Weekly wrap up

By Andrea Teagle 2 April 2016

Jacob Zuma shits on the nation, a victory lap for SA's rule of law, and Trump outdoes himself.

“That woman just doesn’t know her place, that’s what.” 

ANC MP Bongani Bongo in August 2015, referring to the Public Protector. Check out more cringe-worthy quotes in the Nkandla quotathon.

Zuma shits on the nation
Hopes the JZ might actually resign in a surprise address of the nation on Friday evening were quickly dashed as the President whitewashed his actions with weak excuses. Hogwash like “It was never my intention not to comply with the remedial action” might almost have been funny– except that only Zuma himself could laugh at a reality in which the President of the land flouts the constitution. In promising to abide by the ruling, Zuma was also saying that he would not heed calls to step down. ‘Man of the people’ has become the ultimate irony.

Victory lap for the rule of law
Zuma’s ‘apology’ came after the Constitutional Court’s Thursday ruling on Nkandla. Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng found that President Zuma acted in breach of his obligations firstly by allowing the non-security related upgrades; and secondly by failing to comply with the Public Protector’s remedial actions. Zuma in his speech capitalised on the implied possibility that he may have been following incorrect legal advice when he ignored Thuli’s findings. What is clear though, is that the shroud of seeming invincibility has been pulled from Zuma’s shoulders. 

KPMG backs away from the Guptas
With everyone’s eyes on Zuma and the disgraced National Assembly, KPMG on Friday neatly ducked out from under its position as auditors for the Gupta family companies. KPMG Southern Africa CEO Trevor Hoole noted astutely, “the association risk is too great for us to continue”. 

Trump outdoes himself
Donald Trump engaged in a perversely fascinating exercise of back-and-forward-pedalling after stating that, in the event of an abortions-ban, women seeking illegal abortions should be punished. In a series of contenders for ‘most damaging comment’, this takes the cake. The human specimen that might one day occupy the most powerful position in the world – rationality forbid – said on Friday that “it could be that I misspoke.”
Turkey no refugee haven
While Europe has effectively been paying Turkey (a cool €3bn) to make its refugee problem go away, Turkey has been covertly forcing thousands of refugees to return to Syria, according to a damning Amnesty International report this week. The EU’s chosen refugee ‘haven’ is facing its own escalating internal conflict with militant group PKK. In the latest incident involving the group –  listed internationally as a terrorist organisation – seven police were killed in a car-bombing in Diyarbakir on Friday. 

Video of the Week

Sebastian’s Voodoo

By Joaquin Baldwin

Fact of the Week

Terrorism-related deaths have increased nine-fold since the beginning of the new millennium – 3,329 in 2000, compared to 32,685 in 2014. That’s according to the 2015 Global Terrorism Index, which also noted that most attacks in the West were lone wolf attacks – 80% of which were attributed to right wing extremists, nationalists and anti-government elements, rather than Islamic fundamentalists. 

Sporting Weekend

Sunday: ICC World T20, England v West Indies, 3.30pm.
Super rugby
Saturday (local games):  Bulls v Cheetahs, 7.15pm.

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