Pierre de Vos

Where have all the ‘good’ people gone?

It is not always easy to stand up and fight against injustice, oppression, corruption and plain stupidity — especially if those guilty of perpetrating the injustice, oppression, corruption and stupidity are one’s friends, one’s colleagues, one’s family, one’s comrades. This is why the vast majority of white South Africans who would describe themselves as “good”…

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Real transformation requires protection of sex workers

I wonder what ANC MP George Lekgetho made of weekend reports that a sex worker was challenging the fairness of her dismissal by her employer in the Labour Court. Lekgetho rightly got into serious trouble for his sexist statement last week that prostitution should be legalised for the 2010 World Cup because “that would make…

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Would the disbanding of the Scorpions be unconstitutional?

Could the planned disbanding of the Scorpions successfully be challenged in the Constitutional Court? I was gently taken to task this morning by Paul Hoffman of the Centre for Constitutional Rights because I told the Mail & Guardian that I do not think there is a constitutional impediment to disbanding the Scorpions. It is clear…

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Is Snuki not part of the mass media?

Can it be that Jacob Zuma — unlike many millions of other South Africans — never watches SABC TV news bulletins, or that he never listens to the many radio stations broadcasting in all South Africa’s official languages every day to more than 26-million South Africans? Has he ever heard of and does he sometimes…

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Bad week for Selebi, worse week for Mbeki?

It was undeniably a bad week for police National Commissioner Jackie Selebi, but I would contend that it might have been an even worse week for President Thabo Mbeki. And that says a lot about the dire political straits in which our president finds himself. Of course, Selebi is in big trouble. Ironically it was…

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President Mbeki: Sad, out-of-touch denialist

The (probably apocryphal) story is told that when Field Marshal Tito, president of the former Yugoslavia, was on his death bed, he heard the noise of thousands of voices outside his window and asked what was going on. “The people have come to say goodbye,” his aid is said to have replied. To which Tito…

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Eating humble pie on Jacob Zuma

In June this year I wrote on my blog that Jacob Zuma was “fading fast” and that his presidential bid was “done for”. Now, less than a week before the Polokwane conference, it is perhaps appropriate to eat humble pie and admit that I was spectacularly wrong. Even if Thabo Mbeki manages to win —…

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Live blog of the president’s interview with the SABC

For all those political junkies out there, I tried something new (for me, at least) on Wednesday night and blogged about President Thabo Mbeki’s interview with the SABC. After 10 minutes, the political editor of the SABC has only asked boring, sweetheart questions. The SABC would find it difficult to defend itself against claims that…

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Denialism = dissidence = Mbeki = death

Ronald Suresh Roberts again tries to argue that President Thabo Mbeki is neither an Aids denialist nor an Aids dissident, but merely a poor, misunderstood and maligned man with a deep passion for the lives of the vulnerable and the poor living with HIV. This comes in the wake of Mark Gevisser’s comments that Mbeki…

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So much for freedom of the media and freedom of religion

Like Deon Maas, I am not a fan of satanism (or Christianity, for that matter). I would not mind the post-midnight gatherings, the listening to Cora Marie or Bles Bridges backward to hear messages of support, the incense and the candles, or the fetching young men in black looking morose and comically trying to feign…

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