Tshidi Madia15 April 2024 | 6:04

Trevor Manuel gives a scathing criticism of Jacob Zuma, calling him 'totally abusive'

The former ANC veteran lambasted Former President Jacob Zuma's political ambitions and his new MK Party.

Trevor Manuel gives a scathing criticism of Jacob Zuma, calling him 'totally abusive'

Former President Jacob Zuma addresses members of the media under the banner of new party uMkhontho We Sizwe on 16 December 2023. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/Eyewitness News

JOHANNESBURG - Struggle veteran Trevor Manuel has described Former President Jacob Zuma as a "totally abusive" individual, who’s taken the hallowed symbols of the African National Congress' (ANC) Umkhonto we Sizwe and is now using them against it - while refusing to leave the party. 

The former finance minister spoke to Eyewitness News at the sidelines of an interfaith service for Palestine at the St George’s Cathedral in Cape Town on Sunday night.

Manuel himself confirmed in 2022 that he was no longer a part of the ANC.

He said the ruling party had lived through many breakaways, but the MK splinter was very deliberate.


- Tracking the rise of Zuma's MK Party

Manuel said hijacking these names spoke of abuse, a claim he said described the former president well.

"Whether it be the things that he was charged for like rape, things that he wasn’t charged for but enabled, like corruption, the way in which he broke down the systems of government, all of it speaks to an individual who is totally abusive."

Manuel said he wished people could see through the former president.

His views come as the ANC and MK Party await a court judgment on the use of the name and symbols, which have been attached to the former liberation movement since the 1960s.