Citizen. Speak. Amplify.

#UnemployedDoctors: No posts for medical interns in 2018

There are not enough posts in the public health sector available for junior doctors to complete their internships in 2018. The Junior Doctors Association of South Africa (Judasa) started the #unemployeddoctors campaign to raise awareness to their plight. Judasa is a group under the South African Medical Association (Sama) that represents the interests, needs and challenges of junior doctors. To qualify as an independent practitioner in South Africa, medical graduates have to complete an internship and a period of community…

UCT students on writing exams in a tent: “It’s bizarre and not well thought out”

Students at the University of Cape Town (UCT) are writing exams in a tent on the university rugby field amid heavy security presence. The conditions are an attempt to ensure uninterrupted exams, considering the rumblings of Fees Must Fall protests at UCT this year. “UCT is determined to conduct the exams in a safe, quiet and calm atmosphere to support students in doing the best they can,” spokesperson Elijah Moholola said in a statement. The exams began on November 15. The Daily Vox asked UCT students what it’s like to write…

Egypt’s failed Arab Spring revolution: A warning for Zimbabwe

The dramatic military coup in Zimbabwe last week indicates that President Robert Mugabe’s days are numbered. Despite his claims otherwise on national television, there is speculation that he has signed his resignation letter. But as the aftermath of Egypt’s Arab Spring revolution shows, Zimbabweans should temper their relief and jubilation. The Daily Vox explains. What happened with Egypt’s Arab Spring? The Egyptian military supported the people’s call for the removal of the autocratic president Hosni Mubarak. The rumblings…

How Thabo Mbeki helped Robert Mugabe steal an election

A number of Zimbabweans do not want South Africa or the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to intervene in the ongoing crisis. A citizen in Bulawayo started a petition to stop SADC from interfering with the political transition in Zimbabwe on Thursday. The petition has been signed by over 19 000 supporters. It aims to reach 25 000. Former South African president Thabo Mbeki has been heavily criticised for his silence during the violent 2002 and 2008 Zimbabwe elections. Mbeki also mediated before the 2008 election…

How political parties in South Africa reacted to the Zimbabwe crisis

On Tuesday, the Zimbabwean Defence Force (ZDF) moved into Zimbabwean capital Harare, to “target criminals” aligned to President Robert Mugabe. Despite that it seems like the beginnings of a military coup, army officials aren’t calling it that. South Africa’s political parties weigh in on the recent developments in Zimbabwe and the way forward. The Democratic Alliance (DA) party leader Mmusi Maimane issued a statement on Wednesday saying the current instability in Zimbabwe should be a concern for all African countries who…

The Fees Commission’s income contingent loans explained

University students have been protesting for free, decommodified and decolonised education since 2015. In January 2016, President Jacob Zuma in January 2016 commissioned an inquiry into the viability of free education and after an extensive wait, the Fees Commission report was released on November 13. The report does not find free education viable or in the best interests of South Africa’s higher education sector saying, “those who can afford to pay must pay”. As a solution to a transformed and expanded higher education…

Universities are still studying the Fees Commission report

South African universities have welcomed the release of the Heher Commission report but are still deliberating its 750 pages before announcing what this means for the 2018 academic year. Universities had been waiting for the Presidency to release the Fees Commission report since President Jacob Zuma received it in August. Zuma commissioned the report in January 2016 following the initial round of Fees Must Fall protests. The Presidency’s recommendations would guide universities on how to table budgets for next year. The…

Why educating girl children is the key to economic growth in Africa

Educating Africa’s girl children is more urgent than ever as the continent fast approaches a potential stage of social and economic development called a demographic dividend. A demographic dividend happens when the mortality and fertility rates decline and people have fewer children each year, lessening the dependent population. This is according to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Generation 2030 Africa 2.0 report. The report says that by 2030, Africa will reach a point in population growth where it will have…

#FeesCommission report: How TVETs win

Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions are the biggest winners according to the recommendations of the Fees Commission report. Universities will not be receiving free education but the report recommends that TVET college education should be fee free in the form of grants and that “no student be partially funded” at these schools. The Presidency released the report - which was commissioned in January 2016 following the initial bout of Fees Must Fall protests - on Monday. Prior to its release,…

Discipline in schools: what the law says you can and can’t do

There are various ways learners ought to be disciplined in schools, and corporal punishment is not one of them, having been banned since 1997. On November 4, The Citizen reported that Daeraad School in the North West stripped an 18-year-old learner naked and held her in solitary confinement for nine days. This was punishment for sporting the wrong haircut and refusing to shave her head. Daeraad is a boarding school in Potchefstroom for learners with behavioural problems. Its principal, Abel Rudman, has denied the allegations…

Dismissed student teachers suspicious of ‘untrustworthy’ education NPO

A group of teaching students in Cape Town are accusing education non-profit organisation (NPO) Numeric of exaggerating its relationship with the department of basic education’s (DBE) bursary scheme Funza Lushaka and using students’ bursary money to fund itself. According to its website, Numeric trains and funds postgraduate education students to become maths teachers. The students attend weekly classes with Numeric for instruction in maths and pedagogy, and coach disadvantaged learners at after-school math programs in Cape…

#ZumaQandA: Twitter sips tea as Zuma evades all the important questions

President Jacob Zuma attended his final parliamentary question and answer session for 2017 on Thursday afternoon. As expected, it was not very enlightening; Zuma was as evasive as ever in answering the important questions. But Twitter kept it entertaining, The Daily Vox rounded up Twitter reactions. South Africa has been through the most this year with the Cabinet reshuffles, delaying the commission of inquiry into state capture, and various other allegations of corruption. So Twitter was awaiting the tea. #ZumaQandA…

You don’t have to go vegan, but here are 5 reasons to consume less animal products

It’s a popular misconception that veganism is a diet. It’s not. Veganism is a lifestyle which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practical, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to animals for food, clothing or any other purpose. That may seem extreme for most - not everyone is willing to cut pizza and leather jackets from their lifestyles. November marks World Vegan Month and The Daily Vox put together five reasons to consume less animal products. 1. It can be cheaper Eating plant-based food doesn’t have to be…

Leaked Fees Commission report will not inform universities’ 2018 decision-making

Universities are eagerly awaiting the Presidency’s release of the Fees Commission report so that budgets can be tabled for 2018. Over the weekend, City Press reported on a leaked copy of the report which said that free education is not feasible. The Fees Commission was set up early last year following the first bout of student protests against higher education fees. The 748-page report, with recommendations was handed to the president in August this year. A statement by Universities South Africa (USAf), an association of the…

WTF is the apartheid flag doing at #BlackMonday protests?

Protesters donned black and carried white crosses - and some the old apartheid-era flag - in the #BlackMonday protests. The protest raised questions about Afrikaner nationalism and white supremacy. On Monday, hundreds of protesters around South Africa blocked highways in support of #BlackMonday. They wanted to raise awareness about the growing prevalence of farm murders. AfriForum claimed that there have been 70 farmers murdered and 341 attacks since January compared to the 339 attacks and 64 murders last year. Protesters…

#CoffinAssault perpetrators are only sorry they were caught

In August 2016, Theo Jackson and Willem Oosthuizen forced Victor Mlotshwa into a coffin and threatened to set it alight. Their attack was caught on video and sparked outrage nationwide, and for good reason. It is excruciating to watch. It shows the two men forcing Mlotshwa into a wooden coffin, using their power in a way that hearkens back to the days of apartheid. Here's the video we made about #CoffinAssault last year. pic.twitter.com/d5sHl0ujWq — The Daily VOX (@thedailyvox) October 23, 2017 On Friday, Jackson and…

#LindiweOnEusebius: Sisulu fumbles with feminism

Lindiwe Sisulu was dragged on Twitter on Thursday for her problematic views on feminism and gender-based violence. And honestly, she deserves it. Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu inflamed South Africans when she said she “believes Khwezi believed she was raped”. Sisulu, who is running for presidency in the upcoming African National Congress (ANC) elections, told Radio 702’s Eusebius McKaiser that her campaign is centred around gender-based violence in South Africa. The interview went awry when a caller asked the…

UCT students disrupt classes and join CPUT in a march to Parliament

Students at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) Mowbray campus and the University of Cape Town (UCT) marched to Parliament on Wednesday. They demanded that President Jacob Zuma release the Fees Commission report. Parliamentary members - including Zuma - were in Parliament for the release of Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s Medium Term Budget Policy Statement. Students were met with a police presence and two UCT students were arrested outside of Parliament. In parliament the students of UCT and CPUT are being…

Sisonke Msimang on Always Another Country, rape culture and #MeToo

Conversations about the prevalence of sexual violence have been at the forefront of conversation in recent weeks with the #MeToo movement. This month, writer Sisonke Msimang launched her memoir Always Another Country. In it, she detailed two incidents: one of sexual violence she experienced as a child and another of racism. She only told her parents about one experience. At the book launch in Rosebank on 19 October, Msimang spoke to journalist Redi Tlhabi about it. What was the conversation you had with Redi regarding the…

UCT SRC demands release of Fees Commission report, may march to Parliament

Students at the University of Cape Town (UCT) are calling for the immediate release of the Fees Commission Report and a 0% fee increase for the 2018 academic year. At a mass meeting on Tuesday, students planned to shut down the university. These, along with other demands, were set out at a mass meeting that the outgoing student representative council (SRC) held on Tuesday at the UCT Memorial Hall formerly known as Jameson Hall. The hall was filled to capacity and students were in high spirits. UCT spokesperson Elijah…