President Zuma resigns

South African President Jacob Zuma (image) resigned on February 14. He had been the leader of the nation for 9 years. He is 75 years old, and currently has 4 wives and more than 20 children. He was brought up by his mother who struggled to make a living. Zuma did not receive a formal education. As a young boy, he joined the fight against apartheid. He was thrown into jail along with Nelson Mandela.

Zuma was respected for his fight against apartheid. However, his presidency was marked with corruption, accusations, and scandals. He was asked by his own political party to step down. Cyril Ramaphosa (image) has taken over as president of South Africa.



One of the biggest issues that South Africa faced was apartheid, where people of different races were treated differently and led separate lives. Apartheid went into effect as an official policy in the country in 1948. The schools, hospitals, restaurants, and beaches that people could go to depended upon their race. The majority of South Africans were black people, and the minority were white. The white people were favored over the others, and were treated in a superior manner. Apartheid came to an end in 1991.

Nelson Mandela was born in a small town in South Africa in 1918. His name was Rolihlahla Mandela, and he was given the name “Nelson” by his school teacher because it was common practice for school children to be given “Christian” names. He studied to become a lawyer. In the 1950s, he became involved in trying to bring an end to apartheid. He was arrested in 1962 and spent 27 years in a prison on Robben Island. While in jail, he became a strong symbol for the fight against apartheid. He was finally released in 1990. The country held its first multi-racial elections in 1994. Mandela won, becoming the first black president of South Africa. Mandela died in 2013. He is remembered for his fight against apartheid and for his beliefs that all people are equal, regardless of skin color, religion, or background.

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Did you know?

South Africa’s second largest city, Cape Town, might run out of water very soon. The city officials had predicted that the day will be in April, but now have pushed back the day to July.

Image Credits: for the images of Zuma and Ramaphosa, for the White Area sign and Mandela’s image
Sources: Newsy, BBC,