February 2 — Palestinians protested from Sunday, a day after leader Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas announced a cut of all ties with Israel and the US, including security co-operation, in response to Washington’s controversial Middle East peace plan that is seen as favouring Israel. The Arab League also  rejected US President Donald Trump’s plan at the weekend.

A Palestinian hurls stones at Israeli troops during a protest against the US President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, in Hebron, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Picture: REUTERS/MUSSA QAWASMA
A Palestinian hurls stones at Israeli troops during a protest against the US President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, in Hebron, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Picture: REUTERS/MUSSA QAWASMA

February 2 — Novak Djokovic endured a fierce challenge to his Melbourne Park reign before overhauling Dominic Thiem 6-4 4-6 2-6 6-3 6-4 on Sunday to clinch an eighth Australian Open crown and reclaim the world No 1 ranking.

Novak Djokovic of Serbia poses with the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup after winning the men's singles final against Dominic Thiem of Austria at the Australian Open at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia, February 2 2020. Picture: GETTY IMAGES/DANIEL POCKETT
Novak Djokovic of Serbia poses with the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup after winning the men's singles final against Dominic Thiem of Austria at the Australian Open at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia, February 2 2020. Picture: GETTY IMAGES/DANIEL POCKETT

February 3 — Malawi’s Constitutional Court on Monday annulled the May 2019 presidential vote that declared Peter Mutharika the  winner and ordered a re-run after an application from opposition parties citing irregularities.

Constitutional Court justice Ivy Kamanga, centre, arrives with a military escort at the Lilongwe High Court in Lilongwe, Malawi, February 3 2020. Picture: AFP/AMOS GUMULIRA
Constitutional Court justice Ivy Kamanga, centre, arrives with a military escort at the Lilongwe High Court in Lilongwe, Malawi, February 3 2020. Picture: AFP/AMOS GUMULIRA

February 3 − Minister Gwede Mantashe gave off good energy at this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba. The mineral resources & energy minister said the government was working on new ways to ensure reliable energy for the country. Eskom has caused great uncertainty for investors looking to do business with the country. News of a fresh energy mix also comes at a good time, Eskom will be decommissioning three coal-fired power plants in the next four years.

Mineral resources & energy minister Gwede Mantashe speaks at the 2020 Investing in African Mining Indaba conference. Picture: REUTERS/MIKE HUTCHINGS
Mineral resources & energy minister Gwede Mantashe speaks at the 2020 Investing in African Mining Indaba conference. Picture: REUTERS/MIKE HUTCHINGS

February 4 — President Donald Trump’s state of the union address became a shocking display of US divisions on Tuesday with Democrats protesting the Republican’s boasts before their leader, Nancy Pelosi, ripped up her copy of the speech on live television. The House speaker’s gesture encapsulated the seething atmosphere in the Capitol throughout Trump’s one hour and 18 minutes speech. Trump, who did not mention his impeachment trial in his address, had refused to shake her hand earlier. Much of Trump’s speech was taken up with proclaiming his successful economic policies and the “America first” outlook.

US Vice-President Mike Pence claps as Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi rips up a copy of US President Donald Trump’s speech after he delivers the state of the union address at the US Capitol in Washington, DC on February 4 2020. Picture: AFP/MANDEL NGAN
US Vice-President Mike Pence claps as Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi rips up a copy of US President Donald Trump’s speech after he delivers the state of the union address at the US Capitol in Washington, DC on February 4 2020. Picture: AFP/MANDEL NGAN

February 4 — Shares of Tesla surged 20% on Tuesday to hit $940, extending a stunning rally that has more than doubled the company’s market value since the start of 2020 as more investors bet on CEO Elon Musk’s EV vision.  Tesla’s rise valued the company at about $170bn, nearly double the combined market capitalisation of General Motors and Ford Motor.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk poses with Tesla China-made Model 3 vehicle owners onstage during a delivery event at its Shanghai factory in China. Picture: REUTERS/ALY SONG
Tesla CEO Elon Musk poses with Tesla China-made Model 3 vehicle owners onstage during a delivery event at its Shanghai factory in China. Picture: REUTERS/ALY SONG

February 5 — President Donald Trump was acquitted on Wednesday in his US Senate impeachment trial, saved by fellow Republicans who rallied to protect him nine months before he asks voters in a deeply divided America to give him a second White House term. Trump was acquitted largely along party lines on two articles of impeachment: abuse of power and obstructing Congress.

A protester waves a US national flag upside down, in a sign of distress, outside the Capitol in Washington, DC, February 5 2020. Picture: AFP/ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS
A protester waves a US national flag upside down, in a sign of distress, outside the Capitol in Washington, DC, February 5 2020. Picture: AFP/ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS

February 6 — German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday during a two-day official visit to SA that German businesses are very interested in investing in SA, but “want to see good conditions put in place”. These included less bureaucracy and “legal certainty”.  Areas of co-operation that the two countries are discussing include energy. Merkel’s visit comes as the country faces rolling power cuts by struggling power utility Eskom, which is weighing on business and investor confidence.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Cyril Ramaphosa address a joint press conference during her official visit at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, February 6 2020. Picture: PHILL MAGAKOE
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Cyril Ramaphosa address a joint press conference during her official visit at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, February 6 2020. Picture: PHILL MAGAKOE

February 6 — SAA’s wings were clipped this week by business rescue practitioners. The ailing national carrier has been forced to cut some international and national routes to stay afloat. The rescue practitioners also announced that there will be retrenchments. Not long ago unions representing workers at SAA claimed a small win when they negotiated a salary increase.

Picture: SUPPLIED
Picture: SUPPLIED