Hours before the Super Bowl, President Donald Trump said he would allow his young son to play football if he wanted to but wouldn’t encourage it because “it’s a dangerous sport,” and defended his criticism of NFL players kneeling during the national anthem.
The South African media is routinely criticised for giving political kooks, nut jobs and racists a ‘platform’, as if we’re bar mitzvah DJs that must honour requests for ‘Candle in the Wind’ at the appropriate emotional cues. But South Africa’s social and political health can no longer be determined by examining the ANC, the DA or the EFF, which are empty vessels. The future, if you’re looking for it, is on the edges.
INVESTMENT PUZZLE: Investor countries’ June 2018 memo to Pretoria sparks February 2019 diplomatic incident
Five of the largest countries investing in South Africa informed Pretoria – in June 2018 – that President Cyril Ramaphosa’s investment drive could suffer if it didn’t apply government policies more consistently and enforce the rule of law more strictly. The memo, or discussion paper, was a basis for discussion with one of Ramaphosa’s special investment envoys, former Standard Bank CEO Jaco Maree.
As Africa’s population doubles over the next generation to more than 2-billion people, might industrial parks – free trade zones by another name – offer some answer to the jobs that will be necessary? Ethiopia, where this writer has been researching the subject, offers some pointers.
ANALYSIS: SONA Then & Now: The 2019 edition tipped to be a working one targeting renewal, inclusive growth
Politically, this SONA President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers just before elections is no less important than the one after the poll. And it might just be more important, if this get-down-to-work attitude is to signal broader and concrete changes.
TRUMP’S FORK IN THE ROAD: The Donald prepares for his State of the Union Speech – the world holds its breath, sort of
On Tuesday 5 February, Donald Trump will deliver his next State of the Union Speech, the one he wasn’t allowed to give, by order of Nancy Pelosi, during the partial government shutdown. And now he will – but what in the world will he say?
How long does it take the criminal justice system to finalise a rhino poaching trial, especially when a suspect is allegedly caught red-handed? A year. Two years. Perhaps a little longer? Well, in the case of Muntugokwakhe Khoza, the answer is almost 10 years... and counting.
Most of the election promises made by Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema were taken straight from the wish lists of his many disaffected supporters, but he ended his speech on an unusually counter-populist note. On foreign policy, his party’s manifesto goes against the grain.
Before the end of the 2018/19 tax year (28 February), anyone who invests the equivalent of their annual salary in an approved fund to support start-ups will get all their tax refunded. This means you can invest in what South Africa needs most — growth and jobs — while ensuring that none of your hard-earned money goes to fund criminals.
On Thursday evening President Ramaphosa will deliver the annual State of the Nation Address and face a cynical country weary of corruption and outrageous allegations of State Capture, which have been a steady if unpleasant daily diet for us all.
After firing rubber bullets and using stun grenades at the Cape Town Civic Centre against a group of peaceful protesters, including women with babies on their backs, SAPS officers arrested General Secretary of the Social Justice Coalition Axolile Notywala. He says they handcuffed him and slapped him until he knelt on the floor of a police minibus before they took him to Cape Town Central police station. This is his story.
EFF supporters who travelled to the Giant Stadium in Soshanguve on Saturday – for the five-year-old party’s 2019 election manifesto launch – were forgiving about the recent alleged transgressions of the party’s leadership. They focused instead on the EFFs ability to ‘talk to the heart’ and give them hope.
The CPI rating must mean and spur many things for South Africa, including putting in place as a corrective response a concerted, comprehensive and holistic approach to combating the spate of corruption engulfing South Africa.
Election manifestos are generally expected to be the outline of what a political party would do if it were to form a government and run a country, and should say much about the constituencies they are trying to attract. The ANC is striking the middle ground, the DA is likely to follow a similar route. But the EFF is different: it is not really interested in the votes of some groups in society, liberating it to be more radical in its stance.
The EFF manifesto promised the establishment of 37 ‘economic zones’ in all provinces across the country. Companies which invest in these economic zones ‘will be exempted from paying tax’ provided they commit to creating at least 2,000 jobs. In short, create at least 2000 jobs, and the tax laws of the country will not apply to you. This has distinct echoes of neoliberal economic policies that established Export Processing Zones and Special Development Zones in places around the world, including the Mexican Maquiladoras.