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Thuli Madonsela: The injustice of shady home auctions

Things are getting hot when you get the former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela coming out with her thoughts on shady home repossessions and auctions. It is, as we have argued here for years, a national disgrace. We are pleased that the Portfolio Committee on Finance has been in touch with King Sibiya, Fred Arijs and others who have argued for legal reform in this area. Our prediction is this will become a central issue in the upcoming presidential elections. Now wouldn't that be great, along with jail time for the criminal bankers and their lawyers responsible for this outrage?

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Satire is booming in post-Mugabe Zimbabwe

On a stage in a park in Harare, Zimbabwe’s capital, Carl Joshua Ncube, perhaps the country’s most famous comedian, is coaching a novice. Imitating her act, in which she pretends to deliver a baby, he mimes a doctor slapping its bottom. “People love to hear about bottoms,” he tells her. An hour or so later, he introduces her — and three other wannabe female comics, one of whom is his wife—to a big audience. “In Zimbabwe we only have one female comedian,” he says, mock-solemnly. “We need some competition for Grace!” Feigning anxiety, he adds: “Although we know what happens when people try to introduce their wives to the profession!”

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Tony Webbstock: a warrior has left us

Our dear friend Tony Webbstock passed away last Wednesday morning, the result of complications from a decades-long battle with diabetes and – one has to say – inadequate medicine back in the day when diabetes wasn’t as well understood as it is today. Tony was a warrior with a Christian heart, a genius lawyer who put himself at the service of the people against the banks.

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The ugly face of modern banking

A 72 year old man gets a 30 year loan which he cannot repay, so he is forced to sell his house. Bank staff are there to flog you stuff you don't want or need. They hate their jobs, but are given stiff sales target to meet so the bosses can get year-end bonuses that run into the millions. When you default, the bank comes after everything you have. Staff are prevented from talking bad about their employers because of "disparagement clauses" in their employment contracts. Even years after they have left the bank. When, customers are asking, will bank executives get time in jail, in this expose in the wake of the Australian Commission of Inquiry into Banking. You could just as easily cut and paste this story for SA. 

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