Monthly Archives: May 2016

South Africa’s apartheid recovery is not yet complete until the lands owned by white and foreign individuals and enterprises are returned to the public’s hands.

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South African President Jacob Zuma is to sign the bill into a law that would allow the government to expropriate land in the interest of the public. This would mean retrieving the land from white people and return them to native Africans as a sign of balance and democracy.

The governing nationalist coalition swore the bill will tackle all injustices and prevent apartheid-related inequality and imbalances for native Africans.

The bill has been an emotional issue for South Africa in the last 22 years after the banishing of the apartheid system in Africa.

The bill will allow a government adjudicator to pay the land owner a value it determines fit for the land. Then the land would be held by the government until a native African can purchase the land for development.

“The passing of the bill by parliament is historic and heralds a new era of intensified land distribution programme to bring long-awaited justice to the dispossessed majority of South Africans,” the ANC (African National Congress) said in a statement.

About 10% of land in white ownership has been transferred to black owners since the end of apartheid, which is only a third of the ANC’s target.

Venezuelans face hunger and extreme looting after Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro declared Venezuela is in a state of emergency for 60 days. Maduro said a threat to external security exists and his administration must deal with the threat as soon as possible.

Citizens have become restless. Many are waiting in line for food in relief centres. Meanwhile, looting and social tensions have increased in the city of Guarenas.

According to citizens, some have resorted to eating domesticated animals including dogs, cats and pigeons to resolve local food shortages.

A citizen said most people have no food. Power is cut to only four hours a day and crime is soaring in the country.

Most citizens said Maduro would not take responsibility for the trouble. They said “something has to give.”

Venezuela’s economy is suffering from low oil prices. Combined with limitations to dollar purchases, the country’s import-dependent economy is seeing a shortage on food and medicine. Cases of cancer, HIV, diabetes and hypertension are increasing nationwide.

“Shortages are just going to get worse in the coming weeks and months, and the government’s bet that they can keep the protests and looting … small-scale seems risky,” said David Smilde, a senior fellow at the Washington Office on Latin America. “Venezuelans are not used to hunger and do not have a lot of respect for Maduro as their leader.”

According to Maduro:

“They don’t want a referendum, they want a coup,” Maduro said this week during meeting with foreign journalists. “We have no obligations to hold any type of referendum in this country.”

With the Syrian Regime and Rebels again at each other’s throats, peace talks in Syria remain deadlocked. The Syrian ceasefire and peace talks revolve around Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s position in Syria and his involvement in the future parliament.

Syrian analysts believe that negotiations had fallen apart as the ceasefire between rebels and the Syrian regime had proven non-existent.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said he is in Geneva “intensely” working on another ceasefire for both parties.

Due to the resume of Syrian conflict, the Islamic State and other terrorist groups could inflate the situation further.

According to US Defence Secretary Ash Carter, Syrian peace is still a long way off.

“Our strategy … is that Assad leaves, the structures of the government remain in place — but without Assad — and that the moderate opposition becomes part of the government and there is a government that can give the Syrian people what they deserve, which is a country that runs and a country that’s moderate and a country that treats its people decently,” Carter told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“We’re a long way from that now, but that’s the vision for Syria,” he continued.