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SA learners in International Moot Court Competition
19 January 2018, 3:12 PM

Four Eastern Cape pupils are among the eight that will represent South Africa in the International Moot Court Competition that starts on Saturday in the Hague, Netherlands.

The debate competition to select South Africa’s top debaters was held across the country.

The learners from the Eastern Cape who were selected are from the Holy Cross High School in Mthatha and Beaconhurst in East London.

“On the 21st it will be the orientation of the 45 countries. So South Africa is amongst those 45 countries. On the 22nd, we are starting the first argument that is the first round. If our country has succeeded they will go to the second round,” explains provincial Education Department  coordinator, Funeka Jwaai.


Shooters up in arms over Birmingham 2022 exclusion
19 January 2018, 3:02 PM

Shooters are up in arms over a decision not to include their Olympic sport in the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games programme.

Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) Chief Executive David Grevemberg confirmed on Friday that shooting, classified as an optional sport, would not feature.

The British city was chosen last December, replacing Durban in South Africa which was stripped of the event because it failed to meet promises made.

“We know they (Birmingham organisers) considered all optional sports carefully, but a final decision was reached,” Grevemberg wrote in an open letter to the editor of Britain’s Shooting Times.

“The CGF has awarded the Games supporting these plans and consequently shooting will not feature at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.”

Grevemberg, an American former wrestler who was chief executive of the 2014 Glasgow Games, recognised that would be disappointing for those who practised and followed the sport.

He said the CGF president would meet shooting’s world governing body, the ISSF, to discuss future plans.

It will be the first time since Edinburgh 1970 that shooting, which became an optional sport for host cities after 2014, has not featured at a Commonwealth Games.

England will have a squad of 20 shooters at the 2018 Games on Australia’s Gold Coast, including double gold medallist Steve Scott. The country has won 168 shooting medals at past Games.

Scott, who won bronze at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics, told the Shooting Times website ( that Birmingham’s decision was a “big blow”.

“Obviously we’ve still got the Olympic Games and all the other world events we try to achieve in,” he added.

“But everyone who has tried to get to the Commonwealth Games this year and didn’t, and has more than the ability to win a medal in 2022, are not going to have that opportunity to do so.”

More than 27,000 people had signed a Shooting Times petition asking Grevemberg to ensure the sport was included.

The National Shooting Centre at Bisley in southern England hosted events for Manchester 2002 but Birmingham has said it wants a compact Games using existing venues chosen on accessibility.

Despite that, the track cycling events are set to be held in London.

The Birmingham decision has also gone down badly in India, whose first individual Olympic gold medal was won in shooting by Abhinav Bindra at Beijing in 2008.

Shooting has provided more than a quarter of India’s total Commonwealth Games medals.

Zimbabwean President wants UN to observe vote
19 January 2018, 2:52 PM

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa wants international observers including United Nations (UN) officials to watch over the country’s upcoming elections, he said in a Financial Times interview.

Mnangagwa has adopted a more diplomatic tone since taking over as leader in November, after the ousting of former Robert Mugabe.

After announcing earlier this week that elections will be held in four to five months, the new president invited international observers to Zimbabwe for the vote.

“We want fair, free, credible elections,” he told British business newspaper the Financial Times in an interview published on Thursday.

“I would want that the United Nations should come; the EU should come … If the Commonwealth were requesting to come, I am disposed to consider their application,” he added.

Zimbabwe shunned international observers during Mugabe’s 37-year rule, during which elections were marred by vote-rigging and violent suppression of the opposition.

Mnangagwa was one of Mugabe’s closest allies in the ruling ZANU-PF party and the 75-year-old has been accused of playing a vital role in the authoritarian regime.

But since taking over the presidency he has extended an olive branch to the international community, including to former colonial ruler Britain.

The UK was an outspoken critic of Mugabe’s leadership, but Mnangagwa predicted closer ties when Britain leaves the European Union in 2019.

“They will need us. And we will make sure we become very close to them,” he told the FT.

The Zimbabwean president also said he would be open to seeking to re-join the Commonwealth, a grouping of nations largely formerly ruled by Britain.

Madikizela-Mandela ordered to pay Mandela estate legal costs
19 January 2018, 12:21 PM

The Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein has dismissed an appeal by struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

Madikizela-Mandela challenged the ownership of the Mandela home in Qunu, Eastern Cape, arguing she was the rightful owner.

She claimed that she only found out in 2014 that the property was registered in former President Nelson Mandela‘s name and that it was part of his will.

The property was bequeathed to the Nelson Rholihlahla Mandela Family Trust by Madiba for the benefit of the Mandela family.

Madikizela-Mandela has been ordered to pay the costs of the two legal counsels of executors of the Mandela estate.



Australian Open heat makes headlines
19 January 2018, 12:11 PM

The heat is making headlines at the Australian Open, where temperatures have once again topped 40 degrees.

Fourth seed Elina Svitolina has been joined in the fourth round by three unseeded players – Elise Mehrtens, Denisa Allertova and Petra Martic.

In the men’s draw, 3rd seed Grigor Dimitrov recovered from a 2nd set hiccup to beat youngster Andrey Rublev in straight sets.

Also through are Pablo Carreno-Busta and Kevin Anderson’s conqueror, Kyle Edmund.

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