Jean-Jacques Cornish

Provincial premiers selection tops ANC executive meeting

The top leadership of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress is meeting for the first time since the party’s election victory earlier this month with selection of provincial premiers top of their agenda.

The opposition Democratic Alliance is relieve the ANC deliberations are occupying the headlines – eclipsing controversy surrounding the departure of their parliamentary leader.

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The position of premier in the heartland Gauteng province is the trickiest issue facing the ANC top leadership.

President Jacob Zuma wants to keep Nomvula Mokonyane in the job.

The party’s provincial leadership’s saying she must pay for the ANC barely managing to retain control of the province.

The ANC’s committed to having women lead at least half of the eight provinces it controls.

With disputes over the premiership in at least four of these provinces, the ANC’s eager to avoid a split between the regional and national leadership creating two parties.

Opposition leader Hellen Zille denies reports that she’s caused the departure of parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko.

Zille says she’s never done as much to forward someone’s career as she did for Mazibuko

The departing politician says she has taken up a scholarship with Harvard University in the United States.

She’s avoided commenting on any clash she might have had with the party leader.


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Jean-Jacques Cornish is a journalist and broadcaster who has been involved in the media all his adult life.

Starting as a reporter on his hometown newspaper, he moved briefly to then Rhodesia before returning to South Africa to become a parliamentary correspondent with the South African Press Association. He was sent to London as Sapa’s London editor and also served as special correspondent to the United Nations. He joined the then Argus group in London as political correspondent.

Returning to South Africa after 12 years abroad, he was assistant editor on the Pretoria News for a decade before becoming editor of the Star and SA Times for five years.

Since 1999 he’s been an independent journalist writing and broadcasting – mainly about Africa – for Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape
Talk, Radio France International, PressTV, Radio Live New Zealand, Business Day, Mail & Guardian, the BBC, Agence France Press,
Business in Africa, Leadership, India Today, the South African Institute for International Affairs and the Institute for Security Studies.

He has hosted current affairs talk shows on Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk. He appears as an African affairs pundit on SABC Africa and CNBC Africa.
He lectured in contemporary studies to journalism students at the Tshwane University of Technology and the University of Pretoria.

He speaks on African affairs to corporate and other audiences.
He has been officially invited as a journalist to more than 30 countries. He was the winner of the 2007 SADC award for radio journalism.

He’s been a member of the EISA team observing elections in Somaliland, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Egypt and Tunsiai.

In October 2009 he headed a group of 39 African journalists to the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Peoples’ Republic of China.

In January 2010 he joined a rescue and paramedical team to earthquake struck Haiti.

He is immediate past president of the Alliance Francaise of Pretoria.

Jean-Jacques is a director of Giant Media. The company was given access to Nelson Mandela in his retirement years until 2009.
He is co-producer of the hour-long documentary Mandela at 90 that was broadcast on BBC in January 2009.