Tonight with Lester Podcast

The end of the DA's black leader experiment?

Guest : Sanusha Naidu | Political Analyst The Democratic Alliance’s (DA) post-2019 election review report recommends that party leader Mmusi Maimane step down. The DA’s disappointing run in the 2019 general election saw the knives come out for the charismatic leader — its first black party head. In 1994, the DA got 1.7% of the vote. In 1999 it got to 9.5% of the vote and grew steadily to a high of 22.3% in 2014. But the 2019 election saw the DA slump for the first time in its history — to 20.7% The review report committee was led by former DA chief strategist Ryan Coetzee. A party source said: “There’s a recommendation that the leader step down.” But those in Maimane’s corner said he will put his faith in council delegates. One of these said: “The report will be tabled on Saturday; it’s the only thing on the agenda. From there they will deliberate and it is up to council to decide.” The report is also thought to contain a suggestion that the party’s chief executive, Paul Boughey, leave. READ MORE: Paul Boughey, CEO of the DA has resigned Boughey seems to have preempted this, with his resignation late on Thursday. In his resignation letter, Boughey said that he had “reached an agreement in principle” with the party to step down, adding that the full details of the agreement would be revealed in the coming days. In a statement released by the DA, noting the resignation of Boughey, the party lauded his service to the party and the “Democratic project”. UCT political analyst Sanusha Naidu joins us live for her thoughts on this development

Latest episodes in this series

Lisa Joshua Sonn - Why our laaities are dying

20 November 2019 | 28 Minute Listen

Guests : Lisa Joshua Sonn                Alex Tabisher|columnist with the Cape Argus Tonight on our weekly slot with Lisa Sonn we have a guest, Alex Tabisher, a columnist with the Cape Argus who wrote an thought provoking column" Dear coloured parent, our laaities are dying..." Dear coloured parent Our laaities are dying... Our laaities are dying because 5-year-old Joshua was never taught to respect his elders. Our laaitjies are dying because it was cute when 2-year-old Chad learnt his first swear word. They are dying because when teachers sent rude Kyle home, Mommy came to school to defend her baby... We are dying coz in Grade 4 daddy told me to go back and fight Keenan, “Don’t leave it like that...” instead of just teaching me how to walk away Our laaities are dying coz mommy buys 10-year-old Jade the most expensive takkies just to make up for not always being around... They are dying because Uncle Shaun couldn’t discipline Raldo... “You are not his father, leave my child alone.” Our laaities are dying because self-respect went out the window... Our laaities are dying not because we are stupid, or have no ambition, or want to live like that... Coloured parent, our laaities are dying because we never had good role models to look up to... Most people will be quick to say it's the fault of government that we can no longer discipline or kids but the issue runs much deeper than that, we have abdicated our responsibility of raising & disciplining our kids.

Susanna Kennedy : What is a cacao ceremony?

18 November 2019 | 25 Minute Listen

Guest :  Susanna Kennedy               Nisreen Ismail  What is cacao? Cacao has been used in ancient ceremonies by South Americans (the Maya) for thousands of years. It has an active ingredient in it called theobromine — which can be translated to, ‘Food of the Gods’. So it makes sense that cacao was given its sacred status, and enjoyed in communal ceremonies by the Maya with their Gods. The word cacao actually came from the Maya word Ka’kau, and the Maya word Chokola’j — which means to drink chocolate together. You probably already know that cacao comes from the cacao bean — which is also used to make chocolate. But the cacao plant is seen as a medicinal plant, and has been used for a number of spiritual, medicinal and ceremonial purposes throughout history. It’s different to chocolate? Like I mentioned, cacao has a very different taste to the chocolate you’re probably used to. Milk chocolate usually only contains around 20–40% cacao, with milk and sugar making up the rest of the ingredients. Ritual cacao is made from mostly cacao beans, some water, cacao butter, and then mixed with a little bit of natural sugar to taste. It is always consumed in a warm liquid form out of a cup or mug, and usually has a very bitter taste to it. Different spices can be added such as chilli, cinnamon, nutmeg, or vanilla, depending on what you like. So when they say that eating chocolate is basically the same as eating a salad, because it comes from a plant — that’s true, but only when it comes to raw cacao, and not your typical selection box. Cacao is naturally high in iron, magnesium, and B-complex vitamins — which gives it a number of physical benefits as well as the spiritual benefits it has long been connected with. What can you expect from a cacao ceremony? Shamanic healing is one of the oldest holistic healing practices, which has been used by ancient cultures worldwide for centuries. Cacao ceremonies are actually a type of shamanic healing, but they don’t have hallucinogenic or “out of body” effects, unlike some of the other shamanic experiences. Cacao ceremonies are rooted in helping to rebalance the energies within us, and restore good health. There are so many different ceremonies in existence today. Some will lead you a journey of dance, while others will center on meditation and inner reflection. Many cacao ceremonies will involve a group of people sitting in a sacred circle, taking prayer, and setting intentions to be received. Each person shares what they want to let go of, and what they are calling into their hearts. This often involves opening up to complete strangers in the circle, and creates a safe and intimate space where everyone’s fears, hopes, sufferings, and dreams can be shared. What we often find is that most of us humans have very similar problems and fears, as well as hopes for our lives. This means that the people in the circle act as a mirror for each other. The ceremony the ends in dance, which allows the cacao to activate within the heart and body, and create transformation. Through opening the heart, cacao enables us to hear our true self, work through blockages and past traumas, dissolve any pent up negative energy, and help us align with who we truly are. It’s also a wonderful time to give ourselves mental and physical space and peace. You get to switch off, and retreat inwards, helping you to learn more about yourself, and gain clarity on where you are and where you’re headed.

Panel Discussion: History of the Chinese Community in SA

18 November 2019 | 20 Minute Listen

Guests : Francis Lai Hong | Deputy Chairperson of TCA |               Taryn Lock | Founder of Proudly Chinese South Africa |               Jacky He | member of the new immigrant community | On 25 November 2019 The Chinese Association's (TCA) legal case against 12 respondents accused of hate speech, harassment and unfair discrimination will resume in the South Gauteng High Court (sitting as an Equality Court). The case concerns a series of comments made by individuals, which were posted on the Facebook pages of Carte Blanche and the Karoo Donkey Sanctuary in early 2017. The case returns to court after having started in March this year. At the court inquiry next week, TCA will present evidence on the harmful, hurtful and discriminatory effects of these comments on the local Chinese community. The speech being challenged includes statements that Chinese people are “not human”, are “vile and barbaric”, and that South Africa should “get rid” of the Chinese. Further statements are that they should be “wipe[d] out” and that “we should start killing their children”. . TCA brought the case on behalf of over 40 organisations and prominent people from across the local Chinese community, including the All Africa China Association, the South African Chinese Enterprises Association, the China-Africa Women's Association, the SA-Chinese People’s Friendship Association, the South African Guangzhou Association of Trade and Cultural Exchange, and the Sino South African Chamber of Commerce.

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