Sunday, March 31, 2013

1 960 WC drivers caught for exceeding speed limit

Athenkosi Mvane
31 March 2013


The Western Cape Traffic Department held numerous roadblocks during the course of the Easter weekend.

2 200 vehicles were stropped and 1 099 drivers tested for alcohol.

38 drunk drivers were arrested and two people were arrested for driving with fraudulent documents.

Western Cape Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said the total amount of fines they issued was R134 600, and they checked the speed of 21 180 vehicles of which 1 960 drivers were prosecuted for exceeding the speed limit.

“The highest speed recorded so far was 195 km/h in a 120 km/ zone and there were two fatalities on our roads” Africa added.

SANDF awaiting orders to go to DRC

Athenkosi Mvane
31 March 2013


The SA National Defence Force on Friday said it had not yet received a request from the United Nations about the possibility of South Africa deploying soldiers to the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Spokesperson for the defence force, Xolani Mabanga, said if the UN had passed a resolution to that effect, soldiers would wait until they had been given word on whether to go on not to go from the Government.

Mabanga nothing has yet been communicated regarding the UN’s consent about a special force to be deployed.

Mabanga said that the resolution of the UN security council was passed on Friday.

“As of now, the SANDF has not received any instruction, we are awaiting further guidelines from the government authorities” Mabanga added.

SANBS appeal for blood donations

Athenkosi Mvane
31 March 2013


The South African National Blood Services is appealing for blood donations.

SANBS spokesperson Vanessa Raju said they are grateful to people who have already donated blood, but call on more people to donate, as to keep away from a shortage of blood during this period.

Raju said that anyone weighing 50 kg and more, who is above the age of 16 may donate blood.

“If you want to know where you can donate please call 0800 119 031 on our toll-free number during office hours,or visit us on www.sanba.org.za” Raju added.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Former Lions player murdered at home

Athenkosi Mvane
30 March 2013


Police on Friday launched a manhunt for three people suspected of murdering former Lions rugby player Johan Kemp on Thursday.

Kemp was shot  in the upper body on Thursday morning when the suspects forcibly entered his Fontainebleau home Thursday morning.

The police's Lieutenant Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said Kemp’s wife heard shots and went to the bedroom where she found Kemp dead.

Dlamini said Kemp’s wife heard three shots and then the suspects fled the scene.

“The suspects took jewelery and a laptop before they fled; at this stage no one has been arrested, but the investigation continues” Dlamini added.

WC Traffic Department held 12 road blocks on Friday night

Athenkosi Mvane
30 March 2013


The Western Cape Traffic Department held 12 roadblocks on the national and main roads.

1 474 cars were stopped, where 683 drivers were tested for alcohol.

17 drunk drivers were arrested with the highest reading being 1.2mg/l.

One person was arrested for driving with fraudulent documentation and another for reckless driving.

Western Cape Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said that the total amount of fines issued over Friday night was R89 300, and the speed of 9 222 vehicles was tested, of which 703 were charged for exceeding the speed limit.

“The highest speed reading was 195 km/h in a 120 km/h zone on the N1 near Beaufort West, and there was one fatality so far on our roads; a pedestrian that was knocked down last night on the R300 near Bellville” Africa added.

WIVP condemns the presence of the SANDF in CAR

Athenkosi Mvane
30 March 2013


The Workers International Vanguard Party condemns the continued presence of South African troops in the Central African Republic.

It has come to light that in the lead up to the clashes that took place last weekend, which the SA armed forces were low on ammunition and did not have enough food.

They believe that the army is being used misused, whilst the soldiers have a right to object against these illegal orders of being deployed to the CAR.

WIVP Spokesperson Shaheed Mahomed said that the troops are not protecting the people of the CAR, but are protecting American company installations.

“They are protecting empowerment companies like Sasol and Shanduka where the Zuma family and Cyril Ramaphosa have shares, this is how the army is being misused in the CAR” Mahomed added.

Hawks to probe 2012 NWU student drowning

Athenkosi Mvane
30 March 2013


The Student Representative Council of the University of the North West have welcomed a probe by the Higher Education Transformation Net-Work to call Minister of higher education and training into the investigation of a 2012 drowning of Thabang Mokhoang at the Potch Campus in a pool.

HNET said they have a statement made by former security guards at the UNW about the incident, and the Minister called on the HAWKS to investigate.

NWU SRC President Rapeleng Mathsediso said that as the SRC they respect the decision of the council of the NWU to appoint a task team that investigated the case of the drowned student in 2012.

“We are of the view that the current report raises more eyebrows and leaves much to be desired, therefore we want this matter to be put to rest once and for all, in an amicable way so that will also heal the souls of the family of the student in question” Matshediso added.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Community Safety Bill to give provincial government oversight over police

Athenkosi Mvane
29 March 2013


On Wednesday the Western Cape Legislature passed the Western Cape Community Safety Bill which will improve the way in which the provincial government conducts oversight over the police and significantly contribute to increasing community safety.

DA shadow Minister of police Dianne Kohler Barnard said it will also improve community police relations and act as a catalyst for more efficient policing.

Kohler Barnard adds that this is why the DA challenges all ANC run provinces to follow the Western Cape’s lead.

Barnard said that the WC Community Safety Bill will allow provincial government to oversee the effectiveness of the police services and create a formal oversight relationship between the department of community safety and the SAPS.

“This Bill gives the state constitutional oversight responsibility of the province” Kohler Barnard added.

Minister Mthethwa wins appeal against multi-million rands damages case

Athenkosi Mvane
29 March 2013
 
The Police Ministry on Thursday said the Supreme Court of Appeal vindicated the South African Police Service by undoing a multi-million rand damages case.

Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa won an appeal against Fred van der Vyver, who had succeeded in suing the state for spitefully prosecuting him for murdering his girlfriend.

Van der Vyver was implicated to Inge Lotz's 2005 murder, but was found not guilty two years after.

Lotz was found dead in her flat in Stellenbosch.

Minister Mthethwa’s Spokesperson Zweli Mnisi said as the Ministry the welcomed the outcome as the SAPS was false accused of tempering with evidence and evidence.

“We feel that the SAPS was vindicated by this judgement and we gladly welcome it” Mnisi added.

Constitutional Court reverses judgement on no confidence case against President Zuma

Athenkosi Mvane
29 March 2013


The Constitutional Court on Thursday reserved judgement on the case of a motion of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma.  

The judiciary and legislature are separate from government as outlined in the Constitution.

The Democratic Alliance wants the Constitutional Court to overrule a 2012 Western Cape High Court decision against their application. 

DA Spokesperson in the Parliamentary Leader’s office Siviwe Gwarube said that they had made their case that Members of Parliament have the right to the motion of no confidence, having debated in the reasonable time frame and not be subject to any form of political interference.

“We will no await a decision from the Constitutional Court” Gwarube added.

Western Cape Community Safety Bill passed


Mluleki Mrwebi
29 March 2013

On Wednesday the Western Cape Community Safety Bill was passed in the Western Cape Legislature with a significant majority. 

Twenty-three of 36 members of the provincial legislature voted in favour of the bill on Wednesday, which would give the provincial government more control over the police. 

Ministerial Spokesperson for MEC Dan Plato, Greg Wagner said the passing of this bill is important not only for this province but for the country as a whole.

Meanwhile the ANC MPL Khaya Magaxa said the bill would create an inter-governmental conflict between the national and provincial departments. 

Magaxa added that the bill would give authorities the power to call for the removal, transfer, or disciplinary action against the provincial police commissioner. 

The Police Ministry Department refused to comment on the passing of the bill.

Police Ministry Spokesperson Zweli Mnisi said the matter is with their legal team, as they look to challenge the bill in court.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Constable arrested after a safe went missing in Alberton

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 March 2013

A Police Constable has been arrested following the theft of a police safe at Alberton last week.

Five other members including the Station Commander have been suspended with immediate effect for poor management and maladministration.

More arrests and suspensions are imminent. 

Lieutenant Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said the other five members were suspended after it was found that there was money in the safe which was not suppose to be there. 

Home Affairs prepares for the Easter holidays

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 March 2013

Today Home Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor visited the Beitbridge Border Gate as part of the Department’s preparations for the forthcoming Easter holidays.

The department has deployed extra personnel while increasing working hours in a number of ports of entry to deal with the anticipated increased traveler volumes. 

Minister Naledi Pandor said today’s visit was to asses the situation at the Boarder Post.

Pandor further said they have introduced some improvements to the processing policy in order to fast track the large volume of visitors.

Opposition parties call for an inquiry into the troop deployment in CAR

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 March 2013

The Democratic Alliance has called for a full scale Parliamentary inquiry into the real reason troops were sent to the Central African Republic. 

Reports today emerged that the troops were sent to CAR for business interest of certain individuals.

This comes after 13 South African soldiers were killed in the CAR this past weekend and several others injured.

Mosiuoa Lekota, who was the minister who signed the original agreement to send South African troops to the Central African Republic, said the deployment had nothing to do with business interests. 

DA Spokesperson Cameron Arendse said 13 soldiers have lost their lives because of certain businessmen and politicians, with financial interest in CAR.

Arendse further said the DA reiterates its call for a full scale inquiry without any delay.

The African Christian Democratic Party, today echoed the DA`s call for an investigation of the deployment of the troop.

The South African National Defence has confirmed that some soldiers including the wounded, are back home.

Meanwhile, earlier this week the Presidency announced that it had no intention of pulling out the troop from CAR.

Corruption Watch and TAC wait for the outcome of the investigation

Mluleki Mrwebi
28 March 2013

Corruption Watch together with the Treatment Action Campaign on Wednesday said they will have to wait until the end of the year, for the Special Investigation Unit to complete its investigation. 

The SIU is investigating the Gauteng Department of Health on contracts that have been awarded, money misspent and quality of healthcare. 

Corruption Watch Executive Director David Lewis said there was a proposal to lodge an application to the high court to instruct the SIU to hand over the reports of the investigation with the regards to the Gauteng Department of Health but the move was postponed until the end of the year.

Lewis added that the SIU has indicated that their investigation will be completed at the end of the year.

Western Cape traffic to adopt a zero tolerance approach over Easter Weekend

Imogen Vollenhoven
28 March 2013

The Western Cape Traffic authorities today said it will not tolerate any disobedience on the roads during the Easter Weekend.

Provincial Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said on the N1 between Beaufort West and Laingsburg an extra 22 traffic officers and extra high performance vehicles will be activated.

Africa said they will focus on moving violations, following distances reckless and negligent driving, un­-roadworthy vehicles, making sure that vehicles do not obscure other vehicles on the N1 and the adjacent routes from Cape Town to the Eastern Cape.

Africa furthermore added that provincial traffic authorities will apply a zero tolerance on taxi’s especially those travelling from Cape Town to the Eastern Cape.

Colour coded stickers have been introduced for taxi’s for the Easter weekend. 

Africa explains further that they will stop public transport vehicles and make sure that they are not overloaded, that they are roadworthy.

“If they are roadworthy and not over loaded and in order we will place a colour coded sticker on the windscreen of those taxis to indicate to our offices on route to the Eastern Cape that those taxis are in good condition,” said Africa.

Africa also highlighted that this is done so that any officer between Cape Town and the Eastern Cape can stop a taxi and this colour coded sticker will give an indication, as to what time the taxi left Cape Town and whether is was roadworthy and not overloaded.

Two people shot dead in two seperate incidents

Imogen Vollenhoven
28 March 2013

Paramedics attended to a shooting at Mamelodi West, in Pretoria last night, where a man was found dead. 

The cause of the shooting is not known at this stage. 

In another incident paramendcs attended to another shooting incident this time at Windmill Park in Boksburg. 

Police are investigating the cause of the shooting.

Netcare 911’s Santi Steinmann explains that upon their arrival on the scene of both incidents they found that the men had died.

Steimann said that the exact details of the accidents remain subject to police investigation.

DENOSA said services at Healthcare facilities deteriorating

Loyiso Langeni
28 March 2013

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa said the outcome of the audit on the country’s public healthcare facilities is a true reflection of conditions on the ground.

The audit showed that 93 percent of maternity wards do not have functional and essential equipment to keep mothers and the newly born babies safe.

Denosa Spokesperson Sibongile Delihlazo said the relationship between the community and the Health Professionals and facilities is deteriorating to the lowest level.

Delihlazo added that members of the community often believe that nurses and health care workers are often to blame for the wrong doing that occur in health facilities.

Delihlazo further added that they hope that its recommendation outcome of the audit will be taken seriously by the Department of Health in addressing these issues. 

Gauteng Department of Health investigated by the SIU

 Loyiso Langeni
28 March 2013

Corruption Watch together with the Treatment Action Campaign on Wednesday said they will have to wait until the end of the year, for the Special Investigation Unit to complete its investigation.

The SIU is investigating the Gauteng Department of Health on contracts that have been awarded, money misspent and quality of healthcare. 

Corruption Watch Executive Director David Lewis said they will lodge an application to ask the court to extract the SIU to hand the fruit of the investigation to the Gauteng health department.

Lewis added that they do not want to compromise any criminal prosecution.

Two people suffer minor injuries in an accident at Hospital Bend

Lusanda Bill
28 March 2013

Picture taken by: Ian Kolbe

At around 12:35AM today a man in his Ferrari was driving towards Cape Town when he lost control of his vehicle. 

Western Cape Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said it is alleged that the man lost control and his vehicle rolled and landed on the other side of the freeway.

The accident happened at Hospital Bend

Africa added that the vehicle caught alight and burnt out.  The two occupants in the vehicle suffered minor injuries, no deaths were reported.

Missing Adult Alert: Gesant Nordien 19 March 2013

SA Post Office lost R97million due to mail backlog.

Loyiso Langeni
28 March 2013

CEO of South African Post Office Christopher Hlekane said the South African Post Office has significantly reduced the mail backlog.

The backlog has resulted in an income loss of R97 million and R6 million in overtime and expect to clear the remainder of the backlog within a few working days.

This follows the recent strike by Post Office employees. 

Head of Communications for South African Post Office Khulani Qoma said they are trying to sort out all the affected areas and are operating on global time operation.

Qoma added that they will be delivering the last mails within a few days from now.

SADTU embarked on a protest outside WCED.

Imogen Vollenhoven
28 March 2013


The South African Democratic Teachers Union held a picket outside the department of education on Wednesday.

Jonavon Rustin SADTU’s Provincial secretary said the picket is in aid of demands by SADTU to have the Department of Basic Education’s director General Bobby Soobrayan dismissed as he collapsed collective bargaining and is inefficient to run the department of education among other grievances which SADTU feels needs to be addressed.

Rustin explains that they want the Basic education Minister to be dismissed or either do the honourable ting and resign.

Furthermore Rustin said that they are also demanding that the department pay grade 12 markers, smaller class sizes, demanding that schools not be closed in the Western Cape, the provision of growth post to schools and the improvement of infrastructure at working class schools.

Furthermore SADTU’s Western Cape Provincial Chairman Bongani Mcoyana and principle of Sivile Primary school said that they want an immediate answer and if their demands are not met they will be picketing outside the department until their demands are met.

Mcyoyana said that as SADTU they are very serious is these are issues of great importance for the development of schools and to better the education in the country.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The fifth BRICS summit ends on a high note

Mluleki Mrwebi
27 March 2013

Today President Jacob Zuma said he is pleased to see a level of enthusiasm amongst business leaders from the BRICS countries. 

The BRICS Summit comes to an end today with positive outcomes, including the development of a BRICS bank. 

The bank’s formation has largely been described as the crowning achievement of the fifth Brics summit.

The Brics bank will finance infrastructural development and in agreeing on its formation, the emerging economies group has moved from rhetoric to action. 

Zuma said BRICS cooperation towards more productive use of global financial resources can make a positive contribution to addressing this problem.

“We are grateful to our Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors for the work undertaken on the New Development Bank and the Contingent Reserve Arrangement and direct them to negotiate and conclude the agreements which will establish them. We will review progress made in these two initiatives at our next meeting in September 2013” said Zuma.

SJC disappointed by the delays in the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry

Mluleki Mrwebi
27 March 2013

The Social Justice Coalition today said it is disappointed at the constant delay into the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry. 

Last week a man was beaten and burned to death in Khayelitsha and on Sunday a 25-year-old man was beaten and burnt to death and his body was found in a communal toilet by police.

Police Spokesperson Andre Traut said no one has been arrested as yet for these killings.

The commission was established by Premier Helen Zille after residents on Khayelitsha said policing in the area is not effective. 

The Commission was halted when Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa challenged it in court.

The SJC’s Phumeza Mlungwana said it is so sad that the Minister can go to as far as taking the commission to court, to ensure that it does not do its work.

Mlungwana added that the commission was starting to bring hope to the people of Khayelitsha, to see something being done about crime.

WCED budget speech delivered

Athenkosi Mvane
27 March 2013

Today, the Western Cape Education Department MEC Donald Grant delivered the department budget speech.

The Department has a budget of R15.6 billion for the 2013/14 financial year, which showed an increase of above R1.3 billion from the previous year’s budget.

MEC Grant said that the Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism earlier this month said within the Medium Term Expenditure Framework, WCED would receive over a third of the Provincial Budget.

Grant said public school education will remain the main focus of the Department’s funding with 72% of the budget going that direction.

“R37.9 million will be allocated to Adult Basic Education and R351.4 million to our six FET colleges, the Western Cape already leads the country in the provision of special needs education; 5.7% of the budget is allocated to special needs” Grant added.

Meanwhile, MEC Grant said in all major public school systems, most of the funds of the budget would be spent on educators.

The MEC reiterated that teachers are a valuable asset and play an important role in ensuring that learners receive the best possible education and a just opportunity to good lives.

Grant also said R9.5 billion has been put aside towards teachers’ salaries.

“Educator training remains a key component of our strategy, as it directly impacts the delivery of the curriculum to the learner” MEC added.

The teacher component of teacher training and development has increased from R79 million in 2009/10 to R112 million in the 2013/14. 

ANC said Premier Zille’s comments on farm strikes as irresponsible


Athenkosi Mvane
27 March 2013


The African National Congress in the Western Cape said it is disappointed and disturbed by Premier Helen Zille’s comment that a further industrial action on farms is looming. 

ANC Provincial Chairperson Marius Fransman said the comment was very irresponsible. 

ANC’s Phillip Dexter said that at this point, they are trying to ensure dialogue involving the concerned parties, seeing that wage determination has been made.

“These kinds of utterances are unnecessary, frankly speaking, they are probably going to incite industrial actions” Dexter added.

Meanwhile Spokesperson for the Premier Zak Mbhele said the comment was based on the continuous knowledge and reports the Premier received about efforts to make the province ungovernable ahead of the 2014 national and provincial elections. 

Mbhele said that they expect this kind of unrest to happen for certain various players to catalyse that kind of unrest for their own agends.

“We are keeping our ear on the ground and will be acting as needed” Mbhele added.

Another stabbing at Cape Town school

Imogen Vollenhoven
27March 2013

Another school pupil was stabbed at Oscar Mpetha High School in Khayelitsha. 

Western Cape Department of Education confirmed the incident.  The grade 9 pupil was stabbed twice in the stomach and sustained cuts on his head. 

Police are investigating the incident. 

Ministerial Spokesperson Bronagh Casey said is it believed to have stemmed from something that happened over the weekend in the community.

Furthermore Cassey adds that four learners have been apprehended, the learner is still in hospital and the WCED is providing support to the school, through counseling and extra security measures.

Sadtu ready for the trial with Department of Basic Education

Loyiso Langeni
27 March 2013

The Labour Court on Tuesday ruled against the decision of the Minister of Department of Basic Education and her Director-General Bobby Soobrayan to unilaterally withdraw Collective Agreement 1 of 2011.

The South African Democratic Teachers Union together with other unions approached the Labour Court to have the termination of the Agreement declared unfair and unlawful.

Sadtu Secretary General Nkosana Dolopi said the Department failed to file their answering affidavit on time after the matter was set down for hearing on 13 March 2013.

Dolopi added that they are preparing for the full trial that will take three days.

Mthethwa said police brutality not a reflection of the whole police service

Loyiso Langeni
27 March 2013

Today Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa said certain action of individual officers of police brutality is not a reflection of the whole police service. 

Mthethwa said there is a big problem with a command and control within the service. 

Ministerial Spokesperson Zweli Mnisi said in the fight against crime they work as a collective with the Hawks. They want the community to address the officers who behaviours in an improper manner.    

Meanwhile the Democratic Alliance on Tuesday said it is disappointed at the Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa’s action. 

According to the DA the Police Minister asked to brief the Portfolio Committee on Police on the recent media reports of police brutality but he came empty handed.

DA Shadow Minister of Police Dianne-Kohler Barnard said the statement the Minister made lacked details.

Kohler Barnard added that this is not the first that he has failed to answer the questions by members of the Parliament.  

Local Government Budget vote speech focuses on achievements and the way forward

Imogen Volllenhoven
27 March 2013

 

Western Cape Local government MEC Anton Bredell on Tuesday delivered the budget vote speech for local government.

This is the fourth budget vote since the establishment of the department of local government.

MEC Bredell highlighted the department’s achievements, progress and challenges during 2013/14, as well as what the department of local government will be undertaking going forward.

Bredall said that it is their responsibility to monitor whether municipalities are being governed well and to strengthen this, Bredell will tabling and enacting legislation that gives grit to section 106 of the municipalities systems act later this year.

Furthemore Bredell also added that one other milestone the department has achieved includes the development of Thusong locations plans for ever district.

Bredell explains that now 83% of residents in the province currently have access to a Thusong Zone, centre, satellite, mobile or extension service.

“This makes accessing government services simpler and easier for more citizens,” said Bredell.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The fifth BRICS summit underway

Mluleki Mrwebi
26 March 2013

South Africa is hosting a two day Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa Summit, from today and tomorrow.

The Fifth BRICS summit is held at the Durban International Convention Centre.

Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davis said these summits are convened to seek common ground on areas of importance for these major economies.

Davis said talks represent spheres of political and entrepreneurial coordination, in which member countries have identified several business opportunities and areas of cooperation.

Davis added that this will build a partnership that will help in job creation and trade relations with other countries.

Man’s body found in a toilet in Khayelitsha

Mluleki Mrwebi
26 March 2013

A 25-year-old man was beaten and burned to death and then dumped in a communal toilet in Section 40 Makaza, Khayelitsha.

It is alleged that the man was trying to break into a shack when he was caught and attacked by a group of men, on Sunday night. 

Police found his body in the toilet. 

Police Spokesperson Andre Traut said police from Harare Police station are investigating the circumstances around the man’s death.

Traut said no one has been arrested as yet and the investigation continues.

The province, in the last two years has had a number of incidents of mob justice in areas, such as Gugulethu, Phillipi, Nyanga and Khayelitsha.

Residents beat and set alight suspected criminals and that had led to the establishment of a commission to investigate police inefficiency in Khayelitsha.


The commission of inquiry which was established by Premier Helen Zille, has been taken to the Constitutional Court by the Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa, after his attempt to halt the commission was overruled by the Western Cape High Court.  

The fight against Highway Toll project strengthens

Mluleki Mrwebi
26 March 2013

The City of Cape Town has obtained a court date to interdict the construction of the N1/N2 Winelands Highway project.

The Democratic Alliance has welcomed the move by the City of Cape Town and says this means that South African National Roads Agency Limited will not be able to commence with work on the project.

DA Leader in the province Ivan Meyer said the DA will fight the implementation of toll roads in the province.

Meyer said the implementation of the project will incur cost to the poor people and the people were not properly consulted with the planning of the project.

Meyer added that the total costs and the financial implications of the whole project are not clear and Sanral has not come clean with this.

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 ...