Flash Briefing: Jacob Zuma jailed; Trump sues Twitter and other tech giants; delta variant spreads across Africa

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  • Former South African President Jacob Zuma, who was convicted on contempt-of-court charges last week, spent the night in prison after he failed in a last-ditch bid to delay serving his 15-month sentence. Confirmation of Zuma’s detention came shortly after the expiry of a Constitutional Court deadline that he be jailed by midnight on Wednesday. He’s being held in the hospital section of a newly built prison in Estcourt for medical assessment, Justice Minister Ronald Lamola told reporters. Zuma will serve at least a quarter of his 15-month sentence, Lamola said. 
  • The National Prosecuting Authority has backtracked on its statement that Interpol had issued red notices for the Gupta family. The corrected statement issued by the Investigative Directorate says that, ‘While it is correct that red notices have been issued for circulation among law enforcement entities of Interpol member states; red notices for the four Gupta family members are still under consideration by the Commission for the Control of Interpol’s Files.’
  • Africa had its worst week of the pandemic, with the number of weekly cases rising 20% as the delta variant spreads across the continent and becomes dominant in most regions. The World Health Organization’s Africa director has said that the situation is expected to worsen. The pandemic’s global death toll has surpassed 4 million.
  • Former President Donald Trump is suing Facebook, Twitter, Alphabet’s Google and their chief executives, raising the stakes in his battle against social media giants who have blocked him. Billing the effort as a move to defend First Amendment rights, Trump filed three separate class-action lawsuits in federal court in Florida against the tech giants and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey and Google’s Sundar Pichai. The lawsuits seek court orders to restore his social-media accounts, along with punitive damages, to ensure other users can’t be banned or flagged by the tech giants. 
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