Zuma in the eye of storm during speech as marquee blown away

The president was mid-sentence when a strong wind and heavy rains wreaked havoc, causing his security detail to rush him to safety.

Jacob Zuma had to be escorted out of the marquee as heavy rains blew it off the ground. Picture: Victor Magwedze/EWN.

GOPANE – President Jacob Zuma had to be quickly escorted out a marquee where he was giving his Reconciliation Day speech in the North West province.

Zuma was mid-sentence when a strong wind and heavy rains wreaked havoc, causing his security detail to rush him to safety.

The marquee structure was blown away during the sudden storm.

The president is in the North West province for today’s celebrations.

The light rain during the president speech quickly turned violent as strong winds started blowing dust and rattling the marquee.

The hinged structure was uprooted out of the ground.

Hundreds of Gopane residents who had been listening intently to the president started screaming and running for safety during the sudden storm.

Zuma was escorted to safety and no injuries or fatalities have been reported.