The Speaker
Friday, 14 June 2024 – 06:25

A week in preview: South African Elections and Brexit break through


You’re probably bored of this, but it is impossible not to talk about Brexit. It appears this week we are likely to see a breakthrough. It has been reported that the Conservatives and Labour are extremely close to agreeing a Brexit deal.

At current we don’t know what that will look like, but it is entirely possible that this will include the caveat of a referendum to ratify the final agreement, thus bypassing the ongoing parliamentary deadlock. However, given the cross-party nature of the current negotiations, it is likely to pass parliament with relative ease.

This would still require more talks with Brussels, to reconcile the EU-UK agreements, but the agreement between the parties would represent a significant breakthrough that would more greatly enable Britain to leave the EU.

However, following the leaking of events regarding ongoing talks – allegedly by the Prime Minister – shadow chancellor John McDonnell has suggested talks could be in jeopardy and break up. This is perhaps unlikely but given the volatile nature of the Brexit thus far, it would not be surprising.


South Africa are going to the polls this week, in an election that will see the President and provincial governments elected. Incumbent President Cyril Ramaphosa of the ANC – who has been in power since 1994 – is set to face Mmusi Maimane of the Democratic Alliance.

The ANC is the dominant party of South Africa and it is unlikely that they will be defeated in the May 8th election, with South Africa being one of the world’s only one-party electoral systems. Despite falling in the polls in recent weeks, the ANC still sits at over 50%, which places them almost 30 points ahead of the Democratic Alliance.

Corruption remains one of the prevailing issues in the election, with the ANC leadership committing to 15-year jail terms for those found to be involved in corruption. This has proved controversial throughout the election process, but it doesn’t seem as though the monopoly of the ANC is likely to end any time soon.

United States

Congress continue in their questioning of those involved in the Mueller probe. Following the testimony of Attorney General William Barr last week there have been calls for Robert Mueller to testify. If this will happen in the coming week is unlikely, but it shows the development of the congressional probe into the potential obstruction of the justice committed by the President.

Trump has largely said that this should not happen, a change of tune from recent talks and well, we can likely see more furious Twitter rants in the coming weeks. As pressures mount for Mueller to testify it is clear the Trump will become increasingly uneasy, which we can expect to bubble up over the coming days.

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