Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Commuter receives over R100 000 in compensation

By Odette Ismail
28 February 2007

A tragic accident that occurred four years ago has resulted in Cape Metrorail handing over R105 000 to a Wellington man after he was injured, and 11 others died in the collision.

Cape Judge President John Hlophe passed down judgement in the Cape High Court yesterday.

Charles Botman is believed to have been travelling on a Metrorail train from Cape Town to Muldersvlei on January 7, 2003. The train collided with a stationary goods vehicle.

Botman sustained injuries to his neck, right shoulder, arm and hand. He told a daily paper that he still experiences pain and is partially disabled.

Botman’s argument is negligence on Metrorail’s part. He claimed R150 000 for general damages and medical expenses. His legal costs have also been covered under the judgement.

Cracking down on crime in central Cape Town

By Tarryn Le Chat
28 February 2007

Cape Town’s Central City Improvement District (CCID) is cracking down on crime ranging from petty theft and riotous behaviour to drug possession. At the weekend, police arrested four armed robbery suspects.

CCID chief operations officer Derek Bock said the biggest success occurred on Saturday morning. CCID security officers on horseback notified their control room that two people had been robbed of R60 000 after leaving the Standard Bank.

A chase by police and CCID ended after the suspects were caught in Somerset Road, Sea Point where members of the public who were robbed identified them.

“We are in direct radio communication with the South African Police Service and this resulted in the suspects being caught within minutes of the robbery,” said Bock.

The police and CCID have adopted a zero-tolerance approach towards crime, however petty an offence may seem.

Woman caught red handed in airport drug bust

By Tando Mfengwana
24 February 2007

A 33-year old woman was arrested yesterday at the Cape Town International Airport for the possession of heroin.

Police spokesperson Captain Elliot Sinyangana said the woman, from Hanover Park, who was profiled for alleged involvement in drug trafficking, arrived on a flight from London.

Police searched her luggage and found 2 kilograms of the drug with a street value of about R2.4 million.

The heroin was wrapped in plastic and hidden in a separate compartment of her suitcase.

She will appear at the Bellville Magistrate Court for the possession of heroin.

Teenage girl's body found in Kwaggaskloof Dam

By Chanel September
28 February 2007

The body of a teenage girl, who reportedly drowned, has been retrieved by police divers.

Veronique February was one of the three girls who drowned in a dam in Rawsonville, an area just outside Cape Town, over the weekend.

The 17-year-old’s body was recovered shortly after nine-o-clock on Monday from the Kwaggaskloof dam. The bodies of Sharlin Williams and Wilmary Scheepres, two ten-year-old girls were also retrieved from the dam.

It is believed that the girls had some difficulty in the water after they disappeared whilst swimming with a group of friends.

Police spokesperson Billy Jones says Sharlin’s body was found on Saturday and Wlimary’s on Sunday.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Kidnapper appears in court while 'miracle baby' and family watches on

By Tarryn Le Chat
27 February 2007

Kidnapped for 11 days, ‘miracle baby’ Yolanda Yoba, sitting on her mothers lap, smiled while many people surrounded her in the Khayelitsha Magistrates Court yesterday.

Nokulunga Yoba, mother to the 11-week-old was glad to have her baby returned to her at the weekend by police.

Yolanda was kidnapped and taken to Mpumalanga where she stayed with the alleged kidnapper, 29-year-old Mandisa Tile.

Tile appeared on the kidnapping charge as the public gallery was crammed. She had on yellow tracksuit top, blue pants and stood fidgeting.

Magistrate Maya Praga had asked Tile whether she would appoint her own attorney or wanted a pro bono legal aid attorney or would conduct her own defence, Tile said she would speak for herself.

The state has opposed bail as they believe Tile is a flight risk as she was arrested in Mpumalanga. She also had outstanding warrant of arrest issued in September 2005.

Tile and another woman gained access to the baby’s home by claiming they were social workers.

The case was postponed to March 16 for a bail application hearing.

New ferry to hit waters soon

By Tando Mfengwana
27 February 2007

The Robben Island Museum has announced that its new ferry will be in the water in two or three month’s time.

The Museum, during November and December, had to turn away thousands of booked visitors due to mechanical failures of their aging ferries.

The Island museum management said that the new 300-seater ferry would be ready at the end of February, or start of March.

Shoni Khangala, spokesperson for the Robben Island museum, said that the building of the ferry should come to an end in a month or two.

The museum has however managed to clear the backlog of bookings.

Khangala is reported as saying that demand during Easter picks up a bit due to domestic tourism. Their peak season is November and February.

Staff and customers held up in robbery

By Chanel September
27 February 2007

Drama unfolded when a shop in Ottery Road, Ottery became the scene of an armed robbery on Monday morning.

It believed that four male suspects entered the shop and held staff and customers at gunpoint, demanding the keys to the safe.

An undisclosed amount of money was taken before the suspects fled into the parking lot. They were confronted by police and several shots were exchanged between police and the suspects.

During the exchange of fire one of the suspects sustained a gunshot wound to the leg and arm. He was taken to a nearby hospital.

Two of the suspects were arrested on the scene and charged with armed robbery and attempted murder. The fourth suspect is still at large.

Anyone with information can contact the Grassy Park police station on (021) 700 3922.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Airlink pilots dispute could be resolved

By Tando Mfengwana
26 February 2007

Trade Union Solidarity may be on the verge of resolving a salary dispute between pilots at the privately owned Airline Company Airlink and their employers.

This comes after Airlink pilots complained of poor working conditions and demanded salary increases and better packages.

At the end of last about 80 percent of the airlines pilots joined Solidarity, after failed attempts to negotiate with employers.

According to Solidarity spokesperson Jaco Kleynhans said that they hope the recognition will help to resolve this serious problems in the employer to employee relationship at Airlink.

Collision leaves many injured on M1 highway

By Odette Ismail
26 February 2007

A tragic accident left one woman dead and others seriously injured yesterday after the taxi they were driving in crashed into a car on the M1 highway in Sandton.

ER24 spokesperson Nick Dollman told an online service that the woman was flung out during the collision and crushed by the taxi when it fell on its side

Bystanders and some taxi passengers on the scene lifted the taxi, but the woman died of head injuries.

It is believed that the driver of the car had an asthma attack, but he is in hospital in a stable condition.

The taxi driver and six taxi passengers were transported to various hospitals, according to paramedics.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

SARS hands over a summons to Zuma

By Odette Ismail
25 February 2007

ANC deputy president Jacob Zuma has received a summons from the South African Revenue Services (SARS) after he apparently failed to return his tax form.

A weekend paper has reported that his attorney had picked up the summons at the Durban
magistrate’s court last week.

Michael Hulley, Zuma’s attorney confirmed that the tax return had been filed late.

He told the Weekend Argus that Zuma’s tax business was private and did not comment further.
SARS spokesperson Adrian Lackay gave no comment; he says no SARS official is allowed to disclose such information of any taxpayer.

No more tasty food for Shaik

By Odette Ismail
25 February 2007

Correctional Services Minister Ngconde Balfour has ordered that convicted fraudster Schabir Shaik goes back to eating the normal meals served at the Westville prison.

Shaik has been enjoying tasty foods at St Augustine hospital for 83 days after becoming ill.

A source told reporters that menu at the hospital was quite lavish. Breakfasts would include eggs, croissants, pancakes, sausages, fruit and muesli. Where lunch and supper would be roast chicken, curry, trammezini etc, with delicious desserts.

Former inmates told the Weekend Argus that these foods will not be found on the menu at the prison.

Meals at the prison is believed to be maize meal in the morning, bread and various gravies and vegetables and supper consisted of more bread again with a cold orange juice.

The prison’s panel of doctors confirmed Shaik’s condition stable to return to prison.

Stolen Cape Town baby reunited with parents

By Odette Ismail
25 February 2007

There were emotional scenes last night when police handed over 3-month-old Yolande Yobe back to her parents at the police station on the airport premises.

Western Cape detectives arrested a 29-year-old woman at Amersfoot in Mpumalanga yesterday afternoon, according to the police’s Elliot Sinyangana.

The baby was reported missing from her home in Makaza in Khayelitsha last week Thursday.

It was believed that the suspect visited the mother and the baby and posed as a social worker. The impostor took Yolanda to a nearby shop for a cooldrink, but never came back.

The suspect will return to Cape Town this afternoon.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Taliep Petersen's muder case in the spotlight again

By Odette Ismail
24 February 2007

Police have questioned a Cape Town man on Thursday in connection with the murder of theater personality Taliep Petersen

Superintendent Billy Jones told reporters that a routine check was conducted and that the man is not necessarily a suspect.

Petersen will be remembered by many for his involvement in musicals reflecting the lives of people residing in District Six in Cape Town, before the forced removals by the apartheid government.

Peterson was murdered in his home in Athlone on the 16 December 2006. He was found lying tied-up on the floor with a bullet wound to his neck.

Fire fighters kept busy at Cape Town veld fire

By Odette Ismail
24 February 2007

There has been veld fire reported at Zonnebloem,Cape Town.

At the moment there are six fire engines on the scene, with big
Clouds of grey smoke surrounding the area.

Fire fighters are currently trying to extinguish the fire. No-one is reported injured and the cause of the fire is still unknown.

Cape Town contract teacher angered over no pay

B y Tarryn Le Chat
24 February 2007

A Western Cape contact teacher who has not been paid since the start of the school year says he is ‘fed up’ with begging for his salary.

Roy Prinsloo, a contact teacher at Cathkin Secondary School in Heideveld, has been trying for three weeks to find out why he has not yet been paid.

Prinsloo is a member of the South African Forum for Freelance Educators. The forum was launched last year after a number of contact teachers had similar pay problems.

Jonavon Rustin, provincial secretary of the South Africa Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) said that it was unacceptable that educators work don’t get paid at the end of the month.

Rustin said that the union was advocating for all contact teachers to be made permanent to avoid similar situations.

Gert Witbooi, spokesperson for Education MEC Cameron Dugmore said the department was looking into the matter.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Community Information Network

By Tarryn Le Chat
19 - 23 February

# Pride launches a collection of up-coming and well-established artists held in association with Seleno Gallery. This event will be held at the Artscape Theatre and the exhibition will run for five days. For more information contact 021 425 64 61 or email:

# The Athlone Diabetes support group will be meeting on the 27 February at the Rylands library, Balu Parker Boulevard, next to the Gatesville Mosque, from 6:30pm to 8pm. Clinical psychologist Kamal Kamaloodien will be the guest speaker. Contact Fatima Noor at 082 491 3794.

# The people of Manenberg and the proudly Manenberg campaign are working together to build a New Manenberg for a better future for all. They plan to create job opportunities and fight poverty and unemployment. The launch takes place today at 7pm. They plan to implement their safety plan between Matilda, Madge and Lettie courts. For more information call the Proudly Manenberg Campaign on 021 691 0918.

# Act of Grace 7 is a non-profit organisation in Athlone. Part of our focus is to offer the unemployed community a free Youth Entrepreneurial Training Course. Each workshop can accommodate 30 participants. Training dates for this year are as follows

· 19 to 23 February
· 5 to 9 March
· 16 to 21 April
· 14 to 19 May

Call Alice Hopley on 021 696 4625 or 082 4252054 you can also contact Mark Anthony 083 5043988.

# The Wynberg library has a story time slot every Wednesday at 10:30am. For more details call Olivia Prins on 021 797 9178 or 021 797 6492.

If you have any information for the CIN team regarding events happening in your community please contact us on 021 4485450, you can also fax us on 021 4485451 alternatively email us at If you have missed any of the numbers mentioned feel free to contact us.

Domestic worker killed during house breaking

By Tando Mfengwana
23 February 2007

Two men are expected to appear in Simonstown Magistrate court on charges of Murder and House Robbery on Monday, in DisaWay, Noordhoek.

An au pair returned home with four children to discover the body of the domestic worker, 21-year-old Mary Kamanga from Masiphumelele, lying in her bedroom.

It is said that her hands and feet were tied to the bed with a rope and she had a rope around her neck. Kamanga had no visible open wounds.

The au pair allegedly noticed three strange men walking with bags from the back yard towards the front.

Police spokesperson Inspector Bernadine Steyn says that the suspects took a cell phone, jewellery, CD’s, and wine valued at about R50 000.

The suspects fled the scene in a white Volkswagen Passat.

Steyn says that one of the suspects, a 36-year-old man was arrested at his house in Delft South.

Police confiscated the alleged escape vehicle at the man’s house.

Another suspect, 36 year old was later arrested at his house in Wonderboom Street, Delft South.

Police are still looking for the third suspect.

Anyone with information can contact the Investigating Officer, Sergeant Chris Cloete at the Fishhoek Police station on 021 782 6333 or Crime Stop on 08600 10111.

Old offensive Cape by-laws to be scrapped

By Tando Mfengwana
23 February 2007

The City of Cape Town will repeal 800 by-laws that no longer work, dating back to the 1800’s.

The City has identified the 1898 by-law relating to brothels, a 1910 by-law regarding the safety of the public at “cinematograph exhibitions”, and a 1911 by-law relating to the “prevention of danger from whirligigs and switchback railways”.

A 1956 decree relating to the premises licence for the “accommodation of natives” is one of the offensive by-laws, including another concerning the “census of natives”.

The City’s Brent Gerber says that these by-laws come from the old Cape Town area, Tygerberg and Bellville and some other areas around the City.

The Mayoral committee approved essentially that the draft by-law that would repeal of all the by-laws at once.

This by-law will be advertised for public comment.

Illicit liquor-sale case postponed

By Chanel September
23 February 2007

A Kensington man facing charges of dealing in liquor, possession of stolen property and fraud appeared briefly in the Cape Town magistrate Court on Monday.

The 50-year-old suspect was arrested last week, when police embarked on a search warrant operation.

Liquor found on the scene was confiscated. During the searching process eight cellphones, reportedly stolen were also discovered.

All-pay cards belonging to the Department of Social service and Poverty Alleviation and six South African identity books were also confiscated.

The suspect was granted bail and will appear in court on the 20th of March.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Cape Town constable missing

By Ashley Wichman
22 February 2007

Police are searching for a missing Steenberg police constable, Tanya Joseph, after her flat was ransacked and she was absent from work yesterday.

The 26-year-old Manenberg resident, whose father is Cape Argus reporter Norman Joseph, was found to be missing at 6:45 a.m by co-workers who arrived to pick her up for work.

Her father, Cape Argus reporter Norman Joseph, reported to the paper that family spent Wednesday searching for her and that the police searched the False Bay coast beaches until 11 p.m. last night.

Joseph is mother to five-month-old Brandon, who was taken to a friend’s houseby an unkown man and woman.

Anyone with information can contact Supt. Jan Meyer at the Steenberg Police station on (021) 701 1390.

Health department happy with budget allocations

By Nadia Samie
22 February 2007

The national Health Department has expressed its appreciation of the allocation of additional money, made in Finance Minister Trevor Manuel’s budget speech on Wednesday.

The money has been allocated for human resources, HIV/Aids, hospital revitalisation and tertiary services.

The Health Department had earlier made a proposal to the treasury with regard to the remuneration of workers in the health sector, particularly nurses, and the R5.3 billion allocation for human resources is in response to this.

Health spokesperson Sibani Mngadi says that, “The allocation for HIV and Aids will enable the department to achieve its objective of significantly increasing access care and treatment for HIV and Aids to all.”

Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang is expected to elaborate on the utilisation of resources during her own budget speech.

Residents to recieve property valuation notices

By Nadia Samie
22 February 2007

Some 735 000 property owners in Cape Town will receive letters informing them of the new valuations of their properties this week. The letters will also inform residents of the process they need to follow if they wish to object to the new valuation.

It is a requirement of law that the council value the properties at market value, including both land and any improvements that may have been made. The last general valuation was carried out in January 2000.

City councilor Ian Nielson says the total valuation of all properties in the city have increased from R195 billion in 2000 to R654 billion in 2006.

“The date of the new valuation is 2 July 2006, meaning that the valuation must reflect the market value of the property on that date. The total valuation of all properties in the city has increased from R195 billion in 2000 to R654 billion in 2006.” Nielson said.

He added that, “Increased values do not of their own necessarily lead to an increase in the amount of rates paid. The city will reduce the cents in the rand payable in each category, to compensate for the overall increase in values. What is more relevant for an individual property owner to assess is whether their property has increased by more or less than the average increase in that category.

"We are all aware of the particular problem of pensioners and handicapped people who are on a fixed income, whose property value may have increased more than the average, and may face undue increases in rates. "

At present, rebates on a sliding scale are available to pensioners and handicapped people, where their monthly income is up to R3000 per month. However, council will need to consider whether there is a need to increase the upper limit on these additional rebates, available to pensioners and handicapped persons.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

UCT strike resolved

By Nadia Samie
21 Februaury 2007

The strike by non-academic staff at the University of Cape Town (UCT) was resolved today after the union and management reached an agreement.

The support staff, supported by the UCT Employees Union, were demanding a 5,5 percent increase across the board and an extra 1,5 percent based on performance, while UCT management had offered 5,5 percent.

"The fact is that we've managed to reach a negotiated settlement is of benefit to all. We can now get back to the support and administration of a world class University," said UCT Employees Union President Andrea Plos.

The monetary settlement reached means that everyone whose performance has met their job requirements in the past year will receive a minimum of 5.5% whilst those who have exceeded their performance requirements can get more, based on the performance system.

Plos added: "The management and the Union will be continuing to work together on refining the pay performance system this coming year.

"Our membership are loyal employees and the decision to strike, and the taking of unprecedented strike action, did not come easily. I think it was our determination to get a fair deal that convinced management to modify their offer to more closely meet our demands. But now it’s back to work, we've some catching up to do", she added.

Mfuleni residents get new homes

By Chanel September
21 February 2007

An initiative by an Irish developer has resulted in more than 100 shack dwelling families, living in Mfuleini, being able to receive houses today.

The initiative had several hundred builders from Ireland spend a week in Cape Town building low cost houses.

MEC in the Western Cape for Housing Richard Dyantyi says in a statement this led to the unblocking of the Peoples Housing Process projects in Mfuleni.

A work force of more than 400 people from the township is employed to help with the building process.

The Niall Mellon Township Trust works year-round building houses for shack dwellers.

Driver sends message of sympathy to couples family

By Odette Ismail
21 February 2007

The driver who knocked over and killed two British tourists outside the V&A Waterfront has sympathised with their family in England.

Patrick and Jean McQuillen lived on a farm in Uckfield, East Sussex. They died on impact after the 22-year-old driver Nasser Gamieldien, drove through a red traffic light and knocked them at a busy intersection.

It is believed that the couple were heading back to their Tamboerskloof lodgings after the car they hired broke down.

The couple had tried to cross the intersection when they were hit by Gamieldien’s car.

His legal representative George Claasen, has confirmed that Gamieldien has conveyed messages to the McQuillen family to send his condolences through the British consulate. According to reports the family has returned a message to say they appreciate the message of support.

He has tested negative for alcohol after the accident. He faces charges criminal charges of culpable homicide.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Man arrested after foiled cash van robbery

By Tando Mfengwana
20 February 2007

A man was arrested during a foiled cash-in-transit robbery at a garage in Delft, Cape Town on Monday.

Three armed men attacked security guards who were offloading cash from the van.

The robbers demanded all of the money and took two boxes filled with cash.

Police who were stationed near the garage gave chase. The robbers dropped the boxes and fled.

Police spokesperson Constable Siphokazi Mawisa says a 34-year old man was arrested, two others escaped.

He will appear at the Bellville magistrate court on Wednesday.

Mawisa said the other two suspects are still at large.

Parents suspect a neighbour involved in baby's abduction

By Chanel September
20 February 2007

The parents of a nine-week-old baby girl, abducted last week, suspect a neighbour was involved with the disappearance of their daughter.

Yolanda Yoba was taken from her parents home in Makaza, Khayelitsha last Thursday by a woman claiming to be a social worker.

The baby's father, Lucas, says two ladies visited them last Monday saying they were social workers from the Red Cross. The one lady then visited again on Wednesday and Thursday.

Lucas added that a neighbour or community member had been watching his family and was involved in Yolanda’s kidnapping as his home was situated away from the road making it fairly difficult to reach.

Yolanda is the Yoba’s only child.

Police are currently on the lookout for a woman with red dyed hair and a front gold tooth. According to a daily paper the woman was last seen in the Stellenbosh area wearing blue jeans and a white t-shirt.

Anyone with information should contact the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit on (021) 981 3162 or CrimeStop on 08600 10111.

Tragic accidents on Cape roads claim two lives

By Odette Ismail
20 February 2007

A tragic accident on the N2 near Wilderness involving a bakkie, a car and a truck left a woman dead and three people seriously injured.

NSRI medics helped a father and his son who had serious injuries, as well as the driver of the bakkie whose condition worsened on the scene. They are now in a stable condition in hospital.

The woman was already dead when she was discovered trapped in the car, while the truck driver came off uninjured.

Meanwhile one of Bush Radio’s reporters arrived on an accident scene along Sir Lowry’s Pass yesterday morning. A 50 year-old motorcyclist died when he and another biker collided with a bakkie.

There were bodies scattered along the road, at the time one of the bikers was moving his head while the other just lay still. The couple in the bakkie had reported injuries, as the woman had blood all over her white skirt.

Police are investigating a case of culpable homicide.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Two women caught up in Ocean View shooting

By Tando Mfengwana
19 February 2007

At 10:45 Monday morning, a 28-year-old man allegedly tried to kill two sisters at their home. The drama unfolded at a house in Ntatala Street, Site 5 in Ocean View.

The man fired several shots at his 24-year-old sister-in-law who was in the lounge at the time. She sustained gunshot wounds to her back and one shot just grazed her head.

Police spokesperson Inspector Bernadine Steyn says she was taken to hospital and she is in a stable condition.

The suspect then went to the bedroom where he shot his 30-year-old wife.

She was hit by two bullets in the chest and stomach.

The suspect’s wife was airlifted to a nearby hospital and she is a critical condition.

The suspect from Philippi-East ran away from the scene on foot and is still at large. Police are investigating a case of Attempted Murder.

Cosatu backs airport name change

By Nadia Samie
19 February 2007

Trade union federation Cosatu has come out in support of Western Cape Premier Ebrahim Rasool’s proposal to rename Cape Town International Airport to James La Guma Airport.

Rasool made the proposal to name the busy airport after the late trade unionist and liberation fighter during his State of the Province Address on Friday.

Cosatu says in a statement that, “we must honour the real leaders of our country, irrespective of race and party affiliation.”

Cosatu has called for a public process, to be wrapped up by the end of April 2007. They are also calling for the renaming of, “all streets and public spaces that still bear the offensive names of the apartheid past.”

Born in Bloemfontein in 1894, La Guma joined the Communist Party of South Africa in 1924. During apartheid, La Guma assisted in the organisation of unemployed workers, and in 1933 helped to organise the garment workers of the Cape. He served a term of imprisonment arising out of a strike by these workers.

La Guma died at the age of 67 while undergoing treatment for a heart ailment.

Possilbe taxi war on the cards

By Chanel September
19 February 2007

The fatal shooting of a former leader of the Congress of Democratic Taxi Associations (Codeta) has sparked fears of a taxi war in Cape Town.

Fifty-two-year-old David Jezile was shot at 6-o-clock on Friday morning near his home in Harare, Khayelitsha.

According to police unknown men fired several shots at Jezile while he was travelling in his white bakkie. He sustained gunshot wounds to his stomach and head. Jezile later died in hospital as a result of his injuries.

Codeta vice chairperson Fikile Mriba says the association was shocked at the death of Jezile and that fears are that a war among some operators is possible.

Jezile’s killing follows that of Michael Kapiso a fellow taxi boss gunned down soon after testifying to the Ntsebeza Commision into taxi violence. Jezile also testified during the commission.

The Western Cape Taxi Council condemns the killing and has called for the arrest of those responsible.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Air force officer dies during training

By Tando Mfengwana
18 February 2007

A candidate air force officer died of a heart attack and another was injured, during a 24-hour physical training exercise near Hammanskraal, outside Pretoria.

It is believed that flight Sergeant Lionel Marthinus died after he complained of chest pains.

Sergeant R van Tonder encored a broken ankle during the training session.

Reports quote the South African National Defence Union’s Pikkie Greef as saying officers have allegedly been threatened with disciplinary action if they leaked to the media or union.

An investigation into the incident has been opened.

SA writers make Commonwealth shortlist

Staff reporter
18 February 2007

Four South African writers have been short-listed in the 2007 Commonwealth Writers’ awards.

Shaun Johnson’s The Native Commissioner (Penguin), Ken Barris’s What Kind of Child (Kwela), Zoe Wicomb’s Playing in the Light and Ronnie Governder’s Song of the Atman (Jacan) are all contenders for the best book prize in the African section.

The awards seek to reward outstanding literary talent in many parts of the Commonwealth, and makes a significant contribution to contemporary writing in English.

South Africans also feature on the shortlist for best book.

The books are from Maxime Case, with his book All We Have Left Unsaid, Kgebeti Moele’s Room 207 (Kwela), Gerald Kraak’s Ice in the Lungs (Jacana), Louis Greenberg’s The Beggar’s Signwriter (Umuzi) and David Medalie’s The Shadow Follows (Picador).

According to the Commonwealth Foundation, the objectives of the prize are to promote new voices, reward achievement, encourage wider readership and greater literacy, thereby increasing appreciation of different cultures and building understanding between cultures

The winner of the 21st Commonwealth Writers' Prize will be announced on 27 May 2007 at the Calabash International Literary Festival in Jamaica.

Cosatu threaten strike after miners' arrest

By Tando Mfengwana
18 February 2007

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has backed the seven miners arrested during a violent protest at Rustenburg’s Impala Platinum mines.

Cosatu has threatened a mass protest of the court where the miners will appear on Monday, if they are not released.

Almost 15 000 workers allied to the National Union of Mineworkers took strike action against the delay in the rolling out of ARV’s to patients at the mine clinic.

After that they marched to the mine hospital demanding the dismissal of Dr John Andrews, the mine doctor.

The miners blame Andrews for slowing down the process of rolling out ARV’s to patients.

In a statement Cosatu’s North West Provincial Secretary, Solly Phetoe says that Cosatu welcomes the report that agreement was reached that workers should go back to work as soon as possible and that mine management has agreed to suspend Andrews.

He says that the meeting between the NUM and the mine management would see the two agree to the urgent implementation of ARV provision to those who need it.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

District Six tenants won't budge

By Tando Mfengwana
17 February 2007

Seventeen tenants of the historic District Six area cottages put banners on their cottages on Friday, in protest of eviction.

The tenants received letters from lawyers representing the Essop Mohamed Will Trust, ordering them to vacate the grounds by February 28, 2007.

The tenants, with support from the Anti-Eviction Campaign and legal firm Jan S de Villiers, joined forces to fight the eviction.

Independent Online reports that each cottage was covered with banners saying “Hands off Pontac, Nelson and Aspeling Streets! We are the last of the original District 6” and “Our sniors belong here – have pity on them”.

Speaking for the tenants, Magdalene George, 70, said the trust’s lawyers had also written to threaten court action if they display banners.

The cottages are listed in the South African Heritage Association as a Grade 1 site.

The dispute centered on the cottages started when they were inherited by eight brothers in 2000.

Dr Omargee Essop Mohamed Omar, the sole trustee, was given the right to sell after going to church last year.

In an attempt to stop the sale of the cottages, the tenants put in an offer to buy in 2006 but it was refused.

The letter was sent to the tenants by Chris Ficks and Associates.

It said that the properties will be sold to the open market and that it had become unsafe for residential.

Snoek makes welcomed return to Cape waters

By Tando Mfengwana
17 February 2007

Fishermen are gloating as the long awaited return of Snoek in the Cape arrives.

Independent Online reports that the call came from the Oceana Power Boat Club that snoek had been running off Robben Island for the first time in Four years.

The snoek four year absence left hundreds’ of fishermen struggling to make ends meet.

Around 80 boats went out to sea and returned with loads of fish.

More boats went out on Friday and returned with bucket loads.

Oceana Power Boat Club slipway manager Ivan Burnett said that the snoek used to bypassed Robben Island and there was nothing to catch.

The Boat Club is the only launch facility for small boats between Hout Bay and Yzerfontein.

He said this week the fish were back in numbers.

Snoek normally goes for about R35 a fish, but the price is expected to drop, if the good fortune continues.

Burnett said that because of the change in weather conditions, catches slightly dropped on Friday.

Baby Kidnapped in Khayelitsha

By Tando Mfengwana
17 February 2007

A 3-month-old baby was kidnapped at her home in 40-Section Makhaza, Khayelitsha on Thursday.

Yolanda Yoba was with her 25-year-old mother when they were visited by an unknown woman.
The woman took the baby for a walk to a nearby shop for a cooldrink, but did not return.

She was dressed in blue jeans and a white top. Police said the woman also had a gold tooth.

She allegedly visited the previous day with another woman, both claiming to be Social Workers.

Police are investigating a case of Abduction and anyone with information can contact the Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit on (021) 918 3162.

Khayelitsha man found murdered

By Chanel September
17 February 2007

Drama unfolded in 38 Section, Harare in Khayelitsha, in the early hours of yesterday morning.

At the scene police found a 52-year-old man with several gun shot wounds to his stomach and back.

According to police an unknown man fired several shots at the driver of a bakkie. The driver still managed to drive for a distance of 100 meters after it collided with a shack.

The driver of the bakkie was taken to a nearby hospital but died due to injures.

The motive for the attack is still unknown and all possibilities are being investigated.

Anyone with information can contact Detective Inspector Reginald Mtshali of the Provincial Organised Crime Unit (021) 950 1376 or Crime Stop on 08600 10 111.

Friday, February 16, 2007

State of the province address

By Tarryn Le Chat
16 February 2007

The streets were filled with marching bands and a guard of honour at the Provincial Building in Wale Street today as everyone waited in anticipation for the arrival of the Premier of the Western Cape, Ebrahim Rasool, to deliver his State of the Province address.

Adderley to Wale Street was barred off and many school children and the public stood along the paths. A marimba band and choir entertained the crowd. At about 10am, the Premier arrived and the national anthem was sung. Everyone then moved into legislature to hear the speech.

Rasool started off his speech by addressing poverty and crime. The eradication of poverty is a priority because many of the youth and society steal and prostitute themselves to be able to put food on the table at home, he said.

A lot of the youth from poorer communities, such as Hanover Park, sees drugs and gangsterism as a way of life. The drug ‘tik’ is the choice for many of these kids. The premier feels that more rehabilitation centres should be opened.

With a backlog of 400 000 for housing, Rasool said the province can meet the demand by 2014. He said, though, that government is prepared to handle this situation.

“Seventy-nine percent of those needing houses earn less that R1 500 per month. However, MEC for local government and housing, Richard Dyantyi is poised to receive an average of R1.2 billion from government a year”, said Rasool.

The taxi-recapitalisation programme was a success according to the premier. He believes more investment from 2010 should result in employment in the construction, leisure, transport, tourism and service sectors.

Benefits do include a dedicated bus and taxi lanes from the R300 right into Cape Town along the N2 and the expansion of the airport through a R2 billion expansion investment.

Salt River revitalisation project in 2nd phase

By Nadia Samie
16 February 2007

Residents of the Salt River are and all parties interested in the Salt River Market Revitalisation Project are invited to a public meeting next week to discuss phase two of the initiative, as the first phase draws to a close.

The area was earmarked for public investment and the creation of public spaces conducive to vibrant urban life.

Lorryn Mcvitty, a Spatial Planner from the City, says the Salt River Market was identified as it was seen as a valuable community space that was in need of upgrading. She says that the project is part of a broader revitalisation plan for the Salt River/Woodstock area.

Phase one of the project saw the landscaping of the civic square and the refurbishment of the ablution facilities. Liezel du Preez, a City Urban Designer, says that the initial phase included a cosmetic upgrade of the area, and that the next step will focus on things like landscaping the market entrance space, improving the pedestrian crossing and other factors.

The project is now entering the next phase and the meeting will focus on introducing and obtaining endorsement of the proposed Spatial Development Framework and Design for phase 2. The sustainable management of the market in the future will also be discussed.

Monday’s meeting, 19 February, will focus on the the establishment of a steering committee to monitor and advise on the roll-out of the next phase of the revitalisation project, and residents and stakeholders are encouraged to attend. The meeting commences at 7PM and is expected to end at 9PM. The venue is the Salt River Town Hall.

Pick 'n Pay takes on big bakery suppliers over bread increases

By Tarryn Le Chat
16 February 2007

Pick ‘n Pay is rumoured to take action against major bakery suppliers who allegedly conspired to simultaneously sell bread at an increased price a week before the Christmas period in South Africa.

Nick Badminton, chief executive of Pick n Pay, said that they had strongly supported the deregulation of the previous boards of control, meant to ensure competition.

“This is why, depending on the level of discount we are able to secure from the major suppliers, we often sell bread to consumers at cost, and sometimes even below cost, particularly when prices from go up”, he said.

According to online reports, collusion amongst suppliers flew directly in the face of this intention.

The case has been referred to the Competition Tribunal.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Guard killed in copper theft drama

By Chanel September
15 February 2007

A scuffle that broke out between a security guard and a copper cable thief left one dead and another seriously injured.

The drama unfolded when the two guards discovered a man trying to saw a piece of underground copper cable. When the guards apprehended him, the man fled the scene. They gave chase and one of the guards caught up with the thief 400m down the road.

The incident occurred in the early hours of Wednesday morning at a site in Mosselbank Street in Kraafontien.

The copper thief pulled out a knife and stabbed the guard three times in the chest. He died on the scene. The other guard sustained injuries to the face and was taken to a nearby hospital.

City spokesperson Pieter van Dalen says the incident raised the stakes in the city’s escalating war against copper cable thieves.

Community Information Network

By Tarryn Le Chat
15 February 2007

12 February - 16 February

# Bookings are open for single seats for concerts at the Baxter in the first half of the 2007 season of the Cape Town Concert Series. The concerts include the acclaimed Korean soprano and top Unisa international competition prizewinner Ji-Hyun Park will perform art songs. On Saturday March 17 sees the return by public demand, of the Russian pianist Konstantin Soukhovetski.

# On Monday 19 February 2007 the Western Cape Branch will co-host a ‘fireside chat’ at the Cape Town club, Weltevreden street, Cape Town at 6pm with the club and the Swiss embassy. Swiss state secretary for Foreign Affairs, Michael Ambuhl, will speak on Switzerland’s foreign policy, its principles and Application thereof in Sub-Saharan Africa.

# Deputy Minister Aziz Pahad will be speaking on South Africa’s role in the security council at the centre for the book, Queen Victoria street, Cape Town on Tuesday 20 February 2007 at 5pm.

# Oaks of righteousness is a community youth development organisation running various programmes and projects in the community. We are currently running a youth after school programme for young people between 10 and 18 years. This programme is free and runs Monday to Thursday from 3pm to 6pm and Fridays from 2 to 6 pm.

# Act of Grace 7 is a non-profit organisation in Athlone. Part of our focus is to offer the unemployed community a free Youth Entrepreneurial Training Course. Each workshop can accommodate 30 participants. Training dates for this year are as follows

· 19 to 23 February
· 5 to 9 March
· 16 to 21 April
· 14 to 19 May

Call Alice Hopley on 021 696 4625 or 082 425 2054 you can also contact Mark Anthony 083 504 3988.

If you have any information for the CIN team regarding events happening in your community please contact us on 021 4485450, you can also fax us on 021 4485451 alternatively email us at

Teen stow-away's funeral planned

By Odette Ismail
15 February 2007

The funeral of the 17-year-old Samuel Benjamin who was found frozen in the wheel well of a British Airways Boeing is to be on Saturday.

However, is parents are reportedly still not sure when his body will be transported back.

A pilot found Benjamin in the wheel bay three weeks ago, during an inspection before a flight.

The Department of Foreign Affairs has assured the family that the boy’s body will arrive this week. It is believed that the Department of Foreign Affairs was suppose to meet with the family yesterday, but it did not follow through.

A businessman David Rencontre has come forward to pay for the funeral and the British Airways agreed to fly the body back without charging the parents any fee.

Failed attempt on mothers life causes baby's death

By Tarryn Le Chat
15 February 2007

A three-month-old baby was killed when an attempt on the mother’s life failed in Middleburg’s Dullstroom Township, in Mpumalanga.

According to police, a vehicle owned by a friend of the stepfather, was used in the attempt in driving over the mother, but failed when the mother, who had the infant in her arms, ran and dropped the baby boy in the road.

Reports say the baby died instantly on impact with the car.

Captain Leonard Hlathi said the 24-year-old man deliberately drove towards the mother. He had allegedly intended killing his 21-year-old wife after they could not ‘resolve’ a problem.

Both were arrested and charged with murder and domestic violence.

They will appear in the Machadodorp magistrate’s court soon.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Wallcedene shack fire leaves 66 homeless

By Chanel September
14 February 2007

A fire ravaged through 16 shacks in the informal settlement of Wallecedene near Kraafontien.

The fire was reported yesterday afternoon just after 2pm. More than 60 people have been left homeless. Of the 66 people left homeless, 30 were children

Johan Minnie Spokesperson for the City’s Disaster Risk Management says that the cause of the fire is still unknown. No injuries were sustained.

Minnie added that food parcels will be provided for the residents for the next three days.

Police allegedly rob, assualt woman

By Tando Mfengwana
14 February 2007

A Khayelitsha woman is accusing two patrolling police officers from the area of assault and robbery.

Nompumelelo Piliso says she was on her way to the shop to buy bread when two police officers, a man and a woman, approached her and searched her.

She alleges that the officers then took her cellphone and R350.

“When I asked her what she’s going to do with my cellphone and money she told me to go home, so I told them I won’t go, I refused to go, then he bit me, he klapped me first then he kicked me.

“So the black guy came out with a sjambok then he beat me,” Piliso said

She reported the incident to police the next day.

The Democratic Alliance N2 Development Constituency chairperson, Masizole Mnqasela has expressed shock at the incident.

He says that, “their act to assault and steal from a woman whose safety they had to ensure,” is disappointing.

Police spokesperson Captain Randall Stoffels says that they are aware of the situation.

Stoffels confirmed that Piliso did lodged a complaint against two officers , but he said she could not identify them.

SAPS has refused to comment further, as the case is under investigation.

Valentines Day get tested campaign kicks off

By Odette Ismail
14 February 2007

The City of Cape Town is encouraging couples to have themselves tested for HIV during the hype of St Valentines Day on February 14th.

The City has set up testing units at various locations around the Peninsula.

“We are encouraging couples to come and get tested for HIV to get to know their status, if you really love somebody, show that you love them by coming together as a couple and finding out your status and changing your sexual behaviour to practice safer sex,” says executive director of City Health Dr Ivan Toms.

Toms says that in South Africa, it is really important to use key days like Valentines Day to encourage couples to face their fears of HIV.

Counselor Martin Fienies, the Mayoral Committee Member for Health said that the City has always been committed to strategies to fight HIV and Aids. He says they welcome the partnership with Levi Strauss SA and New Start for a Valentines Outreach.

The test is free and is not only aimed at couples, but singles too.

Get tested at the following malls today (09:00-15:00):

· Khayelitsha Mall
· Tygervalley Mall
· Maynard Mall, Wynberg
· St George’s Mall
· Nynaga Junction, Nyanga Station
· Vineyard Centre, cnr Andries Pretorius and Church Streets, Somerset West

On the 15 and 16 February testing will also take place at the Promenade Mall in Mitchell's Plain. Cape Town resident's are strongly encouraged to attend.

Turn of events in student murder case

By Tarryn Le Chat
14 February 2007

In a startling turn of events, a 23-minute video taken by a police photographer, which highlighted the events leading up to the death of Inge Lotz, a university student, was shown at the Cape High Court on Tuesday afternoon in the murder trial, continuing since March 2005.

Lotz, a Stellenbosch University student, was found lying motionless with her brown hair tumbled over the arm of her couch. It was only on closer inspection that the full and bloody horror of what had happened to the 22-year-old student became apparent.

Lotz was allegedly bludgeoned to death in her flat with an ornamental hammer, allegedly by her former boyfriend, Fred van der Vyver who is now on trial in the Cape High Court.

Judge Deon van Zyl, his assessors, the teams of lawyers and members of the public watched in total silence as the video unfolded.

The video began outside the flat, and moved in to the kitchen area, where it dwelt on a set of Volkswagen keys, sunglasses and a cellphone lying on the corner of a counter top.

As the footage moved along, it reportedly showed more graphic detail of the murdered Lotz. Her head was turned slightly, her eyes open and her lips parted. She had gaping wounds caused by a blunt object to her head and chest and blood pooled in her left ear.

On a chair in Lotz’s bedroom was a pair of jeans and a trio of small teddy bears.

Van der Vyver, sitting in the dock in a suit and tie, was unable to look at the most gruesome parts of the video, looking down and only occasionally glancing up.

Van der Vyver denies he killed Lotz, saying he was at work in Pinelands at the time when the murder took place.

The case continues.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Truck wage deadlock resolved

By Tando Mfengwana
13 February 2007

Employers in the Road Freight sector and the unions have reached an agreement, to avert strike by the unions.

In a statement the Motor Transport Workers Union says that Fedusa unions in the sector signed a two-year wage agreement yesterday.

The Fedusa unions agreed on a 9 percent and 8 percent wage increases for 2007 and 2008 respectively.

The four unions (Satawu, TAWU, MTWU and Professional Transport Workers Union) had been in deadlock with the employers and would strike if agreement was not reached by today.

The Freight industry caters for Cash In Transit workers, Road Ferry trucks, furniture trucks and ordinary long distance truck drivers.

Three suspects to appear in court for Swiss killing

By Chanel September
11 February 2007

Three suspects have been arrested in connection with the murder of Erwin Möckli

The Swiss citizen’s body was found dumped in Khayelitsha last month.

According to reports the three were arrested last Tuesday and appeared in the Khayelitsha magistrate's court on a charge of murder.

Police spokesperson Captain Elliot Sinyangana says that Jeff Oduekwe, Julius Imoni, and Nolubabalo Oduekwe are in custody.

The suspects are to appear in court again on Wednesday.

Feb. 9 State of the Nation Address: Photo Gallery

2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee chairperson, Irvin Khoza
Minister of Foreign Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

Democratic Alliance leader Tony Leon and his wife

Education Minister Naledi Pandor

Nomakhaya Mdaka of the Independant United Front

Public Works Minister Thoko Didiza

Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism, Marthinus van Schalkwyk and his wife

United Democratic Movement Leader Bantu Holamisa

The Guard of Honour

Gavin Woods, spokesperson for Nadeco, with Bush Radio's Tando Mfengwana

Health Minister Mantombazana Tshabalala-Msimang

Inkatha Freedom Party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi

Douglas Gibson, DA Chief Whip with partner

Reverend Kenneth Meshoe, leader of the ACDP, and his wife

Tony Yengeni and his wife

Dressed to the nines in an all-leather outfit

The bad weather couldn't dampen the spirits of this marching band

Thabo Mbeki saluting during the national anthem

Photos by Parker Mah

City vendors without permits to lose their business

By Odette Ismail
13 February 2007

Vendors without a permit will lose their businesses on Cape Town station deck today.

Simon Grindrod mayoral committee member for Economic Development and Social Development, Property Mangement and Tourism, says that they are concerned about the state of the station deck. He claims that drug-dealing, assault and vandalism has become the downfall of the station deck.

He confirmed that the city and the South African Rail Commuter Corporation have come up with a plan. The taxi rank will have a face-lift and a decent market will be provided for informal traders with permits.

They are also working on crime and the general condition of the the station deck.

Last year 229 applications were issued to people wanting to trade on the station deck, but out of 198 returns only 88 were approved.

According to policy, traders have to be historically disadvantaged, have one trading bay in the city, be unemployed and have a South African identity document or a work permit.

If traders are not in possession of a permit today they will have to pack up their stalls and leave.

Police commissioner charged with attempted murder

By Tarryn Le Chat
13 February 2007

Tshwane metro police commander Simon Bhebe will appear in court on a charge of attempted murder once he is discharged from hospital.

Bhebe was involved in a shooting incident on Sunday, in which he and another man were wounded.

An argument outside the Mazukwana tavern in Attridgeville saw the police commissioner and a group of men arguing when gunshots were fired by both groups.

Inspector Paul Ramaloko said that Bhebe may be discharged on Tuesday. A third person has been arrested and charged with attempted murder.

Police confiscated three firearms and two vehicles at the scene of the incident.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Husband killed in domestic violence

By Tando Mfengwana
12 February 2007

A 25 –year-old woman is accused of stabbing her husband to death in Karringmelkfontien near Albertinia on the Southern Cape.

It is alleged that Jacobus Scholtz, 26, was stabbed after the couple had an argument at their home on Sunday. The police say Scholtz had assaulted his wife several times.

Police spokesperson, Captain Malcolm Pojie, says the woman got a hold of her husband’s pocket knife and allegedly stabbed him in his stomach.

The woman went to a neighbouring farm to ask for help. Upon her return home, she found that Scholtz had died.

She will appear at the Albertinia Magistrate's Court tomorrow.

Married, pregnant learner back at school

By Odette Ismail
12 February 2007

Education MEC Cameron Dugmore has ordered a Rocklands High school principal to let a married, pregnant girl continue her school career today.

Pupils at the school in Mitchell’s Plain are protesting against her completing her Grade 12 year at the school.

According to reports the school governing body says they are against the fact that she is married and not that she is pregnant.

It is believed that the girl got married under Muslim rites over the holiday period.

Gert Witbooi, Education spokesperson, says that the department’s officials have been in touch with the school and told the principal that in terms of the South African law she will be allowed back.

“Obviously she is pregnant as well so she will be managed under the learner-pregnancy policy which dictates that at some stage based on a medical examination she will have to leave school,” says Witbooi.

He says she then has to register as a private candidate to write her Grade 12 examination and she will not be able to return to the school.

Youth murdered in Hanover Park

By Tarryn Le Chat
11 February 2007

Samier Valentine, a 17-year-old youth, was fatally wounded an done male person was seriously injured during a shooting incident that occurred in Lonston Road, on an open field in Hanover Park.

It is alleged that three male occupants in a grey Volkswagen Golf stopped next to them and fired fired several shots while they were on foot.

The deceased sustained bullet wound to his right eye and passed away on the scene.

The 33-year-old injured male sustained a bullet wound to his right upper leg and both arms. He was taken to a nearby hospital in a serious but stale condition.

Detectives from Phillippi police followed up information which led to the arrests of two suspects aged 31 and 32-years-old fro the Hanover Park in connection with the alleged shooting incident.

They will appear in the Magistrate’s Court soon.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Stormers to get 'special jersey'

By Tarryn Le Chat
11 February 2007

Less than a day after their team was booed off the field by the meagre crowd at Newlands on Friday night, die-hard Stormers supporters turned out in droves yesterday for a chance to meet some of the players.

The event at Canal Walk was to unveil a special jersey to celebrate the Stormers’ 10th season. The jersey will be worn only for Friday’s match against the Chiefs at Newlands.

This year the Stormers switched from black to solid navy to help bring them in line with the traditional royal blue of the Western Province brand, said Gavin Lewis WP Rugby general manager.

The navy kit is the third uniform change for the Stormers in the past decade.

Several people injured in a collision with tanker truck

By Tarryn Le Chat
11 February 2007

Seven people have died and at least three were injured when the bakkie they were travelling in collided with a large tanker truck on the West coast road near Melkbosstrand.

The Barloworld Logistics truck carrying several tons of cement collided with Kuilsriver registered Mazda Drifter at about 9pm last night.

A policeman said the deceased included two children and five adults. Bodies and debris were thrown for a large distance along the road.

Police closed of a section of the road and diverted traffic while rescue staff attended to the scene.

Princess visits 'miracle' centre

By Tarryn Le Chat
11 February 2007

Princess Caroline of Monaco arrived in Cape Town this weekend and visited a child care centre in Macassar which the principality has funded.

To show their appreciation the 3 and 4-year-old pupils of the Khanyisa Educare Centre sang to the princess and gave her flowers.

The princess ins on a two week trip through Africa in her capacity as president of Amade Mondiale (World Association of children’s Friends). It is a non-governmental, non-profit child advocacy organisation founded in 1963.

The organisation has donated R300 000 a year for three years.

A South African NGO, the centre for Early Childhood Development, is overseeing the construction of the projects and trains the teachers.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Reaction from State of the Nation Speech

By Odette Ismail
Tando Mfengwana
09 February 2007

There has been a wide reaction from opposition parties after President Thabo Mbeki’s State of the Nation Address today in Parliament.

While some are giving the president a thumbs- up others say they will have to see after the Budget speech to tell if this holds value.

ID leader Patricia de Lille says “Well he acknowledged that there are many challenges facing us regarding poverty…on the issue of crime he also acknowledged that crime is a problem; however he did not mention anything about the arms deal.”

De Lille says he missed an opportunity to call on the nation to unite against crime.

Mbeki spoke about the rate of growth over the past two years and how this is the highest since South Africa’s democracy. IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi says time will only tell if this is true.

“ Promises of course is okay, but one needs to wait and see this time next year whether in fact to an extent all of those things have been implemented and to the extent of AsgiSA( Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative), but I think it’s a very good initiative on the part of government.” , says Buthelezi.

Parliamentary spokesperson for the ANC Smuts Ngonyama says that the president did not run away from the issue of education.

Mbeki spoke about the progress of the recapitalisation of Further Education and training. He says this year resources will be made available for financial assistance to trainees who need it so that they can enter the courses.

National Democratic Convention Spokesperson Gavin Woods said that he said, in terms of crime the president cannot satisfy hysterical white electorate, “but I think if we look carefully and had a more realistic idea of what’s causing crime, maybe, will pass him on that one.”

The president in his speech said that the annual reduction rate of contact crime is still below the 7-10 percent targeted by government.

Professor Kader Asmal said that the speech was more comprehensive that he thought it would be, “the are four very important elements concerning crime for example, I think the checking up on what we promised in 1994, and what we’ve been able to deliver, it was enormously important. As an educationist I’m also very pleased that there has been this reference to further education and training.

Mbeki said that more effort will be placed in improving the functioning of court in the country, to reduce case backlogs.

ACDP leader Rev Kenneth Moshoe said that the speech had many generalities and a few specifics, “particularly in the area of how crime is going to be reduced in South Africa… and the issue of accelerating the campaign against HIV/Aids, is a general statement, but how government is going to reduce new HIV infections.

Foreign Affairs minister says that individual minister have still to elaborate on what the president delivered on his speech. He had a good balance of all the issues that government is dealing with, all its priorities, all delivery, transformation and international issues.

Thousands expected to attend Ma Tambo's funeral

By Chanel September
10 February 2007

Thousands of people are expected to gather at the Wattville Stadium, where struggle icon Adelaide Tambo’s body will be laid to rest.

Both Nelson Mandela and President Thabo Mbeki will address the mourners attending the funeral.

Madiba is to deliver a message of condolence and Mbeki will give the funeral speech. The Anglican Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane will conduct the sermon.

The service will take place at the 9am after a private service at the Tambo 9am after a private service at the Tambo home in Johannesburg.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Mbeki deliveres his state of the nation address

By Tarryn Le Chat
09 February 2007

CAPE TOWN – As wet weather clouded the mother city this morning, parliament was crowded with ministers, delegates, justices and many others who waited on the arrival of South African President Thabo Mbeki to make his annual state of the nation address.

The state of the nation address focuses on what will be done this year to improve society and tackle various issues that communities face everyday.

In parliament, Mbeki’s speech highlights on social grants, crime alleviation, sanitation, housing, water and electricity and unemployment in the country. He spoke of what needs to be done in the country to eradicate poverty and bring the country on a whole to prosperity by standing together to fight crime.

Two other issues addressed were safety and security and HIV/Aids. Government has said it commits itself to intensify its campaign against HIV/Aids and to improve transport structure and make community safety a top priority.

“The challenge that we face in addressing this issue has little to do with policies”, said Mbeki.

After the speech, many opposition parties had varied opinions. Leader of the Democratic Alliance, Tony Leon, believes the president brought forth grass root issues and now need to be tackled head-on. “The president made good points in his speech. However, it is more idealistic and lacked coherent vision.”

Kenneth Meshoe, leader of the African Democratic Christian Party, said that the speech touched on various aspects, most importantly HIV/Aids which is an epidemic in South Africa. “Many South Africans are still without treatment”, said Meshoe.

The minister of health, Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, believes that the president has now determined which aspects are top priority and it is now up to the cabinet ministers to elaborate further.

The state of the province address will be on 16 February. Western Cape Premier, Ebrahim Rasool, will address the province as to how crime and other issues will be tackled.

Welcome to community infomation network

By Chanel September
9 February 2007

# The Manenberg’s People Centre offers hairdressing and beauty courses for people aged 18 to 35, with a minimum of a Grade 10 qualification at the centre in Manenberg. For more information contact the project manager Melanie Rutgers on 021 691 2200 between 9am and 3pm.

#The Alicedale Social Soccer League will host an anti-crime fun day on Sunday February 11, from 10am to 7pm at Alicedale sports field in Athlone. Entry is free and free stalls are available to traders. For information contact Neville Harria on 076 302 5828.

# The Oude Molen Technincal High School Valentine’s Show will take place at the School Hall at 7pm on Friday 16 February. Tickets are R20 each. For more in formation contact or to book your ticket call Mrs Uys on 021 53121108

# Unemployed people aged 22 years and over can apply for the Ottery-based Lorga community Skills Training Centre courses in basic plumbing, basic electrical and welding. Applications should be submitted to the Lorga Office at Lafob Building on the corner of First and Klip roads in Grassy Park. It will cost R50 and applications must take their green South African ID books when they apply between 9am and 12:30 pm from Mondays to Fridays

# A new single parents support group will hold its first meeting on Saturday February 10 at the Fish Hoek library hall during library hours. The club will be for parents and their children every second Saturday. Phone Anita on 021 785 9000 for details.

# In an effort to increase public awareness regarding HIV/Aids, the city’s Mitchell's Plain Sub-district City Health Directorate will embark on promoting couple testing during Valentine’s Day Week. Voluntary counseling and testing will take place at the Promenade Mall on Thursday, 15 February and Friday, 16 February 2007 from 09:00 until 16:00. All are welcome to a free test.

If you have any information for the CIN team regarding events happeining in your community please contact us on 021 4485450, you can also fax us on 021 4485451 alternatively email us at

Communication costs get a hearing

Nadia Samie
9 February 2007

South Africa’s reputation as the country with the highest telecommunication costs may soon be getting the attention it deserves.

In his State of the Nation Address delivered this morning, President Thabo Mbeki said that the Department of Communications, cellphone service providers and Telkom will address call termination rates this year.

Telkom is also expected to apply a special low rate for international bandwith, giving some relief to internet consumers, who have had to put up with increasingly high costs, simply to stay connected.

South Africans have long been complaining about alleged uncompetitive practices by the country’s telecommunication providers.

Cape Town policeman murdered

By Chanel September
9 February 2007

An on-duty constable was fatally wounded during a shooting incident at a Nyanga Police Station.
The 33-year-old constable was busy picking up a reservist colleague for duty. While walking back towards the police vehicle, he was approached by two unknown men.

The men threatened him at gun point and demanded that he hand over his official firearm.

After the constable gave his firearm, one of the suspects fired a shot at him. He sustained a single bullet wound to his head and died on the scene.

The suspects then fled in their vehicle and are still at large.Police have opened cases of murder and robbery for investigation.

Anyone with information can contact Crime stop on 08600 10111.

Thursday, February 08, 2007


State of the Nation Address, Friday, 9 February 2007

On Friday the 9th of February, President Thabo Mbeki will be delivering his State of the Nation Address at Parliament in Cape Town. The following roads will be closed at these times:

10:00 to 10:50
  • Klipper Road, Newlands: from Main Road (M4) to Newlands Avenue
  • Princess Anne Avenue, Newlands: from Newlands Avenue to Union Avenue
  • Newlands Avenue, Newlands: from Dean Street to Princess Anne Avenue
  • Dean Street, Newlands, westbound: from Main Road (M4) to Newlands Avenue
  • M3, Union Avenue, Rhodes Drive, De Waal Drive, City-bound carriageway: from Newlands Avenue to city centre
  • Woolsack Drive, Rondebosch, westbound: between Main Road (M4) and Rhodes Drive (M3)
  • Anzio Road, Observatory: from Main Road (M4) to De Waal Drive (M3)
  • N2, Settlers Way City-bound carriageway: from Main Road (M4) to city centre
  • Eastern Boulevard (N2) City-bound: from Hospital Bend to Table Bay Boulevard (including the Melbourne Road, Roodebloem Road and Searle Street on-ramps)

09:00 to 12:00
  • Hertzog Boulevard: from Eastern Boulevard to Heerengracht
  • Eastern Boulevard: Strand Street off-ramp
  • Strand Street: from Russel Street to Adderley Street
  • Adderley Street: from Hans Strijdom Avenue to Wale Street
  • Heerengracht: between Coen Steytler and Hans Strijdom Avenues
  • Wale Street: between Queen Victoria and Adderley Streets
  • Bureau Street: between Adderley and Parliament Streets
  • Spin Street: between Corporation and Parliament Streets
  • Commercial Street: between Plein and Buitenkant Streets

09:00 to 12:00 and 14:30 to 15:30
  • Plein Street: between Roeland and Spin Streets
  • Roeland Street: between Plein and Buitenkant Streets

Steady progress being made on Cape Flats water maintenance - CoCT

The City of Cape Town says steady progress has been made across the five sites where the municipality’s 72-hour water shutdown on the Cape ...