South Africa is the southernmost country on the African continent; South Africa is renowned for its varied topography, great natural beauty, and cultural diversity. These made the country a favored destination for travelers since the legal ending of Afrikaan's “apartness” or racial separation.
South Africa has three cities that serve as the capital; they are Pretoria (executive), Bloemfontein (judiciary), and Cape Town (legislature). Today South Africa enjoys a relatively stable mixed economy that draws on its fertile agricultural lands, tourist attractions, abundant mineral resources, and highly evolved intellectual capital.
Here is what's happening in and affecting South Africa today
Incidents of Eskom sabotage
Several incidents of sabotage of Eskom power station in South Africa worsen the energy supply constraints. In May, several incidents of sabotage were reported at the power stations, which were managed by a South African utility provider Eskom.
The following incidents were confirmed:
May 19: A power cable leading to a valve at Tutuka power station unit 5 was cut. This was confirmed on the 19th of May by the officials that an air pipeline had been destroyed.
May 20: A cable was cut and stolen at Hendrina power station.
May 21/22: A cable was cut on unit 1 at Malta Power station.
May (date unknown): Wrong oil was added to a unit at the Duvha power station.
All of the affected stations were located in western Mpumalanga province. The assailant's identity is not clear. Eskom officials have indicated that they believe the incident was perpetrated by people with total knowledge of the power supply.
The South African rand weakened against the dollar
The South African rand weakened against the dollar as investors waited for a cue from the US federal reserve on its interest rate hike trajectory. An increase in the rate causes developed markets such as the US to drain capital from riskier emerging markets like South Africa.
The South African rand weakened against the dollar after inflation held steady at the top of the central bank's target range and retail sales numbers disappointed a day before the announcement of the central bank interest-rate decision. At 15:24 GMT as of May 24, the rand traded at 15.9930 against the USD, 0.56% weaker than its previous close.
The KwaZulu-Natal floods
The flooding hit KwaZulu-Natal, including the coastal city of Durban. The roads cracked and gave way to deep fissures, and a huge stock of shipping containers collapsed into the muddy waters. A bridge near Durban has swept away, leaving the people stranded on either side.
The flooding results from slow-moving storms, which have been damaged for several months. The government said they are still trying to assess the extent of the damage caused by the floodwaters. There are fears that many citizens have been killed while extensive property damage.
The SA satellites
The minister of communications, Khumbudzo Ntashavheni, said South Africa is moving ahead with a plan to develop a communication satellite. Satellites are used to relay signals which are used for Navigation, scientific research, telecommunications, broadcasting, and weather forecasting.
The minister of communications, Ntashavheni, who took over the communication portfolio in August 2021, said the satellite would reduce the leasing costs for entities reliant on satellite technology. The plan has been on the cards for several years. It is contained in the summary report and recommendations presented by the commission for the fourth year of industrial resolution in 2022. The development of the satellite could take years to complete, but the minister did not provide an accurate timeframe for the planned project.
According to the news, the South African government wants to house its major state-owned enterprise under a single holding company. The minister of public enterprises told the parliament that a centralized shareholder model for the country's commercial state-owned companies could separate the state's ownership functions from its policymaking and regulatory functions.
A state-owned enterprise (SOE) is a body that is formed by the government through legal means so that it can take part in activities of a commercial nature. State-owned enterprises are created to undertake commercial activities on behalf of the government. The government may at this moment assume full or partial ownership of a state-owned enterprise.