Tuesday, May 7 2019

THE BIG ISSUES

LEADING THE AGENDA

77 voting stations fingered as hot spots, 10 believed to be real threats

Cops braced for action as North West simmers with tension between ANC and EFF

2 min read

The ANC’s fall has left many a lost soul behind. Hallelujah!

When Zuma dragged the ANC out of heaven and pressed its face into the gutter, he made it mortal

Tom Eaton
Columnist
4 min read

ANC on the brink? IRR polling shows massive decline from 2014

It stands to lose outright majorities in Gauteng and KZN, depending on how many people show up to vote

4 min read

Kids are suffering. What do the parties intend to do about it?

A report indicates that there is no budget specifically for children and not a single department in charge of children

3 min read

SMART NEWS

IN ONE TAKE

So sorry, land owner, but our shacks are staying

The squatters and land owner sympathise with one another, and insist that the City of Joburg must sort out the mess

Bongani Fuzile
Journalist
4 min read

It’s now or liver: time for a vaccine against hepatitis A?

A new study suggests this is a crucial question

Tanya Farber
Journalist
3 min read

Sweetest taboos: this is what really whips up our sex fantasies

Mum and dad themes as well as dirty talk give our erotic stories the most fizz, say researchers

Claire Keeton
Journalist
2 min read

And the winner is ... about two months late getting his disputed Safta

Directors Enver Samuel and Simon Wood finally honoured after legal wrangle over documentary award

By Jonathan Ancer
1 min read

Why fat-shaming is still a really big problem

When celebrities are fat-shamed, it has a ripple effect across society, a study shows

Tanya Farber
Journalist
3 min read

SNAPSHOT

Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu cast his vote at his residence in Milnerton, Cape Town, on Monday.
GREETINGS Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu cast his vote at his residence in Milnerton, Cape Town, on Monday.
Image: Esa Alexander/Sunday Times

Six things about SA you need to know

IEC meets union to avert election-day strike

The National Education, Health and Allied Workers’Union (Nehawu) met officials from the Electoral Commission (IEC) on Monday over a range of workplace demands after talks broke down on Sunday in the wake of the union's threat last week to strike during Wednesday’s elections. Nehawu’s Khaya Xaba said the union was meeting commission managers in Pretoria. The union said on Friday it was "extremely concerned" about its members, who it claims have been "fighting with the IEC" for three years. Nehawu members want the commission to implement certain recommendations, including salary bands and pay structures. Nehawu also wants the IEC to help transport members from one voting station to another to deliver and pick up ballot boxes.

Probe into ballot boxes found on roadside

The Electoral Commission (IEC) is investigating a video on Facebook showing ballot boxes lying on the side of the road in Limpopo. "We’re aware of this issue and have found it was an isolated incident. Please note these are unopened/unused ballot boxes and that they would have been replaced at the voting station by now," the IEC replied to a tweet informing it of the video. Errence Mash posted the video he took on Sunday after he saw a box on the side of the road while driving on the R36 towards Tzaneen. He was about 8km outside the town. On Monday morning, the boxes were still there, he said in an updated video. The police have since contacted Mash, who escorted them to where the box was. It is now in their possession.

BLF found guilty of hate speech

The Equality Court has found that the Black First Land First (BLF) political slogan on land is hate speech. The clerk of the Equality Court was directed to send a copy of the judgment to the director of public prosecutions “for possible institution of criminal proceedings against the BLF and its leaders”, Buang Jones‏, an attorney at the SA Human Rights Commission, tweeted on Monday. The BLF was also ordered to remove the slogan "land or death" from its regalia, social media accounts and website within a month, and to issue a written apology to all South Africans within a month. The apology must to be published on the commission’s website, said Jones. BLF leader Andile Mngxitama has indicated that the party will appeal the judgment.

Durban couple shot while filming wedding

A Durban man could have lost "the love of his life" when the couple were shot by unidentified men as they were about to film a wedding. Jonathan Rundle and his wife Karen, who run a videography company, had just arrived at the bride's home in New Germany on Sunday afternoon. As they parked on the side of the road, four armed men attacked them. In a Facebook post on Monday morning, Rundle described the incident as a "hectic botched hijacking". His wife was shot in the abdomen and he was hit in the arm. "I could have lost the love of my life yesterday, but thankfully all the right help arrived." His wife was airlifted to hospital, and was stable after surgery. Police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Thulani Zwane said charges of attempted murder were being investigated.

Man ‘got into boot and shot himself’ at cop shop

Police are investigating after a man allegedly committed suicide next to the Sandton police station in Johannesburg on Sunday. "The allegation is that he parked his car, got out and got into the boot, where he shot himself," said Captain Kay Makhubela. The man died, and an inquest docket has been opened. Makhubela said three licensed firearms were recovered in the car. The man’s motive was not yet known.

‘IS loyalists’ back in dock for couple’s murder

The case against three alleged Islamic State loyalists - who are accused of kidnapping and brutally murdering British-born Cape Town botanists Rodney and Rachael Saunders - is to resume at the Verulam Magistrate's Court on Tuesday. It's been more than a year since Sayfudeen Aslam Del Vecchio, his wife, Fatima Patel, and their boarder, Ahmad “Bazooka” Mussa, were arrested in connection with the murders. They face charges of kidnapping, theft and murder, as well as those relating to the contravention of the Protection of Constitutional Democracy Against Terror and Related Activities Act. They were arrested following the disappearance of the couple, who had been touring northern KZN in search of rare plants and seeds, in February 2018. Their bodies were found several weeks later. Del Vecchio has claimed to have been assaulted in prison.

THE VISUAL SIDE

Britain's Prince Harry said his wife Meghan and newborn son were doing well and described the baby as 'absolutely to die for'. He was speaking to media after the birth of the seventh in line to the British throne on Monday.


CROSSWORDS

GIVE YOUR BRAIN SOME EXERCISE

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

WORLD

THE NEWS YOU DON'T NORMALLY GET TO HEAR

We risk a million extinctions – humankind should be on suicide watch

One million animal and plant species face dying out, many within decades, an alarming UN report says

By AFP
4 min read

Spoiler alert! How secrecy became big at the box office

Studios cultivate spoilerphobia at the behest of directors, but also because it makes commercial sense

By Robbie Collin
3 min read

Yells bells! Tennis shriekers are sneaky game changers

'Unsportsmanlike' grunting doesn't only annoy tennis opponents, it tricks them, study finds

By Dominic Nicholls
2 min read

Boob and bust: over-50s style is complicated territory

After a former Vogue editor takes aim at a one-time supermodel, it's time to establish some sartorial truths

By Shane Watson
5 min read

SNAPSHOT

Trails of rockets launched from Gaza towards Israel, seen from the Israeli side of the border.
SLUNG Trails of rockets launched from Gaza towards Israel, seen from the Israeli side of the border.
Image: Reuters/Amir Cohen

6 things you need to know about the world

Warning: don’t be spooked by ‘berko nutters’

Australia's outspoken former prime minister Paul Keating has launched an extraordinary attack on the country's top spies, branding them "nutters" who had gone "berko" over the threat from China. Just weeks before a national election, the opposition Labour Party was on Monday forced to distance itself from its former talisman's comments. Keating -who was prime minister for five years until 1996 - told national broadcaster ABC on Sunday that the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation and the Australian Secret Intelligence Service had "lost their strategic bearings. "The nutters are in charge," Keating claimed, criticising their suspicions of China. "Whatever you think, China is a great state. It's always been a great state and now has the second-largest economy, soon the largest economy in the world," he said. – AFP

DIY plane might make him a popcorn colonel

The engine is from a roadcutter, the wings are burlap, the wheels are borrowed from a rickshaw: a popcorn seller has caught the attention of the Pakistan Air Force by building his own plane. The tale of Muhammad Fayyaz has captured the hearts of many in a nation where millions, like him, have limited access to education and are fighting for opportunities. “I was literally in the air. I couldn’t feel anything else,” Fayyaz said of his first flight in a machine he learnt to build mainly from viewing TV clips and online blueprints. Pakistan has been thrilled before by stories of scientific prodigies plucked from obscurity before - notably, that of the engineer who said in 2012 that he had invented a car that could run on water - a story that was later debunked by scientists. But Fayyaz insists he flew and his claim is being taken seriously by the air force, whose representatives have visited him numerous times, even issuing a certificate to commend his work, he said. – AFP

Rhymes give Islam a good rap

As the black-clad rapper spat lyrics into the microphone on stage, the Iraqi boys below beat their chests in mourning. He was, after all, paying homage to slain Shiite figurehead Hussein. The ear-splitting drums reverberated around the hall as Iraqi teenagers shouted back rhymes venerating the Prophet Mohammad’s grandson and other honoured figures in Islam. In parts of conservative Iraq, a religious movement within the Shia sect has adapted the traditional “latmiyat” (chanted verses mourning Muslim icons) to Western-style rap to keep youngsters interested in religion. It appears to be working. Even elderly religious figures along the back wall swayed to the rhythm, including Sheikh Salem al-Janahi. He hails from the Mahmoud al-Sarkhi movement, which has championed “Husseini” rap and is therefore regularly accused of distorting conservative traditions. Janahi said his more traditional counterparts “had gotten involved in corruption and politics, so young people began running away from religion”. – AFP

LGBTQ history rolls into classrooms

A picture book for US second graders about a family with two moms. A lesson for fourth graders about Gold Rush era stagecoach driver Charley Parkhurst, who was born a woman but lived as a man. These are just some of the ways American public school students will learn about LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender queer) history in a growing number of states moving to mandate inclusive K-12 curriculum. It is the latest chapter in a decades-long push to teach students about the trials and contributions of marginalised communities - from suffragettes to black Americans - whose stories have often been absent from classrooms. – Reuters

Big Humpty Doo over three-eyed snake

A three-eyed snake found slithering down a road in the northern Australian town of Humpty Doo has sparked amusement in a country already accustomed to unusual wildlife. Rangers dubbed the unusual serpent “Monty Python” after finding it on a highway. X-rays showed all three of its eyes were functioning and the extra socket probably developed naturally while the snake was an embryo, the Northern Territory Parks and Wildlife Commission said on Facebook, noting that such deformities were common among reptiles. Wildlife officers told the Northern Territory News the 40cm carpet python was about three months old and died after about a month in captivity. “It’s remarkable it was able to survive so long in the wild with its deformity and he was struggling to feed before he died last week,” ranger Ray Chatto told the newspaper. - AFP

So this is how the cookies crumble

Alphabet Inc’s Google is set to roll out a dashboard-like function in its Chrome browser to offer internet users more control in fending off tracking cookies, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter. Cookies are small text files that follow users on the internet and are the basis on which advertisers target consumers on the specific interest they have displayed while browsing. While Google’s new tools are not expected to significantly curtail its ability to collect data, it would help the company press its sizeable advantage over online-advertising rivals, the newspaper said. Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment. - Reuters

THE BUSINESS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

SA mustn’t be chicken about taking lessons from Turkey

Bank-postal service hybrid aims to be an e-commerce force in Africa, and SA Post Office is a potential partner

By Mark Barnes
3 min read

MTN trundles out the heavy boardroom artillery

Not since the days of the Independent News and Media Group has a board featured so many high-profile names

By Ann Crotty
1 min read

Shareholders smile as Anglo sorts out sweet iron ore deal

A $15bn, 20-year deal to supply iron ore from Minas Rio in Brazil marks a turnaround for the troubled mine

By Allan Seccombe
1 min read

LIFESTYLE

CULTURE COMES ALIVE

Just for the record: Vintage gold-dust from the archives

A fortnightly review of music on vinyl

By Andrew Donaldson
11 min read

Let’s face it, you’ll need a stiff drink later on Wednesday

From wine to whisky, some top tipples to cheer yourself up and two events worth penciling in your diary

By Wade Bales
2 min read

‘Swan Song’: The treachery that ruined Truman Capote

The book recalls a storm of 1960s socialites, scandal and the author’s notorious betrayal of his friends

By Michele Magwood
4 min read

SPORT

FINISH LINE ESSENTIALS

SPORTS DAY: All the big PSL guns start chewing their nails

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
Journalist
5 min read

When players and suits go to war, can there be a winner?

Threats of legal action surround plan to restructure cricket via austerity measures that could see jobs lost

Telford Vice
Journalist
2 min read