Jeff Mason is a White House Correspondent for Reuters and the 2016-2017 president of the White House Correspondents’ Association. He was the lead Reuters correspondent for President Barack Obama's 2012 campaign and interviewed the president at the White House in 2015. Jeff has been based in Washington since 2008, when he covered the historic race between Obama, Hillary Clinton and John McCain. Jeff started his career in Frankfurt, Germany, where he covered the airline industry before moving to Brussels, Belgium, where he covered the European Union. He is a Colorado native, proud graduate of Northwestern University and former Fulbright scholar.
Twitter handle: @jeffmason1
There were high hopes that this week’s general election in Zimbabwe would unambiguously mark the end of this southern African nation’s long, painful slide towards totalitarianism and economic implosion under Robert Mugabe. But the violence-marred triumph of ZANU-PF, which has governed Zimbabwe since independence from Britain in 1980, dashes any such optimism.
Under the leadership of the recently ousted President Jacob Zuma, South Africans endured a decade of economic decline, political uncertainty, and an increasingly rancorous and racially charged public discourse. But the “new dawn” proclaimed by his genial successor, Cyril Ramaphosa, has a thunderous cloud hanging over it.
Unless something miraculous happens, the city of Cape Town, an iconic international tourism destination and South Africa’s second economic hub, will run out of drinking water in a matter of weeks.
After a bruising battle that engaged ordinary South Africans in a manner reminiscent of the heady combination of fear and hope that galvanized the country after Nelson Mandela was released from 27 years of incarceration in 1990, Mandela's ruling African National Congress party has chosen a new leader to try to lift the country’s veil of sleaze.
The sight of a civilian populace wildly cheering soldiers clinging to a tank is the standard fare of coups d’état. In Africa, which has had a troubling tradition of the military overthrowing civilian administrations, it’s a jubilation that historically has rarely lasted for long, with the new rulers soon proving to be at least as venal and oppressive as those they have replaced.