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NEWSFLASH NEWS AGENCY 10 February 7 am

Good morning,

In this bulletin:

# A political analyst says South Africans want real leadership from president Cyril Ramaphosa
# Police minister Bheki Cele will address law enforcement agencies ahead of the state of the nation address
# And, the DA calls for school days to be extended by an hour

# Political analyst Daniel Silke says South Africans have had enough of promises and they are looking for real leadership and greater accountability from president Cyril Ramaphosa. The president is set to deliver the state of the nation address at the Cape Town City Hall this evening. Silke says there are a number of challenges in the country all simultaneously affecting the creditability of Ramaphosa:

Play sound: ENG SilkeOnRamaphosa

Meanwhile, Police minister Bheki Cele will this afternoon address law enforcement agencies ahead of the state of the nation address. He plans to speak to all officials who will be deployed to ensure safety and security during the event. According to the ministry’s spokesperson, Lirandzu Themba, deployed officials will include members of the South African National Defence Force:

Play sound: ENG-LirandhzuThemba

# South Africa has recorded three-thousand-628 new Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours. The majority of new cases are from Gauteng with 34-percent, followed by the Western Cape with 15-percent and KwaZulu-Natal accounting for 14-percent. There has been an increase of 128 hospital admissions in the past 24 hours. A further 22 Covid-19 related deaths have been recorded taking the total fatalities to 96-thousand-502 to date. The country’s recovery rate is steady at around 96-percent.

# The DA has requested for school days to be extended by an hour as part of the recovery plan to allow learners to catch up on the curriculum. DA spokesperson Baxolile Nodada says it is important for the Department of Basic Education to also consider bringing in retired teachers for extra lessons after school and on weekends. Nodada says there must be a tracking, tracing and retaking strategy, especially for all learners that have dropped out during Covid-19. The DA will table its curriculum recovery plan to the department.

# Rugby: Stormers coach John Dobson says his team is still very much a work in progress. The Western Cape side has started well in the United Rugby Championship this year defeating the Bulls and drawing and beating the Sharks. Dobson says they are probably not as good as some of the praise they have received over the last few weeks. However, he has encouraged his players to keep growing and don’t let the praise get to their heads. The Stormers take on the Lions at Ellis Park on Saturday.

# Financial indicators: The dollar is trading at 15-rand-23-cents and the euro at 17-rand-41-cents. One British pound costs 20-rand-62-cents and Bitcoin trades at 44-thousand-337-dollar-2-cents. Gold is selling at one thousand-833-dollars-70-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 91-dollars-30-cents a barrel.

# And finally, today marks World Pulses Day under the theme, Pulses to empower youth in achieving sustainable agrifood systems. Pulses, also known as legumes, are the edible seeds of leguminous plants cultivated for food. Dried beans, lentils, and peas are the most commonly known and consumed types of pulses. The United Nations says pulses are crucial in terms of food security, nutritional value, and environmental benefits.

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