Financial Mail


The topics you have to be able to discuss this week


1. Bashir billions seized

Sudan has confiscate­d assets valued at $4bn from former president Omar albashir, his family members and associates, Bloomberg reports. The country’s Anticorrup­tion & Regime Dismantlin­g Committee, set up last year, says the $4bn includes money, real estate and shares in companies.

Bashir, who was overthrown by the army a year ago after protests against his threedecad­e rule, was jailed in December after he was found guilty of illegally possessing millions of dollars in foreign currencies. He has also been indicted by the Internatio­nal Criminal Court for alleged crimes against humanity.

“I must put it on record: I am not [Adriano] Mazzotti’s friend and secondly, if anyone is doing crime in SA, they must be arrested. Whatever crime it is, whether it is with cigarettes, they must be arrested.”

Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, on her relationsh­ip with the alleged cigarette smuggler

2. Students cold-cocked

Over 40 students from Eswatini thought they were realising their dream of studying abroad with an opportunit­y in Taiwan. They were promised “hands-on practical and work experience” while earning a bachelor’s degree in business administra­tion. In reality, they spent five days a week skinning chicken carcasses at a freezing processing plant in western Taiwan.

The students were recruited for a work-study programme that claimed to offer a monthly wage covering accommodat­ion, tuition, insurance, other fees and spending money.

3. Minister out of line on an oil pipeline

Perhaps next time, Sonya Savage, the minister of energy in Alberta, Canada, will pick her words more carefully.

On a podcast last week she was asked about the progress of the Trans Mountain Expansion project, which is under constructi­on between Edmonton and Vancouver.

“Now is a great time to be building a pipeline, because you can’t have protests of more than 15 people,” she responded.

It may be true, but revelling in the inability of labour to protest due to a global pandemic and the fact that they daren’t risk their jobs seems a trifle insensitiv­e.

Even for a politician.

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