Thursday, June 24, 2021

April fire concluded to have been intentionally started

 Fire that tore across parts of Cape Town in April has concluded that the blaze was intentionally started accordinf to an independent probe.

SANParks appointed Enviro Wildfire Services to investigate the cause of the blaze.

Independent investigator Rob Erasmus said that his investigation led to the fact that the fire did not start naturally or accidentally. Using photos from social media he was able to reconstruct the early stages of the fire.

These included pictures taken by hikers, mountain bikers, someone who was on a flight around the Cape Peninsula and footage from CCTV cameras.

Erasmus said that footage showed a vehicle pulling off onto the shoulder of the road, it proceeded to drive very slowly until it reached a point close to where the fire had originated.

unfortunately the authorities could not determine the vehicle's registration number. The City of Cape Town is now looking at offering a reward in exchange for information that could lead to an arrest.


by Everngelista Muza

Denosa states vaccination rollout plan for teachers was poorly planned

The Democratic Nursing Organisation (Denosa) says the vaccination programme rollout has been poorly planned and implemented.

The organisation stated there are long queues that end up in stampedes exposing people to COVID-19 infections. Yesterday in Bloeamfontein the situation turned into chaotic scenes with hundreds of teachers queuing outside the Gonyane Primary school hall without observing social distancing.

The Departments of Education and Health only aimed to vaccinate 500 teachers on the first day and as the day progressed, things got out of control as teachers pushed one another to be let inside the school hall.

Some of the teachers complained that there was no proper planning for the vaccination process. Denosa Acting General Secretary Cassim Lekhoathi says the shortage of personnel at vaccination sites hampers government’s vaccination 


by Everngelista Muza

Seven people gunned down in Gugulethu

 

Photo cred: VUT Research


On Wednesday, seven people were gunned down in NY79, Gugulethu near Cape Town. Five people died on the scene and two others in hospital.

It is reported that the shooting happened during a traditional ceremony. The Gugulethu Development Forum (GDF) has called for immediate intervention by the Minister of Police, Bheki Cele, to look into killings in the area.

The motive for the shooting incident is not yet known. No arrests have been made at this stage. 


BY: Chwayita Hlangwana

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Increase in theft of beehives

There’s been an increase in the theft of beehives in South Africa.

An average hive will cost you between R1 500 to R3 000 each.

The SA Bee Industry Organisation (Sabio) has called for action to be taken to stop the thievery.

According to Sabio chairperson Adriaan Du Toit, the latest incident will rank as one of the most stinging factors facing the SA beekeeper, including honey fraud, beehive sabotage through demolition.

“Though theft and vandalism are always on the mind of any beekeeper, we were all shocked by images of the actual damage and trauma which went viral on local and international social media, caused most likely by organised crime and deliberate action,” Du Toit said.

On the issue of theft and vandalism, Du Toit said the board has decided to tackle this by involving its association, organised agriculture structures and the stock theft units of both the Department of Agriculture, land reform and rural development and the South African Police Services. It has given itself two weeks to come up with solutions.

The Beekeeper Cape Town said more than 40 missing hives had been stolen of a secure property on Thursday.

Incidents of beehive theft have been reported in Cape Town, Pierre and Wellington.

 




Done By: Mitchum George

Mourners targeted at Eastern Cape gravesite

Mourners and those who visit the grave sites of their dearly departed are warned to be extra cautious and vigilant of their surroundings.

This as there has been an increase in robberies at the Forest Hills cemetery, Eastern Cape.

Since April, at least five robberies occurred at the cemetery.

‘’The robbers threaten the victims with knives and rob them of their personal belongings. In some cases, they request for the vehicle keys and then steal whatever is in the vehicle. The robberies usually occur at any time during the day. The suspects are usually in a group between four and eight,’’ said the police’s Priscilla Naidu.

Mourners are advised not to visit grave sites alone. Visitors are also advised not to wear expensive jewellery and carry valuable items on their visits.

The police spokesperson advised that if suspicious people are seen approaching you while at a grave site, try and make a hasty retreat or attract attention of other people if they are around.

 

Done by: Mitchum George

Monday, June 21, 2021

North West educator assaulted by parent

The North West Education Department has condemned an incident, whereby a teacher was allegedly assaulted inside a Grade 6 classroom by a parent.

In a video gone viral on social media, the teacher is seen standing in the doorway of a classroom trying to speak to the parent, who can be heard speaking in Setswana and is waving her finger.

In the video, the parent can been seen smacking the teacher in the face.

‘’A 53-year-old female teacher was allegedly assaulted inside a Grade 6 classroom by a parent at Phera Primary School in Tsetse Village near Mafikeng on Monday, June 15, 2021,’’ said the department in a statement.

The department said that the teacher who has over 10 years teaching experience was allegedly assaulted by a mother who has two children in Grade 4 and R respectively at the school. It is alleged the parent complained last week Thursday on why the teacher turned back her children for late coming.

‘’Upon investigation the department found that the two learners never arrived at school as their names did not appear on the screeners register on the said day.’’

MEC Mmaphefo Matsemela has condemned the parent’s behaviour.

“On behalf of the department I would like to strongly condemn the alleged incident against one of our teachers. I am perturbed by the incident and the actions of this specific parent. Our teachers are beacons of hope and should be treated as such for their huge revolutionary role they play in educating our society.’’

“As a department we plead with parents to protect teachers and not to cause any harm on them. Teachers should be treated as a scarce commodity which needs to be protected by the entire society”, added Matsemela.

The teacher has opened a case of assault against the parent.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Man dies after boat capsizes in Kommetjie

A man died after a boat capsized at Soetwater, Cape Town on Saturday.

‘’At 12h32, Saturday, 19 June, NSRI Kommetjie duty crew were activated following reports of a RHIB (Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat) capsized at Soetwater with reportedly 5 local fishermen onboard.

NSRI Hout Bay were placed on alert.," National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Kommetjie station commander Johnathan Bakker said.

Four of the crew members were found to be suffering from hypothermia and one crew member was unresponsive.

"CPR efforts were commenced on the one man. Despite extensive efforts to resuscitate the man, sadly he was declared deceased on the scene by paramedics," Bakker said.

The rest of the fishermen were treated on the scene for hypothermia.

NSRI Kommetjie crew members recovered the capsized boat.

The body of the deceased man was taken into the care of WC Government Health Forensic Pathology Services and Police have opened an inquest docket.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Diamond rush expected to finally calm down

 THE diamond rush expected to now settle following new findings.

The illegal mining of diamonds began soon after Dwayne Maskutule, a herd boy who was in search of livestock, stumbled across a stone that resembled a diamond. Thousands of people from the province and beyond travelled to KwaHlathi with the aim of getting their hands on the so-called diamonds.

The Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs MEC Ravi Pillay said In fact, what has been discovered are quartz crystals that are common across the Karoo Supergroup with extensional fracture planes within and along the contact of Karoo dolerite sill.

Pillay said that KwaHlathi, a rural area in Ladysmith, was located in an area that was not a diamond zone. He stated that this was confirmed by visual, geological and chemical analyses that were conducted.

The quartz crystals found in the area were worth way less than what diamonds are worth though their actual worth was yet to be determined.

Peggy Nkonyeni, MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison urged people to withdraw from further illegal mining activities following the scientific finding that the stones mined were not diamonds.


by Everngelista Muza

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga has announced the start of the vaccine rollout

On Saturday The Basic Education Department said it is prepared to vaccinate thousands of staff by the end of the second school term.

According to Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga, the vaccine rollout will start on Wednesday, 23 June 20, 2021 and continue till the 8th July 2021.

Last week Thursday, the country received Johnson & Johnson vaccines. The department said that they have enough time to rollout the vaccine as the doses only expires on the 8th of August.

On Saturday, the Basic Education Department announced that 582,000 education staff are ready to be vaccinated over a 10-to-14-day period.

These include independent school teachers and adults working in public, admin, cleaners, food handlers and officials working in the district, provincial and national offices.

By Danielle Mentoor

 

 

 

 

 

Friday, June 18, 2021

Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development fails to participate in today’s Webinar

 Chairperson of the Western Cape Standing Committee on Human Settlements, Matlhodi Maseko, says it is unfortunate that the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development did not participate in a webinar today to update them on matters pertaining to the District Six Restitution Projects.

On Thursday, Minister Thoko Didiza announced that they will today (Friday) begin the administrative process of allocating 108 claimants their housing units.

She said the process of the claimants returning to the area will take place between 24 June and 16 July.

Maseko said that the problem is that illegal occupiers have moved onto land in the area.

And that there is a land invasion that is happening in the land parcel of the District Six land restitution site. And the responsibility now is with the city, the cost is with the city. And they have to see how they are going to move forward in this issue.

 

Done By Lizeka Tsotetsi

Drain net implementation in Gaansbaai preventing Ocean pollution

Hermanus’ Overstrand Municipality is working on minimising the amount of waste the reaches the ocean by implementing storm drain catchment nets.

The Overstrand Municipality is working in partnership with Marine Dynamics and the Dyker Island Conservation Trust, after being inspired by a project done in Australia.

The project entails placing large nets over storm water drain outlets that will catch the waste before it reaches the ocean. Anton Bredell, the minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning has praised the work being done.



The net at Gansbaai harbour is regularly monitored to assess the waste caught. Following 17 analysed net counts a total of 141.55 kg of waste was collected.

The statistics were frightening with cigarette filters being a top offending item at 33 875 pieces collected in the one net. This was followed by food wrappers/containers at 12 389 and that included non-recyclable chip packets.

Plastic bottles amounting to 188 and cans at 127 were also prominent items found in the net.

By Danielle Mentoor 

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Third Largest Diamond discovered in Botswana

 

Debswana the Diamond Firm in Botswana has confirmed an amazing discovery of a 1098 carat stone Diamond which has been described as the 3rd largest of it’s kind Globally

It is said to be the biggest stone of gem quality to be recovered in the history of the company, a joint venture between the government and global diamond giant De Beers.

Debswana Managing Director Lynette Armstrong has said that

The rare and extraordinary stone means so much in the context of diamonds and Botswana, and that It brings hope to the nation that is struggling."

The Diamond which was found on the 1st  of June, was shown to President Mokgweetsi Masisi in the Capital Gaborone.

The biggest diamond ever discovered in the world was the 3 106-carat Cullinan, found in South Africa in 1905.

 

Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi


Jabu Mabuza has passed at the age of 63

 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) has announced that Jabu Mabuza  has passed away. Busa said that it was a tragic and devastating loss for business in South Africa.

Mabuza (63), who is the former chair of Eskom, passed away on Wednesday, 16 June 2021 due to covid-19 complications.

His family thanked the country for all their support and condolences and asked for privacy during this difficult time.

Sipho Pityana, Busa president, said that Mabuza became a powerhouse in South Africa’s economy and was a role model to all. Mabuza also occupied several leadership positions in both the corporate and public sectors.

By Danielle Mentoor

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Hijacked learners remain unharmed

 

The learners who were hijacked in Cape Town is confirmed to be unharmed. Police officers responded to the incident at corner of Spine Road and N2 highway yesterday.

When they arrived at the scene, they found two armed suspects offloading 17 learners along the N2. The suspects spotted the police’s arrival and fled into the bushes.

Later, the police tracked down one of the men who was identified to be the driver in the operation.

The City of Cape Town's JP Smith: "The vehicle had been hijacked with the schoolchildren on board and the hijackers were attempting to offload the children. When the suspects realised that the officers were approaching, they into the bushes. The law enforcement stabilisation unit members reacted and responded immediately resulting in the apprehension of one of the suspects."

By Danielle Mentoor

Police Officers granted Bail for Bribing Victims Mother

 

Two Officers from Limpopo have been released on R2 000 bail each after being arrested for allegedly facilitating a bribe to make a rape case go away.

The two sergeants were investigating a rape case in which a nine-year-old child was allegedly raped by a 23-year-old neighbor.

They allegedly demanded money from the suspect’s mother to pay the victim’s mother in order for them not to register the rape case

According to reports on the28 May 2021, the two suspects were working together when they called the mother of the suspect in the rape case to pay R8 000 in cash to the victim's mother in exchange for the rape case not to be registered

Limpopo police spokesman Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo confirmed in a statement that Netshiendeulu Mudzhiwa Adolphus and Mafelatshuma Allen Makananisa, both based at the Tshilwavhusiku station in Vhembe district, appeared before the Polokwane organized crimes court on Monday on charges of corruption and defeating the ends of justice.

 

Done By Lizeka Tsotetsi


Monday, June 14, 2021

Woman arrested for allegedly killing her daughter

 A woman in Mpumalanga has been arrested for the murder of her baby daughter.

The mother of the baby girl, who was three months old, went to the child’s father on Friday evening for a visit at the farm where he worked.

According to the police, the father refused to let the mother and daughter into his home and the mother then threatened to kill the baby. The situation got out of hand, and she allegedly threw the baby on the floor.

Sadly, the little girl died by the time the paramedics arrived at the scene.

The mother is expected to appear in court tomorrow.

By Danielle Mentoor

The Huguenot Tunnel closure for Maintenance

 


Night time Closure has been implemented for the Huguenot Tunnel for maintenance Purposes

SANRAL Western Region Manager Randall Cable, has said that the tunnel would thus be closed to traffic, from 10pm to 6am, Monday to Thursday. meaning that the tunnel will still be open during the daytime Monday to Thursday and fully open 24 hours a day from Friday to Sunday, for all road users

 Cable added that SANRAL has been engaging stakeholders from local and provincial government, the road freight industry, the agricultural sector, SANTACO and the local business community on how the closures will impact their businesses, so that they are able to make adjustments to their travel times or use any of the various alternative routes. and that much of the required maintenance work has been completed under live traffic conditions, to ensure minimal inconvenience to road users.


Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Malan High School under investigation following Queerphioa behavior by studens and staff

Western Cape education MEC Debbie Schäfer, confirmed an investigation was under way into allegations of queerphobia and discrimination at DF Malan High School.

The Cape Town high school in Belleville face backlash over a decision to ban pupils from showing solidarity with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.

A group of learners were verbally abused last week when they gathered during break to mark the first week of International Pride Month. When the pupils reported the abuse to the headmaster, they were told not to repeat any provocative behavior, and all further pride action was banned.

The school has been accused of infringing upon the rights of learners from the LGBTQI+ community following the incident as the pupils ended up being subjected to discrimination by staff and pupils at the school.

A parent of one of the affected pupils also spoke out this week, slamming the school for targeting the pride pupils rather than those who targeted them.




By Everngelista Muza

Stage 3 load shedding for Thursday; Stage 2 if City-supplied

Stage 3 load shedding will end at 10p.m Thursday night.

Eskom implemented the latest rolling blackouts since 8a.m

‘’Although there has been a slight improvement in generation performance today (Wednesday), we have unfortunately had further breakdowns at Kusile, Matla and Tutuka Power Stations,’’ it said in a statement.

It added that its emergency generation reserves, have depleted.

It further said that Stage 2 loadshedding will then proceed throughout the night.

The utility upped the rolling blackouts to stage 4 on Wednesday, citing further breakdowns and a need to preserve emergency generation capacity.

If your electricity is supplied by the City of Cape Town, then you will only load shed on Stage 2 until 5p.m

The municipality has enough generation capacity to ‘’protect’’ customers from one stage of Eskom’s load shedding.

The City says it will thereafter move to Stage 3 for 2 hours, before reverting back to Stage 2 between 7-10p.m


INFO: City of Cape Town

Done By: Mitchum George

IEC launches 2021 Municipal Elections

The Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) officially launched the 2021 Municipal Elections on Wednesday, unveiling a mobilisation campaign aimed at encouraging eligible voters to register and participate in the 27 October elections.

The theme: “Every Voice Together”.

The launch was held at an event at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg attended by key stakeholders including leaders of political parties, government officials, members of the diplomatic corps and the media.

Eligible voters are urged to register between 17-18 July 2021. Those already registered are urged to check and update their registration details.

A major focus of the campaign will be on encouraging young and first-time voters to register and vote in a bid to boost voter registration numbers ahead of the closing of the voters’ roll on proclamation by the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs expected in early August.

“Currently the voters’ roll has 25.75 million registered voters. Based on population estimates from Statistics South Africa it is estimated that some 15 million eligible voters remain unregistered. Of these, about 60 percent are under the age of 30,” said Chief Electoral Officer Mr Sy Mamabolo.

“This is not necessarily a reflection of so-called ‘apathy’ by young people. Young voters have had fewer opportunities to register than older voters – with millions only qualifying for registration over the past 24 months since the last major voter registration drive.,’’ he added.

IEC Chairperson, Glen Mashinini, said the elections were an opportunity for a new generation of South Africans to take up the mantel of supporting democracy from previous generations.

“Our appeal to the current generation of freedom-loving South Africans is to use the Municipal Elections to leave an indelible footprint for posterity: A legacy of continuing an unbroken record of adhering to the dictates of our Constitution and staying the course on our democratic journey.’’

 As part of the launch of elections, the Electoral Commission Contact Centre has also been re-activated on 0800 11 8000 and is operational weekdays from 8am to 5pm. It provides assistance to callers in all official languages and is also available to respond to queries submitted on Twitter (@IECSouthAfrica), Facebook (IECSouthAfrica), email (info@elections.org.za) and webchat at www.elections.org.za.

 

 





Done By: Mitchum George

Cape police probe double murder case in Mfuleni

Cape Town police are probing a double murder case after two men were shot and killed in Mfuleni on Tuesday. One of those was an off-duty police officer.

Police spokesperson Andrè Traut said the incident happened after 4p.m and that the victims’ bodies were discovered in a silver Ford Focus.

“The victims’ bodies were discovered in a silver Ford Focus. One of the victims is a 33-year-old police officer stationed at Philippi East and was off duty at the time of the incident,” said Traut.

Anyone with information are kindly requested to contact Crime Stop at 08600 10111.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

HAWKS arrests 7 suspects for selling illegal electricity

Seven men accused of buying and reselling prepaid electricity to people, have been arrested.

According to Hawks’ spokesperson, Philani Nkwalase, the suspects were members of a syndicate operating in groups countrywide generating income of approximately R150 000 to R250 000 per day from illicit sales of electricity.

The seven were arrested following a project based investigation that ensued in May last year in Bloemfontein.

‘’They are highly organized, well-equipped, closely networked and are difficult to track due to the fact that these machines do not transact on a network or at a single place, but are constantly roving. The suspects were allegedly responsible for selling illegal electricity to pre-paid customers,’’ said Nkwalase.

The project probed the illicit sale of electricity facilitated by illegal vendors who had, in their possession, illegal electricity vending machines.

The suspects, aged between 28 and 67, were arrested at various locations across Gauteng on Wednesday.

‘’During their arrest, one of the suspects allegedly enticed the arresting officers with R100 000 gratification and was additionally charged with corruption. Meanwhile other suspects were allegedly found in possession of illegal firearms as well as ammunition and were additionally charged accordingly.’’

Several cell phones, laptops, sim cards, total cash amount of R714 800, seven luxury vehicles, electricity pre-paid vouchers and transaction records were seized for further investigation.

All the suspects are expected to appear in the Fochville Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

Eskom urges the public to stop buying illegal pre-paid electricity from ghost vendors and to report information regarding electricity theft and fraud, to the Eskom Crime Line number: 0800 11 27 22.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Cape pickets held to reinstate Jeremy Veary

Various Cape Town Community members alongside activists and religious leaders marched to Parliament on Wednesday in support of Major-General Jeremy Vearey.

Veary was recently fired over comments he made on social media. The former police boss faced a disciplinary hearing where it was revealed that he put SAPS into disrepute for allegedly taking swipes at national police commissioner Khehla Sitole on Facebook.

He came under fire for posts he made on the platform, containing “derogatory, offensive, insulting and disrespectful” language towards Sitole.

Community picketed to various police stations, including Mitchell’s Plain, Ravensmead, Bishop Lavis, Elsies River asnd Bonteheuwel.

A memorandum was handed over to parliamentary official, Charles Ford, by the dean of St George’s Cathedral, Rev. Michael Weeder.

 

PICTURE: Daily Maverick

Done By: Mitchum George

Suspect arrested for murder of 18-year-old Khayelitsha woman

The Western Cape’s Community Safety MEC, Albert Fritz will visit the family of Sinovuyo Magatya on Thursday.

18-year-old Magatya from Khayelitsha disappeared after leaving a shebeen with a friend, last week. Her body was discovered in Makhaza.

A 30-year-old suspect was arrested in connection with her murder.

‘’The suspect initially denied any knowledge or involvement and actually accompanied the family to people he said he saw Sinovuyo leave the shebeen with in Makhaza. After Sinovuyo’s cellphone was found at the suspect’s home, police went back and arrested him, whereupon they discovered a bloody towel. Sinovuyo’s body was then found, hours later, in an abandoned shack also belonging to the suspect.’’

Furthermore, Magatya’s cellphone was found at the suspect’s home, after police returned to the suspects residence and arrested him, where upon they discovered a towel covered in blood.

MEC Fritz condemned the incident.

“I want to condemn the actions of the people who committed these heinous acts in the strongest possible terms. It is people like this, people who carry out these gruesome acts of gender-based violence, who rob our women of living out their freedom. It is an attack on humanity, and we cannot accept it. We will not accept this.”

‘’…every time a young person such as Sinovuyo is killed so senselessly and in such a depraved way, it affects me because I see a young person, full of life and energy, with so much to offer in building our society, taken away from us. A flame is extinguished,’’ Fritz added.

 

Done By: Mitchum George


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