Category Archives: Social media

Tito promotes new Soweto restaurant, but journalist claims 'stolen VBS money bought it'

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni was happy to promote a new restaurant along Soweto’s famous Vilakazi Street on Monday – until investigative journalist Pauli van Wyk had something to say about it.

In a post on Twitter, Mboweni shared a picture of SUD restaurant along with the caption, “There is a new restaurant on Vilakazi Street. Check it out next time. Kuthi huu!!”

However, van Wyk, who writes for Daily Maverick‘s Scorpio, retweeted Mboweni’s post with a claim that the restaurant was bought with “stolen” money from the collapsed VBS Mutual Bank.

‘I will soon show how’

She wrote, “Millions in stolen #VBS money bought this restaurant. I will soon show how and how much.

“Support it and promote it, minister @tito_mboweni, because our mothers and grandmothers and orphans funded it with pension money robbed from them.”

The restaurant’s website lists Tsholo Malema, said to be Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema’s cousin, as its manager.

A Sunday Times report in November last year claimed Santaclara Trading, a company reportedly registered in another Malema cousin Jimmy Matlebyane’s name, channeled funds to SUD restaurant’s bank account.

‘Suspicious payments’

According to the publication, Tsholo Malema denied knowledge of SUD receiving funds from Santaclara.

The report further claimed Santaclara received about R4 million in “suspicious” payments in just seven months and channeled the funds to different entities.

The payments reportedly came from companies that had allegedly “looted” from VBS, companies that had done business with the Limpopo provincial government, and EFF’s lawyers, the report claimed.

On Tuesday, Malema, who had earlier “liked” Mboweni’s tweet, retweeted two posts by parody account @AdvoBarryRoux that criticised van Wyk’s latest claim.

One of the tweets said, “Pauli van Wyk’s role as a so called journalist is just to destruct [sic] people from focusing on Pravin Gordhan by coming with stories of money channel of VBS and disappear again.”

The second one stated, “So every time Pravin Gordhan is roughly handled by the EFF, Pauli van Wyk goes to the propaganda headquarters preparing more graphs linking Julius Malema and VBS.”

'Frustrated' Mboweni appeals for economic reforms: 'You were warned'

A seemingly frustrated Finance Minister Tito Mboweni has appealed for the implementation of “deep structural economic reforms” to avert a downgrade of South Africa to junk status.

In a series of tweets late on Thursday night, Mboweni appeared to respond to news that the World Bank had cut back on its forecast for South Africa’s 2020 economic growth to just 09.%.

He wrote, “If you cannot effect deep structural economic reforms, then game over! Stay as you are and you are downgraded to junk status!! The consequences are dire. Your choice. Yep!! Askies!!”

‘Reform inertia is frustrating’

In several other tweets, Mboweni added, “You were warned and chose to ignore the wise warnings!! Good luck!!

“Structural Economic Reforms inertia is frustrating. Let’s get on with it. Movement!! Many steps at a time!!

“What are critical Economic Strategic Reforms? Read the National Treasury now Government Document! Let us move forward! Many steps at the same time!! Movement!! No time for procrastinating!!”

Mboweni released the National Treasury’s proposed economic recovery strategy paper in August 2019 and invited public comment.

Strong opposition

The plan aims at creating 1 million jobs and rebooting the economy to achieve growth rates of 2-3% in the immediate future.

It proposes other measures such as implementing a flexible industrial policy and promoting export competition.

However, it triggered strong opposition from the African National Congress (ANC) alliance partners Cosatu and the South African Communist Party (SACP), who slammed it as “right wing.”

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) also dismissed it as a “declaration of war on the working class,” although the Democratic Alliance (DA) broadly welcomed the plan.

The ANC alliance reportedly shelved the plan at its recent meeting late last year and resolved to come up with a “unifying” strategy.

Moody’s is the only ratings agency that still places South Africa above investment grade, albeit with a negative outlook.

The World Bank’s latest assessment, which cited ongoing load shedding as the biggest reason for its lower forecast, could lead to a downgrade from Moody’s.

Fact check: Zimbabwe's deputy defence minister did NOT threaten US over Iran

On Wednesday, a Twitter account purporting to be Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation’s (ZBC) tweeted a claim that raised many eyebrows.

The tweet said, “Breaking News. Deputy Minister of Defence Cde Victor Matemadanda has warned the US that if they do not retreat from Iran, Zimbabwe may be forced to intervene.”

The account, @zbcnewsonline_, accompanied the tweet with a picture of Matemadanda. The tweet had racked up more than 1,300 likes, 600 retweets, and close to 1,000 replies by Thursday evening.

Fake and/or parody account

A number of influential figures on Twitter, including journalist Clement Manyathela and popular personality Christo Thurston, retweeted the tweet.

However, a closer look at the account’s handle reveals that it is a fake and/or parody account and not the ZBC News Online‘s official Twitter handle, which is @ZBCNewsonline.

A screenshot of the tweet from the fake/parody Twitter account purporting to be ZBC News Online’s.

The fake account was started in December 2019. Furthermore, it only has 543 followers and 72 tweets so far.

The official ZBC News Online account has been in existence since 2012 and has more than 275,000 followers. By Thursday evening, it had not tweeted anything about Matemadanda.

Matemadanda denies issuing ultimatum

According to Zimbabwean publication bulawayo24.com, Matemadanda denied on Thursday ever issuing an ultimatum to the United States (US).

In a statement, he said, “Cde Victor Matemadanda dismissed this as fake news. [He] asks the social media handlers to refrain from disseminating manipulative false information about the activities in the Middle East.

“Zimbabwe has not issued any official statement. In any case, such information is issued by the ministry of information or by the President himself.”

Earlier this week, another tweet circulated on social media purporting to emanate from US President Donald Trump’s Twitter account.

It claimed, “Just spoke to Cyril. South Africans will be conscripted if we need them. Let’s stop Iran!”

Head of Digital Communications in Ramaphosa’s office, Athi Geleba, tweeted that it was “fake news.”

Andile Mngxitama defends Zuma's use of 'WMC-owned' Capitec Bank

Black First Land First (BLF) leader Andile Mngxitama has defended former President Jacob Zuma after pictures emerged on social media showing him at a Capitec Bank branch.

Twitter user @TotoGeza shared the images on Wednesday showing Zuma posing with Dudu Myeni, the chairperson of the Jacob Zuma Foundation, and a Capitec Bank consultant.

It’s unclear when and at which branch the photos were taken, and whether Zuma was opening an account or not.

‘Owned by white monopoly capital’

Some social media users expressed surprise that Zuma was apparently using a bank owned by “white monopoly capital (WMC).”

This is because Zuma is known as an ardent proponent of “radical economic transformation” (RET), which sees “WMC” as its main “enemy.”

However, in an article on his blog Black Opinion on Wednesday, Mngxitama dismissed Zuma’s critics as “loud ignorant trolls.”

He wrote, “The people ridiculing Zuma don’t know that actually, the entire banking system in South Africa is controlled by WMC.”

‘Owners of the economy’

Mngxitama added, “When we say WMC, we are talking about the owners of the economy of South Africa – from toothpaste to sunlight soap.

“In fact, people don’t know that even VBS Mutual Bank had no license. It was underwritten by ABSA.

“So those who say that Zuma must not open a Capitec account because it’s a WMC bank, do so because they don’t know that the bread and eggs they eat every morning is produced by WMC.”

The BLF leader claimed Zuma was “removed” as President in February 2018 because he had sought to establish a “black bank” and to transform the mineral and energy sectors.

He concluded, “So please, before you troll Zuma for opening a Capitec account, know what WMC is.

“And remember how some of your leaders removed him from office for fighting to end the evil WMC stranglehold around our necks.”

Ntsiki Mazwai: If Malema was black-conscious, he wouldn't wear Gucci

Poet and musical artist Ntsiki Mazwai has taken a swipe at Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema, accusing him of not being “black-conscious.”

In a video on Twitter on Friday, Mazwai said Malema wouldn’t wear Gucci and Louis Vuitton clothes if he was an adherent of the Black Consciousness movement associated with the late anti-apartheid leader Steve Biko.

She said, “Julius Malema is not woke. He’s not black-conscious. He is definitely a bully, he’s a man who wields a lot of power, and he’s thriving in our communities because he’s the type of man that Christianity has created.”

‘Not what Biko stood for’

Mazwai said if the EFF leader was black conscious, his party wouldn’t have expelled former leaders such as Andile Mngxitama, who is now leader of the Black First Land First movement.

She added, “He wouldn’t be adorned in Gucci and Louis Vuitton because that’s not what Black Consciousness is, it’s not what Biko stood for, it’s not what [Pan-Africanist Congress leader Robert) Sobukwe stood for.

“So you can stand up for your leader as a leader, but when I say I’m more black-conscious than Julius Malema, you can’t argue that.

“Julius Malema is more about securing the bag. He’s not about liberating anybody else. If he was, he would be investing in things that uplift the Black community, [but] he’s not. He’s investing in German cars, he’s investing in living in expensive houses and wearing expensive clothes.”

On Julius Malema’s wife Mantwa

Mazwai also claimed Malema’s wife, Mantwa Matlala-Malema, isn’t the “black-consciousness” model woman.

She said, “If he was black-conscious, you would even see the type of woman he has. He would have a very strong-willed, natural woman next to him.

“And I’m not dissing his wife or anything; I think she’s a lovely lady, but I don’t think that she’s the Black Consciousness model.”

Malema has not yet reacted to Mazwai’s broadside. However, the two have had ru-ins on social media in the past.

In 2017, Malema hit back at Mazwai’s similar claims. He tweeted, “I don’t need an endorsement of any failed poet to succeed. Politics is my game and I know it. At least I’m good at what I’m doing unlike you.”

In another tweet, he added, “Tweeting about Juju all the time and not about your work or profession, as if Julius is your job description. I don’t need you or [your] friends.”

'She married madness:' Malema's tribute to Mantwa on their 5th anniversary

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has paid a heartwarming tribute to his wife Mantwa Matlala-Malema on their fifth wedding anniversary.

Writing on Instagram and Twitter on Friday, Malema said his wife is “perfect and married madness.”

He wrote, “Today is officially 5 years and still going strong. The beauty of making your girlfriend a wife, love you, Mama of the boys. She’s perfect and married madness; we thank you for being brave, my friend.”

Private wedding

The couple got married at a two-day private ceremony on 27 December, 2014 in Seshego, Limpopo, where they both hail from.

Malema and Matlala-Malema have two sons together, Munzhedzi and Kopano, as well as Ratanang, an older son from Malema’s previous relationship.

Although Matlala-Malema appears not to have a public social media profile, his fiery politician husband is not shy to share their photos on social media.

The two attended celebrity couple Somizi Mhlongo and Mohale Motaung’s traditional wedding in September and Malema shared the pictures on Instagram.

‘Inform Stratcom’

Besides the newly weds, they posed for photos with several other celebrities such as entertainer Khanyi Mbau and star athlete Caster Semenya.

Also in September, Malema poked fun at sections of the media by posting photos of himself and his wife at a wedding.

He accompanied them with the caption, “The Parents of the boys; playing with other kids. You can inform #Stratcom to come and download. Congratulations #PotlakiWedsTumi.”

The EFF leader has repeatedly dismissed some media houses and journalists as “Stratcom.”

It’s a reference to the infamous apartheid’s “strategic communications” propaganda machinery that targeted certain anti-apartheid leaders such as the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

In December 2018, he expressed concern for Matlala-Malema’s safety after author Jacques Pauw tweeted the address of the house she was renting from cigarette kingpin Adriano Mazzotti.

'I don't hate Zuma' – Malema in late-night Q&A with Instagram followers

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has said he does not hate former President Jacob Zuma.

Malema made the comment in a late-night question-and-answer session with his followers via Instagram stories on Sunday.

When a follower asked him why he “hates” former President Jacob Zuma, he replied, “I don’t hate Zuma even though he did horrible things to me after I supported him.”

Winnie Mandela ‘favourite African leader’

Malema also touted the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela as his “favourite African leader of all time.”

One follower asked him, “When are we removing Cyril?” The EFF leader replied, “It’s in your hands guys. Don’t abdicate your responsibility.”

Another one asked him when he would return to the ANC and he replied, “Not even in my next life.”

“How did you accumulate wealth at your age? You know we watch the news,” a follower asked. Malema responded, “Don’t believe everything.”

Relationship with Floyd Shivambu

Malema also compared his relationship with his deputy Floyd Shivambu with that of former African National Congress (ANC) leaders OR Tambo and Nelson Mandela.

A fan asked him to describe the relationship and why “it is so strong.” Malema simply replied, “OR Tambo and Nelson Mandela.”

He said he would have been a “commercial farmer of note” had he not been in politics and that his aspiration in life is to “inspire confidence in an African child.”

The EFF leader said his plans for 2020 are to grow the EFF while those for the new decade are to pursue African unity.

The wide-ranging question-and-answer session also ventured to the less public aspects of Malema’s life.

For instance, he said water is his favourite drink and that he believes in God “through his son Jesus Christ.” He also doesn’t like TV and therefore doesn’t have a favourite TV show.

Malema said the “encouraging words you say to your kids” are “work hard and love school.” He added that he will be spending Christmas at his late grandmother’s house in Seshego, Limpopo.

Gatvol AKA is 'officially done with ANC' after 'nightmare' experience with SAA

Rapper AKA has declared that he’s “officially done” with the African National Congress (ANC) until further notice.

In a series of tweets on Sunday, AKA expressed his frustration after experiencing a delay with a South African Airways (SAA) flight from Zimbabwe.

“Listen!!!! @flysaa is an absolute nightmare!!!! Left Harare at 1pm, just landed in JHB at 18:00 … Total disorganisation!!!!! Total crisis!!!!” he wrote in his first tweet.

‘We need options’

AKA then suggested that state-owned enterprises (SOEs) should be done away with as soon as possible.

He wrote, “We need options!!!!!! State-owned enterprises in 2020?!!!!!?! No ways!!!!!!! Disgusting!!!!!! I am officially done with the ANC until further notice.”

The Fela in Versace hitmaker said the ANC “as it currently exists is done,” adding that “these fat old guys are done.”

He further tweeted, “If the ANC doesn’t embrace young people and put them in positions of power SOON … we are TOTALLY DONE.”

Fikile Mbalula replies

The popular rapper wasn’t finished, “From today onward I distance myself from ALL political parties … I am now officially a free agent.”

AKA’s tweets caught the attention of Transport Minister and ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) member Fikile Mbalula, who came to the ANC’s defence.

He replied, “I hear and share your frustration. We will make time to engage I wouldn’t want us to talk past each other. But I can assure you things will change for [the] better.”

This isn’t the first time a celebrity has expressed political views after experiencing frustration at the hands of SAA.

Earlier this month, rapper Sho Madjozi blamed “mass looting” under former President Jacob Zuma’s administration for an eight-hour SAA flight delay she had experienced.

In response to a fan’s query about what had caused the delay, she replied, “Business rescue on SAA my friend. But if you wanna go deeper, it’s because of mass looting of state funds under JZ [Jacob Zuma].”

'A bully:' Thando Thabethe, DJ Fresh make more claims against eNCA's Kanthan Pillay

Popular radio personalities Thando Thabethe and DJ Fresh have made more claims of mistreatment at the hands of eNCA‘s senior executive Kanthan Pillay.

In a tweet on Wednesday, DJ Fresh wrote, “His becoming hands on at YFM was the reason I jumped ship, and why it was so easy to leave!!! He is not a nice person at all…”

He also replied to a tweet by former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela on Thursday and wrote, “Shall speak for myself … that man has zero emotional and social agility! Narcissistic… A bully…. Arrogant AF! YOU CAN’T TELL HIM [ANYTHING]!!!!”

‘Didn’t get to serve my notice’

Thando Thabethe picked up on DJ Fresh’s tweet and added, “Didn’t get to serve my notice at Y or even do 1 more show after letting them know I got offered a show on 5, got told leave immediately!!! Further got told to leave Club808 immediately.”

The controversy surrounding Pillay was sparked by political reporter Samkele Maseko, who claimed Pillay refused to allow him to serve his 30-day notice period after handing in his resignation on Tuesday.

Maseko also accused Pillay of censorship,”“Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?

“What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves?”

Yet more claims emerge

Sunday Times journalist Qaanitah Hunter also recounted her experience of interacting with Pillay, who is also the founder the Capitalist Party of South Africa, also known as “Purple Cow.”

She tweeted, “Not long ago I was doing an interview and the purple cow was also on. He fat shamed SAA air hostess unprovoked.

“Then when I was talking about challenges facing journalists he said it was “millennial tears” and we know nothing about struggle. A bully.”

Media personality Leslie Kasumba quoted DJ Fresh’s tweet and wrote, “Oh my gosh I co-sign this! He even faked a whole water case against me, lied that it cost the company x amount and it was not the case.

“He is a horrible horrible man! I never had the courage back then but yea what a bad human being!”

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has called for a boycott of the news channel, while the South African National Editors’ Forum (SANEF) has expressed concern at Maseko’s censorship claims.

Both Pillay and eNCA have remained mum on the controversy so far.

Samkele Maseko to eNCA's Kanthan Pillay: 'You threw me out like a dog'

Popular political reporter Samkele Maseko has come out guns blazing on Twitter against Kanthan Pillay, his former boss at eNCA.

In a series of tweets on Wednesday afternoon, Maseko accused Pillay of throwing him out of the eNCA building “like a dog” and “censoring political talk.”

Maseko announced his abrupt departure from eNCA on Tuesday, sparking speculation of a fallout with the management.

‘Disrespect for an African Black Child’

He explained that he had simply left for “greener pastures,” adding that he couldn’t serve notice “as per their [eNCA] decision.”

However, his tweets on Wednesday suggested a far more dramatic exit. He quoted one of Pillay’s tweets several times. The tweet, which Pillay posted on Tuesday, said, “Rats swimming toward a sinking ship. #EarlyXmasGift.”

In his first response to Pillay’s tweet, Maseko wrote, “The disrespect you have for an African Black Child is appalling. You have no sense of appreciation, none whatsoever.

“We are not here to play politics and settle political scores with the EFF like you are doing. Busy censoring political talk and instructing things to [be] taken off air.”

‘Censoring’ of allegations against Gordhan

In subsequent tweets, Maseko added, “Do you want me to speak about how you instructed that @MYANC MP Bongani Bongo be censored by removing all the allegations he made at Minister Pravin Gordhan?

“What happened to a simple journalism principle of two sides to a story? Getting both parties to answer for themselves?

“Do want me to speak about how you threw me out of the @eNCA building like a dog who had stolen something?

“How you came to my desk and said I should pack my [stuff] and follow you to HR? You are heartless and unethical. Denying some[one] a chance to serve a notice period.”

‘Settling political scores’

An apparently incensed Maseko wasn’t done and posted even more tweets, “Listen here and listen good, you may be pulling strings there at @eNCA but you will refer to your family as Rats and not Black African Children.

“Settle your political scores using eNCA but disrespect us for dumping ship led by a failed politician.

“Want to speak about how you canned an SAA story saying a journalist is an imbongi [poet] of the workers, wanting journalists to find faults with workers at all costs whilst protecting bosses?”

Pillay has not yet responded to Maseko’s tweets. He is the founder and a leader of the Capitalist Party of South Africa (ZACP), also known as the Purple Cow.

His appointment to a senior management role at eNCA, which was announced in October, raised eyebrows on social media.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) national spokesperson Dr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi commented at the time that the appointment meant “eNCA is doomed for good.”

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