Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Agri SA:Government must take responsibility

Andiswa Mkosi
31 July 2012

The government must take responsibility and act against the wave of poor administration and corruption at all government levels including agriculture.

This is according to Agri SA.

Agri SA’s deputy director, Johan Pienaar, says the organisation nevertheless understands the challenges that government faces regarding land reform.

He says the Green Paper on land reform is being driven in a responsible manner and Agri SA wants to remain part of the process.

Durban tourists pulled from water

Andiswa Mkosi31 July 2012

In Durban eleven German tourists had to be pulled from the water off the Sun Coast Casino after the vessel they were on overturned in the surf this afternoon.

According to Netcare it seems they were out on a whale watching trip when a wave hit the boat from the side and flipped it.

Lifeguards who went to their rescue realized that two tourists were still missing.

They found them trapped in an air pocket inside the upturned boat.

Zuma says there will be zero tolerance for wrong doers

Andiswa Mkosi31 July 2012

President Jacob Zuma has stated that there will be consequences for anyone found responsible for any wrongdoing in the Limpopo textbook crisis.

Zuma assured the public today that the matter was being attended to at the highest level.

He says this is being done as education is an apex priority of government.

According to the President, a report from the task team led by Deputy Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene should be finalised soon.

Cape Town bosses blamed for lack of service delivery

Andiswa Mkosi
31 July 2012

A community leader from Sweet Home Farm near Philippi said residents took to the streets on Monday because of their frustration with Cape Town City bosses.

Nine people were arrested and charged with public violence.

Residents are claiming that the City of Cape Town has abandoned them and their needs.

Spokesperson for Mayor Patricia De Lille, Solly Malatsi says the Cape Town administration cares deeply about about the plight of its residents.

He says one of the 5 key pillars of the Cape Town is management is to build a caring City that is able to provide services.

WCED-High school drop out rate is alarming

Mluleki Mrwebi
31 July 2012

The Western Cape Department of Education is concerned about the high school drop out rate.

In the first six months of this year 2, 400 Western Cape learners have dropped out of high school. 

The Western Cape Education MEC Donald Grant said that many of the learners enrol in further education training colleges or relocate to other areas in the country.

Departmental Spokesperson Bronagh Casey Said that the results show that out of the number of learners enrol for grade one about 55,8% drop out before they complete their matric.

WC Police Commissioner determined to fight corruption in the force

Mluleki Mrwebi
31 July 2012

The Western Cape Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer has stated that his office is taking a strong approach to rooting out corruption within the force. 

This follows a report done by criminologist Lisa Grobler about police conspiracy with criminals. 

Lamoer said that the report was not aimed at exposing police office at large only the rotten ones.

He also said that in the first six months of this year about 22 police officers have arrested.

Lamoer added that the allegations in that report are nothing new.

Metrorail services to improve

Mluleki Mrwebi
31 July 2012

The Regional Manager of Metrorail in the Western Cape Mthuthuzeli Swartz today said that since the launch of the regional Programme of Action in June this year, Metrorail services have improved. 

Swartz said that there is still a lot of work to be done with regards to illegal trading, smoking in trains and begging.  

Swartz further said that they now in the process of increasing security on the trains.

He added that since the programme was launched they have seen a 14% reduction of crime on their trains.

A call for more houses to be built in townships

Mluleki Mrwebi
31 July 2012

Freedom Front Plus`s Andre Fourie last week brought before the Council a proposal to appoint a committee to plan a second Mitchell’s Plain and Khayelitsha. 

Fourie said that a second Mitchells Plain is needed to house the residents of 250 informal settlements and a quarter of the residents of Sweet Home Farm.

A second Mitchells Plain will be around the Milnerton area. 

Councillor Ganief Hendricks said that it is very important for the informal settlements residents to be relocated in proper homes.

Hendricks added that the lives of the residents will change. 

Ethics play a role in our country’s development

Florentia Roman
31 July 2012

Respect for the law, policies and regulations is the first step to beating corruption, bad service delivery and a malfunctioning education system in South Africa.

Ethics Institute of South Africa’s Deon Rossouw explained that it is the only way the country can move forward.

He adds that too many public figures hide behind the law or regulations and refuse to take responsibility for their failures.

Rossouw uses the example of the Limpopo textbook crisis, saying there needs to be consequences for non-performance.

More employment opportunities

Florentia Roman
31 July 2012

Twenty nine temporary employment opportunities for local residents will be created through the creation of a polluter. 

In June 2008 a property owner cleaned out his septic tank after this had become blocked due to heavy rains. 

During the clean-up operations an estimated 200 litres of diesel and oil was spilled and washed into the adjacent property. 

This resulted in the borehole water which was used for drinking becoming contaminated. 

Department of Water Affairs spokesperson Aziel Gangerdine said the after the department stepped in, and the owner will now spend
R452 000 to rehabilitate the land.

Solidarity petitioning in Cape Town

Florentia Roman
31 July 2012

Today Solidarity will be petitioning outside the Cape Town High Court. 

This follows one of its members who contracted a hepatitis virus at his workplace. 

The matter was reported to the Compensation Commissioner however the result was unsatisfactory. 

Now the case has been referred to the High Court. 

Solidarity’s Head of Occupational Health and Safety Advocate Paul Mardon said there main concern is whether it is fact a occupational disease or not.

DA launches job creation campaign

Andiswa Mkosi
31 July 2012

The Democratic Alliance has launched a job creation  campaign, as the first step in its election campaign for the national election in 2014.

DA Leader Helen Zille says it is no secret that the party is aiming to target Gauteng in the next election.

Spokesperson Pierre-Charl du Preez says the DA has unveiled their first campaign billboard next to the
Soweto Highway

Charl added that the focus is now on education.

Monday, July 30, 2012

City of Cape Town calls on the public for help

Andiswa Mkosi 30 July 2012

The City of Cape is now planning to pay people to rat on their family and friends who owe traffic fines.

Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith said the city plans to release the names of the top 100 traffic offenders.

There are rewards from 2 000-Rands to 10 000-Rands for information that will lead to their arrests.

JP Smith says every year when one has to renew their vehicle details some people register false details.

He added that they are calling on the public to come forward if they have any information.

24 drivers arrested over the weekend

Andiswa Mkosi
30 July 2012

This past weekend’s alcohol blitz roadblocks across the Western Cape saw a total of one-thousand-nine-hundred and eighty five thousand vehicles being stopped.

This is part of the Provincial Governments Safely Home Campaign.

1 076 drivers were screened for being under suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol resulting in 24 arrests.

MEC of Community Safety Dan Plato said they plan to halve road deaths in province by 2012.

Unknown Deceased Child

De Lille accuses ANC of stirring up protests

Andiswa Mkosi
30 July 2012

Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille has accused the ANC of stoking protests in the city for political reasons.

Violent confrontations between demonstrators and police erupted in Philippi and Mitchel’s Plain this morning.

Protestors damaged infrastructure causing peak hour traffic chaos.

De Lille acknowledges that there are legitimate grievances but says millions-of-Rands have to be spent on fixing.

Home Affairs officials are accused not following the court order

Mluleki Mrwebi
30 July 2012

A non-governmental Organisation Scalabrini Centre won a High Court interdict last week, saying Customs House should help foreigners with their applications.

The rights group People against Suffering Oppression and Poverty claims home affairs officials are not complying with a court order.

The Director of Passop Braam Hanekom said that it appears that the Department of Home Affairs is implementing the court order.

Hanekom further said that they will be monitoring the department from now onwards.

Cape Town Police are in search of murder suspect

Mluleki Mrwebi
30 July 2012

Police are investigating the murder of two men one a suspected 28’s gang leader. 

The men were shot dead in a drive by shooting in Elsies River at the weekend.

It is believed the men were sitting outside a hair salon when they were approached by two men who opened fire and fled the scene.

 Warrant Officer November Filander said that the police have opened an attempted murder and murder case.

The DA`s growth plan critisised

Mluleki Mrwebi
30 July 2012

The African National Congress in the Western Cape says the Democratic Alliance`s new economic growth plan is generic and without initiative or imagination.

The DA launched the plan on Saturday.

ANC`s Cobus Grobler said that this plan leads nowhere.

Grobler added that this plan is not a solution to the problems that this country is facing.

Dance teacher appears in court

Mluleki Mrwebi
30 July 2012

A dancer teacher who allegedly raped young girls has had his day in court this morning.

A young girl living in Khayelitsha claims that she was raped after a dance class in 2010.

Angy Peter from the Social Justice Coalition said that the suspect faces 21 counts of Rape.

Peter said that the suspect had included one of the children in his funeral cover.

Khayelitsha under police monitoring

Florentia Roman
30 July 2012

Police are monitoring parts of Khayelitsha after a gang reportedly caused havoc in the area on Sunday night.

Reportedly the gang of around 50 armed youths entered the Greenpoint area in the township.

They then forced their way into homes in search of rival gang members.

According a report, some residents fired at the gang, but no-one was wounded.

The gang also apparently threatened to disrupt schools in the area.
Police spokesperson November Filander said that there were no cases registered thus far.

DlaminiZuma addresses women

Florentia Roman
30 July 2012

Home Affairs Minister and AU Commission Chairperson Dr Nkosazana DlaminiZuma on Sunday addressed Women at the Pretoria City Hall on her role as the AU Commission chairperson.

The address came in light of inquiries made by many women in South Africa on what her role entails and what it means to the African women in general. 

The Minister called upon all the women across Africa to support her in executing her responsibilities.

Home Affairs Minister and AU Commission Chairperson Dr Nkosazana DlaminiZuma said Africa has much opportunity as the continents economy continues to grow

25 Busses impounded

Florentia Roman
30 July 2012

The Road Traffic Management Corporation together with the Johannesburg Metro Police carried out an operation over weekend in Johannesburg and about 25 busses were impounded.

RTMC Spokesperson Ashref Ismail said the PUTCO busses were discontinued from service after their investigation.

He added that the main reason for their discontinuation is because of faulty brakes, defective tearing mechanisms and excessive oil and engine leaks.

The vehicles after repairs have been made will be re-checked before they will be allowed back onto the road.

One person died in a shack fire

Mluleki Mrwebi
30 July 2012

A shack fire in Hout Bay left one person dead.

The fire occurred at the Imizamo Yethu informal settlement on Sunday morning.

Disaster Management's Wilfred Solomons-Johannes said that the cause of the fire is not known and thepolice are investigating.

Solomons-Johannes said that the decesed has not been identified.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

A man`s body found at a Beach

Mluleki Mrwebi
29 July 2012

A body of a man was found at Blouberg Beach on Saturday morning.
Western Cape Police Spokesperson November Filander said that the man has been identified as Waldo Vernandez.

Filander said that the 48-year-old Doctor is presumed to have drowned.

He added that an inquest docket has been opened.

Cope MP to face disciplinary hearing

Mluleki Mrwebi
29 July 2012

The Congress of the People MP Dirk Feldman will to face a multi-party disciplinary hearing.

Earlier this month Feldman was part of a parliamentary delegation that was visited India.

It is alleged Feldman tried to open the exit door of an SAA flight while intoxicated.

The investigation is on and Feldman has promised to co-operate.

The Parliament has now referred the matter to the National Council of Provinces. 

Minister Edna Molewa approves the recruitment of new rangers

Mluleki Mrwebi
29 July 2012

The rate of rhino poaching in the country has forced the South African National Parks to strengthen the fight against rhino poaching.

Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa is happy with the recruitment of 150 new rangers.

Molewa said that this will ensure efficient patrols around the parks.

Corporations and law enforcement agencies have joined the fight.

25 Putco busses discontinued

Mluleki Mrwebi
29 July 2012

The Road Traffic Management Corporation and Johannesburg metro police stopped 45 buses between Kya Sands and Randburg on Saturday and found critical faults in 25 of them.

RTMC Spokesperson Ashref Ismail said that the 25 Putco buses were discontinued.

Ismail said that these busses had their license discs pulled and will have to be proved roadworthy before they can be allowed back on the road.

He added that this is an ongoing operation to ensure that public passenger transport is safe.

One person died in a fire

Mluleki Mrwebi
29 July 2012

A fire in Richards Bay left the child dead and the mother severely burnt.

The two were trapped in the burning house this morning.

Netcare 911 Spokesperson Chris Botha said that after the fire was extinguished the body of a child, presumed to be a boy was found burnt beyond recognition.

Botha said the woman was transported to hospital in a critical.

He added that the cause of the fire is not known at this stage.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Unions and Salga reach an agreement

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 July 2012

The three months long wage negotiations between the South African Municipal Workers' Union and the South African Local Government Association came to an end.

Salga has agreed to a six-and-a-half-percent wage increase as part of a three-year wage agreement.

The Unions were demanding a 15-percent increase and employers were only offering four-percent.

The Unions were threatening to embark on a national strike had a deal not been secured within three weeks. 

DA launches a job campaign

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 July 2012

The Democratic Alliance today launched its job campaign in Freedom Park, Pretoria.

DA Leader Hellen Zille said that the African National Congress has been extending economic apartheid by maintaining "the wall" between haves and have-nots.

Zille said that economy was separated between insiders and outsiders.

Zille added that the outsiders are the poor people who do not have jobs.

She further said no country has ever beaten unemployment and poverty without a healthy economy growth.

The fight against rhino poaching tightens

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 July 2012

The SA National Parks today said that new initiatives have been launched to intensify the fight against rhino poaching in South Africa.

SANParks Spokesperson Reynold Thakhuli said that anti-poaching techniques had improved as corporations and law enforcement agencies joined the fight.

Thakhuli said that the initiatives include the use of specially trained dogs linked to global positioning systems.

He added that there is also the utilisation of a rhino horn DNA database and an increased number of game rangers.

Meanwhile the Hawks are still investigating the killing of a rhino in the Southern Cape.

Southern Cape Police Spokesperson Malcom Pojie said that the body of a rhino was found on a smallholding in Da gama`s Kop on Wednesday.

The ANC Lekgotla to focus on Education

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 July 2012

The African National Congress National Executive Committee lekgotla is scrutinising the state of education in the country.

The party`s Spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said that their main focus on this three day lekgotla focuses on education in Limpopo.

Mthembu further said other provinces will also be looked at.

The lekgotla began on Friday.

Mthembu added that the lekgotla will also review the party’s successes and failures, and decide what should be prioritised in the next 12 months.

Four injured in an accident in Brackenfell

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 July 2012

Four people sustained various injuries on Friday following a serious collision on the N1 highway under the R300 Bridge.

The collision involved a total of four vehicles which collided with one another. 

ER24` Andre Visser said that a Toyota Hillux Bakkie collided into the rear of the other car.

Visser said that two men were entrapped in one vehicle and one of them had sustained serious head injuries.

He added that the men were transported to Hospital for further treatment.

Another children’s hospital to be built

Florentia Roman
28 July 2012

The Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund today announced a new state of the art children’s hospital to be built in Johannesburg.

NMCF trustee Nana Magomola said about 300 children died a year, not because of a shortage of doctors, but due to a lack of facilities dedicated to the care of children. 

The country has only one children's hospital, in Cape Town.

She said the hospital had raised about a quarter of the estimated One Billion-Rand price tag for initial the construction.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Eight arrested in another drug bust

Florentia Roman
27 July 2012

Three of the eight people arrested in connection with a 100 million-Rand drug bust were released by a court Friday.

The remaining five suspects will apply for bail on Monday when their case resumes.

On Wednesday, Crime Intelligence officers raided two luxury homes in Bryanston and Douglasdale, north of Johannesburg.

They seized mandrax, chemicals and equipment allegedly used to manufacture drugs. Police spokesperson Vish Naidoo said two domestic workers and the gardener were released.

He said it could not be proved that the three suspects were involved in the manufacturing or distribution of drugs.

Counterfeit cigarettes destroyed

Florentia Roman
27 July 2012

Western Cape customs officials today destroyed thousands of counterfeit cigarettes.  

The cigarettes, which are estimated to be worth 4 million-Rand, were destroyed on a farm outside Atlantis.  

It is believed around 80 percent of illicit cigarettes coming into South Africa are from Zimbabwe.  

South African Revenue Service spokesperson Adrian Lackay said they want to put a stop to the trade. 

Meanwhile, more than 16 million illegal cigarettes were seized across the country in May.

Police make another abalone bust

Andiswa Mkosi27 July 2012

Western Cape police today arrested two men for being in possession of abalone.

The arrest took place on the N2 between Caledon and Riviersonderend.

Warrant Officer November Filander said police found about 20 bags of abalone with the two suspects.

Filander added that the police do not know the street value of the abalone as police are still counting.

The suspects are expected to appear in court soon.

ANCYL voice their concern in protest

Florentia Roman
27 July 2012

This afternoon thousand of people including the ANC Youth League, COSATU and community members gathered in Cape Town.

They marched to the Parliament building in attempt to have Premier Helen Zille abolish youth subsidies among other key issues that were raised.

ANC’s Nelani Sotashe expressed their concern about the youth subsidy, unequal education and lack of jobs in the province.

He added that if the Premier did not meet their demands, they will find a way to make the province ungovernable.

Two men caught in possession of Cocaine worth R252 million in Still Bay

Two men appeared in the Riversdale Magistrate’s Court on Monday after being found in possession of cocaine valued at R252 million. Picture: ...