Weekly News Brief

Weekly News Brief
Bloemfontein - credits: afrikanerway.wordpress.com

NHI BILL, National Women’s Day, Malema’s Speech Not Hate Speech, Seal Information Says Ramaphosa, The Case of Missing Lottery Winner and much more…

HEADLINE NEWS THIS WEEK

The Philippi lady Meghan Cremer, who went missing last weekend was unfortunately found murdered on Thursday. Three men linked to the murder and were arrested before the body was found while in possession of her car will stay behind bars until their next court appearance. The trio appeared in the Athlone Magistrates Court on Thursday facing charges of murder, theft of a vehicle and the possession of stolen property. Cremer’s body was found at a sand mine in Philippi on Thursday morning. Various details emerged in court yesterday, when Jeremy Sias, Charles Daniels and Shiraaz Jaftha appeared in court following their arrest earlier this week. Police officers found the trio in possession of Meghan Cremer’s car.

On Thursday, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize released the much-awaited National Health Insurance (NHI) bill in Pretoria. He said that it is expected to be fully functional in South Africa by 2026. The release of the bill was widely welcomed by various groups in the sector. The Health Department said the bill promised to create a healthier population with benefits to foreign nationals, inmates and refugees.

Today Friday was the National Women’s Day in South Africa. On this day 63 years years ago, thousands of women marched on the Union Buildings in Pretoria against the apartheid pass law. In her remarks to mark the day, the Minister in the Presidency Responsible for Women Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said that women should be given more opportunities for equal education, jobs and salaries compared to their male counterparts.  Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said South Africa’s freedom was not free and every South African must fight together to make sure it was a better place for women.

The Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu has said that while there was no appetite from government to approach the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a bailout, there was a need to exercise prudent financial management. Mthembu spoke to journalists on Thursday after the conclusion of this week’s two-day Cabinet meeting. He explained that government was still working on a plan to get South Africa out of the current economic slump, the details of which would be shared by the Finance Minister during the midterm budget statement.

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s legal team has asked the Gauteng High Court to seal certain information contained in the record of the Public Protector’s report on Bosasa. Busisiwe Mkhwebane found that the president misled Parliament in his response to a question about a R500,000 donation from Bosasa for his ANC presidential campaign in 2017. He also found that there could have been possible money laundering, ordering the NPA to investigate.

The Economic Freedom Fighters on Tuesday told the Equality Court a study on party leader Julius Malema’s speech in November last year showed he was clearly opposed to violence, despite being critical of journalists. The party had opposed an application brought by the South African National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) and five reporters. In a speech he gave outside the state capture commission last year, which was also tweeted on the party’s official account, Malema identified several journalists as enemies and instructed supporters to deal with them. However, advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi insisted that the language used by the EFF leader was metaphorical.

OTHER THINGS WE LIKED

President Cyril Ramaphosa said the 58% enrolment of women in South African universities shows the government has made a difference in the lives of women in the country. Ramaphosa addressed the  National Women’s Day event in Vryburg, North West on Friday, where he committed to the empowerment of women and reflected on the struggles they are facing. While Ramaphosa noted government’s successes in empowering women, he also committed to improving the lives of women.

This week also, we saw eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede say that she’s being victimised because she’s a champion of radical socio-economic transformation. Gumede addressed her supporters outside the Durban Magistrate’s Court after her appearance on Thursday. She’s facing charges of fraud, corruption and racketeering. Gumede told supporters she’s suffering the same fate as former President Jacob Zuma for championing the interests of black people. She insisted that she’s innocent and the state had no case against her.

The Public Protector, Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane, claimed there was a concerted effort to assassinate her character because she had investigated people she describes as untouchables. In an exclusive interview with Eyewitness News, Mkhwebane lashed out at judges who delivered damning findings against her, saying they should play the ball and not the man. She also accused the media of stooping too low. Mkhwebane recently lost a number of cases in court, with judges questioning her credibility and grasp of the law. She said she had been treated unfairly.

The National Lottery operator has announced they are looking for the winner of over R20 million. The said winner who has not shown up to claim his money had until September to claim the prize. The operator said the person with the winning lottery ticket still hasn’t claimed R23.7 million since the lucky draw in September 2018. Spokesperson Khensani Mabuza said if the winner didn’t come forward, they would forfeit the money.

The Hawks said on Wednesday that the increasing number of fraudulent medical doctors was a cause for concern and that they had launched an investigation into their qualifications.  Hawks head Lieutenant-General Godfrey Lebeya announced this at a conference of the International Association of Financial Crime Investigators. Lebeya said his unit was worried about the lives put in the hands of fake doctors.

ICYMI

Sue Williamson: ‘That Particular Morning’

Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

August 31 @ 08:00 – 17:00