BULLETIN 12 February 9 am
Good morning. I am……..
In this bulletin:
# Load-shedding is predicted to persist for the next five years
# Two Israeli hostages are rescued during a raid in Rafah
# And soccer, the Ivory Coast beat Nigeria to be crowned Afcon champions
# South Africa is going to continue experiencing load-shedding for the next five years. This is according to University of Johannesburg professor, Hartmut Winkler. Electricity minister Kgosientsho Ramokgopa has emphasised that in the effort to resolve load-shedding, they are not going to cut corners. Speaking to Newzroom Afrika, Winkler says Eskom’s energy availability factor has been getting worse resulting in higher stages of load-shedding. He added that he gets the sense that the country has passed the worst of load-shedding:
# Employers in the steel industry are urging workers to be realistic in their expectations going into the 2024 wage negotiations, given the industry’s dire financial situation. In 2022 and 2023, workers received increases equivalent to five-percent. The president of the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa, Elias Monage, says two options could be considered when wage negotiations ensue. These are reopening wage negotiations from scratch to include new wage increases and other remuneration benefits, or working from the existing agreement as a base and improving parts of it.
# Residents of eThekwini in KwaZulu-Natal have raised concerns about the General Intelligence Laws Amendment Bill during public hearings, saying it gives the minister in the Presidency too much power. The bill amongst other things seeks to establish the South African Intelligence Agency, which will have a domestic focus, and be responsible for counter-intelligence and intelligence-gathering functions. Chairperson of Parliament’s ad hoc committee on the bill, Jerome Maake, says some residents also said that the definitions in the bill are vague:
# Two Israeli hostages have been rescued during a special raid in the southern Gaza city of Rafah, 128 days after they were taken captive. The two rescued hostages have been identified as 60-year-old Fernando Simon Marman, and 70-year-old Louis Har, who were taken by Hamas during the militant group’s deadly October seventh attack on Israel. Meanwhile, the Palestine Red Crescent Society says more than 30 people have been killed in Israeli airstrikes, with two mosques and several houses bombed in the early hours of this morning.
# Soccer: Hosts Ivory Coast came from behind to beat Nigeria two-one and win the Africa Cup of Nations for the third time. William Troost-Ekong had put Nigeria ahead seven minutes before the end of the first half. Franck Kessie scored the equaliser in the 62nd minute. Former West Ham strike, Sebastien Haller, who battled back from being diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2022, scored the winner in the 81st minute. Ivory Coast becomes the first tournament host to triumph since Egypt lifted the trophy in 2006.
# And the financial indicators: The dollar trades at 19-rand-4-cents and the euro at 20-rand-55-cents. One British pound costs 24-rand-5-cents and Bitcoin trades at 48-thousand-164-dollars-4-cents. Gold sells at two-thousand-23-dollars-74-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 81-dollars-89-cents a barrel.
Stay tuned for more news………….