First Thing – 23 May 2018

A Palestinian man reads from the Koran before breaking the fast in the Al-Khaldi mosque after sunset during the holy month of Ramadan in Gaza City, 21 May 2018. Muslims around the world celebrate the holy month of Ramadan by praying during the night time and abstaining from eating, drinking, and sexual acts during the period between sunrise and sunset. Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar and it is believed that the revelation of the first verse in Koran was during its last 10 nights.ts. EPA-EFE/MOHAMMED SABER

“I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.” ― Steven Wright


There’s a new Minister of Social Development and a new acting CEO of Sassa, but the R1.4-billion irregular and fruitless expenditure by the previous regime under Bathabile Dlamini’s political watch hovers like a torrid hangover. On Tuesday, further shocking revelations emerged of a last-minute R12-million (the amount of the R20-million signed off that was actually spent) procurement by former KZN-based acting Sassa CEO Pearl Bhengu, a week before the ANC’s highly contested elective conference in December. 

While You Were Sleeping

North Korea prepares nuclear site destruction

North Korea has shipped in foreign journalists to witness the destruction of its Punggye-ri nuclear test site. Scheduled for some time between now and Friday, the move was a solid diplomatic riposte to America’s ongoing gruff attitude that the North “must” meet certain criteria for the Trump-Kim summit to go ahead. Even if it doesn’t, North Korea now gets to show the world that it tried to meet the Americans halfway.

Venezuela expels US diplomats

Just over a day since his disputed election victory, President Nicolas Maduro has declared US diplomats in Venezuela to be “persona non grata”. The United States condemned the expulsion, and threatened stern action should the declaration be carried out. Maduro, evidently hell-bent on burning his bridges, is now squared right against American sanctions.

Polish author wins Man Booker prize

Olga Tokarczuk was awarded the prestigious award on Tuesday for his English translation version of Flights. A book revolving around travel and reflections on the human body, Flights was translated by Jennifer Croft. They will both share the £50,000 prize money.

Bear baiting back on the Trump agenda

The Trump administration revealed yesterday that it intends to lift a series of Obama-era bans on baiting bears by hunters. In addition, Trump’s new repeal would allow hunters to use spotlights on black bear and wolf dens so that they can better hunt cubs. It’s almost as if they are trying to create some manner of evil millionaire’s legislative paradise.

In Numbers

20 seconds

The average time it takes all mammals to pee, regardless of how strong the urge may be.

Facts of the Day

Today is World Turtle Day. Pet a turtle today!

In four of the UK’s top 10 largest airports, it is cheaper to park a light aircraft than it is to park your car.

BFN: min: 4° max: 19°, sunny
CPT: min: 13° max: 16°, cloudy
DBN: min: 15° max: 26°, sunny
EL: min: 14° max: 24°, cloudy
JHB: min: 9° max: 21°, sunny
MHK min: 7° max: 24°,  sunny
NLP: min: 13° max: 31°, sunny
PE:min: 10° max: 23°, cloudy
PMB: min: 10° max: 26°, sunny
PTA: min: 11° max: 24°, sunny

Financial Data
JSE All Share=58,121.84
DJIA= 24,848.32
BTC$=8 167


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