 2013-06-20 09:05

      And yet they lobbied for the secrecy bill.....

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:06

      Great news Mr President. Can you please give me the Gupta's private numbers, and Shabir's, and Mac's, and oh what the hell - maybe Juju's as well - I want to make new friends too. What - I need to upgrade my modest little house that is the culmination of my hard work over many years. Can you maybe also give me tel. numbers of the Ministers of Security and Public Works as well please. Thanks very much. Oh - and lastly, my rates and taxes are very high on my propery too - do you have any friends in Jhb City Council that want to be friends with me too? Preferably if they life/deal with Saxonwold properties. Flip - I almost forgot - I want friends at Scamall too - is Ali Baba looking for a friend?

      Scouter Four-One - 2013-06-20 09:35

      Friendship is one thing, whether it is appropriate is another.....

      Buzzbar - 2013-06-20 09:38

      @Leonard, he may be no1 in govt but in reality, he's a no2.

      Rebel - 2013-06-20 09:39

      Did Zuma make this press release while signing the Secrecy bill?

      Chrono Man - 2013-06-20 10:23

      Mr President, sorry to have to point this out to you: there are friendships that you are simply not allowed to have when you assume high office. Period. It comes with the responsibility of being the president. Why is it logical to me but not to you?

      Charlotte-Francisque Roux - 2013-06-20 10:26

      Anthony Michael, Thank you for today's entertainment. The DA/DA-supporters do know what is going on in the country - I have not laughed so much in a long time... Compared to what Anthony Michael? The ANC/ANC-supporters? Anthony Michael - you and your type alike is the reason nobody in their right mind wants to invest in SA. SA's foreign direct investment fell by more than 70% in less than two and a half year, under Zuma, yet he thinks there is NOOOOOOOOTHING wrong. Hitler did exactly the same - the Allies were a few streets away from his bunker and still denied there was any invasion. You present a brand of idiocy that is worst there is: The ones that do not know that they do not know. So let me conclude with ANC stuck gramaphone, apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid/apartheid...

      Clinton Hiepner - 2013-06-20 10:31

      Lest be real - Jacob Zuma has become the "George Bush" of South African presidents. He is more worried about "personal friendships" and greed towards money that he really does not care how it affects our people or economy for that matter. The demise of our economy is a direct result of his leadership and the image he portrays in supporting corruption and also ensuring his personal interest and that of his friends gets looked after first. He forgot about his promises and then when he sees unrest he promises even more radical action and implementations that only helps to fuel more social unrest and dents investors confidence. Zuma has been revealed, just like Bush to be a puppet to big corporations, corrupt African states and rich personal friends. He has become president for one thing only. Not to change and bring prosperity to South Africa and the poor - but rather in it for the money. The big fat salary check, the shady tenderised dealings behind closed doors, nice diamonds and minerals, the kick backs he receives from personal friends and the huge perks a president gets for being well NO1. In 10 years time todays youth will look back and see the legacy he has left behind, but Zuma don't care much about what people think about him. For him the only thing that speaks truth is money even if it means the truth is tainted with blood, lies and corrupt dealings.

      Gideon Van Der Walt - 2013-06-20 10:32

      What a joke! Such an immature answer. "Why did you do that, because I wanted to". JMSP!

      Gieljam Gomtor - 2013-06-20 11:31

      Hes only human and only the president for a short time so If you have friends who shower you with all sorts of presents and gifts why not?

      Timmy Thomas - 2013-06-20 11:37

      Jacob Zuma, you are corrupt. The country will soon fall on its knees unless there is a drastic change in your administration. You are so unclean I get embarassed to be called a black South African at the moment. But canĀ“t you see all the problems we are faced with baba?

      Ritz40 - 2013-06-20 11:40

      Anthony JZc**ksucker Michael

      Tgif Wtfaw - 2013-06-20 12:21

      We've heard these comments before, remember " He's my Friend Finnish and Klaar" ?

      Twolips - 2013-06-20 15:51

      @alicialouise Zuma only has the first two types of friends, so did Juju, and looks where that's got him. Zuma has not yet matured to the level where you and I are.

      Ann Murray - 2013-06-20 15:53

      In my opinion they are "fair weather friends" they do not back one-another up if there is the hint of a crisis. He is totally between a rock and a hard place, if you ask me ... if he ends the friendship, a whole lot of lolly will drift out of the party!

      Freddie Miller - 2013-06-20 16:39

      What a crock... this relationship is corrupt and rotten to the core.

      Jon Jones - 2013-06-20 16:52

      Gieljam should it not be a case of 'friends who present you with all sorts of showers' in this case ?

      Mattewis Kat - 2013-06-21 06:54

      They say you're known by the company you keep! In this case though, I'm not sure which way round is worse! In Afrikaans the most appropriate is just to say "soort soek soort"!

  • Rob Martin - 2013-06-20 08:47

    As long as he lines his pocket.

      Erich Goosen - 2013-06-20 09:36

      South Africans can befriend whoever they want. Difference is, Mr President, you are not South Africa. It is expected from you as South Africa's No. 1 to chose your friends wisely. In this case you got involved in a friendship with shady characters who compromised your ability to take decisions that will benefit South Africa, If ever you have demonstrated your inability to lead this country, you have done it with these few words.

      Ryan Viljoen - 2013-06-20 10:08

      "But we are also in the state where if there are specific issues that have affected either the interests of government or whatever, people will come back and say these are facts that say this thing has happened and therefore this thing is not good." I need a translation or interpretation here please. I cannot make sense of this paragraph whatsoever. And this is the international spokesperson of our country???

      tracykruger007 - 2013-06-20 13:59

      But the thing is are we as the General Public allowed to land our planes at Waterkloof Air Base ? It's so much nearer my home in Pretoria ! So why can't we all use it !

  • Peter Ndamase - 2013-06-20 08:49

    The hipocricy demonstrated by DA, Zille had lunch with the guptas before donation and she went into their house. Politicians should just refrain from dodgy businesspeople...period!

      Lucky Luke - 2013-06-20 08:54

      peter, you can make decisions and mistakes but then you can also decide to change or correct these, if you believe they were wrong, that's the difference! do you believe that the zupta marriage has no influence either way, really believe?

      Sipho Mathabula - 2013-06-20 08:55

      Correct Peter but the Politicians are the dodgy business people.

      Peter Ndamase - 2013-06-20 08:58

      @lucky...agreed, but you do know that businesspeople do not just donate to political parties for charity. There is another ZIPTA relationship brewing.

      Maartins Siphiso - 2013-06-20 09:02

      @Peter Ndamase - BBBBIIIGGGG difference between having lunch & a generally corrupt relationship.

      Azande Futhi - 2013-06-20 09:04

      @Peter, I like the Zipta relationship part. hahahahaa. Politicians are all liars.

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:21

      @Maartins - that a 'generally' or a 'genuinely'?

      Mavhungu Vincent - 2013-06-20 09:35

      @Martins do you think Gupta just donated some money to DA for nothing? as for zuma you cant pinpoint any corrupt doing with gupta but you will find out they have been some donations to ANC just like what happen to DA.

      luckyluke - 2013-06-20 09:48

      peter you may be right, let's wait and see but i believe it won't happen.

      Rocky Bell - 2013-06-20 16:56

      Holy Mackeral Peter. One would expect somebody commenting on the forums to have sufficient background, information or has done his research on a subject, beforemaking a COMPLETE fool of himself. DO YOU KNOW THE REAL STORY BEHIND THE SO CALLED GUPTA DONATION TO THE DA. Next time make sure of your facts (good place to start is Google) otherwise join the SUN newspaper's colums.

      Logic - 2013-06-21 00:11

      there tends to be a difference between donations and being bought

  • Jacqui Daane Van Rensburg - 2013-06-20 08:52

    Of course everyone is entitled to choose their own friends. Some of us are just very pickey who we give our friendship to.

      Hertzel Brodovcky - 2013-06-20 08:57

      ..Selebi also said "...................".........

      Cathy De Jongh - 2013-06-20 08:59

      Wonder if he realises that he's the president of a country and not a socialite flitting from one jol to another.

      PB - 2013-06-20 09:20

      Hertzel, "he is my friend, finish and klaar" was the first thing that came to my mind as well!

  • Richard Scully - 2013-06-20 08:52

    Yis baas Gupta...

      Steve Ritchie - 2013-06-20 10:19

      Zoomie is a paid and kept politician by those with the BIG money.

  • Mzomhle Molose - 2013-06-20 08:53

    Lindiwe Mazibuko A.K.A Aunt Tom.

      Azande Futhi - 2013-06-20 09:04

      no, aunt Ruby hahahahahaha

      JMaree - 2013-06-20 09:36

      You seem to be the same people that would necklace someone because they differ in opinion, race, tribe, culture... You both are kind of sick, for your sake, i hope you are never on the receiving end.

      Dee Bone - 2013-06-20 09:56

      @Molose. Is that your best defence for the crook? Calling an as yet 'good' woman names? Grade 4 education you?

      Sipho Mathabula - 2013-06-20 11:23

      Mzomhle and Azande. Tula wena, didimala, warassa. Empty vessels make the most noise, like your and Zuma's heads. What has Lindiwe got to do with this story? Please explain. As soon as we highlight your god's (Zuma's)short comings you attack a female of the opposition that seems to be the defense of a weak and insecure person that can't argue rationally, at least she saw the light and left the sinking ship, as for you rats you will sink with the SS ANC and then wake up one day and wonder why we are scratching round in the bushes for grass seeds to eat, because No.1 and all involved have completely destroyed this country. What then? Are you going to beg for a job from Bob Mugabe?

      Jo Lekkading - 2013-06-20 12:04

      Actually JMaree, perhaps it would be best if Mzomhle was on the receiving end ....

      Charmaine Paterson - 2013-06-20 18:27

      Strong, intelligent women are just too much for men with low self-esteem and IQ's.

  • Mikesh Bhaskar - 2013-06-20 08:54

    Lies! Since when does the cabinet have an open door policy?

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:14

      Maybe if Spin Doctor Mac told us this, we would believe it. Oh wait - Not! His lips moved.

      Mikesh Bhaskar - 2013-06-20 10:12

      He-he. The only mac I believe in is sold by Mcdonalds.

      Sipho Mathabula - 2013-06-20 11:14

      The back door is always open for corruption/bribes !!!

  • MSGRules - 2013-06-20 08:54

    What a joke. This guy is killing the country. If you are "friends" with people and a cloud hangs over them or you then you distance yourself. But the stupidity and arrogance is immense with the cANCer. And he is starting with land "grab" bull just before elections. The ANC wants racial tension so they can thrive as they did in the "struggle". They need to go the killing South Africa.

  • Ogie Ndhlovu Takers - 2013-06-20 08:54

    If the friendship compromises his intergrity and presidency then it needs to be cut off...

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:16

      and the friendly spear too?

  • Khumo Tsineng - 2013-06-20 08:56

    MrZ is rite no1 would choose friends for me or you, right or wrong. or do they want to befriend the Guptas??

  • Tim Norris - 2013-06-20 08:57

    Friendship is one thing, but the relationship he has with the Guptas goes far beyond the bounds of propriety

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:07

      Whoopa Shabir Style

  • mapepaki - 2013-06-20 09:00

    Where does bribery and corruption end and friendship begin, or is it a corrupt friendship?

  • Gift Mogiftana - 2013-06-20 09:01

    And to think he's gonna be president again for another 5 years..Lord deliver us from this idiot!!

      Cathy De Jongh - 2013-06-20 09:57

      The lord won't but the people of SA definitely can.

  • Annie Wan - 2013-06-20 09:02

    comic character old Jacob - if you want to be friends with a rich coolie its your prob - he's going to stick a knife in your back, but dont put the whole country at risk the way you did - A president you are not, but a puppet on a string. And youve got the wives on your back too, what a life LOL, with a whole country and your own people making fun of you

      Tersia Louw - 2013-06-20 10:21

      Annie is a racist troll; ignore her.

      Jon Jones - 2013-06-20 16:59

      Actually this is almost funny. The word 'c**!ie" is actually of Chinese origin. And was first used by the colonials to refer to the Chinese in a derogatory way. 'Annie' Wan is Chinese it seems. Was she refering to her own nation by any chance ?. ha ha

  • CraigJoseph - 2013-06-20 09:02

    Birds of a feather...

      Alan Gernet - 2013-06-20 09:16


  • Wa Tswera - 2013-06-20 09:02

    And we call that Mr President? Oh my God this country is in big trouble.Two heads has no clue to what this country might become.

  • Soraya Asmal - 2013-06-20 09:04

    Does anybody even expect any good to come from zuma

  • Vho Rapea - 2013-06-20 09:04

    But wait...didn't the premier of the western cape and leader of the DA have dinner with the guptas before receiving a donation? Its a case of the pot calling the kettle black, cheap politicking

      Michael Tetley - 2013-06-20 09:29

      But when they realized that it was a mistake they returned the donation and cut off ties with the Guptas, that's he difference you muppet!

      MJS1234 - 2013-06-20 10:56

      Whilst I agree with you to some extent, the difference is that there was no political favours given in return. The DA, or any political party, should insure its funding is from a credible source.

      Dee Bone - 2013-06-20 18:21

      @ Pngwenya. I am not a DA supporter but I don't think they'd be stupid enough to still be involved with the Guptas. It'll remove all their credibility

  • Pieter Ver - 2013-06-20 09:05

    The arrogance of this fool is beyond comprehension. Went into hiding when the heat was on until someone thought out some excuses on his behalf - now he comes out guns blazing with this arrogance! What idiot will vote for him unless being paid off?

  • Paul Du Plessis - 2013-06-20 09:05

    Reminds one of the sentiments of a former Police Chief when questioned about his relationship with Agliotti. Maybe Zuma should now just add the words "finish and klaar".

  • Payricia Bull - 2013-06-20 09:06

    And ye shall be judged by the company that ye keep ! ....... (which is why Zuma is so carefully selecting the judges who will be presiding over his inevitable crimes against the nation)

  • Azande Futhi - 2013-06-20 09:06

    Zuma cannot differentiate between talking to high school kids and literate adults. I'm not surprised, he only know lower primary.

      Al Loots - 2013-06-20 09:14

      Precisely. His demeanor is blatantly insulting (unless he is actually stupid). This arrogant clown can go jump in a lake of fire.

  • merkwaardig - 2013-06-20 09:07

    yes, you have the right to choose your friends, but as salaried president we require circumspection and responsibility.

  • Francoise Van Rheede - 2013-06-20 09:09

    What an ass

      Robbie Crouch - 2013-06-20 11:08

      The best comment of the day!

  • MikeStevens - 2013-06-20 09:09

    Sure MR Zuma, SOUTH AFRICANS can be friends with whoever they want. You however are not a South African, you're a corrupt parasite who just happens to share the same land as the rest of us.

  • Dave Watson - 2013-06-20 09:12

    Can anybody actually work out what Zuma was actually saying and secondly, who is believing this claptrap?

  • Wim Kotze - 2013-06-20 09:12

    Let me think about my friends. We have at least some common interests.We phone one another on our birthdays, we visit one another in our houses, we share pics of our children. We certainly attend one another's weddings, unless it is a very intimate private affair. If Zuma did not attend this lavish wedding, I must doubt whether the Zumas and Guptas are friends, like we ordinary plebs understand the term. I wonder what common interest Mr Zuma and whichever Gupta brother have. So again if I think back, who do I deal with a lot and know well, that I don't necessarily invite to weddings. Ah..that's it, people with whom I work or do personal business with. This is a business alliance, not a friendship. I hope some journalist will have the guts to ask Zuma when is the birthday or favourate food of ONE Gupta brother. If it is indeed a business alliance that the South African public has the right to know what the nature of this alliance is.The president of the country cannot have a murky business alliance with a main foreign benefactor of government contracts, that is not declared. As the Selebi case has shown, when there's smoke, there is probably fire.

  • Denise Oosthuizen Wilshire - 2013-06-20 09:13

    And see where that friendship got you. You were used Mr. Pres. You let them act like they owned the country. You also put us out there in the world as a country without any sovereign integrity. Obviously you do not understand that a president of a country is supposed to be wise and circumspect. A King can do as he pleases, but a president is there to serve his people. Get it? S E R V E as in servant.

      Tersia Louw - 2013-06-20 10:23

      That friendship is an embarrassment to the citizens of South Africa, Mr Zuma; remember us? The electorate?

  • David Madisha - 2013-06-20 09:15

    Guptas again on the topic???

  • Jomo Jeremy Ubissie - 2013-06-20 09:17

    Well said Mr Zuma! But wrong doing has been there with you and Guptas and you have legible records when it comes to that friendships which comprises of wrong doing. Who would forget ur relationship with Shaik and associates.

  • Truth.nnete - 2013-06-20 09:17

    Zuma was supposed to be asked if he acknowledge that Gupta family are using his name to get favours wrongfully.And when he agrees he was supposed to be asked why he never sued them for defamation to show his bereavement unless he doesnt want to taint his relationship with them.

  • Jaco van Niekerk - 2013-06-20 09:18

    This is a very convenient response from the President. Through this he indicates his friendship ties with criminals and corrupt people globally, thus making SA a shelter a refuge for such persons.

  • Al Loots - 2013-06-20 09:18

    The village idiot speaks. By mumbling incoherent sentences he believes he is woeing people. He's wrong. We stand in wonderment at his abject stupidity and blatant insulting, arrogant demeanor.

  • Moss Kop - 2013-06-20 09:20

    He have to defend the friendship. He don't have a choice. Maybe the Guptas have something against him.

  • foxiloxi - 2013-06-20 09:22

    Shabir Shaik, Jackie SElebi anybody?!?!?! Please everybody go out and vote these people out now before there is nothing left!!!

  • Monty Erasmus - 2013-06-20 09:23

    Where do I get the Cabinet Ministers contact details? Would love to invite a few over for a chat, seeing that they are "open and accessible" to all of us.

  • Jaco Jansen - 2013-06-20 09:23

    Yes and not to mention taking fat kickbacks in the process and letting your buddies use our military air-force base as their private landing strip...For a democratically elected president JZ sure has some interesting(shady) friends...

  • Sbusiso Ngidi - 2013-06-20 09:24

    yekani upresident coz uyaniphendula nihluleke what more you want.

  • Michael Hogg - 2013-06-20 09:28

    No Zuma. It is not okay when those friendships lead to our national security being compromised. You seem to have a number of generally corrupt relationships with suspect individuals. A president should distance him or herself from such people but you seem to attract them like flies to a dung pile.

  • Eugene Fourie - 2013-06-20 09:28

    "Zuma reportedly responded by saying any member of the public was free to contact any member of his Cabinet or the public service." What he was supposed to say was "Any member of the public,worth billions of dollars, can contact any member of his Cabinet directly!!" His stupidity knows no bounds...

  • Lynn Hattingh - 2013-06-20 09:29

    Ok Mr President give us the numbers as well so that we can also contact those people in cabinet! Oh and while you are about it let us know if they will answer their phones or be like all the other public servants and ignore them?

  • Mavhungu Vincent - 2013-06-20 09:30

    its funny any one who mentioned the dinner between Zille and Gupta got thumb down. Why people are doing that? Both Zuma and Zille are agents of Gupta.

      Michael Wilson - 2013-06-20 09:59

      That is a highly simplistic way of looking at it. If you are saying that the relationship here is exactly comparable then i would say that you are very wrong.

  • Christopher Laurenz - 2013-06-20 09:31

    'Zuma reportedly responded by saying any member of the public was free to contact any member of his Cabinet or the public service.' Thats great, can you make public your cellphone numbers? I need to discuss a few things with all of you.

  • Mr Badbones - 2013-06-20 09:31

    As long as they have LOTS of money to give me ..... he he he

  • Miguel Capelo - 2013-06-20 09:33

    "People deserve the government they get, and they deserve to get it good and hard." H.L. Mencken

  • Denelene Sederstroom - 2013-06-20 09:34

    Mazibuko's what sily question is that.pls dont go to pariament to play jingle.articulate isues afecting the people on the ground pls.

  • Mavhungu Vincent - 2013-06-20 09:36

    its funny any one who mentioned the dinner between Zille and Gupta got thumb down. Why people are doing that? Both Zuma and Zille are agents of Gupta.

  • Don Mug - 2013-06-20 09:37


  • Moses Mhlongo - 2013-06-20 09:37

    The Government of thieves and looters. Corrupt and have no shame. Gupta / Zuma...all the same.

  • Rene Kleyn - 2013-06-20 09:38

    Haha! Another "finish en klaar" friend!