The last month of a troubled 2020 has begun with a flood of news. We look at the latest news and headlines heading into Wednesday 2 December.

Tuesday 1 December is commemorated as World Aids Day, and it is a day to remember the millions who have lost their lives to the disease – even in the midst of another pandemic that has preoccupied our actions and thoughts.

Covid-19 should not dull our attitude towards HIV and Aids. South Africa has made important strides in the fight against it, but there is more to be done. The South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) has revealed that women rape survivors were at greater risk of contracting HIV. In a country like ours grappling with a rape crisis, those revelations are frightening. Like with the current Covid-19, we cannot afford to be complacent about HIV and Aids.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance (DA) has casually accused President Cyril Ramaphosa of treason. Just another day in Mzansi.

TODAY’S LATEST NEWS IN SOUTH AFRICA, Wednesday 2 December 

REASON OR TREASON? RAMAPHOSA BLASTED BY DA

President Ramaphosa may be putting himself under a significant amount of pressure – after the government approached the courts to postpone an appeals process launched by several unions. The ANC’s top brass are now seeking to hammer out a ‘settlement’ for the public wage bill, in a move which has been compared to ‘treason’ by the DA.

There’s also a significant chance that Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will have his nose put out of joint by all of this. In October, he enforced the decision to freeze the public sector’s cumulative wage, sparking a fierce backlash from Cosatu. South Africa’s largest union even mulled pulling its support away from the ANC altogether.

As reported by Business Live, The state attorney confirmed that the government wanted him to approach all parties, and have them attend a hearing which entertained the idea of a postponement. Although it seems likely that Cosatu and their associates won’t agree to a settlement, the mere hint of an intervention has rankled Leon Schreiber.

The Shadow Public Service Minister launched a tirade against President Ramaphosa on Tuesday, slamming him for failing ‘his most critical test’. On two occasions, Schrieber stated that the head of state ‘was committing fiscal treason’ – by ignoring the direction set out by Tito Mboweni – to pursue an out-of-court agreement instead.

ZIMBABWE JET SCANDAL: DA CLAIMS NO MINUTES OF THE MEETING EXIST 

The Democratic Alliance (DA) said, on Tuesday, that there is no evidence of the meeting that took place between the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, and her counterpart in Zimbabwe back in September.

Mapisa-Nqakula got on board an airforce jet to travel to Harare to meet her Zimbabwean counterparts earlier this year. She also took an African National Congress (ANC) delegation with her which was not part of the agreement. The flight has since become a controversial topic whereby President Cyril Ramaphosa even requested a detailed report as to what happened. 

The minister was also instructed that all the money had to be paid back to the State with immediate effect.

KZN FARM MURDER: 80-YEAR-OLD SHOT DEAD

The community of Muden in KwaZulu-Natal has been left shell-shocked by a brutal farm murder, which has claimed the life of a well-loved pillar of the community. Mpozana Khumalo, aged 80, was subjected to a horrendous ordeal last week.

Political figures have since reacted with anger to this heinous act near the Mooi River, as details of the attack were made public on Tuesday. Mr. Khumalo was shown no mercy after he battled to stay alive while being treated in hospital:

  • Mpozana Khumalo went to check on his livestock. While assisting his son, he was confronted by attackers.
  • It’s understood he was apprehended and tied to a tree by the criminals.
  • While restrained, it has been reported that he was shot and left for dead. He spent three days fighting for his life.
  • Sadly, last Friday, Mpozana Khumalo was confirmed dead as a result of his injuries.

One person arrested over Matric exam leak – Motshekga

The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI), also known as the Hawks have made a breakthrough in the Matric exam leak, arresting one person, Minister Basic Education Angie Motshekga has said.

In an interview with eNCA on Tuesday, 1 December 2020, the minister said more details would be given at the end of the week.

“There is one arrest which has been made in Gauteng, which was linked to the physics paper. The Physics paper did not go far so we have not made the link with the Maths and Business Economics [papers] so that we would have linked them,” Motshekga said.

“The fact that we lost three papers shows that there was a hole in the system.”

It comes after the Basic Education Department met to receive the preliminary report into the leaked Matric exam question papers.

“Earlier today CEM deliberated on the report and noted that the investigation had not yet been completed and that more work still needed to be done,” the department said at the time.

John Steenhuisen: ‘Every aspect of the state needs reform’

South Africa needs to put to bed the ANC’s “doomed project” in the same way that the East Germans and the Soviets “eventually put to bed the failed ideology that had kept them trapped in poverty for so long”, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen has said. 

Speaking at the Cape Town Press Club on Tuesday 1 December, Steenhuisen said that South Africa remains hamstrung by social and economic problems that existed long before the first COVID-19 case was reported, and for this he blamed the failed promises of President Cyril Ramaphosa and his administration.

Upon claiming victory in the opposition party’s leadership elections last month, Steenhuisen vowed to return power to the people of South Africa, and continued this narrative as he analogised the problems in South Africa to those who suffered through the Soviet Union’s control.

“You need to start reforming every single aspect of the state by taking power away from government and putting more and more of it in the hands of the people,” he said. 

Springboks at the RWC 2023 draw | What’s the worst that could happen?

All eyes will turn to Paris on Monday, December 14 for the all-important pool draw for the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

The next major milestone on the road to the Springboks defending their World Cup title will take place virtually at the Palais Brongniart.

Twelve countries have automatically qualified for the next edition of the World Cup based on their top-three placings in each of the four pools at last year’s tournament.

Due to Covid-19 and the impact the pandemic has had on the sport in 2020, World Rugby has decided to base the seeds on the rankings as of January 1, 2020.

Therefore, those 12 countries, based on their rankings on New Year’s Day this year, have been placed into three bands of four teams each.

Struggling AmaZulu beat transfer deadline to sign 2 new players

Big-spending, but struggling, AmaZulu FC beat Monday’s transfer window deadline to sign two more players.

The KwaZulu-Natal side have called a media conference in Sandton at 14:00 on Tuesday to reveal their new acquisitions.

According to reports, they are set to announce the capture of Mamelodi Sundowns’ Phakamani Mahlambi and Chippa United goalkeeper Veli Mothwa.

Mahlambi’s move to Usuthu is expected to be a loan move, while Mothwa will join on a permanent basis.

AmaZulu are currently 10th in the DStv Premiership standings with five points after as many matches.

They will next be in action on Saturday, December 5 in an away fixture against TTM at the Thohoyandou Stadium at 18:00.

World champion Lewis Hamilton tests positive for Covid-19

World champion Lewis Hamilton has tested positive for coronavirus and will miss this weekend’s Sakhir Grand Prix in Bahrain, Formula One’s governing body FIA announced on Tuesday.

“In accordance with Covid-19 protocols and public health authority guidelines in Bahrain he (Hamilton) is now isolating,” said an FIA statement.

“The procedures set out by the FIA and Formula 1 will ensure no wider impact on this weekend’s event.”

Hamilton who on Sunday won the Bahrain Grand Prix, the first of back-to-back races in the Gulf state, has already secured a record-equalling seventh world championship this season.

LATEST WEATHER FORECAST, Wednesday 2 December   

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Horoscope today

Free daily horoscope, celeb gossip and lucky numbers for Wednesday 2 December.

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