Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:
- President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that R1.1 billion of South Africa’s spending budget will be redirected specifically to combat gender-based violence. The funds will be used to tackle the issue on 5 fronts – from preventative measures, adjusting the legal framework, strengthening the justice system, ensuring there are support networks for victims, and economically empowering women. [City Press]
- SAA says a government cash injection of R5.5 billion rand approved for the 2019/20 financial year is expected at the end of the month – but it still needs more money. It has debt of has debt of about R12.7 billion, and needs R2 billion by December to fund working capital. Its recovery plan needs government to bail it out to the tune of R22 billion. [Reuters]
- Religious rights group, Freedom of Religion, says the Constitutional Court ruling on physically disciplining your child could potentially destroy families. The court found that ‘reasonable and moderate chastisement’ such as spanking was not in line with the Constitution. This, the group said, means that well-intentioned parents who spank their children could have their kids taken away from them. [EWN]
- Gauteng helath department employees have reportedly been working for only two weeks a month – while earning full pay. Department workers said it was because the rented office space it was using could not hold all the staff at the same time. The department was forced to rent after its previous building was gutted by a fire in September 2018. [Times Select]
- South Africa’s rand steadied on Wednesday as fears of an oil price spike eased and investors waited for a US Federal Reserve interest-rate decision. The rand was firmer after two consecutive sessions of losses as a spike in global oil prices and fears tensions in the Middle East would further dampen local business conditions pushed the currency to a 2-week low. On Thursday the rand was at R14.72 to the dollar, R18.37 to the pound and R16.25 to the euro.