Posted inNews/Politics

Mantashe, Mulder and other Africans

‘Race’* is an overused concept in South African discourses that frequently hides more than it reveals. Therefore, it remains imperative to scrutinise the particular historical context in which ‘race’ is wielded. When we discern how ‘race’ is applied to maintain or expand power, we can resist attempted reactivations of the apartheid template and disrupt ‘whiteness’ […]

Posted inNews/Politics

Suspicion-mongering to discredit critical civil society

Cynicism permeated the atmosphere at Parliament’s latest round of public hearings on the Protection of State Information Bill (POSIB), ringing alarm bells about increasing hostility emanating from parliamentarians towards civil society. While the interaction should be rigorous, as different views are tested, the mere hosting of public hearings should not in itself be contentious in […]

Posted inNews/Politics

Enemies, enemies, everywhere

“No rubbernecking,” I was told by an official when I crossed into Zimbabwe from Botswana in the late 1990s. I immediately understood that as a journalist I am allowed entry as long as I don’t “snoop around”. Zanu-PF’s resistance to being held accountable, also by “outsiders”, had already by that early stage infiltrated the lower […]

Posted inMediaNews/Politics

Zapiro, Zuma and us – Part 2. Using rape against rape

Recently Dr Mamphela Ramphele astutely observed that the problem with African leaders is their inability “to envision their roles as agents of fundamental transformation of their societies”. I want to extend her point to those in the business of manufacturing public opinion, in particular journalists and cartoonists. Ramphele uses the example of Zimbabwean President Robert […]