Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Zumaing Through South Africa

"ANC fails to form coalition in Johannesburg" by Norimitsu Onishi New York Times   August 18, 2016

JOHANNESBURG — In a continuing shake-up of South Africa’s political order, the long-governing African National Congress on Wednesday appeared at risk of losing power in Johannesburg, the nation’s commercial capital, after failing to form a coalition government.

The party, which received the most votes in the city in the Aug. 3 local elections but not enough to govern outright, was rebuffed in its efforts to build a coalition with the second-biggest opposition party, the Economic Freedom Fighters.

Calling the ANC “corrupt to the core,” the opposition party’s leader, Julius Malema, said in a news conference that the idea of a partnership had become untenable after the ANC rejected certain conditions, including the resignation of President Jacob G. Zuma.

Malema said the ANC would “not get a single vote” from his party.

Instead, Malema said his party would support the main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, though it would stop short of entering into a formal coalition with it. The Democratic Alliance’s leader, Mmusi Maimane, said in a separate news conference on Wednesday that discussions were proceeding with Malema to form a minority government in Johannesburg.

If the ANC is shut out of power in Johannesburg, it will find itself out of government in South Africa’s most important cities. The Democratic Alliance, which has long controlled Cape Town, is now poised to form a minority government in Pretoria.

Before the elections, the ANC held outright majorities in the country’s eight largest cities, except Cape Town.

“The picture has changed dramatically for the ANC — rapidly within one election,” said Ralph Mathekga, a political analyst. It has become, he said, “a rural party.”

The Economic Freedom Fighters, a radical, leftist party that received 8 percent of the vote nationwide, became kingmakers in Johannesburg and Pretoria after the Aug. 3 vote. The party was courted by the ANC, which needed its votes to form a coalition in Johannesburg, and by the Democratic Alliance, which won the most votes in Pretoria but fell short of a clear majority.

But the Economic Freedom Fighters, a 3-year-old party whose members wear red jumpsuits and berets, said on Wednesday that it preferred to remain in the opposition and would not join any coalition. Malema was once one of Zuma’s most fervent backers and formed his own party after being expelled from the ANC.

Malema has often expressed his admiration for President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, and has espoused the nationalization of mines and the expropriation of land from white South Africans without compensation.

He's no longer running the place.

On Wednesday, Malema said that the ANC under Zuma had become a corrupt party that protects “white capital.” He described the Democratic Alliance, a party established by white South Africans but now including many black leaders, as an organization of “white racists.” He said that the Democratic Alliance also protected “white capital” but that it was not corrupt.

“They are a better devil compared to the ANC,” he said.

Plays into the white man's burden bit, which I have never bought, but the whole situation brings to mind an old saying we have over here: the more things change, the more they remain the same (or get even worse).

Dissatisfied with Zuma’s scandal-ridden presidency and endemic corruption inside the ANC, many of the party’s traditional supporters voted for opposition parties, or simply stayed home. Reeling from the losses, party officials immediately said they would engage in “introspection.”

Turns out we have a lot in common with the South Africans.

But at the end of a four-day meeting of its top leaders, Gwede Mantashe, the party’s secretary-general, said on Sunday that officials had never considered asking for Zuma’s resignation.

The party received 54 percent of the vote nationwide early this month, its lowest share in any election since it assumed power after the end of apartheid in 1994. The decline in support was especially steep in the country’s urban areas, where many middle-class black voters rejected the party’s emotional appeals to its heroic past and instead made decisions based on good governance.

That only works for so long, and younger generations (rightly so) want to know what have you done for me lately?



South African Elections
Loud Protests 

Have to call out the, you know, then....

"South African police, students clash" Associated Press  October 10, 2016

JOHANNESBURG — One of South Africa’s top universities descended into violence on Monday, with police firing tear gas, rubber bullets, and water at stone-throwing students who are locked in a dispute with administrators and the government over demonstrators’ demands for free education.

Stun grenades boomed and gunshots crackled as police cleared protesters at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, the most prominent site of a student movement that recently shut other universities.

The demonstrations have prompted officials to warn that badly needed medics, engineers, and other skilled workers might not be able to graduate this year.

Jo Seoka, an Anglican bishop, said pandemonium erupted as students hurled rocks at security guards blocking the entrance to the Great Hall, prompting police vehicles to rumble forward.

Seoka, who joined an earlier student march, said police had ‘‘militarized’’ the campus, and he criticized them for not wearing IDs on their uniforms that would make them accountable.

As police helicopters circled, some protesters spilled into city streets. A bus was set on fire, and thick smoke billowed into the air. A Catholic priest who appealed for the violence to stop was struck in the mouth by a rubber bullet and was being treated, South African media reported.

The university accused students of throwing rocks ‘‘that could have maimed or killed people’’ and said protesters had responded to negotiation offers from the campus administration with threats.

I agree, violence is never the solution; however, I can certainly understand how some people reach that point.

Btw, ever hear of Chief Luthuli? Didn't think so.

At least 27 students were arrested Monday around the country. Several people were injured.


"South Africa says it will quit the international criminal court" by Kevin Sieff and Krista Mahr Washington Post  October 21, 2016

NAIROBI — South Africa announced Friday it planned to withdraw from the International Criminal Court, a major blow to an institution that has struggled to fulfill its role as an effective global seat of judgment for war crimes and other atrocities.

South Africa’s departure is particularly striking; the country became a symbol of justice and reconciliation with the election of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela more than two decades ago. Its announcement is a reflection of rising antagonism toward the court across sub-Saharan Africa.

That is because it is perceived -- and rightly so -- as a tool of racism.

The court was established in 2002, with jurisdiction over ‘‘the most serious crimes of concern to the international community,’’ according to its founding charter. But the majority of its indictments have been related to wars or political violence in Africa. Nine of its 10 current investigations involve countries on the continent. Those ratios have led a host of African leaders to denounce the court in rallies and at international meetings.

The court is basically being used to remove unfavorable leaders or a double-cross to tyrants supported in the past. 

The dynamic is strange, in a way. Here you have the Serbs and Cambodians as the token whites and Asians that have been brought before the court, with the rest Africans.

The chorus of African voices against the court, known as the ICC, has swelled recently. On Tuesday, Burundi’s president, Pierre Nkurunziza, signed a decree paving the way for his country to leave the court, just as ICC investigators were beginning an inquiry into a violent crackdown on government opponents there.

Maybe these guys see the writing on the wall when they leave so, you know.... 

The court, based at The Hague, has faced criticism for being ineffective, and it has gotten lukewarm support from some members. In 2009, the ICC issued an arrest warrant for Sudan’s president, Omar al-Bashir, accusing him of war crimes. But that hasn’t stopped Bashir from visiting a number of African nations, which have failed to detain him.

In June 2015, Bashir was in South Africa when a domestic judge ordered that the Sudanese leader be detained. But South African officials quietly allowed Bashir to return to Sudan, setting off a wave of criticism from human rights advocates.

I was just wondering when Bush, Bliar, Obama, Clinton, Trump, and the coterie of Israeli Cabinet officials are going to brought before the bar?

Isn't Sudan in crisis these days?

It was that case, and the subsequent debate about South Africa’s obligations as an ICC member, that led to the country’s decision to leave the court. South Africa’s government felt that the pressure to arrest those wanted by the court hurt its role ‘‘promoting peace, stability, and dialogue in those countries,’’ said Michael Masutha, the minister of justice and correctional services, on Friday.

South Africa’s minister of international relations, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, sent an official notification to the United Nations earlier this week that said the country will leave the court in one year.

That marks a striking departure from Mandela’s endorsement of the ICC in 1998, when he told a conference of diplomats and African leaders that previous conflicts or abuses ‘‘might not have occurred, or at least been minimized, had there been an effectively functioning International Criminal Court.’’

South Africa’s current president, Jacob Zuma, has been criticized for abandoning Mandela’s message of inclusion and his leadership on human rights issues. The country’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, said the ICC withdrawal was unconstitutional without parliamentary approval, and vowed to take the decision to court.

South Africa will join more than two dozen countries that are not members of the court, including the United States. The Pentagon has long been concerned that the international war crimes court could target US military personnel around the world.

OMG! They help set it up and then didn't join?! Nice way to indemnify yourself, wow.

RelatedICC prosecutors: US forces may have committed war crimes

Oh, there is a whole long laundry list of stuff going back decades now, through several and various administrations -- from the use of nuclear weapons to chemical defoliants and white phosphorous to depleted uranium right on through to authorized torture. 

Btw, won't be able to badger Russia about it, either.

Now, many human-rights activists worry that other countries will follow Burundi and South Africa in quitting the court.

‘‘We’re obviously concerned that this comes right after concrete steps taken by the government of Burundi to withdraw, and that this is broadly fitting into the collective narrative around withdrawal and dissatisfaction with the ICC,’’ said Netsanet Belay, Amnesty International’s research and advocacy director for Africa.


Interesting how the heat on Zuma didn't come until after that move.

"Zuma lawyers ask court to halt S. Africa graft ombudsman report" by Amogelang Mbatha and Mike Cohen Bloomberg News  November 02, 2016

JOHANNESBURG — Lawyers representing South African President Jacob Zuma urged the High Court to halt the release of a report of the nation’s graft ombudsman into allegations that the Gupta family, who are friends with the president, exercised undue influence over the government.

Zuma has argued that he hadn’t been given adequate opportunity to respond to findings made in the Public Protector’s report and question witnesses. His application is opposed by four political parties, including the Democratic Alliance and Economic Freedom Fighters.

‘‘There are procedural requirements that had not been followed by the Public Protector,’’ Anthea Platt, Zuma’s lawyer, told the court in Pretoria, the capital. She argued that opposition parties couldn’t infringe on Zuma’s rights and weren’t entitled to participate in the case.

The investigation relates to the dismissal and appointment of Cabinet ministers and board members and directors of state-owned companies and possibly corrupt influence in the awarding of state contracts and licenses to companies linked to members of the Gupta family. It was completed just days before Thuli Madonsela’s seven-year term as graft ombudsman came to an end and she was replaced by Busisiwe Mkhwebane, who didn’t oppose the bid to halt the report’s release.

‘‘What the president has lost sight of is that there is now a final report of the Public Protector,’’ alliance lawyer Etienne Labuschagne told the court. ‘‘There are no procedural rights of the president to be preserved. The only question is whether the report should be released or not and if released the president is free to challenge it on review in due course, but that is not an issue that is urgent.’’

Zuma has come under pressure to explain his ties with the Guptas, who he says are friends and are in business with his son, after government officials claimed the family tried to influence their decisions.


"South Africa watchdog report increases pressure on president" by Christopher Torchia Associated Press  November 03, 2016

JOHANNESBURG — President Jacob Zuma of South Africa faced growing calls to resign Wednesday after the release of a state report that found possible evidence of corruption at top levels of a government whose leader has been enmeshed in scandal.

It's an epidemic all across the Globe.

The report by a state watchdog agency came out as thousands of South Africans demonstrated for the removal of Zuma, who apologized earlier this year after the Constitutional Court said he flouted the law in a scandal over millions of dollars in state spending on his rural home.

While his citizens and subjects live in squalor.

A commission of inquiry should be established to investigate separate allegations centered on Zuma’s close relationship with the Guptas, a business family of Indian immigrants that has been accused of meddling in the government for its own financial benefit, according to the report by the state public protector’s office.

The commission would have six months to complete its findings and make recommendations, a process that could slow calls for Zuma to quit. Opposition parties, however, said they could push for a vote of no confidence in the president in coming weeks.

A similar vote earlier this year was rejected because the ruling African National Congress has a majority in parliament, though some ANC members have since become openly critical of Zuma. The president still has the support of some powerful factions in his party.

A key allegation centers on Zuma’s decision in December to abruptly fire Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and replace him with a relatively unknown figure, David van Rooyen. The move unsettled markets and prompted a national outcry, compelling the president to replace van Rooyen a few days later with Pravin Gordhan, who previously served as finance minister.

Allegations that the Gupta family knew Nene was going to be fired, as well as evidence that van Rooyen was at the Gupta home in Johannesburg at least seven times before his appointment as finance minister, are worrying, according to the public protector’s report.

It also cited allegations by the deputy finance minister, Mcebisi Jonas, that a Gupta brother had offered him the finance minister’s post while saying Zuma was aware of the offer. The president denied knowledge of any such offer.

‘‘Consequently the people of South Africa, who Deputy Minister Jonas took into his confidence in revealing this, would lose faith in open, democratic and accountable government if President Zuma’s denials are proven to be false,’’ said the report, noting that the executive branch should have investigated Jonas’ allegations.

Jonas alleged that the Gupta brother he met offered him $44 million ‘‘to be deposited in an account of his choice’’ and asked if Jonas ‘‘had a bag which he could use to receive and carry [$44,000] in cash immediately,’’ according to the report. It said Jonas declined the offer....

(Blog editor just shakes head)


"South African parliament defeats motion to remove president" by CHRISTOPHER TORCHIA Associated Press  November 11, 2016

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s parliament on Thursday defeated an opposition motion to remove President Jacob Zuma because of a series of scandals, including possible government corruption linked to the president and his associates.

The motion by South Africa’s biggest opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, was rejected by a vote of 214 to 126 after an often raucous debate in which rival lawmakers heckled and traded insults.

The ruling African National Congress party, which has a majority in the parliament, had said it would not support the opposition motion against Zuma, virtually ensuring its defeat. While some ANC members have urged Zuma to resign, it was unlikely that ruling party lawmakers would defy the party leadership to back the opposition move against the president.

‘‘The only time we ever talk about our constitution in this house is when we debate how our president violated it,’’ said Mmusi Maimane, leader of the Democratic Alliance.

Nomvula Mokonyane, the minister of water affairs and sanitation, said the opposition was trying to distract Zuma’s government from dealing with poverty and other pressing concerns....

That's the distraction there, that the government is dealing with those problems. They are the cause of those problems in many ways.


RelatedSouth African president in battle to continue in office

"South African lawmakers brawl during protest of president" by Christopher Torchia Associated Press  February 09, 2017

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s Parliament descended into chaos on Thursday, with opposition lawmakers denouncing President Jacob Zuma as a ‘‘scoundrel’’ and ‘‘rotten to the core’’ because of corruption allegations and then brawling with guards who dragged them out of the chamber.

That's real opposition, not the corporate, meet you at the watering hole $y$tem we got here.

The raucous scene unfolded on national television as opposition legislators tried to stop Zuma from addressing the chamber, repeatedly insulting the president and declaring him unfit for office. In the surrounding streets of Cape Town, police and hundreds of military forces patrolled to guard against protesters who want Zuma to quit.

Security teams were called into the chamber to remove red-clad members of the opposition Economic Freedom Fighters, some of whom threw punches at guards.

Lawmakers from the Democratic Alliance, the country’s biggest opposition group, then walked out in protest. Some members of the ruling African National Congress party heckled them as they left.

Zuma, who then started an annual address on the economy and other national matters, has faced calls to resign even within his own party.

These guys would hold on to an anchor if they were drowning.



ANC Rejects Calls for Jacob Zuma to Quit South African Presidency

ANC backs Jacob Zuma, papering over divisions in South Africa

South Africans protest scandal-tainted Zuma

He needs to be impeached.

"Anti-immigrant protests turn violent in South Africa" New York Times  February 25, 2017

JOHANNESBURG — Anti-immigrant protesters clashed with foreigners during a march in South Africa’s administrative capital, Pretoria, on Friday, and the police responded with rubber bullets, tear gas, and water cannons.

President Jacob Zuma appealed for calm and condemned the latest wave of anti-foreigner violence to grip South Africa in recent years.

“Many citizens of other countries living in South Africa are law-abiding and contribute to the economy of the country positively,” Zuma said.

“It is wrong to brand all nonnationals as drug dealers or human traffickers,” he said. “Let us isolate those who commit such crimes and work with government to have them arrested, without stereotyping and causing harm to innocent people.”

South Africa also has those problems?

Africans coming legally and illegally to South Africa, which has the continent’s most advanced economy, have been the focus of criticism and resentment and sometimes of violent attacks in recent years.

South Africans accuse migrants of stealing jobs or exploiting locals by running small businesses in poor, black townships. Others blame foreigners for the country’s high crime rates.

I'm sure they are just a bunch of racists.

The accusations, which are not backed up by official statistics, resonate in a country with a jobless rate of 27 percent and yawning income inequalities.

Meet the new bo$$, wor$e than the old bo$$!

The latest anti-immigrant violence began in a neighborhood south of Johannesburg called Rosettenville, where residents burned down a dozen houses that they said were being used by Nigerians as drug dens and brothels.

The attacks spread to other areas, including in Pretoria, where immigrant areas and businesses were targeted.


Cheap foreign labor in a black state simply proves that all governments are the same, and that the TRUE DIVIDING LINE is CLA$$, not all the other divisive race, gender, sex preference  age, religion, and anything else they can throw at you to keep your eye of the ball! 

RelatedChinese state-owned company to build car factory in South Africa

Also see:

South Africa faces turmoil after firing of finance minister

Ahmed Kathrada, South African anti-apartheid activist; at 87

South African rhino deaths drop for a second year amid record arrests

New HIV vaccine trial to start in South Africa

Search for HIV vaccine resumes with test in South Africa

I don't mean to needle you, but....

"The story of how ‘‘Patient Zero’’ and AIDS arrived in New York in 1979 and triggered the epidemic in North America has been told so many times in so many different ways that for many people it’s become an accepted truth of our modern history. It’s a compelling narrative, but it’s not quite right...."

My first reaction was why believe now, you f***s

The next was what's the latest lie now?