Thursday, June 30, 2022

SARS auto-assesses over 3 million individual non-provisional taxpayers

The South African Revenue Services (SARS) says more than 3 million taxpayers have been auto-assessed for their personal tax returns. Tax season starts on Friday, during which non-provisional taxpayers will have to submit their personal income tax returns.

SARS commissioner Edward Kieswetter says the auto assessments are part of building a smart revenue service.

"Technology, the use of data, artificial intelligence and algorithms have enabled SARS to make it easy and seamless for most individual taxpayers to comply with their legal obligations. All these innovations support our strategic objective of providing clarity and certainty to help foster a culture of voluntary compliance.

“At the same time, the use of technology and data have also enabled SARS to significantly sharpen its capability to detect non-compliance and to make such non-compliance hard and costly.”

‘’SARS will impose understatement penalties[1] to taxpayers that deliberately attempt to claim impermissible expenses or understate their income as well as administrative non-compliance penalties[2] to those taxpayers that do not adhere to the applicable deadlines of this Filing Season. Taxpayers should be aware that SARS has access to various sources of data, which enables us to track economic activity and verify the completeness and accuracy of tax declarations.’’

From Friday, affected taxpayers will receive communication through SMS or email.

‘’Provisional taxpayers as well as Trust submissions can start with filing a return from 1 July 2022 until 23 January 2023,’’ said Kieswetter.

Taxpayers who did not get an auto-assessment have until 24 October to file their returns.

Kieswetter urged taxpayer to wait for the email and SMS and not to visit SARS branches during the first week of July.

‘’Those who still prefer to visit SARS branches are reminded to please make a booking on our appointment system to ensure an efficient service experience. This can be done either by sending and SMS to 47277 with the word Booking (Space) ID number/Passport number/ Asylum Seeker number, or going to the SARS website (www.sars.gov.za) and clicking on the “Book an Appointment” icon. Tax Practitioners are urged to strictly use their channel when booking an appointment,’’ he added.

 


PICTURE: SARS

Done By: Mitchum George

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Parliament starts probe into sexual harassment claims by EFF

Parliament says it has started its investigation into allegations of sexual harassment by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) against its "bouncers".

The claims were made after the EFF MPs were forcibly removed for disrupting President Cyril Ramaphosa while delivering his address during the Presidency's Budget Vote.

The EFF has since laid criminal charges against the officials.

The Parliament Protection Services officials also lodged a criminal complaint against the EFF Members.

Parliament has since appointed an independent investigator, Advocate Elizabeth Baloyi-Mere, to probe complaints of gender-based violence, sexual harassment, intimidation, and EFF MPs and the Parliamentary Protection Services officials.

In a statement, Parliament said Baloyi-Mere is expected to complete the investigation within 14 working days and later submit a written report within five working days to the Speaker.

"Adv. Baloyi-Mere's responsibility will be to assess the complaints and allegations made by the EFF members against the PPS officials, as well as complaints and claims made by the PPS officials against the EFF members, and then report to the Speaker on its findings and recommendations.

"Advocate Baloyi-Mere has over ten years of experience and has a general litigation practice with her preferred areas of practice, including constitutional, administrative, public procurement, customary, African and general commercial law."

 

PICTURED: 
Speaker of the National Assembly Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula


Done By: Mitchum George

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Kidnapped businessman reunited with family

A kidnapped businessman from Cape Town after more than 100 days in captivity has been rescued.

69-year-old Ismail Rajah was found safe and unharmed in the early hours of Wednesday morning at a house in Khayelitsha.

Rajah was kidnapped outside his business premises in Parow in March.

Shortly after the kidnapping ransom demand was made to his family.

Police spokesperson Athlenda Mathe says the family were already on their way to Dubai to expedite the ransom payment when the police was roped in to investigate.

"Four men, two Mozambican nationals and two South Africans between the ages of 30 and 38-years-old were apprehended. Police have confiscated cellphones and various equipment on suspicion of having been utilized by the suspects during the commission of the crime.”

All four suspects are expected to appear before the Parow Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

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Second case of monkeypox confirmed; Western Cape Health says no need to panic

The National Health Department has announced a second confirmed case of monkeypox in South Africa. According to the department, the 32-year-old man from Cape Town has no travel history, which suggests a high possibility of local transmission.

The National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) said lab tests came positive on the 27th of June 2022.

"Minister Phaahla urges the public to observe good hygiene practices and other preventative measures which proved to be effective against Covid-19 and other infectious diseases in order to prevent the spread of this virus.

"We will continue with contact tracing while closely monitoring the situation and alert clinicians on symptoms to look for, and if the clinical picture fits with monkeypox, they are urged to complete case investigation form and send samples for test."

The source and linkage of cases are still under investigation.

Monkeypox is usually a mild disease manifesting as blisters on the skin, it is usually mild and self-limiting with a fatality rate of 1%.

Meanwhile, the Western Cape’s Health and Wellness Department said that they are prepared and ready to respond to any possible cases.

‘’There is no need for public panic, as Monkeypox is not highly contagious or easily transferable – it needs close contact to be transferred. Standard hygiene practices are effective in preventing infection,’’ it said in a statement.

Furthermore, the City of Cape Town’s Health Department advises the public to be aware and alert to signs and symptoms, and what to do in the event that they suspect infection.

‘’City Health Clinics are prepared to test and provide supportive treatment to those who are symptomatic, as well as, provide guidance and information to them and their loved ones. City Health Outbreak response teams, which include Primary Health Care and Environmental Health Services will assist in case management and contact tracing, similar to what was done during the Covid-19 pandemic, and investigate localised outbreaks in congregate settings,’’ said Mayco Member dfor Communtiy Services & Health, Patricia van Der Ross.

Van Der Ross said that citizens should educate themselves on the signs and symptoms of monkeypox.

‘’City Health will do everything possible to help mitigate the impact of the virus. Our health response was severely tested during the Covid-19 pandemic, and I think the experiences will be extremely valuable in managing any future disease outbreaks.’’

‘’However, we remind the public that health is a shared responsibility. Please do ensure that you are alert to the signs and symptoms of monkeypox, and that you help create awareness within your family and community, without fear-mongering or judgement, and to steer clear of spreading fake news. If you are unsure about what to do, seek advice at your nearest clinic or private health service provider,'’ she added.

 

PICTURE: NICD

Done By: Mitchum George

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Suspect in Tulbagh mass killing to appear in court

A 29-year-old foreign national will appear in the Tulbagh Magistrate's Court on Thursday, in connection with the mass killing in the area that occurred on Saturday.

The police’s Andrè Traut said the suspect is from Lesotho and is in South Africa, illegally.

‘Detectives attached to the Western Cape Serious and Violent Crime Investigation Unit pursued all avenues and conducted their search for a known drug dealer in the local Marikana informal settlement which resulted in the arrest of a 29 year old undocumented Lesotho national,’’ said Colonel Andrè Traut

‘’The suspect is scheduled to make his court appearance in Tulbagh tomorrow [Thursday] where he will face four murder charges and one attempted murder charge,’’ added Traut.

The police spokesperson added that more arrests have not been ruled out.

‘’The investigation of this mass murder is still underway and the possibility of more arrests is not excluded,’’ said Colonel Andrè Traut.

 


Done By: Mitchum George

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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Man dies after shark attack in Plattenberg

 A Beach in the Western Cape has been closed following a fatal shark attack on Tuesday afternoon. According to the The National Sea Rescue Institute a man died from his injuries following a shark attack in Plettenberg Bay after 2pm.

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) spokesperson Craig Lambinon confirmed the incident, and said that crew members responded to an emergency call from an eyewitness. On arrival on the scene the body of an adult male, believed to be a local man, was recovered and brought to the NSRI Plettenberg Bay rescue station.

 “The NSRI and Bitou Municipality are appealing to sea users – bathers, paddlers, sailors and boaters – in Plettenberg Bay and along the Southern Cape coastline to exercise caution following this fatal attack”, said Lambinon


by Everngelista Muza

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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Water disruptions expected in Simons Town

Simon’s Town resident are to expect water disruptions, this is according to the City’s Water and Sanitation Directorate who stated that water supply in the area will be shut down on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation, Councillor Zahid Badroodien said that the maintenance team will be repairing and replacing a faulty fire hydrants along Simon’s Town Main Road and to do a tie-in on the 300mm diameter water main.

The water disruptions is expected to take place at 21:00 until 05:00 on Wednesday.  Water supply will be shut down between Red Hill Road and Simon’s Town Main Road on Wednesday so that the maintenance team can tie-in the 300mm diameter water main. This will enhance the water supply infrastructure by affording an alternate water supply route for the area.

“We sincerely regret any inconvenience caused to the consumers in these areas, but it is a necessity that has to be done soonest,’’said Badroodien.


by Everngelista Muza

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City's officials says more incidents reported in payday weekend

The City of Cape Town officials stated that they have seen an increase of problematic behavior in the payday weekend. Statistics show that the number of public safety issues – including assaults, motor vehicle accidents and drunk driving arrests is high once again.

The City’s Public Emergency Communication logged 1 631 incidents over the weekend.  Once again the majority of the calls were for medical assistance or by-law.

130 incidents were for assault, 49 motor vehicle accidents and 23 pedestrian accidents, compared to the previous weekend the city officials said that there has been a significant increase.

“The payday weekend phenomenon is not new, and it is any person’s right to let their hair down after a long week or month of work. The concern is that, in too many instances, that enjoyment results in poor choices that end up getting an individual hurt, or them hurting someone else.

The trend was even more apparent during an evening spent with our enforcement services this weekend, where more than two dozen motorists were arrested for drunk driving, and nearly a dozen others for reckless and negligent driving – during just one operation,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith.

 

By Danielle Mentoor

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Eight suspects arrested for cable theft

Eight suspected are set to appear Blue Downs Magistrates Court on Wednesday for cable theft.

According to Police Investigations reveal that the suspects highjacked a truck transporting Eskom electrical overhead cables, with an estimated street value of around R2.5 million, in Piketbergin May.

The men, between the ages of 29 and 49-years-old, were found following a joint operation between the police's K9 Unit and Flying Squad on Monday. They face charges for possession of stolen goods and the contravention of the second hand goods act.

SAPS spokesperson, Ndakhe Gwala, said that detectives recovered the stolen cables in Cape Town.” Police searched the premises and found six rolls of aluminium cables on the premises”, said Gwala.


by Lizeka Tsotetsi

Possible stage 6 power cuts on Tuesday

 Eskom has warned that South Africa might mitigate to stage six power cuts later on Tuesday.

While the country is currently on stage four power cuts, the power utility stated that at least 10 power units have now tripped.

Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter said that the grid was under pressure as the strike by some of its staff continues at power plants. He further stated that they were burning through diesel to try and keep the lights on.

"We are burning about two million litres of diesel per day at both Ankerlig as well as Gourikwa - those are our gas turbine open cycle sites. For the month of June to date we have already consumed 85 million litres of diesel," De Ruytre said.


by Everngelista Muza

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Body of woman found in a bag in Delft

Delft police are to investigate the body of a woman found wrapped in a bag and dumped between reeds on an open field on Tuesday. According to police a man burning copper nearby allegedly stumbled across the body.

Meanwhile Delft also saw two separate deadly shootings last week. Cape Town police's Frederick van Wyk said that they wanted anyone with information that could assist police in their probe to come forward.


by Everngelista Muza

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Monday, June 27, 2022

Home Affairs Department prompted to release it’s work Visa requirement

 

The Home Affairs Department said that it had received applications to drop one of its requirements for Zimbabweans applying for a general work visa.

The deadline for Zimbabweans who were on the exemption permit to legitimise is on the 31st of December 2022

One of the requirements for the issuance of a general work permit is that the Zimbabwean national must have a certificate from the Labour Department which considers the special skills list or a waiver.

In November, government announced that the permit would expire at the end of this year.

The Helen Suzman Foundation is approaching the courts to challenge government’s decision.

The Home Affairs Department said that it was processing more than 3,000 waiver applications but some have also applied for the issuing of the labour certificate to be completely discarded


Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi

 

 

Four people killed Tulbagh; R100k reward offered

The Western Cape police are offering a reward for information after four people were killed in a mass shooting that is suspected to be linked to the taxi industry, on Saturday evening in Tulbagh.

‘’The Western Cape Serious and Violent Crime Investigation Unit has been assigned to probe the circumstances surrounding last night’s violent incident in Tulbagh where four male persons were shot and killed, and the investigators are keen to come into contact with any person with information that will lead them to the perpetrators,’’ said Colonel Andrè Traut.

‘’At around 21:00 unknown suspects approached a group of people comprising six males and three females who were socializing at a residence in Jooste Street Tulbach and opened fire at the victims. Four males aged 30, 32,33, and 37 were killed and a fifth male was admitted to hospital. The three females and one male escaped the attack unharmed,’’ he added.

The police spokesperson announced that a R100 000 rewartd is offered if the perpetrators are arrested.

‘’Brigadier Makhaya Mkabile (082 222 6744) and Lieutenant Colonel Bonginkosi Libaya (082 411 2042) are standing by to take your call and it is your choice to remain anonymous.’’

Traut added that the motive for the incident is unknown.

 


Done By: Everngelista Muza / Mitchum George


By Everngelista Muza

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Stage 4 load shedding extended until Wednesday, at least.

Eskom announced that stage four power cuts would continue until at least Wednesday after workers failed to report for duty at various power stations.

The power utility says power cuts are anticipated to continue following delays in planned maintenance and repairs.

“As a result, unplanned generation losses have not been reduced as planned, which has compelled Eskom to continue taking precautionary measures to conserve generation capacity and safeguard plant from damage,’’ said spokesperson, Sikonathi Manthantsha.

“Adequate emergency reserves are crucial to assist with the generation deficit while dealing with generating units that may trip owing to unlawful action, and to compensate for the inability,’’ he added.

Eskom’s employees have gone on an unprotected strike, the action comes after a deadlock in wage negotiations between Eskom’s management and unions.  Eskom's has warned that more blackout misery is on the cards this week if the unlawful strike persists.

PICTURE: Pixabay


By: Everngelista Muza 


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Friday, June 24, 2022

CoCT condemns incidents of electricity vandalism and illegal connections in the Mfuleni area.

The City of Cape Town has condemned the most recent incidents of electricity vandalism and illegal connections in the Mfuleni area.

The City says it has attended to more than 72 faults in the area so far in June 2022 and disconnects illegal connections to City infrastructure on a regular basis.

‘’This week, we visited Mfuleni to have a look at the extent of vandalism and illegal connections in the area. It is alarming to see the amount of illegal connections and vandalised infrastructure, and we simply cannot allow this to continue,’’ said the Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Councillor, Beverley van Reenen.

‘’Constant repairs of the same vandalised infrastructure is not feasible and unfortunately places significant pressure on City resources and thus affects our residents, who experience outages and insufficient street lighting. When the City disconnects illegal connections, criminals often reconnect and vandalise infrastructure even further, leaving many homes without electricity for extended periods,’’ she added.

The municipality is offering a reward to anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest, confiscation of stolen or illegal goods or the handing-in of illegal or stolen goods.

‘’The City’s Electricity Generation and Distribution Department urges residents to help us bring criminals to book by reporting illegal electricity connections to the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the City. Illegal connections and damage to electricity infrastructure remain a challenge across the metro, as it often results in constant electricity outages in some areas, including the Mfuleni area,’’ said van Reenen.

Mfuleni is supplied by both Eskom and the City. Eskom is responsible for the maintenance and repairs of its infrastructure, where it supplies electricity within Mfuleni.

‘’We are offering a reward to anyone who provides information that leads to an arrest, confiscation of stolen or illegal goods or the handing-in of illegal or stolen goods. This reward is also applicable to information leading to the arrest of people vandalising, damaging or stealing electricity infrastructure or installing illegal connections. We call on all our communities to stand by us and to work with us to help protect community infrastructure,’’ added van Reenen.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

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First case of monkeypox identified in South Africa

The National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), a division of the National Health Laboratory Service, confirms that a case of monkeypox has been identified through laboratory testing at the NICD on Wednesday, 22 June 2022.

The NICD said that a 30-year-old male residing in Gauteng contracted the virus.

‘’He reports no recent travel history. Contact tracing has commenced, identifying any additional linked cases of monkeypox in South Africa,’’ said NICD in a statement.

Monkeypox is a rare viral infection in humans. Since May 2022, monkeypox has been reported in more than 3 000 individuals from several European countries, the USA, Canada, Australia, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates.

‘’This is the first multi-country outbreak of monkeypox and is already the largest outbreak of monkeypox recorded. The cases to date mostly involve individuals that self-identify as men having sex with men. Risk factors include reporting multiple sexual partners. Recent large social events are thought to have served as super spreader events,’’ it added.

Person-to-person transmission involves close contact (for example kissing, cuddling, sexual contact) with an infected person or materials that have been contaminated by an infected person (for example sharing linen, clothes and other household items).  The virus is not highly transmissible and close physical contact is required for transmission. It does not spread similarly to influenza or the coronavirus.

Symtoms of Monkeypox includes fever and general flu-like symptoms, followed by the eruption of a blister-like rash on the skin.

‘’The disease is rarely fatal and cases typically resolve within two to four weeks. Most cases do not require hospital treatment. Prevention of infection hinges on the isolation of cases until fully recovered. The risk to the general population is considered low, given the low transmissibility of the virus.’’

‘’The World Health Organization recommends increasing vigilance for cases with contact tracing and monitoring of laboratory-confirmed cases.Isolation of confirmed cases allows for the prevention of transmission and interruption of the cycle of transmission. Circulation of the monkeypox virus in humans may be eliminated through this classic containment approach. Mass vaccination against the monkeypox virus is not currently recommended,’’ added the NICD.

 

PICTURE: NICD

Done By: Mitchum George

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Eskom implements Stage 4 load shedding

Eskom has implemented Stage 4 load shedding from 11a.m on Friday. In a statement on Friday, the power utility said that this is due to some of its employees embarking on an unprotected strike action.

"Eskom experienced protests at nine of its power stations and other operating facilities, by some of its employees who have embarked on unprotected strike action following a deadlock in wage negotiations on Tuesday.

"These protests included incidents of intimidation of working employees and blockading of roads leading to power stations and, inhibiting the free flow of personnel and commodities required for the generation of electricity and smooth operations.

"The increased unavailability of plants has necessitated an extensive usage of emergency generation reserves, which are depleting faster than can be replenished.  Eskom has reported these acts of illegality to the police," said spokesperson, Sikonathi Mantshantsha.

Manthantsha says Stage 4 load shedding will last until midnight on Friday. He added that on Saturday and Sunday, Stage 4 loadshedding will also be implemented from 5am until midnight.

‘’ It is necessary to bolster emergency generation reserves to react to unforeseen circumstances, as well as to replenish emergency reserves to prepare for the week ahead. This would help fill the generation deficit while dealing with generating units that may trip amidst the disturbances and compensate for the inability to return generating units timeously to service.

Manthantsha says the parastatal is in talks to find solutions to end the strike.

‘’While exploring possible solutions to unlock the deadlock with the unions, Eskom appeals to its labour partners and striking employees to embrace the higher purpose of putting the people of South Africa first, respect the law and to desist from illegal and undemocratic conduct.’’

Meanwhile, the City of Cape Town says its customers will load shed on stage 3 on Friday until 10p.m

 

Picture: Pixabay

Done By: Mitchum George

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Three people shot dead in Delft

Delft Police have launched a manhunt for the suspects  who shot and killed three people.  According to SAPS spokesperson Colonel Andrè Traut, the bodies of two men and a woman were discovered in a shack at an informal settlement. Traut said the deceased were all in their 20s. 

“Preliminary investigation indicated that the victims were shot and killed. The motive for the murders is yet to be established and arrests are yet to be made,” he said.

This come after 26-year-old Constable Shamila Arendse was shot dead outside her home in Delft in the Western Cape on Tuesday night. She was attached to the Table Bay Harbour police station in Cape Town and was off-duty at the time of her death.



by Everngelista Muza


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Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Cape Town Mayor calls on COVID-19 restrictions to be scrapped

Executive Mayor of Cape Town, Geordin Hill-Lewis says he’s encouraged by a letter sent by Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla’s to the nine provinces’ Health MECs, expressing the view that the remaining Covid-19 regulations

The letter suggests the possible dropping of masks in public spaces, the lifting of the ban on gatherings, and the removal of restrictions on travellers entering the country.

Hill-Lewis will on Wednesday morning be part of a special President's Coordinating Council meeting to discuss the regulations. The Cape Town Mayor says it is time to move on from, what he describes as, irrational Covid-19 restrictions

‘’The country has clearly exited the fifth wave of infections. In addition to this, the rates of death and hospitalisation in the January and May waves were considerably lower than the previous ones, even though the majority of restrictions had already been dropped.’’

‘’Continuing to restrict South Africans’ freedom to decide for themselves whether to wear masks and restrict their attendance at large gatherings is not rationally related to saving lives, and thus unjustified,’’ added Hill-Lewis.

The remaining restrictions , says the Cape Town mayor, also disproportionately and unfairly affect certain groups in society, including young school children and ordinary, wage-earning workers.

‘’While patrons of restaurants are free to unmask to enjoy a meal in comfort, for example, waiting and kitchen staff are forced to be masked for up to twelve hours at a time. Children as young as seven years old are being forcibly subjected to the discomfort of all day masking, often while school management are comfortably maskless in schools’ administrative offices.’’

 


Done By: Mitchum George

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Load shedding to continue until Sunday

Eskom has implemented stage 2 load shedding from 10a.m on Wednesday.

In a statement the ailing power utility said that a generation unit each at the Kendal and Matimba, as well as two units at the Matla Power Station broke down on Wednesday morning.

‘’This reduced generation capacity by 2 400MW, adding to the ongoing capacity constraints. There has been a delay in returning to service a unit at Kusile Power Station, which is now expected to return to service tomorrow [Thursday].’'

Stage 2 loadshedding will last until midnight. Starting on Thursday, until Sunday night, Stage 2 loadshedding will be implemented from 5a.m until midnight.

Eskom’s spokesperson, Sikonathi Manthantsha says there’s a likelihood that the stage of loadshedding might need to be increased during the evening peaks.

‘’Eskom will continue to closely monitor the system, adjust and communicate any changes as may be necessary. We appeal to all South Africans to help limit the impact of the shortages by continuing to reduce the usage of electricity and to switch off all non-essential items.’’

‘’Eskom cautions the public that as the shortage of generation capacity persists, the system will continue to be constrained with an elevated risk of loadshedding over the coming weeks,’’ said Manrhantsha.

‘’We would like to remind the public that loadshedding is implemented only as a last resort to protect the national grid. We therefore urge all South Africans to continue using electricity sparingly especially between 05:00 – 10:00 in the mornings and 16:00 – 22:00 in the evenings,’’ he added.

 

PICTURE: Pixabay

Done By: Mitchum George

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Mubaiwa sisters sought by Muizenberg police

Muizenberg police are seeking the assistance of the public to trace two sisters who went missing in May 2022. The police's Wesley Twigg said that 18-year-old Vanessa Mubaiwa and 21-year-old Kimberley Mubaiwa were last seen when they left their residence in Capricorn, Muizenberg to go to the library.

SUPPLIED: SAPS

‘’At the time of their disappearance Vanessa was wearing a brown pants and brown stripe jacket and Kimberley was wearing a black jeans, blue denim jacket and white running shoes,’’ said Sergeant Wesley Twigg.

Anyone with any information regarding the whereabouts of the missing sisters or who can assist with the investigation is kindly requested to contact Captain Steven Lewis at Muizenberg Detective Branch on 082 469 2694 or Crime Stop on 08600 10111.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

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Off-duty police officer shot and killed in Delft

Western Cape police are probing a case of murder after a 26-year-old off-duty police official was shot and killed in Delft, on Tuesday evening. Details about the shooting incident are still sketchy.

‘’Eye witness accounts from the crime scene indicate that the police constable attached to Table Bay Harbour police station was standing in front of her residence with three other persons when unknown gunmen emerged and fired several shots in Gilo Road, Leiden, Delft,’’ says Brigadier Novela Potelwa.

Potelwa added that the Hawks have taken over the investigation. No arrests have been made.

‘’Her identity will be released once her next of kin has been informed.’’

 


Done By: Mitchum George

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Tuesday, June 21, 2022

CoCT condemns attack on Nyanga library & Mzamomhle Clinic

The City of Cape Town has condemned the attacks on community facilities.

This comes after five gunmen held up and robbed staff at the Nyanga Library on Friday. The City’s Mayco Member for Community Services and Health, Patricia Van der Ross, says staff were robbed of their personal belongings, including cell phones and cash. She added that the gunmen also fled with desktop computers and a television set.

Earlier this month, two men posed as patients to gain entry onto the grounds of the Mzamomhle Clinic in Brown’s Farm, Philippi. Van der Ross said that they held two security guards at gunpoint and robbed them of their belongings. She added that other security staff who witnessed the incident raised the alarm for the doors to be closed, but one of the suspects managed to get into the facility and attempted to rob one of the clients. Law Enforcement and SAPS were called and arrived promptly, but the suspects managed to get away. Fortunately no one was injured.

Mzamomhle Clinic & Nyanga Library meanwhile remains closed until further notice, with patients referred to other facilities in the area.

Van Der Ross said that staff are receiving support through the City’s Employee Assistance Programme.

The mayco member says attacks cannot be tolerated.

‘’Our clinics, libraries and recreational facilities have long been the target of vandals and thieves, but this apparent new trend of armed robbery is something else completely, and definitely cause for concern. The brazen nature of these attacks is absolutely shocking. It makes it incredibly difficult to deliver quality services in our communities who rely most on the City’s basket of services, but also our staff who are left traumatised and scared to return to work.’’

‘’These incidents, like so many others before it, do not only result in the closure of facilities, as we’ve seen at the clinic, but operations at the library will be severely affected, as staff will have to manually check out books; jobseekers and students now have no computer access to complete applications or assignments, and the replacement of these stolen items will not happen overnight,’’ added Mayco Member for Community Services and Health, Patricia Van der Ross.

Van Der Ross called on residents to come forward should they have any information regarding the matter.

‘’Our facilities all have security hardening features, as well as physical security on site. The more sustained the attacks on our facilities, the harder it becomes to offer quality and reliable services, and it’s the community who bears the brunt. Someone, somewhere knows who the perpetrators are of these specific attacks, but also other incidents of vandalism and theft at community facilities. I call on the public to stand up and help protect their community assets, by helping us bring them to book.’’

 

Done by: Mitchum George

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35 farmworkers injured when the truck they were travelling in overturned on the R45 Road near Klapmuts

Thirty-five farmworkers were injured when the truck they were travelling in overturned on the R45 Road near Klapmuts, on Monday. The last accident of this nature occurred near Worcester in January last year which took the lives of three farmworkers.

Cosatu Western Cape says its shocked by the latest incident and has called on the Minister of Employment and Labour, Thulas Nxesi, to ban the transportation of farmworkers on trucks.

‘’Government and Farm Owners has done nothing to protect the vulnerable farmworkers who must travel every day in these dangerous conditions. How many people must die before the Farmers, Provincial and National Government is going to intervene to ensure that farmworkers are treated as human beings and being transported in safe modes of transport,’’ said COSATU’s Provincial Secretary, Malvern De Bruyn.

‘’Cosatu is calling on the Minister of Employment and Labour to ban the transportation of farmworkers on trucks. We are also calling on the Law Enforcement Agencies to thoroughly investigate this matter to ensure that justice be served. Cosatu is also calling on the Farm Owner to look after the families of the injured farm workers and that they be paid in full while at home due to injuries sustained in the accident,’’ he added.

De Bruyn has also called on the South African Human Rights Commission to investigate this matter.

‘’We are of the view that the rights of the farmworkers have been infringed. Cosatu will be monitoring the situation closely and the matter will be discussed at our next PEC Meeting and Alliance Meeting respectively to discuss a campaign against these irresponsible farmworkers and Government including the Provincial Government.

‘’We will also explore the option of engaging our lawyers to investigate the possibility of instituting civil claims on behalf of the farmworkers,’’ added De Bruyn.

 

Done by: Mitchum George

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City officials arrests numerous suspects over the weekend; mayco member concerned over drunk driving

Western Cape’s LEAP officers arrested a wanted suspect in Delft on Sunday.

According to mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith, officers were on patrol in the area, when they spotted two men running into a yard and stopped to investigate.

When one of the suspects tried to make a break for it, added Smith, the officers recognised him immediately as one of Delft’s most wanted suspects.

He was searched and found to be in possession of mandrax, and upon arrival at the police station, it was confirmed, that the man is wanted for numerous charges of murder, attempted murder and the possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

In a separate incident, traffic officers arrested 2 suspects in Goodwood on Monday morning, for fraud, illegal firearm, reckless and negligent driving, as well as being in possession of drugs

Smith says traffic officers pursued a vehicle which was being driven recklessly along Voortrekker Road, just before 5a.m on Monday.

The vehicle was stopped after disobeying a red traffic light at the intersection of Voortrekker and Halt Roads.

‘’The occupants, two men aged 30 and 40, were arrested after the officers found an imitation firearm, mandrax, tik and an assortment of bank cards in their possession.  The driver was also charged with driving recklessly - both were detained at Goodwood police station,’’ said Smith.

‘’They were just two of the 73 arrests made by traffic officers of which 65 were for drunk driving and eight for reckless driving,’’ he added.

Meanwhile, Metro Police officers recovered drugs worth more than R200 000 in Kensington on Monday.

‘’The officers followed up on information of gang activities at a house in the area, and when they searched the premises they found an air rifle, as well as two sachets of tik and mandrax tablets hidden in the backyard. 

''Six men and two women, aged between 17 and 26, were arrested for dealing in drugs and taken to Kensington SAPS.’’

SUPPLIED: CoCT


Furthermore, officers were conducting patrols in Bothasig when they spotted a vehicle driving with its head lights switched off.

‘’The driver reeked of alcohol, his eyes were bloodshot and he appeared unsteady on his feet. The 28-year-old man was arrested for driving while  under the influence and was detained at Bothasig SAPS.,’’ said Smith.

A second drunk driver, aged 32, was arrested while swerving on the road on Voortrekker Road in Goodwood.

Mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith says driving under the influence remains a concern.

‘’Drunk driving continues to plague our streets, puts lives at risk and consumes resources. Families and friends can help by not allowing their loved ones to drive impaired. It’s one of the easiest ways to help us save lives on the road.’’

 

Done By: Mitchum George

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Western Cape dam levels increase by 7%

Western Cape dam levels rose nearly to 6% in the past week, following last week’s heavy rainfall in the province.

According to the latest dam level report, the Western Cape’s dam levels are currently sitting at 56.7%, compared to the previous week’s 51.3%.

‘’Although the department is pleased with the way dam levels are replenishing, localised flooding due to heavy rains has caused undesired consequences for some communities. The Department Wof Water & Sanitation urges communities to use caution when crossing rivers, lakes, and other waterways during heavy rains and to not settle in flood prone areas,’’ said department’s spokesperson,Sputnik Ratau.

Dams supplying the City of Cape Town increased to 70.8%, from last week’s 63.9%. This is an increase of 7%. Dams feeding Cape Town, which includes the Wemmershoek Dam, Voëlvlei Dam, Steenbras Upper and Lower Dams, Theewaterskloof Dam and Berg River Dam, are currently at a combined level of 70.83%. This is an increase from last week’s level of 63.92%. “Voëlvlei Dam is currently 57.95%, and Theewaterskloof Dam is 72.30%.

Western Cape’s Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC, Anton Bredell, says albeit the recent cold fronts have caused localised flooding in the Cape Metro, the rising dam levels are to be welcomed. He urged residents to continue using water sparingly

“During the dry summer months, we are watching with great concern how dam levels inch lower and lower each week. Let us now watch levels inching upwards. If we continue to save water now, we well derive the maximum water security going into the next summer season.”

Bredell also said municipalities should continue to maintain all water infrastructure and water distribution networks.

“Ensure that you can get the maximum amount of water into your storage systems and be able to supply it to end users with the minimum of leakage along the way.”

 

COURTESY: CoCT

Done By: Mitchum George

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Stage 2 load shedding to be implemented until Thursday

Eskom will once again implement stage 2 load shedding on Tuesday evening due to a generation capacity shortage.

Eskom says it will implement the rolling power cuts between 17:00 and 22:00 until Thursday.

Spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha says the situation could continue in the coming weeks if the capacity does not improve.

"Eskom will continue to closely monitor the system, adjust and communicate any changes as may be necessary. We appeal to all South Africans to help limit the impact of the shortages by continuing to reduce the usage of electricity and to switch off all non-essential items.

"Eskom cautions the public that as the shortage of generation capacity persists, the system will continue to be constrained with an elevated risk of load shedding over the coming weeks."

 

Courtesy: Pixabay

Done By: Mitchum George

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'Tik' is the most used drug in the Western Cape - report

Most people in the Western Cape use the drug, tik as a primary substance.

This was revealed by the latest Phase 50 report, released in 2022, which was compiled by the South African Community Epidemiology Network on Drug Use, reported by 36 specialist treatment centres/programmes between January & June 2021.

South Africa commemorates National Drug Awareness Week between 20 – 27 June 2022.

According to the report, 35% used Tik, 24% cannabis, 18% used alcohol and 7% for heroin which together, comprises 84 percent of all admissions.

According to the Western Cape’s Social Development MEC, Sharna Fernandez, more than 2 433 people were treated across all 36 treatment centres in the first half of 2021. She added that close to 9 200 individuals accessed substance abuse prevention and treatment services offered by the Department and its partners.

“No one grows up thinking they are going to become addicted to alcohol or drugs. I would like to thank all the individuals, communities, organisations and civil society working together to help provide support to those experiencing a substance use disorder. Anybody needing more information or assistance can contact us on the www.heretohelp.co.za website, or the DSD hotline on 0800 220 250,” said Fernandez.

 

PICTURED: Screenshot of latest SACENDU report

Done By: Mitchum George

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W.Cape MEC worried about mob killings in the province; 37-year-old man beaten to death in Kraaifontein

The Western Cape’s Police Oversight & Community Safety MEC, Reagen Allen says the increase in mob justice in the province, are worrying.

This comes after yet another alleged mob justice killing, that occurred on Sunday, on the corner of 1st Avenue and Lincoln Road in Belmont Park, Kraaifontein.

According to police, a 37-year-old man, whom residents accused of a crime, was allegedly beaten to death by community members.

The latest crime statistics revealed that 227 murder cases which has been linked to vigilantism or mob justice in the Western Cape, occurred over the 4 quarters of the 2021/22 financial year.

Of the more than 200 cases, 60 occurred in the first 3 months of this year. 16 cases, the most in the province, occurred in the Nyanga cluster and 11 each, which is joint 2nd in the Khayelitsha and Blue Downs clusters.

Allen condemned the latest incident.

“This incident highlights a trend that is deeply concerning, especially since the last unjustifiable mob killing of Mr. Abongile Mafalala. This and any type of crime can never be condoned. Under no circumstances does any person have the right to take the law into their own hands. Wherever it is suspected that the law was broken, it is our civil duty to contact any law enforcement agency, so that an arrest can occur, allowing SAPS to further investigate the matter and let the court process run its course.”

The MEC appealed to residents to not spread misinformation

“We understand that there are many communities who are frustrated and might have a deficit of trust in SAPS, but deciding to effect justice by themselves, is just committing another crime. This is unacceptable. The continued increase in the statistics sketches a worrying picture. I will continue to engage SAPS about their efforts to combat these types of crime.”

“I’d also like to appeal to community members to not spread any fake/false news about certain individuals without ascertaining the facts. This is one of the most dangerous aspects that ties into vigilantism/mob killings. Let us be responsible and law-abiding citizens that do not make themselves guilty of this type of crime,” he added.

PICTURED: MEC Allen with Bush Radio's Mitchum George


Done By: Mitchum George

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Langa man arrested for R500k drugs

Western Cape police arrested a 26-year-old man in the early hours of Monday, after he was found with drugs worth half a million rand.

The police’s Wesley Twigg said that members of Operation Restore searched a premises in Block B, Zone 2, in Langa after receiving a tip-off about possible illicit activities at the premises.

‘’The members responded to the information and found 1598 mandrax tablets, 47 units cocaine, 1902 ecstacy tablets and loose dagga with an estimated street value of R500 000 during a search. A 26 year old male was arrested and detained on charges of dealing and possession of drugs,’’ said Sergeant Wesley Twigg.

SUPPLIED: SAPS


Once charged the suspect will make a court appearance in the Bishop Lavis Magistrates court.

 

SUPPLIED: SAPS

Done By: Mitchum George

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Monday, June 20, 2022

Eastern Cape police arrest woman for murder

 A 29-year-old Eastern Cape woman has been arrested for the murder of her fiancé. According to the Eastern Cape authorities the incident took place after the couple allegedly became involved in a heated argument which turned physical.

The now deceased man allegedly attacked the woman, who in turn lunged at him with a knife leading to fatal injuries. The 34-year-old man was later taken to a local clinic for his wounds, where he died from injury. The woman was arrested on a murder charge. She is expected to appear in the Motherwell magistrate court on Monday.


By Everngelista Muza

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