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Archive for the ‘Podcast’ Category

“It’s a sexy, sexy book!” – Eusebius McKaiser and Angela Makholwa discuss The Blessed Girl

When you are accustomed to the finer things in life – designer shoes, champagne, VIP lounges, exotic holidays abroad, a luxury penthouse, expensive wheels – what independent young woman in her right mind would want to let them go? Certainly not the beautiful, ambitious and super-streetsmart Bontle Tau, the girl who has used her good looks and winning charm all her life to get exactly what she wants. The lifestyle doesn’t come cheap, though, nor does maintaining the body that allows it (just ask Dr Heinz at the beauty clinic).

Luckily, Bontle has a degree in MENcology, and there is no shortage of blessers at her penthouse door, eager to give her all the love and (financial) support she needs.

Papa Jeff might be overweight and getting on a bit, and receiving some unwanted attention from the Hawks; and Teddy might not have fully come through for her on that messed-up tender business; but Mr Emmanuel, the Nigerian businessman with deep pockets and the possibility of conferring second wife status … could that be love? Keeping all her boyfriends happy and living a fabulous life is not without its challenges.

With so many people clamouring for Bontle’s attention – from her shebeen queen mother Gladys in Mamelodi, who is taking strain bringing up her teenaged brother, Golokile, on her own; to her girlfriends, Iris and Tsholo; not to mention her soon-to-be ex-husband, the ever-patient, ever-loving Ntokozo, Bontle barely has time to post on Instagram these days.

Sooner or later something’s got to give …

Angela recently was a guest on Eusebius McKaiser’s 702 Literature Corner show. Listen to the juicy conversation:

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Listen: Marcus Low discusses Asylum on AmaBookaBooka

AsylumBarry James is detained in a quarantine facility in the blistering heat of the Great Karoo.

Here he exists in two worlds: the discordant and unforgiving reality of his incarceration and the lyrical, snowy landscapes of his dreams. He has cut all ties with his previous life, his health is failing, and he has given up all hope. All he has to cling to are the meanderings of his restless mind, the daily round of pills and the journals he reluctantly keeps as testimony to a life once lived.

And then there’s an opportunity to escape. But to escape what? And where to? Can there be a life to go back to? Is there still a world out there in the barren wasteland beyond the fence?

I was sitting in the train looking out at the falling snow. I knew then that I was not going home … I was going to an unknown place on a train full of unknown people. And even though I knew I would not be coming back, that the factories that whooshed by were instantly hundreds of kilometres behind us, that the train would not deliver us anywhere where we’d want to be, I still felt grateful for the snow, the impossible snow. For it seems to me that even in the most bleak of worlds we’ll find something to hold on to … even if that is something as impossible as snow in this god-forsaken wasteland.

Low recently was a guest on Jonathan Ancer’s podcast, AmaBookaBooka. Listen to their conversation here:

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Why Onkgopotse JJ Tabane wants to talk frankly with politicians (Podcast)

Let's Talk FranklyPowerFM’s Sebenzile Nkambule invited Onkgopotse JJ Tabane to talk about his new book, Let’s Talk Frankly: Letters to Influential South Africans About the State of Our Nation, on her early morning show, Power Up.

Tabane is one of South Africa’s leading media and communications specialists, a community activist and a business executive. Let’s Talk Frankly is an exercise in accountability, offering readers a collection of letters to the big names of South African politics, including Gwede Mantashe, Helen Zille, Julius Malema, Signal Jammer, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Mmusi Maimane and Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma.

When asked why he chose to write letters like this, he says: “It’s very difficult to get some of these guys to account. You know, what do I do? Do I wait for Malusi Gigaba to come to my brunch before I can ask him why we are stuffing up the tourism numbers? He probably won’t come to my brunch.” The letters are not all negative, Tabane notes, and do not serve to pick a fight. He is merely saying what he feels need to be said and asking what needs to be asked in the spirit of accountability.

The book is not a compilation of his best letters, but a fresh offering of longer writings than those that we have come to know him by. In the interview, Tabane opens up about his book, his motivations behind writing it, some of the issues he tackles in it, and how it has been received.

Listen to the podcast:


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“Transformation” Has Become an Abused Word in Our Society – Ferial Haffajee (Podcast)

What If There Were No Whites In South Africa?Sebenzile Nkambule recently interviewed City Press editor Ferial Haffajee about the pertinent themes and issues in her new book, What If There Were No Whites In South Africa?

In the interview, Haffajee talks about the events that compelled her to write the book: “My newsmaker of the year is definitely something between hashtag Pay Back the Money and hashtag Fees Must Fall, but if I were to choose a second then I certainly think this is the year where the race debate or perhaps even race rage took centre stage for me and became a talking point month after month after month.”

On the title, Haffajee says, “I hope it interests people enough to pick it up.” She continues, “It’s certainly not ‘let’s put all white people back on the boats to wherever’, not at all because I’m very much a child of the Nelson Mandela generation, I am that child of ’94, I completely buy into our constitutional vision, but what interests me is that 23 years hence, why does a new generation of our young people, what we have carelessly called ‘born-free’ in the past, still feel so overwhelmingly that white power stands in the way of a better life in our country? It’s that book, it’s their voices that come to the fore.”

In this insightful podcast, the author explains why she believes “transformation” has become an abused word in our society.

Listen to the podcast:

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“Not Very Nice” – Ferial Haffajee’s Mother on the Title: What If There Were No Whites In South Africa?

What If There Were No Whites In South Africa?Ferial Haffajee was interviewed by Sebenzile Nkambule earlier this week on her Power Up books feature on Power FM.

Haffajee begins by explaining the contentious title for her book, which her very polite mother called “not very nice”. The author, who is also editor of City Press, is launching her book at The Book Lounge in Cape Town tonight.

Haffajee says she is “a child of 1994″ and her “buy-in” to our constitution guided her thinking on the race issues she discusses in this book. In her the broadminded and deep-thinking conversation with Nkambule, Haffajee gives her opinion on the student movements, black and white power and what this country would be without white people.

Listen to the podcast:


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Songezi Zibi and Carol Paton Discuss SAA’s Interdict Against Business Day, and Why They’re Fighting it (Podcast)

Raising the BarYesterday, Business Day’s headline story made headlines when it was interdicted by SAA. The airline’s technical insolvency was the subject of the article against which the interim High Court Order was issued.

Business Day editor Songezo Zibi, who is also the author of Raising the Bar: Hope and Renewal in South Africa, has written an article in which he outlines the series of events that led up to and followed the interdict.

Zibi says that his newspaper was instructed not to publish the story, which was “premised on an internal memo from the head of legal, risk and compliance at SAA, Ursula Fikelepi, to the board of the airline”. The article revealed details of SAA’s financial insolvency. However, the order came more than three hours after the newspaper had gone to print.

Read Zibi’s article:

The order includes the print edition but since we print our first edition at 9.30pm and the second edition at 10.30pm it was not possible to comply with the order, so the print edition is on the retail shelves. Neither SAA nor its attorneys, considering the lateness of the hour, attempted to notify the Business Day telephonically of their intentions.

Zibi was featured on Redi Thlabi’s CapeTalk radio show to explain the interdict, and why Business Day intends to argue in court that it is “flawed”:

Carol Paton, who with Nicky Smith wrote the article in question, was featured on Xolani Gwala’s Talk Radio 702 show to discuss the matter. She speaks about what her story dealt with, and possible reasons for SAA’s extreme reaction:

Paton and Smith have written another article about SAA’s precarious financial situation, published in this morning’s edition of Business Day:

Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene said on Tuesday the Treasury was still considering the application by the board of South African Airways (SAA) for a restructuring of a lease transaction with Airbus, and had not reached a decision yet.

The board’s intention to restructure the transaction has led to the collapse of a previous agreement with Airbus, which in turn triggered contractual financial obligations for SAA.

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“It’s a Disgrace” – Onkgopotse JJ Tabane Describes the State of Public Discourse (Podcast)

Let's Talk FranklyOnkgopotse JJ Tabane was a guest on Aubrey Masango’s Radio 702 show recently, chatting about his new book, Let’s Talk Frankly: Letters to Influential South Africans About the State of Our Nation.

In Let’s Talk Frankly, Tabane addresses letters to influential South Africans, including Gwede Mantashe, Helen Zille, Julius Malema, Zwelinzima Vavi, Patrice Motsepe and Steve Hofmeyr.

Tabane says he was prompted to write the book by what he feels is “the death of public discourse and the death of internal democracy” in South Africa.

Before liberation, Tabane says, “we had a plethora of position papers”, whereas now there are none. “It’s a disgrace. We shouldn’t mince our words about it,” he says.

Listen to the podcast:


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Kabelo Mabalane: Black Men are Taught That Vulnerability is a Weakness, But it’s a Sign of Strength

I Ran For My LifeKabelo Mabalane, former member of TKZ and drug addict who has now completed eight Comrades Marathons, was recently interviewed by Azania Mosaka about his biography I Ran For My Life: My Story.

In the podcast, Mabalane says that the process of sharing his story and his struggles has been wonderful. He says being honest about his flaws is important, adding that men, particularly black men, have “been brought up to believe that when one shares their weaknesses and shares their vulnerabilities, it’s a sign of weakness. And I’ve since learned that it’s actually a sign of strength”.

Mabalane goes on to describe his relationship with his father, how his ideas about manhood have developed and how men today must learn from the mistakes made by men that came before them. He also speaks about how this interacted with his music career and some of the significant missteps he has taken.

Listen to the podcast:


Mabalane has achieved great success in the music industry. But, as he told the audience at his book launch in Rosebank, it was not his first choice.

Nandipha Pantsi covered the launch for The Citizen:

“When I left high school, I was going to be a Springbok, that was my goal. I was going to fill the quota, but that didn’t work out for me. I decided to study sports management at Wits Tech – the only course that I could get into, but I was bad at that too.”

Mabalane had been friends with his group members Tokollo Shabalala and Zwai Bala since high school, but when sports and academics didn’t work for them, they decided to make music.

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13 Years Clean and On the Way to a Comrades Silver: Kabelo Mabalane Shares His Story (Podcast and Video)

I Ran For My LifeKabelo Mabalane, TKZee star who has just released his biography I Ran For My Life: My Story, was recently invited to The Complimentary Breakfast radio show on Jacaranda FM to speak about his story.

For the first part of the interview, host Rian van Heerden spoke with Mabalane while they were both on treadmills. Mabalane, who has completed the Comrades Marathon eight times and is hoping for a silver medal next year, was hardly short of breath. Van Heerden, in contrast, was in great need of the emergency stop button by the end of the chat.

Watch the video:

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Mabalane told Van Heerden why “Vida la Vida” by Coldplay is one of the best songs on his running playlist, and shared what it felt like to cross the finish line of the Comrades the first time:


In an different interview with Ntombizodwa Makhoba for City Press, Mabalane spoke about his being “13 years clean”. His message to other addicts is “There is help, hope, and it is possible.”

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“For the ANC to Remain a Winning ANC, It Must Keep the Tradition of Being Self-critical” – Frank Chikane

The Things that Could Not be SaidNo Life of My OwnEight Days in September

Frank Chikane, struggle veteran and author of The Things that Could Not be Said and other books, has recently caused a stir by voicing his opinion about the failings of the ANC.

In a controversial letter to ANC leadership, Chikane said that the party had lost its way, and would lose its voter support if it did not galvanise a courageous turnaround.

Chikane, former president Thabo Mbeki’s presidency director-general, warned against party members being too “gripped by fear” to voice their concerns.

“For the ANC to remain a winning ANC, it must keep the tradition of being self-critical. Failure to do so will result in its demise and it losing confidence and its position as leader of society.”

He quoted an ANC document in 1929 that said “inner criticism is a weapon for strengthening the party organisation and increasing its fighting power”.

Chikane’s point about self-criticism was echoed by an ANC national executive committee member in an interview with City Press. Chikane said there was “no gainsaying that members of the ANC are going through a nightmare about their organisation”, he wrote in his presentation. “Members know that there is something going wrong, but can’t scream or wave their hands for help.”

By his frank criticism of the state of the ANC’s internal politics, Chikane raised the ire of the party. But, his call for a strengthening of the ANC’s capacity for self-criticism has been seconded by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe:

Nor is Mr Motlanthe the first senior ANC person to lash out against the party’s rapid drift from its founding values.

Former director-general in the Mbeki presidency Frank Chikane came out before the party’s national general council meeting last month with a document that warned the ANC had reached a point of no return and faced the real possibility of losing elections, saying corrupt practices in party structures led to corrupted leaders who protected themselves at all costs and did not want to relinquish power.

There have been other mutterings from ANC veterans, and indeed from the party itself, whose leadership made a point at the national general council of criticising factionalist politics and corruption.

Chikane was recently called on by Redi Tlhabi for Talk Radio 702 to speak about his vision for the ANC moving forward, using the recent Fees Must Fall protests as a point of departure.

Listen to the podcast:



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