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Africa Press review

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African press review 11 April 2017


South Africa in turmoil as anti-Zuma protests overshadow Chris Hani Remembrance Day. Nigeria denies wild rumours of secret plans to tap phones and social media platforms. And Kenya expects the worst of binge drinking and deadly road accidents during Easter as court orders the release of drunk driving suspects.

We begin in South Africa and the robust coverage of protest marches across the country as nine opposition parties declared Wednesday a first “national day of action” to unseat President Jacob Zuma.

The marches coincide with the 24th anniversary of the death of Chris Hani, the chief of staff of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC). He was assassinated outside his home on 10 April 1993.

City Press says President Jacob Zuma took advantage of the annual wreath laying ceremony in honour of Hani to take aim at what he called racist marchers and an onslaught that had become more direct and is no longer hidden in the country.

Mail and Guardian says Zuma will be turning 75 on Wednesday when nine opposition parties, including the main Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Congress of the People (Cope), founded by ex-ANC rebels and the Economic Freedom Fighters, step up their action.

According to the publication, leaders of the nine parties on Monday briefed media on their plans going forward, including a march to the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

Mail and Guardian also says that the birthday gifts of rolling mass action prepared for Mr. President from his opponents include papers filed at the Constitutional Court requesting that a secret ballot be used in the vote of no confidence in Zuma, scheduled in Parliament on 18 April.

Times Live carries a statement from the main opposition DA party denouncing Zuma’s claims that the marches were inspired by racism against blacks.

The DA reportedly blasted the comments as clear proof that he is out of touch with the South African public’s very valid anger over his destructive leadership.

BusinessDay says President Zuma's backers vowed to take to the streets in the ANC leader’s defence.

In Nigeria, ThisDay relays a strong denial by the Federal Government that the Ministry of Interior Affairs is planning to order a recording and monitoring of all phones calls and social media posts in the country.

According to the newspaper, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, issued a statement on Monday dismissing the allegations about the monitoring of social media platforms like WhatsApp, Twitter or Facebook, which had gone viral on social media.

He reportedly likened the rumours to classic disinformation that has permeated the media space urging the public to disregard the false news being spread around.

And in Kenya, Daily Nation explodes into feats of anger after a Nairobi Appeals Court judge ordered drunk-driving suspects released and their cash bail returned, after ruling that police can’t charge anyone for failing the Breathalyzer test.

According to the newspaper, the verdict - which has also thrown into disarray several other pending cases across the country - couldn’t have come at a more dangerous time for law-abiding motorists.

Daily Nation reports that the Easter holiday is about to begin, and without the dreaded Alco blow on the roads, there is certain to be bingeing and deadly crashes.