​Unembargoed: Mail & Guardian February 2 to 8

Slice of Life: Felicia and my hair epiphany

Seeing successful black women rocking different hairdos that I’d never seen before planted the love of hair into my soul.

Zuma digs in heels ahead of Sona

President Jacob Zuma is adamant he will deliver his State of the Nation address on Thursday, despite calls for him to step down.

Ace strikes a blow to ANC unity in KZN

Going off script, the secretary general is mollifying the fortified Zuma faction in the province instead of working to bring the opposing sides together.

Parties unite to trip over JZ over Sona

Whether it’s through the opposition or the ANC itself, the road to Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation address it littered with potholes.

Daycare shacks offer shelter for poor toddlers

A pastor and residents in informal settlements are opening their hearts to destitute children

Bill aims to fix same-sex marriage glitch

The Civil Union Act was a huge step forward for equality in South Africa, allowing same-sex couples to get married. But because of one “constitutionally unacceptable” proviso, couples are being turned away by the department of home affairs.

Madikizela: ‘De Lille’s own caucus has lost faith in her’

Western Cape Democratic Alliance leader Bonginkosi Madikizela says the party’s federal executive made an about-turn on Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille’s future because it could no longer impose her on caucus members who wanted her out.

The Western Cape ANC race is on

Opposing camps of ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and President Jacob Zuma supporters are squaring off in the Western Cape, each intent on installing their preferred candidate.

Run on Newlands spring hints at Cape Town’s future

The queues are growing and tempers are raising at a natural water source at the foot of Table Mountain.

Sassa a mess on all fronts, warn experts

A panel wants the treasury to take over paying social grants as the agency can’t get its act together.

ANN7 sacrificed to save MultiChoice

MultiChoice chief executive Calvo Mawela was clear — there had been “mistakes”.

In the first minutes of describing an investigation into his company’s relationship with the Gupta-created news channel ANN7, Mawela used that word five times.

UCT to embark on its own TRC

But students are wary that they’ll bare the brunt and that the university won’t be held accountable.

What’s in a cup of tea, Ben Martins asks

The deputy minister has admitted to arranging a meeting between the Prasa boss and Tony Gupta.

The other Life Esidimeni scandal

A judgment highlights the Gauteng social development department’s illicit doings.

Vaping could pose a cancer risk, study finds

Vaping may raise the risk of cancer because it leads to DNA damage, even though it contains fewer carcinogens than tobacco smoke, a United States study has found.

Day Zero stalks Eastern Cape’s towns

Two farming towns in the Eastern Cape might have to face their Day Zero before Cape Town. The only dam supplying the area is at a critical level, and the sinking of boreholes is being hampered by a rocky and mountainous terrain.

‘Inxeba wounds our cultural practice’

The boycotters say the film inaccurately reflects initiation. Other call their reaction homophobia.

BHEKISISA

Mounting deaths, missing answers

The #LifeEsidimeni tragedy has revealed the Gauteng government’s inner workers, leading one doctor to say, ‘If this is how things are run … God help us all.’

AFRICA

Kenya inaugurates another crisis

Two men claim the title, so will the real Kenyan president please stand up?

Kenya slides into ‘dictatorship’ with a media shutdown

When the M&G speaks to Kenyan reporter Larry Madowo on Thursday morning, he’s at his office in the Nation Centre in Nairobi. He slept there on Wednesday night, along with his Nation Media Group colleagues Linus Kaikai and Ken Mijungu – although none of them got much sleep.

Beware of superpowers bearing gifts

The African Union’s ‘spy’ computers show that aid always comes with strings attached.

Finding Raptha, East Africa’s lost Roman-era city

Forgotten by history, the ancient city of Raphta is among Africa’s most enduring archaeological mysteries. But a barnacle-encrusted wall, submerged in turbulent waters off Tanzania’s Mafia Island, may be all that remains of it.

AU gives continent-wide air travel a long-awaited boost

Passengers, fasten your seatbelts: African aviation is finally for take off. Amid much fanfare, the Single African Air Transport Market was launched, three decades after the idea was first approved.

SA, Rwanda clash over AU reforms

Tensions between South Africa and Rwanda over African Union reforms threaten to derail plans to make the continental body more effective and self-sufficient.

BUSINESS

Viceroy comes up short on Capitec

JP Vester was right about African Bank and Steinhoff but disagrees with VIceroy’s latests report.

Eskom chief Hadebe is Mr Fix-it

The former civil servant who turned around the Land Bank has a much bigger job ahead.

Set South Africa’s RDP houses free

For many South Africans, a house is the only asset of value they may ever own. Government feels this wealth should be preserved and that these houses could then be left to the children of the initial beneficiaries of the RDP programme. On paper this sounds charitable but the reality is that this assumes a one-size-fits-all plan.

Cape’s water crisis to have ripple effect

Cape Town without water could have a calamitous effect on South Africa’s economy, economists and water experts say.

Digging under way after Steinhoff collapse

After a long silence over the Steinhoff International saga, which cost investors R200-billion after reports of alleged fraud emerged, investigators are now kicking up the dust.

FRIDAY

Our favourite further mucker

The ‘man boy of all ages’ was one of the very best that SOuth Africa — and the world — had ever had.

Hamba kahle Bra Hugh, love Thandiswa

Like the meteorite Thandiswa Mazwai dreamed of before hearing of his passing, he was a celestial creative force but also her beloved ‘industry dad’.

On home, father figures and the last days of the archetypal Bras as we know them

Bra Hugh is the embodiment of a household name precisely because, in and through his work, we share unforgettable encounters as if he had visited people’s homes.

Farewell to my childhood

It’s hard for me to talk about jazz without talking about my father or contrasting the music to growing up ekasi.

An icon shared with all of Africa

I had to come, and came from the African Union summit in Addis Ababa on my way back home to Accra, so I could express my condolences to Barbara and his family in person.

From perfect stranger to brother

I first came to South Africa during the time of apartheid in the 1980s. There was a crackdown on journalists trying to enter the country. I came there on a tourist visa.

Flying home: He was always free

For many of us, Masekela had the consistent forward momentum of a train. As he put it so memorably in Stimela: A-chugging, and a pumping, and a smoking

Blues for Bra Hugh

It is now common coin that the past is never a thing of the past. It is passed down and around like a gourd of beer or any kwaai piece of music.

COMMENT & ANALYSIS

How the ANC can oust Zuma this month

The longer Zuma stays in office and in the public eye, and the closer the country gets to the polls, the more the ANC bleeds.

Guns blazing or sweet surrender?

Unwritten stories have piled up like corruption counts against Daddy, our soon to be former head of state. Deadline day is upon both Daddy and myself

The ANC will need to rise from the ashes

Lessons on organisational transformation indicate that, often, when brands fail to live up to their values and ultimately fall out of favour, they undergo a creative destruction.

African youths need to make their voices heard

Africa, with a youth population that is reportedly greater than that of any other part of the world, has a unique advantage and opportunity to mine and harness the potential and spirit of its young people. But there are significant threats facing them.

Did millions go to waste?

Activists say the government may be investing in the wrong female condom

Farewell to a lifelong activist

The South African Communist Party has lowered its red flag in honour of a gallant stalwart of the struggle for liberation and social emancipation, Rica Hodgson.

Admission patterns plague schools

Understanding migrations and age dynamics can address placement problems.

Teach in first language, it’s key to success

Switching to second-language teaching to early places pupils at a great disadvantage.

Editorial: President in name only

Uhuru Kenyatta insists that he is the legitimate president of Kenya. He is right. The inauguration stunt pulled this week by opposition leader Raila Odinga has no legal foundation.

Editorial: MultiChoice just doesn’t get it

When MultiChoice chief executive Calvo Mawela addressed the media this week, he was contrite. There had been “mistakes”, he said.

Letters to the editor February 2 to 8

Our readers respond to “State, amakhosi and residents at odds over tribal land”,  and write about living in South Africa.

SPORT

A masked maverick

Wenger’s new striker made it impossible for his precious club Borussia Dortmund to keep him.

Ka-ching! It’s raining cash in the EPL

England’s Premier League clubs have spent more money than ever in the January transfer window, with initial estimates suggesting they had reached £450‑million (R7.6‑billion) by deadline day.

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