Making headlines: ANC to make announcement on Zuma exit at noon; Proposed sugar levy unlikely to make sizeable dent in fiscal deficit; And, Riek Machar’s spokesman sentenced to death
For Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I’m Paige Muller.
ANC to make announcement on Zuma exit at noon
The ANC said in a terse statement that it will today at noon pronounce on President Jacob Zuma's fate.
All indications are that the ruling party's top brass has decided to force Zuma out after a marathon 13-hour closed meeting.
Media reports say the national executive committee resolved to recall Zuma after he refused to resign.
The scandal-ridden president had reportedly offered to resign, but only in July - something the ANC flatly refused to entertain.
Zuma has since told the ANC to "do what it wants to do".
Proposed sugar levy unlikely to make sizeable dent in fiscal deficit
Economists predict that the proposed levy on sugar-sweetened beverages set to take effect in April this year in South Africa is unlikely to make a sizeable dent in the fiscal deficit.
In 2016, National Treasury announced a Sugar Beverage Levy on sugar-sweetened beverages scheduled to take effect on April 1, 2018.
When the levy takes effect it will amount to 2.1c per gram of sugar per 100 ml, above 4 g per 100 ml, down from an initial 2.29c per gram of sugar with no exempted amount.
The aim of the levy is to prevent and control obesity in South Africa, but key industry players also view it as a potentially significant new source of revenue that could help plug the growing fiscal deficit.
But PwC economists Lullu Krugel, Maura Feddersen and Thabiso Mofulatsi said that their estimations suggest the tax burden is approximately 10%, given current levels of sugar content, down from about 20% previously.
And, Riek Machar’s spokesman sentenced to death
The spokesman for South Sudan opposition leader Dr Riek Machar, who is in exile in South Africa, has been sentenced to death after being convicted of treason and incitement against the South Sudanese government, Reuters reported.
James Gatdet Dak, who was sentenced yesterday by a high court in the capital Juba, was deported to South Sudan from Kenya in November 2016 in breach of international law, according to the United Nations.
In addition to the death sentence Dak was also given 21 years’ imprisonment on charges of conspiracy and incitement against President Salva Kiir’s government.
Monyluak Alor Kuol, Dak’s former lawyer who resigned last month in protest against the case’s handling, said the sentencing violated a ceasefire signed in December, which called for the release of all prisoners and detainees.
That’s a roundup of news making headlines today
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