Negotiations between Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker are “going good” as they attempt to finalise a bumper unification fight for Cardiff on March 31, according to reports.
New Zealander Parker, the WBO heavy world champion, is set to meet the British boxing star and WBA and IBF title holder at the Principality Stadium in the Welsh capital.
And the 25-year-old Parker has stated that talks are at an advanced stage.
Speaking to ESPN, he said, “I think the Joshua fight can go ahead early next year when both teams are locked in and happy.
“When we can find a free date, a time in March, then we can definitely make it happen.
“Negotiations are going good. I think we’re close to locking something in. They’re stuck at 30 per cent (of the split), we’re stuck at 35 so it’s just finding the middle ground.
“We’ll take 35 percent which means Joshua will take 65, which is nearly double me, so I think that’s a fair deal because he’s the bigger draw card and he’s has two belts, and I have one.
“I think that’s reasonable and fair.
“I think we’re very close. I’m excited as it’s a chance to showcase my skills in the UK more.”
Parker and his camp are confident that they can cause a huge upset against the undefeated English golden boy once they finally get inside the ring.
EFF demands the sacking of South Africa’s finance minister Nene.
South Africa’s political players are headed for a collision course over the fate of the finance minister, who the Treasury on Tuesday said is traveling to Indonesia for an International Monetary Fund (IMF) meeting.
Pressure has been piling on finance minister Nhlanhla Nene to resign, following his disclosure to the state-capture inquiry commission, that he had met the Gupta brothers between 2010 and 2013.
The Business Day on Monday reported that Nene had asked president Cyril Ramaphosa to relieve him of his duties as finance minister.
Ramaphosa’s office responded and said they were not aware of Nene’s request.
And on Tuesday, Treasury spokesman Jabulani Sikhakhane said the finance minister was expected to arrive in Indonesia on Wednesday.
Nene is also expected to read the mid-term budget later this month.
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The news that Nene is continuing with his duties is likely to anger opposition supporters including the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), whose leader, Julius Malema on Monday asked Ramaphosa to sack Nene.
In a written letter to Ramaphosa, Malema argued that the country, whose economy is in recession, had very serious challenges that needed a credible finance minister to address them.
‘‘Public servants at all spheres and levels of government will have no obligation to responsibly manage state fiscal resources under a compromised minister of finance,’‘ Malema said.
He then added that that Nene can no longer inspire much needed confidence to revive the economy.
‘‘The Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS)‚ which is supposed to be a statement to build confidence amongst all important economic role players‚ cannot‚ and should not‚ be delivered by a minister who was part of the Gupta criminal syndicate.”
For the EFF, Nene’s position as finance minister is no longer tenable and they are determined to win what they are now calling a battle.
Malema had threatened on Sunday that streets protests might be organised to demand for the removal of Nene as finance minister.
The Gupta brothers are accused of using their friendship with former president Jacob Zuma to influence government decisions including unfairly winning state contrcats.
Both Zuma and the Guptas have denied any wrongdoing.
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South Africa: Ex-minister reveals Zuma’s Gupta deals.
South Africa’s Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene said on Wednesday he was fired by former president Jacob Zuma for refusing to approve contracts that would financially benefit the Gupta family, friends of Zuma accused of corruption.