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  • Mnangagwa pledges reforms to promote democracy
    Mnangagwa pledges reforms to promote democracy luntu.lamani Sat, 12/15/2018 - 18:47
    Teaser Media
    File: Zimbabwe’s president-elect, Emmerson Mnangagwa.
    Paragraphs
    File: Zimbabwe’s president-elect, Emmerson Mnangagwa.

    File: Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

     

    ESIGODINI, Zimbabwe - President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Saturday pledged to reform his party and promote democracy in his closing address to the ruling Zanu-PF's annual conference.

    In a speech that marked the latest move in efforts to end his country's international isolation, he told delegates: "We are in the process of reforming our party.

    READ: Zimbabwe's Mnangagwa tells investors ZANU-PF will remain in power

    "We should further entrench the rule of law and constitutionalism in the party and the country," he told the conference at the farming town of Esigodini, 400 kilometres (250 miles) from the capital Harare.

    Some 6,000 delegates endorsed Mnangagwa as the party's candidate in the next presidential elections, due in 2023.

    Mnangagwa and the ruling party are trying to distance themselves from the 37-year rule of his predecessor Robert Mugabe.

    READ: Zanu-PF extend olive branch to opposition

    That period, marked by corruption and mismanagement, led to an exodus of investors, economic sanctions, mass emigration and collapse of many public services. 

    Mnangagwa promised to revive the ruined economy after he narrowly won last July's presidential election, although opposition leader Nelson Chamisa insists he was cheated of victory.

    Soldiers shot at least six civilians during post-election protests. A commission of inquiry into the post-election violence is due to release its findings next week.

    The landlocked country is still struggling with shortages of fuel, medicines and basic foodstuffs.

    Read more »
  • Carnage on SA roads as festive season starts
    Carnage on SA roads as festive season starts travis Sat, 12/15/2018 - 17:29
    Teaser Media
    web_photo_traffic_18112018
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    JOHANNESBURG - It's been a bloody weekend on some of the country's roads as traffic volumes increase for the holiday season.

    READ: Motorists warned as festive season kicks off

    In the Western Cape, nearly 20 fatalities have been reported since Saturday.

    READ: Twelve dead in Cape Town taxi crash

    Meanwhile, four people, among them a child, have died on the N3 near Bergville Toll Plaza in KwaZulu-Natal.

    Read more »
  • Santaco urges safe driving from taxi, bus drivers
    Santaco urges safe driving from taxi, bus drivers travis Sat, 12/15/2018 - 16:34
    Teaser Media
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    JOHANNESBURG - Santaco President Phillip Taaibosch has urged taxi and bus drivers to drive safely, especially on long distances.

    Taaibosch, together with Transport Minister Blade Nzimande and Gauteng Transport MEC, visited Johannesburg's Park Station and Wanderers taxi rank to wish commuters well on their trips as the festive season begins.

    READ: Nzimande pleads with drivers this festive season

    Some commuters have been waiting hours for buses to take them home.

    The plea is clear from commuters and transport officials - be safe, obey the rules of the road, and arrive alive.

    Read more »
  • Turkey won't 'give up' on Khashoggi murder probe: minister
    Turkey won't 'give up' on Khashoggi murder probe: minister luntu.lamani Sat, 12/15/2018 - 15:42
    Teaser Media
    File: The 59-year-old Jamal Khashoggi, a palace insider turned critic of the Saudi regime, was strangled and his body cut into pieces by a 15-strong Saudi hit squad, according to Turkish officials.
    Paragraphs
    File: The 59-year-old Jamal Khashoggi, a palace insider turned critic of the Saudi regime, was strangled and his body cut into pieces by a 15-strong Saudi hit squad, according to Turkish officials.

    File: The 59-year-old Jamal Khashoggi, a palace insider turned critic of the Saudi regime, was strangled and his body cut into pieces by a 15-strong Saudi hit squad, according to Turkish officials.

    DOHA, Qatar - Turkey's foreign minister said Saturday his country would "not give up" on finding out the truth about the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul.

    "We haven't received any new information or outcome of the investigation from the Saudi side," Mevlut Cavusoglu said on the sidelines of a conference in Turkish ally Qatar.

    READ: Saudi Arabia admits critic Khashoggi killed in Istanbul consulate

    "Turkey will not give up on this, we will go to the end."

    Earlier this month, the minister said Turkey was in talks over a possible United Nations investigation into the October 2 murder, which has provoked global outrage.

    READ: Murder of Khashoggi a 'repulsive incident': Saudi crown prince

    The 59-year-old Khashoggi, a palace insider turned critic of the Saudi regime, was strangled and his body cut into pieces by a 15-strong Saudi hit squad, according to Turkish officials.

    The US Senate gave its unopposed backing on Thursday to a resolution holding the kingdom's de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, responsible for the murder after the Central Intelligence Agency reportedly concluded he gave the orders.

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that the killing was ordered at the highest levels of the Saudi government, although he has repeatedly absolved the ageing King Salman.

    Read more »
  • Nzimande pleads with drivers this festive season
    Nzimande pleads with drivers this festive season Vusi Sat, 12/15/2018 - 14:33
    Teaser Media
     Transport Minister Blade Nzimande wants fewer deaths on the road this year.
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     Transport Minister Blade Nzimande wants fewer deaths on the road this year.

    Transport Minister Blade Nzimande wants fewer deaths on the road this year.

    JOHANNESBURG - As the festive season begins, Transport Minister Blade Nzimande is pleading with drivers to be vigilant.

    Nzimande wants fewer deaths this year.

    The road death toll over last year's festive season decreased to 1,527, an 11-percent improvement on the previous year. 

    READ: 60% of SA roads are in poor condition: report

    Nzimande spoke to taxi and bus drivers at Johannesburg's Park Station and Wanderers taxi rank on Friday.

    The plea is clear from commuters and transport officials – be safe, obey the rules of the road, and arrive alive.

    Read more »
  • Paris protests enter fifth weekend
    Paris protests enter fifth weekend donald2 Sat, 12/15/2018 - 14:31
    Teaser Media
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    Protesters wearing yellow vests kneel during a demonstration by the "yellow vests" movement in Paris, France, December 15, 2018. 

    PARIS - Thousands of protesters took to the streets of French cities on Saturday in the fifth weekend of nationwide demonstrations against Emmanuel Macron's government, despite calls to hold off after a shooting in Strasbourg earlier this week.

    In Paris, police were out in force to contain possible outbursts of violence. But several major stores, such as the Galeries Lafayette, were open to welcome Christmas shoppers.

    On the Champs-Elysees, a handful of topless activists from the feminist protest group Femen faced security forces a few meters away from the Elysee Palace, the president's residence.

    The Interior Minister said around 69,000 police officers were active on Saturday with a reinforced presence in the cities of Toulouse, Bordeaux and Saint-Etienne.

    READ: 'Yellow Vests' protests continue in Paris

    On Friday, President Macron called for a return to calm in France after nearly a month of protests by the so-called 'yellow vest' movement against his government's policies. The demonstrations have hit growth and caused widespread disruption.

    "France needs calm, order and a return to normal," Macron said, after a meeting of European Union leaders in Brussels.

    The 'yellow vest' movement started in mid-November with protests at junctions and roundabouts against fuel tax increases, but quickly became a wider mobilisation against Macron's economic policies.

    Successive weekends of protests in Paris have lead to vandalism and violent clashes with security forces.

    In a televised address to the nation on Monday, Macron announced wage rises for the poorest workers and tax cuts for pensioners in further concessions meant to end the movement but many said they would maintain pressure.

    The government, as well as several unions and opposition politicians also called on protesters to stay off the streets on Saturday, after four people were killed in a gun attack at a Christmas market in the historic city of Strasbourg.

    Read more »
  • Family demands answers after loved one buried by wrong family
    Family demands answers after loved one buried by wrong family Vusi Sat, 12/15/2018 - 11:15
    Teaser Media
    Aldred Beukes – originally from Keimoes in the Northern Cape – was found dead on Cape Town’s Sandy Bay beach in January 2015.
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    A bereft Northern Cape family has been waiting for more than two years to bury their son. They're accusing the police of incompetence after their loved one’s body was given to the wrong family for burial. Courtesy #DStv403

    JOHANNESBURG - A bereft Northern Cape family has been waiting for more than two years to bury their son.

    They are accusing the police of incompetence after their loved one’s body, was given to the wrong family for burial.

    Aldred Beukes – originally from Keimoes in the Northern Cape – was found dead on Cape Town’s Sandy Bay beach in January 2015.

    With his family so far away, identifying him was difficult but police believed the badly decomposed body was of another missing man, who they handed over to that family, and was buried. 

    Only afterwards, fingerprints taken while the body was at a state mortuary identified the deceased as Beukes.

    READ: Twelve dead in Cape Town taxi crash 

    It was only in 2017 that Beukes’ family heard that he was dead
and that he had already been buried. 

    For more than a year, the family waited for the body to be exhumed.

    eNCA has seen email correspondence between the SAPS, Health Department
and a family representative to have the body dug up.

    A DNA test showed a 99 percent match with Beukes’ mother but their problems didn’t end there.

     So far it has been almost three months since the exhumation, with the body yet to be handed over to the family.

    eNCA report Lester Kiewit has more the story in the video above.

    Read more »
  • Twelve dead in Cape Town taxi crash
    Twelve dead in Cape Town taxi crash donald2 Sat, 12/15/2018 - 10:20
    Teaser Media
    Four people were injured, two critically, when a minibus taxi crashed into a wall in Strand Street in the Cape Town CBD on Sunday evening.
    Paragraphs
    Four people were injured, two critically, when a minibus taxi crashed into a wall in Strand Street in the Cape Town CBD on Sunday evening.

    Four people were injured, two critically, when a minibus taxi crashed into a wall in Strand Street in the Cape Town CBD on Sunday evening.

    JOHANNESBURG - 12 people have been killed in a taxi crash near Touwsriver in the Western Cape.

    Three of the dead are children.

    READ: Motorists warned as festive season kicks off

    It's believed the taxi with 22 passengers was travelling towards Cape Town.

    It overturned in the early hours this morning and no other vehicles were involved.

     

    Read more »
  • US federal judge rules Obamacare unconstitutional
    US federal judge rules Obamacare unconstitutional Vusi Sat, 12/15/2018 - 07:00
    Teaser Media
    An Obamacare logo is shown on the door of the UniVista Insurance agency in Miami, Florida on January 10, 2017. 
    Paragraphs
    An Obamacare logo is shown on the door of the UniVista Insurance agency in Miami, Florida on January 10, 2017. 

    File: An Obamacare logo is shown on the door of the UniVista Insurance agency in Miami, Florida on January 10, 2017. 

    WASHINGTON - A federal judge in Texas on Friday ruled the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, was unconstitutional based on its mandate requiring that people buy health insurance, a decision in a case that could reach the US Supreme Court.

    US District Judge Reed O'Connor in Fort Worth agreed with a coalition of 20 states that a change in tax law last year eliminating a penalty for not having health insurance invalidated the entire Obamacare law.

    The coalition of states challenging the law was led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel, both Republicans.

    Republicans have opposed the 2010 law - the signature domestic policy achievement of Republican President Donald Trump's Democratic predecessor Barack Obama - since its inception and have repeatedly tried and failed to repeal it.

    O'Connor ruled that under the logic of the landmark 2012 Supreme Court ruling that upheld the law, the individual mandate, which required that most Americans obtain health insurance or pay a tax, is now unconstitutional.

    In the 2012 ruling, a majority of the justices concluded that the individual mandate unconstitutionally imposed a requirement that Americans buy insurance.

    However, a different majority held the mandate amounted to a constitutional tax penalty.

    READ: National health insurance 'misunderstood

    On Friday, O'Connor ruled that after Trump signed a $1.5-trillion (R21.6-trillion) tax bill passed by Congress last year that eliminated the penalties, the individual mandate could no longer be considered constitutional.

    He said because the individual mandate was an "essential" part of Obamacare, the entire law, rather than just the individual mandate, was unconstitutional.

    "In some ways, the question before the Court involves the intent of both the 2010 and 2017 Congresses," he wrote.

    "The former enacted the ACA. 

    The latter sawed off the last leg it stood on."

    O'Connor's decision was issued the day before the end of a 45-day sign-up period for 2019 health coverage under the law.

    READ: #Me1st asks men to prioritise their sexual health

    About 11.8 million consumers nationwide enrolled in 2018 Obamacare exchange plans, according to the US government's Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

    A spokeswoman for California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who was among a group of Democratic attorneys general defending the law, said they would appeal the decision.

    An appeal would go to the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals.

    White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said in a statement the law would remain in place pending its expected appeal to the Supreme Court.

    Trump hailed the ruling and called on Congress to act. 

    "Now Congress must pass a STRONG law that provides GREAT healthcare and protects pre-existing conditions," Trump said in a tweet.

    US Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said he hoped the decision would be overturned.

    "If this awful ruling is upheld in the higher courts, it will be a disaster for tens of millions of American families, especially for people with pre-existing conditions," Schumer said in a statement.

    In June, the Justice Department partially sided with the Republican state attorneys general, agreeing that the individual mandate must be struck down as unconstitutional but arguing several other provisions could survive.

     

    Read more »
  • Ramaphosa receives final report into SARS
    Ramaphosa receives final report into SARS travis Sat, 12/15/2018 - 06:45
    Teaser Media
    File: President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the SALGA Members National Assembly on Wednesday.
    Paragraphs

    President Cyril Ramaphosa has received the final report of the Nugent Commission into Sars. Ramaphosa is studying the report and will apply his mind to its detailed recommendations. The final report follows an interim report submitted in October. Reporter Heidi Giokos has been following the story and joins us now. Courtesy #DStv403

    JOHANNESBURG - President Cyril Ramaphosa has received the final report of the Nugent Commission into Sars.

    READ: Kingon's term at SARS extended

    Ramaphosa is studying the report and will apply his mind to its detailed recommendations.

    The final report follows an interim report submitted in October.

    Read more »