Today's Big Stories

EFF cuts Blade to size; Signal glitch was Zuma's safety & Union calls on Telkom

EFF finds Blade Nzimande's words too sharp

Fresh on the heels of an apology from Parliamentary speaker Baleka Mbethe to EFF's leader Julius Malema for calling him a cockroach, comes another blow out between the two parties. Minister of higher education Blade Nzimande was accused of threatening the EFF "with more violence".

The clash came at the end of the second day of fractious debate on President Zuma's #SONA2015. Nzimande who was ANC's last speaker accused the DA and the EFF to be in an alliance against what he termed "Majority rule", and that "they shouldn't start what they couldn't finish".

The EFF's Julius Malema responded with his usually colorful character, shouting that they "were not scared of Blade" and they "will finish this". Blade later responded that his words were not meant to be a threat to anybody and that he was misunderstood.

Today is President Jacob Zuma's turn to respond to #SONADebate2015 after opposition parties plucked holes into his #SONA2015 speech, and many will be paying careful attention to not only his body language but whether he will make any reference to any specific party leader's speech or even touch on the elephant in the room...the big Nkandla.

Signal glitch was for Zuma's safety

Udo Carelse standing-in for John Robbie spoke to state security minister David Mahlobo seeking clarity on what has been a bone of contention and a huge subject of news and conversations since last week's #SONA2015 by President Jacob Zuma. Udo asked the minister who gave the order for the signal to be jammed, to which David Mahlobo responded that there was never any executive order given to have any signal glitches or jamming. David confirmed there was a device that was switched on, but was not meant to bar media from doing their jobs. The minister explained that the particular device which was switched on for the safety of President Zuma and other political leaders, was to allow for a no-fly zone.

The confusion came when cellular networks were functional during the passage of the political leaders on the red carpet, but weird enough the cellphone network ceased to function only inside parliament, where the said political leaders' safety was ensured.

Minister Mahlobo elaborated that they were busy with an investigation as to who kept the signals off inside parliament but was careful to say they will never disclose people working in the intelligence committee to the public. "On the basis of risk management and national security, you can use any device to counter intelligence risks that are there", said David Mahlobo, emphasizing the need for the signal glitches experienced during the #SONA2015.

Should we expect more signal glitches in the future? "We can confirm that for every event where the head of state is there. there'll always be counter intelligence measures that will be in place", concluded the minster of state security.

Telkom still to make a call on job cuts

Telkom's Jackie O Sullivan spoke to Nikiwe Bikitsha on the #MiddayReport a few days ago about their plans to cut jobs. She couldn't confirm or deny it, only saying they couldn't speculate when it came to people's livelihood. There seems to be a network breakdown between Telkom and Unions representing the many thousands of people working for the parastatal. Communications Union's Aubrey Tshabalala has called on Telkom to provide clarity and reasons behind their planned restructuring that may cost thousands of jobs.

Telkom has started major restructuring that may result in some staff being retrenched. The company says some of its direct stores nationwide will be closed as they are no longer viable business operations.

Solidarity Union's spokesperson Marius Croucamp has also confirmed on radio 702 that they have received some communication from Telkom but it was very unclear and misleading. Stay tuned for developments on this story.

Read the EWN story HERE.


This article first appeared on 702 : EFF cuts Blade to size; Signal glitch was Zuma's safety & Union calls on Telkom


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