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Daily Podcast – October 18, 2017

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Daily Podcast – October 18, 2017

Daily Podcast – October 18, 2017

18th October 2017

By: Thabi Madiba
Creamer Media Research Assistant and Reporter

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Making headlines: Zuma reshuffles cabinet 'in bid to secure energy deal'; Call for Zuma to urgently release Fees Commission report; And, Concerns about Zuma connections of SABC board chair, deputy

For Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I’m Thabi Madiba.

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Zuma reshuffles cabinet 'in bid to secure energy deal

President Jacob Zuma has reshuffled his cabinet, adjusting six portfolios including the Ministry of Energy, in a move analysts say is linked to a contentious nuclear energy deal with Russia.

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In a statement issued yesterday, the presidency said it had moved David Mahlobo, former minister of state security and a longtime Zuma ally, to the energy portfolio.

Zuma also fired Blade Nzimande, the minister of higher education and training, in a move understood as punitive after Nzimande criticised the president.

Nzimande is also the General Secretary of South African Communist Party, a key partner in the tripartite alliance with the ANC-led government. His removal from government has prompted speculation that the SACP may leave the alliance.

Political analyst Steve Friedman, director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy at the University of Johannesburg, told Al Jazeera that Mahlobo's appointment was the most important development.

Call for Zuma to urgently release Fees Commission report

The Higher Education Transformation Network yesterday urged President Jacob Zuma to urgently release the final report of the Fees Commission.

The network's chairperson, Reginald Legoabe, briefed the media shortly after the Cabinet reshuffle announcement that Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande had been axed and replaced with former Home Affairs Minister Hlengiwe Mkhize.

President Jacob Zuma yesterday reshuffled his Cabinet for the second time, in seven months.

On the 2018 fee increment, Legoabe said: "they believe that it is critical that the Fees Commission report be disseminated and discussed with all role players in higher education."

He said releasing the report would assist in clarifying the policy stance of the government with regards to planned fee increments for 2018.

And, Concerns about Zuma connections of SABC board chair, deputy

On the same day the South African Broadcasting Corporation's board was finally appointed by President Jacob Zuma amid opposition concerns about the political affiliation of his choices for chairperson and deputy chairperson, the High Court also made a ruling that will safeguard the SABC from political interference in the appointment of the broadcaster's top executives.

There were, however, concerns from the DA and the Broadcasting, Electronic, Media and Allied Workers Union about the politically connected chairperson and deputy chairperson of the board that Zuma appointed.

Yesterday morning the Presidency announced that Zuma designated Bongumusa Makhathini as chairperson and Febe Potgieter-Gqubule as deputy chairperson of the board.

Makhathini is the chairperson of the Bongi Ngema-Zuma Foundation. Ngema-Zuma is one of Zuma's wives.

Potgieter-Gqubule is a long-standing member of the ANC and former chief of staff of ANC presidential hopeful Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma when she headed the African Union Commission. Her name also appears on some slates for the ANC's top six to be elected at the party's conference in December.


Also making headlines:
Mantashe disses 'royal' Sisulu as irrational

That’s a roundup of news making headlines today
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