Thabo Mbeki Calls For A ‘Rebirth’. Is South Africa Up To The Task?

By Guest Contributor 01-03-17 00:05

The appointment of former South African president Thabo Mbeki as Chancellor of one of the country’s largest tertiary institutions, the University of South Africa (UNISA), comes at a unique moment in the country… writes Sabelo Ndlovu-Gatsheni, University of South Africa. Universities are struggling to cope with student movements’ revolutionary demands for relevant, decolonised and free […]

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Justin Sullivan Photos & Viewpoint from the Streets of SONA 2017

By Guest Contributor 10-02-17 12:21

A different battle was fought on the streets of SONA (State of the Nation Address) in Cape Town, South Africa yesterday – one that saw ANC school children aggravate EFF supporters, resulting in police using unnecessary force to disperse children no older than 15… writes JUSTIN SULLIVAN. An elderly man raising his hand to a younger […]

How Night Club Bouncers Police the Social Order – From Berlin to Johannesburg

By Guest Contributor 23-01-17 11:54

Across the world bouncers remain gatekeepers to the nightclub experience: controlling the queue at the door; curating the size and look of the crowd; and securing the institution from unwanted “intruders”. Indeed, “door policies” and “bouncing” remain characteristic of nightclub cultures globally. Last year I attended the Berlin NIGHTS Conference which saw artists, club owners, […]


When a Childhood is Lived in Horror…

By SAPeople Contributor 23-11-16 16:37

We prayed from the safe, secure comfort of our little world (in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa) where nothing bad was possible… writes CHARMAIN NAIDOO. My parents have been much on my mind this week. It’s not unusual, at this time of the year, close to Christmas and even closer to my birthday, for me to sink […]

HUMOUR: “Why I Bribe Traffic Cops”

By SAPeople Contributor 19-11-16 14:22

I just got stopped by a traffic cop on the way back from a round to the Pick ‘n Pay and the bottle store. He jumped out from behind a Stop Street (at which I did not stop) causing me to slow down from an over-the-speed-limit-speed and waved me down, causing me to break suddenly, revealing […]


What Must Fall: Fees or the South African State?

By SAPeople Contributor 21-10-16 19:14

The polarising effects of #FeesMustFall are now pervasive in the academy, and probably beyond. Academics turn on each other, as do their schools and faculties. Whole universities are pitted against one another – the “Wits option” vs the “UCT option”. Some academics are accused of being blindly supportive of “the innocent students” and parading their […]

Where was the Media on Wednesday Night for this Student Gathering?

By SAPeople Contributor 14-10-16 13:48

Social media and mainstream media have been quick to post images and videos of fires being set and violence being perpetrated during South African student protests… but where were these reporters on Wednesday night when the flames that burnt were from a candlelit vigil and the gathering was beautiful and peaceful? Photographer JUSTIN SULLIVAN offers his views… […]


An Ode to Outgoing Public Protector Thuli Madonsela

By SAPeople Contributor 13-10-16 11:08

I salute a woman who inspires me and makes me want to be a better person, and sincerely hope she will find my Saturday Night Live/ Spitting Image style script funny. The outgoing Public Protector is a formal woman. Calm, quietly spoken, proper (in both senses of the word: real, “kosher” and also correct, official, […]

Why South Africa Faces a Train Smash if its Finance Minister is Removed

By SAPeople 13-10-16 09:53

The relatively trivial nature of the charges against South Africa’s Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, and the way in which the prosecution has been pursued, leads to the conclusion that this is a trumped up charge. It also suggests that Gordhan is being prosecuted for reasons unrelated to the law and order mandate of the body […]

South Africa Needs to Fix its Dangerously Wide Wealth Gap

By SAPeople 08-10-16 10:16

South Africa is known for its extreme income inequality, which is one of the highest in the world. Ten percent of the population earn around 55%–60% of all income, compared to only 20-35% in the advanced economies. But while the top income share is high in its own right, it pales in comparison to those […]

Poem: I wanted to Grow Old in Africa, by Cindi Barker

POEM: I Wanted to Grow Old in Africa

By SAPeople 08-07-22 22:17

A beautiful poem from freelance writer, poet and author Cyndi Barker, originally from Zimbabwe… now living in the United Kingdom:   I wanted to grow old in Africa With the sun warming my decrepit bones And my great grandchildren running through my grapevine The heat of the sun turning their skins bronze While they played in […]

Heritage Day. Germiston Style.

By SAPeople 24-09-16 14:06

On Heritage Day last year, the following slight differences between myself and my neighbours became apparent. The neighbours were: young, Zulu and stone cold sober. Moreover, they had a sparkly blue pool and I did not. It was a very hot day, even in the shade of the mulberry tree. “Let’s ask the neigbours if […]

It’s Not ‘Free’ If I Am Paying for It, Poepol!

By SAPeople Contributor 21-09-16 18:00

I’ve stripped my moer for these blooming students now! Hear ye! Hear ye! This is the most important paragraph of this whole piece: The Government does not have any money! Not a single cent. It gets all its money from taxpayers! So when you are asking the ‘government’ for ‘Free’ education, you are asking ME, […]

The Lingering, Unspoken Pain of White Youth who Fought for Apartheid

By SAPeople 07-09-16 14:04

The legacies of apartheid in South Africa can only be understood by making sense of the complexities of the past. This includes recognising what those who were young during the apartheid era – and who are now the elders and leaders of our society – experienced during that time. In the roughly 30 years between […]

Why Pokemon Go Became an Instant Phenomenon

By SAPeople 19-07-16 17:11

In the last week, Pokemon Go, an augmented reality game for mobile phones, has taken off. Daily traffic for the game exceeded Twitter and Facebook use. What is driving this intense interest and involvement? One way to understand is to take a closer look at the game’s design. First, for those who haven’t played or […]


Beautiful Tribute to South African Soldiers in Italy

By SAPeople Contributor 28-06-16 15:26

South African tourists, Peter and Michelle Roos, captured these poignant photos and the mood of a cemetery in Italy that became the last resting place for so many young South African soldiers… Michelle says that in the “midst of hedonistic pleasures” in Italy, the graves provided “a somber dose of other things that happened in […]

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