Flash Briefing: SA asks Interpol to bring back the Guptas; ANC lacks support for EWC; UK vaccines for SA variant

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  • The ANC plans to change the constitution to make it easier to seize land without paying but this week hit a stumbling block, reports Bloomberg. The ANC plans to change the constitution to make it easier to seize land without paying but this week hit a stumbling block: it has failed to pin down sufficient support from other parties to push the changes through, reports Bloomberg. While the radical Economic Freedom Fighters, the third-largest party, backs expropriation, it says proposals flighted by the ANC don’t go far enough. The main opposition Democratic Alliance and other smaller parties oppose any constitutional changes, which require the backing of two-thirds of lawmakers.
  • S&P Global has affirmed SA’s rating, three notches below investment grade, says Reuters.
  • The Department of Health and Social Care says that ‘extra’ doses of the AZ vaccine – in addition to the 100 million already secured – are ‘under discussion’, reports The Telegraph. These will be ‘tailored’ to target the South Africa virus variant, now called Beta, and the UK has committed to funding clinical trials for the new ‘adapted vaccine’, it added.The U.K. government is in talks with AstraZeneca to buy coronavirus vaccine doses that are designed to protect against the variant of concern first detected in South Africa.
  • The National Prosecutions Authority (NPA) on Thursday said it applied to the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) to assist with the execution of arrest warrants for two Gupta brothers and their wives, reports EWN. “It’s also seeking the arrest of other suspects outside the country involved in the feasibility study of the Vrede dairy farm, in the Free State. Millions of rands were diverted from the farm project, which was intended to uplift poor people in the province. Iqbal Sharma, who is a business partner to Gupta associate Salim Essa, and former Free State officials Peter Thabethe, Limakatso Moorosi and Seipati Dlamini were formally charged with fraud and money laundering in Bloemfontein on Thursday. The former government officials are also charged with contravention of the Public Finance Management Act,” says the website.

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