Dispatch sticks to its Zuma wife guns

2012-06-20 22:39

Johannesburg - The Daily Dispatch stands by an article it published on Wednesday about the Eastern Cape ANC wanting taxpayers to fund only President Jacob Zuma's first wife.

"We are standing by our story," editor Brendan Boyle said on Wednesday afternoon.

The Times, quoting its sister newspaper the Daily Dispatch, said the provincial African National Congress wanted this to be discussed at the party's policy conference in Midrand next week.

According to the report, the provincial ANC's economic transformation commission said it supported a proposal that only wife number one, Sizakele Khumalo, be supported by taxpayers, and not the other three wives.

Zuma is also married to Bongiwe Ngema, Nompumelelo Ntuli, and Thobeka Mabhija.

However, Boyle said the newspaper would correct the story on Thursday, saying the proposal was made to a commission which was part of the conference, and not by the conference as reported.

'Personal attack'

Earlier on Wednesday, Eastern Cape ANC provincial chair Pumulo Masualle rubbished the article.

"This is a personal attack against the President, not a policy proposal of the ANC in the Eastern Cape," Masualle said in a statement.

He said no such policy proposal was made at the Eastern Cape's provincial general council at the weekend.

"Recommendations from commissions are being put together to be consolidated by the special PEC [provincial executive committee] meeting."

He said "there is nothing suggesting the spousal support as a recommendation from any commission".

According to the presidency's website, the Constitution and the public service regulations do not make provision for a First Lady or First Ladies, and there is no such official designation. However, the practice is to provide administrative support to the president's spouses through the presidency's spousal office. This means the presidency will pay for spouses to accompany the president on official or public engagements.

The budget for the presidential spousal support office was R15.5 million in the 2009/10 financial year. Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj could not immediately provide the current figure.

In the 2008/09 financial year -- when Kgalema Motlanthe succeeded Thabo Mbeki as president -- the budget for the spousal support office was R8.1 million.

The PEC would meet on Friday to consolidate the recommendations from the commissions.

"The matter was reported by two newspapers in an unethical and unfair manner. What they did was to rely on their selfish sources and didn't even consider calling the ANC about the matter, to get our side of the story," he said.

A media briefing scheduled for Tuesday, to discuss the provincial general council's outcomes, was postponed to Friday.

The Eastern Cape ANC's final proposals would be tabled at the ANC's policy conference.

  • koos.vandermerwe.338 - 2012-06-21 00:11

    Before long we'll be paying for his pet goat too.

      Ryno - 2012-06-21 08:05


      mark.singh.9889 - 2012-06-21 08:07

      We are living in primitive times. Zuma is a civil servant of this country and we should only support the one wife that he married under civil law.

      gert.grobler.94 - 2012-06-21 12:11

      At Mark--not even one wife--he can support her --isn't he man enough to do so on his own?--now the country must pay for them also- He is actually insulting himself and his wives- he can't afford to pay for them, the whole of SA must help him pay for their existence....shame...

  • Garreth - 2012-06-21 06:49

    I support that big time.

  • Logan Porter - 2012-06-21 08:30

    Interesting not one comment in support of Zuma in any of the articles about all his wives. I am sure that the R15 million spent on hats for all his wives could be better used on education!

  • rob.bayliss.94 - 2012-06-21 08:43

    I would think that the principle here is far more important than the effect on our outgoing president. In all situations use public money for only one partner!

      gert.grobler.94 - 2012-06-21 12:06

      Yes it should be as the outgoing president that only he can receive the normal remuneration---not all the wives also. As it is now the ladies are probably queuing in mass outside the 6 or 7 villas of zuma, parading and trying to attract his attention, to be the next wives, and we must pay for their existence.

  • Themba - 2012-06-21 08:58

    One wife = R8 million and 4 wives = R15m, may be 20m now. I would like to see a breakdown.

  • mlungisi.crush - 2012-06-21 09:18

    Who support your wife? Is not you? Let him maintain his wives;not us pls! He is getting paid for being a President;he earns money from that presidency job; let him maintain! Like all the men outside;as we do!

  • werner.dippenaar.77 - 2012-06-21 10:48

    The majority voted for the clown, where is your support now, T shirt grabbing KFC vultures !

  • gert.grobler.94 - 2012-06-21 11:47

    I wish my boss would also pay for my other wives--oops --slip of the pen.

  • Mark - 2012-06-21 12:36

    I am already hearing ''Don't buy Daily Despatch, Don't buy'' It has been proven for the last couple of years that the ANC cannot rule. I hope the electorate will now wake up. We are being bled dry by this parasites and yet there is still some out there who will be voting ANC.

  • jaysonpaul.beckwith - 2012-06-21 12:58

    R15,5 million,,, ummm let's see,, that roughly totals around R330 000 per month per wife. Not bad for sitting around all day. Hell,, to think I've got to slog all day for my pack of peanuts at the end of the month.

  • Peter Boettger - 2015-05-15 05:05


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