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Daily Podcast – February 20, 2024


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Daily Podcast – February 20, 2024

20th February 2024


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February 20, 2024.

For Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I’m Lynne Davies.



Making headlines:


Unemployment rate worsens to 32.1%

SIU gets green light from Ramaphosa to investigate Home Affairs, PRASA

And, South Africa asks World Court to find Israeli occupation illegal


Unemployment rate worsens to 32.1%

South Africa's unemployment rate worsened by 0.2 of a percentage point to 32.1% in the fourth quarter of 2023, compared with 31.9% in the third quarter.

Statistics South Africa's Quarterly Labour Force Survey shows that the number of employed persons decreased by 22 000 to 16.7-million in the fourth quarter, while the number of unemployed persons increased by 46 000 to 7.9-million.

Additionally, the number of people who were not economically active for reasons other than discouragement increased by 218 000 to 13.4-million, while discouraged workseekers decreased by 107 000 in the fourth quarter. This resulted in a net increase of 111 000 in the not economically active population.


SIU gets green light from Ramaphosa to investigate Home Affairs, PRASA

The Special Investigating Unit is set to probe maladministration at Home Affairs and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa following proclamations signed by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

The investigations at Home Affairs relate to the issuing of permits, visas and citizenship and will span 20 years – between 2004 and 2024. The SIU will also investigate improper or unlawful conduct by officials or employees of Home Affairs in relation to the installation of T200 firewalls.

In the case of PRASA, the SIU will probe tenders awarded in the supply of locomotives to Swifambo Rail Leasing, as well as the supply and maintenance of an integrated security access management system at various train stations to Siyangena Technologies. PRASA’s Group Insurance department will also come under investigation for fraudulent liability claims and the SIU will look at the employment of ghost employees at the State rail entity.

The SIU has also been tasked by Ramaphosa to recover any financial losses the State may have incurred.


South Africa asks World Court to find Israeli occupation illegal

South Africa has urged the International Court of Justice to issue a non-binding legal opinion that the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories is illegal, arguing it would help efforts to reach a settlement.

Representatives of South Africa opened the second day of hearings at the ICJ, also known as the World Court, in the Hague. The hearing follows a request by the UN General Assembly for an advisory, or non-binding, opinion on the occupation in 2022. More than 50 states will present arguments until February 26.

On Monday, Palestinian representatives asked the UN's highest court to declare Israel's occupation of their territory illegal, also saying the court's advisory opinion could contribute to a two-state solution and a lasting peace.

Israel is not attending the hearings but sent a written statement, saying an advisory opinion would be harmful to achieving a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians.

The judges are expected to take roughly six months to issue an opinion on the request, which also asks them to consider the legal status of the occupation and its consequences.


That’s a roundup of news making headlines today

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