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Published 5th February 1999

Vol 40 No 3

South Africa

Men of honour

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures
Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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For seven years Italian and American police have been trying to extradite Vito Palazzolo and now they may be too late

The net is finally closing around convicted money launderer and Cape Town bon viveur, Vito Roberto Palazzolo. He is wanted by the Italian police on charges (which he emphatically denies) of membership of the Sicilian mafia, drug trafficking and money laundering. Indeed an investigating judge in Sicily alleges that Palazzolo manages the investment portfolio of Salvatore 'Toto' Riina, the gaoled head of the notorious Corleone clan and still the 'boss of bosses'. Over the past seven years Italian attempts to extradite him from South Africa, backed by the United States, have failed, although new South African legislation makes membership of criminal gangs, including the mafia, an extraditable offence. The Palazzolo affair is now opening up mysterious facets of South Africa's police and security services, with implications for some political figures too.

Who's counting?

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Talks between Abuja and the IMF reveal an even grimmer economic picture this year

Nigeria's politicians, soldiers, bankers, farmers, taxi drivers and creditors all know that the economy is weaker than at any time since Independence in 1960. Indeed, the figures a...

All about power

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Jonas Savimbi's aims are clear but they are unlikely to prevail

What does Jonas Savimbi's União Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola hope to gain from the return to all-out war? Power, of course. Savimbi's specific aim is ...

The President's men

A new cabinet is formed to tackle the war against UNITA and the collapsing economy

Two main imperatives drove the formation of President José Eduardo dos Santos' war cabinet, announced on 30 January: the need to find scapegoats for Angola's appalling econo...

Pushing out patronage

Politicians are divided over reforms that cut into the ruling party's largesse

Ivorians are warming up for two battles this year. The first is between reformers, backed by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, who want to decommission the countr...


Copper crunch

The timing could hardly have been worse. As the world price of copper plummets, the Zambian government has at last moved decisively towards selling off its one big asset, the best ...

Treaty testing

As regional diplomats struggled to negotiate a truce on 3 February, the French-backed peacekeeping initiative, Renforcement des Capacités Africaines en Maintien de la Paix ...