July 31, 2012
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I’m Motshabi Hoaeane.
The African National Congress national executive committee acknowledges the Limpopo textbook saga as a government failure.
Security comes into focus as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton heads to Africa.
And, an Egyptian court’s move suspends a constitution disagreement.
The African National Congress's national executive committee (or NEC) has acknowledged that the late delivery of textbooks in Limpopo was a "serious failure" by government.
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said that the NEC considered the lack of delivery of books in Limpopo as shocking and unacceptable. He believes that whosoever is found to be responsible must face stern action that may include criminal charges.
The NEC acknowledged that this is a serious failure on the part of government and the department of education in particular at both national and provincial level.
Many organisations and people, including the ANC Youth League and the Congress of South African Trade Unions, hold Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga responsible for the saga and have called for her axing.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton departs this week on a trip that will take her both to Africa's newest nation, South Sudan, and on a visit to the continent's elder statesman, 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.
Clinton's public focus will be on Africa's democratic achievements and economic potential. However, the trip will also underscore US security ties in the face of an array of growing threats from Islamist extremists to narcotics cartels.
The head of the Africa programme at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, Jennifer Cooke, says that security threats are becoming much more visible and in some ways, more dangerous than they were before.
The struggle over Egypt's new constitution has been temporarily suspended. This follows a court deferral until late September of the next step in a legal row that had threatened the dissolution of the body writing it.
The adjournment of a battle that has overshadowed one of the main components of Egypt's transition to democracy after the Arab Spring uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak could give the current constitutional assembly time to complete its work.
This would give a boost to Islamists, including the Muslim Brotherhood, who have a big say in the body. It may also stave off any move by the influential military to form a new assembly.
Also making headlines:
A study from the University of Leeds shows that East Africa's forests are shrinking.
The ANC Youth League is confident that nationalization will be enforced.
And, the World Bank stands ready to help governments respond to increasing grain prices.
That’s a roundup of news making headlines today.