Zille among 2012 headline grabbers


FROM record-breaking ticket sales and an epic journey across the ocean in a candlestick to a little Ten$ion over artworks, here are some of 2012’s biggest Western Cape newsmakers.

Brett Murray

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RAEL LEVITTCape Town. 121219. An Asian Toad was brought into the Grassy Park SPCA. It is held here by Brett Glasby, Wild Life Unit Manager at Cape of Goodhope SPCA. The toad was found inside a candle stick holder by a customer at a local clothing/furniture store. Picture Courtney Africa

His painting depicting President Jacob Zuma with exposed genitals stirred up a political storm, with the ANC going on the attack. The artwork and its Cape Town-based creator Murray were among those at the centre of a court application to have it removed from the Goodman Gallery, where it was defaced in May, but the ANC later dropped its application.

Die Antwoord

Another artist who made headlines – this time of the musical genre – was zef rap group Die Antwoord from Cape Town.

They turned down a chance to work with US singer Lady Gaga, then a few months later, traded insults with her over Twitter after they featured a look-alike of her in a music video.

The duo also hit the news over a reference to SA resistance artist Jane Alexander’s artwork Butcher Boys in the teaser trailer for their album Ten$ion. The video was pulled from the internet amid copyright claims by acclaimed SA resistance artist Alexander.

Xolile Mngeni

The 25-year-old was tried and sentenced to life imprisonment this year for killing UK honeymooner Anni Dewani.

He was the third man to be jailed for the murder, leaving unresolved the alleged role of the last suspect, Anni’s husband Shrien.

Jack B Nimble

This Asian toad leaped into the hearts of Cape Times readers after its epic journey from China to Cape Town in a cargo shipment.

He was named Jack B Nimble after he was discovered in a candlestick in a Claremont store.

It was feared that the toad might have to be put down, but he has since found a new home at Montecasino Bird Garden near Johannesburg.

Helen Zille

Whether it’s for marching on Zuma’s Nkandla homestead, establishing a commission to investigate policing inefficiencies in Khayelitsha (now the centre of a high court application) or over her tweets, premier and DA leader Zille is one of the Western Cape’s most well-known newsmakers.

Desmond Tutu

While he has retired from public life, the outspoken Archbishop Emeritus Tutu has had a busy year.

Among the many times he’s made the news, mostly for his humanitarian work, he also this year faced a petition demanding that he be banned from speaking at Gonzaga University in Washington State in the US over his pro-abortion and same-sex views.

He also notably called for Tony Blair and George Bush to face prosecution at the International Criminal Court for each of their roles in the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq.

Natalie du Toit

Widely hailed as SA’s greatest Paralympian, Du Toit bowed out of competitive swimming after returning from this year’s Paralympics in London. She also came home with three gold medals and a silver.

Rael Levitt

The former chief executive of Auction Alliance stepped down after allegations of kickbacks paid by the company to senior bank staff, liquidators and attorneys, and bogus bidding practices.

The company also stopped operating.

The beliebers

They’ve become known as beliebers – die-hard fans of pop sensation Justin Bieber. And they broke SA ticket-sale records this year when tickets for his shows in Cape Town and Johannesburg went on sale.

Golden circle tickets were sold out within the first two minutes and general standing tickets were gone within five.

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