Friday, May 24 2019



Zuma wields Abrahams letter to get him off the hook

It’s now a matter of whether or not the court will admit the evidence penned by the former prosecutions boss

Karyn Maughan
3 min read

Watchdogs breathe easier after winning pollution battle

Outgoing environmental affairs minister has reversed a decision to double the sulphur dioxide emissions limit

Bongani Fuzile
2 min read

No matter how hard farming might be, they won’t be cowed

Black farmers extol their work, but warn that it takes cash, time and more sweat than you’d imagine

4 min read



Jobs, crime, trains drive Winde’s agenda

If we can’t get trains right, we’re going to struggle with other objectives, says the new Western Cape premier

By Dan Meyer
2 min read

Satanic murder witnesses ‘will live with scars’

This is a case of religious manipulation, deceit and lies, says prosecutor

Iavan Pijoos
3 min read

K-word ‘is only hurtful when used by a white person’

Fani Titi can't claim the word is racially abusing him, laywers for fellow black businessman Peter-Paul Ngwenya argue

3 min read

Pig out: Good news for pork lovers amid swine fever breakout

The outbreak that has affected four provinces in the country does not pose any risks to consumers, experts say

Bongani Fuzile
3 min read

Killer whales live up to their name in Cape’s ‘drive-thru shark McDonald’s’

Orcas leave a trail of corpses on their relentless hunt for fresh, nutrient-rich shark livers along Cape coast

By Sumin Woo
2 min read

It gets under our skinner, so who gossips and why?

Researchers found that younger people are more likely to gossip, and it is more likely to be negative

2 min read



Joburg belongs to no one and everyone, but it’s for all time

The city of gold is young and has shallow roots but it rises fast and high - but the city that’s yours never goes away

5 min read
Ideas FREE

A victim of law: The injustice of Davison murder charges

Dying individuals’ constitutional rights have not been appropriately recognised in our law

By Willem Landman
5 min read

My f*k, Belinda! DA is another tweet closer to oblivion

The new DA shadow minister's pick-your-nose-and-eat-it-on-camera stupidity was mind boggling

Tom Eaton
2 min read

Her hagfish is my bananas and custard, and everything’s gonna be OK

A column to satisfy your inner grammar nerd

Sue de Groot
3 min read


Bharatiya Janata Party supporters celebrate initial poll results outside the party office in Gandhinagar, India.
MODI TURNS BALLOTS INTO CONFETTI Bharatiya Janata Party supporters celebrate initial poll results outside the party office in Gandhinagar, India.
Image: Reuters/Amit Dave

Six things about SA you need to know

M2 bridge work ‘on track for October finish’

The M2 bridge rehabilitation will be finished by the end of October. This was the assurance from the Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) on Thursday. The agency said it would stick to its initial deadline in rehabilitating the M2 between the Crown Interchange and Maritzburg Street, which has been closed since February. The comment comes after reports that there had been no work done on the site. JRA spokesperson Siyabonga Nodu denied the reports, saying a quarter of the work had been done and that construction was still under way. "The overall project is on schedule and will be completed by October 30 2019 as planned," he said. The bridge was closed after concerns in 2018 over the stability of the Karzene and Selby sections, which posed a threat to road users.

Adam Catzavelos to stand trial over race rant

Businessman Adam Catzavelos, who catapulted to notoriety last August after a video of him using the k-word to celebrate the fact that there were no black people around him on a beach holiday went viral, is expected to appear in court next week. Legal sources said he will face a charge of crimen injuria in a Randburg district court on Tuesday, May 28. The EFF in Gauteng had opened a case against him at the Bramley police station after the video surfaced. The National Prosecuting Authority would say only that a warrant had been served, explaining that accused people could be named only after they had appeared in court. The outrage over Catzavelos's comments led to his family’s business being dumped by major clients, and he was fired from the business with immediate effect. He went public to apologise for the damage his video had caused.

Above-inflation tariff hikes for Joburg

Johannesburg has announced plans for above-inflation increases in its tariffs. Mayoral committee member for finance Funzela Ngobeni tabled proposed tariff increases this week, including a 13.07% rise for electricity across all categories of customers, 9.9% for water, 5.5% for property rates, and 7% for refuse removal. To mitigate these increases, households without any formal income would get 15 kilolitres of free water a month and 150 kilowatt hours of electricity, said Ngobeni. The city's 2019/20 budget is R64.5bn, it was revealed. Departments with the largest slices of the operating budget are Joburg Water (R11.5bn), the good governance cluster (R10.6bn), human and social development (R9.5bn), economic growth cluster (R5.7bn), public safety (R5.5bn), group finance (R5.4bn), and environment and infrastructure (R2.5bn).

Court closed as ‘IS loyalist’ applies for bail

The Verulam Family Court was closed to court officials, the public and the media for the bail application of an alleged Islamic State loyalist on Thursday. The bail application of Ahmad Jackson Mussa, a 35-year-old Malawian citizen better known by his alias, Bazooka, was expected to proceed with only the prosecution, defence team and magistrate present. Mussa's co-accused, Sayfudeen Aslam del Vecchio and Bibi Fatima Patel, who were denied bail in 2018, were also expected to be present in court, at their own request. The three face a raft of charges pertaining to the kidnapping and murder of Cape Town-based British botanists Rodney and Rachel Saunders in February 2018. Hawks spokesperson Captain Lloyd Ramovha said the decision to have the court closed to the public was not irregular. The bail proceedings were adjourned to Friday.

Cops alerted as Unisa exam papers leaked

The University of SA (Unisa) confirmed on Thursday that exam question papers scheduled to be written during the May/June 2019 exam period have been "compromised". "The matter has been reported to the police's commercial crimes investigation unit, which will be embarking on an intensive investigation to establish where and how the examination question papers have been leaked," Unisa said. It would also initiate a forensic audit of its processes. "Students are encouraged not to participate in such fraudulent activities as (they) may be referred to the student disciplinary unit for investigation and disciplinary measures. Should students be found guilty of contravening the student disciplinary code, their module/s will be cancelled and marks will be withdrawn."

IFP accuses KZN premier of ‘hatred’

The IFP has come out guns blazing by accusing newly elected KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala of "hatred" by failing to mention the party's former premiers during his acceptance speech. After being sworn in at the KZN legislature on Wednesday, Zikalala paid tribute to the former four ANC premiers for leaving behind "a catalogue of achievements and a wonderful spirit of camaraderie amongst colleagues and comrades". But he ignored the three former IFP premiers - Frank Mdlalose, Ben Ngubane and Lionel Mtshali – which prompted IFP leader in the legislature, Velenkosini Hlabisa, to accuse Zikalala of "hatred and immaturity". Zikalala downplayed the IFP's criticism, saying he would meet Hlabisa to discuss the matter. "I hear them talking about hatred, there is no hatred," he said.




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 FREE

Tim-for-tat: Apple is a pawn ready for China to weaponise

This explains why the US tech giant has strongly opposed Trump’s aggressive actions against China on trade

By Robin Pagnamenta
4 min read

Last known ship to bring slaves to US discovered in Alabama

The Clotilda is believed to have been sunk in 1860 to hide evidence of its use in the slave trade

By Reuters
2 min read

Puff piece: E-cigarettes really do make quitting less of a fag

UK study finds nicotine-laced vapes can double success rates of quitting smoking

By Kate Kelland
2 min read

Double duchess: Tiffany is mistaken for Meghan so often she gets to be her

Since the royal wedding, everyone from strangers to friends ‘suddenly found it hard to get past the resemblance’

By Celia Walden
8 min read


People play in front of the Swiss Federal Palace in Bern, Switzerland.
RELIEF FROM THE BERN People play in front of the Swiss Federal Palace in Bern, Switzerland.
Image: Reuters/Denis Balibouse

6 things you need to know about the world

Good reef! Uber rises to new depths

A select few Australians will soon be able to briefly book an Uber submarine to the Great Barrier Reef, the ride-sharing giant said on Thursday. From next week - in what Uber is pitching as a world first - people in Queensland state will be able to order a ride through the Uber app on a two-person submarine and tour the World Heritage site. A piloted battery-powered "scUber", costing A$1,500 (R14,880) per person, will take 20 dives between May 27 and June 18, with each trip lasting an hour. The sub will take two passengers 20m below sea level and along designated dive paths around the reef, in partnership with environmental advocacy group Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef. – AFP

Flying fish spears two Down Under

Two boating brothers have been rushed to a hospital with serious injuries after a being hit by a flying marlin in the waters off Australia's east coast on Thursday. The men in their 40s were sailing in a rigid hull inflatable boat near Coffs Harbour when they were struck by the 80-100kg animal. The spear-nosed fish flew through the air and crashed into the brothers on the boat, which had been travelling at about 40km/h. "The marlin's sharp snout sliced open the younger brother's lower right arm, causing an open fracture," New South Wales police said. "The older brother suffered a deep cut to his right shoulder." – AFP

Blacklash over rule that won’t dye

Japanese school rules that force children to dye their hair black so they fit in with their classmates are facing a growing backlash, fuelled by a viral video campaign and a fast-growing petition. What began as a marketing campaign by the Pantene shampoo brand, which coincidentally also sells hair dye, has gained a groundswell of support in an effort to change the rules. The #HairWeGo What's Wrong With My Hair campaign video presents the findings of a survey of 1,000 children and teachers in relation to hair rules in schools. The issue of draconian hair rules in Japanese schools was highlighted two years ago when a pupil sued the Osaka prefectural government for damages after being continuously forced to dye her naturally brown hair a more uniform black. – © Telegraph Media Group Limited (2019)

Cops hail mystic’s tunnel vision

Israeli troops and police enlisted a "mystical" rabbi to help them hunt for Hizbollah tunnels stretching into Israel from Lebanon. The 50-year-old, known as Yehuda, is a follower of a mystic form of Judaism and joined security forces on intermittent patrols between 2013 and 2016. Officers said he seemed to be able to divine the location of tunnels, according to The Times of Israel, and one colonel filed a report advising his superiors to continue to seek help from him. However, the Israel Defence Force was not convinced and ordered a halt to the patrols. – © Telegraph Media Group Limited (2019)

Beheader up to his neck for ‘chamber pot’ stunt

A Taiwanese man who beheaded a statue of former strongman Chiang Kai-shek, saying he planned to use the severed head as a chamber pot, was sentenced to six months in prison on Thursday. Kuo Chih-kang was convicted on theft charges for sawing off the head of a Chiang statue inside a Taipei park and driving away with the loot in his truck in April 2017, the high court said. "I want to keep it as a memorabilia for my action on that day and take it back to be used as a chamber pot to express my anger" at Chiang, it quoted Kuo as saying. "I hope Taiwan will become an independent country soon … then I would donate the head to be displayed in public." The court ruled his actions were not protected by free speech, dismissing Kuo's argument that he was trying to promote "transitional justice." – AFP

Over and stout for the Irish

It's happy hour in Dublin and the drinks are flowing, but in Ireland's first "dry pub" patrons are forgoing Guinness and whiskey for non-boozy beers and 0% wine. The Virgin Mary bucks the trend in a city where nightlife is fuelled by stout and spirits, offering a menu of entirely non-alcoholic beverages. Thronging with customers within minutes of opening, its popularity is viewed by its owners as a sign that hard-drinking Ireland may be changing its ways. "Drinking is ingrained in society here," said co-founder Vaughan Yates, 51, a veteran of the drinks industry." However, if you look at the Irish they are a very progressive nation, they are a very liberal nation, they're very open to change. I think there's a real cultural shift happening globally towards alcohol and we're really at the forefront of it." – AFP



Riaan Stassen: Capitec built from scratch, and now what?

He launched unarguably the most innovative financial model in SA, and leaves with some trenchant thoughts

By Giulietta Talevi
4 min read

Massmart: Big daddy Walmart finally swaggers into town

Since shelling out $2.5bn for its African springboard in 2010, Walmart has been more of a silent shareholder

By Giulietta Talevi
1 min read

Desperate times as miners have to bail out municipalities

Housing, healthcare and service provision is a job for local governments, not the struggling mining sector

By Allan Seccombe
1 min read



Sweet rom slips into slick com in Charlize’s ‘Long Shot’

Theron and Seth Rogen bring something fresh to the romcom party, goosed along by quite a dash of raunch

By Tim Robey
4 min read

Tarantino at Cannes channels hype-master Hitchcock

Director echoes the old master’s plea for no spoilers, and takes a bow after a six-minute standing ovation

By Tymon Smith
3 min read

I could swear ‘Deadwood: The Movie’ is coming in May

It’s sure to be one hell of a fight, so be ready

By Tymon Smith
1 min read

Won’t you take us to the bioscope?

The films opening in our cinemas this week

By Critics’ choice
2 min read



SPORTS DAY: Not a lot left in the kitty for brittle Lions

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
4 min read
Sport FREE

To fly at this World Cup, we need superstars in the wings

And we've got them: Aiden Markram, Chris Morris, Dwaine Pretorius and Tabraiz Shamsi are raring to go

Telford Vice
3 min read