Monday, September 17 2018



How Trump has made the world's wickedest men - and Zuma - very happy indeed

The US has emboldened dictators around the world by officially spitting in the face of the International Criminal Court

4 min read

'Hundreds of leopards being slaughtered for church's outfits'

Amid rage over new hunting quota, experts say Shembe church is getting more than its fur share of leopard skins

Tony Carnie
3 min read

Analysis: Enough with the ‘racist’ hysteria over ‘hit the boer’

Cases involving alleged racism need to be examined on their own, very particular merits

Karyn Maughan
4 min read



One yell of a guy: Parkrun marshal a sudden star

Roodepoort Parkunner says he is humbled by social media fame after a clip of him cheering strangers went viral

Alex Patrick
2 min read

Corruption watchdog 'was suckered by Zuma regime'

Expert says an international report on foreign bribery was way too kind to SA

Belinda Pheto
3 min read

R30m a matter of life and death as son takes bullet for official

Company with ‘political affiliations’ allegedly behind hit that sent a top official into hiding after his son was killed

By Tanya Broughton
4 min read

It's like Uber, only it's for errands – and it's a godsend

Those who are too busy can ask others to run errands for them

Leonie Wagner
3 min read

Why this ancient African instrument is music to scientists' ears

Scientists have found a way to detect poison with the help of musical notes

Dave Chambers
Cape Town bureau chief
2 min read



Not a drone deal: When a discount’s not a discount

Can an online retailer unilaterally cancel your purchase?

Wendy Knowler
Consumer journalist
3 min read

Sorry Mr Barnes, your Post Office needs to hit resend

Will glitches mean an end to overseas subscriptions?

Wendy Knowler
Consumer journalist
2 min read

Trigger warning: How our varsity students turned into whining wimps

Our fragile, coddled undergrads are abandoning the empiricism and tolerance that underpinned the Enlightenment

By Daniel Hannan
4 min read



Today's cryptic crossword

It's time to put your brain to work

1 min read

Today's quick crossword

How fast can you get it done?

1 min read


Demonstrators in a protest against Colombian former army commander Mario Montoya in Bogota, Colombia.
MASKED INTENTIONS Demonstrators in a protest against Colombian former army commander Mario Montoya in Bogota, Colombia.
Image: Raul Arboleda /AFP

Six things about SA you need to know

Prisons ‘nerve centre’ will soon be safe: Masutha

Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha wants his staff back at HQ as soon as possible but will not go to the courts to challenge the shutdown of the building by Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga‚ on safety grounds. In the wake of a deadly fire in the Joburg city centre‚ at a building which was not up to code‚ concerns have been raised about safety in older buildings occupied by government departments. "We cannot continue to put the lives of over 1‚000 employees at risk‚ who are expected to report to work every day in a building that is not complying to safety regulations and is non-conducive‚" Msimanga said after visiting the Poyntons Building in the Pretoria CBD‚ after which he announced its evacuation. On Friday he said the city manager's office would investigate the occupational health and safety standards and fire compliance for City of Tshwane buildings, including those owned or occupied by the city.

DA: Mahlangu must pay up for Esidimeni victims

The Democratic Alliance is considering legal options to ensure former Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu and senior health officials are forced to personally pay towards the Life Esidimeni compensation costs. DA Gauteng health spokesperson Jack Bloom said on Sunday this followed the failure of the Gauteng provincial government to respond within 60 days to his July 16 letter to premier David Makhura and Health MEC Gwen Ramokgopa to demand that they pursue legal action against those implicated in the Esidimeni tragedy so that they pay a share of the R159m arbitration award to relatives of those who suffered and died. His letter “submitted that a period of 60 days was adequate time to take legal advice as government may see fit to commence proceedings in this matter‚ but I have not received any written response”.

Anti-poaching raid nets 27 suspects

A suspected rhino and lion poaching operation has been dismantled with the arrest of 27 people during operations in Hluhluwe‚ Acornhoek and Phalaborwa. The SA Police Service's National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure said on Sunday the suspects were arrested over the past week. "Remains of known endangered species were recovered‚" said Lieutenant-Colonel Katlego Mogale. A rhino horn was also seized‚ in addition to "three silencers‚ six unlicensed firearms‚ ammunition as well as other items that could have been used for the killing of wild animals". Police had also opened an inquiry after suspected lion bones lion were discovered in Phalaborwa. The arrests were a result of an intelligence-led operation. The Rhino 9 Team‚ Mogale said‚ comprises various government departments including police units‚ the Hawks‚ Customs and Excise‚ the SA National Defence Force‚ Ezemvelo and SANParks game rangers.

IFP official killed in ambush

Zakhele Mazibuko‚ from the Inkatha Freedom Party's uThukela district‚ was killed in an ambush on Sunday night‚ the IFP confirmed on Sunday. The district's publicity secretary was attacked between Estcourt and Colenso‚ shortly after leaving a party meeting‚ said Mkhuleko Hlengwa‚ the IFP's national spokesperson. "Heartfelt condolences to the family. #SilenceTheGuns‚" Hlengwa tweeted. The details of the killings are still sketchy. Hlengwa said more details would be released at a later date. While it is not yet known whether the killing was politically motivated‚ KwaZulu-Natal is awaiting the release of a report by the Moerane Commission of Inquiry into political slayings in the province. The commission finished its work earlier this year and its report has been completed and is expected to be released by the end of the month.

‘Rolex gang’ suspects arrested in Joburg

A family was saved from four robbers following their car in Rivonia‚ northern Johannesburg‚ when police swooped on them before they could attack on Saturday, in an operation by the SA Police Services and Johannesburg Metro Police freeway officers. "Four suspects were arrested by the Provincial Trio Task Team after they allegedly robbed a victim of a Rolex watch and ring in Germiston‚" police said. Officers tracked them towards the Fourways area along William Nicol Drive‚ where they arrested the suspects. The metro police added that four unlicensed firearms‚ balaclavas and gloves were recovered. So-called Rolex gangs are notorious for following their victims and robbing them of expensive watches and jewellery. Last month‚ two men were robbed of Rolex watches outside a Sandton hotel. In June‚ three people were arrested after a shootout with police in Johannesburg.

Maimane stuns DA with premiership move

A DA press conference scheduled for today to announce premier Helen Zille’s successor was postponed after party leader Mmusi Maimane nominated himself to take her place. Party leaders said they were stunned when Maimane put his name forward, snubbing candidates who were chosen through vigorous internal processes. The move is seen as an admission that the ANC would retain power after the national elections next year. DA Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela said he was surprised by Maimane’s decision and expressed his reservations during a meeting on Friday night. DA insiders said following the party’s selection process that Western Cape economic opportunities MEC Alan Winde emerged as the No 1 candidate, with MP David Maynier as No 2 while human settlements MEC Madikizela coming at No 3. Maimane’s spokesperson, Portia Adams, said there was not final decision on the matter.



The news you don't normally get to hear

Russia's spies are now at war ... with each other

Botched Salisbury poison attack by GRU has left other Kremlin espionage agencies fuming and demanding action

By Dominic Nicholls, Patrick Sawer and Edward Malnick
4 min read

Not only in SA: Oz has shocking spike in abuse of elderly

One Australian aged-care facility is shut down every month amid horrific stories of abuse, neglect and mistreatment

2 min read

Playboy Pole on trial over murder of Monaco’s richest woman

Prosecutors are convinced she was gunned down because her daughter’s lover wanted to get his mitts on her huge wealth

By David Chazan
2 min read

For heaven’s sake, stop calling God ‘he’, bishop says

The Anglican Church worries that the use of 'male language' is conveying 'subconscious messages' to youngsters

By Olivia Rudgard
2 min read


A man stands in the rain during Hurricane Florence in South Carolina.
A HOWLING CONTEST WITH THE WIND A man stands in the rain during Hurricane Florence in South Carolina.
Image: Reuters/Randall Hill


Liz Hurley paid out for injured pooch

Amazon has paid actress Liz Hurley's veterinary bill after a van delivery driver ‘ran over her pet Labrador'. Hurley was left ‘devestated’ after Hector nearly died in the accident, suffering a collapsed lung and a broken leg, Now, nine months later, the retail giant has agreed to pay the £2,000 costs. Hurley’s sister Katie, who was at Liz’s home when the dog was injured, said: ‘He had staggered back to the house. He collapsed and was bleeding in my arms. We thought we were going to lose him, it was just hideous.’ – The Daily Telegraph

Is cobra venom the next drug scourge?

Indian doctors have been left baffled after two men registered themselves for drug addiction to an unusual, and often deadly, narcotic of choice: snake venom. The men have been getting cobras to bite them on their tongues as no amount of more traditionally intoxicating substances gives them a buzz any more. They apparently paid snake charmers to help get the animals to bite them. ‘They experienced heightened arousal and a sense of well-being, which according to them was more intense than the high of a normal dose of alcohol or opioid," a doctor said. - The Daily Telegraph

The latest Texan serial killer is nabbed

Texas police have arrested a veteran US Border Patrol agent, who is suspected of killing four women within the past two weeks and kidnapping a fifth. Juan David Ortiz, 35, who has worked for the Border Patrol for a decade, was found hiding in a parking lot after a woman he allegedly abducted was able to escape and alert law enforcement. He was charged late on Saturday with four counts of murder, aggravated assault and unlawful restraint. The women were all sex workers. – Reuters

Drug mayhem at Sydney music festival

Two people died, a dozen more were hospitalised and hundreds others sought medical assistance after suspected drug overdoses at a music festival in Sydney. The police has charged 10 people with drug supply offences, including two teenagers who allegedly carried 120 capsules to the festival. ‘I'm absolutely aghast at what has occurred,’ said New South Wales premier Gladys Berejiklian. – Reuters

Queen is on the horns of a dilemma

In the world of Highland cattle Queen Elizabeth II is the reigning champion. She has been proudly raising Highland cows at her Balmoral estate for 65 years - and has repeatedly won prizes across the country for the quality of her livestock. But this year, Her Majesty's animals have appeared at none of this year's Highland shows. The reason? The Queen is afraid her beloved herd might become infected by disease. An official said imported livestock are spreading such illnesses as infectious bovine rhinotracheitis. – The Daily Telegraph

Pope defrocks top priest over child sex claims

Pope Francis has defrocked a Chilean priest under investigation in a case involving the sexual abuse of children. The Reverend Cristian Precht was a former head of the Church’s Vicariate of Solidarity human rights group that in the 1980s challenged ex-dictator Augusto Pinochet to end the practice of torture in Chile. The well-known Chilean religious leader has since been accused of sexual abuse as part of the investigation into allegations against members of the Marist Brothers religious community. - Reuters



Texton ‘staring into abyss’ as latest CEO leaves

As the Texton Property Fund loses its fourth CEO in as many years, fund managers are ringing alarm bells

By Alistair Anderson
2 min read

State 'is squeezing the life out of gas market'

Regulations are stifling efforts to create a competitive liquefied petroleum gas marketplace, Afrox argues

By Siseko Njobeni
3 min read



Stop the world, Terminal Man wants to get off

A Syrian man stuck in an airport’s arrivals lounge has become an unlikely social media sensation

By Tymon Smith
2 min read

So long Stone Age, tata Iron Age, howdy Plastic Age

Plastic waste is now so widespread it’s creating a new layer in the Earth’s crust

By Sarah Knapton
2 min read

What in the heck is Cooking at trillion-dollar Apple?

Whereas Apple used to tell customers what they wanted, now it’s ‘give customers every possible option’

By James Titcomb
4 min read

Commute to work by jet? Ja, even if it’s just from a suburb

Aston Martin, Honda and Rolls-Royce reckon short-distance air taxis are the solution to urban congestion

By Moiketsi Thipe
1 min read



SPORTS DAY: It’s all about the team, says Dyantyi

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Mninawa Ntloko
Sports editor
7 min read

Black with a vengeance: Boks produce the high-stakes goods

The Bok coach will be chuffed with the guts and amazing attitude his charges showed to down the mighty All Blacks

3 min read

Blasts from the past

Today in SA sports history: September 17

By David Isaacson
1 min read