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South Africa: What’s Happening In South African News – July 20, 2022

Cape Town —

Update as at 16h30 SAST

MTN Bid for Telkom Slammed By NUMSA

The National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa has slammed plans by cellphone operator MTN to acquire Telkom. Both companies said the discussions were about MTN acquiring the entire issued share capital of the partially state-owned telecommunications provider, in return for shares or a combination of cash and shares in MTN. According to an IOL report, if the deal goes through, MTN will have to buy out the government as it holds a 40% stake in Telkom, while the Public Investment Corporation owns a further 14% of Telkom’s equity. NUMSA said it condemns the attempt at privatising Telkom.

Trace Whereabouts of 21 Teens Who Died of Methanol Poisoning, Police Urged

Police have been urged to trace the last movements of the 21 teenagers who died at the Enyobeni Tavern in East London last month. This after a toxicology report revealed methanol was found in their blood. Authorities were also not ruling out the possibility they might have gathered elsewhere to drink before going to the tavern in Scenery Park on June 26, 2022, reports News24.

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Hlaudi Motsoeneng Must Pay Back SABC Money

Former SABC chief operations officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng has lost his bid to overturn a court ruling ordering him to repay R11.5 million to the public broadcaster, TimesLive reports. This follows a December 2021 ruling by the Johannesburg High Court that he repays the money given to him by the SABC Board in questionable circumstances, for his negotiations with Multichoice for broadcasting rights and for access to the SABC Archives.

Eskom Denies Discouraging Solar Users

Fin24 reports that Solar Photovoltaics (PV) users could pay over R900 per month for Eskom's grid-tied electricity per month, based on the 2020/21 proposal from the power utility. However, Eskom says it is not trying to disincentivise people from opting for Solar PV and intends to submit a new tariff proposal to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) in August 2022 – it will apply from 1 April 2023 and 31 March 2024. It will be based on the principles of the 2020 plan, on which Nersa did not make a decision.

Biggest Granadilla Fruit Farm Moving to Ghana

The country's biggest granadilla fruit farm in White River Mpumalanga is moving to Ghana. The move is due to problems experienced at Transnet ports. The farm owners said delays and inefficient cooling systems cost it millions as fruit was spoilt, reports Business Insider South Africa and Farmers Weekly. The farm with 200 hectares of granadilla orchards, is rooting out its trees. The land will be used to grow Macadamia nuts which would be less susceptible to being affected by port disruptions. According to a farm shareholder, Ghana has favourable climatic conditions for passion fruit.

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