5 important things happening in South Africa today

Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:

Coronavirus: In South Africa, 33 new Covid-19 deaths have been reported, totalling 99,932. The country has 13,765 active cases and a recovery rate of 96.9%.

  • Leaking funds: An internal audit by the Department of Water and Sanitation has revealed that despite R3 billion being spent on the ‘War on Leaks’ project across South Africa, it did not address or reduce water losses in the country. Put forward by former president Jacob Zuma, the project failed to train the 15,000 unemployed youth it envisioned to work on it – only 852 people completed training. The project was initiated to curb the almost R7 billion in losses incurred from water leaks nationwide. [News24]

  • Procurement confusion: National Treasury estimates that South Africa’s annual spending on public procurement is approximately R938 billion. A new case heard in the Constitutional Court has dismissed the appeal by the Minister of Finance against the Supreme Court of Appeal judgment that declared regulations regarding procurement and instructions for the adjudication process of procurement invalid. The court’s decision left tenderers and organs of state confused about the current regulatory regime. The minister filed an urgent application to the Constitutional Court to seek clarification. [Moneyweb]

  • Abandoned hospitals: The Gauteng government spent R1.24 billion of Covid-19 funds to construct four new “field intensive care” hospitals – two of which remain unopen and the others partially in use, awaiting being repurposed. The buildings were controversially commissioned in March 2020 to provide extra bed capacity for the first wave of the pandemic. The Daily Maverick has revealed that many senior health and infrastructure officials have been suspended due to the ongoing probe by the Special Investigating Unit. [Daily Maverick]

  • Public Protector impeachment: Public Protector Busiswe Mkhwebane says President Cyril Ramaphosa must withdraw his letter warning her of a possible suspension. Mkhwebane was given ten days to explain to Ramaphosa why he should not suspend her. She wants the president to distance himself from the process of her impeachment, alleging that he is “heavily conflicted” due to her investigation into his conduct. Such investigations include the president’s concession that the ANC misused state funds for internal campaigns. [EWN]

  • Markets: Asian shares were headed for a second successive week of gains on Friday. However, trading fluctuated amid US monetary policy changes and disturbances in the commodities market due to war in Ukraine. Oil continued to slide a little as the United States and allies considered releasing more oil from storage to cool markets. The rand is currently trading at R14.49/$, R15.99/€ and R19.16£. [Nasdaq]

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5 important things happening in South Africa today