Latest blog articles
South Africa's Zuma faces no-confidence vote by top ANC committee
PRETORIA (Reuters) - South Africa's scandal-plagued President Jacob Zuma faces a no confidence vote on Monday by the ANC's National Executive Committee (NEC), with at least three of his cabinet ministers turning against him, local media reported.
The NEC, which can remove Zuma from office, extended a scheduled weekend meeting into a third day on Monday after Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom proposed the no-confidence motion on Saturday, the Afrikaans-language daily Beeld said.
Two more cabinet members - Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi and Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi - have since joined Hanekom in asking Zuma to step down, News24 reported.
NEC members were locked in a "fiery and fierce" debate over whether a secret ballot should be used, Beeld reported, citing unnamed sources who had attended the meeting.
One senior ANC official, who asked to remain anonymous, said Zuma would probably manage to survive the latest attempt to dislodge him by the growing number of ANC figures unhappy with his leadership.
"Even if there's secret ballot, he's still likely to get the numbers," the official told Reuters.
An ANC spokesman did not respond to telephone calls seeking comment. In a statement on Sunday, the ANC did not give a reason for the extension of the meeting.
Analysts said Hanekom's motion was even less likely to succeed if Zuma's allies managed to secure an open vote, one of the main ways he has controlled the party during his seven years in charge.
"Without a secret ballot, the Hanekom motion is doomed – the regrouped pro-Zuma faction will whip its superior numbers in the NEC into an effective wall against the motion," NKC African Economics said in a note.
The NEC, which is meeting in the capital, Pretoria, is the only body in the ruling party that can remove the leader of the party, besides its five-yearly congress.
Zuma himself is one of the committee's 104 members, most of which were elected alongside the president in 2012.
Zuma's presidency has been plagued by scandal and the nation's anti-graft watchdog this month asked for a judge to investigate alleged influence-peddling by a wealthy family Zuma has called his friends.
Zuma has denied any wrongdoing.
(Reporting by TJ Strydom and Ed Cropley; Editing by Ed Cropley)
Teachers, music lovers among those killed in warehouse fire
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Teachers, music lovers and the son of a sheriff's deputy were among those killed when a fire tore through a converted Oakland warehouse during a dance party.The death toll from Friday night's fire climbed to 36 on Monday with more bodies still feared buried in the rubble.The victims included 17-year-olds and people from Europe and Asia, Alameda County Sheriff's Sgt. Ray Kelly said. Here's a closer look at who they were:EXTRAORDINARY CO-WORKERNick Gomez-Hall, 25, made a… chat_bubble_outline Read More...
Death toll rises to 20 in Pakistan shipbreaking blast
Quetta (Pakistan) (AFP) - The death toll from a recent explosion and fire at a Pakistan shipbreaking yard has risen to 20, officials said Saturday, as an inquiry committee met for the first time to determine responsibility.At least 59 others were wounded early this week when a gas cylinder exploded and started a fire inside an oil tanker at the Gadani yard in the southwestern province of Balochistan."The death toll has now risen to 20," Muhammad Hashim, commissioner of Kalat region of which… chat_bubble_outline Read More...
Consumer prices up 0.13% in July: statistical agency
Prices climbed 2.39% year on year and 2.48% compared with December 2015, the GSO said, adding that the average consumer price index in the first seven months of 2016 rose 1.82% over the same period last year. Among the 11 groups of goods used to calculate inflation, five witnessed price increases during the said month, with transport costs posting the largest growth of 1.19% as a result of higher fuel costs and railway fare hikes. The utility services and building materials group rose 0.14%… chat_bubble_outline Read More...
In downtrodden Flint, voting for a better future
Flint (United States) (AFP) - Flint, Michigan made global headlines as a city blighted by a massive contaminated-water scandal that was the direct result of shoddy governance.As its majority African-American electorate cast ballots for the next US president Tuesday, many held out hope of a lifeline from the new leader in Washington.The economically downtrodden city an hour's drive north of Detroit -- which hosted both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton during the 2016 race -- is a study in… chat_bubble_outline Read More...
'Nocturnal Animals' interweaves Western, melodrama genre for stylistic brilliance
Read on the original site chat_bubble_outline Read More...