Articles on South Africa 2016

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Supporters of Julius Malema’s Economic Freedom Fighters hold a mock coffin of the governing ANC during an election rally in 2014. Reuters/Skyler Reid

South Africa’s politicians must guard against killer narratives

Unscrupulous politicians are adept at using regressive story lines that feed insecurities. That could be dangerous ahead of South Africa's hotly-contested municipal elections.
A woman cheers during Freedom Day celebrations in South Africa. Reuters/Mujahid Safodien

South Africans take stock as the country celebrates Freedom Day

South Africa's transition to democracy was based on the values of inclusive politics, reconciliation, human rights and constitutionalism. Twenty-two years on, how has the country fared?
South Africa’s Constitutional Court has ruled that President Jacob Zuma failed in his duty to ‘uphold, defend and respect’ the Constitution. GCIS

Zuma court ruling: South Africans witness a massive day for democracy

The Constitutional Court judgment in the opposition's case against President Jacob Zuma represents the exercise of judicial authority and expertise at the highest level by international standards.
Finance minister Pravin Gordhan’s budget speech has put the ANC government’s plan to fight poverty and reduce inequality back in the spotlight. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

South Africa’s budget hits right notes but won’t stave off downgrade

Finance minister Pravin Gordhan would need President Zuma’s undivided support to drive bold economic reforms. But, signs suggest that he does not have such support and is undermined by the president.
South African finance minister Pravin Gordhan had to tread carefully to please many competing interests in his budget. shutterstock

South African finance minister forced to walk a difficult political tightrope

South Africa's finance minister means well, especially in his bid to cut public sector expenditure. But his success requires strong leadership and strategic alignment across the entire public sector.
South Africa’s Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan delivers his 2016 budget address to parliament in Cape Town. Reuters/Mike Hutchings

South Africa’s finance minister tackles wastage, boosts confidence

South Africa's finance minister delivered a good mix of macro and micro-economic strategies to ensure the country survives economic uncertainty, restores confidence and achieves some growth.
President Jacob Zuma delivers his State of the Nation address. Reuters/Schalk van Zuydam

South Africa’s president failed to touch the nerve of the nation

Jacob Zuma tried to cover everything under the sun in his State of the Nation address. The speech was not pivoted on an anchor. It was a collection of inputs from various government departments.
South Africa’s Jacob Zuma is president of the country as well as the African National Congress. He is under pressure on all fronts. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

Does President Zuma have the courage to do the right thing?

It is unlikely President Zuma will announce a structural changes in his State of the Nation Address. This, despite education being in dire need of fundamental restructuring and an economy in decline.
Environmental activists demand a fair climate change deal outside the United Nations Climate Change conference in South Africa recently. Reuters/Mike Hutchings

If Zuma cast himself as a climate emergency president and statesman, this is what he would say

The 2016 State of the Nation Address provides President Zuma with the ideal opportunity to be statesman-like. That would require bold action of his part, something that he is unlikely to do.

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