BULLETIN 7 February 1 pm
Good afternoon. I am……..
In this bulletin:
# A survey reveals the possibility of a national-level coalition after the elections
# South Africa’s mining fatalities climbed 22-percent in 2023
# And Rugby: Injury worries for Scotland before the Six Nations clash with France
# A recent Ipsos survey indicates a shifting political landscape ahead of the national and provincial elections. The poll reveals significant insights into party support, with the ANC garnering below 50-percent support. The DA is poised to potentially reclaim the position of the official opposition at 20-percent, while the Economic Freedom Fighters continue to present a formidable challenge at 18-percent. These findings come as president Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to announce the election date during tomorrow’s opening of Parliament. The possibility of national-level coalitions adds complexity to the final electoral outcomes.
# South Africa’s mining industry recorded 55 fatalities last year, a 22-percent increase from 2022’s 45 deaths, despite it being a record low. The Minerals Council South Africa highlighted safety improvements, but cited a major incident at Impala Platinum in November as a setback. Fifteen deaths occurred in general accidents, 14 in rockfalls, and 13 in conveyance incidents. The council’s Dushendra Naidoo calls for stricter enforcement of safety measures in the industry.
Meanwhile, the Benchmark Foundation has welcomed the mining rights system for companies which should work within a year. Minerals Resources and Energy minister Gwede Mantashe said at the Africa Mining Indaba in Cape Town government is working to clear the country’s backlog of applications to reignite exploration activity. Benchmark Foundation’s chief researcher, David van Wyk, told Newzroom Afrika there is need for caution against possible challenges that may arise:
# Families of South African engineers Frik Potgieter and Peter Huxham are pleading for their release as the two face a year of arbitrary detention in Equatorial Guinea. They were arrested on questionable drug charges amid strained relations between the two countries, and their families stress the urgent need for government’s intervention. The families express disappointment with the South African government’s limited efforts, urging swift action to end the distress and disruption caused by the illegal and arbitrary detention of their loved ones.
# Rugby: Scotland’s preparations for Saturday’s Six Nations clash with France in Edinburgh has suffered a setback with the news two players will miss the rest of the competition. Lock Richie Gray and flanker Luke Crosbie both sustained injuries during the one-point victory over Wales in the opening round. Full-back Blair Kinghorn is expected to miss this weekend’s game as well after a knee injury kept him out of the opening game. Winger Darcy Graham and prop WP Nel are expected to resume training this week.
# And the financial indicators: The dollar trades at 18-rand-85-cents and the euro at 20-rand-29-cents. One British pound costs 23-rand-80-cents and Bitcoin trades at 42-thousand-989-dollars-58-cents. Gold sells at two-thousand-and-34-dollars-14-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 79-dollars-2-cents a barrel.
Stay tuned for more news………….