The Eyewitness News Breakfast Brief

Eyewitness News previews a selection of the news that you will find on the website today.

Picture: Engin Akyurt/Pixabay

On this morning, while the nation waits to hear how the government plans to deal with the issue of mandatory vaccines against COVID-19, more leaders in medicine and business say this should be urgently considered. The emergence of the Omicron variant has made the calls even louder because of its rapid transmissibly. Business, labour and community partners have submitted proposals for mandatory jabs to the National Economic Development and Labour Council, and last Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said that he would communicate government’s decision in a week.

The legal battle to halt oil giant Shell’s seismic survey off South Africa’s wild coast is not over. On Friday, environmental campaigners lost their bid in the Makhanda High Court to urgently interdict the survey. And on Sunday, dozens of protests were held across the country's shorelines to raise awareness around the harm the activity may have.

Eskom is hopeful it will be able to keep the lights on this week after a sudden round of load shedding over the weekend. The utility put the nation on stage two on Saturday, but it said it was expecting around 4,100 megawatts of generation capacity to return to service by Monday evening.

Four truck drivers will appear in court on Monday in connection with last week's blockade of the N3. Drivers blocked Van Reenen's Pass, causing traffic chaos and almost a full day of gridlock. This is the latest in a series of actions by a group that's angry about foreign nationals being employed by trucking companies at low rates.

Russian President Vladimir Putin will arrive in India on Monday for just his second overseas trip since the pandemic, seeking to bolster military and energy ties with a traditional ally being courted by Washington. In its efforts to address a rising China, Washington has set up the QUAD security dialogue with India, Japan, and Australia, raising concerns in both Beijing and Moscow. India was close to the Soviet Union during the Cold War, a relationship that has endured, with New Delhi calling it a "special and privileged strategic partnership".

Adama Barrow comfortably won a second term in The Gambia's presidential election, with thousands of his supporters celebrating in the streets of Banjul, although his opponents disputed the results announced late Sunday. Barrow, whose assumption of the presidency five years ago ended more than 20 years of dictatorship, garnered more than 53 percent of the vote, according to results released by the electoral commission. His main challenger Ousainou Darboe won 27.7%.

The world's biggest weapons manufacturers largely avoided the economic downturn caused by Covid-19 and recorded a growth in profits last year for the sixth year in a row, according to a report published on Monday. Governments around the world have continued to buy arms during the pandemic and some also passed measures to help their big weapons firms, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). Overall, the 100 top weapons firms saw their profits rise by 1.3% in 2019 to a record $531 billion, despite the global economy contracting by more than three percent.