Today's Big Stories

The fury in Ferguson and America

Fury in Ferguson: in the US where in the city of Ferguson, Missouri there have been what violent protests after a grand jury decided it would not press charges against police officer Darren Wilson. Wilson had been charged with the death by shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown. Businesses in the city have reportedly been looted and several fires appear to still be raging there, despite appeals for calm from the Brown's parents. US President Barak Obama himself appealed for calm on Monday evening. EWN US Correspondent, Nadia Neophytou:

There seems to be great anger permeated from Ferguson but also throughout the country from LA, New York, Seattle and Washington, DC. Many people here in New York have gathered to express their anger in Times Square and Union Square due to the dropping of these charges against Wilson. This reminds many of the case of Trayvon Martin in Florida two years ago - it seems the same thing is happening again and again and is an indication it seems of the militarisation of the police here.

President of the International Union of Psychological Science, Dr Saths Cooper:

Essentially you have a justice system that is local and the state has it's own high court and justice system, while at a federal level, it's a different story. The kinds of outpouring we're seeing now shows that America hasn't come to terms with its past. Even having an African American president hasn't done much for this. If you look at the images on television, you see people objecting and saying they will not be silent, saying an injustice to one, is an injustice to all of them.

ANCYL still leaderless: a media conference was held at ANC Headquarters, Luthuli House this morning to confirm that the ANC Youth League (ANCYL)’s conference that was due to start on Wednesday, will no longer elect new leaders. ANCYL Spokesperson, Dr Bandile Masuku:

It was a difficult decision that we had to take but it essentially meant that the process wasn't ready for us poliically to have an elective conference. Also the PGC didn't take place and we considered all these factors in coming to this decision.

Zuma to launch #16DaysOfActivism: President Jacob Zuma has the officially launched the 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children in South Africa. Wits Institute for Social and Economic Research's Lisa Vetten:

Sometimes it can be about raising awareness and they can have an effect in this respect. Something that is more focused on educating people on a particular piece of legislation for instance would be more effective. We are making progress in some aspects, but not in many. When you initiate change, it often has unintended consequences that you couldn't have forseen. Sometimes you see a hostility directed towards women precisely because of these gains, that some men use as an excuse to justify why they feel somewhat emasculated.

GDP figures focus: confirmation today that our economy has grown by just 1,4% quarter on quarter in the third quarter of this year. Chief Economist at Investec, Annabel Bishop:

I think they're pretty weak figures and it's really insufficient to get our economy going for job creation. Eskom has already required the industrial sector to cut prodctuion by 10% to conserve energy and the concern is that if we see a ramp up in the industrial sector, that could see an effect, but in households, there won't be much difference. Some better ideas need to come through about the way some parastatals are run in terms of skills and cash-flow management and appointing the right people to the right positions.

Dewani to charter back to the UK?: in the Western Cape High Court, the prosecution is now replying to the defence’s argument that honeymoon murder accused Shrien Dewani should be discharged because no evidence has been brought against him. EWN Correspondent, Rahima Essop:

The defense said yesterday said that Tongo is completely unreliable as a witness and if that collapses, so does the state's entire case. The judge has asked numerous questions today including why Shrien Dewani - who had never been to South African before - would go along with the 'loose arrangement' which resulted in his wife being killed. Since yesterday, he (Dewani) has been listening very intently and has been very calm throughout proceedings. It's very difficult to tell how confident he is about all this.

Refugee refused health care dies: reports have noted that an Ethiopian refugee has passed away after hospitals turned him away saying they could not treat a Non-South African who had double kidney failure. Bedesa Fokora was 27 years old. Attorney at Lawyers For Human Rights, Patricia Erasmus:

We believe my client should have been treated because the National Health Care Act orders that the Minister could have and should have exercised his discretion to treat my client and it is very disappointing that he didn't. This also applies to refugees, especially since South Africa has signed the United Nations convention supporting this. He was diagnosed with double kidney failure and if he was South African, he would have been put on dialysis, pending a kidney transplant. The refusal to put him on dialysis caused his death.

The dangers of cricket: in Australia, cricketer Phil Hughes is still in a medically induced coma after he was struck on the head by a fast bowl - a bouncer - during a provincial cricket match. Former Proteas fast bowler, Fanie de Villiers:

When it happened, a mate of mine phoned me from the stadium in Australia and he'd thought the guy had died. He had a helmet on and it hit him from the back of the head, underneath the helmet. In the old days, they didn't play the hook shot and the bowlers are getting stronger, their endurance levels are so high that they bowl as quick as they would even after 13, 14 or 15 overs and aren't tired. It's become very dangerous.


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