SA's Zulufication has shaken Zuma's support base
The Times Editorial: President Jacob Zuma's approval ratings have taken a dip, according to a survey.
The TNS survey further reveals that the most marked drop in approval comes from two categories of metropolitan South Africans - coloureds and Indians.
The decline had been "more marked" among coloureds, Indians and older people.
"President Zuma's approval levels in metro areas, as measured in September, show a long, slow decline overall since the highs of November 2009," TNS's Neil Higgs said.
Are we really surprised that coloureds and Indians don't "like" Zuma all that much when the current perception is that it is Africans first and then the rest a distant second-best?
As columnist Anthony Butler recently wrote: "The "nonracial" ANC should be seeking to recoup the ground it has lost in the Western Cape. Instead, an increasingly racist discourse prevails in the movement, which castigates 'coloureds' as the unwitting dupes of white oppressors."
And, within the civil service, senior officials who are "broadly black" but clearly not black enough, have been forced to accept that affirmation action - under the Zuma administration - is not meant for them. These days, they stick to the long grass, like their white counterparts have learnt to do.
Furthermore, Zuma's term in office has seen the creation of a new ethnic term - Zulufication - which refers to the president's penchant for surrounding himself with those who share his ethnicity. The protection of those from good Zulu stock - police commissioner Bheki Cele and Intelligence Minister Siyabonga Cwele - while patently unsuitable to hold office, continues to perplex observers.
Zuma has no one else to blame for coloured and Indian South Africans believing that their interests are of little if no concern to him. They are not his power base and cannot ensure that he leaves Mangaung next year a triumphant man.