The Zuma-Bongekile Wedding

Pomp, colour, and extravagance

By  | Mar 14, 2022, 08:09 AM  | Jacob Zuma  | Relationships

An image of Jacob Zuma in wedding attire
The former president Jacob Zuma has been in the news for a lot of reasons; from his infamous rape scandal, his numerous corruption allegations, his jail term, and his love for women.

Zuma is a proud polygamous African man. And while some men have never had the chance of getting married even once in their life, Jacob Zuma has been married at least seven times and is currently the husband of four proud women.

In 2012, Zuma walked down the aisle with his newest bride- Gloria Bongekile Ngema, with whom he had sired a son in 2009.

Take a look at Zuma’s wedding and all the details you need to know.

Who Is Zuma’s Newest Bride?

Gloria Bongekile Ngema-Zuma, credit: Briefly

Zuma’s latest wife is called Gloria Bongekile Ngema. She is a well-educated woman with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.

She was born in 1965 and is currently 57 years old. At the time of her wedding to Zuma, she was 47.

Before becoming Mrs Zulu, Gloria worked for some big companies including Delloite & Touche and Standard Chartered bank.

Ngema is also a humanitarian, she founded the Bongi-Ngema Zuma Foundation in 2010 with the aim of fighting against diabetes.

Where did Zuma and Bongekile Ngema meet?

It is unclear where Gloria Bongekile Ngema and Jacob Zuma first met although it’s clear that the two had courted for a long time before they finally got hitched.

The couple welcomed their first son together in 2006.

Jacob Zuma and Bongekile's wedding

Zuma and Bongekile at their wedding, credit: dailymail

In April 2012, Zuma and Bongekile held their wedding in  Nxamalala village, Nkandla town as per the Zulu customs.

On the day of the main event, Gloria dressed in a beautiful lilac dress and a coat with full sleeves. She also had a pair of diamond earrings and a matching diamond necklace.

The private colourful wedding was graced by over 2000 guests, mostly from Nkandla town, and they came dressed for the part.

Guests arriving at Zuma's wedding, credit: iol

The day after the wedding ceremony, Zuma and Bongekile held their Umabo or closing ceremony of their wedding where the bride presents gifts to the groom’s family. 

Gloria Bongekile was dressed in full traditional regalia, including a beautiful red Isicholo (ceremonial women’s hat,) and traditional dress. Like in his previous weddings, Zuma adorned his traditional Zulu wedding attire.

Gloria Bongekile in her traditional wedding dress, credit: iol

DJ Linda Sibiya was the MC for the day and guests were entertained by the famous Maskandi group- Izingane Zoma. It is said that around twelve cows were slaughtered for the two ceremonies, and everyone present feasted like royalty.

As per the customs, Zuma’s other three wives were present and they fully participated in the ceremony. 

Zuma and Bongekile’s honeymoon.

It is not clear whether the couple had a honeymoon because the following Monday after the wedding weekend, the ex-president was back in the office.

Zuma’s other wives

Jacob Zuma has three other wives besides Bongekile namely:

  • Gertrude Sizakele Khumalo (married in 1973)

  • Nompumelelo Ntuli (married in 2008)

  • Thobeka Stacie Mabhija (married in 2010)

Will Zuma marry again?

As a proud polygamist, there is always a chance that Jacob Zuma might get himself another bride.

In 2017, he got engaged to The Real Housewives of Durban star, Nonkanyiso Conco, who is at least 50 years younger than him. The two have a child together, but things did not work out between them and they went their separate ways.

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