Democratic Alliance

Liberation movements tend to lose power after 30 years. Will SA join the club in 2024?

As South Africa enters 30 years under the rule of the liberation party, Tony Leon examines what success might look like in toppling a government as a liberation movement and finds SA wanting. Imagine you headed operations for a liberation army, seeking to overthrow an oppressive state and the cruel overlords who helmed it. What would you [...]

SA once had a clear vision, now we’re just a muddle

You need to go quite far back to find a time when SA had a universally admired president, his deputy — to whom no personal or financial scandal attached — was thoroughly engaged in keeping the machinery of government humming, and the country had a clear and serious view of its place and purpose in [...]

In SA, hard and soft power battle against each other

In the degraded discourse around local politics a niche backhander on social media — aimed at dissenting or decamping DA figures that are usually black — is “watch out, you’ll soon be sent to Harvard”. This meme suggests, absurdly, that the official opposition has the magical ability to use Harvard, the world’s pre-eminent and richest [...]

The eerie silence after the weekend’s twin events in Cape Town has been deafening

Due to economic headwinds gusting in the face of the publishers of this newspaper, and the media sector overall, today’s column is the last in a series I’ve written for TimesLIVE Premium and its print predecessor stretching back more than a decade. My columns for Business Day continue through December. I will miss my engagement [...]

Alignments pose risks: SA foreign policy may incur costs

South African governments have in the past supported the Palestinian people and their struggle for their own homeland, but have managed to balance that with cordial relations with Israel. There has however been a noticeable shift from this policy during the Presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa.  President Ramaphosa remained silent on the Hamas attacks and only [...]

Festooned with crater-like potholes, Winnie Mandela Drive is a another sad ANC epitaph

Barney Mthombothi, writing in the Sunday Times, decried the decision of the Johannesburg City Council to rename William Nicol Drive in honour of Winnie Mandela. Having tangled with the lady in many jousts inside and outside parliament, I share his view of Mandela’s Janus face: a liberator of note coupled with her role as a [...]

Business leaders will have to fill the governance vacuum

Overlooking Kirstenbosch National Botanic Garden in Cape Town beside a cedar tree is the grave of its visionary founder, Harold Pearson. His epitaph, with a bow to Sir Christopher Wren, reads, “If ye seek his monument look around you.’’ Pearson, who died at just 46 in 1916, did not live to see how, more than [...]

Yikes! The moonshot pact is run from a pizza shop basement

As a Brics scene-stealer, it was hard to beat the offstage and out-of-the-sky antics of Pretoria’s absent friend, Vladimir Putin. Apparently on Wednesday a plane crash in Russia killed Wagner mercenary boss Yevgeny Prigozhin, once known as “Putin’s chef”. His death exactly two months after his short-lived mutiny against the Kremlin proves anew the adage [...]

While US stays on top, the bucking horse of the rule of law throws SA off

Famed 19th-century British constitutional scholar AV Dicey is credited with popularising the concept “the rule of law”. Among its core tenets is that no person is above the law or beyond its reach. Subsequent scholarly warnings that the rule of law is an “unruly horse” have received some recent, alarming updates here and beyond these [...]

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