Waiting for Black Tuesday; the Mac Maharaj affair: blow by blow; Mogoeng & Hlophe; PayPal Founder Peter Thiel; the Pope visits Voodoo Africa. By iMAVERICK TEAM.
One planet, 15 minutes
It happened overnight; South Africa; Africa; World; Business; and Life, etc.
The trouble in Tahrir had its roots earlier last week, when, after much humming and hawing, the military government finally announced how a new constitution would be created. Do whatever you want, they told Egypt’s revolutionaries. Except for these small, insignificant conditions. Nothing to fuss about. But the revolutionaries, of all stripes, were most certainly fussed. With reason. By SIMON ALLISON.
We didn’t see this one coming. South Sudan has offered billions of dollars that it doesn’t really have to resolve its many outstanding issues with Sudan proper, its belligerent northern neighbour. Tempting, perhaps, for the cash-strapped regime in Khartoum, but a once-off payment won’t make the problems go away. By SIMON ALLISON
PROTEST FLARES IN EAST AFGHANISTAN AGAINST US DEAL
Around 1,000 people, mostly students, took to the streets in eastern Afghanistan on Sunday to protest against plans for a long-term partnership deal with the United States, which they fear could lead to an extended presence of US troops. By Rafiq Sherzad and Hamid Shalizi.
CHINESE VICE PREMIER SEES CHRONIC GLOBAL RECESSION
A long-term global recession is certain to happen and China must focus on domestic problems, Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan has said. By Zhou Xin and Benjamin Kang Lim (Reuters).
WALMART’S $1.4 BILLION GALLERY DRAWS FLAK
As Walmart waits to hear whether its South African Massmart acquisition will finally be successful, it faces controversy in another area. A billion-dollar art gallery opened by the Walmart heiress, Alice Walton, in Arkansas is being criticised for its scale and expense at a time when the corporation is cutting worker benefits. By REBECCA DAVIS.
The latest news in the ongoing controversy surrounding the Protection of State Information Bill is that MPs will vote on the matter on Tuesday. The National Press Club has dubbed the day “Black Tuesday” and called on South Africans to don black as a form of protest; the Right2Know Campaign is organising multiple simultaneous pickets and Public Prosecutor Thuli Madonsela has set up a team to investigate concerns around the bill. Whatever happens on Tuesday, South Africans fighting for access to information will not be silenced. By THERESA MALLINSON.
RIGHT TO INFORMATION LAWS IGNORED WORLDWIDE
Laws governing citizens’ to know what is happening in their governments have become commonplace over the past decade. But it’s not just South Africans who dread the lack of transparency: a new report from the Associated Press suggests that more than half the countries with “Right to Know” laws do not actually follow them. By REBECCA DAVIS.
It was not the most opportune time for a literature festival in Johannesburg. In an act of daring cunning that never fails to raise the ire of motorists, cyclists had commandeered this city’s roads while in a restive enclave of Illovo, a group of men battled for ascendancy in a game of cricket. While the more uncultured of the city’s booklovers were in raptures at the cinema, the pretentious snobs among the literary class were robbed of an opportunity to listen to some of literature’s living greats reflect on the shifting position of women in African literature. By KHADIJA PATEL.
When Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng was finally appointed by President Jacob Zuma, after a long Judicial Service Commission hearing, I, being shy and retiring, took the liberty of giving him some advice. I said to him that the hurricane that was the Judge John Hlophe issue was going to be the toughest thing for him to handle. That if he managed it right, he would have the respect of just about all of his critics. The wind is blowing furiously now, and the testing time is nearly here. So far, Mogoeng’s not doing too badly. By STEPHEN GROOTES.
Presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj has had a rough few days. As well as being the subject of the Mail & Guardian’s censored lead story on Friday, two days later the Sunday Times published a page-one story alleging that Maharaj and his wife received millions from French arms-company Thales. He’s responded with defensive tactics: firstly, emphasing his rights under current legislation; and secondly, pointing fingers at other people (especially the media and that bladdie agent, Nic Dawes), rather than addressing the matter at hand – the accusation that he lied to the Scorpions. By THERESA MALLINSON.
Well, well, well. So now we know what Mac Maharaj so desperately doesn’t want us to know. Information wants to be free and all that. The president’s spokesman hasn’t exactly resoundingly refuted the allegations against him in the press. Am I the only one waiting with bated breath for the arms deal commission and what it will uncover?
On Friday 18 November, in a small auditorium at the National Energy Regulator’s offices in Pretoria, a hearing was held on municipal tariffs for the forthcoming financial year. Only one interested party showed up to make a submission, but what it had to say spoke of an economic malaise that’s likely to affect all South Africans. By KEVIN BLOOM.
You have to hand it to sports minister Fikile Mbalula. Scant weeks after a model stepped forward to claim she was pregnant with his child, the story seems to have blown away. It wasn’t by mistake, though. Oh no. The minister has crafted a careful comeback strategy. Other scandal-beset politicians take note. By SIPHO HLONGWANE.
The Pope was in Africa this weekend, visiting the little West African country of Benin which is producing priests a lot faster than anywhere in Europe. It seems the future of the Catholic Church is in Africa, and it looks like the Pope knows it. By SIMON ALLISON.
GADDAFI SON: FROM HEIR APPARENT TO FRIGHTENED FUGITIVE
Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, who was captured in Libya’s rugged desert, transformed himself during this year’s uprising from a relaxed reformer to a belligerent and loyal lieutenant of his father who is now wanted by the ICC accused of crimes against humanity. By Marie-Louise Gumuchian (Reuters).
FACTBOX: GADDAFI’S CHILDREN
Muammar Gaddafi’s eight children led lives ranging from security chief and UN goodwill ambassador to playboy and professional footballer, often earning reputations for extravagance and violence to rival their father’s. What happened to all of them? (Reuters).
ALL EYES ON EUROPE’S 7% YIELDS
In some cultures, the number seven is mystical and magical; in the eurozone, it’s a Mayday call. By Jeremy Gaunt (Reuters).
VOLATILE WEEK AWAITS WALL STREET
Wall Street is in for a volatile run this week as escalating problems in Europe’s debt crisis continue to keep investors on their toes. By Angela Moon (Reuters).
ANALYSIS: OBAMA PIVOTS TOWARDS ASIA, EYEING US EXPORTS AND JOBS
US President Barack Obama sought to charm Asia-Pacific leaders this week with Australian slang and memories from his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia in his bid to boost US ties with the fast-growing region. By Caren Bohan and Laura MacInnis (Reuters).
The Republicans are anti-science. That’s hardly a secret. With the US facing a staggering deficit and the recession rolling on, science funding in the States is in decline, while venture capital investments into technology moves to later stages. Bad news for emerging science and technology innovations deemed radical or risky. But billionaire investor and philanthropist Peter Thiel has come to the rescue with an early stage fund that invests in garage science and tech start-ups both in and outside America. By MANDY DE WAAL.
WOODS REPAYS COUPLES’ FAITH BY CLINCHING WIN
Tiger Woods delivered the knockout punch to the International team on Sunday to silence critics of his early Presidents Cup selection by captain Fred Couples. By Michael Davis (Reuters).
FEDERER OFF TO WINNING START
Defending champion Roger Federer made a winning start at the ATP World Tour Finals with a 6-2 2-6 6-4 victory in his opening round-robin match against Jo- Wilfried Tsonga at the O2 on Sunday. By Martin Herman (Reuters).
MARADONA’S MOM PASSES TO THE GREAT FIELD IN THE SKY
Diego Maradona was set to arrive home to a national outpouring of grief on Sunday after his desperate trip from Dubai to see his dying mother was too late, local media reported. By Rex Gowar (Reuters).
PONTING’S PEARLS CAST BEFORE SWINE: DAY FOUR OF THE SECOND TEST MATCH
The Test battles between South Africa and Australia have been among the most enthralling in recent years. As the fourth day of the final Test drew to a close PAUL BERKOWITZ’s appreciation of Ponting’s beautiful innings was spoiled by some ugly fans.
REAL AND BARCA MOVE CLEAR IN LA LIGA
Real Madrid and Barcelona pulled away at the top of La Liga when leaders Real edged third-placed Valencia 3-2 away in a thrilling but ill-tempered clash after Barca thumped visiting Real Zaragoza 4-0 on Saturday. By Iain Rogers (Reuters).
WARBURTON RETAINED AS WALES CAPTAIN FOR AUTUMN TESTS
Wales have retained Sam Warburton as captain ahead of their clash with Australia at the Millennium Stadium. By Planetrugby.com.
The 2016 Rio Olympic medals are already showing defects including rusting and chipping.