NEWSFLASH NEWS AGENCY 17 November 6 am
In this bulletin:
# The court orders SARS to give Amabhungane and Financial Mail access to Jacob Zuma’s tax records
# Eskom warns a loss of generation capacity could lead to load-shedding at short notice
# And, the leader of the Phoenix Ubuntu Forum denies the murders during the July unrest were a massacre
# The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria has ordered the South African Revenue Service to provide former president Jacob Zuma’s tax records to Amabhungane and Financial Mail within ten days. The two publications had approached the court challenging Sars’ refusal to disclose Zuma’s tax records for the year between 2010 and 2018 in the public interest. The High Court endorsed the media houses’ argument that the Tax Administration Act failed to strike the right constitutional balance between access to information in the public interest and taxpayers’ right to privacy.
# Eskom has warned the power system is severely constrained after five generating units at several power stations failed yesterday afternoon. The utility warns further loss of capacity could lead to load-shedding at short notice. Spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha has requested the public’s assistance in reducing the usage of electricity:
Play sound: ENG-SikonathiMantshantsha
# The South African Human Rights Commission is currently hearing evidence about the causes and aftermath of the July unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. Taking the stand yesterday was Phoenix Ubuntu Forum leader Sham Maharaj, who claims the media contributed to the misinformation on events that unfolded in the area. During questioning he maintained the killing of 33 people in that week could not be defined as a massacre:
Play sound: ENG-MaharajOnPhoenix
# The head of the Life Esidimeni project, Levy Mosenogi, says one of the biggest lessons after the tragedy was that public servants must stand up to political heads. He testified in the inquest into the tragedy in the High Court in Pretoria. Mosenogi who was the department’s chief director of Planning at the time was the only senior manager who asked former MEC Qedani Mahlangu that the transfer of mental healthcare patients be stalled between six months and a year. Mosenogi was being cross-examined about the death of 144 patients.
# The African Union Commission has condemned the action of three suicide bombers who targeted the Ugandan capital Kampala, killing at least three people and wounding over 30. Three attackers on motorbikes blew themselves up near parliament and the city’s police headquarters. A possible attack on a third target was foiled by police who pursued and disarmed a suspected suicide bomber. Police have described this as a coordinated attack by extremists. AU chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat says these terrorist attacks on the continent must be condemned.
# Cricket: New Zealand barely had time to recuperate after playing in the final of the T20 World Cup before the start of their tour of India. The first of three T20s will be played in Jaipur today, the second in Ranchi on Friday, and the final one in Kolkata on Sunday. This will be followed by a two-match Test series, with the first one getting underway in Kanpur next Thursday. New Zealand lost to Australia in the final this past Sunday.
# And the financial indicators: The dollar is trading at 15-rand-49-cents and the euro at 17-rand-55-cents. One British pound costs 20-rand-81-cents and Bitcoin trades at 59-thousand-527-dollar-7-cents. Gold is selling at one thousand-855-dollars-39-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 81-dollars-71-cents a barrel.
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