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Civil Disobedience Movement Nominated For 2022 Nobel Peace Prize



Civil Disobedience Movement Nominated For 2022 Nobel Peace Prize

A Norwegian academic has disclosed that the civil disobedience movement that has sprung up in Myanmar since the military coup has been nominated for the 2022 Nobel Peace Prize.

Kristian Stokke, professor of sociology at the University of Oslo, said on Friday that the movement represents an exemplary peaceful response to the power grab by Myanmar’s army on February 1.

“The civil disobedience movement is an important mass mobilisation for democracy in Myanmar that is taking place, so far, with non-violent means,” he told AFP.

“This pro-democracy movement, especially if successful, can also have consequences outside Myanmar and inspire other non-violent pro-democracy movements elsewhere at a time when democracy is under pressure from authoritarian forces,” he added.

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According to the Assistance Association of Political Prisoners (AAPP), a local monitoring group, 320 people have been killed and nearly 3,000 arrested since the coup that ousted Aung San Suu Kyi — who herself received the prestigious award in 1991.

“What is important and gives a glimmer of hope is that what started as a response to a military coup has become a broader alliance across the many differences, especially ethnic ones, within Burmese society,” Stokke said.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee only accepts nominations submitted before the 31 January deadline, so the proposal submitted last week by Stokke and five other academics can only be considered for next year’s prize.

Tens of thousands of people, among them parliamentarians and ministers from all countries, former laureates and certain university professors, are eligible to submit a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize.

The committee itself does not disclose who was considered or even nominated other than announcing the winner, though those who submit a nomination can publish it.

The 2021 peace prize winner will be announced on October 8. The World Food Programme (WFP) won last year.

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Cyril Ramaphosa Re-elected South African President 



President Cyril Ramaphosa

Cyril Ramaphosa  has been  re-elected as South African president following a landmark coalition deal between the governing African National Congress (ANC) and opposition parties.

The new government of national unity combines Mr Ramaphosa’s ANC, the centre-right Democratic Alliance (DA) and smaller parties.

In his victory speech, Ramaphosa hailed the new coalition, and said voters expected the leaders to “to act and to work together for the good of everyone in our country”.

The agreement was hashed out on a day of high political drama, which saw the National Assembly sitting late into the evening for votes to confirm who would hold power in the new administration.

It got 40% of the vote, while the DA came second with 22%.

ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula called the coalition deal a “remarkable step”.

It meant Ramaphosa – who replaced Jacob Zuma as both president and ANC leader following a bitter power struggle in 2018 – was able to retain power.

The next step is for Ramaphosa to allocate cabinet positions, which will include members of the DA.

The multi-party deal does not involve two ANC breakaway parties, and they will probably benefit if it fails to deliver economic improvements demanding by voters.

But opinion polls suggest many South Africans want this unprecedented grand coalition to succeed.

The ANC had always polled above 50% since the country’s first democratic elections in 1994, which saw Nelson Mandela become president.

However, support for the party has been dropping significantly because of anger over high levels of corruption, unemployment and crime.

Addressing South Africa’s parliament after his confirmation, Ramaphosa called back to his party’s first presidential victory 30 years ago.

“We have been here before, we were here in 1994, when we sought to unite our country and to effect reconciliation – and we are here now,” he said.

An alliance between the centre-right DA and the ANC is unprecedented as the two parties have been rivals for decades.

Under Nelson Mandela, the ANC led the campaign against the racist system of apartheid and won the country’s first democratic elections.

The DA’s critics have accused it of trying to protect the economic privileges the country’s white minority built up during apartheid – a charge the party denies.

Addressing lawmakers late on Friday in Cape Town, John Steenhuisen, the leader of the DA, said: “Today is a historic day for our country, and I think it is the start of a new chapter.”

The National Assembly also swore in a speaker from the ANC, while the post of deputy speaker went to the DA.

Among the party leaders speaking after the agreement was reached on Friday was Julius Malema, head of the Economic Freedom Fighters – the party he founded after leaving the ANC in 2013.

He said while his party accepted “the results and the voice of the people of South Africa”, he criticised the agreement, saying: “We do not agree to this marriage of convenience, to consolidate the white monopoly power over the economy and the means of production in South Africa.”


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Woman To Get $1bn After Divorce 



By John Michael Ojo

Following a court ruling on Thursday, South Korean business tycoon and chairman of SK Group conglomerate, Chey Tae-won, will pay a total sum  of $1bn in cash as divorce settlement to his ex-wife, Roh So-young, the daughter of former South Korean President Roh Tae-woo.

The ruling according to BBC, was made nearly a decade after Chey Tae-won’s 35-year-marriage crashed as a result of his infidelity and the birth of a child with his mistress.

However, Chey’s lawyers who disclosed that the judgement would be appealed, claimed the court’s ruling was biased as it was made  based on Roh’s side of the story.

The Seoul High Court’s award of 1.38 trillion won ($1bn) to Roh So-young marks a substantial increase from the 66.5 billion won settlement initially ruled by a lower court in 2022.

The ruling said, “It was reasonable to rule that, as his wife, Roh played a role in increasing the value of SK Group and Chey’s business activity.”

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The court estimated Chey Tae-won’s wealth to be approximately 4 trillion won, and accordingly, Roh So-young, with whom he has three children, is entitled to around 35% of that amount.

While acknowledging Roh So-young’s contributions, the court said she had facilitated the growth of Chey Tae-won’s business by helping to resolve regulatory issues, and additionally, her father, former President Roh Tae-woo, had provided influential support, serving as a “protective shield” for Chey Jong-hyon, the former chairman of SK Group, thereby contributing to the company’s success.

The judgment highlighted that Chey, 63, had not shown any remorse “for his foul behaviour in the course of the trial… nor respect for monogamy.”

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The court added that it factored in Roh So-young’s emotional pain and distress resulting from Chey Tae-won’s infidelity when determining the increased settlement amount.

In their argument, Chey’s legal team contended that his ex-wife’s political connections had actually hindered his business endeavours rather than benefiting them.

Despite the contentious nature of the trial, shares in SK Inc, one of the world’s largest semiconductor manufacturers with interests in telecoms, chemicals, and energy, surged by 9% following the ruling.



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Three Men Take American Airline To Court Over Alleged Body Odour



By John Michael Ojo

Following their ill-treatment earlier in the year, three men alleging that they were discriminated against by a crew member over their body odour, have sued American airlines.

This was disclosed by American television NBCDFW, stating that the men who did not know each other, had boarded Flight 832 at Phoenix Airport to New York JFX.

It added that the men, who were all seated in the plane, were picked from their different positions and sent out following a complaint made by a white male flight attendant over their “offensive body odour.”

It also revealed that the men were eventually made to board the aircraft, when all efforts to have them board an alternative flight proved abortive after waiting over a period of an hour.

The lawsuit claims: “They had to re-board the plane and endure the stares of the largely white passengers who viewed them as the cause of the substantial delay.

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“They suffered during the entire flight home, and the entire incident was traumatic, upsetting, scary, humiliating, and degrading.”

One of the victims, Emmanuel Jean Joseph said that he “knew that as soon as I got on that plane, a sea of white faces were going to be looking at me and blaming me for their late flight of an hour.”

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