Monday 23 October 2017

Afrique du Sud

(AFP (eng) 10/21/17)
The killing of four American special operations soldiers in Niger has highlighted the increasing role elite units are playing across Africa, which is rapidly becoming a major center of US military action. Their mission is to counter the advances of a slew of jihadist movements across the continent, including Al-Shabaab in Somalia, affiliates of the Islamic State group in the Sahel region and Boko Haram in Nigeria. Of the 8,000 special forces "operators" deployed globally this year, more than 1,300 are in Africa, according to officials from the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM), which is based in Tampa, Florida. Another 5,000 or so are in the Middle East. In five years, the number of US...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/20/17)
OHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa’s National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has given President Jacob Zuma until Nov. 30 to make submissions before it decides whether to reinstate 783 corruption charges filed against him before he became president, it said on Friday. The Supreme Court of Appeal last Friday upheld a High Court ruling to reinstate the charges against Zuma. They were set aside in April 2009 by the then-head of the NPA, paving the way for Zuma to run for president later that year. The ruling by the appeals court amplified calls for Zuma, 75, to step down before his term as president ends in 2019.
(Reuters (Eng) 10/20/17)
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The #MeToo social media campaign to raise awareness about sexual harassment and abuse has sparked conversation in parts of Africa where domestic violence is rampant but strong cultural and religious taboos prevent women from admitting it. Prompted by sexual abuse allegations against American film mogul Harvey Weinstein, millions of women around the world have been sharing their experiences of harassment and abuse on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #MeToo. The movement has reached only...
(AFP (eng) 10/19/17)
The South African government on Thursday removed the head of troubled state-owned airline South African Airways (SAA), which is deeply in debt and struggling to stay in the air. Chairwoman Dudu Myeni, a close ally of President Jacob Zuma, will be replaced by Johannes Bhekumuzi Magwaza, the finance ministry announced in a boardroom sweep-out. Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba "hopes that the new board... will implement the airline's structural strategy and bring it to financial stability," it said in a statement. The government was last month forced to bail out the loss-making carrier to avoid it defaulting on a 3 billion-rand ($221 million) loan, and refinancing of further debt is under negotiation.
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
The ANC has held power in South Africa since Nelson Mandela won the first post-apartheid elections in 1994, but the battle to be its new leader threatens to split the party apart. Rivalries are intensifying within the African National Congress ahead of a conference in December when delegates will choose the party chief to succeed Jacob Zuma, who will remain the national president. For months, the divisive contest was a two-horse race between deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, a wealthy former businessman, and Zuma's ex-wife Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, South Africa's former home affairs minister. The vote threatens to permanently break up the ANC, which united many black South Africans...
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
The sequel to Nelson Mandela's celebrated autobiography "Long Walk to Freedom" will be released on Thursday after his unfinished draft was completed by a South African writer, his foundation announced. Titled "Dare not Linger", the book tells of Mandela's five years as president after the end of apartheid and the first multi-race elections in South Africa in 1994. "Long Walk to Freedom", published shortly after the election, was a global best-seller, selling more than 14 million copies, and was turned...
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
Rent-a-room giant Airbnb said Tuesday that it had provided accommodation for 1.2 million visitors to Africa over the last year -- double the previous year as tourism expands across the continent. The website now offers more than 100,000 accommodation options in Africa, global public affairs director Chris Lehane said on a visit to Johannesburg. "It's an incredibly rich and diverse continent, an incredibly dynamic place, certainly a big part of our future," Lehane told AFP. Airbnb was founded in 2008...
(AFP (eng) 10/17/17)
South African President Jacob Zuma sacked a vocal critic from his cabinet on Tuesday, a move set to deepen tensions before the ANC chooses a new party leader in December. In his second reshuffle this year, Zuma dropped higher education minister Blade Nzimande, a veteran member of the South African Communist Party, which is a key political ally within the ruling ANC alliance. The SACP hit back at the "authoritarianism" of Zuma, who the SACP has repeatedly called to resign over corruption scandals. "This is an act of provocation," the party's deputy secretary general Solly Mapaila told reporters.
(AFP (eng) 10/17/17)
Though its motto is "one Africa, one voice", the reality of "Africa's parliament" could not be more different. Since its creation in 2004, the Pan-African Parliament (PAP) has struggled to make its voice heard, prompting its deputies to ask themselves at a recent gathering: "What are we for?" "Every time we're here, we obsess over the same things. If we are not making laws, then what's the point of being here?" Corneille Padonou of Benin said to his fellow parliamentarians...
(APA 10/16/17)
APA-Abuja (Nigeria) - The former South African President, Mr. Thabo Mbeki, has urged African leaders to emulate Obasanjo in preserving African heritage. Speaking during his visit to the Presidential Library (OOPL) of Nigerian former leader Olusegu Obasanjo in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital in south-western Nigeria, Mbeki challenged other ex-African leaders to replicate same in their countries. Mbeki, who served as the second post-apartheid President of South Africa from 14 June 1999 to 24 September 2008, was accompanied by Mr. Darkey Africa, the Consul General of South Africa in Nigeria, was conducted round the various departments of the library complex.
(APA 10/16/17)
APA-Dakar (Senegal) - The president of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, will deliver the Norman Borlaug Lecture on Monday 16 October as part of the World Food Prize events taking place from October 16 to 20, 2017 in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. The Norman Borlaug Lecture under the title: “Betting on Africa to Feed the World”, will be held on World Food Day, October 16, in conjunction with the annual World Food Prize celebration. AfDB President Adesina will receive...
(AFP (eng) 10/13/17)
South Africa's Supreme Court of Appeal ruled on Friday that President Jacob Zuma can face prosecution on almost 800 charges of corruption relating to a 1990s arms deal. Zuma had lodged a challenge at the court in Bloemfontein after a lower court decided in 2016 to reinstate charges that were previously dropped by prosecutors. The National Prosecuting Authority must now decide whether to pursue a prosecution. "The reasons for discontinuing the prosecution... do not bear scrutiny," said Supreme Court judge...
(APA 10/13/17)
APA-Pretoria (South Africa) - South Africa's Supreme Court has upheld a lower court's ruling that a 2009 decision by state prosecutors to drop the charges against President Jacob Zuma was wrong, a development that paves the way for his prosecution over a litany of corruption charges relating to a 1990s arms deal. Zuma had appealed against a ruling handed last year by the High Court to reinstate charges relating to a 1999 case against him that had previously been dropped...
(AFP (eng) 10/12/17)
A South African court will rule Thursday on whether the suspicious 1971 death of an apartheid-era activist in custody was suicide, as police officers claimed, or actually a regime killing. For many, the case -- the culmination of a relentless campaign by the activist's family -- has brought back raw memories of apartheid. Ahmed Timol, a 29-year-old campaigner against white-minority rule, was arrested in Johannesburg and after five days in detention he died after plummeting from the city's police headquarters. Officers at the time said he took his own life -- a verdict endorsed by an inquest.
(Reuters (Eng) 10/12/17)
ESTCOURT, South Africa (Reuters) - Police fired rubber bullets and stun grenades to break up crowds hurling insults at a group of men accused of cannibalism in a South African farming town. More than 500 people gathered outside the magistrates court in eastern Kwa-Zulu Natal province on Thursday as the men sat inside, hiding their faces with their hooded tops and their hands. Authorities originally charged seven men after police said one of them had walked into a police station...
(APA 10/12/17)
APA-Johannesburg (South Africa) - The South African city of Johannesburg has emerged as Africa’s most popular destination in 2016‚ followed by Cape Town‚ according to the annual Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index on Thursday. According to the survey, the commercial city of Johannesburg welcomed 4.57 million international overnight visitors in 2016 – a 24 percent increase on the previous year’s 3.69 million visitors. Another African city, Cape Town, rose from third place in 2015 to become the second most popular...
(The Associated Press 10/12/17)
An anti-apartheid activist who died in 1971 was tortured and killed by South African police, a court said Thursday, a landmark decision that raised hopes that dozens of similar cases would be investigated. The inquest into Ahmed Timol’s death had riveted South Africans as legal experts said it could set a precedent for examining similar deaths. “It is sad that it took so long,” Nobel Peace Prize winner and former archbishop Desmond Tutu said in a statement read out by...
(APA 10/12/17)
APA-Johannesburg (South Africa) - The Competition Commission of South Africa has taken the South African Football Intermediaries Association (Safia) and 36 members of the body representing soccer agents to a tribunal in relation to alleged price-fixing in the sport. The commission referred the agents to the Competition Tribunal for prosecution following an investigation into their activities found that they were overcharging their clients by seven percent in defiance of a Fifa recommendation to charge only three percent. The body said...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
South Africa and Chad on Sunday signed an agreement that will see the re-introduction next year of critically endangered black rhino to the central African country, decades after it was last seen there. Environment ministers from the two countries signed a memorandum of understanding "which will allow for the translocation of six black rhino from South Africa to Chad," said a government statement. The last time a rhino was spotted in Chad was in 1972, according to official documents Chad...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is set to accelerate to 3.4 percent next year, the International Monetary Fund said Tuesday, citing Nigeria's recovering oil and agricultural sectors. The IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook report that the region would grow by 2.6 percent this year after 1.4 percent in 2016. "Growth is expected to rise gradually," it said, while noting that the rate would be uneven and "barely above population growth". GDP in the west African powerhouse Nigeria...

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(AFP (eng) 10/21/17)
The killing of four American special operations soldiers in Niger has highlighted the increasing role elite units are playing across Africa, which is rapidly becoming a major center of US military action. Their mission is to counter the advances of a slew of jihadist movements across the continent, including Al-Shabaab in Somalia, affiliates of the Islamic State group in the Sahel region and Boko Haram in Nigeria. Of the 8,000 special forces "operators" deployed globally this year, more than 1,300 are in Africa, according to officials from the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM), which is based in Tampa, Florida. Another 5,000 or so are in the Middle East. In five years, the number of US...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/20/17)
DAKAR (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The #MeToo social media campaign to raise awareness about sexual harassment and abuse has sparked conversation in parts of Africa where domestic violence is rampant but strong cultural and religious taboos prevent women from admitting it. Prompted by sexual abuse allegations against American film mogul Harvey Weinstein, millions of women around the world have been sharing their experiences of harassment and abuse on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #MeToo. The movement has reached only a small part of the population in West Africa, but some women are participating in defiance of attitudes which dictate that being abused brings shame on the family, is a curse, or makes a woman unmarriageable. In Senegal, some women...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/12/17)
ESTCOURT, South Africa (Reuters) - Police fired rubber bullets and stun grenades to break up crowds hurling insults at a group of men accused of cannibalism in a South African farming town. More than 500 people gathered outside the magistrates court in eastern Kwa-Zulu Natal province on Thursday as the men sat inside, hiding their faces with their hooded tops and their hands. Authorities originally charged seven men after police said one of them had walked into a police station...
(APA 10/12/17)
APA-Johannesburg (South Africa) - The South African city of Johannesburg has emerged as Africa’s most popular destination in 2016‚ followed by Cape Town‚ according to the annual Mastercard Global Destination Cities Index on Thursday. According to the survey, the commercial city of Johannesburg welcomed 4.57 million international overnight visitors in 2016 – a 24 percent increase on the previous year’s 3.69 million visitors. Another African city, Cape Town, rose from third place in 2015 to become the second most popular...
(The Associated Press 10/12/17)
An anti-apartheid activist who died in 1971 was tortured and killed by South African police, a court said Thursday, a landmark decision that raised hopes that dozens of similar cases would be investigated. The inquest into Ahmed Timol’s death had riveted South Africans as legal experts said it could set a precedent for examining similar deaths. “It is sad that it took so long,” Nobel Peace Prize winner and former archbishop Desmond Tutu said in a statement read out by...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
South Africa and Chad on Sunday signed an agreement that will see the re-introduction next year of critically endangered black rhino to the central African country, decades after it was last seen there. Environment ministers from the two countries signed a memorandum of understanding "which will allow for the translocation of six black rhino from South Africa to Chad," said a government statement. The last time a rhino was spotted in Chad was in 1972, according to official documents Chad...
(The Associated Press 10/10/17)
South Africa plans to send six black rhinos to a national park in Chad next year, restoring a critically endangered species that was last seen in the landlocked African country in the late 1980s. The non-profit group African Parks said Tuesday that the rhinos will go to Chad’s Zakouma National Park, which lies south of the Sahara desert and north of Central African rainforests. The group, which manages Zakouma and 10 other conservation areas in Africa, describes the Chad-bound rhinos...
(AFP (eng) 10/08/17)
For 40 years he has waited to discover the truth of how his son died at the hands of police during South Africa's apartheid era. Now the reopening of a similar case has given him hope that he may finally learn what really happened. In February 1977, Mabelane heard that a detainee had died in unusual circumstances. "I heard the news report that a detainee jumped from the 10th floor" of Johannesburg police headquarters, he told AFP, his back upright,...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Cape Town (South Africa) - A group of Russian businesspeople is in South Africa as part of the host government's efforts to boost businesses of black winemakers in the country, APA learnt on Wednesday. Fourteen black winemakers based in the Western Cape Province and another based in Eastern Cape Province are with the Russian delegation attending a four-day session organised by the Ministry of Trade and Industry in Cape Town, the office said. Deputy South African Trade and Industry Minister...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) - The African Union (AU) will on Thursday endorse reports and recommendations on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment (ARWE) made by experts and senior officials in a meeting held on Monday and Tuesday. The endorsement will take place during the ministerial session of the AU’s Specialized Technical Committee on ARWE that opened on Thursday in Addis Ababa under the theme “Improve environmental sustainability and transform agriculture to ensure food and nutrition security.” These include policy papers...
(AFP 10/04/17)
Eight female members of one family were shot dead in their homes in South Africa, police said Wednesday, with attackers also setting fire to the houses. Six of the victims were aged between three and 18, while two were older women. Police said the cause of the killings was unknown. The killings took place on Tuesday evening in Embangweni village, northwest of the port city of Durban, in the eastern province of KwaZulu-Natal. "It has been reported that the neighbours...
(AFP (eng) 10/03/17)
The parents of Reeva Steenkamp, the model shot dead by Oscar Pistorius, expressed outrage Monday over an upcoming US film about how the Paralympic athlete gunned down their daughter. June and Barry Steenkamp said they were "horrified and upset" at reports that the film claimed to tell the story of the 2013 killing from the perspective of Reeva and June, her mother. The Steenkamps stressed they had not collaborated in the project or knew anything about it being made, and...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/03/17)
CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - South Africa’s audit regulator will fast-track an investigation into global auditor KPMG over work done for business friends of President Jacob Zuma, the regulator’s chief executive told lawmakers on Tuesday. The Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors’ inquiry into KPMG follows an internal investigation in which the firm found work it did for companies owned by the Gupta family “fell considerably short” of the firm’s standards. The Guptas, a trio of businessmen accused by a watchdog of...
(AFP (eng) 09/30/17)
Eleven people were killed in a series of overnight shootings in a Cape Town township, police said Saturday, including four victims shot dead when gunmen opened fire in a bar. Extra police officers were deployed to the Philipi district of Cape Town, a city that suffers from regular gang violence and armed clashes between rival criminal groups. "We have deployed teams comprising specialist detectives, high-risk units and intelligence operatives," police spokeswoman Novela Potelwa told the News 24 website. "We already...
(AL Jazeera 09/28/17)
Trade union confederation says time has come for 'workers and citizens to stand up and push back against this rot'. Thousands of workers have taken to the streets in cities across South Africa to protest against government corruption, state capture and job losses. The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and the South African Communist Party (SACP), both in alliance with the ruling ANC, say the strike on Wednesday is largely against corruption, but the call to take to...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/27/17)
Thousands of South Africans will march on Wednesday against corruption under President Jacob Zuma’s rule, in protests led by unions which have backed a rival to the president’s faction as the next leader of the ANC. The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), which is in an alliance with the ruling African National Congress (ANC), has called on its more than one million members to strike and join marches in major cities across South Africa. Though the protests are...
(Xinhuanet 09/26/17)
South African Police Minister Fikile Mbalula vowed Tuesday to ensure safety of visitors after a group of Dutch tourists were reportedly robbed at gun point. Mbalula called the robbery, which occurred on Sunday night in Johannesburg, as "an attack on the tourism industry and the economy". "Tourism is part of our economic drivers and provider of jobs for the youth. We must work hard in protecting this industry," the minister said. The 36 tourists were traveling on a bus when...
(News24 09/26/17)
A deputy principal was shot and killed in his office on school premises in Duduza, Nigel, Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi tweeted on Tuesday. The circumstances surrounding the incident were not immediately clear. Education department spokesperson Steve Mabona said: "It is with great sadness to inform you of a Edalinceba Primary School (principal) in Duduza who was shot dead in his office at school at about 11am this morning. MEC Lesufi is on his way there." Gauteng police spokesperson Captain...
(Eye Witness News 09/26/17)
Cosatu’s Dumisani Dakile says all preparations have been made ahead of Wednesday’s demonstration. The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says its march on Wednesday is aimed at defending the interests of workers in the face of widespread looting and corruption. The federation has given an update on preparations ahead of the mass demonstration along with the SACP and Cosatu. Cosatu’s Dumisani Dakile says all preparations have been made ahead of Wednesday’s demonstration. “We’re more than ready, transport arrangement...
(Times Live 09/26/17)
Dozens of elderly Dutch tourists‚ who had just arrived at OR Tambo International Airport for a three-week holiday‚ were attacked by armed robbers posing as police. The 36 tourists‚ according to the Dutch newspaper Telegraaf‚ are all in their 70s. They were attacked on Sunday night near Fourways in the north of Johannesburg after the five suspects apparently followed them from the airport. The Telegraaf has described the tourists' "hell" at the hands of the robbers‚ who forced the bus...

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(AFP (eng) 10/19/17)
The South African government on Thursday removed the head of troubled state-owned airline South African Airways (SAA), which is deeply in debt and struggling to stay in the air. Chairwoman Dudu Myeni, a close ally of President Jacob Zuma, will be replaced by Johannes Bhekumuzi Magwaza, the finance ministry announced in a boardroom sweep-out. Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba "hopes that the new board... will implement the airline's structural strategy and bring it to financial stability," it said in a statement. The government was last month forced to bail out the loss-making carrier to avoid it defaulting on a 3 billion-rand ($221 million) loan, and refinancing of further debt is under negotiation.
(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
Rent-a-room giant Airbnb said Tuesday that it had provided accommodation for 1.2 million visitors to Africa over the last year -- double the previous year as tourism expands across the continent. The website now offers more than 100,000 accommodation options in Africa, global public affairs director Chris Lehane said on a visit to Johannesburg. "It's an incredibly rich and diverse continent, an incredibly dynamic place, certainly a big part of our future," Lehane told AFP. Airbnb was founded in 2008 and offers accommodation ranging from single bedrooms to whole homes in 65,000 cities in 191 countries. The company announced Tuesday that it would invest $1 million (850,000 euros) in Africa by 2020 to "promote and support community-led tourism projects". "For...
(APA 10/16/17)
APA-Dakar (Senegal) - The president of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, will deliver the Norman Borlaug Lecture on Monday 16 October as part of the World Food Prize events taking place from October 16 to 20, 2017 in Des Moines, Iowa, USA. The Norman Borlaug Lecture under the title: “Betting on Africa to Feed the World”, will be held on World Food Day, October 16, in conjunction with the annual World Food Prize celebration. AfDB President Adesina will receive...
(AFP (eng) 10/10/17)
Economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is set to accelerate to 3.4 percent next year, the International Monetary Fund said Tuesday, citing Nigeria's recovering oil and agricultural sectors. The IMF said in its latest World Economic Outlook report that the region would grow by 2.6 percent this year after 1.4 percent in 2016. "Growth is expected to rise gradually," it said, while noting that the rate would be uneven and "barely above population growth". GDP in the west African powerhouse Nigeria...
(APA 10/09/17)
APA-Pretoria (South Africa) - South Africa’s central bank on Monday refuted claims that it has instructed banks on what steps they should take against auditing firm KPMG, which has fallen from grace for its close working relations with the controversial Gupta family, APA has learnt. The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) said it “has not instructed banks on what steps they should or could not take with regards to their contracts with KPMG.” “As stated by SARB Governor Lesetja Kganyago in a statement issued at the Monetary Policy...
(APA 10/09/17)
APA-Pretoria (South Africa) - South Africa’s main power utility Eskom on Monday expressed concern at media reports on its newly-appointed interim group chief executive Sean Maritz, only days after his appointment. “We have noted with concern recent media reports with unsubstantiated allegations against Mr Maritz. We plead that he be given a chance to lead Eskom,” the power utility said. The media reports come after Eskom’s announcement on Friday that it had appointed Maritz to the top post. The Eskom Board announced that it has decided to rotate the current executives for this role to “ensure exposure” to the senior management. Maritz was the utility’s Chief Information Officer and Group Executive for Information...
(APA 10/09/17)
APA-Mbabane (Swaziland) - Swaziland has decreased the maximum amount of maize meal that individuals can purchase from South Africa from 100 kilograms to 20 kilograms per household, APA learns here on Monday. This, according of the Ministry of Agriculture, is a result of good maize harvest that the country enjoyed in the 2016/2017 season and also the heavy decline in maize prices realised in regional markets. The amount of maize meal that a household could purchase from neighbouring South Africa...
(Reuters 10/06/17)
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa’s finance minister ordered the government pension fund on Friday to investigate possible irregularities at the fund to help ally concerns that politicians are trying to “influence” it. The Public Investment Corporation (PIC), which holds a large chunk of government bonds and stakes in leading South African companies, has come under the public spotlight after reports that the finance ministry had requested 100 billion rand ($7 billion) from the fund to bail out struggling state firms...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - KPMG’s new chief executive in South Africa said on Thursday she would make sweeping changes to ensure the firm did not repeat “greatly disappointing” work it did for business friends of President Jacob Zuma. Nhlamu Dlomu, who took up the top job in South Africa after most of the local board was sacked last month, said an announcement would be made in the coming days about an independent inquiry into its work at firms owned by...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa’s mining lobby has rejected talks with the mining ministry over changes to the industry’s charter, which include raising targets for black ownership, saying the matter will have to be settled in court. “We are of the view that engaging with the minister directly is not going to achieve a set of results for the industry that is workable,” Roger Baxter, chief executive of the Chamber of Mines, told Reuters on the sidelines of a mining...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (HLT.N) plans to spend $50 million over the next five years to add 100 hotels to its chain in Africa, it said on Thursday, joining other chains keen to tap growing business and international travel on the continent. One property will open in the Kenyan capital Nairobi by the end of this year and another in the Rwandan capital Kigali in 2018, it said in a statement. There was 11 percent growth in...
(Bloomberg 10/04/17)
South Africa’s government is open to talks over the country’s much-criticized mining charter but the industry must do more to benefit the black majority, Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane said. The mining industry, represented by the Chamber of Mines, has rejected the government’s new rules, saying extra levies and black-economic empowerment requirements threaten to curb the appeal of investing in projects. A judicial review of the legislation is scheduled to be held in December, in which Zwane must justify the...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/29/17)
South Africa must sort out its political problems in order to kickstart structural reform and unlock economic growth, central bank governor Lesetja Kganyago told Reuters on Thursday. Speaking on the sidelines of a conference organised in London by the Bank of England, Kganyago also said financial market inflation expectations seemed to be out of kilter with reality. He added that he was happy with the South African Reserve Bank's independence following a flurry of criticism earlier this year. South Africa...
(Xinhuanet 09/29/17)
With South Africa's "strike season" in full swing, the Department of Labor on Thursday warned against frequent strikes that is harming both the economy and the labor force. In its latest Industrial Action Report, the department said the South African labor market lost a total of 946,323 working days as a result of 122 work stoppages last year. This represents a 4.7-percent increase in working days lost in 2016 as compared to 903,921 days in 2015, according to the report...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/29/17)
South Africa’s central bank has told top lenders they cannot fire auditor KPMG [KPMG.UL], entangled in a scandal involving friends of President Jacob Zuma, because it might undermine financial stability, two sources with knowledge of the matter said. KPMG sacked its South African leadership two weeks ago after it found work the accounting firm had done for companies owned by the Gupta family “fell considerably short” of its standards. KPMG has said it will ask a senior legal figure to...
(Eye Witness News 09/29/17)
Eskom has also confirmed that former acting CEO Matshela Koko's disciplinary hearing is scheduled to commence within the next two weeks. Almost 20 hours after Eyewitness News revealed that Eskom's chief financial officer Anoj Singh has been suspended, the utility has now finally confirmed the sanction. It released a statement a few minutes ago, saying Singh who was on special leave has now been suspended pending a disciplinary hearing. Eskom has also confirmed that former acting CEO Matshela Koko's disciplinary...
(AFP (eng) 09/29/17)
Government shutdowns of the internet have cost sub-Saharan Africa about $237 million since 2015, according to a study released Friday, as authorities increasingly implement planned disruptions. At least 12 countries have had internet shutdowns, often before elections or when protests erupt, with mobile internet networks most recently suspended in Togo during opposition demonstrations. "Internet disruptions, however short-lived, undermine economic growth, disrupt the delivery of critical services, erode business confidence, and raise a country’s risk profile," the CIPESA report said. The Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) released its...
(Financial Times 09/28/17)
Cosatu backs Ramaphosa to succeed the president as ANC leader. South Africa’s biggest trade union federation brought thousands of workers on to the streets of cities to protest against corruption under President Jacob Zuma, and demand that Cyril Ramaphosa, the deputy president, replace him. Wednesday’s national strike, organised by Cosatu, which has 1.7m members, and the South African Communist party, took place in Johannesburg, Cape Town and other big cities across the country. That the protest was even called for...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/28/17)
South Africa’s economic growth will be significantly hampered by increasing political uncertainty in the run-up to the ruling African National Congress’s leadership contest in December, Fitch said on Thursday. In a report released by its BMI research arm, Fitch said a turn to more “radical rhetoric and policy positions by the traditionalist wing of the party” would weigh on investor confidence. “Mining and manufacturing activity are likely to be hit especially hard by the political challenges, as the elevated policy...
(Bloomberg 09/28/17)
South Africa’s notoriously volatile rand has been sailing into calmer waters in recent months, with price swings narrowing to the lowest level in almost three years. That’s about to change, options pricing suggests. The rand’s three-month implied volatility against the dollar has soared relative to actual fluctuations as the ruling African National Congress’s leadership contest approaches, suggesting traders are paying up for protection ahead of an event that may introduce two-way risks for the currency. The ANC, which has ruled...

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(APA 10/12/17)
APA-Johannesburg (South Africa) - The Competition Commission of South Africa has taken the South African Football Intermediaries Association (Safia) and 36 members of the body representing soccer agents to a tribunal in relation to alleged price-fixing in the sport. The commission referred the agents to the Competition Tribunal for prosecution following an investigation into their activities found that they were overcharging their clients by seven percent in defiance of a Fifa recommendation to charge only three percent. The body said that its investigation had indeed revealed that, among other things, “Safia and its members agreed to charge soccer players and coaches a standard 10 percent commission fee when negotiating and concluding new contracts‚ transfer contracts‚...
(AFP 10/06/17)
South Africa's new Global T20 league will go ahead, Cricket South Africa pledged on Friday, but it is expected to lose money for the first two seasons. No broadcast deal has yet been signed but CSA vice-president and acting chief executive Thabang Moroe said negotiations were well-advanced. "It is just a matter of agreeing the finer details," he said. Moroe said a deal in the region of US $70-80 million (60 million euros-68 million euros) was being sought, but admitted that CSA was expecting a net loss of about $25 million, while franchise owners would lose about $1.5 million in the first season. Moroe and CSA president Chris Nenzani briefed reporters for the first time since last week's announcement of...
(AFP 10/05/17)
La Nouvelle-Zélande, déjà assurée de conserver son titre dans le Rugby Championship, va malgré tout aligner sa meilleure équipe pour la dernière journée, samedi au Cap contre l'Afrique du Sud. Ainsi, les cinq joueurs qui avaient été ménagés la semaine passée contre l'Argentine (victoire 36-10) ont été rappelés, et le sélectionneur Steve Hansen devra juste se passer de Brodie Retallick, retourné auprès des siens en raison de problèmes familiaux. Hansen a souligné que même déjà titrés, les All Blacks ne...
(AFP (eng) 09/30/17)
The 2018 World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Senegal will be replayed on either November 8 or November 9, the Senegalese Football Federation (FSF) said on Friday. The FSF said FIFA had decided on the possible dates for the rearranged game, with the initial 2-1 South Africa victory on November 12, 2016 having been chalked off after the match was manipulated by referee Joseph Lamptey. The Ghanaian awarded South Africa a controversial penalty in the original Group D encounter...
(Times Live 09/26/17)
There will be a familiar look about the Burkina Faso squad for next weekend’s Fifa World Cup qualifier against South Africa at FNB Stadium with a 24-man squad chosen‚ packed with regulars who have already had considerable experience against Bafana Bafana. The likes of Aristide Bance‚ Charles Kabore‚ Bakary Kone and the Traore brothers Alain and Bertrand are among those making the trip for the match on Saturday‚ October 7‚ But Jonathan Pitroipa will not make the trip to SA...
(AFP (eng) 09/21/17)
India will play three Test matches in South Africa this season, the boards of both countries announced on Wednesday. The first Test will start in Cape Town on January 5 while details of the remaining two Tests as well as six one-day internationals and three Twenty20 internationals will be announced later. South Africa will also stage its first day-night Test, planned as a four-day match against Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth from December 26 to 29. Wednesday's announcement followed negotiations which...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/12/17)
Olympic boxing’s governing body, AIBA, has banned African confederation head Kelani Bayor for three years for allegedly provoking the crowd at the continental championships in Brazzaville last June. Bayor is an AIBA vice-president and executive committee member as well as chairman of Togo’s national Olympic committee. “The Disciplinary Commission found that a hostile and threatening reaction to AIBA officials by spectators after the result of a bout on the last day of the competition was exacerbated by comments from Mr...
(Times Live 09/08/17)
The Free State Cheetahs will somehow have to stem the bleeding with a callow team when they take on Western Province at Newlands in a Currie Cup match on Saturday. The Cheetahs come into the match on the back of 45-15 loss against the Sharks last weekend and nothing suggests that their squad‚ staffed mainly by Varsity Cup players‚ will be able to live with WP. The Cape side have a vastly experience unit filled with Super Rugby players and...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/07/17)
FIFA has ordered the World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Senegal, played in November 2016, to be replayed after the referee was banned for life. FIFA said in March that Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey had been banned for life after they found him guilty of unlawfully influencing a match result following South Africa’s 2-1 win over Senegal in African Group D. FIFA did not give further details but African soccer’s governing body (CAF) said at the time that Lamptey...
(AFP (eng) 09/02/17)
Nigeria hammered African champions Cameroon Friday to virtually seal a 2018 World Cup place, but Ghana drew and South Africa lost to suffer serious qualifying setbacks. Current and former Chelsea midfielders Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel scored one goal and created another as Nigeria overwhelmed Cameroon 4-0 in southeast city Uyo. A late strike from Thomas Partey of Atletico Madrid salvaged a 1-1 home draw for lacklustre Ghana against Congo Brazzaville in Kumasi. Russia-based Nuno Rocha broke the hearts...
(Times Live 08/30/17)
Eyebrows were raised after former Bafana Bafana coach Ephraim “Shakes” Mashaba declared his loyal and passionate support for the national team ahead of Friday's away 2018 World Cup qualifier against Cape Verde. Mashaba was at the helm when the World Cup qualification programme began last year but the burly mentor was suspended after a heated altercation with South African Football Association (Safa) officials in November last year and was later fired. He was sacked for “gross misconduct‚ insubordination and violating...
(Times Live 08/29/17)
Bafana Bafana will have Sports Minister Thembelani “Thulas” Nxesi in their corner when they face Cape Verde in a must-win 2018 World Cup qualifier in Praia on Friday night. Coach Stuart Baxter's charges were expected to depart for Cape Verde on Tuesday morning and Nxesi said it was important for government to support Bafana‚ given the magnitude of the match. “The national team needs all the arsenal and the boost they can get to ensure that they go over this...
(News24 08/23/17)
A wide range of allegations of maladministration at the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) will be the subject of a ministerial committee of inquiry, Sports Minister Thulas Nxesi announced on Wednesday. This comes amid fears that the ructions at Sascoc could affect Team SA's preparation for next year's Commonwealth Games. Nxesi also announced a ministerial committee of inquiry into last month's tragedy at the FNB Stadium, in which two football fans died from injuries sustained during a...
(AFP (eng) 08/16/17)
Jailed South African Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius briefly left his Pretoria prison on Wednesday to attend his grandmother's funeral. "He left in the morning under supervision of our officials and by 20-minutes-past-one he was back at the facility," Correctional Services spokesman Singabakho Nxumalo told AFP. He was driven from Atteridgeville prison in Pretoria after he had been granted permission to bury his maternal grandmother‚ Joyce Bekker, who according to local media, died last week aged 93. The funeral took place...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/11/17)
Olympic champion Caster Semenya maintained her two-year unbeaten record over 800 meters as she eased through the first round at the World Championships on Thursday. Her main challengers, Francine Niyonsaba, Margaret Wambui and Ajee Wilson, also cruised into Friday's semi-finals but defending champion Maryna Arzamasova was eliminated after finishing fourth in her heat. South African Semenya, last beaten at the World Championships semi-final in Beijing two years ago, was third going into the final straight and eased past Rose Mary...
(Times Live 08/10/17)
Oupa Manyisa may be a shadow of the player he was at the peak of his powers but Mamelodi Sundowns captain Hlompho Kekana expects their recent acquisition to regain his bearings in his new surroundings and fire from all cylinders again. The 29-year-old Manyisa‚ who joined the Brazillians on a three-year deal last week‚ joined his new teammates on the last day of their mini pre-season camp at the Royal Marang Hotel in Rustenburg on Saturday morning and Kekana says...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/09/17)
Wayde van Niekerk retained his world 400 meters title in dominant fashion on Tuesday as he stormed to victory in 43.98 seconds but there was almost as much interest in the empty lane alongside him where Botswana's Isaac Makwala should have been. South African Van Niekerk, the Olympic and defending champion and world record holder, ran a controlled race and was even able to ease down over the final strides as he secured the first half of what he hopes...
(AFP (eng) 08/08/17)
South African Caster Semenya, dogged by gender accusations since shooting to fame in 2009, has played down efforts by track and field's governing body to change rules on naturally occurring testosterone in female athletes. Semenya is back in the spotlight following a study funded by the IAAF and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) that showed female athletes with naturally high levels of testosterone enjoy a competitive advantage of up to 4.5 percent over their rivals. The 26-year-old South African, double...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/08/17)
Tuesday's action at the World Athletics Championships sees two of the most intriguing races of the program as South Africa's Wayde van Niekerk bids for the first half of his 400/200 meters double and Nigel Amos goes for gold in the men's 800m. World record holder and defending champion Van Niekerk should be unbeatable in the 400m but faces a stiff challenge, not least from Botswanan duo Isaac Makwala and Thebe Baboloki. Another Botswanan, Amos, will also have to be...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/03/17)
Andre De Grasse's withdrawal through injury has only boosted the chances of Usain Bolt and Wayde Van Niekerk stamping themselves as the headline acts of the World Athletics Championships that start in London on Friday. The news that the exciting young Canadian had succumbed to a season-ending hamstring strain in training on Monday gives a very different complexion to the 100 and 200 meters, in which he was expected to offer perhaps the biggest threat to the duo. In the...

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(AFP (eng) 10/18/17)
The sequel to Nelson Mandela's celebrated autobiography "Long Walk to Freedom" will be released on Thursday after his unfinished draft was completed by a South African writer, his foundation announced. Titled "Dare not Linger", the book tells of Mandela's five years as president after the end of apartheid and the first multi-race elections in South Africa in 1994. "Long Walk to Freedom", published shortly after the election, was a global best-seller, selling more than 14 million copies, and was turned into a film starring Idris Elba. Mandela wrote 10 chapters of his follow-up memoir by hand on loose paper and in files between 1998 and 2002, when he stopped working on it due to his...
(AFP (eng) 10/03/17)
The family of jailed Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius said Tuesday that it would pursue legal action over a coming US film about his murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. In a statement, the Pistorius family said neither it nor the Steenkamps were consulted about the film, "Blade Runner Killer", which is set to premiere on the Lifetime network in the US on November 11. The athlete's family criticised the project for not being a "true reflection" of the shooting nor of Pistorius's marathon trial which gripped the world. "The 'film' is a gross misrepresentation of the truth," the family said in a statement. "We will be taking legal action." Pistorius, 30, is serving a six-year prison term for killing Steenkamp...
(Xinhuanet 09/13/17)
In an effort to promote economic development and solve complex conservation challenges facing world heritage sites, the African World Heritage Fund Patron and former President of Namibia Hifikepunye Pohamba will host a business leader's breakfast event in Namibian Capital, Windhoek on Thursday. The African World Heritage Fund is an initiative of the African Member States of the African Union and UNESCO, launched in 2006. Webber Ndoro, executive director of the African World Heritage Fund, at a media briefing on Tuesday...
(The Citizen 08/25/17)
The unit will also investigate staff members who have undisclosed or unauthorised interests in companies that have done business with the public broadcaster. President Jacob Zuma has given the greenlight for the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to investigate any wrongdoing at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), his office said on Friday. The proclamation, signed by Zuma, gives the SIU the authority to investigate irregularities and criminality relating to the procurement of “goods, works or services or on behalf of...
(AFP (eng) 08/10/17)
The skull of an infant ape buried by a volcano 13 million years ago has preserved intriguing clues about the ancestor humans shared with apes -- including a likely African origin, scientists said Wednesday. A previously-unknown creature that shared an extended family with the human forefather, had a flat face like that of our far-flung cousin the gibbon, but did not move like one, its discoverers wrote in the journal Nature. They named it Nyanzapithecus alesi after "ales" -- the...
(Voice of America 08/01/17)
South Africa entered an economic recession in June, and the country’s unemployment rate is fast approaching 30 percent, according to the government statistics agency. But for the sellers of secondhand books, business has never been better. Eric Nofal, who has been selling used books for almost 30 years, shows a customer around his store in Johannesburg. He says he recently faced “intense” competition before launching his fifth bookshop in the city. “My ex-wife also wanted to open up a shop...
(The Associated Press 07/11/17)
Africa has several new sites on the United Nations world heritage list, including an old royal capital in Angola, the Eritrean capital of Asmara and a desert area in South Africa that was inhabited during the Stone Age. UNESCO said this weekend at a meeting in Poland that Mbanza Kongo in northwest Angola was the capital of the Kongo kingdom, a largely independent state between the 14th and 19th centuries. The U.N. cultural agency says Asmara, which experienced large-scale construction...
(Xinhuanet 06/01/17)
China-South Africa relations are expected to be lifted to new heights with increasing cultural and people-to-people exchanges between the two BRICS countries. Lucas Banda, an international relations expert at the Midrand University, cited the tourism sector as a highlight of the trend. "Chinese arrivals were up 93 percent in 2016," Banda told Xinhua. Chinese tourists to South Africa increased by 56 percent during the period from January to October in 2016 compared to a year earlier, showed data from South...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/26/17)
The exhibit coincides with the publication of a controversial paper that questions the widely-held view that humanity’s evolutionary roots lay in Africa. An exhibit of the largest collection of fossils of close human relatives ever to go on public display opened on Thursday in South Africa, not far from the caves where they were unearthed. Launched on Africa Day in an area named “The Cradle of Humankind,” the exhibit coincides with the publication of a controversial paper that questions the...
(AFP (eng) 05/26/17)
Entertainment | France | film | festival | Cannes | Zambia | witchcraft Cannes, France | AFP | Friday 5/26/2017 - 14:01 UTC+3 | 615 words by Katy Lee Being accused of witchcraft is no laughing matter in Africa -- but movie director Rungano Nyoni decided a dose of humour was just what was needed to tackle a problem rampant in parts of the continent. Set in Zambia, the sharp satire "I Am Not A Witch" has premiered to strong...
(Business Day 05/10/17)
The SABC wants the Broadcasting Act to be changed so that those watching TV via electronic devices can be charged a TV licence fee. The shock proposal was made by acting CEO James Aguma in Parliament on Wednesday while presenting a corporate plan for the 2017-18 financial year to the portfolio committee on communications. The cash-strapped SABC is scrambling to find new revenue streams amid plummeting audience rates that are repelling advertisers who used to spend hundreds of million of...
(AFP (eng) 05/04/17)
South African visual artist William Kentridge, best known for his animated films of shape-shifting charcoal drawings, won on Thursday Spain's top arts prize, the Princess of Asturias award. The prize jury hailed Kentridge, 62, as "one of the most multifaceted innovative artists on the international scene" in its citation for the 50,000 euros ($57,000) award. His work "has expressed emotions and metaphors related to the history and reality of his country which nonetheless transcend the latter and raise essential questions regarding the human condition," it added. Born in Johannesburg in 1955, Kentridge's parents were both lawyers specialised in defending the victims of the apartheid white minority rule in South Africa.
(AFP (eng) 04/21/17)
A painting by a South African artist showing President Jacob Zuma raping the late Nelson Mandela has caused outrage in the country, with the ruling party Friday describing it as "grotesque". The piece by controversial artist Ayanda Mabulu shows Zuma seated on a red chair, penetrating a crying Mandela. Both men have their legs wide apart, exposing their genitals. The African National Congress and the Nelson Mandela Foundation have condemned the colourful artwork titled: "The economy of rape". "Whilst we respect Mabulu's freedom of expression, we find his work grotesque, inflammatory and of bad taste,"
(Xinhuanet 04/18/17)
Africa's diaspora is playing a big role in the economic transformation of the continent, the UN said on Tuesday. UN Population Fund (UNFPA) Regional Director Dr Julitta Onabanjo told Xinhua in Nairobi that remittances are important source of income for many African families. "The diaspora therefore complements government efforts to lift many families out of poverty," Onabanjo said on the sidelines of the First Africa-China Conference on Population and Development. Onabanjo said that Africans in the diaspora also bring back...
(Voice of America 03/18/17)
About two years ago, blues-folk artist Alice Phoebe Lou gave a performance in a park in Berlin, looking for donations as a street entertainer. A listener invited her to perform at a function. Her career has since taken off. Last year, she released her debut record, and on Wednesday she played one of the world's premier music festivals: the South by Southwest event in Texas. Lou is just one of a growing list of South African musicians who've felt compelled...
(Bloomberg 03/16/17)
Portia Lekgoto faced a dilemma: how to take her three-year-old daughter to a doctor without missing a day of work while waiting in line at one of only two public health clinics in the South African shantytown of Diepsloot. She decided to take her daughter to Quali Health, a new private clinic that a friend had told her about. While she had to pay 250 rand ($19) for the visit, she finished the consultation by mid-morning. “I am going to...
(AFP (eng) 03/14/17)
Esther Mahlangu's colourful geometric artwork is exhibited in galleries around the world, but she remains in her South African village unfazed by fame and determined to preserve her ethnic Ndebele culture. The 81-year-old painter and mural artist earned an international reputation with her Ndebele motifs at a time when the art scene in her home country was focused on contemporary styles. Now Johannesburg is hosting a major exhibition for Mahlangu, an elderly black woman with no art training who rose...
(AFP (eng) 03/07/17)
A jury in Warsaw on Monday named South African writer and anti-apartheid activist Breyten Breytenbach as the recipient of the 2017 Zbigniew Herbert International Literary Award, named after the anti-communist Polish poet and philosopher. "I'm pleased that this year the jury has chosen a poet who combines great talent with the attitude of an uncompromising man who sides with the oppressed," said Katarzyna Herbert, the widow of the poet who died in 1998, as she announced the winner. Born in...
(AFP (eng) 03/02/17)
A film raging against colonialism and the exploitation of Africa wowed viewers at the continent's top cinema festival Wednesday, winning shouts of approval at a screening packed to bursting point. "The African Storm" tells the story of an African president who nationalises businesses run by racist, cynical Western executives. Directed and produced by its Beninese star Sylvestre Amoussou, it tackles several hot-button issues including an exit from the CFA franc currency, closer ties with Russia and China as opposed to...
(News24 02/27/17)
Thirty tons of school books collected in Bedfordview and meant for distribution to schools in Zimbabwe are stuck at Beitbridge Border Post because the state revenue authority is demanding tax, reports say. The official Herald newspaper says the books were destined for 11 schools in Bulawayo, near where President Robert Mugabe will hold his birthday party on Saturday. The book shipment was organised by Chitungwiza Rotary Club, which says it's been doing this without problems since 2011. Past president of...

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(Bloomberg 10/04/17)
South Africa’s government is open to talks over the country’s much-criticized mining charter but the industry must do more to benefit the black majority, Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane said. The mining industry, represented by the Chamber of Mines, has rejected the government’s new rules, saying extra levies and black-economic empowerment requirements threaten to curb the appeal of investing in projects. A judicial review of the legislation is scheduled to be held in December, in which Zwane must justify the new measures to a bench of judges. The charter, which was published in the Government Gazette in June, is “a living document that’s the subject of the court,” Zwane said in a speech in Johannesburg...
(Financial Times 09/28/17)
Cosatu backs Ramaphosa to succeed the president as ANC leader. South Africa’s biggest trade union federation brought thousands of workers on to the streets of cities to protest against corruption under President Jacob Zuma, and demand that Cyril Ramaphosa, the deputy president, replace him. Wednesday’s national strike, organised by Cosatu, which has 1.7m members, and the South African Communist party, took place in Johannesburg, Cape Town and other big cities across the country. That the protest was even called for reveals the deep fractures within the ruling African National Congress over Mr Zuma’s scandal-hit leadership — including his ties to the Gupta business family — as Cosatu and the Communist party are part of the ruling African National Congress alliance...
(Bloomberg 09/28/17)
As the battle to succeed South African President Jacob Zuma as leader of the African National Congress grows increasingly fractious, party Treasurer-General Zweli Mkhize is emerging as a possible compromise choice to keep the continent’s oldest political movement from tearing itself apart. While the race for the top job is widely seen as a head-to-head contest between Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the president’s ex-wife and former chairwoman of the African Union Commission, Mkhize, a 61-year-old medical doctor, has two advantages: he’s stayed above the infighting and has strong support in his home region of KwaZulu-Natal, which has the most ANC members of the nation’s nine provinces.
(Bloomberg 09/28/17)
South Africa’s potential bailout of the state-owned airline could place pressure on the nation’s finances because other government-run companies that are cash-strapped and mismanaged may come to expect the same, Moody’s Investors Service said. “It generates moral hazards because then larger state-owned enterprises see it and there perhaps will be the perception that the government will always come and bail out, without reforms,” Zuzana Brixiova, Moody’s senior vice president for sovereign risk and its lead analyst for South Africa, said...
(AL Jazeera 09/28/17)
Trade union confederation says time has come for 'workers and citizens to stand up and push back against this rot'. Thousands of workers have taken to the streets in cities across South Africa to protest against government corruption, state capture and job losses. The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and the South African Communist Party (SACP), both in alliance with the ruling ANC, say the strike on Wednesday is largely against corruption, but the call to take to...
(Bloomberg 09/27/17)
South African Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba said he won’t ask Africa’s biggest money manager to provide funds to bail out state-owned companies that will put the pensions of government workers at risk. “There is no attempt to dip into pensions for reasons that are unscrupulous,” Gigaba told reporters in Pretoria on Tuesday after a meeting with the board of the Public Investment Corp. The event was scheduled after media reports said that the National Treasury is seeking to use PIC...
(Bloomberg 09/27/17)
South Africa’s biggest labor organization urged workers to strike on Wednesday to protest against what it called “the cancer of corruption” spreading among business and government leaders and threatening the nation’s democracy under President Jacob Zuma. The action is the boldest step yet by the Congress of South African Trade Unions to pile pressure on Zuma, whom it helped to win control of the ruling African National Congress in 2007 and then turned against after he fired Pravin Gordhan as...
(Bloomberg 09/27/17)
The South African High Court in Pretoria has restricted access to 1.75 billion rand ($130 million) in rehabilitation-trust accounts for two mines owned by companies linked to the politically connected Gupta family, according to The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse, a civic action group. The interim order directs India’s Bank of Baroda to continue to hold the trust funds of the Optimum and Koornfontein coal mines in accounts in the trusts’ names, the group said in an emailed statement Tuesday. The...
(Bloomberg 09/27/17)
Studio 189, a label founded by actress Rosario Dawson and fashion executive Abrima Erwiah, is reinvesting in its African roots. It’s hard enough to build a fashion brand, let alone an empire. Rare is the person who makes a mission of using fashion to build communities. Such is the case with Studio 189, a label founded by longtime friends Abrima Erwiah (formerly a marketing executive at Bottega Veneta) and Rosario Dawson (an enduring star most recently seen in Netflix’s Marvel...
(Bloomberg 09/26/17)
David Mabuza, premier of South Africa’s Mpumalanga province, said the ruling African National Congress needs to coalesce around a unifying candidate at a December conference where leaders will be elected to end infighting that is damaging the party. Factions backing Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the former head of the African Union and an ex-wife of South African President Jacob Zuma, and Cyril Ramaphosa, the country’s deputy president, are “far apart,” Mabuza said on Monday on The Justice Factor, a program screened by...
(Voice of America 09/25/17)
African first ladies and activists hailed progress that some governments on the continent are making on gender equality. They met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. “We used to have 23 percent female representation in parliament but, with the stroke of a pen it went up to 48 percent. So, we managed to double our female representation with that decision,” said Namibia’s first lady Monica Geingos at a roundtable invitation-only event co-hosted by the...
(Financial Times 09/23/17)
Government departments told to examine relationships with firm after political scandal. South Africa’s finance minister has told all government departments to review their relationship with KPMG in response to the accounting firm’s role in a political scandal over links between the Gupta family and President Jacob Zuma. In a statement published yesterday, South African finance minister Malusi Gigaba, who was appointed in March, said he had “deep concerns about audit matters currently surrounding KPMG”. “These developments further threaten to undermine...
(Bloomberg 09/23/17)
South Africa’s Treasury is pressuring the continent’s biggest money manager to provide as much as 100 billion rand ($7.6 billion) to fund struggling state companies, according to two people with knowledge of the situation. The Public Investment Corp., which manages state-employee pension funds and has about 1.86 trillion rand in assets, has been asked by the Treasury to buy its entire 12-billion-rand stake in Telkom SA SOC Ltd. to pay for a bailout of South African Airways, said the people,...
(Bloomberg 09/23/17)
Much of the focus around Indian mining tycoon Anil Agarwal’s pursuit of Anglo American Plc has been the company’s South African operations. But Botswana could be similarly important. Botswana is the source of about two-thirds of Anglo’s diamonds and the country is a major stakeholder in De Beers, the world’s biggest gem producer. There are few countries as dependent on a single commodity as Botswana is with diamonds and the nation is highly protective of the industry. So far Botswana...
(Bloomberg 09/22/17)
South African Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown has instructed Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. to begin legal action against companies including McKinsey & Co. over their involvement in disputed contracts at the country’s state-owned electricity company. Brown ordered Eskom to start taking legal steps against consultancy firms McKinsey and Trillian Capital Partners Ltd., as well as suspended acting Chief Executive Officer Matshela Koko and Chief Financial Officer Anoj Singh, who is on special leave, her spokesman, Colin Cruywagen, said by phone...
(Bloomberg 09/22/17)
Africa’s biggest fund manager may be dumped by a labor federation representing 230,000 South African state workers because it’s concerned that the funds of its members may be used to bail out mismanaged state-owned companies. The Federation of Unions of South Africa, the country’s second-largest labor union grouping, is considering replacing the state-owned Public Investment Corp. with privately owned fund managers to oversee the pension funds of the state workers, including nurses and teachers, that it represents. “There is nothing...
(Bloomberg 09/22/17)
Companies controlled by the Guptas lost a court bid to prevent Bank of Baroda from shutting their accounts, which would leave the politically connected family without banking services in South Africa from the end of this month. Judge Hans Fabricius dismissed the application of 20 companies linked to the Gupta family and awarded costs against them at the Pretoria High Court on Thursday. The Bank of Baroda was the family’s last hope after a series of lenders, including South Africa’s...
(Bloomberg 09/22/17)
With its surprise decision to leave rates on hold on Thursday, South Africa’s central bank may have shut its policy-easing window. Forward-rate agreements, which had been pricing in a 25 basis-point reduction in the benchmark rate this year, now suggest the South African Reserve Bank will be forced to stay put as central banks around the world move toward tighter policy. The rate on contracts starting in three months jumped 19 basis points, moving to within 10 points from the...
(Bloomberg 09/21/17)
The top leadership of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress starts meeting on Friday in a bid to heal a bitter split in the key region of KwaZulu-Natal that could derail its plans to elect a successor to President Jacob Zuma as party leader in December. The three-day meeting comes after the High Court annulled the election of Zuma allies as the province’s party leadership because the conference that chose them wasn’t lawfully convened. While the officials who lost the...
(Financial Times 09/20/17)
Consumer price growth in South Africa picked up in August after striking its lowest level since 2015 in the previous month, underscoring the complex situation for the country’s central bank as it looks to bolster economic output but ease inflation. The consumer price index rose 4.8 per cent in August from the previous year, up from 4.6 per cent in July, according to official statistics. Economists had forecast a reading of 4.9 per cent. Africa’s most industrialised economy emerged from...

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