On Friday the 30th of Mar 2017, Jupiter squared Pluto. This dramatic transit coincided with the triggering of Brexit by Theresa May but also with a rapidly growing leadership crisis in South Africa that led to the Rand, going into freefall and culminating just a few days later with one credit ratings agency re-assigning their currency to junk status.
Just a year before, the scenario looked very different and a lot more hopeful. Many insiders expected Jacob Zuma, the South African president who has been embroiled in everything from corruption to rape charges, to resign. Back in February 2017, Jupiter and Pluto met in a harmonious trine aspect, sparking hopes of positive changes to come. After he reinstated finance minster, Pravin Gordhan, whom many believe he had fired for personal reasons, investors thought that the country was finally getting back on track…
Sadly, Zuma and his ruling party, the ANC, chose to not take the high road. After surviving a vote of no confidence in November 2016, Jacob Zuma seems to have become more corrupt and brazen than ever. He fired the same minister again recently – just as he was about to embark on important trade talks with UK investors – and then threatened to take South Africa out of the International Criminal Court just so that he and his cronies could not be prosecuted for their misdeeds.
Now, with Mars set to trine Pluto from a position very close to sensitive points in South Africa’s ‘New South Africa’ 1994 chart, and nationwide protest marches organised across the country for Friday, I can’t help but wonder what the next instalment is for South Africa? Will the grassroots movement, which once helped to bring down the Apartheid regime, show that they are capable of bringing down corruption and abuse of power at the highest levels of government again?
One way to interrogate this possibility is to take a look at the current astrological transits in play to see if they might be able to yield some clues as to what might happen…
Current Transits to 1994 Mandela Inauguration Chart
I am using the inauguration of Nelson Mandela on 10 May 1994 in Pretoria as the definitive chart for the ‘new’ South Africa, since, as Nick Campion points out, it ‘represents the de facto, de jure and ceremonial creation for the new African ruled South Africa.’
Here it is with current transits for 6 Apr 2017. I have set the time to reflect the exact moment that Mars trines Pluto.
Notice that the transiting Moon is at 16 Leo and making a tense square to the Sun & Moon in the inauguration chart. So the people are now not very pleased at all with their current leader and feel at odds with the way they felt back in 1994 versus now.
Notice too the position of transiting Mars in Taurus. It is almost EXACTLY conjunct the Sun in the 1994 chart. This suggests a great deal of anger and resentment towards Jacob Zuma. Mars is also very close to a conjunction with the Taurus Moon in the 1994 chart.
Now in mundane astrology, the Moon usually represents the people/electorate, while the Sun stands for their leader or president. So Mars on the Moon could be interpreted as angry people marching in protest. What is striking here is the difference in relationship between the Sun and Moon in the 1994 chart vs. now.
In 1994, the Sun & Moon are still within a few degrees of conjunction from each other. Symbolically, this tells us that the people and their leader, Nelson Mandela, were very closely associated and regarded each other well. Much beloved by all, Mandela was not just the President of South Africa, but also considered to be the father of the Rainbow Nation and a well-respected figure all over the world. How times have changed!
Mars is in Taurus, which rules things like farming and finance. This suggests that the reason the people are angry with Zuma is because of his sacking of the finance minster and the subsequent fall in the Rand that followed, with the cherry on top being rating agency, Standard and Poor’s decision to relegate the Rand to junk status. It also fits with the recent public condemnations heaped on Zuma by a number of trade union bosses, who up until now, have been staunch, if long suffering allies of the president. So far, so very fitting!
Now, Mars is the planet of war and swift, forceful action. It therefore is not beyond the realm of possibility to think that:
a) trade unions and business leaders may take action to push for Zuma’s resignation; and b) there may be violent clashes with authority figures and their representatives during the protest marches on Friday.
Mars loves to moan and complain, and the people certainly plan to show their displeasure. But could it also mean the swift and decisive removal of SA’s leader …and if so, how? The position and rulerships of Mars may help us to give us a clue.
As ruler of the 9th house in the inauguration chart, Mars governs the law, society, ethics and cultural/spiritual beliefs.It also rules publishing and foreign relations. Ordinarily, given the circumstances, I would say that we are most likely looking at a vote of no confidence/impeachment of some kind. However, the initial signs look bleak: this motion currently seems unlikely to be supported by the ANC, given Zuma’s derived 11th house of groups and memberships = the 8th in the 1994 chart. The 8th cusp is Pisces and so ruled by flaky Neptune, easily led and weak-willed – it hardly surprises me that the ANC’s National Working Committee failed to find fault with Zuma’s recent cabinet reshuffle and let him slither off the hook once again.
However, Pluto, the ultimate planet of karma, retribution and finality, happens to be close to a conjunction with the DS of the 1994 chart from the 6th house. So are we looking at a leadership contest of some kind? Pluto rules the 4th house of the SA chart, which governs domestic policy, the people, land and housing, as well as the Opposition Party in Parliament. Could this mean another attempt by the Democratic Alliance at impeachment via a parliamentary vote of no confidence? The DA have attempted this route before – in November 2016, after the extent of Zuma’s corruption and collusion with the Gupta family was revealed. However, that attempt failed after the motion was voted down by MPs.
Mars-Pluto and a Motion of No Confidence
Things may be different this time, though. Pluto is in Capricorn, the sign associated with institutions, rules and regulations. Placed on the DS of the SA chart, and in Zuma’s derived 10th house of career, status and positions of responsibility, it seems to point to a possible end to his political career arising from within the very institution over which he governs – parliament.
“Parliament hired Jacob Zuma and only Parliament can fire him.” – Democratic Alliance
Although the ANC executive still seem to be in Zuma’s pocket, the support of the rest of the party is beginning to look a lot more shaky. Several leading figures within the ANC have already spoken out against Zuma, a highly unusual move. These have been followed by calls from the ANC’s key allies – the SA Communist Party and a number of trade union bosses – for Zuma to resign. It does make you wonder whether the vote might go another way this time around if a another motion of no confidence was tabled.
And indeed, such a motion has just been agreed! According to news outlet, News24:
National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete has agreed to requests for yet another motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma….Parliament will debate the motion on Tuesday, April 18, spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said.
A wonderful development for the South African people – and just in time for today’s Mars-Pluto trine! Just the breakthrough one would hope for, given this stunning and powerful transit. Perhaps change will come to South Africa after all? To read more about the Mars-Pluto trine, visit the Astro-Sphere Astrology website.
Of course, it remains to be seen whether the motion will be successful. Mercury will retrograde in 4 days, which could throw a spanner in the works. However, a more in-depth analysis of the astrology of April 18 will have to wait for another blog post.
In the interim, there is a lot to be said for people power – South Africans should do everything in their power to make use of their constitutional rights – vote with their feet and pens. It worked once to bring down Apartheid, there’s no reason why it couldn’t work again. People simply need to put pressure on their local political representatives and trade union leaders to take a stand and vote with their conscience.
Cardinal T-square: Jupiter re-enters the picture
Key planetary player in the SA story, Jupiter then re-enters the picture on the same day as many protest marches are planned to take place around the country. Together with the Sun in Aries, it will form a cardinal T-square with Pluto, which could really turn up the heat in this situation.
Jupiter is currently in Libra – the sign of law and justice, so it’s opposition to the Aries Sun could be interpreted as the guardians/ protectors of law/injustice versus those in power. It could also be seen as the bringer of divine/natural justice in the form of retribution/payback…after all, Jupiter is the planet most associated with Zeus, king of the gods, whose bolt of lightning coudl be use to strike down those who dared to disobey the divine laws or displease the gods. In addition, Jupiter will be opposing the 1994 Mars in the 9th house, which again seems to signify the need to stand up for, and defend, the rule of law, the hopes and beliefs of the country and its cherished constitutional rights via political or legal avenues.
Both will square Pluto in Capricorn, suggesting a stand-off or power struggle and an attempt to defy those in charge, who may try to shut down any form of criticism. Pluto does also rules the 4th, so it coudl also be an astrological expression of “Amandla”, that good old anti-Apartheid slogan: Power to the People!
Now, Jupiter rules the 5th and 6th houses in the 1994 chart, which in mundane astrology, equates to the workers/labour force (trade unions?) and the youth – so will we see a big turnout from the EFF and COSATU? Given Cyril Ramaphosa’s recent comments, it is entirely possible.
Interestingly, the Sun does not rule any house because Leo is intercepted in the first house, perhaps minimising its agency. However, it is exalted in Aries, so not entirely toothless but perhaps in a somewhat weakened state, which will increase as the Moon continues to wax. Located in the 9th house, the emphasis seems to remain on the law/constitution as the best means to combat corruption and poor leadership.
Active all weekend, it could also also mean attempts by the government to shut down free speech and silence critics, so Musi Maimane had better watch out and stay safe. One can’t always sugar coat Pluto, I’m afraid.
That being said, the gathering strength of the Libra Full Moon suggests that it could be mass support and public opinion that finally swings things in favour of the rebels. More on this below….
Full Moon in Libra – Will mass action once again help restore justice to SA politics?
Here it is worth mentioning that it is Full Moon on Tuesday. In and of itself, this event could signify mass resistance from the people (full moons are always Sun-Moon oppositions) towards their leader. But if you add in the fact that the Moon (the people), which will be in Libra – the sign of fairness and justice, will oppose the Aries Sun (ruler/president) at EXACTLY the same degree as Jacob Zuma’s natal Sun (his birthday is on 12 April), then things really look like they could take on a life of their own!
What’s more, this Sun will be orbiting close to Uranus, which it will conjunct on Friday the 14 of April 2017. If you consider that Uranus was discovered during the French Revolution and so is associated with cut-offs and/or abrupt endings (we all know what happened to Marie Antoinette and her husband!), it could spell the end of Zuma’s leadership.
My advice then? Get behind the Vote of No confidence by signing the petition that the DA have launched to support their motion and take to the streets on Friday. With the support of all South Africans, justice may perhaps finally prevail for the first time since Mandela was released from prison.
To quote an old rallying cry – Amandla!