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December 15, 2015

Sub-Saharan Africa
The South African Roller Coaster

On December 10, President Jacob Zuma fired Nhlanhla Nene, the well regarded finance minister, and replaced him with the unknown and inexperienced David van Rooven. Though Zuma is not required by the …

Zuma Finance Minister

December 24, 2015

Sub-Saharan Africa
Jacob Zuma’s Hold on Power

Jacob Zuma’s political power is based on his support by the African National Congress’s political apparatus – often called Luthuli House, after the party’s headquarters building in Johannesburg. With…


March 7, 2016

Global Governance
Headed South: Jacob Zuma Leads South Africa toward the Precipice

—Johannesburg, March 6 South Africa is in the grips of its most serious economic and political crisis since 1994, when the country elected its first post-apartheid government under Nelson Mandela. T…

Protesters carry placards as they take part in a "Zuma must fall" demonstration in Pretoria, South Africa, on December 16, 2015.

March 17, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
South Africa’s President Zuma in Trouble with His Party

South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma has often been accused of corruption. But, until recently his hold on the governing African National Congress (ANC), with its huge parliamentary majority, has ensu…

Zuma and Gupta

April 20, 2016

Global Governance
So You Want to Be a Global Power: South Africa’s Ambitions on the World Stage

The following is a guest post by Naomi Egel, research associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program. As a member of the BRICS, a leader in African peacekeeping, and an as…

South African President Jacob Zuma addresses attendees during the seventieth session of the United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York on September 28, 2015.

May 17, 2016

South Africa
South Africa’s Currency Falls Again on Rumors of Finance Minister’s Arrest

On May 15, the Sunday Times (English, Johannesburg) published rumors of the impending arrest of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan over alleged revenue service irregularities. However, on May 16, Beeld …

pravin gordhan

August 24, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
The New Architecture of South African Politics

Following the governing African National Congress’s (ANC) decline in the August 3 municipal elections, in effect a referendum on the scandal plagued administration of President Jacob Zuma, South Afri…

Coalition Governments

August 31, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
South Africa: Fat Politicians and Thin Voters

A month after the governing African National Congress (ANC) lost heavily in South Africa’s municipal elections, the party is at war with itself. From my perspective, the struggle is between democrati…

South Africa Voters

September 30, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
Big South African Union Endorses Cyril Ramaphosa for ANC Party Leader

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) endorsed Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa for the presidency of the African National Congress (ANC) on September 26. The election of party president will take …


October 12, 2016

Sub-Saharan Africa
Exit of South Africa’s Finance Minister? Not So Fast

Pravin Gordhan faces charges of fraud and has been summoned to the Pretoria Regional Court on November 2. The charges appear to be spurious. They concern Gordhan’s approval of the early retirement of…