OSCAR TRIAL: Lawyers for murder-accused Oscar Pistorius indicated this weekend that they would be taking legal action against an Australian media house that broadcast footage of Pistorius re-enacting the night he shot Reeva Steenkamp. The trailer for the Australian current affairs programme Sunday Night shows Pistorius walking rapidly on his stumps with an imaginary gun in his hand. In another scene, Pistorius carries a woman, reportedly his sister Aimee, out of his bathroom to show how he carried his girlfriend. It also shows Pistorius screaming: “Get out! Get out of my f*cking house!”, and “God, help, please help me!”, and repeatedly “Reeva! Reevaaaaaa!” as well as a reconstruction of him firing four shots through the toilet door. His lawyers issued a statement on Sunday evening describing the broadcast as a “staggering breach of trust” and an invasion of the family’s privacy, adding that Australia’s Channel 7 bought the footage unlawfully. The trial is set to continue in the Pretoria High Court today with the cross-examination of sports medicine professor, Wayne Derman, who treated Pistorius.
NEWS: Several Zulu leaders, including King Goodwill Zwelithini are set to make what could be the largest land claim in SA history. Speaking to City Press, Judge Jerome Ngwenya, chair of the Ingonyama Trust said: “From what we have gathered thus far…[the area] goes outside the boundaries of the [KwaZulu-Natal] province to the Eastern Cape, Free State and part of Mpumulanga.” Investigations are ongoing to find the extent of the claim, which covers land taken from 1838 onwards despite the fact that the legislation only allows for claims on land taken from 1913 onwards. Deadline for submission of the claim is March 2015. The submission comes after President Jacob Zuma last month signed the Restitution of Land Rights Amendment Bill into law – which re-opens restitution claims that closed at the end of 1998. Only some 80,000 land restitution claims were lodged by the 1998 deadline and it is estimated that there are up to five times as many valid cases that can be brought by victims of apartheid-era forced removals.
LOCAL: Pigs have been found starving and eating one another on a farm owned by Former North West Premier Thandi Modise, The Sunday Independent reports. Modise bought the multi-million rand farm in Modderfontein, near Potchefstroom, around three years ago. Police and Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) officials made the discovery on Saturday. The remaining 85 pigs on the farm had begun cannabalising the 58 dead pigs, and were reportedly drinking their own urine. Sheep, geese, goats and ducks had also died on the premises. It appears the animals had been without water and food for a week, possibly two. There were no farmworkers on the property, no electricity, and the water pumps were broken. Modise said she learnt of the neglect late on Saturday. “I am not a farmer. I am trying to farm. I am learning. But if you are a woman and you are learning, you are not allowed to make mistakes.” She said the farm had a manager, who had a family emergency. His interim replacement had disappeared.
BUSINESS: The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) appears to be defying the country’s bleak economic outlook, closing at its highest ever level on Friday, Fin24 reported on Monday. The rise was due to strong global markets and increasing commodity prices. The website reported that the JSE All-share index has increased by close to 35% during the past year, despite warnings from ratings agencies that the South African economy could face yet another ratings downgrade.
ENTERTAINMENT: Harrison Ford’s injury will cause production on Star Wars: Episode VII to be suspended for two weeks. Disney announced Sunday that shooting would be halted for two weeks in August to adjust the production schedule following Ford’s injury. The 71-year-old actor broke his leg in June during filming of the much-anticipated sequel at Pinewood Studios outside of London. Disney had said earlier that Ford’s injury wouldn’t cause any delays. The studio said Sunday that “Episode VII” is still “on track” to wrap in the fall and be released in December 2015. The accident involved a spacecraft door on the Millennium Falcon falling on Ford’s leg. His recuperation was expected to take up to two months. Star Wars: Episode VII also stars Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o.
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Sources: Sunday Independent, Sapa, Fin24