The huts all have 32mm armoured glass in their windows, according to sources quoted by South Africa‘s Sunday Times, and their bedrooms are connected to the president’s house by underground tunnels.
Last year, Miss Ngema joined Mr Zuma on a diplomatic trip to France – a rarity for one not already in possession of first lady status – which was taken as a sign of her trustworthiness.
Other wives within the Zuma clan have been known to jockey for position and one, MaNtuli, was the subject of embarrassing headlines just before South Africa hosted the 2010 football World Cup after reportedly falling pregnant by her bodyguard.
Mr Zuma has indicated that next weekend’s marriage could be his last. At a birthday party thrown for him by his daughters in Durban last week, he was asked 70 questions by them including whether he was “done with marriage and children”, to which he answered: “I think so”.
The president was also asked whether he would go on a date with the white leader of the opposition Democratic Alliance party, Helen Zille, to which he replied in the affirmative.
Mr Zuma was born into a polygamous family and, according to his biographer Jeremy Gordin, is proud of his Zulu heritage despite the widespread condemnation and ridicule his actions have attracted both at home and abroad.
“In the next few weeks we will see a lot of negativity directed towards Zuma, from whites who get righteous about polygamy and question the cost to hide the racial undertones in their criticism, and black South Africans, particularly older, churchgoing women, who think it is un-Christian,” he said.
“Zuma knows it makes him unpopular but he made a decision when he came back to South Africa after fighting in exile that he would be the ANC’s Zulu man. I don’t know how many other things he has stuck to in his political career, but he has really stuck to that.”
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Category: Africa News