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Bilateral Relations

African Union (AU)

South African Development Community (SADC)

President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma, Mr.
  • Date of Birth: 12 April 1942
Current Positions
  • President of the Republic of South Africa since 9 May 2009.

  • President of the African National Congress (ANC) since 20 December 2007.
Career/Positions/Memberships/Other Activities
  • Influenced by a family member who was a trade unionist, he became involved in Politics at an early age.

  • Joined the African National Congress (ANC) in 1958 and

  • Became an active member of Umkhonto we Sizwe (1962).

  • Whilst on his way out of the country, he was arrested with a group of 52 recruits near Zeerust in North West Province (1963).

  • Convicted of conspiring to overthrow the government, he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on Robben Island (1963).

  • After his release in December 1973, he worked to mobilise internal resistance and was instrumental in the re-establishment of ANC underground structures in the then Natal, now KwaZulu-Natal (1974 - 1975).

  • Left South Africa in 1975 and for the next 12 years was based first in Swaziland and then Mozambique. He was involved in underground work with others, giving leadership to the ANC structures operating inside South Africa. He also dealt with the thousands of young exiles that poured out of South Africa in the wake of the Soweto uprising in June 1976.

  • Lived in several African countries working for the ANC and rose rapidly through the ranks to become a member of the National Executice Committee (NEC) of the ANC (1977).

  • Served as Deputy Chief Representative and later Chief Representative of the ANC in Mozambique until 1984, the year of the signing of the Nkomati Accord between the Mozambican and South African governments.

  • Served on the ANC's Military Committee and Political Committee when formed in the mid 80's.

  • Appointed Head of the Underground Structures and shortly thereafter, Chief of Intelligence at the ANC Head Office in Lusaka, Zambia (1987).

  • He was one of the first ANC leaders to return to South Africa to begin the process of negotiation, following the unbanning of the ANC (1990).

  • Instrumental in organising the Groote-Schuur Minute between the FW de Klerk Government and the ANC that reached important decisions about the return of exiles and the release of political prisoners (1990).

  • Elected Chairperson of the Southern Natal and took a leading role in fighting violence in the region, this resulted in a number of Peace Accords involving the ANC and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) (1990).

  • Elected the Deputy Secretary-General of the ANC during the National
    Conference held in South Africa after the unbanning of the organisation in 1991.

  • Deployed in KwaZulu-Natal because he felt that he had a role to play in bringing about peace and stability in the then highly volatile region (1994).

  • Nominated as the ANC candidate for the Premiership of the KZN Province (1994).

  • His strategic thinking and conflict resolution skills played a pivotal role in ending conflict in KwaZulu Natal and the then PWV region, where state-sponsored violence was tearing communities apart.

  • Appointed Member of the Executive Committee (MEC) of Economic Affairs and Tourism for the KZN Provincial Government (1994).

  • As MEC, he worked hard to develop the tourism industry in the province. He created a good working relationship between business, labour, and worked tirelessly to facilitate new investments in the KwaZulu Natal economy.

  • Elected National Chairperson of the ANC and Chairperson of the ANC in KZN (December 1994).

  • Executive Deputy President of the Republic of South Africa (17 June 1999 - 22 June 2005).

  • Became Leader of Government Business in the National Assembly (June 1999).

  • Started the process of promoting positive values through the launch of the Moral Regeneration Movement.

  • Deputy President of the ANC (December 1997).

  • Chairperson of the South African National Aids Council.

  • Chancellor at the University of Zululand.

  • Patron of the Jacob Zuma Bursary Fund (1998).

  • Patron of the Peace and Reconstruction Foundation.

  • Patron of Albert Luthuli Education and Development Foundation.

  • Played an important role as mediator and facilitator of peace on the continent especially in Bulundi and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Source: South African Government Information
High Commissioner
H.E. L Xingwana

Head of Mission
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