SpaceX founder Elon Musk for the successful launch of the firm’s Falcon 9 rocket carrying a commercial satellite, and in so doing fulfilling every child’s dream of being able to send a rocket to space.
Energy Minister Ben Martins for deciding to delay plans to build a costly nuclear power station and suggesting other cheaper electricity sources such as shale gas should be considered as alternatives.
Barclays Africa CEO Maria Ramos who is planning to spend about R1.2bn on refurbishing the bank’s branches in order to try and win back some of its customers that it has lost to rival Capitec.
Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, for bringing his country close to revolution after he decided not to join the European Union and rather keep the country aligned to its former Russian master.
Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, for achieving a clean audit for the city’s finances. This should actually be the norm for every city and town in the country, as opposed to being the exception.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe for finally waking up to the fact that the continued pursuit of Congress of South African Trade Unions boss Zwelinzima Vavi could lead to the break-up of the tripartite alliance.
Head of the Catholic Church Pope Francis. He was refreshingly frank and honest about some of the problems facing the church, though he did dodge some of the thornier issues, such as abortion.
Outgoing Transaction Capital CEO Mark Lamberti for his Midas touch. He was instrumental in Massmart’s success. A feat he has now repeated at Transaction Capital, growing it to a R4bn company.
Telkom chief financial officer Jacques Schindehütte. First he was suspended from Telkom, now it has emerged that while at Absa he sent confidential e-mails from the bank’s CEO to a third party.
US Secretary of State John Kerry, for negotiating a deal with Iran which will see the country halt its attempts to acquire weapons grade uranium in exchange for the selected lifting of sanctions.
Human Settlements Minister Connie September for using her power to get officials in KwaZulu-Natal scrambling to give her a response on what happened at the Tongaat mall collapse.
Bafana coach Gordon Igesund, whose shares with the South African public are at a record high as much for Tuesday’s surprise win over world champions Spain as for the passion with which he approaches the job.
Nampak CEO Andrew Marshall. Investors are clearly pleased about the group’s $301m acquisition of a beverage can manufacturer in Nigeria, pushing the share price up more than 3%.
National Empowerment Fund CEO Philisiwe Mthethwa, who has been cleared of allegations of wrongdoing following an independent forensic investigation by audit firm Deloitte.
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. After 24 years and 200 Tests, the “Little Master” has finally left the field. He is not only one of the game’s finest batsmen, he is also a true gentleman.
President Jacob Zuma. More than R30bn of taxpayers’ money is misspent by public servants, yet not a single person has been held accountable or has been prosecuted.
Amcu president Joseph Mathunjwa, for dropping the demand that mine workers be paid a minimum R12,500 a month, a demand which was unsustainable and has caused significant conflict in the industry.
Artist Jane Alexander. The sale of her sculpture, Untitled, for R5.5m at an auction on Monday has smashed the records for a South African sculpture. More than double the previous record of R2.2m.
Lonmin CEO Ben Magara for tackling the fractious relationship the platinum miner has had with its employees, and along the way managing to post its best output at its operations in six years.
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, for not being intimidated by the government’s security cluster into handing over her report on Nkandla to them for censoring.
DA leader Helen Zille, for attempting to shift the blame for her party’s flip-flopping over the Employment Equity Amendment Bill onto her MPs in the economic development portfolio.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa for reintroducing a clause which will limit foreign ownership of security companies. Yet another blow to SA’s status as an investor-friendly destination.
President Jacob Zuma for doing his bit towards ending the 20-month rebellion in the Democratic Republic of Congo at a summit in Pretoria. An important step in bringing peace and stability to Central Africa.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe for his attack on Public Protector Thuli Madonsela. An obvious attempt to undermine her legitimacy ahead of the release of her report on Nkandla.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu, who was quick to threaten to withdraw Anglo Platinum’s mining licence but remains deathly quiet on the Guptas mining without a licence.
African Bank CEO Leon Kirkinis for accepting responsibility for the bank’s misfortunes and offering to resign. An offer rejected by the board. If only more people followed his lead.
US Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius. She is shouldering the blame for the Python-esque bumbling incompetence that is the attempted roll-out of Obamacare’s online registration.
Police commissioner Riah Phiyega. The latest in a long list of gaffes are reports of taped conversations of her acknowledging the investigations against one of her senior officials. It may be time for a career change.
Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel, for being only the fourth man, and the youngest, to win four successive drivers’ championships and doing so in style with a win in India when fifth place would have done.
President Jacob Zuma. According to a study by Stellenbosch University, SA’s black middle class has grown from 350,000 in 1993 to almost 3-million last year and racial inequality has dramatically declined. Good work.
Black Business Council CEO Xolani Qubeka, for the entirely unhelpful blaming of cartels on “highly educated white male executives in dark suits”. Really? Men in black? His paranoia is starting to show.
ANC chief whip Stone Sizani. The National Lotteries Amendment Bill could not be passed this week because of poor attendance by ANC MPs — the third time this has happened on his watch. Where is his whip
Judge Lebotsang Bosielo, for putting a flea in the ear of those who flout court requirements, such as the NPA and the justice minister, who filed affidavits late, which were duly ignored. The rules must apply to everyone.
South African Airways CEO Monwabisi Kalawe, for proactively attempting to build the national carrier’s capacity and moving it aggressively into the rest of Africa as well as establishing a travel hub in West Africa.
Outgoing Auditor-General Terence Nombembe, for bemoaning SA’s high levels of tolerance for his audit disclaimers issued against municipalities and some government departments. He will be missed.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames, for signing an agreement to fund a 100MW solar plant in the Northern Cape, worth R1.3bn. This should keep the greens happy and proves Eskom’s commitment to cleaner power in SA.
Security and constitutional development committee’s Free State delegate Dennis Bloem, for spear-heading a charge by the provinces to get the Traditional Courts Bill kicked back after it turned up, unasked, in Parliament again.
Bench Mark head Bishop Jo Seoka. Calling for the suspension of Lonmin’s licence is a mindless reaction; it can only fulfil its environmental and socioeconomic remit by staying in business and employing people.
Advocate Dali Mpofu. His application for the state, via Legal Aid, to pay the legal bills for Marikana survivors, whom he represents, has been approved by the high court. He, and the court, are serving the survivors well.
Businessman Roger Jardine, for his candid summation of SA’s public and private sector collusion and corruption becoming part of the fabric of society and being the biggest post-apartheid business scandal.
Former ANC treasurer-general Mathews Phosa, for daring to say this: “We are a government, and placing the blame on the past, apartheid, race, and other external factors does not wash anymore.” Brave words indeed.
ANC Women’s League president Angie Motshekga. Saying it is a “futile battle” to push for a female president or deputy president due to “traditions” is defeatist — and we have already had a female deputy president.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. It seems she, too, has had enough with Sadtu, saying she will“utilise her discretion” and introduce competency tests for markers, whether Sadtu likes it or not. About time.
President Jacob Zuma, for saying, with a straight face: “God has made a connection between the government and the church” and that’s why people “should pray for it”. Number One is sounding a bit like Robert Mugabe.
Woolworths chairman Simon Susman. He may be stating the obvious by saying SA needs a fresh economic philosophy, but we need a lot more businesspeople to create the space in which to be critical.
President Jacob Zuma, for being lambasted by the IMF, which notes that global conditions alone cannot be blamed for SA’s poor growth, as Zuma has said, but on domestic factors, such as strikes and poor policies, too.
Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi, for saying the DA is “obsessed with Jacob Zuma” in wanting the Nkandla report made public. Zuma is the president; the DA is the official opposition: obsession is a requirement.
Former Glencore Xstrata head Mick Davis, for talking to investors about building a new mid-tier mining company at a time when the beleaguered sector badly needs some new blood and some new enthusiasm.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe, for noting, in the wake of the Kenya mall attack, that SA needs tighter immigration laws and processes and stronger security features on our ID documents. Better late than never.
Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub, for sticking it to Telkom by entering into talks about a takeover of Indian-owned Neotel, reported to be worth R5bn. You snooze you lose, and Telkom has been caught napping.
Telkom’s new group CEO, Sipho Maseko, for telling unions the company is in trouble and turning it around will require effort from everyone. Few CEOs are this commendably honest with their staff and its unions.
Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti, for intervening in SA’s sugar industry to stop its financial haemorrhaging and potential job losses due to sugar imports reaching unacceptable levels.
US Securities Exchange Commission chairwoman Mary Jo White. A Gold Field’s empowerment deal has been flagged as corrupt by the US; many have said BEE transactions institutionalise corruption, so expect more.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi. It took hearing of babies born by cellphone light and beds shared with bleeding patients to create a task team to look at Eastern Cape hospitals; he should have been on this years ago.
SABC acting chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng, for the world’s worst audit: no supporting documents for R1.5bn spent; no evidence of TV licence fees collected; R106m of irregular expenditure, etc, etc.
ANC Youth League national task team convener Mzwandile Masina, for apologising to everyone it has wronged or insulted. Note the apology is retroactive; no apology for future wrongs or insults has been made.
Solidarity general secretary Gideon du Plessis, for accepting the offered wage increase, noting it did so “given the conditions … and in the hope the agreement will promote the sustainability of the (gold) industry”.
Swaziland’s King Mswati. A report says his country is on an unsustainable economic trajectory, has controversial expenditure on the monarchy, and a huge public-sector wage bill — it’s time to rein in his reign.
Springbok rugby coach Heyneke Meyer, for helping the Boks to thrash Australia in their own backyard with their record 38-12 win in Brisbane, their first win there since 1971. Basically, they caught the Wallabies bludging.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. According to a report, our township and rural schoolchildren lag as much as two years behind those in the suburbs. See above to understand the effect of this on the country.
President Jacob Zuma. Moves to clip the wings of Trevor Manuel’s National Planning Commission, which already has no executive powers, is just more muzzling of any possibility of dissent against his ruling party.
Financial Services Board head Dube Tshidi , for showing up the JSE and Strate by opposing a narrow reading of new privacy laws, which would have dramatically reduced the transparency and efficiency of markets.
Social Security Minister Bathabile Dlamini, for launching Project Mikondzo, a new social security project which will extend the reach of the department’s services to 1,300 of the poorest wards in the country.
SACP deputy secretary-general and poet Jeremy Cronin, for citing Sasol’s US operations as “emblematic” of disinvestment, ignoring that 66% of Sasol’s operations are in SA and they are our largest corporate taxpayer.
The Salvation Army, for noting, “If Jesus Christ were on earth today he would be standing beside us at Sexpo”; the army is attending the sex-related expo to promote a “Christian understanding of sexuality”. And to browse.
Sadtu general secretary Mugwena Maluleke, for blocking competency tests for matric exam markers, now postponed for a full year, despite being recommended to Parliament. Just what are they afraid of?
President Jacob Zuma. SA’s navy has effectively been grounded with the Seriti Commission being told it cannot staff each warship or submarine with qualified personnel at all times. The buck has to stop with him.
Liberian Education Minister Etmonia David-Tarpeh. Not one of the country’s students passed the university entrance exam, due largely to poor English skills. And again, our Angie doesn’t look too bad.
North West Premier Thandi Modise. Handing over farm land worth R60m to the Barolong Boo Mariba Traditional Council is good news, but who exactly now owns the land, and will keep it productive, is unclear.
Kudos to Agang SA leader Mamphela Ramphele for raising the bar when it comes to personal financial transparency — and especially for managing to amass a R55m fortune without even being in the government.
Outgoing Accelerate Cape Town chairman Jock McKenzie, for reminding the government that it needs to take constructive criticism from business more seriously. Better late than never, we suppose.
Communications Minister Yunus Carrim for openly admitting that the department he took over from the disgraced Dina Pule is filled with senior managers “settling scores” and is “weak and divided”.
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies. Putting on a brave face is all very well, but welcoming the collapse of the rand as a boon for the industrial sector smacks of desperation. Is this what we’ve been reduced to?
Public Investment Corporation CEO Elias Masilela. Rather than just whinge about executive pay being excessive in SA, his organisation is actually using its shareholder power to demand a link to performance.
Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini. Timothy Nast’s move to Gauteng’s planning commission is the “most ... backward decision … in the history of (the) Gauteng government”. We’re sure there have been worse.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi. When needing a surgical procedure, he put his body where his budget is and went to a public hospital, the Steve Biko Academic Hospital. Wait until he tries Baragwanath though… .
Nigerian Education Minister Ruqayyatu Rufa’i. At a training centre gathering, a primary school teacher could not read her own sworn affidavit, tendered as part of her credentials. This makes even our Angie look good.
Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant. The Adcorp Employment Index reports the economy shed 37,288 jobs in July, the worst monthly performance since 2009, largely blamed on red tape and aggressive labour regulations.
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela, for nipping Sekunjalo’s bid for the fishing patrol tender in the bud by asking that it be dropped from tendering as it’s still under investigation for discrepancies two years ago.
ANC chief whip Stone Sizani. Surely reassigning the disgraced Dina Pule to Parliament’s transport committee — after she misused public funds for private overseas trips — is putting her in temptation’s way?
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, for wanting to eliminate smoking in SA altogether, with “no apology”. His focus on alcohol and smoking, at the expense of other issues, is turning into an unhealthy obsession.
Joburg mayor Parks Tau. Delivering a R6,000 bill and threatening letter to Nelson Mandela’s house proves that the municipality still hasn’t got the billing crisis sorted out — they can’t even get an address right!
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. Days after news of his re-election, his country’s stocks plummet 11% as the reality of another four years of his power sinks in. Perhaps Jacob Zuma will congratulate him for this too.
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi. As he has apologised to Cosatu for his sexual indiscretions, and the charge of rape has been withdrawn, he should be allowed to continue at his job without any more to-do.
Reserve Bank governor Gill Marcus, for her continued criticism of the government’s lack of leadership and failed economic and labour policies — and unlike some detractors, she has the stats to prove it.
Wits University vice-chancellor Adam Habib, for moving so quickly to fire two staff members who were found guilty, by an internal disciplinary committee, of sexual harassment and sexual assault.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. “If you join a competition with … only winning or losing, you can’t be both. If you lose you must surrender to those who have won.” What a fine grasp of the electoral process!
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. The 1,448 cops who committed criminal offences still have jobs and now he wants a review so they can give their side of the story. Other criminals only get to do that in court.
Zwelinzima Vavi’s unidentified accuser. First it was rape, then sexual harassment, now it’s all withdrawn. With such high levels of sexual violence in SA, she is undermining the work being done to curb it.
Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani. His blunt and frank talk of the company’s failings — which no CEO has ever done — is, followers of the company say, a breath of fresh air, rousing audiences to applause. Keep it up.
Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. The air force’s 30 Agusta helicopters and 26 Gripen fighter jets are idle in storage, or being used for parts! How did she get — and get to keep — this job?
Malawian President Joyce Banda. A man was arrested for referring to her as stupid and a failure. The judge noted ‘young people should not take advantage of freedoms … to disrespect authority’. What freedoms?
Nafcoc president Joe Hlongwane, for expelling the former president and other executives for failing, among other shortcomings and irregularities, to produce properly audited financial statements since 2009.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe for coming to the defence of international adviser, Lindiwe Zulu, after criticism from her own president and Zimbabwe’s. Somebody had to do it, we’re just surprised it’s him.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe for having such a promising week the Third Umpire is moved to give him a third green light. We knew somebody would warrant this one day, we’re just surprised it’s him.
Rhodes University law clinic director Susan Smailes. The clinic paid the legal fees for the 16 applicants to move Mandela family remains, as some of them were deemed indigent. A little research next time.... .
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies, for seemingly not doing enough due diligence in terms of fallout, or thinking about who he would be likely to offend in cancelling those EU agreements. He knows now….
Communications Minister Yunus Carrim. Just more than a week on the job and he has tabled two pressing amendment bills in the National Assembly and said the SABC will enjoy editorial freedom. It bodes well.
Public Service and Administration Minister Lindiwe Sisulu, for tabling a draft bill to prevent state employees from holding more than a 5% interest in entities that do business with the government.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, who is hitting the campaign trail and has already addressed four rallies in his country — campaigning as if the outcome of the election is not a given. What a card he is!
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi. The federation is calling the National Development Plan "“neoliberal” — like that’s a bad thing! They need to get a dictionary and get with the neoliberal programme.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, for effectively showing Oupa Magashula the door and confirming that the South African Revenue Service remains one of the critical pillars of the country’s fiscal order.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe. Taking a year to pay the catering company that organised the Free State’s centenary celebrations has seen the caterer liquidated. Way to help small-business creation!
NUM general secretary Frans Baleni, for trying to stop Amcu having what the NUM has long enjoyed. Now the union is no longer the biggest, it’s fighting to stop Amcu enjoying what being “biggest” got the NUM.
DA Eastern Cape leader Athol Trollip, for his gushing about meeting Thembu King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo, saying his move to the DA is to be seen as a “beautiful endorsement” of democracy. Pass the bucket.
SABC chairman Ben Ngubane. The SABC is right to refuse to hand footage of a shooting outside a Durban court over to the National Prosecuting Authority, noting it is not its job to provide footage to the courts.
Zambia Information and Communications Technology Authority director-general Margaret Chalwe-Mudenda, for suing three of the country’s cellphone service providers for alleged poor service delivery to customers.
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba. The completion of the much-touted Medupi power station has been delayed for at least six months. So much for his warnings about late delivery not being tolerated.
Statistician-general Pali Lehohla. Stats SA figures showing the construction sector has the lowest margins of any major industry give the lie to claims that collusive activity has allowed it to record super profits.
Former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils, who alleges in the latest edition of his biography that the ANC and SACP have “sold our people down the river”, but remains convinced that the solution is more socialism.
Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula is doing everything in his limited powers to restore order in domestic athletics. Sadly, some in Athletics SA seem hell-bent on squabbling even as the bus goes off the edge of a cliff.
President Jacob Zuma. The National Prosecuting Authority has been leaderless for nine months and in turmoil for six years. Unless he appoints a head soon, one has to assume he’s deliberately keeping it toothless.
Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi. He said it was State Security Minister Siyabonga Cwele who classified the Nkandla report. Cwele says only Nxesi can do that. Let Nxesi’s buck-passing begin.
Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, for declaring 2013 the “Year of Mandela” in that city. It smacks of opportunism and insensitivity — why not an earlier year, when he was well enough to enjoy the honour?
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, for manfully ignoring an obnoxious investor at her first shareholder meeting, who said, “I’m Greek, I’m a dirty old man and you look attractive.” All women and Greeks should be offended.
Wimbledon CEO Richard Lewis, for his double standards: Roger Federer’s orange-soled shoes were banned as they violate the all-white dress code — but two female players both sported bright orange undies.
NUM general secretary Frans Baleni. If it had done its job better it wouldn’t want the Labour Court to reverse a decision about Amcu. Mind you, with Amcu’s insane wage demands, Lonmin might hope the NUM wins.
Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. Despite being sentenced to seven years for paying for sex with a minor, it might takes years of appeals before he actually sees the inside of a jail. How unappealing he is.
President Jacob Zuma, for the jaw-dropping comment that Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga does her job “very well”. Does she have something on him or does he just hate kids and education, if not in that order?
ANC chief whip Stone Sizani, for his tortured logic in claiming the DA can’t relate to the “exploitative conditions facing workers” because DA members walked out when the ANC couldn’t form a quorum to discuss a bill.
Prasa CEO Lucky Montana for creatively using his Premier Classe long-haul railway in a special offer down to the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown — and turning the train into a hotel while there.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga for her verbal attack of the NGO Equal Education, calling it “a group of white adults organising black children with half-truths” — which is racist as well as inaccurate.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, for being so monumentally incompetent at her job that a grade 11 Eastern Cape pupil is, in desperation, taking her to court over the conditions at her school. For shame.
Iranian president-elect Hassan Rohani. He is already saying the right things about making his country’s nuclear programme more transparent and wanting to improve relations with neighbours and the wider world.
UK Prime Minister David Cameron. Saying he “never comments on security” issues in response to reports that the UK spied on our officials in 2009 is as opaque and unhelpful as anything offered by our own government.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames. Signing an agreement with contractors and unions at two new power stations to “ensure consistent and acceptable treatment” of workers is a good start. Let’s hope it ends well too.
Acting national director of public prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba. She wants Glynnis Breytenbach dismissed and has filed papers to that effect, despite the disciplinary hearing ’s ruling. You lost. Move on.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames. Signing an agreement with contractors and unions at two new power stations to “ensure consistent and acceptable treatment” of workers is a good start. Let’s hope it ends well too.
Philanthropic businessman Mark Shuttleworth for taking the government to court about its foreign exchange laws being unconstitutional as well as draconian. As with everything else he does, he’ll probably succeed.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe for an antigraft initiative which has seen 42 people, mostly public servants, named and shamed and an alarming 193 convictions in the justice, crime prevention and security sectors.
ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa for whining about SA’s whining and saying workers are blamed without businesses acknowledging their roles in labour disputes. How quickly he forgets he once walked among them.
Myanmar President Thein Sein. He is to release all prisoners of conscience as part of wide political reforms. His detractors say it is window-dressing for foreign eyes, but let’s give him the benefit of the doubt.
Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi. Despite an April 1 target set last year, there is no sign whatsoever of the South African Health Products Regulatory Agency, which is slowing the approval of drugs and trials in SA.
South African author Lauren Beukes. Her latest novel, The Shining Girls, has already captured much positive international attention and is to be adapted for TV by Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company.
Cape entrepreneur Sizwe Nzima , for making the Forbes Magazine’s 30 Under 30: Africa’s Best Young Entrepreneurs list for his company, Iyeza Express, which delivers chronic medication via bicycle in Khayelitsha.
Tourism Minister Marthinus van Schalkwyk, for continued good results — pretty much the only good results in any sector — with arrivals growing year on year by 5.6% and tourists spending R76.4bn last year.
US actor and activist Danny Glover, for saying he strongly believes in the work South African trade unions are doing to advance workers’ rights. Oh good. As long as they have his approval, things must be going okay.
Bond recalculator Emerald van Zyl. His claim that FNB is a racist bank, into which he dragged the Human Rights Commission, has been declared “totally unfounded”, with FNB entitled to punitive costs.
Finance and Fiscal Commission acting chairman Bongani Khumalo, for urging the government to moderate expenditure on public sector salaries — of which, compared to international norms, there are too many.
Vietnam President Truong Tan Sang. One of his country’s bloggers has been arrested for posting criticism of the communist government, accused of “abusing democratic freedoms”. What democratic freedoms?
National Union of Mineworkers general secretary Frans Baleni. He is now back-pedalling, after his ludicrous pay increase demands last week, to prevent a crisis in investor sentiment. Let’s hope it’s not too little too late.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe. Castigating and calling “sinister” all opposition parties for not reading the 30-page Guptagate report — at the same time as it was released on the internet — is hardly sporting.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe . Suspended chief of state protocol Bruce Koloane says the transport minister was given instructions “by the president to assist the Gupta family” — so which is it, Mr Radebe?
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson. Experts say her amendment to the Marine Living Resources Act is riddled with omissions, inconsistencies and the like. Same as usual then.
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.
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Remgro CEO Johann Rupert. He is never a man to mince his words, so when he says red tape and corruption are hampering business in SA, the government should sit up and take note.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. His latest innovation is to have drones deliver packages within 30 minutes of the package being ordered. The trick is figuring out whether the drone is delivering a package or a missile.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson, for trying to cast herself as a victim of a “smear campaign” after a damning report into her ministry.
SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande, for his attack on Public Protector Thuli Madonsela and calling for her power to be curbed while remaining silent on the R208m spent on Nkandla.
Reserve Bank deputy governor Lesetja Kganyago has injected some sanity into worries about the US Federal Reserve’s planned tapering of easy money, saying it is not all bad news for SA.
Rugby team the Blue Bulls. First it was the pink rugby shirts, now it is camouflage. Really guys, just stick to rugby and not the catwalks. Vodacom must be very pleased to have its logo on the front.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane after reports that the Gauteng government has spent R14m in “repairs” at her official residence in Bryanston, including a whopping R570,000 to fix the pool.
National Union of Metalworkers of SA president Cedric Gina. He is the latest victim in the fallout following the suspension of Cosatu secretary-general Zwelinzima Vavi.
North West Premier Thandi Modise for failing to explain what has happened to R300m in funds meant for poor and disadvantaged communities. It surely can’t be that hard to show us a bank statement.
Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel. At just 26 years of age, Mr Vettel is on his way to becoming one of the world’s greatest racing drivers as he breaks one record after another.
You’d think Sanral CEO Nazir Alli had enough on his plate without picking a fight with business too. Perhaps if government drove the economy a little less recklessly, business wouldn’t experience its alleged “road rage”?
SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande, for his unsubstantiated allegations about “dirty money” fuelling Cosatu’s difficulties. When the unions commented on the ANC succession issue they were told to butt out.
Growthpoint CEO Norbert Sasse for his R6.6bn acquisition of the Tiber property portfolio. Growthpoint is now by far the largest property group in SA, with 1.5-million square metres of office space.
Cotton On Group CEO Robert Kenny. For a long time we have heard about South African retailers heading Down Under. Now the Australians are coming to SA, with Cotton On planning to have 500 stores in SA.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa. Instead of worrying about the public protector’s report on Nkandla, focus on the fact that 600 police stations around the country are short-staffed.
Gift of the Givers Foundation founder Dr Imtiaz Sooliman. The aid agency has denoted R2m to assist the Philippine victims of Typhoon Haiyan and has sent a team of doctors to the country.
Coronation Fund Managers CEO Anton Pillay. Not only is the company the best-performing share on the JSE over the past five years, but it has doubled its dividend payout for the year.
Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini, for defending teachers who joined a protest march in Durban, leaving schools unattended during exams, on the grounds that grade 12 exams were not affected.
Mpumalanga MEC for public works, roads and transport Dikeledi Mahlangu. How many more people need to lose their lives on the Moloto Road before they finally decide to fix this death trap?
Orlando Pirates coach Roger de Sa. He carried the nation’s hopes to secure a second Caf Champions League trophy, but in the end the Egyptian Al Ahly team were too good for his charges.
Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa for attempting to stop the publication of the public protector’s report on Nkandla, and his defence of the apartheid-era National Key Points Act.
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba for not allowing SAA CEO Monwabisi Kalawe to close the unprofitable Beijing route. Mr Gigaba needs to stop interfering in the running of SAA.
Energy Minister Ben Martins for approving another 17 clean-energy projects worth R33bn and showing that the government can work efficiently if it has the right processes in place.
CEO of the Passenger Rail Agency of SA Lucky Montana for allowing hundreds of buses worth R1.4bn to gather dust as the agency had not secured permits to operate them as public transport.
ANC chief whip Stone Sizani, for entertaining moves to allow Mbulelo Goniwe back into Parliament after he was expelled for sexual harassment. It makes a mockery of his initial expulsion.
Old Mutual’s gold fund portfolio manager Mike Schroder, for his colourful condemnation of executive salaries in the mining industry, pointing out they form a big part of the sector’s economic woes.
Correctional Services Minister Sibusiso Ndebele. There has been a rise of more than 40% in prison rapes and sexual assaults in the past year. Perhaps just the levels of reporting have increased, but that’s just as bad.
Telkom CFO Jacques Schindehütte. Being suspended a month before the company publishes its interim results, for whatever reason, is not something you want on a resumé. There is no way to spin this one.
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, for trimming perks such as costs of official cars and the oft-abused credit cards for Cabinet ministers and officials. If you behave like children, you will get privileges revoked like children.
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Russia has replaced piracy charges with hooliganism for Greenpeace activists and two journalists. Greenpeace says it’s still an overreaction — but a reaction is what it wanted.
Police commissioner Riah Phiyega. The security clearance and qualifications discrepancies around her hiring acting crime intelligence head Maj-Gen Chris Ngcobo are yet more incompetent egg on her face.
KwaZulu-Natal economic development and tourism MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu. The province is allowing liquor sales on a Sunday and creating call centres for liquor outlets to help them understand the new sales rules.
President Jacob Zuma, for the unfortunate comment, about e-tolls, “We can’t think like Africans in Africa. It’s not some national road in Malawi.” Proving SA is not in and of itself part of Africa and insulting his neighbours.
SABC acting chief operating officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng, for axing The Big Debate, which “(holds) our leaders to account”, citing “editorial oversight”. So axing actual news to make way for “good news” has begun.
North West ANC chairman Supra Mahumapelo, for not attending a briefing at which he was expected to clear his name after reportedly blowing nearly R42,000 at Sun City.
US President Barack Obama, for not backing down on his demands and so letting Tea Party Republicans and the GOP hold the country to ransom. An agreement has been made and the US is open for business again.
Chancellor of VUT Pansy Tlakula, for producing sensible students who say, of Julius Malema, things like “He talks and talks but doesn’t make any point” and “An empty tin that makes a lot of noise is just useless”.
ANC Western Cape chairman Marius Fransman, for the anti-Semitic statement that 98% of property owners are in “the white community” and, in particular, “the Jewish community”. Ben Turok lodged a formal complaint.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, for joking that he should have won the Nobel Peace Prize after it went to the weapons watchdog destroying his regime’s chemical arsenal; 1,400 deaths later, this is not remotely funny.
New NPA head Mxolisi Nxasana. With the ink barely dry on his contract, the first thing he does is appeal against last week’s reinstatement of charges against Richard Mdluli. Let the legal games begin again.
Amcu president Joseph Mathunjwa, for threatening action in sectors other than mining as a pre-emptive strike — a preventative measure just in case businesses are considering retrenchments. It’s called union logic.
Infinity Media Networks CEO Nazeem Howa. The denials about employing people illegally at ANN7 news channel were disingenuous; home affairs is sending four foreigners out of SA for not having work permits.
SANDF’s Lt-Col Christine Anderson. Finally, all has been revealed. She has confirmed the mysterious“Number One” in the Guptagate documents is (insert drum roll) Jacob Zuma! Such cryptic nuance! Who would have guessed?
Constitutional Court judges Bess Nkabinde and Chris Jafta, for distancing themselves, without so much as an explanation, from the complaint made by the Constitutional Court against Judge John Hlophe.
Inkatha Freedom Party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi, for continuing to speak his mind about the government’s actions robustly and regardless of the fact that, by now, there is probably no one listening to him.
Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies. His department’s document on intellectual property has been declared incomprehensible and displaying “an alarming lack of understanding” by Stellenbosch University.
Auditor-general Terence Nombembe. His eagle eye has highlighted the level of chaos to which SA Express’s financial management has been reduced, being unable even to confirm that its stated profit is legitimate.
Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga. A new survey has revealed that corruption is rampant in SA’s schools, mostly by teachers who are often responsible for selling exam papers to pupils. For shame.
DA shadow minister of water and environmental affairs Marti Wenger. The attack on Edna Molewa’s action to curb rhino poaching has been denounced by international experts who say it’s pure politicking.
Aquarius Platinum CEO Jean Nel, for converting 70% of his salary to shares for the next three years to“better align management remuneration and shareholder returns” and to “reduce corporate costs”. A bold move.
Billionaire Patrice Motsepe, for pledging R200m from his foundation for youth education and youth business development during a speech at the Tshwane University of Technology. He’s our own Bill Gates.
Acting director of public prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba. The auditor-general is not impressed that the NPA has achieved less than half its targets — but Jiba is “proud” that performance has improved. Everything’s relative.
Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane. Despite introducing performance agreements, overall management performance of government departments has declined. What a waste of time.
Statistician-general Pali Lehohla. Strokes and heart attacks kill more white South Africans than black because they are not “happy”, he says. As a statistician, he really should know not to conflate causality and correlation.
President Jacob Zuma, for praising Mexico’s “patriotic reporting” and for noting that SA’s media make him want to leave the country sometimes, which proves the media must be doing something right.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane, for braying about her performance, despite such appalling service delivery, and boasting she will turn any given post “into gold”. Taxpayers might prefer actual results.
Proteas opening batsman Hashim Amla, for getting four awards from Cricket SA, among them Cricketer of the Year — which he has won before — Sunfoil Test Cricketer of the Year and SA Fans’ Cricketer of the Year.
Gun Free SA chairman Alan Storey, for being up in arms about ads in newspapers and shop windows for guns with payment plans. People are entitled to advertise their wares legally — until Aaron Motsoaledi bans it.
President Jacob Zuma. Mauritius has overtaken SA as the most competitive sub-Saharan country due to the usual — labour discord and over-regulation, poor education, and so on. This has to land at his door.
Banking Association MD Cas Coovadia, for confirming the banking industry is firmly behind the National Development Plan and ready to start playing a “leading role” in its implementation in pertinent areas of banking.
Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile, for noting that South African arts, culture and heritage are important aspects of the country’s economy and could be “the new gold”, something others have been saying for years.
National police commissioner Riah Phiyega, for appointing a Gauteng police commissioner without a background check (he has criminal charges pending) and then blaming him for not telling her about them!
Saxonwold ANC branch secretary Tebogo Khaas, for withdrawing his complaint against the Guptas, reportedly to avoid further embarrassment and division in the ANC ahead of the election. Was his arm bent to do this?
Chairman of KwaZulu-Natal’s Subsistence Fishermen Forum Desmond de Sa. His petitioning has paid off; Transnet has lifted its ban and now 500 fishermen are legally permitted to fish at selected Durban piers.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu, for this: “Investors must realise they have a responsibility to the country and cannot work to a bottom line that has no heart or soul”. And they must believe in unicorns.
Public Protector Thuli Madonsela for highlighting a sharp increase in corruption and poor service delivery in the public service with more cases of MECs breaching the executive ethics code. Who is listening to her?
Transnet National Ports Authority CEO Tau Morwe, for his strategically sensible and proactive regional approach to attracting more global trade while still ensuring SA’s own port-capacity requirements are met.
Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini, for her non-participatory, rough-handed and totalitarian approach to a total ban on alcohol advertising and practically a blackout of all alcohol branding.
Tax professor Matthew Lester, for thinking himself and his mansion by the sea above the law and neighbours’ rights, continuing to build it in defiance of six court orders to get building approval. It is to be demolished.
Aveng CE Roger Jardine, who has resigned under pressure in the wake of the construction sector collusion scandal. How ironic that the shenanigans took place before he was even appointed to the position.
ANC deputy chief whip Eunice Dlakude, whose rush to comfort the disgraced Dina Pule after the latter’s teary non-apology to Parliament raises a few questions over the “whip” part of her job description.
Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova may be easy on the eye and a sweetie in person. But insisting the US Open call her “Sugarpova” for the duration of the event is taking product endorsement too far.
Former Egyptian despot Hosni Mubarak, ousted during the 2011 uprising, could be a free man soon after corruption charges were dropped. Could this be related to the fact that his military pals are back in charge?
The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union president Joseph Mathunjwa, for sealing a deal with Lonmin as the majority union with all the rights that go with it. You snooze you lose, as the NUM did.
Former Italian president Silvio Berlusconi. He believes, as his lawyers do, that he could be getting a pardon for his fraud conviction any day now so he can resume his political career. Sadly, he might be right.
Auditor-General Terence Nombembe, for, as ever, sounding the drum about the dire state of financial competence in SA’s municipalities, with a ridiculous nine of 278 having clean audits. Why is nobody listening?
Western Cape police commissioner Gen Arno Lamoer. Independent Police Investigative Directorate statistics show the Western Cape has the highest incidence of police rape. Helen Zille will not be amused.
Sterling-Rand co-founder Chris Schoeman. We’re not completely sure, but forming a company to fund civil litigation for a share of the settlement sounds rather smart. It’s not illegal, we’re still pondering the ethics….
Mango Airlines CEO Nico Bezuidenhout. Firing 24 cabin crew for defrauding the airline by pocketing takings from its in-flight catering service sets an excellent example and is a caveat for other employees.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe, for announcing he is reinstating the specialist sexual offences courts to try crimes against women and children. With the highest sexual-crime rate in the world, it is desperately needed.
South African yachtsman Graham Anley, for rescuing his Jack Russell terrier before his wife when their yacht was wrecked off the Transkei coast. You just know if he had left the dog, the public would vilify him forever.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Buying The Washington Post proves business legitimacy and cachet still obtains in print, despite online’s rapid growth. As one observer put it: “The iceberg just saved the Titanic”.
President Jacob Zuma. His fulsome praise and “profound congratulations” to Robert Mugabe’s entirely expected election win, as the rest of the world voices its very real concerns, makes SA look rather stupid.
SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande, for his puerile and incendiary comments about Tlokwe, saying the ANC needs to claim “this municipality from the party (DA) of the baases and madams”.
Western Cape education MEC Donald Grant has egg on his face for his bid to close 17 schools in the province, which was kicked out with costs and the court saying his reasons were “largely inadequate” and“irrational”.
President Jacob Zuma. His using air force helicopters to commute between Durban and his Nkandla residence is straining the SAAF budgets; to wit, no search and rescue is being done on the KwaZulu-Natal coast.
Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane. She wants four construction firms convicted of collusion to “atone” by contributing to the building of a children’s hospital. And so moral bribery becomes business leverage.
Pope Francis. On a tour of South America, which proved him more popular than the Beatles, he said, “If someone is gay and looking for the Lord, who am I to judge him?”, thus leaping into the 18th century.
Zimbabwean Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, for saying he will announce unofficial election results if the electoral commission fails to release them promptly. A silly threat that Robert Mugabe called him on.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu, for saying he will never worship a homophobic God and comparing the fight against homophobia with the fight against apartheid. He’s still the most sensible and kick-ass Arch there is.
Murder accused Shrien Dewani. He is to appeal against his extradition to SA, which could take another six months, on the grounds of ill health. However ill he is, he’s still in considerably better shape than his late wife.
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe. Where to start? Zimbabweans are running our economy; most of our hotel workers are Zimbabweans; gay people should be beheaded — the barking mad list goes on….
Kumba Iron Ore CEO Norman Mbazima. At a time when the mining sector is battling to stay above water, news that Kumba is looking at expanding within SA and into the rest of Africa is most welcome.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe for noting that SA cannot afford to be left behind and setting up a task team to fast-track its growth and investment. Somebody had to do it, we’re just surprised it’s him.
President Jacob Zuma, for not sticking up for his own facilitation team, specifically Lindiwe Zulu, when she spoke out about Robert Mugabe. It’s shameful that he kowtows to Mugabe but hangs his own out to dry.
UK cyclist Chris Froome, for winning the Tour de France, the second Brit to do so, helping the UK enjoy a new sense of sporting prowess — and he won without doping, he says, which makes it extra impressive.
Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande. While the Setas are patently not working, suggesting that government departments as well as the private sector pay the national skills levy at least levels the paying field .
Russian President Vladimir Putin, for pointing out the US trapped Edward Snowden in Russia, not him. Once they knew he was en route to Havana, the US blocked his movements, leaving him stuck in Moscow.
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba, for the caveat that China investing in African infrastructure must not come at the expense of local development — bringing in their own workers won’t help SA’s job-creation goal.
DA leader Helen Zille. The party is hailing members of dubious provenance, such as AbaThembu King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo, with the same kind of obsequious electioneering it decries in the ANC.
Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe for, as ever, calling it right when he says the ANC needs to look to the future; relying on past glories, of which younger voters are barely even aware, will not keep it winning elections.
ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte, for the nonsensical and incendiary comment that “apartheid has seeped back, very quietly and comfortably” into the Western Cape, the province the ANC covets so much.
Former deputy president Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, for reportedly being touted to head the new gender equality body, United Nations Women, according to diplomats. Congratulations, it’s a good call.
Whistle-blower Edward Snowden, for vacillating about going into exile in Venezuela. Has he not seen its women? Surely exile in a country that produces more Miss Worlds per capita than any other is an easy decision.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang. Chinese police reportedly opened fire “without warning” on an unarmed group of Tibetan monks celebrating the Dalai Lama’s birthday. At least two were shot in the head.
Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution chairman Sipho Pityana. Fed up with the leaderless NPA, they are taking court action to force Jacob Zuma to find a full-time candidate for the post.
Tennis player Andy Murray, for not buckling under the pressure of the British public desperate for a Wimbledon winner after 77 years; for not crying when he won; and especially for making Ivan Lendl smile.
Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, for the eminently reasonable suggestion, made on radio, that the “top secret” Nkandla report should be made public, noting there’s no reason for it to be kept secret.
Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi, the country’s first democratically elected civilian leader, is out of a job barely a year after being sworn in. He got a lot wrong, but military intervention does not augur well.
Tlokwe mayor Maphetle Maphetle, who has been voted out of office by a majority of councillors — including those representing his own party — for a second time, after failing to account for missing funds.
Madiba’s grandson, Mandla Mandela. His unilateral decision to exhume relatives’ remains just goes to show that wisdom, humility, humanity and a love for democracy are not genetically inherited traits.
US President Barack Obama. The US is giving an extra $10m for safe medical male circumcision, which should further decrease HIV transmission and reduce deaths from “traditional” circumcisions.
Nelson Mandela’s wife Graca Machel, for continuing to be the class act she always has been by not speaking publicly or to the media about Madiba, unlike the rest of his family and an ex-wife, who are squabbling loudly.
Dean of Westminster Abbey Rev John Hall. Nelson Mandela may become the first non-Briton to be honoured with a memorial service at the abbey, which is in talks with the South African High Commission.
Expelled ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema. One in four youths would vote for his party, according to a nationwide survey. A clearer sign of the increasing desperation of SA’s youth would be harder to find.
Amcu president Joseph Mathunjwa. Far from being a viable alternative to the NUM, asking for all wages in the gold mining sector to be doubled gives Amcu no credibility and proves how out of touch with reality it is.
ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe. His paranoia about the media had him delay removing an official from a post so it didn’t look like he was responding to the media — thus responding to the media.
Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, for his hard work on the draft Framework Agreement for a Sustainable Mining Industry, which the NUM is already saying should prevent any wildcat strikes.
National Assembly Speaker Max Sisulu, for the inspired move of tagging often absent MPs to track their movements. It shows just how desperate Parliament has become. Perhaps a cattle prod would help in the short term?
Golfer Ernie Els, for topping the leader board in all four rounds to win the BMW International — the oldest player to do so, which proves that despite being a ripe old 43, he’s good for a few birdies yet.
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe. His scrambling to push back his election date by two weeks is disingenuous — it is too little, too late, as he knows, but makes him look like he’s being accommodating.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames, for getting top honours at the state-owned enterprises governance awards and being ranked as the most transparent company in terms of the King 3 codes and integrated reporting.
Convicted drug dealer Glenn Agliotti, for using radio to milk his authorised biography for all it’s worth, insisting he is as clean as the driven snow and it was all a conspiracy; he should know it’s time to lie low.
DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko, for saying of Jacob Zuma that if he wants respect without earning it, he has chosen the wrong job, and he “seems to aspire to be a monarch”. Never truer words spoken in jest.
Icasa chairman Stephen Mncube. Threatening foreign journalists outside Madiba’s hospital about some of their “unlicensed” equipment is unreasonable and disingenuous in the era of 24/7 international news.
Acting national director of public prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba. She wants Glynnis Breytenbach dismissed and has filed papers to that effect, despite the disciplinary hearing ’s ruling. You lost. Move on.
Icasa chairman Stephen Mncube. Threatening foreign journalists outside Madiba’s hospital about some of their “unlicensed” equipment is unreasonable and disingenuous in the era of 24/7 international news.
Transnet CEO Brian Molefe. This time around, his bond issue has attracted an impressive R3.3bn, proving the company right about its earlier failure not being due to negative perceptions about the group or the country.
President Jacob Zuma. The ANC welcomed and adopted the National Development Plan with alacrity and smiles all around — now they are dumping entire chapters so, clearly, they didn’t read it properly.
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu for rushing to excise a problematic clause in the amended mining laws to the delight of all. She has proved she can get things done quickly when needed, so we will expect it again
Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu and Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa. Their bickering about the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Amendment Bill isn’t making it any clearer.
Deputy Public Works Minister Jeremy Cronin, for voicing his anxiety about the “clearly outrageous cost” of the Nkandla upgrade, an attitude unlikely to please his boss, who has classified most of the Nkandla report.
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan. Declaring, as anti government protests escalate, that the protesters are “arm in arm with terrorism” sounds worryingly like something Syria’s Bashar al-Assad would say.
Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba. The revelation that legal action prevented Eskom from penalising Hitachi for its faulty welding at Medupi vindicates his insistence that the contractor face consequences.
Actor Michael Douglas, for saying his throat cancer was caused by the human papillomavirus, contracted through too much cunnilingus. Even if true, this is too much information; he should keep his mouth shut.
Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa, for deciding to re-erect a fence between the Kruger National Park and Mozambique to curb rhino poaching in SA, as Mozambique is just not coming to the party.
Acting National Prosecuting Authority head Nomgcobo Jiba, for not respecting the exoneration of Glynnis Breytenbach and threatening to take the case to court for review. You lost; get over it and move on.
Central University of Technology, Free State’s Prof Herman Vermaak, for the Solar Flower prototype in which students can charge electronic devices via solar-powered USB ports. Innovation must be rewarded.
Exonerated deputy director of public prosecutions Glynnis Breytenbach, who, despite her suspension and shoddy treatment, is still prepared to pursue charges against Richard Mdluli, making her a brave woman.
ANC treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize, for pointing out the obvious — that the mining industry is vital to creating jobs and the National Development Plan and everyone needs to get behind it, which won’t please the unions.
Cosatu Western Cape secretary Tony Ehrenreich, for saying the DA is giving US President Barack Obama the freedom of Cape Town to boost the city’s credibility — but thanks to the DA, it doesn’t need boosting.
Justice Minister Jeff Radebe. Noting that no minister, nor the president, knew of the landing by the Guptas at the Waterkloof base does not in any way mitigate in their favour. They should have known.
National Union of Mineworkers general secretary Frans Baleni. His demand for a 344% increase in housing allowances shows that his ludicrous grand standing is a childish attack aimed at Amcu’s ascendance.
President Jacob Zuma. His trying to sell SA as a good investment opportunity to Canadians, “especially” in mining, as the sector is faced with more violence and unrealistic demands, is rather embarrassing.
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.