Thursday, March 31, 2022

Khayelitsha District Hospital excluded in the Health Department Budget

The Western Cape Health Department has been criticized for failing to make provision for an additional R150 million in its 2022/23 budget which was tabled on Tuesday for the Khayelitsha District Hospital.

The ANC in the legislature expressed disappointment at what it said was the department’s “blatant refusal” to make the additional funds available to the hospital despite an emphatic plea from the chief executive, hospital management and the board.

An ANC-led oversight visit to the hospital in January identified structural challenges affecting the quality of care, including a chronic shortage of staff and beds which resulted in patients sleeping on the floor.

During his presentation to the standing committee on health last month, the hospital’s CEO, David Binza, said about R157m was required to address staff shortages.

Binza added that 369 posts were needed, which included clinical support staff and allied health services posts.

 Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi


Wednesday, March 30, 2022

GEPF WC offices relocates to Buitengracht Centre

The Western Cape regional office of the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF) is relocating to new premises. The office, previously located at Thibault Square, Standard Bank Building in Long Street, Cape Town, will start operating from the Buitengracht Centre at 125 Buitengracht Street from Thursday.

The GEPF is Africa’s largest pension fund with more than 1.2 million active members and over 473 000 pensioners and beneficiaries. It is a defined benefit fund that manages pensions and related benefits on behalf of government employees that currently boast assets worth more than R2.09 trillion.

 ‘’The new premises have a much bigger working area and office space; thus, the walk-in service center will be able to accommodate more people inside as opposed to clients queueing in the streets where they are often forced to contend with the harsh elements and may potentially be exposed to threats to their safety,’’ said GEPF Branch Manager in the Western Cape, Mario Johns.

GEPF’s operating hours are from 07:00 to 16:00 weekdays, and has nine walk-in centers and seven satellite offices across South Africa


Courtesy: GEPF

Done By: Mitchum George

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NA speaker agrees to DA's request for roll-call during motion of no confidence in Cabinet

National Assembly Speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, has agreed to a request by the Democratic Alliance (DA), for a roll-call voting procedure during voting on the motion of no confidence in the Cabinet, excluding the President.

Opposition party leader, John Steenhuisen wrote to Mapisa-Nqakula last week to ask that ministers, not be allowed to vote in themotion and that the voting is done by roll-call.

‘’According to the Rules on virtual sittings, Members are entitled to cast their votes either electronically, by voice or by having their votes recorded by their respective Whips. In this regard, the Speaker has confirmed that a manual roll-call voting procedure will be used for the voting on the motion. This will entail the question being put for a decision of the House, followed by the Secretary calling each Member, and each Member voicing either "yes" or "no" on the question,’’ said parliament spokesperson, Moloto Mothapo.

He added that Mapisa-Nqakula has received a belated response from the ATM declining to withdraw its motion instead of postponing it.

‘’The motion will therefore remain on tomorrow's (Wednesday’s) agenda of the House as scheduled by the National Assembly's Programme Committee,’’ said Mothapo


PICTURED - Twitter: John Steenhuisen

Done By: Mitchum George


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NA speaker declines ATM's request to postpone motion of no confidence in President Ramaphosa

National Assembly Speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, has declined the request of the African Transformation Movement (ATM) to have its motion of no confidence against President Cyril Ramaphosa, scheduled for Wednesday, postponed, pending the outcome of its court challenge to the Speaker's decision for its motion to be conducted by an open ballot.

‘’The Speaker advised the ATM that, as the power to postpone items on the agenda of the Assembly resided with the National Assembly Programming Committee, she could not unilaterally accede to their request.’’

 The Speaker referred the ATM to Rule 90, that of anticipation, that provides, amongst others, that no member may anticipate the discussion of a matter appearing on an order paper or agreed upon by the Programme Committee for scheduling.

The Western Cape High Court, on Monday, struck its application from the roll after it failed to prove urgency.

Mapisa-Nqakula has already declined the party’s request for a closed vote.

Parliament spokesperson Moloto Mothapo says the motion will go ahead on Wednesday.

‘’In this regard, the implication of the ATM's motion is that it will remain on the Order Paper, thereby blocking other similar motions. The Speaker has a duty to protect the rights of other parties to move motions of no confidence in the President.’’

‘’Rule 128 provides for the withdrawal and resubmission of a motion, ensuring no other party/member will be prejudiced by a motion remaining in an order paper for an undetermined period. The Speaker had given the ATM until 15:00 to indicate their decision in the light of her advise, and there was no response received from the party by the deadline,’’ added Mothapo.

 Both the motions of no confidence in the President and in the cabinet, will be debated at 14h00 on Wednesday.


PICTURED - Parliament: National Assembly Speaker, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula

Done By: Mitchum George

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Yanga Endrey Nyalara sought for number of crimes committed in Cape Town

Western Cape police are seeking the assistance of the public to trace 30-year-old Yanga Endrey Nyalara, also known as Bara, who is wanted for a number of serious and violent crimes perpetrated in Khayelitsha and Cape Town, as far back as 2016.


‘’Nyalara’s crime spree started in Cape Town during 2016 where he was involved in a business robbery, and is wanted on charges of murder, attempted murder, assault, and possession of an unlicensed firearms which were committed between 2018 and 2022 in Khayelitsha. Nyalara is also sought for a cash-in-transit robbery perpetrated in Libode in the Eastern Cape during 2018. There is a possibility that he could also be in the Eastern Cape, or other parts of the country.’’ said Colonel Andrè Traut.

Traut confirmed that warrants for his arrests have been issued, adding that Nyalara is considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached.

Anyone who sees Nyalara are urged to contact Lieutenant Colonel Victor Norman Galant on 0824691539, and Detective Sergeant Shaun Fortuin on 0679289687. Alternatively, you can contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111


Done By: Mitchum George   

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Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Father finds 2 year son behind toilet dead

Eight days after an Empangeni toddler went missing, he has been found dead.

According to KZN police, Nkosenhle Lwandile Ndimande’s lifeless body was found this morning by his father.

Police said, two-year-old boy was playing outside the house with another child at Bomvini area near Empangeni when he went missing on Human Rights Day

According to the police spokesperson Thembeka Mbele, the father went to investigate a bad smell coming from behind the toilet. On investigation, she added, the father noticed a big stone which he removed, and discovered the body of his son.

An inquest docked was opened at the local police station for further investigation.

by Everngelista Muza

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City of Cape shocked over fatal shooting at city's workers

A City of Cape Town staff member working at the municipal wastewater treatment facility was killed while another wounded. The shooting incident took place at the Athlone Water Treatment Centre, on Monday.

According to police spokesperson Captain Frederick Van Wyk said that a 49-year-old woman was fatally shot, while a 39-year-old woman was shot in the left shoulder. He further stated that SAPS memebers are investigating the circumstances surrounding the shooting incident.

Van Wyk said the victims were taken to a nearby medical facility for medical treatment. A murder and three attempted murder cases are under investigation.

According to the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation, Zahid Badroodien the attack traumatised collegeased and the circumstances of the killing are under investigation by the appropriate services

by Everngelista Muza

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Unemployment rate increases to 35.3% in fourth quarter of 2021

Joblessness among South Africans continues to climb with the unemployment rate having increased from 34.9% to 35.3% in the fourth quarter of 2021.

Statistics South Africa’s latest Quarterly Labour Force Survey has revealed that the number of employed persons increased by 262 000 to 14.5 million, and the number of unemployed persons also increased by 270 000 to 7.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2021 compared to the third quarter of 2021.

According to the expanded definition, unemployment decreased by 0.4 percentage points to 46.2% in the fourth quarter of last year.

Economist at Econometrix, Laura Campbell has said,that“The broader trend that they are seeing in the economy is that it’s becoming ever more capital intensive at the expense of millions in the labour markets searching for jobs, and that  this is likely a sign off restrictive labour market conditions that encourage workers to keep pushing for higher wages which are above their productivity.

Campbell added that Structural reforms especially those related to education and labour market rigidity are needed urgently to reverse this debilitating trend of economic growth.

Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi

Suspect arrested for the murder of six people claims to have alibi

The man arrested in connection with the recent mass in Enkanini informal settlement made a brief appearance in the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

35 year old Thando Shuba, has been charged for the murder of six people, he is alleged to have be involvement in the mass killing on March 20, which prompted the police minister to deploy law enforcement officers in the area.

Shuba’s attorney, Phindile Vepile told the court that his client has an alibi, video footage showing proof that he was in a different location at the time of the shooting.

According to Magistrate Yusuf Kamedien Shuba needed his alibi confirmed before a bail application could proceed.

“If you have an alibi, it is the State that must corroborate that alibi. If they determine the alibi, then it’s not you because you can’t be at two places at the same time and then they must withdraw,” he said.

NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said: “The case has been postponed to April 4 to confirm bail information, as well as to verify his alibi. We’ll see when we come back whether we will oppose bail, but it is very likely because it is a schedule 6 offence.”

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Monday, March 28, 2022

Operation Dudula's Leader granted Bail


Operation Dudula leader Nhlanhla "Lux" Dlamini has been granted bail of R1,500.

Dlamini appeared in the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court on charges of housebreaking, theft and defeating the ends of justice after Victor Ramerafe laid a criminal complaint following a raid on his home by the vigilante group.

Ramorafe claimed members of Dudula stormed his home and assaulted him after accusing him of being a drug dealer.

Dlamini has been ordered to hand over his passport and not to make contact with the complainant.

Earlier, a large crowd of his supporters demonstrated outside court over what they said was his unfair arrest.

The case has been postponed to 27 May.

Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi

Athlone Vaccination Centre of Hope Drive-through officially closed its doors

The Western Cape’s Health Department closed the Athlone Vaccination Centre of Hope Drive-through on Saturday.

This was the first drive-through vaccination service in the province since it officially opened on 3 September 2021

In a statement, the department said the Athlone Stadium mass vaccination site was no longer maintaining the envisioned vaccination results as the Department has made vaccinations accessible to all communities.

‘’…made vaccinations accessible to all communities by creating pop-up vaccination sites in residential areas and to homeless clients, home vaccinations to bedridden clients, taking the vaccine to work environments, and schools, vaccinating at SASSA pay points, and shopping malls and centres including the Vaxi Taxi services which are being utilized in many other residential areas in the metro. The vaccination services have been integrated into healthcare facilities for ease of access and can be accessed at all community day centres and 24-hour health centres in the Klipfointein and Mitchells Plain area. There are fixed vaccination sites in communities and social mobilizing teams encouraging and educating people in residential areas to get vaccinated.’’

The mass vaccination site was a contractual agreement between the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape Government, and administered close to 81 000 vaccinations since its opening.

The Drive-through had ten vaccination stations including EVDS registration set up which accommodated all modes of transport from vehicles, taxis, work vans, motorcycles, bicycles, mini-vans with family bubbles to horse and cart.

“Saturday 26 March 2022 marked another important milestone in the Western Cape Government Health’s vaccination programme as we officially closed the Athlone Vaccination Centre of Hope. I would like to thank the staff of the Athlone site, the role the City of Cape Town colleagues played in assisting in getting the mass site operational and all staff in the province for their dedication to ensuring that our citizens are vaccinated to protect them against COVID-19,” says Dr Saadiq Kariem, Deputy General, Western Cape Government Health. 

“Since the opening of the Athlone Vaccination Centre of Hope Walk-through on 17 August 2021 and then the Drive-through on 3 September 2022, a total of 80 649 people were vaccinated at both the Walk-through and Drive-through combined,” added Dr Kariem.



Done By: Mitchum George

City of Cape Town estimates damages well over R4 million following taxi strike

The City of Cape Town suffered a loss of R275 000, damage to private vehicles was estimated to R380 000 and Golden Arrow suffered a loss of R3.5m.

This comes after last weeks protest led by members of two of the Cape’s biggest taxi associations Cata and the Codeta.

The protest was in response to a grievance against the treatment from the provincial government. The associations handed over a memorandum to Premier Alan Winde to address the issues.

The City’s mayoral committee member for safety and security, Alderman JP Smith, said Initial assessments after Thursday’s destructive taxi protest indicate that infrastructure damage runs well over R4 million.

by Everngelista Muza

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Suspect arrested in connection with Khayelitsha killings

Western Cape police arrested a 35-year-old in connection with the murder of six people who were shot and killed in the Enkanini informal settlement on 20 March 2022.

‘’As the investigation gains momentum the detectives assigned to the case have their sights set on specific leads with more arrests imminent,’’ said Brigadier Novela Potelwa.

The suspect is expected to appear in the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s court on Monday.

Meanwhile, the Western Cape’s Acting Community Safety MEC, Anroux Marais, welcomed the arrest.

“We are indeed grateful for this breakthrough and that progress has been made in this ongoing investigation. The suspect’s arrest does offer some consolation. We will track the case in court, through our Court Watching Briefs and will also follow up with the South African Police Service (SAPS) to monitor progress and get the relevant CAS number.”

‘’The Western Cape Government wholeheartedly thanks the SAPS and partners in safety for their work in this matter. We offer our support, through the Department of Community Safety, to them as needs be, so that we can ensure that a thorough investigation is conducted so that the suspect(s) faces the full might of the law,’’ she added.



Done By: Mitchum George

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Saturday, March 26, 2022

Transport MEC studying CATA, CODETA memorandum; ''disturbed'' by violent protest

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has less than a week to respond to the memorandum of grievances of local taxi associations.

CODETA and CATA members marched to Winde’s offices on Thursday.

Transport & public works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell, says he’s disturbed by Thursday’s violent protest, adding that he is ‘’studying the memorandum that was handed over to the Western Cape Government (on Thursday), but will not allow the other events of the day to go unchallenged.’’

Mitchell says he has met with the South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO) and have requested it to take action against the CATA region. He further condemned the violent actions which included the torching of buses, intimidation of other operators and the disruption of travel routes.

‘’This is criminal behaviour that should be addressed by the South African Police Service (SAPS). We will not tolerate this kind of flagrant disregard for the law. This is a threat against the provincial government and the people of the Western Cape.’’

The MEC says he has instructed officials in his department to launch various actions, including:

1.   Drafting a notice to declare the Nyanga area a high risk in respect of taxi violence.

2.   Compliance notices – The Office of the Registrar has sent out notices to all associations to comply with the Code of Conduct and Standard Constitution for minibus taxis, following the unrest in Nyanga.

‘’All associations are required to act against any misconduct perpetrated by their members and drivers. Operators and drivers are not permitted to intimidate or threaten any person. We will have no hesitation to suspend or deregister associations and/or members who violate any relevant statutory prescripts,’’ said Mitchell.

3.   Suspension of the Special Regulatory Process – The MEC says it will suspend this process for all CODETA and CATA-affiliated associations should the violence continue. Mitchell met with the City of Cape Town who agreed to the terms.

‘’This means that no new operating licences will be issued to members of these associations until the suspension is lifted.

4.   Red status – Blue Dot project – Given the ongoing violence, a decision has been taken to place the CATA and CODETA regions in red status.

‘’This means that no project payments will be made to these regions until such time that they act to get their members and drivers to refrain from violent behaviour and damage to property.’’

5.   Cancellation of operating licences –Mitchell threatened to cancel operating licences, where operators and drivers have violated the conditions under which those operating licences were issued.

6.    Ongoing dialogue


Mitchell has condemned the incident, thanking those operators who transported commuters, despite the protest.

‘’I will not stand by and allow a handful of opportunists to hold the commuters of the Western Cape hostage. I have said it before, and I maintain that illegal and criminal acts will not be tolerated. Thank you to those public transport operators who continued to transport members of the public despite the volatile situation.’’

‘’I wish to thank officials of the Department of Transport and Public Works who worked tirelessly to source information and advise on possible remedies and actions. I further wish to thank our Traffic Law Enforcement directorate, the Department of Community Safety, members of the City of Cape Town law enforcement corps and the South African Police Service for their support in containing the violence,’’ added Mitchell


PICTURED: Transport & Public Works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell

Done By: Mitchum George

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National Assembly Speaker rejects DA's request for a closed vote in motion of no confidence in the cabinet

National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has rejected the Democratic Alliance’s request for an in-person ballot procedure in next week’s motion of no confidence in the cabinet.

The party’s chief whip, Natasha Mazzone wrote a letter to the speaker asking for the motion to take place in person and for the ministers to be excluded.

‘’The Speaker on 18 March 2022 responded to the DA’s letter, dated 15 March 2022, in which Ms Mazzone contends that the secret ballot voting procedure on the motion will ensure absolute security and freedom of vote, and further states that there is no chance that a member would stand up against their chief whip to vote differently,’’ said Parliament in a statement.

Mapisa-Nqakula recently declined an African Transformation Movement (ATM) request for a secret ballot on the motion of no confidence in President Cyril Ramaphosa.

‘’In arriving at the decision to decline the request, the Speaker said she gave regard to relevant judgements, in particular the case of The United Democratic Movement v Speaker of the National Assembly [2017] and the African Transformation Movement v Speaker of the National Assembly [2021], dealing with the question of secret balloting for motions of no confidence.’’

The ATM then took the Speaker’s decision on review, and the matter will be heard in the Western Cape High Court on 28 March.

“It is clear from these judgments, that I should take into account the prevailing environment in the country, and how these circumstances might impact negatively on the ability of members to exercise their vote freely”, she said.

Mapisa-Nqakula said she also considered each of the various factors set out in these judgements which are to be taken into account in the exercise of her discretion.

“I am concerned that a secret voting procedure may facilitate the possibility of negative practices aimed at influencing members to vote in a particular manner, since members will be shielded from scrutiny and accountability to the people they represent for exercise of that constitutional duty”, she said.

The Speaker further explained why an open vote is important.

“I consider that our democracy will be best served by members of the Assembly who demonstrate openly that, in the event of a conflict between upholding constitutional values and party loyalty, they would follow the values and dictates of the Constitution over the political party loyalty, irrespective of the consequences that could befall their political career prospects individually”, she concluded.

Both motions are scheduled for debate on 30 March in the NA at 2 pm.


PICTURE Courtesy of PA: Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula

Done By: Mitchum George

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Friday, March 25, 2022

Zandile Christmas Mafe's case postponed to 12 May for further investigation

The case against alleged arsonist Zandile Christmas Mafe, has been postponed for six weeks after the state requested to finalise outstanding investigations.

Mafe appeared in the Cape Town Magistrates’ Court on Friday, and is charged with housebreaking with intent to commit terrorism and arson, terrorism, arson and theft.

Senior State Advocate, Mervyn Menigo told the court that forensic investigators were granted access to parliament on 15 March 2022. Adv. Menigo submitted an affidavit of the investigating officer, Colonel Christian Gabriel Theron, which states there was 50 tons of water in the basement of parliament which needs to be cleared for the forensic investigators to be able to determine the costs and amount of damage. This is needed when dealing with arson and terrorism charges.

 He informed the court that a positive facial recognition report has been received and that the State will have a draft indictment and summary of facts ready at the next court appearance. He also advised the court that a high court date may be decided at the next court appearance.

“We know that the accused was arrested on 4 January 2022, this is a complex investigation which has resulted in unforeseen delays, which are not in the hands of the investigating team,” he argued.

PICTURE: NPA - Affidavit of the investigating officer, Colonel Christian Gabriel Theron

The court granted the State the request for further investigation and postponed the case to 12 May 2022.

‘’The defence informed the court that they have advised the State, that they intend to appeal Mafe’s doomed bail application at the high court. The State will oppose the bail appeal,’’ said National prosecuting Authority’s Western Cape spokesperson, Eric Ntabazalila.


Done By: Mitchum George

1 died, another seriously injured in Seawinds fire

The City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Services are trying to ascertain the cause of a fire that broke out at a residence in Seawinds in the early hours of Friday morning.

Spokesperson Jermaine Carelse said that a man has died and a woman suffered 70% burn wounds.

‘’The City's Fire and Rescue Service was alerted at about 1.15am that a house was on fire in St. Patrick Avenue. Crews from Lakeside and Wynberg fire stations were soon on the scene and managed to contain and extinguish the fire by 2.50am.’’

Carelse added that the body of the man was discovered inside the passage way and the woman was treated and transported to a nearby hospital by ambulance.

The scene was handed over the South African Police Service


Done By: Mitchum George

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Close to R1m worth of electricity infrastructure in Cape Town damaged, in February

The City of Cape Town says it will have to repair close to R1 million’s worth of electricity infrastructure, after it was damaged due to vandalism or illegal connection.

In a statement, the municipality says the most incidents of electricity vandalism and illegal connections that were recorded, in February, occurred in areas such as Hanover Park, Heideveld, Athlone and Manenberg, Atlantis, as well as Woodstock and along Philip Kgosana Drive. Meanwhile, Mitchells Plain recorded the most number of incidents.

Mayco member for energy, Beverley van Reenen, says the money could have been spent on other services.

The City is trying to keep Cape Town lit but vandalism, theft and illegal connections cause a lot of damage and unnecessary power outages. These actions drain our resources from much-needed maintenance and upgrading work and places the City’s capital programme at risk. A million rand could rather have been spent on expanding service delivery, as in many cases, sadly, as soon as the City fixes or replaces vandalised infrastructure, it is vandalised again. There are some shifting trends visible, such as the number of incidents in Area North, and also a move of incidents of theft and vandalism into the more formal metro areas.

Van Reenen called on residents to report any suspicious activities.

‘’We appeal to residents to assist us by reporting any suspicious activities near electricity infrastructure to both the South African Police Service and the City so that we can bring an end to infrastructure theft and vandalism. We often leave streetlights on in some cases to deter vandals and where lights are out due to vandalism, the City fixes it as soon as possible.’’

‘’Sadly, often as soon as lights have been fixed, they are vandalised again. The City does deploy security and monitor hotspot areas where possible, but we rely on our communities to alert us and to help us protect community infrastructure,’’ she added.


Done By: Mitchum George

SAHRC find no wrong in Brackenfell High School matric ball party

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) did not find any evidence of racism of Brackenfell High School after a group of pupils held a private matric party in 2020.

This after a group of pupils excluded pupils on the basis of race. 

‘’While the Commission found, through its investigation, that some of the School’s officials knew about the Event, as details of the Event were shared by parents/guardians and learners of the School on WhatsApp, Facebook and by word of mouth; and four teachers had been invited in their private capacity, the evidence before the Commission exonerates the School from the planning, funding, advertising or hosting the Event,’’ said the SAHRC in a statement.

‘’Accordingly, the Commission found that the School did not host a “whites only matric ball” and therefore did not discriminate, whether directly or indirectly, fairly or unfairly, against Grade 12 learners on the ground of race,’’ it added.

An initial investigation, conducted by the Western Cape’s Education Department, found no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the school.

SAHRC commissioner Andre Guam says the commission interviewed teachers and pupils but could not find any evidence of racism.

It says the event organisers also did not directly or indirectly discriminate against pupils

‘’The Commission is grateful for the cooperation it received during its investigation from all relevant parties: School learners who identify with the various race groups, parents and guardians of learners, learners from a different school, the Western Cape Education Department and the School.’’


Done By: Mitchum George

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Today is World TB Day

TB is listed as the third major cause of premature death in Cape Town, World Tuberculosis Day is commemorated annually on the 24th of March to raise public awareness about the devastating health, social and economic consequences of TB. TB is a potentially serious infectious bacterial disease that mainly affects the lungs. It is also the world’s deadliest infectious disease.

The focus of this year’s event was to invest in action to end TB. While there has been a vaccine for TB for over 100 years it is still said to not be very effective in preventing the disease.

Before the COVID pandemic started, TB was killing more people per year than many other diseases, including HIV and malaria, combined.

In South Africa roughly 80,000 people die from TB each year, according to Professor Yogan Pillay, Country Director for Clinton Health Access Initiative.

Pillay said it was estimated that 400,000 people contracted TB each year in South Africa where around 150,000 of those people did not receive any treatment.

The City OF Cape Town’s Health Department has collaborated with different sectors to address the impact of TB, and to find new ways of combating the disease. This includes non-profit organisations (NPOs) and research institutions.

TB HIV Care, an NPO, has been working and supporting City facilities for the past three years in the fight against TB. A pilot project involves digital chest x- ray mobile services to improve screening for and detection of TB. Another NPO, ANOVA Health Institute, aims to improve outcomes for clients with TB/HIV co-infection through the integration of HIV and TB services.

The W-H-O- says Global efforts to combat TB have saved an estimated 66 million lives since the year 2000. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has reversed years of progress made in the fight to end TB.

Sadly, for the first time in over a decade, TB deaths increased in 2020.

Meanwhile, Nigeria recorded a 50 per cent increase in Tuberculosis notifications from 138,591 cases in 2020 to 207,785 in 2021.

By Danielle Mentoor

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Public transport service providers are considering suspending their services due to protests

Western Cape Minister of Transport and Public Works Daylin Mitchell said he was informed of two Cape Town’s taxi associations Cata and Codeta going on a peaceful strike on Thursday. He said that he was aware that they will present a memorandum containing a set of grievances that they have as an industry, especially those operating in townships.

 “I have received reports of attacks on Golden Arrow buses, of infrastructure being set on fire, and of other damage to private property. I have been informed of injuries to people of this city. This is unacceptable. The Western Cape Government strongly condemns these violent acts,” he said.

Mitchell said while he respects the right of aggrieved parties to protest, violence and destruction weakens the hand of the protesters and undermines the rights of others.

He they are public transport service providers who are considering suspending their services to protect property, assets and the lives of staff and commuters.

“This will have a severe impact on people travelling to and from work, school and to access services such as healthcare. We cannot afford this while our economy is only starting to show recovery from two very tough years. These senseless acts are putting jobs at risk. They are putting lives at risk,” Mitchell said.

by Everngelista Muza

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Commuters Struggle as Taxi Strikes Continue to Cause Cape Town Delays

Taxi Operators shut down N2 Highway in protest (Photo supplied).

A combination of taxi driver and e-hailing service strikes are causing headaches for commuters across Cape Town Thursday morning. 

Taxi drivers in Cape Town blocked off the N2 highway, which caused major traffic jams including diversions along R300 and near the Cape Town International Airport. 

At least three Golden Arrow buses have been burnt in amid the protests. The buses were found alight in Nyanga, Bloekombos and Eisleben, according to Golden Arrow. 

The taxi strike includes drivers from both he Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (CATA) and Cape Organization for the Democratic Taxi Association (CODETA). The operators plan to visit Premier Alan Winde's office to demand further benefits for taxis. 

The drivers say there have been too many instances of their taxis being impounded and unfair requirements to release the impounded vehicles.  

The taxi strike comes as e-hailing service drivers including Uber, Bolt and Didi are also on strike this week. The e-hailing strike is expected to end on Thursday. Drivers have urged one another to switch off their apps so that nobody from the e-hailing services is working. 

Some reports indicated drivers in Cape Town patrolled the city to ensure none of their colleagues were accepting passengers.

E-hailing drivers are demanding further regulation of their platforms by the South African government. The drivers accused the platforms of exploiting their service and giving more power to riders in cases of disputes. They are also unhappy with the impact of rising fuel prices and high commissions on their earnings.

The full list of grievances from the e-hailing drivers was sent to Transport Department officials. It includes: 

  • Stop the practice of determining prices on behalf of operators;
  • Abolish uneconomic prices and encourage competition and new business entity entry into the sector;
  • Create a fair regulatory environment that enables investment in an equitable and socially responsible manner;
  • Guard against the creation of App monopolies that compete at the expense of operators and drivers.
Between taxi strikes, e-hailing strikes and buses burned commuters have been left limited transit options to get to work.

By Ben Rappaport

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Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Adjusted alert level 1 of SA lockdown

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the easing of several restrictions as part of Adjusted Alert Level 1

The President said following consultations and the recommendations of the National Coronavirus Command Council, Cabinet has decided to ease restrictions on gatherings and previous regulations.

Ramapahosa addressed the nation on developments in the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday evening

Under the new restrictions:

·        Both indoor and outdoor venues can now take up to 50% of their capacity provided that the criteria for entrance are proof of vaccination or a COVID test not older than 72 hours.

Where there is no provision for proof of vaccination or a COVID test, then the current upper limit will remain – of 1 000 people indoors and 2 000 people outdoors.


·        The maximum number of people permitted at a funeral increased from 100 to 200.

As before, night vigils, after-funeral gatherings and ‘after-tears’ gatherings are not allowed.


·        Wearing of masks

Wearing a mask remains mandatory when in public indoor spaces.

However, a mask is not required when outdoors.

“This means that we still need to wear masks when in shops, malls, offices, factories, taxis, buses, trains or any other indoor public space, but we do not need to wear masks when walking on the street or in an open space, when exercising outdoors or when attending an outdoor gathering,” President Ramaphosa said.


·        A space of 1m is maintained between persons in all settings, except schools.


·        Travelers entering South Africa will need to show proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test not older than 72 hours.

 “All unvaccinated travelers entering the country who want to be vaccinated will be offered a vaccination,” the President said.

Ramaphosa encouraged citizens to get vaccinated.

“The further easing of the remaining restrictions will require that we increase the rate of vaccination among South Africans. The vaccine has been shown to significantly reduce severe illness.

He said vaccination is likely to reduce transmission at home and at places like schools and universities where there is close contact.

“It is vitally important that we get many more of our people between 18 and 35 years vaccinated, and that is why government has launched the #KeReady campaign last month. This campaign includes messages developed by young people and focuses on making the case for people between 18 and 35 years to vaccinate.”

Ramaphosa further encouraged those who are vaccinated to go and receive their booster doses.

“If we are all vaccinated, we can turn our energy, resources and effort to rebuilding our economy and creating much-needed jobs.”

The president said cabinet intends to lift the National State of Disaster, ‘’as soon as public comment on the health regulations published by the Minister of health has been completed.”

All South Africans are invited to make comments on the draft regulations before the 16th of April.

“It just means that we are changing the way we manage the pandemic, and we will be relying on health regulations rather than disaster management regulations. It means that we are learning to live with the virus in our presence. It means that we are returning, as far as possible, to the lives that we lived before the pandemic. It means that we are opening our economy still further, and that we are resuming many of the social and cultural activities that we have missed over the last two years.”


PICTURED: PresidencyZA - President Cyril Ramaphosa

Done By: Mitchum George

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34-year-old man arrested near Piekenierskloof for being in possession of endangered succulant plants

West Coast police arrested a 34-year-old man on Tuesday for being in possession of endangered succulant plants.

The police’s Joseph Swartbooi said that the N7 Flying Squad responded to a call for assistance from Provincial Traffic near to Piekenierskloof.

‘’Upon arrival they requested the passengers to disembark the taxi, with the intention to search the vehicle. The members confiscated a suitcase and backpack filled with succulents.’’

‘’A 34-year-old man was arrested and detained on a charge of possession of flora without documentation,’’ added Warrant Officer, Joseph Swartbooi.

Last week, a 49-year-old foreign national was arrested at Cape Town International Airport, for being in possession of two boxes of endangered succulent plants.


Done By: Mitchum George

Taxi driver shot and killed in Nyanga

Gugulethu police are investigating a case of murder after a taxi driver was gunned down near Borcherds Quarry Drive in Nyanga, on Tuesday.

It's understood that a 54-year-old man was shot inside his taxi, by a passenger. The unknown suspect fled the scene and is yet to be arrested.

Police spokesperson, Joseph Swartbooi, says the motive for the shooting is taxi-related.

‘“Upon arrival at the crime scene, members of Gugulethu police found the body of a 54-year-old man, who sustained gunshot wounds to his upper body, still seated inside the taxi. The victim was declared deceased on the scene by the medical personnel.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stop on 08600 10 111

Meanwhile, Western Cape Transport & Public works MEC, Daylinn Mitchell condemned the incident. Mitchell threatened to close certain routes/ranks in Nyanga



Done by: Mitchum George

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Monday, March 21, 2022

Difference between Diarrhoea & Enteric (typhoid) fever

Enteric or typhoid fever has recently been in the spotlight with a perceived increase in cases although there are annually cases diagnosed. Although enteric fever can be serious and is medically treated, it can often be mistaken for Diarrhoea and Gastroenteritis that is fairly common during the warm summer months.

Seasonal Diarrhoea can often be mistaken for Enteric fever due to the similar symptoms and similar ways in which these illnesses are transferred. The big difference between enteric fever and diarrhoea is that the latter is usually caused by viruses and enteric fever by a bacteria called Salmonella Typhi. Dr Jaco Murray, Head of Paediatrics at Paarl hospital says the two conditions can be distinguished according to the symptoms displayed. “Typhoid fever can be seen as a severe type of diarrhoea, where you get other symptoms not usually associated with normal viral diarrhoea, he explains.


What is Diarrhoea?

Diarrhoea is when a child has a runny tummy or frequent loose stools.  Often the child may be nauseous and can vomit too.  Diarrhoea is usually caused by viruses.  If the child loses too much water she/he can become very ill and may die.  It can also occur amongst adults, although the effect of diarrhoea is less severe for adults.

During the warm summer months, diarrhoea can be quite common amongst babies and young children.  According to Dr Murray diarrhoea is more common in the summer months and the department of Health monitor the Peadiatric Surge Season from November to May. 


What is Enteric Fever?

Enteric Fever (typhoid or paratyphoid fever) is caused by a bacterium called Salmonella Typhi and Salmonella Paratyphi A,B or C.

 It is most common in areas where water and food may be unsafe and where sanitation is poor.

 Any person who ingests the organism is at risk of developing Enteric Fever.

  Diarrhoea can also be a symptom of enteric fever.


What are the symptoms of Diarrhoea?

The patient has a runny tummy or loose stools, vomits and presents with fast breathing.

Fast breathing is a key symptom of pneumonia and diarrhoea. Chest in-drawing is also serious. Don’t wait: get the child to the clinic.

• Other danger signs are: child can’t drink; vomits up everything; child has fits, is weak and stares blankly; there is blood in the stools.

• When there are danger signs then take the child to the clinic as soon as possible.


What are the symptoms of Enteric Fever?

If you have Enteric Fever you may have mild or severe symptoms, which include:

• Fever

• Headache

• Feeling unwell in general

• Abdominal pain or cramps

• Nausea and vomiting

• Constipation or diarrhoea

• A rash on the abdomen (stomach)

• Dysentery (blood in the stool)

• Dry cough

The symptoms may appear as early as 3 days to as late as 60 days after you were exposed to the bacteria. You usually start to get sick within 9 to 21 days after exposure. If you experience symptoms, seek health care immediately.

How is Diarrhoea treated?

Make sure that everyone who looks after the child knows how to make the sugar salt drink to treat diarrhoea. Give small amounts of the drink frequently. (Mix one litre clean water + 8 teaspoons sugar + half a teaspoon salt).

• A very sick child may need extra medication and oxygen and may be hospitalised.

• Continue feeding the child small amounts at a time.

• Continue giving breast milk even if baby has diarrhoea and vomiting.

• A child who has been sick can only eat a little food at a time. Offer food more often (every 2/3 hours at least 5 times a day).


How is Enteric Fever diagnosed and treated?

A healthcare worker will collect and send samples of your blood or stool (faeces) to a laboratory for testing.

• Enteric Fever is treated with antibiotics.

• Antibiotic treatment is also used to treat carriers.

• If you become very sick, you may need to be hospitalised.

How can Diarrhoea and Enteric Fever be prevented?

1. Proper hand-hygiene which includes thorough washing of hands with water and soap after using the bathroom/toilette, and before preparing or eating a meal.

2. Maintain good hygiene in the kitchen when you are handling and preparing a meal. Cover food to keep flies away.

3. Make sure that water is safe to drink. If unsure, then boil it. Store water in a container that has a tap/spigot. If not available, use a clean bucket with a lid.

4. Household water and sanitation supplies should be safe. Avoid water that may be contaminated (polluted) with sewage. 

5. Safe disposal of human stools/poo and nappies.

6. Children should be given the rotavirus vaccine at 6 weeks and 14 weeks. This protects against the main form of diarrhoea.

INFO SUPPLIED BY; Western Cape Health Department

Ilmainen www-laskuri