Alex Duval Smith

Alex Duval Smith is a freelance foreign correspondent based in South Africa

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Painted pebbles with messages placed outside Mr Mandela’s home

Mandela leaves hospital after 'successful' surgery

South Africa's ex- president Nelson Mandela was discharged from hospital yesterday after exploratory keyhole surgery for a long-standing abdominal complaint.

Painted pebbles with messages placed outside Mr Mandela’s home

Mandela 'comfortable at home' after surgery

Nelson Mandela was discharged from hospital yesterday after exploratory keyhole surgery for a long-standing abdominal complaint.

'If you are a husband and you see your wife buying underwear from the flea market, you have failed,' says Zimbabwe's Finance Minister,Tendai Biti

Zimbabwe minister gets his knickers in a twist over undergarment imports

Zimbabwe has banned the import and sale of second-hand underwear after the Finance Minister said women should not suffer the indignity of wearing hand-me-down lingerie.

Mandla Mandela with his grandfather Nelson Mandela

Mandela missing as disunity marks ANC's centenary party

The African National Congress stumbled into its second century yesterday with little rejoicing, amid a clampdown on speeches and after international dignitaries stayed away from a chaotic series of commemorative events.

Party atmosphere at Bloemfontain’s Free State Stadium for the ANC’s 100th anniversary

Disunity marks ANC centenary celebrations

The African National Congress stumbled into its second century yesterday with little rejoicing, amid a clampdown on speeches and after international dignitaries stayed away from a chaotic series of commemorative events.

Nelson Mandela leaves court in Pretoria during the first treason trial in 1958

100 not out – but is the ANC ailing?

Against all odds, the party of Mandela has reached an historic milestone. But despite its achievements, many South Africans say it has not done enough to help the poor. Alex Duval Smith reports from Mangaung

Mandla Mandela was married at his palace on Christmas Eve

Mandela's heir defies court order (and the other Mrs Mandela) to marry again

Clan chief wed in traditional ceremony says estranged partner is delaying divorce

Gabon's President Ali Bongo

Bongo and Bell Pottinger can't stir voters in Gabon

Rebranding effort abroad – but elections leave country unmoved

Ojukwu addresses the media in 1967 at the start of the disastrous war

Emeka Ojukwu: Soldier who led his people into the war of Biafran independence

The image so often associated with Africa – a child with stick-thin limbs and swollen belly – dates back to the first televised famine, the Biafran war. The man who understood the power of that image was an Oxford-educated Nigerian soldier, Emeka Ojukwu.

President Paul Kagame previously assured the public he would step down after two terms

Kagame puts down marker for third term

Pro-democracy activists fear that Rwandan strongman plans to extend his term in office

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Day In a Page

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If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
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How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
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Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past