Durban - Michael Zuma, a brother of former president Jacob Zuma and a senior member of the Zuma family in Nkandla, has passed away.
According to information from Khanya Zuma, another senior member of the Zuma family, Michael was not well and he passed away on Sunday morning, but Khanya did not say exactly where Michael passed away.
His passing comes as his brother Jacob Zuma is languishing inside an Estcourt prison, for contempt of court, and it has attracted outpouring grief from ANC members who are close to Zuma, and other sympathetic members of the South African community.
“Yes, he passed away on Sunday at around 11am. He has not been well for some time now,” Khanya said in a sorrowful voice, when Independent Media asked him about the matter.
The spokesperson of the Jacob Zuma Foundation Mzwanele Manyi said, as the foundation, they were not aware of the bereavement, but they would get in touch with the family.
Mike, as he was known in the Zuma family, was always on the side of the jailed former head of state during his trials and he played a very close role when Zuma traditionally wedded MaNtuli (Nompumelelo Ntuli) in 2008.
Although nothing has been officially said by the Department of Correctional Services, Zuma can apply to leave his prison and go home to bury his brother, and later come back.
Michael’s passing comes as KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng continue to be gripped by violent protest, linked to calls for Zuma to be released from jail. So far, the KZN government says estimates shos that the protests have inflicted a loss of R100 million to the province’s economy.