ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe. Saying “Zuma’s relationship with the Guptas is none of the ANC’s business” is disingenuous. It speaks to the party’s credibility, and is certainly taxpayers’ business.
Seat 1 of L’Académie Francaise Claude Dagens. Outraged at a proposed increase of English-language courses at French universities, the academy is, with others, taking it to parliament. Quelle surprise, etc.
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi, for his tortured logic at a launch event in Kimberley at the weekend that saw him ultimately and speciously manage to blame big business for xenophobic attacks.
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies, for promising a redrafting of the Licensing of Businesses Bill after a uniformly negative response to the first draft — but doing away with it altogether would be better still.
US President Barack Obama, forfiring a senior Internal Revenue Service official on finding the man’s Cincinnati office was targeting Tea Party organisations and other conservative groups for special scrutiny.
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba, for wanting to establish a mine development fund to finance the early development of coal mines and assist emerging black coal miners Also, it will make Greenpeace mad as hell.
President Jacob Zuma made good use of the World Economic Forum meeting in Cape Town to improve relations with Nigeria and Kenya, two essential partners in SA’s efforts to keep Africa’s development on track.
Actress Angelina Jolie, whose decision to tell the world about her preventative double mastectomy could save countless lives if other women at high risk of breast cancer are encouraged to follow suit.
President Jacob Zuma. The Special Investigating Unit has halted its inquiry into the president’s Nkandla upgrade as it needs an official proclamation to continue, and only the president can issue it. See the beauty?
Nigerian billionaire businessman Aliko Dangote. Contrary to the popular perception, there is an awful lot SA can learn from Africa’s most populous nation — including how not to go about implementing BEE.
SA’s Fifth Lady, Thobeka Zuma , who is demanding compensation from SA Airlink over the alleged theft of jewellery worth R500,000 from her unlocked bag during a flight. Welcome to our world.
Statistician-general Pali Lehohla. Stating the obvious is not his job, but if nobody else in the government is prepared to acknowledge the link between the unemployment and education crises, good for him.
Transport Minister Ben Martins, for, along with Acsa, declining the Guptas’ request for special privileges at OR Tambo, including wanting part of the airport shut down and their guests to bypass baggage handling.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Asian Development Bank delegates going to New Delhi have been warned not to bare their legs or wear short skirts due to sexual harassment. Control your male populace!
Chief of state protocol Bruce Koloane. He has been suspended amid a probe into how the Gupta family chartered a jet and was inexplicably allowed to land at Air Force Base Waterkloof. Heads must roll.
Former PetroSA chairman Benny Mokaba. His resignation amid controversial negotiations with Engen is to be welcomed — but if it is linked to questionable payments of R1bn, he can’t just walk away without repercussions.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. Zanu (PF) boycotted a meeting with President Jacob Zuma’s facilitation team, which is seen as evidence that the party does not want to implement electoral reforms.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, for finally implementing the Protection from Harassment Act. Good news for potential victims, but did it really have to take two years after being signed into law?
UK businessman Jim McCormick, for being guilty of selling fake bomb detectors to Iraq and other war zones. He made £55m but it may have led to many deaths, for which he may get a paltry 10 years in prison.
President Jacob Zuma. With two trade unions, and thousands of schoolchildren and their parents tired of the poor level of education, why is he still ignoring calls for Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga’s removal?
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. Its reputation already poor, now comes news that the SAPS is not reporting allegations of its own criminal acts to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate, as required by law.
President Jacob Zuma, for distancing himself even further from Thabo Mbeki’s dismal AIDS policies in giving national orders to three prominent medical scientists who challenged Mbeki’s thinking at the time.
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies. His draft Licensing of Businesses Bill will make doing business even more difficult than it already is, adding layers of pointless bureaucracy and metres of red tape.
Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani, for staying committed to SA in spite of growing calls to disinvest amid poor performance, noting that the company remains “important to SA’s longer-term development prospects”.
South Gauteng High Court judge Zeenat Carelse, for ruling that grandparents who raise their grandchildren should qualify for a foster care grant. A sensible acknowledgement of SA’s social and familial reality.
The British television commentator who mistook IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi for the “dapper-looking” singer Ray Charles at Margaret Thatcher’s funeral. Perhaps all dead music icons look the same to the British.
Mining magnate Mick Davis. He has taken Xstrata from a $500m business to a $50bn one, and fully deserves his payout — and we expect he might be spending more time in SA, which might be good for us too.
Distell group MD Jan Scannell, for the purchase of Burn Stewart Distillers, which comes with three single malt distilleries. It’s good to see our alcohol-based businesses putting their money where their palates are.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa, for confiscating 45 cellphones from officers who took photos of Oscar Pistorius after his arrest to sell to the media. However, his force should know this is outrageous to begin with.
Prasa CEO Lucky Montana, for having his contract renewed until 2016, ensuring he will oversee the completion of the testing and commissioning of SA’s new commuter rail system, which he largely instigated.
Zimbabwe Reserve Bank governor Gideon Gono, for being the voice of reason and calm — never easy when Robert Mugabe is watching you — amid that country’s attempts to seize majority stakes in foreign banks.
Political analyst Liepollo Pheko, for laying charges “as a matter of principle” against former AWB leader Andre Visagie for the “don’t touch me on my studio” debacle. Why did it take three years for her principles to kick in?
Convicted murderer Clive Derby-Lewis. Wanting to meet Chris Hani’s widow to apologise is too little too late and he can only presume to do so because the death penalty was abolished in time to save him.
Sadtu general secretary Mugwena Maluleke, for saying teachers will “only be reporting to schools to teach. They will not perform extra duties”. Is this a threat or a promise to actually do the job they’re paid for?
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, for dishing up more of his incomprehensible drivel, this time saying the mining sector sees mine workers as a vehicle to hijack and steal the revolution. Say what?
ANC chief whip Mathole Motshegka, for warning ill-disciplined MPs that failing to attend committee meetings or sittings of the National Assembly will see them removed from the electoral list. Quite right too.
President Jacob Zuma. His belief that “the problem with SA is that everyone wants to govern” is entirely of his own doing. He makes it look so damn easy and even more rewarding — who wouldn’t want the job?
Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, for the city sensibly vetoing the move to ban liquor sales on Sunday, as it would have dire consequences for businesses. Let’s hope Gauteng authorities will come to the party on this too.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi. Paramedics say Addington Hospital had no doctor available, the hospital says no theatre was available due to renovations — either way, two men are now dead unnecessarily.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane. Answering a query from the DA, she noted she has a R100,000 monthly limit on her government credit card but spent only R26,453 on it last year. Well held!
Eskom CEO Brian Dames, for sending his financial director, Paul O’Flaherty, to Medupi to troubleshoot the myriad problems with which the project is beset. Let’s hope his beady eye sees things run more smoothly.
Communications Minister Dina Pule. It seems unanimous that her “not knowing where her powers start and end” is what has led to the exodus of SABC directors, leaving it in a worrying governance crisis.
Alstom CEO Patrick Kron, for shoddy and tardy work in installing critical software at Medupi, which has failed repeatedly in the past 18 months. Can we trust Alstom that the delay will not affect the project?
Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. Copper theft is reportedly so rife that the navy’s Silvermine communications centre can no longer support the navy’s own radio communications. Do something!
TopTV CEO Eddie Mbalo. In support of his application for porn channels and asked if he would watch them, he said: “Absolutely. In fact, I would watch them with my wife.” This is way too much information.
Auditor-general Terence Nombembe, for his continued and tireless work in trying to get government departments to toe the financial line. It’s often a thankless task but he soldiers on, often without reward.
Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. Of the 26 Gripen jet fighters purchased as part of the infamous arms deal, 12 have been mothballed — and there are only six qualified pilots anyway. What gives?
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba, for confirming that suspended acting South African Airways CEO Vuyisile Kona will not be given a golden handshake, noting “we have neither the means nor the appetite” for it.
Correctional Services Minister Sbu Ndebele. The auditor-general has found irregularities in his department with R2bn spent on consultants in three years, yet we still have some of the worst prisons in the world.
Skywise CEO Rodney James. Hopefully having learnt some important lessons from 1time’s demise, the launch of a new budget airline is good news for South African consumers and the sector in general.
Police commissioner Riah Phiyega. According to a Futurefact survey conducted last year, 35% of South Africans are afraid of our police. Their reputation is damaging that of South Africa locally and internationally.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu. South Africa’s mining policies now put us firmly in the bottom half of the rankings of world mining destinations. On the up side, we are at least better than Zimbabwe. Just.
Free State Premier Ace Magashule, for reportedly spending about R140m on developing a new, integrated website for the province. Those in the technological know say it should have cost about R360.
ANC chief whip Mathole Motshekga, for warning ill-disciplined MPs that failing to attend committee meetings or sittings of the National Assembly will see them removed from the electoral lists. Quite right too.
Minister for Women, Children and People with Disabilities Lulu Xingwana, for triggering worldwide outrage over her bigoted comments about Afrikaans men and having to eat a big slice of humble pie.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. Despite a pretty dire backdrop of rising costs, sluggish growth, high debt levels and labour unrest, he managed to present a moderate and moderately positive budget.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, for complaining “with great concern” that teachers were absent for a collective 7.5-million days last year, as if it is beyond her control. Fix it, it’s part of your job!
Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, for passing Jeremy Gauntlett over, saying the JSC would “not be populist”, after a few people had said Gauntlett was a populist choice. Why not be populist? It all smacks of politicking.
Director Malik Bendjelloul, for the Oscar-winning Searching for Sugar Man, about two South Africans and their search for Rodriguez, the singer every self-respecting citizen had in their collection.
Minister in the Presidency Trevor Manuel, for warning that the proposed electricity hikes are “unacceptable” and for noting that rapid increases in administered prices, including energy, have to be guarded against.
Public Service and Administration Minister Lindiwe Sisulu. She said she would stop public servants’ shenanigans and she has; no more business with the private sector, getting qualified audits, etc. Good news.
South African navy head Adm Johannes Refiloe Mudimu, for failing to keep patrol vessels operational, with six losing their certification for being fit for sea. If the navy can’t keep boats afloat, who can?
Judicial Service Commission head Mogoeng Mogoeng. There is an obvious lack of women in the list of candidates for the Constitutional Court and a large group thinks the system is “failing women”.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames. Eskom admits to spying on environmental groups Earthlife Africa and Greenpeace and their activities, but promises it will stop now it’s been rumbled. Who might it spy on next?
Egypt’s culture minister, Mohammed Saber Arab, is back at work after reportedly resigning to protest at police brutality, but now says it was because his ministry “faced difficulties”. We take back our earlier green light.
Italian businessman Silvio Berlusconi. His lawyers persuaded the Italian judiciary his political campaign was a legitimate reason to interrupt the case against him for paying for sex with a minor. Who did he pay for this?
Nigerian football coach Stephen “Big Boss” Keshi, for lifting the Africa Cup of Nations as both captain, in 1994, and as coach on Sunday night, leading a young team to a dream win. Well done.
Western Cape ANC leader Marius Fransman, for using the memorial service of a gang-raped and eviscerated Bredasdorp girl as a political platform to launch a personal attack on two DA MECs. For shame.
One of the keepers of the Timbuktu manuscripts, Abdul Kader Haidara. “I bought every tin box I could find … and my staff and I filled them with manuscripts until the library was empty.” The world owes him.
SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande , for his incomprehensible statement about education not being an essential service: “The kind of education we must make essential must be a liberating one”. What?
British Prime Minister David Cameron, for noting, when the House of Commons approved moves towards legalising gay marriage by 400 to 175, that it was “an important step forward that strengthens society”.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane. Taxpayers have spent R1.2m on furniture (furniture!) for her in the past four years (and another R3.2m for her predecessor), the equivalent of 15 new RDP houses.
Acting National Prosecuting Authority head Nomgcobo Jiba, for the NPA’s being broke, largely due to overspending and “irregular expenditure” for which disciplinary action is being taken. Heal thyself, etc.
Proteas captain Graeme Smith, for successfully captaining his 100th Test match at the weekend, being the first man to achieve such a milestone, and doing so with a respectable half-century.
Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane, for denying the National Youth Development Agency’s request to have its funding tripled to R1.08bn, noting it managed to spend only 40% of its budget last year.
Malawi President Joyce Banda, for selling off the presidential jet — which her predecessor paid $13.3m for amid much criticism five years ago — as a sensible cost-cutting exercise. It will go to the highest bidder.
Billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe, forgiving half of the funds flowing from his family’s assets to the Motsepe Foundation to address education and health in South Africa. Let’s hope there’s a knock-on effect.
Acting ANC Youth League president Ronald Lamola, for finally “accepting” that Julius Malema is no longer the league’s president. It took a while but it’s great to hear the obvious has now been grasped.
Search Third Umpire
Businessman and former Busa vice-president Mthunzi Mdwaba, for revealing, as others have, that the government’s desire to engage with the private sector is tenuous at best, with meetings being “a formality”.
National Union of Mineworkers general secretary Frans Baleni. As predicted by the Third Umpire last month, wage demands have gone doolally tap, with the union wanting increases of up to 60%. Good luck with that.
One of China’s four vice-premiers, Wang Yang, for bravely pointing out irritating habits of Chinese tourists, including “talking loudly in public, jay walking, spitting and carving characters on items in scenic zones”.
Former Hawks spokesman McIntosh Polela, who has now been officially fired after his “Vaseline tweet” and his suspension at the end of March — but he has earned a whopping R300,000 since then.
Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, for wanting low-cost holiday resorts for “ordinary South Africans” — about time, foreign currency earners have had the run of the country for too long.
Mpumalanga co-operative governance and traditional affairs MEC Simon Skhosana. Conveying condolences to the families of 20 boys who died at initiation schools is not enough — end this carnage!
Former Springbok captain John Smit is finally set to hang up his boots after Saracens failed to make the English Premiership final. One World Cup, two Tri-Nations and a series win over the Lions. Not bad.
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi. His alarmist cries about unemployment in the country being a “ticking time bomb” have little validity when he’s doing everything in his power to stymie job-creation efforts.
Wits University vice-chancellor Adam Habib for insisting, after students disrupted an Israeli pianist’s concert, the institution will remain a “free space” and take no formal position on the Israel-Palestine issue.
Deputy Public Protector Kevin Malunga, for going behind his boss’s back to ingratiate himself with Parliament’s justice committee, with which she had just clashed in a dispute over its powers of oversight.
Congolese businessman and politician Moïse Katumbi Chapwe, owner of football club TP Mazembe, which pulled just about every dirty trick imaginable in a vain bid to oust Pirates from the Champions League.
Zimbabwe Mines Minister Obert Mpofu. As if the beleaguered industry didn’t have enough on its plate, his department is now considering forcing mines to sell all of their output via the state. Kiss of death.
South Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit, for allowing or condoning suppression of the press in his country, with attacks on journalists and one columnist critical of his government already murdered.
President Jacob Zuma. A recent report shows that public service corruption cost taxpayers nearly R1bn with no “meaningful consequences” for perpetrators. This goes right to the top — the buck starts with him.
Acsa CEO Bongani Maseko, for looking to invest in airports in Africa, which means improved returns for his company and improved airport infrastructure across the continent. Being proactive usually pays.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. She is rightly angered by underwear being used as a misogynistic symbol, saying “I am pained at this open display of denigration, sexual violence and objectification”.
Deputy Public Works Minister Jeremy Cronin, who promises SA the proposed wide-ranging expropriation law will not be abused. No offence, but “trust me, I’m a communist” doesn’t cut it.
The ANC Women’s League, which has got its knickers in a knot after “counter-revolutionary” teachers brandished an outsized pair of undies branded “Angie’s full-brief panties” during a protest.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson, for funding one of the key players in last year’s violent farm workers’ strike. Where to start with how wrong this is, and in so many ways?
Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim, for asking for a fantastical 20% wage increase, partly to “close the apartheid wage gap”. This is surely just a ruse to get the strike season going. Why not ask for 50%?
West Indian cricketer Chris Gayle who, playing for Bangalore in the IPL, scored the fastest century in cricket history — a ton off 30 balls — finishing 175 not out off 66 balls, having hit 17 sixes and 13 fours.
Western Cape Cosatu secretary Tony Ehrenreich, for, along with Sadtu, asking for high-school pupils to take a day off school to join their protest march against education inequality. Hey, leave those kids alone!
Harvard-based economist Kenneth Rogoff. Along with colleague Carmen Reinhart, he made “serious errors” on a report widely used in the US to “justify eliminating the budget deficit”. We recommend Excel for Dummies.
Arts and culture portfolio committee chairwoman Thandile Babalwa Sunduza, for laying charges against metro police; after crashing into her car, cops allegedly surrounded her and called her a whore and a dog.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. As at the end of February almost 10,000 police officers were suspended on full pay, which has cost the state nearly R8.5m since April last year. This needs his immediate attention.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson. The report by Parliament’s research unit proves conclusively that she is not up to the task. She needs to take a long fishing break.
National Union of Metalworkers of SA general secretary Irvin Jim, for his thinly veiled threats about his union not approving foreign welders at Medupi, which are, surely, a prelude to instigating strike action.
Adv Mbuyiseli Madlanga. He has a solid track record in constitutional and administrative law as well with some ground-breaking cases. We congratulate him on being appointed to the Constitutional Court.
Presidency deputy information officer Batandwa Siswana, for saying the DA could not see the Presidential Handbook as its contents are secret, when, in fact, the book doesn’t exist. Same as unicorns, then.
Cardinal Wilfrid Napier, for noting that gay marriage in SA is “tantamount to slavery” and that he can’t be accused of homophobia “because I don’t know any homosexuals”. We can’t for the life of us think why not.
Prasa CEO Lucky Montana, for planning to buy back lease agreements on properties to cut its dependence on subsidies significantly. Such proactivity is to be lauded — and, we hope, copied.
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi, for responding to the HSRC survey that found trust in unions has plummeted, not with fury and denials, but with this: “This survey tells me one thing: improve.”
Academic Prof Jonathan Jansen, for saying he wished people would leave Madiba alone “to die in peace without the constant media glare” — and not that he wished Madiba dead, as some have stupidly interpreted it.
The new CEO of Toyota Africa, Johan van Zyl. He is one of only two non-Japanese senior executives. Installing local directors for regions is a sensible business move by Toyota. We wish Van Zyl well in the new post.
ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, for conflating the state and his own religion, saying Christians are SA's moral conscience, especially with regard to rape, thus insulting every non-Christian citizen.
Golfer Rory McIlroy. You don't walk off the course after eight holes when you're the world number one, saying you're "in a bad place mentally," then later cite toothache. "Diddums!" seems an appropriate response.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. Despite slow GDP growth, the South African Revenue Service managed to rake in R814bn — despite the worrying contraction in corporate income tax due to mining’s many woes.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, for appointing a retired judge to probe allegations of a breach of processes at SARS following media reports. He is quick to pounce — other ministers should take note.
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, for probing the beleaguered Competition Commission amid allegations of misconduct and victimisation. This is an important organisation that needs to be sorted out fast.
National Union of Metalworkers of SA general secretary Irvin Jim, for still banging on about nationalising mines and banks and roundly attacking the National Development Plan when it’s already policy.
President Jacob Zuma. According to a TNS survey of 2,000 people across seven major metropolitan areas, his approval rating is down from 55% a year ago to just 41%, and it’s down across all race groups.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane. The mooted liquor laws for the province include restaurants not serving alcohol on Sundays, which will punish them harshly and just send drinking underground.
Facebook chairman and founder Mark Zuckerberg. According to a BeatBullying study, it is the worst social networking site for trolling, with 87% of teenagers who reported cyberabuse being targeted on Facebook.
Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale. He has failed to spend more than a piddling 9% of his budget on providing sanitation for the rural and semi-urban poor. He has clearly lost interest in his remit.
President Jacob Zuma, for not deigning to meet with his hard-working auditor-general, Terence Nombembe, even once last year — a clear sign of how little he thinks of financial governance in his government.
ANC Western Cape leader Marius Fransman, for alleging that the DA is taking contracts away from Muslims and giving them to Jewish businessmen. Playing the religion card is just as odious as playing the race card.
Planning Minister Trevor Manuel, for so cogently explaining how SA’s “engine room” needs fixing, and for this insightful comment in particular: “It seems that civil servants’ brains have been outsourced.”
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. Disclosing the country’s national key points can hardly be considered a security risk. Would he, for instance, consider keeping SA’s lighthouses hidden? That would be risky indeed.
Hitachi Power Africa CEO Johannes Musel. Accepting full responsibility for rectifying welding faults at the Medupi power station is all well and good but doesn’t mitigate that they were made in the first place.
The OECD’s secretary-general Angel Gurría, for noting that improving the economy is “a very political decision, it’s about political options”. Are the politicians listening?
South African Democratic Teachers Union general secretary Mugwena Maluleke. Calling for Angie Motshekga’s resignation should have come when pupils were under threat, not only now that teachers are.
Pepkor Group chairman Christo Wiese. For being restrained and interdicted from infringing on the Adidas trademark and from passing off its own footwear as that of Adidas. Been putting their foot in it, it seems.
ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa, for conflating the state and his own religion, saying Christians are SA’s moral conscience, especially with regard to rape, thus insulting every non-Christian citizen.
Golfer Rory McIlroy. You don’t walk off the course after eight holes when you’re the world number one, saying you’re “in a bad place mentally”, then later cite toothache. “Diddums!” seems an appropriate response.
Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) CEO Dr Sibusiso Sibisi, for listing its technologies and opening its intellectual property vaults to companies, making it easier to do business with the CSIR.
Acting SABC chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng, for quietly being “released” with no clarity on his tenure, including on whether he was actually qualified to do the job in the first place.
Department of Transport director-general George Mahlalela, for going a ridiculous 74% over budget on the taxi recapitalisation programme. Conveniently, his contract has expired and won’t be renewed.
KwaZulu-Natal ANC MP Happy Blose. She employed her son as her driver. Two weeks ago he wrote the car off. He is 21. At 16 he was in an accident that killed two people, which case is still outstanding. The end.
Zambian President Michael Sata, for revoking three mining licences from Chinese company Collum Coal due to safety concerns, a lack of environmental compliance and a failure to pay mineral royalties.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu, for engaging so quickly with the industry to agree, in principle, on a protocol to curb violence at platinum mines, proof that lessons are being learnt in the sector.
North West social development MEC Mosetsanagape Mokomele-Mothibi, for using R174,000 of taxpayers’ money for her friend and other officials to attend the Mangaung conference. It’s pay back time.
Minister of Women, Children and People with Disabilities Lulu Xingwana, for reportedly spending R2.1m of the state’s funds on decorating her department’s head office. If it’s not all Ming vases, she got ripped off.
Public Service and Administration Minister Lindiwe Sisulu. It’s great that even Cosatu supports your call to ban public servants from doing business with the state, but when exactly is it going to happen?
Compensation Fund commissioner Shadrack Mkhonto, for such poor administration, not lack of funding, that hospitals and doctors will no longer treat patients due to non payment going back years.
Communications Minister Dina Pule. Ending the fight with broadcasters over set-top boxes comes too late and after lengthy and costly legal battles — and suspiciously close to her possibly being axed.
Pope Benedict, for having the insight and good sense to step down due to him “no longer having the strength” to continue in the post because of his advanced age of 85.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, for guidelines for assessing new, and usually expensive, medicines, bringing us more in line with international practices and making medicine pricing more transparent for all parties.
FNB CEO Michael Jordaan, for being a far better communicator than the bank’s own communications team, in explaining exactly what happened regarding the ANC and the now (in)famous ad campaign.
Burkina Faso soccer coach Paul Put. Despite the team being one of the minnows in the sport, they have pulled themselves up by their bootstraps and fully deserve to be in the Africa n Nations Cup final.
Egypt’s Culture Minister Mohammed Saber Arab, for resigning after police were filmed beating and dragging a naked man outside the president’s palace, in protest at the police abuse. A man of principle.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, for this comment, despite it being a long time coming: “Education is essential for society to uplift itself.” Just saying it out loud is a step in the right direction.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu. Her Draft Mineral Development Amendment Bill gives power to the state, but her conciliatory speeches to business are about partnerships. So which is it?
Eastern Cape health MEC Sicelo Gqobana, for allowing employees to be “encouraged” to resign amid widespread fraud that may amount to more than R1bn, as well as staggering criminal practices by employees.
Gauteng roads and transport MEC Ismail Vadi. His warning that cheap tuk-tuk services pose “unhealthy competition” to other public transport is disingenuous — and “unhealthy competition” is an oxymoron.
DA leader Helen Zille. She is starting to sound too shrill and defensive — and newspapers openly favourable to the government exist around the world in most democracies. We have plenty of independent ones.
The UK’s Channel Four chairman Terence Burns, for declaring cellphone footage taken at Marikana has been overlooked by the Farlam commission. It hasn’t, and keep out of our judicial affairs.
Outgoing Anglo American CEO Cynthia Carroll. The company is to take a $4bn impairment charge on the Minas-Rio an iron ore project in Brazil that will now cost $8.8bn, following large cost overruns and delays, initiated on her watch.
African Union Commission chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, for not mobilising African forces to protect the irreplaceable library at Timbuktu, instead waiting for western forces to mobilise first.