South Africa President Jacob Zuma to marry third wife

South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma is set to marry his third wife.

Senior figures from the ruling ANC, the trade union movement and the South African Communist Party are expected to attend, alongside family and friends.


online casino

Mr Zuma, a Zulu, was meant to marry his fiance Thobeka Mabhija, 36, last year but the wedding was postponed due to Mr Zuma’s political commitments.

Correspondents say Mr Zuma’s belief in the traditional practice of polygamy has split South Africans.

Some support him but many younger people believe it should have no place in a modern society.

Under Zulu tradition, Mr Zuma’s two current wives are supposed to approve of the new wife and attend the wedding ceremony.

It has also emerged that Mr Zuma, 67, is expected to take a fourth wife but no date has been set.

His new fiance, Gloria Bongi Ngema last week brought umbondo (wedding gifts) to the Zuma family, reports say.

This ceremony is the last traditional event before the wedding and is done after ilobolo has been paid to the bride’s family.

"The traditional wedding of President Jacob Zuma and Thobeka Mabhija tomorrow, 4 January, is a private family ceremony," said a statement from the presidency on Sunday.

The office asked journalists to "allow the family the privacy that they are entitled to".

South African media reported that Mr Zuma’s home in Nkandla, in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, was a hive of activity in the run-up to the ceremony.

When Mr Zuma was inaugurated as president in May, speculation was rife about who would be the first lady.

He has attended some high-profile events with all his wives, including Ms Mabhija.

Mr Zuma paid ilobolo (dowry) to the Mabhija family two years ago.

Earlier this year, the Mabhija family sent gifts to the Zuma family, an indication that all matters regarding the wedding, including a date, had been set, reports say.

This will be Mr Zuma’s fifth wedding.

Mr Zuma, 67, married his first wife Sizakele Khumalo-Zuma, in 1973, and his second wife, Nompumelelo Ntuli-Zuma, two years ago.

He is also divorced from Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.

One of his earlier wives, Kate Mantsho-Zuma, died in 2000.