The politician remains vulnerable in the quest to hold those responsible to account.
Statistics suggest there was more than one police unit in the province linked to unlawful killings.
Expect more violence until the acceptance that it is a valid tool of political expression is addressed.
The urgency of the operation may have been to pre-empt Julius Malema from entering the fray.
The recent police statistics again show how the well-off and business control the crime agenda, while street robberies are a much bigger problem.
Since Marikana, the South African police has struggled to balance a stretching budget without compromising quality.
Political intimidation is generally carried out with the approval of dominant political role-players, writes David Bruce.
The party's leaders decry intimidation, but some local despots in its ranks use fear to retain power.
The song and dance goes on but the African National Congress' aim to save Zuma's skin has been achieved.
But it is those who made the decision to unleash maximum force who must be held responsible, says David Bruce.