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South Africa’s ruling ANC gears for renewal

Former AU chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma says the on-going challenges in South Africa’s ruling African National Congress-ANC, are only signals for a renewal. But the country’s deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, recently accused of extra marital affairs, urged members to focus on solving challenges ANC supporters are facing. The embattled party has …

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Bangladesh vs South Africa সিরিজে লালকার্ড, রানআউট ও রিভিউসহ যে সব নতুন নিয়ম .sports news update

ক্রিকেটের আপডেট এবং ক্রিকেটের সব খেলার সমায় সুচি সবার আগে পেতে আমাদের চ্যানেলটিতে সাবক্রেইভ করুন…sports news update Our Google page.. source

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The Jacaranda FM Incident | South Africa

Link to my Merch: Be sure to leave a comment, share the video and subscribe! Subscribe on Youtube : Get in touch with me : Facebook : Twitter : Patreon: Instagram : Reddit : End Credit Music : source

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7 Leading Real Estate Companies in South Africa

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South Africa’s real estate market has had a tough few years. Economists have speculated that 2016 was the worst performing year for residential property since at least 2012. The socio-political landscape and economic climate have also done little to alleviate the pressure. South Africans are looking for safe investments, and property remains one of the safest ways to...

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Makhosi Khoza to boycott disciplinary proceedings – News24

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News24Makhosi Khoza to boycott disciplinary proceedingsNews24Durban – ANC MP Makhosi Khoza on Friday said she will not be attending her ANC KwaZulu-Natal disciplinary hearing set for Sunday following a High Court ruling declaring the party's provincial leadership invalid. Khoza's previous disciplinary hearing, ...Opposition must butt out of KZN violenceIndependent OnlineKhoza says disciplinary action against her is null

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A look at SA-Zim relations (Mugabe slams Mandela again)

Recently a few unsavoury words have been exchanged between South Africa and Zimbabwe. While these exchanges have not been at a formal, and government level, the two countries have seen a few remarks by those in power. First it was reported that President Mugabe criticised Nelson Mandela for securing political …

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Liberia: Why Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Is No Feminist Icon

Photo: GCIS

President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf arrives in South Africa for a state visit (file photo).

analysisBy Robtel Neajai Pailey, University of Oxford

When Liberians go to the polls in October 2017, there will be a disproportionate number of men on the ballot papers. Only 163 of 1026 approved candidates - just 16% - in these presidential and legislative elections are women. This represents only a marginal increase since 2005 and 2011, when women accounted for 14% and 11% of candidates, respectively.

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf - who, 12 years ago, became the first woman to be elected head of state in any African country - has often been hailed as a feminist icon. But the poor representation of women in elections is as much her fault as it is a reflection of Liberia's acutely patriarchal political system.

Her presidency has actually served the interests of a small, elite group of women and men in politics. It has upheld the country's long-standing patriarchal norms. She has publicly distanced herself from the very movement that first got her elected, decrying feminism as "extremism".

Sirleaf's brand of femocracy - a term coined by Nigerian feminist scholar Amina Mama - has severely stifled women's political participation.

Mama, whose research focused on African first ladies as femocrats, makes an important distinction between feminism and femocracy. She argues that while feminism attempts to shatter the political glass ceiling, femocracy deliberately keeps it intact. This remains true even though, some decades on from her original writing, the continent can now boast of women presidents like Sirleaf and former Malawian head of state Joyce Banda.

Women in Liberian politics

Sirleaf has been conspicuously silent about bolstering women's roles in politics, apart from a recent public statement in which she vowed to campaign actively for female candidates in these elections.

There have been some legislative efforts to involve more women in Liberia's political leadership, with minimal to no input from Sirleaf.

A 2014 elections law amendment encouraged political parties to increase their representation of women in leadership roles. Yet Sirleaf's own Unity Party- with only 10 women out of 58 candidates on its roster - ranks below smaller, less prominent parties in fronting female candidates this year. The United People's Party, for instance, has 17 women candidates out of a total 64.

Elsewhere on the continent Rwanda, Senegal and South Africa have implemented gender equity bills specifically to propel women to high public office. In 2010 the Liberian women's legislative caucus sponsored an act which mandated that women should occupy at least 30% of political party leadership. The act would also have set up a trust fund to finance women's electoral campaigns.

Sirleaf did not actively support the proposed law and it was never ratified.

She has also failed women when it comes to her own high-level political appointments. Only four of her current 21 cabinet officials are women - and none of them occupy strategic ministries like defence, finance, education or public works.

Nepotism has been a problem on her watch, too: Sirleaf has appointed three of her sons to top government positions.

A few successes, but...

This is not to say that Sirleaf's two terms in office have left women completely high and dry.

Her administration has built or renovated hundreds of markets across the country for thousands of female informal traders called "market women".

She has also instituted policies to protect women and girls from male aggression. Under her rule, Liberia has implemented the most comprehensive anti-rape law in Africa. A fast-track special court has been established to deal specifically with gender based violence.

Unfortunately, a decade after it was opened, the court remains only in the capital city, Monrovia. This makes it inaccessible to most Liberian women.

And the person who heads the court, Serena Garlawolu, has gone on record endorsing female genital mutilation. Garlawolu says the practice "is not a violation of anyone's rights culturally". Liberian women's rights activists petitioned to criminalise the harmful procedure. But the proposed ban was omitted from a recently passed Domestic Violence Act.

Gender equity

Sirleaf's record over the past 12 years demonstrates that gender equity is not magically achieved when a woman occupies a country's highest political office. This is borne out by countless other examples, including Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May in England, Indira Gandhi in India, Dilma Rousseff in Brazil and Julia Gillard in Australia.

The international media and Sirleaf's supporters continue to hoist her up as the matron of women's rights in Africa. However, she does not deserve this title. The evidence of this will be glaringly obvious in the October election results.

This article was co-authored with Korto Reeves Williams, a Liberian feminist and a strategic civil society leader in Liberia and the sub-region. It is based on a piece that was originally published by Al Jazeera English.

Disclosure statement

Robtel Neajai Pailey does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond the academic appointment above.

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Cape Town Neighbourhoods and How They Got Their Names


Bordered by the cold Atlantic Ocean and adorned by one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Table Mountain, Cape Town is one of South Africa‘s oldest cities and prime tourist destinations.  According to oral tradition that has been passed on from generation to generation, its early inhabitants were the Khoisan populations, who called the area ”//Hui !Gaeb”, meaning “where ...

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Two South African fintech companies aim to change the payment space

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Sureswipe’s MD Paul Kent and Traderoot’s CEO, Eugene von Engelhardt. Traderoot and Sureswipe, two of South Africa’s first financial technology companies, announced on Tuesday 12 September 2017 that the companies have entered into a strategic business relationship that they claim will change the fintech payment space. Traderoot and Sureswipe have made available a quick, comprehensive and PCI compliant payment platform that reverses the relationship SMEs and merchants have with traditional financial institutions and places control of business processes in their own hands. Sureswipe’s MD Paul Kent said that this new approach to payment transactions is set to disrupt the current mindset of the industry, as merchants no longer have to be locked into...

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Johannesburg Neighbourhoods and How They Got Their Names

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Affectionately known as the “City of Gold”, or Egoli in isiZulu, Johannesburg is South Africa’s largest city by population, and it is the urban and economic hub of the country. It was founded during the gold rush of 1886 in the Witwatersrand (hence the nickname City of Gold) and rapidly transformed from a tented camp in 1886, to a fully-fledged town with mortar...

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Zuma: Youth must be vocal to ‘get our land back’ – News24

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News24Zuma: Youth must be vocal to 'get our land back'News24President Jacob Zuma said the ANCYL should lead the fight for economic freedom. (Mxolisi Mngadi, News24). Multimedia · User Galleries · News in Pictures Send us your pictures · Send us your stories. What To Read Next. Khoza 'playing to the gallery' in ...Zuma wants 'serious' Mangaung talksIndependent OnlineWATCH LIVE: President Jacob Zuma addresses ANCYL KZN 73rd

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