Friday, May 22, 2020

Delay in Cape Town refuse collection


The City of Cape Town says residents who live in areas serviced by the Collections Depots in Mitchell's Plain and Woodstock can expect delays in their refuse collection over the coming days.
The Mitchell's Plain Collections Depot closed on Wednesday, 20 May 2020, and the Woodstock Collections Depot was closed since Monday, 18 May.
This comes after two staff members have tested positive at the Woodstock Collections Depot and one staff member has tested positive at the Mitchel'ls Plain Collections Depot.
The City of Cape Town says two of the staff were office-based, and one staff member was part of the refuse removal crew. It added that as a result of the positive cases of COVID-19, the facilities will remain closed for approximately three days until deep cleaning and disinfecting have been completed. This includes disinfecting the facilities and vehicles.
Those who have been in close contact with the staff members are self-quarantining.
The City Council says services in affected areas should be able to resume from next week.
Residents who live in the affected areas are requested to bring their bins back onto their properties, and only bring them out on the next scheduled removal day.
The City says excess refuse that cannot fit in the wheelie bins can be bagged and placed next to the bin for removal.

Done By: Mitchum George

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Some MyCiTi routes suspended due to COVID-19 case


Some MyCiTi services, majority in the inner-city, Hangberg and Hout Bay routes, will not operate on Friday, 22 May 2020. This is to allow for the deep cleaning of buses and facilities after staff members from one of MyCiTi’s vehicle operating companies tested positive for Covid-19.
MyCiti says these measures are being taken to ensure the safety of passengers and staff.
In a statement, the bus company says, the affected staff members are being isolated and receiving treatment and support, working closely with the Department of Health.

The following routes are affected:
• 101 Vredehoek  to Civic (clockwise)
• 104 Oranjezicht to Sea Point
• 105 Sea Point via Fresnaye to Civic
• 108 Hangberg to Adderley
• 109 Hout Bay via Imizamu Yethu to Adderley
• 111 Vredehoek to Civic (anti-clockwise)
• 113 Upper Kloof Street to Waterfront

Services are expected to resume on Saturday, 23 May 2020.

Done By: Mitchum George

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Thursday, May 21, 2020

Singabalapha granted interim interdict for prevention of harassment and removal

A group of people occupying a pavement outside the old age home, Arcadia Place in Observatory, were given fines of R300 & R1000 by Law Enforcement Officers on Wednesday. This comes after they contravened the City's by-laws by having their camps illegally set up on the pavement.
There are 21 tents and shacks, with over 60 occupants including children, women, and elderly people
The group, known as Singabalapha (We Belong Here), occupied the space in September 2019. The home is earmarked for demolition so an upgraded facility can be built in its place.
The City of Cape Town says they attempted to resolve the situation by ‘’affording the occupants an opportunity to remove their belongings and clear the sidewalk, but to no avail.’’
Law Enforcement officers arrested a man who was taken to Woodstock Police Station where he was given an ultimatum that he would be charged and locked up if he did not sign the by-law fines notice. He was eventually released when he signed the notice. Officers also issued 21 fines in terms of the ‘Streets and Public Places By-law’.
Meanwhile, the Cape High Court granted an interim interdict to the Singabalapha Informal Settlement by preventing the City of harassing the occupants and also by not removing the squatters.
The application for a permanent interdict will be held on 3 June 2020.

Done By: Mitchum George


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Saturday, May 09, 2020

Positive COVID-19 taxi driver faces attempted murder charges


A 35-year-old taxi driver is facing attempted murder charges after he was stopped in a vehicle checkpoint on the R61 in Beaufort West on Thursday, transporting about seven passengers. The taxi was enroute to the Eastern Cape. The driver, who had apparently tested positive for the virus after taking a test on 30 April 2020 on the N2 Tsitsikamma roadblock in the Eastern Cape, was duly informed on Wednesday by the testing authority, of the outcome of the test.
Police spokesperson, Novela Potelwa said the driver, seven passengers and three other persons in an accompanying vehicle were transported by police and traffic officials back to Cape Town where they are in a quarantine site.
Potelwa added that the police and traffic officials who escorted the driver and passengers back to Cape Town would undergo the necessary monitoring in line with COVID-19 protocols, as a precaution.
She said the police would ensure the driver is charged and appears before a court of law after consultation with the department of health officials.
Potelwa pleaded with citizens to respect the rules of the law, warning that police officials will track those who break the law and ensure they are brought to book.

Done By: Mitchum George

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Friday, May 08, 2020

Golden Arrow Bus Services extends product validity


Golden Arrow Bus Services are up and running on Friday, 8 May 2020.
This comes as many commuters were stranded yesterday morning after a group of drivers would not allow buses to depart at the Arrowgate depot, as a result of ''rumours and misinformation''.
Later the afternoon, Arrowgate Depot services resumed, but this time services at Phillipi and Southgate depots got interrupted.
In a statement, Golden Arrow says it follows strict and rigorous health and safety protocols, which is enforced by government regulations, and their own risk assessment stategy.
Meanwhile, the bus company have put in place, for commuters, an automatic extension on all products that had unused rides on them as a result of the lockdown.
GABS says the automated fare system will first use the unused rides from the expired product before deducting any journeys from newer products. These new products will also be extended to ensure that passengers do not lose out on what they have purchased as a result of lockdown restrictions, adding that this will be valid until the end of July.



Done By: Mitchum George

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Thursday, April 23, 2020

World Book Day


Thursday, 23 April, is World Book Day.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), first celebrated this day in 1995 to promote reading and publishing around the world.
The Western Cape’s MEC for Education, Debbie Schafer, says that the importance of reading at an early age cannot be overstated. ‘’In fact, without a solid grounding in basic literacy, a child will struggle with all other areas of learning, from introductory to advanced subjects.’’
According to World Population Review, South Africa is ranked 75th in the world, in terms of literacy levels. The 2016 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) found that 78% of our country’s Grade 4 learners could not read for meaning in any language.
With South Africa’s lockdown regulations in effect, libraries are closed, but there are other ways to get hold of a book, such as a magazine for example. As much as it is World Book Day, the aim is for individuals to read, whether it is through the internet, newspaper, recipe or even the back of a grocery item.
I have to agree with MEC Shafer – ‘’the greatest gift a parent can give their child is to inspire in them a love of reading. It is an investment in their education that will make all the difference to their learning when schools are able to reopen.’’

Done By: Mitchum George

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Sunday, April 05, 2020

DA launches online platform to link Government and local manufacturers with PPE


The Democratic Alliance has launched an online service on Sunday, 5 April 2020, to link local manufacturers that produce personal protective equipment, (PPE), ventilators and other much-needed resources, with national and provincial governments in an attempt to resource South Africa’s healthcare facilities with life-saving equipment.
The political party says that several reports not only indicate chronic shortages of PPE, but also other essential resources such as testing and screening equipment across the country for frontline health professionals.
In the spirit of working together with the Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, in the valiant fight against this pandemic, the DA said it wrote to the Health Minister, Zweli Mkhize, last week to make proposals for dealing with, what they call, ‘’catastrophic shortage’’.
The opposition party has called on the Health Ministry to bring together manufacturing companies and give them the brief on the products that are most needed, have these approved by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) and roll them out to provinces and facilities that need it most.
The DA commended government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, but however, said that in order to beat COVID-19, government needs to protect front-line staff in the process. 

Done By: Mitchum George

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Western Cape’s MEC for transport and public works urges all transport operators to follow lockdown regulations.

The Western Cape’s MEC for transport and public works, Bonginkosi Madikizela has urged all transport operators to follow lockdown regulations. The MEC said that social distancing on public transport is critical, in order to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Madikizela says public transport can only be used for rendering essential services, obtaining essential goods or services, seeking medical attention, funeral services and for collecting payment of grants and pensions.
He says that essential services workers using public transport must carry a permit from their employer proving their status.
The transport MEC says public transport will only be available between 5a.m and 10a.m and then again between 4p.m and 8p.m, with one-hour grace periods are provided for minibus taxi services.
He says private institutions or companies may make arrangements for transportation of their essential services workers in line with shifts or schedules. 
   
Outlining the number of passengers on public transport, Madikizela says:
  Bus services, metered taxi and e-hailing services are restricted to carrying 50% of licensed capacity
  Minibus and midi-bus taxi services: Restricted to carrying 70% of licensed capacity, and
• Private vehicle are restricted to carrying 60% of licensed capacity

Madikizela says hand sanitiser must be available at public transport facilities and, ideally, onboard the vehicle, drivers and marshals must wear a mask, and vehicles must be cleaned regularly.  He said that this applies to all bus, minibus taxi, metered taxi and e-hailing services. 

Done By: Mitchum George

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Saturday, April 04, 2020

Dunoon tavern slapped with hefty fine for selling liquor during nationwide lockdown


A tavern's decision to keep selling alcohol, despite it being barred for the nation-wide lockdown, cost it more than half a million rand, yesterday.
The liquor was confiscated in Dunoon, Cape Town, after two men selling alcohol from a car led them to the tavern.
Metro police spokesperson, Ruth Solomons, said that at around 14:30, metro police were tipped off about alcohol being sold from a vehicle in the area.
''Officers soon found the Hyundai Getz and after a short pursuit, cornered the vehicle and arrested two men for failing to remain confined being as per the lockdown regulations.”
Solomons says during questioning, the men gave officers the address of the tavern, and they found a customer buying alcohol from a side door.
''Inside, officers found three individuals who were arrested for selling prohibited goods.''
She added that they also confiscated liquor, two fridges and just over R35 000 in cash.
The suspects were all detained at Milnerton police station.

Done By: Mitchum George

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Friday, April 03, 2020

Man seriously injured following shooting incident in Salt River


A man was left seriously injured yesterday morning after a shooting outside a residence on Bromwell Road in Salt River, Cape Town.
ER24 spokesperson, Russel Meiring, said that paramedics, along with the Life Healthcare, arrived on the scene at 00:28 and were led into the home.
Meiring said the patient was found lying in the one bedroom.                          Medics assessed the man and found that he had sustained a gunshot wound to his neck and was in a serious condition.
He added that the man was treated for his injuries and provided with several advanced life support interventions.
He was then transported to a Provincial Hospital for further care.                    Local authorities were on the scene for further investigations.



Done By: Mitchum George

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Thursday, April 02, 2020

Western Cape now has 393 confirmed cases of COVID-19

The Western Cape premier, Alan Winde, gave the latest figures of the COVID-19 in the province. The premier was joined by the province’s MEC of community safety, Albert Fritz.
As of Thursday, 2 April 2020, the Western Cape has 393 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, 321 of those are from the Cape Town metro.
22 people are in hospital, while 7 people are being treated in ICU.
Meanwhile, MEC Fritz has asked the Western Cape Liquor Authority to invoke the maximum fine of R100 000, should liquor outlets, especially Fritz says big companies distributing alcohol into townships.
Fritz says any person found in possession of liquor will be fined and on top of that the alcohol will be removed, and is non-returnable.
He added that as of 6 o’clock last night and 6 o’clock this morning, 50 people were arrested for violating the lockdown regulations.
The MEC has called on citizens to report bad policing to the police ombudsman. Fritz says 7 City law enforcement officers has been suspended and is pending a legal process.
Winde says last Sunday saw the first case of COVID-19 in Khayelitsha, that person was subsequently moved to an isolation place.
Winde says as of today, Khayelitsha has now two confirmed cases, M/Plain 7, and Klipfontein 9 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.
Winde says these areas specifically is where the governments risk lie, as the virus shows it move among citizens.

Done By: Mitchum George

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Transport Minister amends public transport regulations


Transport Minister, Fikile Mbalula, has amended public transport regulations to accommodate concerns from the taxi industry around regulations implemented to minimise the spread of Covid-19 during a 21-day lockdown
This comes after Mbalula met with the Taxi Council, Santaco, and the National Taxi Alliance on Monday. 
The transport minister said that during the lockdown, transport vehicles must reduce the number of maximum passengers to 70% of the licensed capacity if the passengers are not wearing masks.
According to the Government gazette, a minibus taxi licensed to carry 10 passengers will now be limited to carrying a maximum of seven passengers, while those licensed to carry 15 passengers are limited to 10. A midi-bus permitted to carry a maximum of 22 passengers are now permitted to carry 15, while a vehicle licensed to carry a maximum of four passengers is now allowed to carry two people.
The City of Cape Town says as from Saturday, 4 April 2020, during the morning peak-hour period, minibus drivers will be allowed to travel to the pickup points as from 4a.m, but may only start loading passengers at 5a.m. The municipality says all passengers must be offloaded by 11a.m, and that no passenger may board the taxi after 10a.m.
During the afternoon peak-hour period, passengers can board taxi’s from 4 p.m and must be offloaded by 9p.m, and no passengers may board the taxi after 8p.m.
Furthermore, Golden Arrow Bus Services and MyCiTi bus services says buses are operational with the times that have been gazetted.

Done By: Mitchum George

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