This past weekend saw a number of luminaries gather in the Drakensberg on invitation of the former president, Kgalema Motlanthe, through his Foundation. The purpose of the forum aptly named, “The Drakensberg Inclusive Growth Forum” was to begin a dialogue concerning the most pertinent matters faced by our country. The gathering was graced by the current president of the country, Cyril Ramaphosa, who in his keynote address, told the delegates that they must dream of a shared future in Mzansi.
Identity politics are coming out of slumber, and perhaps this is a good thing. In recent weeks a number of incidents have pushed questions about identity to the centre of our debates. There are two incidents that raised temperatures in the popular media. In one, Tinyiko Ngwenya, a black woman and a chartered accountant, narrated her unpleasant experience of living and working in Cape Town, pointing to how despite the fact that we live in a democratic country she continued to be treated as if she were a minority in her own country.
When Jacob Zuma replaced Thabo Mbeki as president of the ANC – and later the country – he was not faced with much opposition within the party after the formation of the breakaway Cope party. Ramaphosa has to negotiate very different waters after almost a decade of Zuma's reign.
The Western Cape will be hotly contested in next year’s general elections, and while the DA is actively adapting to our country’s changing political landscape and the changing needs of our people, the ANC remains the sluggish, corruption fuelled vehicle of incompetence it always was.
Amid all the noise around the DA’s attempts to unseat Patricia de Lille as mayor of Cape Town, there has been less attention paid to what has been happening in other DA-led municipalities. But here’s a startling fact: one-fifth of all DA mayors in the Western Cape have lost the confidence of their caucuses over the last year. While the DA might want to point to this as evidence of accountability in action, another perspective might be that the party has a problem with the calibre of its leaders.
How widespread is support by South African Australians for the initiative to give special status to white South African farmers? Has the Afriforum vision of South Africa become the hegemonic one among South African migrants in Australia? I suspect a great many (most?) South African Australians do not support Australian home affairs minister Peter Dutton’s call. It is certainly not being done in my name.
OP-ED: South Africa and the ICC: Dismantling the international criminal justice system to protect one individual?
The introduction of the International Crimes Bill before the portfolio committee on justice and correctional services, two weeks ago, signals steadfast resolve to eventually withdraw from the Rome Statute. Is South Africa dismantling its own international criminal justice framework for one man who they will, despite withdrawal, still be legally obligated to arrest and surrender for as long as he remains wanted by the International Criminal Court?
Encounters, the South African International Documentary Festival, faced a financing deficit that would have discontinued it as an “essential fixture” in the South African film landscape. However, civil society came to the rescue of this important cultural event.
The DRC presidential candidate has been in South Africa to urge Pretoria to ensure the December elections are free and fair. Felix Tshisekedi thinks he could be “the saviour of the Congo.” But he also says he is prepared to stand down for another opposition candidate in the December 23 2018 elections, if that will serve his country better.
After missing a previous meeting about housing for former residents of District Six, officials from the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform finally gave an update on the status of land claims and it emerged that many claimants are still seeking to return to the site from which they were removed.
The triumph of history: Jeremy Veary – activist, teacher, gang-buster, top cop with the heart of a poet
There is a generation of South Africans, now in their 40s and 50s, who cut their political teeth in the mean and violent streets of Cape Town during the final years of white minority rule in the 1980s. Current WC Deputy Commissioner of Detectives Jeremy Veary was one of those young people whose lives were inexorably bound to the Struggle and who also spent time incarcerated on Robben Island. With the heart of a solider and the soul of a poet, Veary has just delivered his memoir, “Jeremy Vannie Elsies”, an account of a life rich with resistance, poetry, politics and revolution.
Five US states are refusing to deploy National Guard troops to the US-Mexico border amid a growing outcry over a controversial immigration policy of President Donald Trump's administration that has led to migrant children being separated from their parents.