By Vanguard Reporter
A roundup of the week’s biggest news and newsmakers.
1.Chibok girls ‘married off’
Abubakar Shekau, the leader of Nigerian group Boko Haram has issued a new video in which he denied claims of a deal to free the 200 girls kidnapped in April from a school in the northern town of Chibok and says the schoolgirls have been ‘married off’ to Boko fighters.
“The issue of the girls is long forgotten because I have long ago married them off,” he said, laughing. “In this war, there is no going back.”
Speaking in Hausa, the local dialect, Shekau denied claims made last month by Nigeria’s military and presidency that they had reached a deal to end five years of deadly violence in the country’s northeast, as well as agreement to release the Chibok girls.
And he mocked the government for claiming that they were negotiating with an envoy from Boko Haram named Danladi Ahmadu.
“We don’t know that liar and fake Danladi Ahmadu, we never met this liar with his character as he is claiming,” said Shekau.
“We have nothing to do with him, and our war is not ending. Expect more – what you are seeing is just a little effort. There is no retreat in this Jihad; Allah is with us, and we are succeeding.”
To make his point, Shekau ordered his men to attack the hometown of Air Marshal Alex Badeh, the chief of defence, who on October 17 had announced the ceasefire.
2. Senzo Meyiwa laid to rest and police confirm arrest
Slain Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa was laid to rest in Durban on Saturday. His coffin arrived at the stadium with a full police honour guard and the country’s flag draped over it.
Over twenty thousand people braved the rain to pay their last respects at Durban’s Moses Mabhida stadium while several thousand more lined the streets of Durban along the route to his final resting place in Heroes Acre in the Chesterville cemetery.
South African Football Association president Danny Jordaan, speaking at the service, said: “Somewhere in our society the value of human life is being challenged.”
Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe said Meyiwa’s death made it very clear that the presence of firearms in South African Society needed to be debated. “A national discourse has started and it is welcome,” he told mourners, adding that South Africans would need to decide “whether we are hell-bent on self destruction or peaceful co-existence”.
The list of those who came to pay their respects included Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula, Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba and players from Kaizer Chiefs and Meyiwa’s team Orlando Pirates.
On Friday, a man appeared in court in connection with Meyiwa’s murder. Gauteng police spokesman Brigadier Neville Malila said: “(On Thursday), after receiving very positive information about a number of suspects, we conducted an identity parade during which some of the witnesses positively identified one person.”
The 25-year-old Vosloorus resident, Zenokuhle Mbatha, was arrested and charged on the basis of the positive identification. The National Prosecuting Authority said Mbatha would appear in the Boksburg Magistrate’s Court again on November 11.
3. Fikile Mbalula diagnoses Gareth Cliff as suffering from ‘Verwoerd hangover’
Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula has slammed radio personality Gareth Cliff for comments he made questioning the funeral costs of deceased Bafana Bafana and Orlando Pirates goalkeeper and captain Senzo Meyiwa.
While the official provincial state funeral was unfolding at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban on Saturday, Cliff, who is known for making inflammatory statements, came under fire from social media users after posting on his Twitter account that: “Who’s paying for this massive funeral for #SenzoMeyiwa?”
The tweet angered many users who responded with a flurry of insults and accused Cliff of being ‘racist’ and ‘insensitive’ for asking the question while the nation was still mourning. The users then asked Mbalula who responded in Xhosa, saying, “leave him (Myekeni) he is ‘suffering from a Verwoerd hangover’.”
Mbalula has since deleted the tweet from his timeline.
Cliff, who has already assured on his personal blog that he will not apologise for his twitter comments, hit back on Monday saying: “I was called every kind of vulgar thing by a horde of the least eloquent, most furious, marauding lunatics I didn’t know, and who couldn’t have all known Senzo either.”
4. Beyoncé to launch athletic brand with Topshop
Beyoncé and Topshop are partnering to create an athletic sportswear brand that you can wear as soon as fall 2015.
In the first of its kind, Beyoncé and Topshop will start as 50-50 partners in a venture called Parkwood Topshop Athletic Ltd.
“This not a collaboration. This is about building a brand and building a business – a separate, proper business, with separate overhead and a separate office,” Topshop owner Sir Philip Green told Women’s Wear Daily.
“I could not think of a better partner. I have always loved Topshop for its fashion credentials and forward thinking. Working with its development team to create and produce a technical and fashion-led collection is exciting and I’m looking forward to participating in all aspects of this partnership.” Beyonce said in a statement on Topshop’s website.
The line will have clothing, footwear, and accessories for dance and fitness that are still stylish enough to wear as regular clothes. Everything will be sold in Topshop stores and on Topshop.com.
–time.com, dailymail.co.uk, buzzfeed.com
5. Steve Hofmeyr blames black people for Apartheid
Steve Hofmeyr has come under fire since his tweet last week Thursday after he stated that: “… in my books Blacks were the architects of Apartheid”.
The backlash has been nothing short of threatening, with Twitter users calling Hofmeyr a racist, ignorant, stupid and a “racist piece of sh*t”.
One of his sponsors, Williams Hunt in Port Elizabeth also requested that he give back a car he had been given to drive around in, as they no longer wanted him representing their brand.
While many have given him cause to retract his statements, Hofmeyr is having none of it and continues to defend his position.
Meanwhile, puppet Chester Missing has waged a campaign asking Pick n Pay and Land Rover to stop sponsoring an Afrikaans music festival at which the singer is set to perform.
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