Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:
- The ANC is on the campaign trail ahead of its manifesto launch on 12 January, with president Cyril Ramaphosa promising a ‘renewed’ party that will deal with those implicated in state capture decisively. Meanwhile, Ramaphosa is also campaigning with Jacob Zuma, the man at the centre of state capture, as a key player. [EWN]
- South Africa’s education standards are a mess, education economist Nic Spaull has pointed out, with only 2 in every 10 grade 4 pupils being able to read for meaning, and less than half of all grade 5 students being able to do basic maths. 
- After failing to salvage the Guptas’ scuttled media empire, Mzwanele Manyi is pinning his hopes on a new political movement, abandoning the ANC for the African Transformation Movement (ATM) as one of the party’s national executive members. Manyi said that the ANC was old, fatigued and captured. [City Press]
- Woolworths has apologised for producing and selling a baby carryier that is “strikingly similar” to one already being sold by an entrepreneur in South Africa. The group has pulled the item from its stores, and has committed to doing a better job with its sourcing. [Business Day]
- South Africa’s rand and stocks gained on Wednesday, in line with other emerging markets as hopes the United States and China could reach a trade deal boosted risk sentiment. On Thursday the rand was trading at R13.83 to the dollar, R17.67 to the pound and R15.98 to the euro.