Jacob Zuma correctional services

Photo by Emmanuel Croset / AFP

South Africa: Today’s latest news and headlines, Thursday 8 July 2021

In the latest news in South Africa on Thursday 8 July 2021, Jacob Zuma has finally handed himself over to authorities to begin his 15-month prison sentence.

Jacob Zuma correctional services

Photo by Emmanuel Croset / AFP

Stay up to date with the latest news in South Africa by taking a look at the major headlines on Thursday 8 July.

Former President Jacob Zuma has resolved to hand himself over to authorities on Wednesday 9 July, having left Nkandla in a motorcade late on Wednesday night, minutes before he was about to be arrested by police


Jacob Zuma hands himself over to PRISON authorities

The Jacob Zuma Foundation has confirmed that corruption-accused former President of South Africa, has left his home in Nkandla to hand himself over to members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) on Wednesday 7 July. Zuma was found guilty of contempt by the Constitutional Court last week and failed to hand himself over to authorities within the mandated five day period, leaving Police Minister Bheki Cele with the right to enforce the arrest order.

It is not yet clear which facility he is going to hand himself over to.

Zuma and his legal council tried in vain to launch a hail Mary plea to the Constitutional Court earlier on Wednesday, asking South Africa’s apex court to suspend the order to arrest the former President pending the outcome of two separate challenges levelled on Tuesday at the Pietermaritzburg High Court.

In a tweet sent out shortly before the arrest deadline at midnight on Wednesday 7 July, the JG Zuma Foundation said that Zuma has ultimately decided to comply with the order and turn himself over to authorities.

“Please be advised that President Zuma has decided to comply with the incarceration order. He is on his way to hand himself into a Correctional Services Facility in KZN. A full statement will be issued in due course,” they said.

Fingers crossed: Gauteng COVID-19 cases ‘now close to peaking’

Premier David Makhura has stated that Gauteng is nearing the peak of its COVID-19 infections during the third wave. The population has been decimated by a wave of new cases, filling up hospitals and driving up mortality rates in the process. However, official figures show that the tide *might* be turning.

Level 4 lockdown restrictions, issued 10 days ago, seem to be taking a toll on the spread of the virus. For the past couple of days, the number of new cases has been declining slowly, but noticeably. While addressing the media on Wednesday, Makhura said that Gauteng is now ‘very close’ to its peak – meaning that cases are likely to tumble soon.

“Our team of scientists yesterday presented a report. We think we are very close, we can’t say when we will peak. In fact, even if we reach the peak this week we are going to continue to ramp up the vaccination.”

“I must thank the people of our province, we have seen more compliance, people are only going out when its necessary we have seen a significant improvement in terms of compliance and our law enforcement are also on the ground.”

Carl Niehaus SUSPENDED by ANC for ‘inflammatory speech’

ANC rogue Carl Niehaus has finally pushed his comrades too far. Heavily involved in the now-disbanded MKMVA wing of the party, the Zuma ally spent the best part of the last week kicking a hornet’s nest outside of Nkandla – leading illegal gatherings outside of the former president’s home. His behaviour, however, has now got him suspended from the party.

In a letter issued to Niehaus, the ANC NEC made it clear that he was guilty of ‘bringing the party into disrepute’ thanks to his alleged inflammatory speech, addressed to thousands of supporters. On Tuesday, Jessie Duarte compared his language to ‘words used by terrorists’, after the 61-year-old called for loyalists to form a human shield around Msholozi.

“The NEC has noted with concern your inflammatory speeches made outside of Nkandla this week. They were broadcast on live TV, and have brought the ANC into disrepute. We have resolved that this conduct was a contravention of the party’s Constitution, and warrants disciplinary action. The NEC has also decided to temporarily suspend you from the ANC.”

“It is reasonable to believe that you will continue with your acts of misconduct and cause further damage to the name and reputation of the ANC. The suspension comes into effect immediately, and justified the removal of a 48-hour period for you to respond to the allegations. You can, however, appeal against this decision.”

NCCC to ‘extend Level 4 lockdown further’ this weekend

South Africa’s National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) is set to meet before Sunday 11 July, as they come to a final decision on extending the country’s Level 4 lockdown regulations. The news, however, isn’t likely to be positive.

COVID-19 cases still remain at a very high level in South Africa, and Gauteng in particular. New infections remain at their peak, meaning that hospitals are still facing a battle to treat every patient admitted to the emergency wards. When Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation 10 days ago, he was hoping that the situation would’ve eased off by now.

It hasn’t, and that means an extension of Level 4 restrictions is now inevitable. The harder form of lockdown was put in place for two weeks, but much like our State of Disaster Regulations, they are likely to be rolled over once again this month. The third wave has, by some margin, been the most ferocious of the virus surges experienced in SA.

Watch: Secunda man assaulted by a group of bikers

A man was severely assaulted by a group of bikers in Secunda after he confronted a woman who had allegedly reversed her car into his car.

In a video that has since been shared on social media, a group of bikers can be seen hitting and kicking the defenseless man lying on the ground.

Brigadier Leonard Hlathi, police spokesperson said five people have been arrested for the assault including the woman.

“The five suspects, Dean Venter (29), Frank van Meyeren (36), Jonathan Vermuelen (41), Sonia van Meyeren (47) and Johannes Vermeulen (50) have been arrested after they were captured on video, which is making rounds online, allegedly assaulting a man.”

Hlathi said the man opened a case of assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm (GBH).

“According to information received, a 27-year-old man who is a victim in this matter, allegedly confronted one of the suspects, Sonia van Meyeren, after she reversed her vehicle and allegedly bumped his car.

Latest farm attack foiled: SAPS arrest five suspects impersonating officers

Police in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) have successfully foiled an attempted farm robbery, with five suspects arrested having plotted to invade a Heilbron property by impersonating police officers. 

The suspects were caught planning the robbery and possible other crimes on Tuesday 6 July by police who were alerted to the imminent attack through a tip-off. They are expected to appear in court later this week on a host of charges. 

South African Police Service (SAPS) spokesperson Colonel Thandi Mbambo said in a statement that two of the suspects are from Gauteng, whilst the other three are from KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). 

“Five suspects (four males and a female) aged between 30 and 41 years respectively, will appear in Heilbron Magistrate court on Friday 9 July 2021, on a charge of possession of unlicensed firearms and ammunitions including conspiracy to commit crime and impersonating a Police Officer,” she said. 

Mbambo said that the arrests were made on Tuesday evening by virtue of a coordinated operation in response to the information about the plotted farm attack received earlier that day.

Watch: Belgium volunteer ATTACKED by a cheetah at SA wildlife facility

A young volunteer from Belgium was recently attacked and injured by a captive cheetah at a South African wildlife facility.

The volunteer Amandine Lequime, who was assisting at a captive wildlife facility in South Africa, was left traumatised after the attack by a captive cheetah last month.

Lequime was filming outside of the cheetah’s enclosure, while her colleague was on feeding duty.

She said as soon as her colleague opened the enclosure gate, one of the cheetahs approached Lequime swiftly, jumped on her back aiming for her throat.

“I lost my balance and fell to the ground, where the cheetah continued to bite and claw my arms and legs until the facility manager succeeded in getting the cheetah away from me.

“I ended up in hospital for treatment of several deep bite marks and cuts that caused muscle damage and required stitches.”


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