How SAA shot down its rivals with taxpayer money

Posted 05 October 2015

Competition never sat easy with SAA, which used R30 billion in taxpayer-funded bailouts over the last decade to shut down a string of competitors, from Sun Air to Trek and tiny Flitestar. No competitor was too small to overlook. Now its demons have come to haunt it in the form of two court challenges that could cost the airline over R6 billion in damages.

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Credit blacklisting at an all-time high

Posted 05 October 2015

The SA Communist Party has come out swinging against profiteering financial institutions over recent news that 11m out of 19m South Africans with access to credit are over-indebted.

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Why state enterprises will never be fixed

Posted 30 September 2015

State-owned enterprises can never succeed no matter who runs them, argues Leon Louw of the Free Market Foundation, because the normal disciplines of the market are absent. Managers will serve their political masters, knowing they will be fired if they don't. 

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DA welcomes move to decriminalise defamation

Posted 22 September 2015

The ANC seems to be softening its stance on criminal defamation. The ANC and its partners stood firmly behind the criminalisation of defamation to protect the reputation of President Jacob Zuma, but perhaps realises this is a lost cause and antipathetic to free speech.

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US Justice Department sets sights on Wall Street executives

Posted 21 September 2015

The US Justice Department, stung by criticism that it let Wall Street executives off the hook by allowing their employers to pay fines, has now taken off the gloves. New rules issued to prosecutors require them to focus on individual employees in their investigations, which means more executives could spend time in jail.

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Citizens' confidence in state sinks to new low

Posted 21 September 2015

South Africans' confidence in the state is melting away, as shown by rising service protests, lower voter turnout and surveys which show the majority of people believe the country is headed in the wrong direction.

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Copyright bill is the latest in a litany of oppressive laws

Posted 21 September 2015

SA is becoming more authoritarian by the day as shown by recent amendments to the Copyright Act. These amendments will override writers' and artists' copyright on their death and vest their rights with the state. The rot started with mining and has now jumped the fence to copyright.

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Zuma's misfit ministers stifle economy

Posted 18 September 2015

President Jacob Zuma is unschooled in economics and could care less. This shows in his selection of ministers who send wildly conflicting messages about how to grow the economy - from nuclear power stations to banning cigarette branding and mining. It's all a horrible mess.

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My Vote Counts smells something fishy over Gupta tenders

Posted 16 September 2015

Jacob Zuma My Vote Counts questions whether a recent tender won by a company controlled by the Gupta family to supply coal to Eskom is payback for political favours rendered to the ANC. The Gupta family is well known as a major source of funding for the ANC.  

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False alarm over dual citizenship ban

Posted 11 September 2015

Reports that the ANC was considering a blanket ban on dual citizenship were put to rest this week by home affairs mininster Malusi Gigaba. Despite concerns that some South Africans were fighting in the Israeli Defence Force, the banning of dual citizenship would not target certain people or countries.

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Africa: why economists get it wrong

Posted 08 September 2015

Africa: Why economists get it wrong by Morten Jerven challenges a number of common myths about Africa, particularly the notion that Africa has ever stopped growing. This false assumption arises because economists are using bad data or simply looking in the wrong areas.

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2 recent judgments that restore hope in the judiciary

Posted 02 September 2015

Noseweek highlights two recent judgments that give cause for hope. One where the judge ordered a half-built building in Durban to be demolished, and another where the judge slammed delaying tactics and abuse of police and private investigators by deep-pocketed litigators. 

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40 odd years prophesying the end for SA

Posted 01 September 2015

Rian Malan reviews RW Johnson's book, How Long Will South Africa Survive: The Looming Crisis. Johnson first published this book in 1977, predicting that economic and moral pressure would defeat apartheid, not the ANC's armed struggle. Turns out he was dead right. Will he be right this time with his dire prediction for SA?

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No act of reform can reverse the slide in SA's fortunes

Posted 23 August 2015

South Africans hope that a change in leadership of the ANC or a miraculous act of reform with reverse the downward trajectory of the country. RW Johnson, author and Emeritus Fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford, explains why this will not happen.

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National Prosecuting Authority has become a political football

Posted 23 August 2015

The new director of the NPA, Shaun Abrahams, has revealed his hand in backing Nomgcobo Jiba. (Madelene Cronje, M&G)Nomgcobo Jiba of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has had a charmed life under the apparent protection of President Jacob Zuma, who many believe she is protecting - in return - from prosecution. The political interference in the NPA is legendary and this week just got a whole lot worse, says the Mail & Guardian.

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White expat South Africans returning in record numbers

Posted 19 August 2015

A total of 400,000 white expat South Africans have returned to the country of their birth since the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008. And despite affirmative action quotas that give preferences to black South Africans, they seem to have little trouble getting jobs.

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Swift action needed to prevent SA's slide down the rocky road to ruin

Posted 18 August 2015

Is government finally waking up to the policy mess it has created in sectors such as mining and tourism?  Frans Cronje, CEO of the SA Institute of Race Relations, believes there is a glimmer of hope that may prevent the country sliding into the worst possible outcome - what he calls the rocky road. 

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Own goal of the year: SA's new visa rules cripple tourism

Posted 13 August 2015

SA's new visa rules requiring tourists to supply biometric data has proven a bridge too far for many. The latest stats show a massive drop in the number of visitors from our supposed partners in the Brics countries, who decided to spend their money in friendlier countries.

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Political analyst: SA could explode at any time

Posted 12 August 2015

While the media and public obsess over Nkandla, whether Cyril Ramaphosa will be the next president of SA and other issues, the country faces a far deeper crisis - massive youth unemployment being just one of them, according to political analyst Aubrey Matshiqi.

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5 out of 5 securitisation audits suggest the banks have been, well, less than honest

Posted 09 August 2015

5 out of 5 securitisation audits so far concluded suggest the banks have been less than honest with their customers. In all five cases, the audits suggest the mortgage loans have ended up in Asia. 

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This isn't government, this is drivel

Posted 04 August 2015

Politicians are not renowned for eloquence or truth telling, but recent statements from ANC luminaries are pure drivel. Like Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi blaming "neo-liberalism" for his ministry's cock-ups, or ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe telling mining companies not to lay off workers just because they can't afford to keep them.

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Lessons for SA from South America

Posted 04 August 2015

A tourist takes a photograph of the city from Cerro de Monserrate in Bogota, Colombia, on Tuesday, June 16, 2015. Colombia's fiscal deficit will widen next year to the most since 2010 amid lower crude prices, according to the government's latest financial plan. Photographer: Cassi Alexandra/BloombergTwo South American countries - Colombia and Venezuela - offer lessons in governance that we would do well to heed. Colombia is now one of the fastest growing economies in South America. Venezuela, ravaged by a drop in oil prices, is moving in the opposite direction.

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Did SA man mastermind the world's biggest Ponzi scheme?

Posted 02 August 2015

Cobus Kellerman.JPG
A Miami-based website that exposes investment fraud and Ponzi schemes has put out a warning about Mauritius-based Belvedere Management, which is partly owned by South African Cobus Kellerman, for falsely inflating its investment returns.

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To save lions like Cecil, let hunters have their way

Posted 30 July 2015

The killing of Cecil the Hwange lion by a US dentist is tragic, but what we really need is protection from the wildlife lobby and its counter-productive lobbying for bans on the trade in animal parts. Europeans telling Africans how to run their wildlife resources has yielded a surge in trade for illegal rhino horn. 

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"Unconstitutional" Expropriation bill will spook investors

Posted 28 July 2015

The draft Expropriation Bill gives government the right to expropriate land in what it deems is the public interest, paying "just and equitable" compensation. The Bill has been attacked by the banking association and the SA Institute of Race Relations.

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