South Africa: Today’s latest news and headlines, Wednesday 18 November

It’s the middle of the week and time to take a look at what the latest news and headlines are today on Wednesday 18 November. A lot happened yesterday and with half the week to go anything could still happen.

The Bushiris are still out of reach of South African authorities, a lucky Verulam man miraculously escaped injury or worse when a tyre loaded on a bakkie exploded, sending him flying into the air, and trouble is still brewing in Brackenfell, Cape Town.


Watch: Man escapes unhurt in explosion at petrol station

Verulam resident was overwhelmingly lucky to escape uninjured – and, somehow, still alive – after he was caught up in a ‘huge explosion’ captured on CCTV at a local petrol station.

The incident took place just after 15:00 on Monday 16 November. A bakkie pulls up at the pumps, and the driver begins filling a tractor tyre in the back of the vehicle with air. However, things go very wrong, very quickly. The tyre explodes with ferocious force, flipping the passenger out of the vehicle. Patrol unit RUSA was at the scene when the accident happened:

“A Ford Ranger bakkie was extensively damaged after a tractor tyre exploded while being filled with air at a service station in Verulam, KZN. A member of Reaction Unit South Africa (RUSA) was on patrol in the area when he heard the explosion.

Revealed: Barack Obama slams Jacob Zuma in his new book

Former President of the United States, Barack Obama, is already dropping bombshells on the first day his new book is released. A Promised Land will officially launch on Tuesday 17 November, carrying various anecdotes about his eight years in office – and the current state of American democracy. He’s even found time to mention Jacob Zuma, too.

Both Jacob Zuma and Barack Obama have met during state visits, and also came together for the funeral of Nelson Mandela – held in 2013. Clearly, uBaba left an impression on Obama…

But the 59-year-old doesn’t seem to remember Msholozi in glowing terms. Despite branding him as an ‘eloquent speaker’, the ex-leader lambasts his South African counterpart for being part of the leadership that has ‘squandered the goodwill built up by Nelson Mandela’, blaming the ANC for allowing ‘corruption and incompetence’ to run riot in government:

“In subsequent meetings, Jacob Zuma struck me as being amiable enough. He spoke eloquently of the need for fair trade, human development, infrastructure, and a need for more equitable distribution of wealth on the African continent.”

“By all accounts though, much of the goodwill built up by Nelson Mandela’s heroic struggle was being squandered by corruption and incompetence under the ANC leadership, leaving vast swathes of the country’s black population still mired in poverty and despair.”Barack Obama forthright views on Jacob Zuma, as featured in ‘A Promised Land

Hoërskool Elspark: Vicious fight sparked by ‘lost cellphone’

A video depicting chaotic scenes of violence between learners at Hoërskool Elspark has been making the rounds on social media. The Gauteng Education Department initially said one learner was stabbed in the process, however, after MEC Panyaza Lesufi visited the school on Tuesday, the number rose to two.

Following Lesufi’s visit to Hoërskool Elspark, he revealed that the incident emanated from a lost cellphone belonging to a learner. 

“It is alleged that the violence started in the school premises on Monday, 16 November 2020, and Subsequently, two learners allegedly suffered stab wounds, however, it is not clear who might have stabbed both learners,” said Lesufi. 

Lesufi said the incident allegedly started last Friday and spilled over to Monday.

Bushiri: Dirco committed to maintaining cordial Malawi relations

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) gave an update on “Prophet” Bushiri’s escape, saying that South Africa and Malawi “are committed to maintaining […] rule of law”.

As reported by Times Live, Dirco spokesperson Clayton Monyela on Tuesday, 17 November said “some concerns and misunderstanding within the Malawian delegation” have been addressed.

Clayton Monyela explained that as SADC member states, both South Africa and Malawi must maintain the region “as a zone committed to the rule of law, peace and development.” He added:


“All the SADC protocols signed and ratified by member states are critical in this context”.

He explained that the delayed departure of Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera’s aircraft from South African soil was unavoidable and reiterated that no “SA officials compromised diplomatic courtesies”.

Brackenfell: EFF vow to ‘teach racists humility’

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) have vowed to do everything in their power to totally halt operations at Brackenfell High School on Friday 20 November as they continue their protest against the racism-accused school. 

Following complaints received by the Red Berets in the Western Cape from parents of black students at the school, calls have been raised for the principal to resign, and protests turned ugly when parents of students clashed with members last week, leading to one arrest and the emergence of South Africa’s latest hotspot for racial tension. 

The EFF said on their official twitter account on Tuesday 17 November that the previous incidents of violence that unfolded outside the gates of the school in question were “terror attacks” that cannot go unanswered.

“We did say that the terror attacks in Brackenfell will not go unanswered. On Friday we will descend and ensure that nothing operates,” they wrote. 

Bafana Bafana’s AFCON group thrown wide open

Bafana Bafana’s 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Group C has been thrown wide open following Sudan’s shock victory over Ghana on Tuesday.

Although they were playing away from home, 48th-ranked Ghana had been expected to beat 128th-placed Sudan and further entrench their lead atop the standings.

Instead, Sudan have now made it a three-way fight for the two available group spots at AFCON 2022 in Cameroon.

After four of the six qualification matches, Ghana lead the group on nine points.

The Black Stars are level on points with Bafana Bafana, but ahead on goal difference (+4 versus +3). Sudan find themselves on six points.

Only the top two teams in each group will qualify for Africa’s showpiece tournament in Cameroon.


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