Former president Jacob Zuma. File picture: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters.
A political analyst believes that the Black First Land First’s (BLF) decision to use an audio clip endorsement by former president Jacob Zuma for a Zulu radio election advert is meant woo ANC voters sympathetic to Zuma to vote for the party next month.

Xolani Dube of the Durban-based Xubera Institute for Research and Development said the ad would work wonders for the party led by Andile Mngxitama mainly in KwaZulu-Natal where the ANC is beset by factions and indecisiveness over whether to use Zuma for its campaigns as pressure mounts to please President Cyril Ramaphosa.

In the 44-second radio clip which began running this week on SABC radio station Ukhozi FM, BLF starts its message by inserting a voice note of Zuma calling Mngxitama and later urging his supporters to vote for the BLF because the party and its leadership want the land to be returned to black people.

In the same advert, BLF presents itself as “foot soldiers” of the radical economic transformation policy, saying it will fight tooth and nail to keep Zuma out of jail and defend transformation.

The call by Zuma to his supporters to vote for BLF was made last year outside the Durban High Court shortly after he appeared in court to face corruption charges emanating from the multi-billion rand arms deal of the late 1990s.

Among the people that supported Zuma in court were Mngxitama and his top leadership.

This was also at a time when the ANC sought to distance itself from Zuma’s court case.

Dube, meanwhile, said of the BLF: “Zuma is what Mandela was to the ANC,” adding the ex-president and the party share a common ideology on the issue of transforming the economy and redistributing land.

He said the ANC and its alliance partners, the SACP and Cosatu could not at this stage lament the move as they once said Zuma should not campaign for the ANC, thus disowning him.

“By using this endorsement by Zuma, the BLF want all people who are sympathetic to Zuma to vote for them. Zuma is popular not only throughout KZN but also in the whole country.”

Saturday Star