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Yesterday — May 7th 2021The Citizen

Daily Covid-19 update: Over 2000 new cases while two provinces record zero deaths

May 7th 2021 at 16:35

As of Friday, 7 May, the cumulative number of detected Covid-19 cases is 1,592,626 with 2256 new cases identified, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has confirmed.

67 more Covid-19 related deaths were reported, with 1 from Eastern Cape, 0 from Free State, 13 from Gauteng, 5 from KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), 26 from Limpopo, 2 from Mpumalanga, 0 from North West, 10 from Northern Cape and 10 from Western Cape.

This brings the total number of Covid-19 related deaths to 54,687.

Recoveries now stand at 1,513,202 representing a recovery rate of 95%.

A total of 10,831,738 tests have been completed with 25,934 new tests conducted since the last report, while the total number of vaccines that have been administered stands at 381,171.

#COVID19 Statistics in SA as at 07 May.

Use the COVID Alert SA app to protect yourself, your loved ones and your community. Start using this privacy preserving app today. Add your phone to the fight! Download the Covid Alert SA app now! https://t.co/8YKEqaiiRF pic.twitter.com/hiu0QRLFMe

— Dr Zweli Mkhize (@DrZweliMkhize) May 7, 2021

Gauteng readiness for third wave

The Gauteng government has made 4564 bed spaces available for Covid-19 patients amid concerns about rising infections.

This comes after Gauteng Premier David Makhura said the province was in the early phases of a third wave.

The premier, however, said the province was prepared and the focus had fallen on flattening the infection curve.

“We have also added additional staff – 4,000 professionals – to the staff complement of the department of health,” he said on Thursday.

Addtional reporting by Molefe Seeletsa

Chief justice Mogoeng set to miss notable cases while on leave

May 7th 2021 at 16:12

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng was at the centre of a string of controversies in recent months and this week continued raising eyebrows with the news he was taking a lengthy leave of absence.

Judges get 3½ months’ leave for every four years’ service and in a statement on Thursday, the office of the chief justice announced Mogoeng had taken his “long leave” – as the judiciary calls it – with effect from 1 May.

With Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo’s hands full at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, Judge Sisi Khampepe has been named acting chief justice.

ALSO READ: Mogoeng takes long leave before JCC’s Israel appeal decision

But with the courts going into the third recess for the year in September this looks, in effect, to be his bowing out.

The announcement came hot on the heels of the news that Mogoeng was appealing the Judicial Conduct Committee’s (JCC) findings against him over comments he made about Israel last year and with a ruling from the Constitutional Court, which the chief justice heads, on the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture’s attempt to have former president Jacob Zuma held in contempt, expected any day now.

His office has offered a less controversial explanation for the timing, though. It said Mogoeng had been due to take his long leave since July 2018, but had been too busy.

However, judges’ leave is not cumulative and Mogoeng had to take his or risk forfeiting it.

“It is a normal practice in the judiciary for judges to take their leave whenever it is due. The chief justice’s long leave was due and he has duly taken it,” it read.

Mogoeng is now not expected to be sitting as chief justice when the Constitutional Court hands down its judgment in the commission’s contempt case against Zuma.

He was, however, not on the bench that heard the case originally, so would not have been involved in adjudicating it.

But there are also a number of other important cases on the court’s roll over the next few months, which Mogoeng now won’t be presiding over.

ALSO READ: Chief justice Mogoeng nearing end of his term. Who will replace him?

Another case involving Zuma, in which he is fighting a personal costs order made against him in his attempt to challenge the establishment of the state capture commission, is due to come before the Constitutional Court justices, as are cases involving the constitutionality of the University of South Africa’s 2016 decision to do away with Afrikaans as a language of instruction and a challenge to the broad-based black economic empowerment rules for government tenderers.

Mogoeng’s appeal before the JCC is due to be considered next month. In March, the JCC found Mogoeng had breached the code of judicial conduct by becoming involved in political controversy at a webinar hosted by The Jerusalem Post last year, as well as at a subsequent prayer meeting where he refused to apologise for his comments.

It gave him 10 days to issue an unconditional apology. During the webinar, he was asked to comment on the diplomatic relationship between SA and Israel and whether he agreed with the former’s foreign policy in relation to the other.

His remarks prompted complaints from three local organisations: Africa 4 Palestine, SA Boycott Disinvestments and Sanctions Coalition and Women’s Cultural Group.

bernadettew@citizen.co.za

Black Coffee thanks supporters as court denies Enhle a protection order

May 7th 2021 at 15:51

DJ Black Coffee feels vindicated after the Randburg Magistrate’s Court denied his ex-wife Enhle Mbali a protection order against him.

In a tweet on Friday evening, Black Coffee – real name Nkosinathi Maphumulo – reiterated that he did not assault Mbali as she has claimed.

He said after initially trying to “correct the narrative”, he chose to keep mum about the issue because he had faith in South Africa’s judicial system.

Following the proceedings, the Court has ruled in my favour. The interim Protection order was set aside and her case dismissed.
Thank you all who stood by my side.

— Black Coffee (@RealBlackCoffee) May 7, 2021

Earlier on Friday, Mbali took to social media to express her hurt at not being granted the protection order she filed against her ex-husband.

In a teary Instagram video, she begins by telling her followers how she had been protecting Black Coffee for far too long and had been physically abused by the DJ in their marital home.

“I have been protecting this man for far too long…this man lied in the court of law saying he went under my arm as tall as he is, knowing very well that he hit me, struck my hand twice and then pushed me of our marital home,” she said in the video.

ALSO READ: Black Coffee protection order ruling postponed

Mbali said she would be holding a press conference where she would bring evidence to prove her statements and to prove that the father of her children had lied in court.

Additional reporting by Lerato Maimela

Joburg teacher suspended after allegedly calling pupil k-word

May 7th 2021 at 15:26

An Afrikaans teacher was suspended with immediate effect after allegedly calling a 14-year-old pupil from the Northriding Secondary School the k-word and spraying the pupil with sanitiser.

The parents of the Grade 8 pupil described the incident as a traumatic matter for them, their child and the other children exposed to racial slurs and attacks.

“We are really angry about it,” the father of the pupil said. The father said he never thought his child would have to experience in 2021 what they had experienced when they were young in “that era”.

ALSO READ: ‘Racist’ Agrizzi opposed BEE, controlled Watson’s emails, Zondo told

“There is a lot that needs to change in the school’s culture and management,” he said.

The pupil’s mother said they would be taking further steps against the teacher and the parents have already laid a complaint at the Human Rights Commission of South Africa (HRCSA).

“We have also pressed charges against the teacher. We are taking it very seriously,” the mother said.

“The thing that upsets me the most is we heard it from our son. Nobody contacted us from the school. It is unfortunate and a failure,” the mother said.

Earlier on Friday, Gauteng MEC for education Panyaza Lesufi visited the school following the allegations.

“As a department, we are extremely disappointed about this incident.

“Racism will never be tolerated in our schools. Teachers must always teach and guide pupils; not fight them,” Lesufi said.

Lesufi welcomed the immediate suspension of the teacher.

Gauteng department for education spokesman Steve Mabona said during a media briefing at the school that initial investigations indicated an altercation over the making of noise occurred on Thursday between the pupils and an Afrikaans teacher.

“The teacher then allegedly sprayed the pupil with sanitiser when he left the classroom to report the matter to another teacher in the neighbouring class,” Mabona said.

“The teacher allegedly followed and started to engage violently with the pupil, further spraying the pupil with sanitiser all over his body and allegedly calling him a k****r,” Mabona added.

Other teachers had to intervene.

“Reports state that the same teacher then had another altercation, in the next period, with other pupils, where she started swearing at pupils, allegedly calling them baboons, drug dealers and k****rs,” Mabona said.

The education department’s psychosocial team visited the school to provide support for all affected by the incident.

School headmaster Francois Oosthuizen said a teaching agency had been contacted to replace the teacher.

He said he himself would stand in if necessary because he is a qualified Afrikaans teacher. Meanwhile, in the smoking section of the school, two teachers casually sat, puffing away.

The teachers said they were having a very quiet day because the pupils left the classes to protest on the sports field, where they sat down and refused to return to class.

In front of the school’s office, a small group of angry parents gathered to voice their grievances about the incident. The parents wanted to know what processes will be put in place to ensure the school does not become a breeding ground for racism.

PowerBall results: Friday, 7 May 2021

May 7th 2021 at 15:00

Get the PowerBall and PowerBall Plus results as soon as they are drawn on The Citizen, so you can rest easy and check your tickets with confidence.

While great care has been taken to ensure accuracy, The Citizen cannot take responsibility for any error in the PowerBall or PowerBall Plus results. We suggest verifying the numbers on the National Lottery website.

Here are the winning PowerBall results for Friday, 7 May 2021:

PowerBall: 4, 7, 19, 20, 49 Powerball: 19

Here are the winning PowerBall Plus results for Friday, 7 May 2021:

PowerBall Plus: 1, 8, 13, 39, 44 Powerball: 5

For more details and to verify the PowerBall results, visit the National Lottery website.

When do South African national Lottery ticket sales close? 

Lottery outlets close at 8.30pm on the day of a draw, which happens at 9pm. The terms and conditions may differ from other service outlets. Visit www.nationallottery.co.za for more information.

Click here for previous winning numbers.

How much does it cost to play PowerBall?

PowerBall entries cost R5 per board including VAT. PowerBall Plus costs an additional R2.50 per board. You can also play PowerBall on selected banking apps (T’s & C’s apply).

Visit www.nationallottery.co.za and go to the How to Play section to find out more.

Colombians topple ‘rapist’ conquistador’s statue in capital

May 7th 2021 at 14:52

Bogota – Indigenous people in Colombia on Friday knocked down a statue of Spanish conquistador Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada, who founded the capital Bogota, as protests against the government continued.

Photos shared on social media showed members of the Misak indigenous community standing on the empty pedestal in the centre of Bogota with the statue lying on the ground with a broken arm.

At least 26 people have died in clashes between demonstrators and security forces since protests against President Ivan Duque’s government began on April 28, originally against a now abandoned tax reform.

ALSO READ: Fresh protests called after deadly Colombia tax reform clashes

Indigenous people have joined unions, students and other groups in demanding change to the government’s policies on health, education and inequality.

Demonstrators from the Misak — also called Guambiano — community, originally from the south of the country, arrived at dawn at the statue, erected in 1960, waving their indigenous flags.

“Historically he was the biggest slaughterer, torturer, thief and rapist of our women and our children,” the group said in a statement.

The statement said the “elitist families descended” from De Quesada had “reproduced the great problems” of the country such as the recently abandoned tax reform.

Indigenous people in Colombia’s southwest have knocked down at least three statues to conquistadors since September 2020.

They are waging a historic dispute over land rights but have often been the victims of Colombia’s multi-faceted conflict pitting left-wing guerrillas, drug-traffickers, right-wing paramilitaries and the armed forces against each other.

Western Cape storm death toll climbs to four

May 7th 2021 at 14:32

This week’s massive storm in the Southern Cape has claimed two more lives.

It brings the number of deaths, as a result of the storm, to four.

The two bodies were people who had been missing since Wednesday. The bodies were found in the Riviersonderend/Stormsvlei area.

ALSO READ: Storms continue to batter Western Cape, more rain expected

The first two deaths were recorded in the Bonnievale area. Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC Anton Bredell expressed his condolences.

“Every casualty is a tragedy and we are deeply saddened by each loss. Emergency responders continue to work non-stop across the affected regions to ensure people are kept as safe as possible. These efforts will not stop until the danger has passed.”

The Department of Water and Sanitation continues to monitor the rising level of rivers in the region.

Several roads in the Southern Cape are either closed or affected by localised flooding.

All evacuations of affected persons have been completed successfully.

Various farm roads have been damaged, with limited or no access to certain areas.

Bredell said travelling in the Overberg region remains extremely unsafe, as well as impossible in places.”The South African Weather Service has warned that further disruptive rainfall can be expected across most parts of the Overberg throughout today and tonight.

“In addition, rainfall can be expected in Bitou, Breede Valley, Cape Agulhas, George, Hessequa, Kannaland, Knysna, Langeberg, Mossel Bay, Oudtshoorn and Swellendam until tomorrow evening, with up to 50mm predicted for the Garden Route district.

“People are urged to limit travelling and to remain indoors as far as possible,” Bredell said.The Emergency Services manager for the Overberg district, Reinard Geldenhuys, said the situation is worsening and heavy rainfall is predicted until Sunday morning.

“An increase of flooding reports of low-lying homes is being reported. Damage to agricultural fields and loss of livestock are expected to be significant.

“Damage determination is limited by the continuous rain. Local municipalities have been able to cope with the prevention and recovery of flooding of homes and managing the pressure on the stormwater systems.

“It is expected that, with the increased extent and duration of the low cutoff system, additional assistance will be required,” Geldenhuys said.

Marvin Charles

Tales from a hospital bed: I might be going home soon

May 7th 2021 at 14:14

Friday, 7 May

Day 15

Of the 10 elevators on our floor, seven work most of the time.

But one of them makes an alarming beeping noise when it moves and another makes an ominous snapping sound.

If I go missing, please ask them to check the elevators

I was having a smoke downstairs and it was going well until my brain temporarily stalled.

ALSO READ: Tales from a hospital bed: A lesson in patience and real equality

After taking a drag, I put my mask on, and then I breathed out.

The smoke got trapped and I breathed it back in, leaving me doubled over while coughing and spluttering.

One of the security guards thought it was very funny.

Gareth popped past for a visit.

It was great to see him, and we had a good laugh about something silly.

He dropped off a whole bag of food, sweets and smokes. I shared some of it with Frans.

Turns out Bongani was quiet because someone knocked him against the back of his head with a brick.

But he was feeling better, so he’s gone home.

His replacement, Rennie, was also assaulted. A group of five men broke his shoulder, and possibly his wrist.

‘Wrong place, wrong time,” he says, taking it in his stride.

Sikhumbuzo is recovering from his second op and the doctors say he’s doing well.

I also got some good news from the doctors 🙂

The tissue and skin in my toe is regrowing and the bones have been realigned.

They’ve also taken me off my drip, which means no more antibiotics.

They want to keep me under observation for a bit, but I think I might be home free soon.

Prince Misuzulu Zulu named in queen’s will as new king

May 7th 2021 at 13:30

Prince Misuzulu Zulu has been announced as the new king of the Zulu nation.

In a reading of the late regent Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu’s will by royal house lawyer advocate Griffiths Madonsela on Friday evening, Prince Misuzulu was named as his late mother’s preferred candidate to ascend to the throne.

The will reading took place at KwaKhangelamankengane Palace in Nongoma.

Immediately after the announcement, the occasion turned into chaos, with heckling and commotion, after Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi – the traditional prime minister of the Zulu nation – instructed Prince Thokozani Zulu to sit down.

Prince Thokozani, late King Goodwill Zwelithini’s son with another queen, was trying to address the gathering.

#sabcnews #sabckzn Chaos has erupted at Kwakhethomthandayo ending the meeting where Regent Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu nominated her son Prince Misuzulu Zulu. There was a hand from someone who called Thulani was about to ask a question, hauling started pic.twitter.com/NMROu4AYCD

— Nonkululeko Hlophe (@Leko3) May 7, 2021

SABC News reported that gunshots were heard amid the commotion and that Prince Misuzulu and his siblings were whisked away to safety.

Earlier on Friday, Prince Misuzulu made his first public appearance since the death of Queen Mantfombi Shiyiwe Zulu last week and disrupted memorial proceedings.

The prince was accompanied by Zulu regiments marching into the marquee where the official memorial of the queen was taking place with prayer in session.

This is a developing story.

OP-ED: ‘We don’t know this General Motau,’ says MK National Council

May 7th 2021 at 13:17

General Mojo Motau, former chief of military intelligence, has recently received attention from the media and, interestingly, from within the ANC leadership circles as well.

This is ostensibly because he is a former cadre of Umkhonto weSizwe (MK) and a former member of MK Military Headquarters (MHQ), who is on a solitary mission to save the ANC from its demise. This is the weirdest and most recklessly opportunistic development ever since the ANC was unbanned in 1990.

While it is historically correct that during the struggle the majority of the ANC’s tested cadres were members of Umkhonto weSizwe, it is politically incorrect and naïve to suggest that ANC cadres are only those who were in the military wing as insinuated by Motau.

ALSO READ: Former SANDF spy ‘an enemy of the ANC’

The ANC fought the struggle on many fronts, as defined broadly by the four pillars of its strategy to overcome apartheid rule. In all these fronts cadres were honed and developed by the ANC to advance the struggle. This work equally produced sterling cadres of the ANC.

Motau may well be among those ANC members who were assigned important responsibilities by the ANC in exile. In that regard, he is better placed to speak for himself. However, the MK National Council (MKNC) wishes to place it on record that Motau was never a member of MK-MHQ before the suspension of the armed struggle in 1990.

In this regard, the ANC submission to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) provides all the relevant details of cadres who were deployed in its underground command structures in all countries where they were established.

In keeping with the principle of the National Council to insist that all MK members provide details of their backgrounds in order to curb cases of fraud, MK National Council publicly challenges Motau to provide information about where he underwent his military training, with who and under whose command, the detachment he belongs to, if he was trained internally, to indicate which machinery trained him and when.

Lastly, General Motau must provide us with his nom de guerre, i.e. his MK name.

As a matter of principle, and not a demand which seeks to single out Motau, the MKNC believes that the above protocol is the only way to ascertain the bona fides of all former members of Umkhonto weSizwe.

Motau did well to join the military after the unbanning of the ANC and the suspension of the armed struggle in 1990. He is a peace-time general, he must stay in his lane and not meddle in endeavours he evidently knows little about. He must enjoy his good pension and not destroy whatever credibility he may have by bringing the new democratic people’s defence establishment into disrepute.

The touchstone of the transformation of our defence establishment since 1994 is the civil-military relations doctrine, which the South African National Defence Force’s (SANDF’s) top brass is schooled in – to place South Africa’s military establishment under the political will and desires of South Africans.

Our country is at crossroads, this is crystallised by the titanic battles in our organisation, the ANC. This comes as no surprise to many who understand the challenges of transforming a society fraught with contradictions such as our country have.

ALSO READ: Army Chief’s ‘soldiers not activists’ stance welcomed

The pronounced fault lines of greed and corruption in the ANC today speaks to new challenges in our society. That Motau believes he can find solutions to ideological questions, policies, strategies and operational modalities which are so involved and wide ranging, over one sunny, Friday afternoon in Pretoria is blatantly arrogant and an insult.

Whereas Motau pretends to be inspired by the desire to see the preservation of the ANC, a careful reading of his declaration points to a nefarious plot to decimate the ANC. Two specific demands stands out in this respect.

The first is the suggestion that the most senior body or authority of the ANC between conferences must be dissolved without any suggestion on how that authority should be re-established. The second is the proposal that the organisation must plunge itself into internecine wars, confusion and anarchy by pointing out apartheid spies within the ANC.

Unassailable ANC leaders are spoken about in patronising terms and in a manner that isolates them from the broad membership, while those who are influential and serve to connect the organisation to the grassroots are vilified and demonised.

The perspective on how to deal with the national conjecture confronting us, as propagated by Motau, exposes the lack of the fundamental understanding that the masses are the makers of history.

The people must understand for themselves why things are wrong, and why we must all fight hard to change our way of doing business both in government and in the ANC for posterity. His commandist mentality, typical of militarism, unfortunately believes that you can effect societal solutions through orders from above.

This further corroborates our submission that Motau has no experience of Umkhonto wesizwe politico-military training, otherwise he would have had sight of the correct azimuth on this matter.

It has been our observation that since our democracy was ushered in 1994, moments of political uncertainty, anxiety and agitation have always been precipitated by documents churned out by the intelligence structures in government. Motau and those he is in cahoots with must not undermine our people’s intelligence and patience.

The MKNC calls on all our people, workers, youth and students, professionals, the churches, political parties, business leaders and civil society in general to step up to the plate, and exercise maximum vigilance.

Our constitutional order must be defended at all costs. No generals, quislings or benevolent militaries must be allowed to usurp our inalienable right to self-determination.

In our many political and social formations we must reclaim the right to develop our constitutional democracy and our country for posterity. The National Council can always be counted among those who occupy the front trenches.

We will not let them pass, victory or death!

Gregory Nthatisi is the acting general secretary of the MK National Council

Nadal defeat casts cloud over Roland Garros bid

May 7th 2021 at 12:39

Rafael Nadal lost 6-4, 6-4 to Germany’s Alexander Zverev in the Madrid Open quarter-finals on Friday, casting doubts over the Spaniard’s form ahead of this month’s French Open.

Even in Barcelona, however, Nadal needed to save a championship point to beat Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.

World number two Nadal is hoping to clinch a 14th Roland Garros title and record-setting 21st major in the French capital.

Zverev’s impressive straights-set win at the Caja Magica earns him a meeting with Dominic Thiem in the Madrid semis, in what will be a repeat of last year’s US Open final, which was won by Thiem.

After losing to world number eight Andrey Rublev in Monaco, Nadal was convincingly beaten by Zverev and the spotlight will be on the 34-year-old now in Rome next week, his last tournament before heading to Paris.

ALSO READ: Osaka, Nadal win top Laureus sports awards

It started well for Nadal when he broke Zverev to love to lead 4-2 in the first set, Zverev serving a double fault to give away the first advantage.

But the world number five immediately hit back and then pulled away, four straight games clinching him the set.

A whipping forehand down the line put Zverev up another break midway through the second and while Nadal resisted more pressure in the seventh game to hold, Zverev served out an impressive victory after an hour and 44 minutes.

Thiem had earlier come from a set down to beat John Isner 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 and reach the last four.

The 36-year-old Isner has never been at his most comfortable on clay but he caught Thiem cold by breaking early to claim the opening set.

But Thiem ripped a forehand pass to open up a break opporunity at 3-2 in the second, which the Austrian took when Isner hit the net with a volley.

Thiem was reading Isner’s serve better by the time the match went to a decider but it was not until 4-4 that he struck again, when he chased down three Isner volleys to serve for victory. He closed out the win in just under two hours.

“He’s one of the best servers in history, especially here in the altitude, it bounces high and it’s so difficult to return,” said Thiem after reaching the semi-finals for the fourth successive time.

“To start with a break down is almost like losing the first set but I stayed focused, kept a good fighting spirit. Very few points decide that kind of game and that’s how I turned things around in the second set.”

What to do this Mother’s Day

May 7th 2021 at 12:30

Don’t know what to do on Mother’s Day to spoil the special lady in your life? She’ll love a road trip to one of these fun destinations.

Nirox Sculpture Park, Krugersdorp

An artist’s paradise coupled with a picnic spot, Nirox Sculpture Park has well-manicured and cultivated lawns, arbores, turfs, streams and marshes.

It is placed on the grassy banks of the Blaauwbankspruit River adjoining the Kkatlhamphi Private Nature Reserve and inhabited by assorted local game and birdlife.

The park is home to many implanted artistic sculptures and installations that give plenty of great selfie opportunities. It’s a great place to spend a day enjoying mother nature.

Open to the public on weekends and public holidays. Hours: 10am-4pm, or by special arrangements during the week

Maropeng Cradle of Humankind

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Just 21 minutes drive from Nirox is Maropeng, also known as the Cradle of Humankind. This award-winning exhibition, focusing is a lesson on the origins of mankind, giving numerous experiences and lessons on the origins of humans over millions of years.

From the creation of planets to the world we live in, it’s a lesson in fossils such as Homo naledi to the tools mankind used in the Stone Age and real-life views of what life would have looked like.

Operating times: Days: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays Maropeng 9am-4.30pm (final tour at 4.20pm)

The Upside Down House

Located at Hartbeespoort Dam, a fascinating one-of-a-kind house that has to be experienced to be understood. Even then it will be slightly confusing, a mind-blowing house built upside down.

All the furniture inside, which would usually be on the floor, is upside down, making for amazing photo opportunities and popular with all members of the family. This is one of 10 upside-down houses all over the world.

It’s said that those who visit the house tend to stay for a few hours trying to understand the mind-defying illusion that it is.

Contacts : Address: R3 Hartbeeshoek Road, Hartbeespoort, 0216, Opens 9am Thu · More hours Phone: 063 100 9858

Howick Falls

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A place through which the Umngeni River flows north of Pietermaritzburg and to the east of the N3 is Howick Falls gorge walk, Start at the bottom of Harvard Street in Howick, KZN.

The falls are a popular tourist attraction simply because they showcase the true beauty of mother nature in South Africa. Places to stay are close by in the Howick area with an array of B&Bs, apartments and villas to rent.

Kruger National Park: Lion Sands Tinga Lodge

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If you’re looking for something different, this is the perfect place for you. Nestled along the banks of the perennial Sabie River, with breathtaking views which are all the better appreciated from the comfort of African contemporary luxury.

Exclusive accommodation, sensory comforts, intuitive service, good food and fine South African wine come together to promise a safari in style; a Lion Sands Original.

Contact: Address: Sabi Sand Reserve, Kruger National Park, 1260 Phone: 011 880 9992

The Botshabelo Mission Station and Historical Village

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A culturally enjoyable and educational experience in the Mpumulanga province, Middleburg village is popular for lessons in South African history and visually arresting historic buildings.

Botshabelo Mission Station is placed within a small game reserve, with an open-air museum Ndebele village with arts and crafts stores. The Ndebele tribe are known for their bright and colourful beadwork, murals and jewellery.

Enquiries can be made: 27 (0) 13 243 2253/4

Cherry Glamping

Fancy a few nights of glamping?  Cherry Glamping at Elgin in the Western Cape is just the spot.

Elgin is a large, area of land surrounded by mountains in the Overberg region of South Africa about 70 km southeast of Cape Town.

The deluxe tents are 12 fully-furnished enclosures, outfitted with a kitchen, communal lounge area, fireplace and dining table. For those who enjoy a good steak, there’s a braai area with a lapa.

Contacts: Address: N2 N2 Elgin, 7180, Phone: 082 788 9837

Compiled by Thami Kwazi 

Magashule: My suspension is a ‘banishment order’ similar to apartheid

May 7th 2021 at 12:04

ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule says the conditions of his suspension are draconian and akin to apartheid.

In an exclusive, wide-ranging interview with the SABC News’ Samkele Maseko and Bulelani Phillip, the beleaguered Magashule reiterated that the step-aside guidelines were being implemented hypocritically remove him.

During Magashule’s suspension, he has been barred from:

  • Carrying out the duties and responsibilities of his office as secretary-general
  • Representing  the organisation publicly  and or in any other form
  • Making public pronouncements  on matters  related to the organisation
  • Engaging in the mobilisation of ANC structures, any other organisations  or individuals, including  on your stepping aside and matters related thereto

He added that the criminal charges against, where he is implicated in corruption related to the Free State asbestos audit, were bogus because he was being charged with “oversight and negligence”.

Magashule: I’m saying the ANC is acting in an unfair manner, I have not committed any crime, I’ve been charged with oversight, what is that? #sabcnews

— Natasha Nokuthula Phiri (@NatashaN_Phiri) May 7, 2021

“I’m being follow. I’m bugged. I can’t believe I’m still living in apartheid. They arrest you and the next thing you are poisoned in prison,” Magashule said.

ALSO READ:  Could Magashule’s outcome see a formation of a new party?

Asked about his relationship with his deputy, Jessie Duarte, who served him with his suspension letter, Magashule said he was “dismayed” but he continued to have a “wonderful” relationship with her.

“I know comrade Jessie. We have been in the trenches together,” said Magashule.

Magashule reiterated his commitment to the ANC, saying he would stay in the ANC until he dies.

“I will never allow any individual to take the ANC away from me,” he said.

Asked if he expects to be expelled from the ANC at the weekend’s special national executive committee (NEC) meeting, he said the NEC could not be a judge and jury.

Magashule also said he respected every leader of the ANC, when quizzed by Maseko about “hating President Cyril Ramaphosa”.

Magashule said he would attend the weekend’s special NEC) meeting, despite his suspension letter written on Monday and leaked on Wednesday, clearly indicating he would not be allowed to participate in any party duties while he is suspended.

Watch the interview below, courtesy of the SABC News.

READ NEXT: ANC NEC in ‘do or die’ meeting over step aside resolution

10 sweet Mother’s Day quotes to add to your card this year

May 7th 2021 at 12:00

It’s easy for words to fail you when it’s time to use them for something important.

When it comes to expressing how grateful you are about the mother in your life, finding the words might be harder than usual when writing your Mother’s Day card. Mother’s Day gifts are complete when accompanied with a heartfelt message.

Lucky for you, we have compiled a list of some powerful messages from famous and non-famous people about their mothers. This list can guide you in what to say and can even inspire an even sweeter message from you.

Here are a few that you can use this Mother’s Day:

“To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colours of a rainbow.” Maya Angelou

“The mother’s heart is the child’s schoolroom.” Henry Ward Beecher

“Life doesn’t come with a manual, it comes with a mother.” Unknown

“A mother is she who can take the place of all others, but whose place no one else can take” Cardinal Mermillod

“All that I am, or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother” Abraham Lincoln

“To the whole world, you are a caring and loving mother. To me, you are the whole world.” Unknown

“Mother is the heartbeat of the home and without her, there seems to be no heartthrob.” Leroy Brownlow

“Mothers hold their children’s hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.” Unknown

“The loveliest masterpiece of the heart of God is the heart of a mother.” St Therese of Lisieux

“A mother’s arms are more comforting than anyone else’s.” Princess Diana

Mother’s Day is about reminding moms how special they are to us, whether it’s your wife, sister, mother or grandmother. Your words will mean the world to them, and the gratitude will be felt long after Mother’s Day. Don’t forget the gift to go with that as well.

ALSO READ: Cheerful Mother’s Day gift ideas under R500

Free agents must show full commitment to Proteas – Smith

May 7th 2021 at 11:51

Doing well in the Indian Premier League will obviously help, but CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith says free agents will need to prove their total commitment to the Proteas if they are to earn a recall to the national side.

Faf du Plessis, Chris Morris, AB de Villiers and Imran Tahir all put in noteworthy performances before the IPL was suspended earlier this week, one match away from the halfway stage, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Many fans would want all four of them to be back in India in October, representing South Africa at the T20 World Cup.

Smith said that while the door was not closed for them to be selected, there were certain conditions that needed to be met first.

ALSO READ: Smith praises BCCI for getting SA IPL players out of India

Asked specifically about all-rounder Morris, he said: “I notice Chris said there have not been discussions with him, but he joined the high performance programme in lockdown last year.

“No-one has a definitive right to play for the Proteas, it’s up to the selectors and the player’s performance on the field. Lately Chris’s performances have been really good, both in the IPL and in our T20.

“But we can’t choose someone who is going to go in half-arsed, who is 50/50 about it,” Smith said this week. “We need to know that the player is fully committed and will do everything required and everything for the team.

“It’s a question that applies to all of the free agents, who are technically still always available for the Proteas. AB de Villiers has officially retired so that’s a different discussion that is ongoing.”

ALSO READ: Confirmed: SA to tour West Indies, door open for AB’s return

The West Indies have won two of the last three T20 World Cups despite many of their top players being scattered around the globe, and free agents like Chris Gayle, Samuel Badree and Andre Russell did the business for them in the last tournament, held in 2016 in India.

“The free agents are generally more experienced in the format than most players and we’ve seen the success the West Indies have had using them, so it’s definitely something we would consider,” Smith said. “But the selectors also have to consider team dynamics and the type of players we have in our own system.

“Right now the focus is on trying to get the best squad together in the build-up. We have 15-17 T20s lined up, including plenty of sub-continent preparation, so the squad will have plenty of time together. It should be a nice build-up for October.”

ALERT: What to do when you spot missing cheetah in Tshwane

May 7th 2021 at 11:03

Residents of Tshwane have been warned to be on the lookout for a cheetah that escaped from Rietvlei Nature Reserve on Tuesday.

The city said on Friday the cheetah was still missing and was yet to be captured.

According to a statement by the reserve, the cheetah was introduced by the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) as part of the reserve’s conservation project to enhance cheetah numbers in the country.

“It is not clear how the animal escaped, but it is believed that it may have made use of a hole underneath the fence perimeter,” reads the statement.

The reserve said its fences were electrified, patrolled daily and repaired regularly to prevent these kind of incidents.

It said that the first sighting of the cheetah outside the reserve was reported to reserve management by an adjacent landowner.

“The nature reserve management immediately launched action to confirm the escape. Tracks and the animal sighting were confirmed on Tuesday,” reads the statement.

 

How to celebrate your late mom this Mother’s Day

May 7th 2021 at 11:00

Losing your mother is the single hardest thing any person can experience in their childhood or adult life. This is regardless of the nature of the relationship between a child and his mother.

The fact that the human you were born and birthed by is no longer in this world can change the trajectory of your life.

Grieving for your mother can therefore be a complicated journey that takes many years to navigate and get used to. Mother’s Day can be a triggering day for some, but even moms who are not here can still be celebrated.

When dealing with loss and grief, the symbolism of certain activities can contribute significantly to the process.

Here’s what you can get up to celebrate your late mother this Mother’s Day:

Write her a letter

Nothing can be quite as cathartic as writing a letter through pen and page. This exercise could allow an experience of truly feeling like you are communicating with her. If she were here today, what would you tell her? What would you talk about? It might be hard to have an actual conversation with your mother in her absence, so a letter can help you do that. Tell her how much she means to you and how much you miss her. The experience could leave you much lighter.

Take her flowers

Not everyone believes in going to the graveyard to visit their late family members. That physical closeness, however, can be just what every child needs on Mother’s Day, even adults. Let it be a little visit to her final home. Drop off her favourite colour flowers on her grave. It will feel like you did something super special for her.

Cook her favourite/secret recipe

Not every mom left a secret recipe in the family cookbook, but we know which meals they loved more. In commemoration of her beautiful life, cook this meal and enjoy making it like she would enjoy eating it. If she had a recipe, then this might be a lot more fun for you. Invite people she was close to, or the other mothers in your life and make a true celebration out of it.

ALSO READ: Three easy Mother’s Day breakfast ideas

Plant flowers in memory of her

This might be a fun activity the whole family can be a part of. The kids will love the idea of being part of a symbolic act they know will make you happy. If you have a backyard, plant a couple of seeds at one spot of the garden and watch them grow over time. You can also get a flower pot and plant some flowers in memory of her. This will be a beautiful reminder of how things grow even after death. Just remember to water them.

Get involved in her favourite hobby

If mom was obsessed with cleaning the house, then happy cleaning! Talk about killing two birds with one stone; a clean house and a connection with your mom. The experience might spark some good memories that will brighten up your day. Share some of these stories with your family as you get into your mother’s mode.

 

Foodie ‘party’ to save our pasta dishes

May 7th 2021 at 10:53

It is okay to play with your food. This rarely goes wrong when having fun in the kitchen, one of the ways to get out of your mundane daily meals.

One of these is the favoured starch, pasta. Pasta dishes are family favourites, they are comfort meals and known for their quick and easy recipes. Iconic South African pasta brand Fatti’s & Moni’s is taking an exciting leap and concept of a parody political party called Freedom Party to inspire people to cook delicious new pasta meals.

The hilarious launch happened in the beautiful Houghton Hotel, attended by the party’s influencers, media personalities and chefs on Wednesday evening, 5 May.

Just like political parties, the brand’s “cabinet” was carefully selected to deliver the foodie needs of the republic. The party president is Metro FM host, singer and Idols SA judge Unathi Nkayi who will be steering the ship of helping create magic with pasta.

It was announced that Minister of Lifestyle is Lesego Semenya known as LesDaChef.  The chef said he will be delivering South African flavours infused with other cuisines, on brand to his style of cooking.

“Thinking out of the box when it comes to pasta, you don’t have to do bolognese or a lasagna. You actually can go crazy with them.”

And this was the case with the idea of the manifesto launch menu by himself. Starters were farfalle chicken, with bacon and Caesar salad, very similar to a pasta salad, quick and easy to make. “People always assume that making pasta must be heavy, that is not the case,” Semenya says.

ALSO READ: WATCH: Tashas owner talks all things new menu

If you didn’t know, Caesar salad was created by an Italian immigrant working in Mexican and American restaurants. Semenya has built a strong online community of home cooks and was more than happy to continue sharing his tips.

The second starter of the night was a creamy elbow macaroni with amasi (cultured buttermilk) and exotic mushrooms. As in the mains the pastas were cooked al dente, still firm to the a bite.

One of the mains was butternut and baby spinach gnocchi. The gnocchi was not the traditional potato pasta, rather the shape of it and dried. The dish’s sauce with onion was melt in the mouth and the vegetable perfectly cooked, with a finishing of parmesan cheese.

A pasta dessert? Well, of course. Pasta is never associated with any sweetness, but LesdaChef cleverly incorporated the spaghetti in the custard pudding really well. It was well balanced, not too sweet, with the spaghetti adding a necessary texture. The pudding was topped with strawberry sauce, caramelised honeycomb and a chocolate sauce.

The cabinet also includes celebrity chef and fine dining restauranteur David Higgs. He was were given the matching portfolio of Minister of Fine Dining, as he is the former executive chef of The Saxon, owner of Marble and Saint restaurants.

He said: “The whole idea is to give fine dining ideas, five-star dishes that you can make in the comfort of your home.”

His go-to pasta recipe with cocktail tomatoes: Cut them into half, drizzle olive oil, put them in the oven at 180°C. When they are soft and juicy, add them into fresh pasta and more olive oil and enjoy.

Lastly, the Minister of Health is Phuti Moabelo, the mother of twin boys aged one who will be dishing out recipes that please the taste buds but won’t affect the waistline.

It’s going to be pasta galore on Fatti’s & Moni’s social media pages every Wednesday as the ministers share their weekly recipes.

Does this still matter? Ayanda Ncwane accused of bleaching skin

May 7th 2021 at 10:42

Real Housewives of Durban (RHOD)  star, businesswoman and artist manager Ayanda Ncwane’s name has risen over the past months.

Ncwane’s husband is the late gospel singer, Sifiso Ncwane. She has continued to carry on his legacy since his death in December 2016. Ncwane has built a strong career in her own right and her appearance on Showmax’s RHOD cemented that for her.

Viewers were divided about some of her actions in the first season but what also caught the attention was her fashion sense and beauty looks. When a Twitter user compared how Ayanda looked years ago to now, the difference in skin complexion was noticeable.

Look what money did to Ayanda Ncwane????
Before and After pic.twitter.com/0GGy3cRkQz

— Sharon Shaz (@KabzShaz) May 6, 2021

But whether this still matters or not is debatable, as some publications picked up on the discussion. Many people who commented on the picture didn’t think it was a big deal. Times have changed, people are less judgmental.

ALSO READ: Are you still with Jacob Zuma? RHOD’s LaConco dodges answering

These is so me once I become monied???? pic.twitter.com/xZmhIlfn2W

— C-na (@Cna09506650) May 6, 2021

I think it’s camera quality we all have our darker photos abo ma 2007

— Sammie Dube (@dube_sammie) May 7, 2021

Khanyi Mbau has been open about her skin lightening. In July 2020, she gave advice to people looking at skin lightening. explaining that it doesn’t make her “less black”.

“Being black doesn’t mean you have to look black. Being black is a state of being, being black is a sense of spirit. Being black is how you think and how you see yourself. It doesn’t mean you need to look indigenous. Why are we living in a world that won’t let us explore and be who we want to be? Period.”

RELATED: Khanyi Mbau addresses skin lightening, ‘Being black is a state of being’

She added that skin lightening had evolved and was less dangerous.

Cheating, divorce, separations: Tough week for relationships

May 7th 2021 at 10:42

If there is anything this past week has reminded us is that relationships and marriage are complex.

This week alone, we witnessed the public cheating scandal of Prince Kaybee and the formal separation of the one of the wealthiest man in the world, Bill Gates. This is over and above the public separations of Black Coffee and Enhle Mbali, and Malusi Gigaba and Norma Mngoma.

It seems not to matter if you are a billionaire,  famous DJ, politician or regular folk. Connecting with and maintaining a relationship with another human is challenging. This is also regardless of how long you have been together.

Since Covid-19 was declared a global pandemic in March 2020, the divorce rate has increased globally. In South Africa, the divorce rate has increased by 20%.

So, what does Covid-19 and these past few weeks teach us about relationships?

Relationships are hard

The bit about two people who commit to be together till death do them part is beautiful. However, more conversations need to take place about what happens when money problems surface, or children arrive. Home schooling and financial issues have been among the two biggest issues contributing to the spike in the divorce rate.

Children, for instance, change the dynamics of relationships. The woman has less time to spend with her partner, her body changes, her libido drops and she survives on less sleep. When these issues are not openly discussed, partners may seek solace somewhere else, then the issues may begin.

Coach and practising non-monogamist Ndzalama Ngwenya believes that when couples don’t have open and honest conversations about the state of the relationship, or their feelings about the relationships, couples are enabling each other to misbehave with no accountability.

Would Zola have accepted it if Prince Kaybee told him that he met someone he liked and would like to explore that? They both will never know, because the damage has already been done. He lied.

Ndzalama asserts that people should be allowed to explore their feelings, both male and female.

Relationships and exclusivity

The seriousness of a committed relationship is a big game-changer for people. For someone who got involved with a person that is prone to cheating, like Norma, you expect trust and commitment to be elevated. “Marriage elevates the seriousness of a commitment,” Ngwenya says.

The woman also believes that after marriage their husband’s happiness is their job and no one else’s.

Ngwenya also believes people don’t want their partners to see them happy, especially if the source of that happiness is another person. That, for her, is the foundation of infidelity. For a short while, Prince Kaybee’s “mistress” made him happy, happy enough to cheat on his girlfriend.

Non-monogamy

“Human beings are inherently monogamous,” Ngwenya says, but human connection is inevitable. This is why a person can have a best friend and still meet other people and befriend them.

When your partner meets someone new that they like, or they fall in love with a colleague, the dishonesty that follows is what will make or break a relationship. Ngwenya calls this “pacifying the issue” because it is better to avoid the hard conversation than to tell their partner the truth, understandably so.

The complexities of the human condition may conclude that one partner is doing something wrong, or is not doing enough. Women usually carry this burden, blaming themselves for their partner’s infidelity.

This defeats the purpose, considering that the major reason why the man would lie about cheating in the first place is to “protect” the woman.

“Human beings are social beings and they should be allowed to explore what the connection they have with other people holds for them,” Ngwenya says.

Is communication the way forward?

Open conversations before a relationship commitment will go a long way for couples. These conversations should center around how couples navigate certain realities of relationships like kids, finances, sexual problems and meeting new people.

Couples should then create relationship rules in line with their open conversations. The health of the relationship is how honest we are about how we feel. If your wife’s libido is too low, is it easier to have sex with someone else, or have conversations with them about it?

Choosing the easier route is the biggest contributor to the breakdown of a relationship.

SA’s new drivers’ licences – no more queues and available on your phone

May 7th 2021 at 10:40

In about two years’ time, motorists will be able to have their drivers’ licence card delivered to their homes within seven days and stored digitally on their cellphones.

The Department of Transport is in the last leg of implementing a new drivers’ licence card, and Minister Fikile Mbalula this week announced that sole producer of licences, the Driving Licence Card Account (DLCA), was currently in the last phase of designing the new drivers’ licence card.

The card, planned to be implemented in the 2022-2023 financial year, will include improved security features while complying with international standards, the department said.

The card is still to be approved by Parliament, but the department has some ambitious plans.

Why do we need new licences?

The current infrastructure is old and maintaining it is not cost-effective, department spokesperson Collen Msibi said.

This and the current 10-to-14 days turnaround time for application and delivery of drivers’ licence cards, he said, made it necessary for an upgrade.

ALSO READ: No grace period for vehicle disks expired during lockdown

“With improved equipment and re-engineered processes, the DLCA aims to reduce the turnaround time to seven days.

“With compliance to international and regional standards, the card will be internationally accepted. There will be no need to apply for an international driving licence when travelling overseas,” said Msibi.

The new technology would also enable the “seamless sharing of information” with other transport entities such as the Road Traffic Management Corporation.

No more queueing, as it is all online

The new system is also aimed at relieving the frustrations of long queues at testing centres, as applications and all other systems will operate online, even including the option of a delivery service, Msibi explained.

“The modernised card production system will mean that citizens can apply for a card online and even elect to have their card delivered to them. This will reduce the traffic at the testing centres.”

Motorists will also have the option of selecting to obtain the physical card or a digital version, which would be available on cellphones through an app.

“As a result, there is a need to modernise the card production system which means the new card with improved security features, re-engineering business processes, and training of staff,” said Msibi.

rorisangk@citizen.co.za

Pre-teen girl shoots three at US school

May 7th 2021 at 10:20

Los Angeles – A girl opened fire at a school in the northwestern US state of Idaho on Thursday, injuring three people before being disarmed by a teacher, police said.

The unnamed student at Rigby Middle School near Idaho Falls was in the sixth grade, meaning she would likely be aged 11 or 12.

WATCH: Man attempts suicide after killing wife

She “retrieved a handgun from her backpack, fired multiple rounds inside of the school and out,” said Jefferson County sheriff Steve Anderson.

Injuries suffered by two students and one staff member are not thought to be life-threatening, he said.

“During the shooting a teacher disarmed the student, and detained her until law enforcement took her into custody,” added Anderson at a press conference.

The shooting is being investigated by the FBI as well as local law enforcement.

The US has suffered a spate of mass shootings in recent weeks, including at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis, an office building in California, a grocery store in Colorado and at several spas in Atlanta.

President Joe Biden last month branded US gun violence an “epidemic” and an “international embarrassment”

There were more than 43,000 gun-related deaths in the United States last year, including suicides, according to the Gun Violence Archive.

Three easy Mother’s Day breakfast-in-bed ideas

May 7th 2021 at 10:17

 

There is no better way to start Mother’s Day than spoiling her from the get-go. Waking up to a cooked meal is always special. To celebrate your mom or the mother figure in your life is as simple as spoiling her with breakfast in bed.

Mom will love these easy breakfast in bed ideas, plus they won’t take hours to make.

Seeded Bread Omelettes

Ingredients

1⁄2 cup of crumbed SASKO Low GI Seeded
Brown Bread
3 eggs
Ready-made white sauce
Pinch of cayenne
Pinch of salt & pepper

READ NEXT: Four heart-healthy dessert recipes for Mother’s Day

Method

Pour hot white sauce over the breadcrumbs, mixing and mashing them well. Separate the egg yolk and white, whisking the whites until stiff.

Whisk yolk of eggs, cayenne, salt, and pepper until thick and stir into the white sauce and bread-crumbs mixture.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Cut and fold in the stiffly beaten egg whites to the mixture. In a hot, oiled medium frying pan turn in the omelet and cook lightly. Set the pan in the oven to dry on top of the omelet.

Remove pan from oven and serve.

Linseed and Soy, Chicken and egg quiche

Chicken quiche

Chicken and egg quiche. Picture: Supplied

Ingredients

1 kg cooked chicken
6 large eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground mustard
6 slices, cut into cubes of SASKO Low GI Linseed White Bread
1 cup grated cheese

ALSO READ: Proudly South African breakfast bake

Method

1. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, salt, and mustard together.
2. Stir in the bread cubes, cheese, and cooked chicken.
3. Pour into a greased baking dish.
4. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
5. Bake uncovered at 180°C for 40 min or until a knife inserted
comes out clean.

Honey and Oats French Toast Muffins

honey oats muffins

Honey and oats muffins. Picture

Ingredients

6 large eggs
2 cups milk
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1⁄2 tablespoons sugar
1 1⁄2 tablespoons vanilla extract
14 cups cubed SASKO Low GI Honey & Oats White Bread
Golden syrup for serving

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a muntin with butter. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, cinnamon, sugar, and vanilla extract.

Add cubed bread to the mixture and fold until combined and all of the liquid is absorbed. Divide the bread mixture into muntins, pressing it lightly into each cup to compact it.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Allow to cool for 5 minutes, scoop out and serve topped with golden syrup.

* This recipe was courtesy of SASKO.

WATCH: I’m done protecting Black Coffee, says a teary Enhle Mbali

May 7th 2021 at 10:17

South African actress, TV personality and recent divorcee Enhle Mbali has taken to social media to express her hurt at not being granted the protection order she filed against her ex husband, DJ Black Coffee.

ALSO READ: Black Coffee thanks supporters as court denies Enhle a protection order

Mbali applied for a restraining order against DJ Black Coffee in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court in April, where she was joined by activists outside the court showing their support for the actress with banners displaying #JusticeForEnhle,  #HandsoffEnhle and “Am I Next?”.

In a recent Instagram video posted by Enhle, she begins by telling her followers how she had been protecting Black Coffee for far too long and had been physically abused by the DJ in their marital home.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Enhle Mbali Mlotshwa (@enhlembali_)

“I have been protecting this man for far too long…this man lied in the court of law saying he went under my arm as tall as he is, knowing very well that he hit me, struck my hand twice and then pushed me of our marital home.”

Mbali continues about how her ex husband and father of her children had been psychological messing with her children, to the extent that her son had been emotionally affected by their divorce and by everything the DJ says to him.

ALSO READ: Black Coffee protection order ruling postponed

“He called my children telling them to stop the case. My child was crying, telling me that he no longer feels like a child any more because of the voice and because he has new siblings and so many other things.”

With tears welling in her eyes, Mbali tells her followers how she is done protecting Black Coffee, that she would be speaking out on everything she experienced in her marriage and during the divorce stages of her marriage.

Mbali said she would be holding a press conference where she would bring evidence to prove her statements and to prove the father of her children lied in court.

Could this be the real life Iron Man?

May 7th 2021 at 10:03

Aerospace company Gravity recently launched a jet suit that allows for human beings to actually fly.

The Gravity team in the UK has made it possible for people to partake in the human flight experience by taking part in group sessions with three jet suit flights and a lab tour.

The human flight experience can be found at its flight facility at the world-renowned Goodwood Estate, located just 90 minutes outside of London.

The experience comes at the cost of €2,000 Euros (R35,000) per person.

The Gravity team has also posted a number of videos on its Facebook page showcasing the set suit in motion going through a series of different tests and training.

In this video founder Richard Browning takes the jet suit out into the mountains on a paramedic trial to fly people in danger who need medical attention, then signals to the rest of the team once he gets there to show them exactly where they are.

This next video showcases Browning training with the jet suit and flying around an obstacle course.

The Gravity team has also released a book titled Taking on Gravity: A Guide to Inventing the Impossible from the Man Who Learnt to Fly. The book was written by Richard Browning and in it he tells the inspiring story behind the iconic jet suit and shares his creative principles for true innovation.

Reds on revenge mission, Crusaders on a roll for finals

May 7th 2021 at 09:53

The Queensland Reds are seeking revenge while across the Tasman, the Canterbury Crusaders will look to extend their dominance when Australia and New Zealand’s domestic Super Rugby competitions play their finals this weekend.

The Reds narrowly lost last year’s Super Rugby AU decider 28-23 to the ACT Brumbies and admit the defeat still smarts, setting up an epic rematch in front of 50,000 fans in Brisbane on Saturday.

Reds halfback Tate McDermott said footage of the Brumbies celebrating after last year’s win provided ample motivation for Saturday’s clash.

ALSO READ: Meet Lions tourist Duhan van der Merwe

“We’ve re-watched that final minute of the grand final, where you see them kick it out and there’s a bit of carry on and they win,” he said.

“There’s definitely been a fire burning since that moment last year that has really helped the team… we do owe them a lot from that game.”

The Reds have overtaken the Brumbies as Australia’s most consistent team this year, losing only once in an outstanding season that has included two victories over their Canberra-based rivals.

Coach Dan McKellar admitted his Brumbies were the underdogs but warned the Queenslanders not to expect an easy victory in front of what is likely to be a sold-out Suncorp Stadium.

Five-year streak

“We’re quite happy – backs to the wall, big crowd at Suncorp, just ourselves and our family to bounce off,” he said.

“We’ll go out there and prove a few people wrong and continue our reign as Australia’s leading team over a number of years. That’s the goal.”

Over in New Zealand, the Crusaders are red-hot favourites to defend the Super Rugby Aotearoa title, adding a second domestic championship to the record 10 international Super Rugby titles already in the trophy cabinet.

Victory against Waikato Chiefs in Christchurch on Saturday would make it five straight years the Crusaders have won Super Rugby or Super Rugby Aotearoa.

They are unbeaten in 24 post-season matches contested at home, including six finals, and coach Scott Robertson said it was not a record they would give up lightly.

ALSO READ: Bok boss Nienaber: ‘Phenomenal’ that Lions are on their way

“Occasions like this are exactly what we play for, the chance to represent the people of our region on the big stage,” he said.

By contrast, the Chiefs began the season as competition losing their first two matches to compound the pain of a winless 2020.

But a five-match run of success turned their campaign around, with coach Clayton McMillan saying the Chiefs felt a burden had been lifted and they could defeat anyone, even an outfit as formidable as the Crusaders.

“On any given day, any team can be beaten, and we’ve proven that,” he said.

“This weekend we are going down to Christchurch with confidence and believe we can upset the Crusaders.”

Arteta says he is right man for Arsenal despite Europa League ‘pain’

May 7th 2021 at 09:40

Mikel Arteta admits he feels “deep pain” at missing out on reaching the Europa League final but insists he is the right man to take Arsenal forward after a dismal season.

Arsenal were held to a goalless draw by Villarreal at the Emirates on Thursday, with former boss Unai Emery’s current side advancing to a final against Manchester United 2-1 on aggregate.

The exit leaves the Gunners, ninth in the Premier League, on the cusp of facing a first season without European football in 25 years — and their fifth consecutive campaign outside the Champions League — as pressure grows on Arteta.

“What I felt last night was a deep pain,” said the Spaniard, who won the FA Cup last season in his first campaign in charge of the club.

“The moment the club is in at the moment, with everything it has been through over the last months, I had a feeling that if we could take the team to the final, it could be a great turning point.

“I felt that responsibility and I was so eager to achieve that because I knew it could be a defining moment. Not being able to achieve it has been really tough personally, obviously.

“I know that we have disappointed a lot of people as well and that really hurts because we want to give the best to everybody but one thing I made clear is that to do what we want to do, I have no doubts that we are going to achieve it. If not, I wouldn’t be sat here.”

Arsenal are also on course for their lowest league finish since 1995.

Arteta, a former Arsenal player, said he understood the frustration of the fans, admitting their long absence from the Champions League was a “trend”.

“There are things to change, that’s for sure because no one is going to accept that at this football club,” he said.

“I am not going to accept that and the fans are not going to accept that. So we all have to push together to achieve something very different.”

Arteta said he took full responsibility for his part in the team’s struggles, saying he had invested “every drop of energy” since arriving in December 2019.

“But so far it has not been enough and this when the question mark comes, why it is not enough? Is it just a thing? Is it the manager? Is it many other stuff? What is it? And then this is football.

“Again, I repeat myself, last night that ball goes in, we win 1-0. You are in the final and it is a different world. But today that world doesn’t look very nice.”

Gatland: Mental health will be toughest challenge for Lions

May 7th 2021 at 09:36

Warren Gatland says looking after the mental health of his British and Irish Lions players could be his toughest challenge as they prepare for up to 10 weeks in a coronavirus bubble.

Head coach Gatland announced his 37-man tour party for the South Africa tour on Thursday, picking veteran Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones as captain.

Squad members – including those with no remaining English Premiership commitments – will meet for a training camp in Jersey in mid-June and return from South Africa on August 9.

“The big challenge for us is being in the bubble in South Africa and potentially having to quarantine when we come back,” said Gatland.

“If you add in the two-week camp before we go it could be up to 10 weeks away and in a bubble.

“The rugby side takes care of itself so it’s important we get the other stuff right and think about the players’ wellbeing and mental health.

“The rugby’s going to be the easy part. We need to get the other stuff right and then we’ve got a chance of performing on the field.”

ALSO READ: Bok boss Nienaber: ‘Phenomenal’ that Lions are on their way

The tourists hope to publish their revised schedule for South Africa next week with the eight fixtures culminating in a three-Test series against the world champion Springboks now taking place in Johannesburg and Cape Town only, reducing travel during the pandemic.

Former Wales coach Gatland admitted the tour would provide unique challenges. South Africa is Africa’s worst-affected country with more than 1.5 million infections and over 54,000 deaths.

On their return the players are likely to have to quarantine in isolation at a government-approved hotel, with South Africa on Britain’s red list of countries.

“The safety of the players is paramount and the mental health of the players comes first,” said Gatland. “Being in that bubble, being away from family, it will be about making sure we stay connected with our families.

“We’ll have to keep the players entertained, put things on for them — competitions, pool, darts, cards, casino nights, sing-songs, quizzes. We’ve got to be creative in that area.

“We’ll probably continue with the singing and choir practice that we’ve done in the past. That was successful for us. Those kinds of things are something that we need to get right.”

Secluded destinations to escape to in South Africa

May 7th 2021 at 09:32

People are still cautious when it comes to travelling and when they do, they often opt for more secluded destinations with minimal human contact and maximum contact with nature.

These cabins – whether it’s a traditional log cabin, a luxury cabin or a gyspy vargo you’re after – are the ideal escape from your home that has become your office and the answer to that much-needed digital detox.

Big Pod

Pretoria, Gauteng

Farmstays at Rosemary Hill is the latest craze, with Big Pod being the ideal family cabin sleeping up to six people. What originally started with one A-frame cabin at the beginning of lockdown has evolved into a range of comfy cabins perfect for a break from the city. These trendy cabins are a walking distance from the farm’s coffee shop and include breakfast.

Rate: R3,200 a night

 Rosemary Hill's Big Pod

The loft area at Rosemary Hill’s Big Pod.

The Sunset Dome

Tulbagh, Western Cape

La Bruyere farm’s 2-sleeper Sunset Dome allows you to experience some of the best sunsets in the valley. The self-catering cabin comes with electricity and its hot shower and bath both overlook the dam. There’s also a fruit and vegetable garden for guests to indulge in.

Rate: From R1,900 a night

Sunset Dome

The Sunset Dome’s bath views are simply out of this world.

Kloofsig

Memel, Free State

Although still in the planning phase of the actual cabins, Kloofsig’s farm cottage is cabin enough if you’re keen on exploring what the Witkoppe mountain range has to offer. Here a true off the grid experience is a given. The 8-sleeper cottage’s wood-fired hot tub, sandstone braai and traditional donkey boiler are just some of its unique features.

Rate: From R2,500 a night

Kloofsig

The Kloofsig hot tub is one for the books.

Treedom Villas & Vardos

Wilderness, Western Cape

In addition to its popular 4-sleeper villa, two of Treedom’s five gypsy vardos have now been completed. These 2-sleeper, boho-style vardos come with outdoor barrel bubble baths, fire pits and a forest greenhouse for lounging and dining. The Owl Vardo also has an outdoor rocking bed, while the Gypsy Vardo comes with an Instagrammable moon swing.

Rate: From R1,700 a night

Treedom Villas

Treedom Villas and Vardos celebrates the importance of moms say owners Debbie and Marc.

Antbear Eco Lodge

Estcourt, Kwazulu-Natal

Become one with nature in Antbear Eco Lodge’s luxury cave. With a wooden, cabin-like deck overlooking the Drakensberg, this cave with actual rock art on the walls effortlessly brings nature indoors. It’s an eco-experience like no other and includes dinner, bed and breakfast.

Rate: From R2,100 per person per night

Antbear's Cave

Antbear’s cave deck boasts magnificent views.

Buff and Fellow

George, Western Cape

Overlooking the beautiful Outeniqua Mountains, Buff and Fellow’s eco-friendly cabins, pods and coconuts are the perfect escape. Guests get to enjoy both nature and farm life with free-to-use Indian canoes, a help-yourself vegetable garden, bonfire bonding, fresh eggs from the working farm’s Cluck and Fellow chicken coop and more.

Rate: From R1,250 a night

Hot tub views Buff and Fellow

Hot tub views at Buff and Fellow.

AfriCamps

Hoedspruit, Limpopo

Dotted around a dam popular for catch-and-release fishing, AfriCamps’ Hoedspruit glamping tents can easily go for cabins as they come with all the bells and whistles. One of the unique selling points is their outdoor wood-fired hot tubs and at Hoedspruit camp you get to book a guided game drive to the Kruger National Park or other nearby reserves.

Price: From R1,340 per couple sharing per night

Escape at Africamps Hoedspruit

Total serenity at Africamps Hoedspruit.

Pinetree Cabin at Protea Farm

Montagu, Western Cape

Protea Farm’s Pinetree cabin is the perfect summer hideout, but also a romantic winter escape. Don’t miss out on the Montagu Tractor Trip, boasting the most spectacular views from 1,500m above sea level, or the potjiekos served on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Rate: From R700 per couple sharing per night

The Pintree Cabib

The Pinetree Cabin boasts the most spectacular snow experiences in winter.

MTO Tsitsikamma Hiking Trail

Nature’s Valley, Western Cape

The Tsitsikamma Hiking Trail’s rustic cabins are perfect for both serious hikers and slackpackers. These humble overnight cabins all boast magnificent views worth working for and include bunk beds for up to 24 people. They come with basic cooking supplies, braai facilities, showers, toilets and hot water shower buckets.

Rate: From R200 per person per day

Witklipfontein Eco Lodge

Vredefort Dome, Free State

Located on one of the original farms that form part of the Vredefort Dome, a Unesco World Heritage Site, Witklipfontein’s 10-sleeper self-catering unit boasts beautiful scenery, game, art, fresh farm eggs and produce from the permaculture vegetable garden. A green roof, rammed earth and sandbag walls bring you back to earth instantly.

Rate: From R6,800 for 6 people

Reading corners are at the order of the day at Witklipfontein

Reading corners are at the order of the day at Witklipfontein.

 

WATCH: Different cities, never together? Signs of Somizi and Mohale jigsaw

May 7th 2021 at 09:22

It has been a hectic week in the world of local celebrities, as the rich and famous danced and wriggled their way out of the news cycle.

The dominant subject matter wasn’t just Prince Kaybee’s cheating scandal, but what’s happening with the once beloved and favourite South African couple Somizi Mhlongo and Mohale Motaung.

Motaung’s  personal life has been well documented for years, so has his marriage. However he drew the line earlier this year with reports concerning his husband. He said earlier this year it was off limits, as the constant reports of their reported marital troubles continued.

Watch the video above for all the latest on what happened and what other celebrities had to say.

When Mohale had a sit-down interview on Jacaranda FM with Mack Rapapali earlier this week, his cryptic words added more confusion as to what is really going on.

The two haven’t been photographed together in months and are rarely seen in the same city. Somizi posted on Friday that he was off to Cape Town for a hosting gig, while Mohale is on a media tour promoting savings, budgeting and insurance targeted at university students.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Somizi (@somizi)

In other news, Fetch Your Life hitmaker Kabelo Motsamai, known as Prince Kaybee, would rather have his music getting all the attention but this was not the case.

He apologised after on Twitter: “I cheated, I humiliated my girlfriend publicly. To the people I have disappointed, the businesses I represent, my girlfriend and my mother I profusely apologise from the bottom of my heart.”

Ouch! Prince Kaybee to take legal action against ‘Hazel’

First pic of Katlego Maboe all smiles since cheating scandal

WATCH: Jacob Zuma gets down in TikTok dance challenge

What really happened between Prince Kaybee and Zola?

Three easy Mother’s Day breakfast in bed ideas

Kerr wants TTM players to replicate performance against Chiefs in the Cup final

May 7th 2021 at 09:04

Tshakuma Tsha Madzivhandila head coach Dylan Kerr has asked his players to play the way they did in their victory over Kaizer Chiefs when they meet up with Chippa United in the final of the Nedbank Cup at the Free State Stadium on Saturday.

ALSO READ: Why former Chiefs and Downs winger Lebese is not playing at TTM

TTM go into the match after a morale boosting 2-1 win over Amakhosi in a midweek DStv Premiership clash.

Kerr,  admits that league games are different to cup games, but says his charges are eager to lift the cup against Vladislav Heric’s Chilli Boys and there is excitement all round at the club leading to the game and there is a clean bill of health in his squad.

“I hope that we can replicate or surpass our performance against Chiefs in the cup final. I told the players that it is about winning the trophy and not financial gain. It is a cup final, so league form goes out the window. The players are excited and want to impress. This week we have had training sessions with no injures, which is almost unheard of. It is an important game for the club and players, it could be the one and only chance for these players to reach a cup final. Our opponents have got a couple of good results behind them and have a new coach (Heric),” said the TTM mentor.

“We have the disadvantage of one day’s fewer training because we played on Tuesday. But we have put in a good performance, which was very successful.”

The TTM coach wants to make history with the club by becoming the first Limpopo club to lift the Nedbank trophy.

“We must look forward to the game and create history. I think this is the first time the Nedbank Cup would have been won by a team in the Limpopo province.”

Stormers coach calls for consistency in applying tackle law

May 7th 2021 at 08:54

Stormers coach John Dobson has asked for more consistency from the officials after the second yellow card handed to his team’s No 8 Willie Engelbrecht – which led to a red card and a dismissal – played a big part in the team’s loss to the Sharks in the Rainbow Cup last weekend.

Dobson said had no issue with the first red card given to wing Seabelo Senatla, who’s subsequently been banned for four weeks.

But the second yellow card handed to Engelbrecht – for a tackle that was deemed to be too high – was this week overturned at a hearing, which meant Engelbrecht should never have received a red card, and been asked to leave the field.

With Senatla gone and Engelbrecht also binned, the Stormers conceded 21 points.

ALSO READ: Dobson forced to make several changes for Bulls battle

“I don’t feel aggrieved about it, but it’s a pity,” said Dobson. “We have to look at shoulders and heads and I’m not saying the officials were wrong, but it had no effect on the receiving players.

“We all want a safe game, we also want some consistency,” he said.

“Similar clips we have seen since Saturday were not considered to be transgressions, so it’s a changing world. But if that’s the norm, we have to adapt as quickly as possible.”

The Stormers, who have multiple players out with injuries, face the Bulls in round two of the Rainbow Cup in Cape Town on Saturday. Engelbrecht, because hiss hearing’s outcome was only known on Thursday, will start on the bench, having not trained fully with the team this week.

Suspended Magashule likely to attend ANC NEC meeting this weekend

May 7th 2021 at 08:51

When is a suspension a suspension? The answer to this is as clear as mud as far as the ANC’s suspended secretary-general, Ace Magashule, is concerned.

The ANC has seemingly confirmed that Magashule will attend this weekend’s special national executive committee (NEC) meeting. This is despite his suspension letter written on Monday and leaked on Wednesday, clearly indicating he would not be allowed to participate in any party duties while he is suspended.

ANC national spokesperson Pule Mabe said all officials who are expected to attend the meeting will be participating. He would not confirm whether Magashule would be among the attendees, but his refusal to verify that Magashule would not, seemed to indicate the SG might still have a role to play.

At the top of the agenda will be the implementation of the step aside resolution adopted at the ANC’s 2017 national conference.

Magashule this week defied the ANC national working committee’s (NWC’s) decision to suspend him after he failed to voluntarily step down from his post within his 30-day grace period.

This has created confusion about Magashule’s suspension.

His suspension means he may not carry out any of his duties as secretary-general, represent the organisation publicly, or make any public pronouncements. He is also prohibited from mobilising any ANC structures on matters both related or unrelated to his stepping aside.

Mabe refused to be drawn into questions about whether Magashule was still carrying out his duties as secretary-general.

He was asked if Magashule had been coming to the office but did not answer.

Speaking out on Thursday morning, a defiant Magashule said he remained in his post until his appeal challenging his suspension had been heard.

ALSO READ: ‘I’m still the secretary-general’ – defiant Magashule sticks to his guns

“Nothing is going on with me, I’m still the secretary-general,” he told EWN in an interview.

Magashule, who is facing fraud and corruption charges in the Free State, confirmed his letter to Ramaphosa was legitimate and said it was Ramaphosa, in fact, who had been suspended.

This has been disputed by several senior leaders of the ANC who said he did not have the authority.

Magashule also claimed his opponents were using state organs against him and his allies in the ANC.

Mabe said Magashule remained a member of the ANC and should there be any developments the nation would be informed.

 

Government workers sitting comfy, vulnerable survive on less than R5000 a month

May 7th 2021 at 08:48

Most financially vulnerable consumers earn less than R5,000 a month, are younger than 39 and are women or single, while people who work for the government are the least financially vulnerable, according to the latest Momentum-Unisa Consumer Financial Vulnerability Index (CFVI) for the first quarter of 2021.

While the index found that financial vulnerability was prevalent in all income groups:

  • 63.4% of respondents perceived consumers who earn less than R5,000 per month as most financially vulnerable
  • 13.8% regarded consumers who earn between R5,000 and R10,000 as financially vulnerable
  • 9.9% regarded consumers who earn between R10,000 and R30,000 as financially vulnerable
  • 6.9% regarded consumers who earn between R30,000 and R50,000 as financially vulnerable
  • 5.9% regarded consumers who earn more than R50,000 as financially vulnerable.

ALSO READ: Food price increases starving the poor

They also regarded the following groups as most vulnerable:

  • 67.3% indicated people younger than 39 as the most financially vulnerable
  • 66% perceived women as more financially vulnerable than men
  • 57% deemed individuals who are single, separated, divorced or widowed as more financially vulnerable compared to people who are married or living with a partner.

Expectations for consumer finances

While 31.7% of the respondents expect that the financial position of consumers will improve in the second quarter of 2021, 80.2% expect that it will take 18 months or longer for consumer finances to recover.

They also noted a significant drop over the past year in the level of control that consumers have over their lives and circumstances. This contributed to consumers adjusting their financial behaviour, searching for additional income generating opportunities and empowering themselves with appropriate skills.

The respondents are researchers, bankers, insurers, retailers, government officials, economists and analysts who deal with consumers daily.

 ALSO READ: Who is helping the forgotten middle class during the lockdowns?

Mpianzi family reach settlement with GP education department

May 7th 2021 at 08:42

The family of Enock Mpianzi, a 13-year-old boy who died while attending a grade 8 orientation camp last year has reached a settlement with the Gauteng department of education.

The family’s lawyer, Wikus Steyl, confirmed the news on Friday.

“I can confirm we have reached a settlement with the department of education which hopefully will help the family find closure,” Steyl said.

He said a civil claim was withdrawn after the settlement was reached.

Although he could not confirm how much the settlement was for, Steyl said that it was an amount that may help the family in a long run.

“The next step now is to ensure the family gets justice and that those responsible are held accountable.”

The family initially sued the department for R20 million. The department’s initial settlement offer was R10 million, which the family refused in December.

Mpianzi’s death sent waves of outrage across the country earlier last year when he drowned at the Nyati Bush and River Break in the North West on the first day of school at a Grade 8 school camp.

ALSO READ: Enock Mpianzi’s parents sue for R20m

Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi last year told the media the family was made an R10 million settlement offer, which they rejected and issued a summons for R20m.

“Unfortunately, we disagreed and the family still insists that the department give them R20m as the settlement. This amount is way beyond what the department is in a position to afford,” Lesufi said at the time.

Lesufi has since welcomed the settlement reached and said that he hoped it would bring comfort to the family.

“While conscious to the fact that a young life was lost and will never return; we are hopeful that the out-of-court settlement will bring some comfort and closure to the Mpianzi family, who, undoubtedly, have been going through a challenging time since the unfortunate passing of Enoch,” Lesufi said.

2021 Durban July a rapidly changing landscape

May 7th 2021 at 08:21

Plenty has been happening on the 2021 Vodacom Durban July front, with a couple of highly fancied entrants scratched, adjustments to the merit ratings and plenty of shuffling on the ante-post betting boards. 

Ace trainer Mike de Kock appears unlikely to have a runner in the country’s top race this year after he withdrew his two entries, Malmoos and Barahin, following their unplaced finishes in the Premier’s Champions Challenge at Turffontein.

Boom horse Malmoos started as the 5-4 favourite for the Grade 1 race but could manage no better than fifth, 6.50 lengths behind winner Got The Greenlight. Barahin was a bad last.

Joe Soma’s Got The Greenlight, 2020 July runner-up, has been elevated to 5-1 favourite for this year’s renewal following his sparkling performance in the Challenge. Early July favourites Belgarion, Rainbow Bridge, Kommetdieding and Summer Pudding have all eased.

Another heavily fancied July entry, filly Captain’s Ransom, has also been withdrawn from the big event on 3 July. Despite her facile win in the Grade 2 WSB Fillies Guineas at Greyville at the weekend, trainer Justin Snaith announced he and owner Suzette Viljoen had opted to go for the exclusively female Garden Province Stakes on July day instead.

This leaves Snaith with 10 of the remaining 50 July entries. Among these are last year’s July winner Belgarion and two-time July champ Do It Again, who will open their Champions Season campaigns on 16 May in Greyville’s WSB 1900 – one of the traditional Durban July preps. Belgarion has slipped to 12-1 after topping the boards a few weeks ago, while Do It Again can be had at 16-1. 

Got The Greenlight had his merit rating hiked from 124 to 128 after blitzing both Malmoos and Triple Tiara heroine Summer Pudding. The latter finished fourth in the Challenge and trainer Paul Peter said her participation in the July would be discussed with owner Jessica Jell. 

Peter did confirm a July bid with the three-year-old filly Netta, a runaway winner of the 2000m Gerald Rosenberg Stakes on Champions Day. Netta’s MR rocketed up from 102 to 120 after she scooted in by six lengths at 7-1 and consigned hot favourite Running Brave (another July hopeful) to fourth place.

On the Guineas day card at Greyville, Cape Met hero Rainbow Bridge could hardly have been more impressive in winning the 1400m Drill Hall Stakes. However, the handicappers kept his MR at 134, using complicated reasoning that involved third-placed Ultra Magnus running to his full potential and therefore qualifying as the handicap “line horse”. 

A July candidate that did get a MR bump in Durban was Linebacker, who comfortably won the 1600m WSB Guineas. He went from 115 to 124, while third-placed Kommetdieding went from 117 to 120.

The way all this played out in the betting rooms was Linebacker leaping to 6-1 second favouritism in the July, with Kommetdieding slipping to 7-1.

Vodacom Durban July betting:

5-1 Got The Greenlight

6-1 Linebacker

7-1 Kommetdieding

15-2 Rainbow Bridge

12-1 Belgarion, War Of Athena

14-1 The Gatekeeper

16-1 Do It Again, Summer Pudding

20-1 Second Base, Golden Ducat

33-1 Russian Rock, Rascallion, Princess Calla

40-1 and upwards the others

Zulu royal family to meet at 5pm for reading of queen’s will

May 7th 2021 at 08:11

AmaZulu traditional prime minister prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi has announced that the Zulu royal family will be meeting later on Friday afternoon to listen to the reading of queen regent Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu’s will.

WATCH: Prince disrupts prayer service at Zulu queen’s funeral

Speaking at a special memorial service in honour of the monarch at KwaKhangelamankengane Palace in Nongoma, Buthelezi said the royal family would meet at 5pm.

Mantfombi passed away last week at Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg at the age of 65. She was laid to rest at a private burial on Thursday.

The reading of the queen’s will happens amid divisions within the royal family over how the succession battle should be handled. The late king Goodwill Zwelithini’s first wife is heading to court to interdict the coronation of a new ruler of the AmaZulu nation.

Queen Sibongile Dlamini is challenging the king’s will in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on the basis that they were married under civil law, which prohibits polygamous marriages.

Queen Mantfombi was appointed regent of the Zulu nation in March, following the death of Zwelithini.

Her first son, prince Misuzulu Zulu, is widely speculated to be the one who will ascend the throne.

‘She spoke with love, listened with patience’

Earlier, Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma paid tribute to Mantfombi , describing her as a monarch who cared for the downtrodden despite the elevated position she occupied.

Dlamini Zuma said Mantfombi was a unifier of the Zulu nation and eSwatini. The queen was the daughter of the late king Sobuza and sister of king Mswati III of eSwatini.

“We have drunk from the cup of her wisdom, which she exercised with humility. We had seen her direct the young women towards tradition, education and service to the community through initiatives such as uMkhosi Womhlanga (Reed Dance) and many others.

“We have seen her protect our young, fighting for the safety of women against gender-based violence and substance abuse just as a mother hen would do,” Dlamini Zuma said.

“She was very kind. she spoke with love, listened with patience and acted with compassion.”

The minister said the government had been looking forward to working with the queen as the regent until an official successor was named.

She said Mantfombi was going to be a very capable regent who put the interests of the people first.

“We were certain that our ancestors and the universe had favoured us with the right calibre and temperament of a leader, who would not only hold forth but advance amaZulu and our nation to greater and more caring heights.

“For us, she was the centrepiece by which we would reconstruct and reconfigure the traditional systems of commerce, governance and diplomacy, so that we can build resilient, sustainable and prosperous communities that participate on an equal footing with all other nations of the continent and the world.”

ALSO READ: What you need to know about the late Zulu Queen Mantfombi

4500 beds available in Gauteng hospitals for Covid-19 wave

May 7th 2021 at 08:10

The Gauteng government has made 4,564 bed spaces available for Covid-19 patients amid concerns about rising infections.

This comes after Gauteng Premier David Makhura said the province was in the early phases of a third wave.

The premier, however, said the province was prepared and the focus had fallen on flattening the infection curve.

“We have also added additional staff – 4,000 professionals – to the staff complement of the department of health,” he said on Thursday.

While giving an update on Covid-19 in Gauteng, alongside the provincial command council (PCC) on Friday afternoon, Makhura noted that the increase in the number cases was a matter for concern.

#COVID19 | The Gauteng Provincial Command Council gives an update on COVID-19 https://t.co/ayyFLRYnKs

— GautengGov (@GautengProvince) May 7, 2021

Earlier during the briefing Premier advisory council (PAC) chairperson Dr Mary Kawonga said all Gauteng districts had seen an increase in cases in the past week, with the highest increases recorded in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Sedibeng.

Kawonga said Emfuleni was the most concerning sub-district.

“The number of cases from Monday this week have doubled from last week. This a worrying trend. There has been a sustained increase particularly in Emfuleni. Emfuleni is approaching a third wave threshold after consistently recording the highest daily cases every day for the past three weeks,” she said.

ALSO READ: Where is the Covid-19 third wave? Well, it’s probably closer than you think

Dr Kawonga agreed with projections by the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) that the third wave was unlikely to be more severe than the preceding waves.

According to the NICD, Gauteng is expected to be the hardest-hit province, since it is home to more than a quarter of South Africa’s population.

Hospital Beds

Commenting on the first and second waves, Makhura said he believed the lessons learned from them would help authorities to better prepare for the third wave, adding that more than 4,000 hospital beds were available.

“When Covid-19 first hit, the province had 1,193 beds, we now have 4,564 available beds. With regards to human resources, we are better prepared than we were in May 2020. The availability of oxygen is also a key priority.

“Our response to Covid-19 is not only to deal with the current pandemic, but our interventions will last for the next 20 years or more. We have put in place permanent structures,” he said.

READ MORE: If government says don’t panic about Covid-19 – please do

However during the peak of the third wave, the province is going to need 2,400 critical beds and 7,500 general beds to meet the demand, according to department of health head of infrastructure Dr Sifiso Maseko.

Maseko said the province was currently utilising 3,261 functional beds for admissions and 803 beds for quarantine and isolation, including 150 beds at newly opened Bronkhorstspruit Hospital yesterday.

Additional capacity amounting to 500 beds has been completed and equipped with health technology at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital for future use.

Charlotte Maxeke Hospital fire

It was also revealed that the fire at the Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital in Johannesburg affected 311 beds.

The hospital will be opened in a phased approach, which will see the oncology, obstetrics and gynaecology wards opened first, with the fire inspection having been completed.

Air quality results will be released in due time, Maseko said.

Plan to restore services at Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital. Source: Gauteng Province

Vaccinations

Makhura said there appears to be resistance vaccinations as a result of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine being temporarily suspended, adding that only 200,000 out of 1,3 million people had registered under phase 2 of the vaccination programme.

He noted that the vaccination drive would also have to be informed by the case numbers.

“We know vaccination is important but we will only get a limited number of doses so we will have to use a combination of strategies,” he said.

More than 10 000 Community healthcare workers, Community Development Workers & Social Workers will help register all those who do not have access to the internet or smart devices. They will also help those who are unable to leave home & arrange for them to be vaccinated at home.

— GautengGov (@GautengProvince) May 7, 2021

The premier also warned against complacency, especially from the youth attending potential super-spreader events.

“We are appealing to the people of Gauteng to continue to follow all non-pharmaceutical interventions. We have won the battle of the second wave, we can lessen the severity of the third wave by not allowing fatigue to take over,” he said.

Consumers becoming less financially vulnerable – survey

May 7th 2021 at 07:31

Consumers are becoming less financially vulnerable, according to a survey of the first quarter of the year, as their personal finances improved thanks to a recovery in the income of especially middle and higher income groups.

However, the majority are still more concerned about their finances than their health during the pandemic, with the majority of 30.7% of respondents believing consumers are more focused on their finances than on staying safe from Covid-19 and 26.7% saying that consumers still value their finances, but attach a high value to staying safe.

ALSO READ: Consumer spend drops massively during lockdown – index

The Momentum-Unisa Consumer Financial Vulnerability Index (CFVI) for the second quarter of 2020, when the lockdown started, was 35.4 points. In the first quarter of 2021, the CFVI improved to 49.7 points from 47.5 points in Q4 2020. The respondents are researchers, bankers, insurers, retailers, government officials, economists and analysts who deal with consumers daily.

Graphic of consumer financial vulnerability

The good news is that consumer expenditure, savings and debt servicing also improved and were actually higher than in the fourth quarter of 2019, except for savings:

  • The income index increased from 47.7 points in the fourth quarter of 2020 to 50.2
  • The expenditure index improved from 49.2 points in the fourth quarter to 52.3
  • The savings index increased from 1.5 points in the fourth quarter to 48.8 points
  • The debt servicing index rose from 45.8 points in the fourth quarter to 47.5 points.

This was a good start to the year, but South African consumers are not out of the woods yet, with the majority of consumers still feeling financially exposed and insecure. This means that any small adverse event, such as a pay cut, can contribute to a large deterioration in the state of their personal finances.

Measurement scale

  • The measurement scale of the index rates between 80 and 100 points as extremely secure and between 60 and 79.9 as very secure, with points above 60 regarded as having a cash flow position that is under control with little threat of becoming financially vulnerable.
  • Between 50 and 59.9 points is rated as mildly exposed and between 40 and 49.9 points as very exposed, with consumers whose cash flow has been affected so much that it creates a high risk of becoming financially vulnerable or insecure if they score between 40 and 59.9 points.
  • Consumers with a score of between 20 and 39.9 points are regarded as very vulnerable and those scoring below 19.9 points extremely vulnerable, with their cash flow affected to such an extent that it creates an actual experience or sense of being financially insecure and unable to cope.

ALSO READ: Consumers spend R6 of every R10 paying debts – just like the government

 Why consumers are becoming less financially vulnerable

  • The fact that income vulnerability decreased suggests that more consumers were able to earn or increase their income. Consumers now had a greater chance to retain or find employment and they had better income earning prospects.
  • Consumers’ expenditure vulnerability is supported by the recovery in employment as well as their ability to not exceed their incomes and remain within their budgets.
  • The decrease in their savings vulnerability can be attributed to the recovery in income as well as the fact that and more consumers are living within their means, but they still did not have greater access to emergency savings.
  • Consumers were less vulnerable in terms of debt servicing capabilities because low interest rates helped to limit debt servicing costs.

The main interventions or changes needed for consumers to recover financially are:

  • improvement in the local economy to stimulate job creation
  • financial discipline by limiting unnecessary expenses and saving more
  • financial planning, including setting attainable financial goals
  • increased financial literacy
  • additional income or starting their own businesses
  • limiting credit uptake and repaying existing debts.

The respondents noted that while South African consumers are resilient and some have started to adapt, they will require external support in the form of job creation and skills development, especially in poorer communities, to recover financially.

WATCH: This car guard video by Themba Robin will make your Friday

May 7th 2021 at 07:23

South African voice over artist and actor Themba Robin has created a funny skit that sheds light on the awkward encounters South Africans have with car guards.

You may have seen Themba Robin in a few skits last year during the big Covid-19 lockdown as part of his lockdown series, Lockdown is Lekker.

The comedian has recently released another hilarious skit that shows the awkward yet funny encounters most South Africans have with car guards when they are heading to their cars to leave a parking lot.

In the video, Themba has just left what seems to be a mall or shopping centre and is carrying a shopping bag from Woolworths.

Just before heading to the parking lot, Themba opens his wallet to check if he has any money for the car guard but realises he has none.

Themba attempts to walk from the shopping centre to his car  without being seen by the car guard, played by Matthew Berry.

Themba ducks and dives behind a row of cars, while the car guard is facing a different direction, counting some coins he has received from other drivers.

Just as Themba is about to reach his car, he pulls out his car keys and clicks the button to unlock the car. Unfortunately for him, the car guard hears the car unlock and runs to the car.

Themba tries by all means to rush to his car and get in without having to engage with the car guard, or having to disappoint the car guard by telling him he has no money. All fails as he is trying to reverse his car and looks in the rear view mirror to find the car guard standing directly behind him, ready to assist Themba with reversing.

Then there’s a nice punchline which we won’t spoil for you.

The humorous skit ends off with a very important message: “Pay your parking lot executives, it’s the right thing to do.”

Gavin Hunt rumoured to be considering his options at Kaizer Chiefs

May 7th 2021 at 07:17

Gavin Hunt’s tenure at Kaizer Chiefs has been a tremulous with results not going the way they’d have been expected.

ALSO READ: Gavin Hunt not getting his way with signing of players at Kaizer Chiefs?

This has resulted in some tensions within the club, Phakaaathi has learnt.

A source says there are a number of issues that the club and Hunt are not seeing eye-to-eye on regarding the rebuilding of the team and the players to be brought in or released.

“You must remember that Hunt is used to do things his own way like he has been in the past 10 or so years at SuperSport (United) and (Bidvest) Wits. Now at Chiefs he has a big team making decisions on matters like who is signed and all of that. It’s not easy.

“They have some disagreements and in some they find common ground, but in some they can’t and it’s making things very difficult. I wouldn’t be surprised if they decided to go separate ways at the end of the season,” said the source.

The source also revealed that Stellenbosch FC, who had reportedly also been interested in Hunt before he joined Chiefs, are watching the situation in anticipation.

Meanwhile, as reported earlier, Chiefs management have put their foot down and refused some of the signings coach Gavin Hunt has recommended, Phakaaathi has heard.

ALSO READ: Kaizer Chiefs boss Motaung not too keen on Gamildien?

Amakhosi have been having meetings in recent weeks as preparations for the new season where they will be allowed to bring in new players are now in full swing.

It is understood that Hunt had given management a list of players he wants but the club are not too sure about some.

Why you can never just eat one potato chip (and why that’s an issue)

May 7th 2021 at 07:06

A recently published investigation by a former New York Times reporter has dissected the techniques of the food giants. The use of sophisticated addictive mechanisms forces us to keep on taking chip after chip out of the bag.

You come home on a weeknight, tired and weary. Mechanically, you grab a bag of chips and open it, promising yourself, as usual, to eat just a handful. A few minutes later, you’ve eaten the whole bag. The buttery flavor, combined with the salt, sugar and perfect crunchiness, has got you hooked. Don’t worry, you’re not lacking in willpower, you’re just a victim of a very elaborate scheme by the food industry.

In his latest book “Hooked: Food, Free Will, and How The Food Giants Exploit our Addictions,” journalist Michael Moss explores the mechanisms the industry uses to manipulate low-end, but seductive, foods to make us consume more. Our irrepressible attraction to sugar and fat is not new. It has long been known that they activate the reward and addiction circuit.

This is due to our neurons, which have been conditioned for thousands of years to store these foods in case of a shortage. The novelty lies in the careful manipulation of our most primal instincts to push us to consume more food and make us addicted. Like the introduction of countless combinations of flavors and ingredients that are rarely found in nature.

ALSO READ: New study links eating junk food with Crohn’s disease

Doritos addiction

The former New York Times journalist had already made a name for himself in 2013 with the publication of his first book. “Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us” had earned him a Pulitzer, the highest journalistic award in the United States. In it, we learned, for example, that Frito-Lay, manufacturer of Doritos and other well-known chips in the United States, was spending millions of dollars every year on research.

Of which 40,000 is spent on a machine that mimics chewing to find the perfect break point of the chip under the tooth, and make us want to crunch it even more. Research efforts are now focused on tracking down the genes that predispose us to “craving”, the impulse that drives us to consume, like addicts. Obesity in the United States, the author’s nation, affects 4 out of 10 adults. In

France, it affects 17% of adults.

Are food makers the new cigarette companies?

The analogy between food and drugs is far from coincidental. Moss compares the big food companies to the tobacco industry and says that their processes for getting us hooked are similar. And for good reason, in the United States, General Foods and Kraft Foods were food subsidiaries of Philips Morris.

The author borrows from his definition of addiction from the world of tobacco: “a repetitive behavior that some people find difficult to stop.” Like the famous potato chip that leads to another one, then another, etc. The calculation is so well dosed that our brain releases a large amount of dopamine, a molecule associated with pleasure.

This pleasure encourages us to want more. It becomes so powerful that the brain is no longer able to curb our cravings and addiction sets in. And even looking at a bag of chips can be enough to make us salivate.

When questioned about their practices, junk food manufacturers such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Nestlé and Unilever answer that consumers are sufficiently informed and that they are not obliged to consume these products. The same argument, in short, that cigarette companies made in court.

Queen Elizabeth is now selling beer…well sort of

May 7th 2021 at 06:50

The head of the royal family in Britain is steering into an interesting and lucrative business venture.

It was confirmed by the palace on Thursday that Queen Elizabeth II will launch her own beer, well actually her estate.

The two beers are made from organic barley grown on the queen’s country estate, Sandringham, and will be packaged in bottle form (500ml) and priced at £ 3.99 (R80) each. The beers can be purchased from the estate’s gift shop.

The beer is also made “crystal clear water drawn from the nearby borehole”. The beers come in two variations, a 4.3% Best Bitter and a stronger variation, the 5% Golden IPA.

We’re thinking ahead to Fathers Day and what better way to celebrate than with one of our new Sandringham Beers.

Sandringham Estate has developed an IPA and a Bitter from organic Laurette Barley grown on the wider Estate and is available to buy now from the Sandringham Shop. pic.twitter.com/QHn2q3R3n4

— Sandringham (@sandringham1870) May 4, 2021

The Sun reported Sandringham Beers are brewed by Norfolk-based Barsham Brewery. The label on the bottle reads: “The Sandringham Estate is a wildlife haven for pheasants, hares, owls and many other species thrive in the wood and farmland habitats.”

ALSO READ: What?! Queen Elizabeth is far more interesting than Oprah

The Best Bitter has been described as “uniquely natural” and “full-flavoured” while the IPA is said to have a “subtle flavour”.

This is not the first time Buckingham Palace has tapped into the alcohol industry having released a sloe gin just a few days ago, describing it as a fruit gin and sold on the royal collection shop website.
It has flavours of whole sloe berries steeped in the classic Buckingham Palace gin to give this sloe gin a unique and intense fruit flavour.

Compiled by Sandisiwe Mbhele 

For the love of photography and art with Angie Lazaro

May 7th 2021 at 06:48

Like many of us, high school is the end of the road, a fork in the road and the pressure on career choice is bigger than a mouthful of cheeseburger. Photographer and artist Angie Lazaro had to make a choice and didn’t study photography.

Not at first. Instead, on the influence of a friend Lazaro pursued fashion design, followed by a romance with journalism that led her to finally coupling with pictures. And what a ride it has been, evidenced in her vast portfolio of commercial, editorial, and artful images created over a two-and-a-bit decade long career.

“My first camera was a borrowed one,” says Lazaro, but her natural talent for lighting and composition brought her to the realization of her calling, a life behind the lens, in photography.

A master’s degree from Rhodes University later, Lazaro was ready to immortalise moments, emotion and instances. She eventually did buy her own camera and has travelled the world on assignments since. “It has been about people for me, meeting incredible and amazing people has been so rewarding. I will never forget photographing Nelson Mandela on stage, and, while I was still a junior photographer at the time and it is not my best work, but it left an indelible memory. I also had the honour of meeting Madiba backstage just before.”

Lazaro gets equally as excited about photographing a plate of food as she does beautiful interiors, celebrities, and everyday people. “I can never be a wedding photographer though,” she says. “The pressure of time and deliverables means that one cannot be truly creative and spend time with composition. It’s all just a schedule.” A good picture, she says, is sometimes photographing what’s developing right in front of you.

“I will never forget, on assignment in Kenya, there was a young girl in a bright fuchsia pink dress, selling water. And then at one point she moved away from us, walked into the ocean and took a moment to chill in the breeze, with the bottles still on her shoulders she held her hands up at the breeze.

That’s photography. And that, to me, was beautiful. For a brief instance she was free, free from having to sell the water, free from her poverty, free from her life, and just having that time where she just enjoyed something for herself. So, for me, that is capturing a moment in time and while I know that I’m projecting a bit, that is what I think she was feeling. That’s what it meant to me as an observer.”

Memories are not always just about the picture, but the before and after, too. On assignment to interview and photograph a sangoma in Khayelitsha, outside Cape Town, it was the journey leading up to taking the photograph that ingrained itself into her memory.

“We had to follow directions that literally read something like, ‘at the orange pumpkin, turn left. At the stop with the cell phone tower, turn right,’ you get the picture. It was an adventure just to make it to the interview.” Anecdotally Niq Mhlongo, author of bestselling book Black Tax, was their bodyguard. “How incredible to see his career catapult into the stratosphere,” adds Lazaro.

Lazaro’s credentials read like a rollcall of A-list achievements with, at last count, 45 magazine covers to her name and hundreds of advertising campaigns and editorials.

She has photographed Morgan Freeman, Naledi Pandor and Jeannie-D with a rolodex of other celebrities, sports personalities, captains of industry and, sometimes, wannabes in front of her camera. “Photographing Helen Susman was another highlight of my career, to meet, capture and just bask in the proximity of someone who made such a significant impact on the course of our nation’s history.”

There is nothing as intimidating to an artist as a blank canvas or an empty page in photography. But then again, Lazaro seems to have no problem. Her cup runs over with creativity. As an accomplished artist, too, she recently hosted an online exhibition, A Part Apart, on her site when Covid-19 prevented a bricks and mortar showcase.

Here, she takes browsers on a creative journey, shares her emotion freely and opens-up to the audience in a way few artists can commit to doing. “Though my photography and my art, I want to share my world. An experience, engaging with the universe from a particular point of arrival or departure. Isn’t that the purpose of art – to embrace, to talk, discourse and to feel something,”

 

Zola 7 about Unathi: ‘the chemistry was nice but we never dated’

May 7th 2021 at 06:41

Zola 7’s (Bonginkosi Dlamini) highly anticipated interview on Podcast and Chill with MacG was streamed on YouTube on Thursday.

Fans were treated to a nearly a two-hour long discussion. The trending topic was his relationship with fellow musician Unathi Nkayi. Zola featured Unathi in his song Sana Iwani, 19 years ago. Their chemistry in the music video was undeniable and is still highly talked about to this day.

However, Unathi did admit in 2020 that the two never dated. She explained: “People don’t understand how we never date. He had a crush on me and I him BUT we were both too shy to do anything. (Well even today I am unable to make the first move and hit on a guy but I digress) I guess that’s what speaks to our chemistry in the song and the video.”

Fans are still pressing this matter, Zola 7 denied too.

ALSO READ‘Bonginkosi’ a hit among Cassper Nyovest and Zola 7’s fans

“I’ve never dated Unathi. I’ve been hearing stories about that. We’ve never dated but the chemistry was nice. What had happened was that I was actually driving. I think it was from Soweto. Then Unathi was on the radio way before Thomas. And then she sang and she hit her note and then I got into the studio and told Lance you better find me this girl. There’s something I heard. She was like the African version of Lauren Hill.”

Zola 7 is a very good storyteller ❤️

VIP s/o to Unathi.

This is The Podcast and Chill with MacG pic.twitter.com/HV9vQ644tl

— YaseB ???????? (@ThisIsColbert) May 6, 2021


Zola also opened up about being diagnosed with epilepsy three years ago and relying on heavy medication. How his condition has resulted in him losing a lot of weight.

“I lost a lot of weight over the past year. I was extremely sick, I was home and I was shaking. Everybody around me was scared I was going to die. I couldn’t eat well. I was eating mageu, porridge and fish.”

In the interview he also touched on copyright right issues, the lost of his personal assistant, his sour relationship with record label Ghetto Ruff and supporting black businesses.

Watch:

Bok boss Nienaber: ‘Phenomenal’ that Lions are on their way

May 7th 2021 at 06:27

Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber has reacted to the naming of the British and Irish Lions squad for the three-Test series against his team by saying “a marker has been laid in the ground in terms of international rugby returning to South Africa.”

Nienaber called the news that the Lions will be on these shores in less than two months’ time “phenomenal for us, because we’ve been out of it for a while.”

Lions coach Warren Gatland named his 37-man squad on Thursday with Wales great Alun Wyn Jones as team leader.

ALSO READ: Alun Wyn Jones to lead 2021 Lions in SA

The Lions will play eight matches, including three Tests against the World Cup winners, in South Africa from the beginning of July to early August.

Nienaber is expected to name his Bok squad for the series early next month.

“The announcement of the Lions squad was a marker in the ground in terms of international rugby coming back to South Africa, which is phenomenal for us, because we’ve been out of it for a while,” Nienaber told the Springbok rugby website on Friday.

ALSO READ: Meet Lions tourist Duhan van der Merwe

The Bok coach said Gatland’s long stint as successful Wales coach would make him a tough opponent.

“One thing I know about Warren is that he will do his homework,” said Nienaber, who took over from Rassie Erasmus as Bok coach after the World Cup, but he has yet to prepare a team for a match because of the coronavirus’ impact on world sport.

“If you look into the past the Welsh have always been a team we have struggled against. We had one win against them since the 2015 Rugby World Cup quarter-final, which was the 2019 Rugby World Cup semi-final in 2019.”

ALSO READ: Lions boss Gatland on leaving Sexton out, and facing the Boks

Under Gatland the Lions won the series against Australia in 2013 and drew with New Zealand in 2017.

With regards the form of the South African players in action in the Rainbow Cup, Nienaber said he’d definitely seen a step up in intensity.

“The pleasing thing for me was to see how the players are working on and improving on the things we spoke about during the alignment camps.

“We have less than 80 days before we play the Lions and the players and coaches have to utilise every second of that time to make sure we are well prepared for the series.

“The Lions is a special occasion that might come only once during a career, and I know there are certain players who have postponed their retirement because of this tour, so I think all the stars are aligned for a great series.”

ANC NEC in ‘do or die’ meeting over step aside resolution

May 7th 2021 at 06:22

Following a dramatic week that saw embattled ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule suspended as well as his counter-suspension of ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa, the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) will meet this weekend.

Sparks are expected to fly as the 80-member structure meets virtually via Zoom.

ALSO READ: Does the ANC have the backbone to serve Ace the Malema treatment?

At the top of the agenda will be the implementation of the step aside resolution adopted at the ANC’s 2017 national conference.

The resolution requires all ANC members charged with corruption and other serious crimes to step down from their positions pending the finalisation of their court cases.

So far, ANC KwaZulu-Natal deputy chairperson Mike Mabuyakhulu and the mayor of JB Marks Municipality in the North West, Kgotso Khumalo, have voluntarily stepped down from their posts due to their ongoing criminal charges.

However, Magashule remains defiant that he is still the party’s secretary-general and said he would appeal his “factional and unconstitutional” suspension. He faces multiple charges of fraud and corruption in connection with a multimillion-rand asbestos audit contract in the Free State.

Under the terms of his suspension, Magashule has been barred from representing the ANC or mobilising any of its structures, but he will be entitled to his full salary.

Many political pundits will be closely watching the response of Magashule’s allies and his radical economic transformation (RET) faction.

Ramaphosa ‘suspension’ to be discussed

Magashule sent shockwaves after he ordered Ramaphosa to step down as ANC leader because of allegations of vote buying during his 2017 ANC presidential campaign, known as CR17.

Magashule confirmed his letter was indeed legitimate and it was Ramaphosa, in fact, who had been suspended by the NEC.

Ramaphosa reportedly told the ANC’s parliamentary caucus on Thursday he had received Magashule’s letter with “shock and a measure of dismay”.

While numerous senior ANC leaders have disputed Magashule’s authority to suspend Ramaphosa, the president apparently wants the special NEC meeting to deal with this.

The structure that implements the decisions of the NEC, the national working committee (NWC), indicated that the NEC will discuss the various reports of the integrity commission, which makes findings on members accused of bringing the ANC into disrepute.

The NEC will also discuss proposals for the establishment of an appeals panel to hear the appeals of ANC members affected by the step aside resolution and the decisions of the integrity commission.

READ NEXT: ‘I’m still the secretary-general’ – defiant Magashule sticks to his guns

WATCH: Prince disrupts prayer service at Zulu queen’s funeral

May 7th 2021 at 06:14

The eldest son of the late regent of the Zulu nation, prince Misuzulu Zulu, made his first public appearance since the death of his mother Mantfombi Shiyiwe Zulu last week and disrupted memorial proceedings.

UPDATE: Prince Misuzulu Zulu named in queen’s will as new king

The prince was accompanied by Zulu regiments marching into the marquee where the official memorial of the queen was taking place with prayer in session.

The regiments and the prince continued singing until Zulu Prime Minister Mangosuthu Buthelezi was forced to come out of the marquee to discipline them.

[WATCH] Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi warns Prince Misuzulu Zulu, and Amabutho to not march into the marquee where the official memorial of #QueenMantfombiDlaminiZulu is taking place as prayer is in session.

Tune into #Newzroom405 for more. pic.twitter.com/8JOEl0vXP7

— Newzroom Afrika (@Newzroom405) May 7, 2021

“Ndabezitha, Mageba, please desist from this chaos, we are in the middle of a prayer session,” Buthelezi said.

They quietened down and the prince made his way into the marquee. It is expected that Misusulu will be appointed the new Zulu king.

ALSO READ: Zulu royal family to meet at 5pm for reading of queen’s will

He is the eldest son of the late regent Queen who was tasked with appointing a new ruler after the death of king Goodwill Zwelithini.

There are however ongoing battles amid the issue of succession.

The royal family confirmed earlier this week that the fight over who should succeed king Goodwill had headed to the high court in Pietermaritzburg.

The king’s first wife, MaDlamini, whom he married in community of property, has challenged his will, which names the next king.

ALSO READ: Zulu royal family rocked by claims king’s will may have been forged – reports

Dobson forced to make several changes for Bulls battle

May 7th 2021 at 06:14

The Stormers have been forced to make a number of changes for the PRO14 Rainbow Cup SA encounter with the Bulls at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.

The North-South clash will kick-off at 6.15pm.

Hooker Bongi Mbonambi starts in the only change to the front row, while David Meihuizen is at lock in place of JD Schickerling who injured his ankle against the Sharks last week.

Flank Nama Xaba also picked up an ankle injury at training this week and has been replaced by Marcel Theunissen, with Evan Roos at No 8 and Willie Engelbrecht among the replacements this week.

ALSO READ: ‘Vermeulen won’t be at his best, but he’ll make an impact’

Scrumhalf Herschel Jantjies has not recovered from a quad contusion in time, so Godlen Masimla will link up at halfback with Abner van Reenen, who is in for Kade Wolhuter after the young flyhalf ruptured knee ligaments (ACL) last week.

Dan du Plessis starts at outside centre, with Ruhan Nel having joined the Springbok Sevens team and Leolin Zas and Sergeal Petersen start on the wings, with Seabelo Senatla suspended.

ALSO READ: Stormers’ Senatla cops four-week ban for dangerous play

Coach John Dobson said that despite the forced changes, there is a lot to look forward to from a talented side this weekend.

“Many of the players coming in impressed in the preparation matches and will relish the opportunity to prove themselves in a big game such as this,” said Dobson.

“We are excited to see what the new combinations can offer alongside the senior players who make up the core of this team,” he said.

Stormers: Damian Willemse, Sergeal Petersen, Dan du Plessis, Rikus Pretorius, Leolin Zas, Abner van Reenen, Godlen Masimla, Evan Roos, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Marcel Theunissen, Marvin Orie, David Meihuizen, Frans Malherbe, Bongi Mbonambi, Steven Kitshoff (capt). Bench (from): Scarra Ntubeni, Leon Lyons, Neethling Fouche, Ernst van Rhyn, Willie Engelbrecht, Paul de Wet, Cornel Smit, Edwill van der Merwe, Andre-Hugo Venter, Adre Smith.

R102 million of crumbling Robben Island museum’s infrastructure grant unspent

May 7th 2021 at 06:09

According to the annual reports of the Robben Island Museum, R102.6 million of an infrastructure grant from the Department of Sports, Arts, and Culture (DSAC), remained unspent by the end of March 2020.

The Robben Island Museum (RIM) receives the grant for the maintenance of infrastructure on the island. However, as custodian of the infrastructure on the island, the Department of Public Works implements the maintenance projects funded by the infrastructure grant.

ALSO READ: Does the ANC have the backbone to serve Ace the Malema treatment?

Prior to October 2020, all the maintenance funded by the grant was conducted by Public Works. But according to Mava Dada, museum CEO, the Deputy Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture Vusumzi Mkhize noticed that the infrastructure on the island was falling into disrepair during a visit to the island in 2020.

Mkhize then supported negotiations with Public Works to allow RIM to use the grant for its own maintenance projects that don’t exceed R500,000. This new arrangement has been in effect since October 2020.

Dada was speaking during the museum’s executive committee presentation to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Sports, Arts, and Culture, on Wednesday. During the presentation, Dada insisted that there is no mismanagement on the island and that “the island is not decaying”.

“Our hands are tied when it comes to maintenance on the island,” Dada told the committee members. “We need to be authorized by both departments in order to do any work.”

The museum executive committee emphasised the end of the Public Works contract with Coega Development Corporation, which was implementing the maintenance projects, as the main reason for the island’s maintenance problems.

But the spending problems started even when Coega was involved. In the financial statements for 2017/18, it is reported that R50.7 million of the infrastructure grant remained unspent, and a footnote mentions Coega as the Department of Public Works implementing agent for the “majority of infrastructure projects”. R38m of the R50.7m balance relates to Coega projects, the statement reads.

The unspent infrastructure grant amount for 2018/19 was R74 million. It was R85 million in 2019/20. The unspent amount for 2020 is bigger than the allocation itself and includes money rolled over from the previous year.

After a recent visit to the Island by the Ex-Political Prisoners Association (EPPA), a vocal critic of the Robben Island Museum, more evidence of poorly maintained buildings came to light. According to the museum, severe damage to the buildings on the island was caused by a storm in October 2020.

But two photographs, received by GroundUp from an employee on the island and taken on 3 October 2020 and 16 April 2021 respectively, show how a building with a damaged roof had not been repaired since the storm.

An island employee told GroundUp that many of the empty buildings on the island have been invaded by birds.

In 2019, a repainting project was launched focussed only on the buildings along the main bus tour routes and residents were relocated.

The Blue Stone Quarry has also recently been highlighted by the EPPA. The site where Nelson Mandela and his fellow inmates conducted hard labour as part of their punishment, is prone to flooding and is not being sufficiently maintained, the EPPA says. In the middle of the quarry stands a stone pile, started by Mandela and fellow ex-political prisoners when they revisited the island in 1995. Upgrades to the quarry have been planned since 2012.

Another concern for residents on the island is the ongoing maintenance of M/V Sikhululekile, a vessel which has been out of operation since 2017. In the 2019/20 financial year the museum spent R38.5 million on hired boats, while still spending money on maintaining Sikhululekile, which is still unoperational.

An island employee says that residents with school-going children have had to look for alternative accommodation on the mainland since the museum decided that it could no longer provide residents with a boat. This may also cause problems in the case of medical emergencies.

A report commissioned in 2018 by Minister Nathi Mthethwa, which found evidence of mismanagement at the Robben Island Museum, is currently being reviewed by the museum’s management and disciplinary processes are underway. The EPPA and the Democratic Alliance (DA) have called for the report to be made public.

The museum declined to respond to questions and instead referred us to the 5 May presentation before the portfolio committee. The Department of Public Works received and acknowledged our enquiry, but has not responded. Arts and Culture also did not answer our questions.

This story first appeared on Moneyweb and has been republished with permission.

Could Sundowns get Pitso Mosimane fired at Al Ahly?

May 7th 2021 at 06:07

If you’re looking for a trigger happy football boss in South Africa you look no further than Siviwe “Chippa” Mpengesi – the chairman of Chippa United – who does not hesitate to sack coaches when the results are not satisfying.

ALSO READ:  Pitso Mosimane asks Al Ahly to table an offer for Sundowns’ Peter Shalulile

In Egypt, Al Ahly president Mahmoud “Bibo” El Khatib operates in the same manner as a string of three bad results could lead to dismissal.

Current Al Ahly head coach, Pitso Mosimane, has been under the spotlight of criticism of late as his side are going through a bit of a slump in the Egyptian League where they find themselves at second place behind arch rivals Zamalek, having collected 40 points in 18 games.

The Red Devils play against Mosimane’s former side, Mamelodi Sundowns, in the Caf Champions League quarterfinal and that could well be his final match in charge of the defending champions if he loses over two legs to his former employers.

The Champions League, is a competition that Ahly pride themselves on, as they usually cruise in the domestic league where they have won it in the last five seasons. Mosimane is under a lot of pressure to successfully defend the Champions League.

If Sundowns beat Al Ahly over the two-legged affair, there is no reason to not believe that he could lose his job, and how ironic would it be for him if the side which he abandoned last September, becomes the team responsible for his demise.

Mosimane delivered the first Champions League crown to the Cairo-based side in seven years and that being the first under the presidency of “Bibo”, but getting eliminated at this stage will irk the powers that be as part of his mandate is to win the Champions League.

Even though “Jingles” did lead the side to a domestic treble in his first couple of games, a lot of criticism has been levelled at the former Bafana Bafana coach, with some legends of the club questioning his abilities while some have lambasted him for riding on his predecessor, Rene Weiler’s hard work as “Jingles” arrived to find the side already in the semifinals of the Champions League and the league had long been wrapped up.

Moustafa Younes, who represented the Club of the Century in the 70s and 80s, told Kingfut that Mosimane had stolen Weiler’s limelight and went on to express his lack of belief in “Jingles”.

“He took Weiler’s job and stole his successes after his departure in the midst of competitions, and any one of Al Ahly’s ‘sons’ is way better than Mosimane. I said before that I will wait and rate Pitso Mosimane at the end of the first leg of the league, and I discovered that he had stolen René Weiler’s success,” Youness told Kingfut.

He added: “No one talks to me about the fatigue problem in Al Ahly. They are the best team in Egypt. Al Ahly is used to accept Zamalek’s gifts and take advantage of them and secure the league title. However, the new thing this season is not only that Al Ahly reject Zamalek’s gifts, but instead gift them new ones.”

‘Did Msimanga and attacker make peace to cover up corruption?’ – ANC

May 7th 2021 at 06:04

The ANC caucus on Friday called on law enforcement agencies to investigate further the assault of Gauteng DA leader Solly Msimanga.

Msimanga was on Thursday assaulted by a man with a group of people who said they were there to collect items from Msimanga’s cousin’s business.

The man who attacked Msimanga has since apologised for the “unfortunate misunderstanding” and what he describes as a “scuffle”.

The unnamed man, standing alongside the former Tshwane mayor, expressed regret and said there was no money owed to him by Msimanga – which was the reported cause of the altercation.

The ANC said Msimanga and his “victim” may be covering up corruption by making peace after the incident escalated to the media.

It said the haste in which the matter was handled and resolved raised questions and suspicions.

“We call upon law enforcement agencies to properly investigate this incident despite claims that the perpetrator and Msimanga have smoked a peace pipe,” reads a statement by the party.

WATCH: Msimanga attacker sorry for spoiling former mayor’s ‘perfect day’

“We hope the so-called truce is not an attempt to cover up corruption allegations against Msimanga by his victim in the video. This brawl also exposes reasons why Msimanga was hiring bodybuilders as his advisors when he was  mayor.”

Msimanga was at the centre of an R12 billion infrastructure deal with GladAfrica.

The ANC also blasted the DA for coming to Msimanga’s defence.

“We are not surprised by the statement of the DA in defence of their blue-eyed boy, this is how they stood up for him when he was accused of sexually harassing former Gauteng MPL Nkele Molepo, whom the DA expelled from their party for making sexual harassment allegations against Msimanga,” reads the statement.

 

 

Please SA Post Office, stay in your (terribly managed) lane

May 7th 2021 at 05:58

You’ve got to hand it to South African state-owned entities. They may not have tremendous management skills, but they can certainly identify a cash cow to bleed dry.

The thing is, cows don’t only give you milk, if you farm them right they also provide more cows, so bleeding them dry might not be a fantastic idea in the long run.

It’s just that everybody believes that the cash cow being bled dry by Sapo’s ridiculous position – where they don’t want private couriers delivering packages less than 1kg – will only harm the couriers. Maybe it will, but it will likely harm South Africans even more.

Almost every industry thrives most when it is accessible, so access to fast, efficient and cost effective parcel delivery is key.

Small businesses manufacturing goods to those making food and countless others, are key functional drivers of our economy. A massive part of their success is their ability to get their goods to the end user.

Now the post office has an insurgency tactic to make it the only service provider of “choice”, while struggling to pay rent and despite billions in government bailouts over the past decade.

Spare me. Also correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t remember the private couriers ever being gifted with a cent in tax funds, yet they still seem to be able to deliver.

Dear old Sapo has lost it. This act of forcing their relevance to continue is just throwing twigs into a fledgling ember.

I understand that the law does prevent unlicensed couriers from delivering small mass parcels, but instead of blocking them, lobby for them. If they’re doing a better job, there’s no point to standing in their way.

In the Icasa case where this legal position was clarified, the finding even referred to the purpose: “The intention of Parliament was to protect Sapo against competition within the kilogram and less postage.”

But let’s face it, it’s not like protecting Sapo against competition is doing South Africans any good. In fact, it’s cost them billions already, so why would we allow this to go on?

Over in the US, Nasa realised the potential of the private sphere and instead of fighting it, lobbied for it and, guess what? The people benefit. It’s probably because Nasa is smart and realised that no matter how much it fights progress, it will lose to the detriment of its people.

So, instead, it offered support to the private sector and ensured the private sector plays within the bounds that are beneficial to the population.

It’s a good system. But not to Sapo. No, no, no. Disappointingly, seemingly not to Icasa either.

It’s not like these entities don’t have a history of lobbying for policy change. Think sports licensing, bans on broadcasting protest violence and a whole lot more. These national entities could lobby for a shift in policy, or even afford licences to private couriers, but they don’t.

I’m willing to disregard all of this. Perhaps I’d even be willing to give Sapo and its new management a chance if they just showed a little bit of brain with their legislative brawn. I just know they won’t, because it’s an entity that is old, lazy and unimaginative.

Their biggest brag this year, if you’re willing to ignore their difficulties in paying rent, is a back end integration with Chinese distributor Wish, or as they call it, a “strategic partnership”.

I’m unconvinced it’s worthwhile to brag about a bit of back end code a 16 year old could write in a weekend while you’re struggling to pay your bills. I’ll refrain from asking what they actually paid for that strategic partnership to work, because I know it will depress me.

And, sadly, that is not the most depressing thing about this saga. That award must go to the imbecilic notion that this plan is ever going to work in favour of Sapo. I wish they just had some sort of foresight into the effects of their actions.

So long as they can’t provide services  we’re used to getting reliably from private couriers, all Sapo will be doing is fuelling the market for 999g rocks, which will cost us all in the end.

Before Sapo starts flexing its unearned muscle in the market, it needs to show that it can deliver to that market and, well, I’m not convinced…

So, to quote an apt idiom, Sapo shouldn’t be concerning itself with breaking a functional industry to fail at saving itself. It should be concerning itself with the dichotomy of shaping up or shipping out.

Richard Anthony Chemaly. Entertainment attorney, radio broadcaster and lecturer in communication ethics.

WIN! Tell us what you think about languages and news

May 7th 2021 at 05:50

 

Share your opinions about the importance of languages in an online news environment.

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Alleged mastermind in Tshegofatso Pule’s murder denied bail again

May 7th 2021 at 05:47

Ntuthuko Shoba, the alleged mastermind behind the brutal murder of Tshegofatso Pule was on Friday denied his second bid for bail by the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court.

Shoba was first denied bail by the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court in March.

Shoba is facing charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and defeating the ends of justice for his alleged role in the murder of 28-year-old Pule.

The 32 year old was charged with Pule’s murder in February after Muzikayise Malephane pleaded guilty to the murder and turned state witness.

Malephane claimed he was hired by Shoba to kill Pule and make it look like suicide.

ALSO READ: Alleged mastermind of Tshegofatso Pule’s murder argues for bail

Pule, from Soweto, was eight months pregnant at the time of her death.

The case has been postponed to 17 May for an indictment.

Killer pleads guilty

Pule was found stabbed and hanging from a tree in a Roodepoort last June. She was eight months pregnant at the time.

Malephane, 31, was arrested in the weeks following Pule’s death and on 19 February in the Johannesburg high court, he pleaded guilty to murder and defeating the ends of justice as well as illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.

In accordance with a deal he struck with the state, Malaphane agreed to testify against the alleged mastermind behind Pule’s death.

Additional reporting from Bernadette Wicks and Siyanda Ndlovu

The importance of being alert of Cybercrime

May 7th 2021 at 05:34

“Fraudsters use websites or emails to trick you into giving out your personal or banking information. It’s important to stay up to date with the latest fraud trends so you can protect yourself. Never click on an Internet Banking sign link in an email or SMS,” says Carolina Reddy Head: Business Risk and Cybercrime at Standard Bank.

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to ensure that you steer clear of such scams and they rely solely on you being vigilant. Reddy has outlined various ways in which a cybercrime can be prevented when it comes to banking. Below is a list of the most common online scams and how you can prevent them from happening to you.

Phishing

This is a method used by cybercriminals to try and get your personal and banking details, such as your ID number, bank account number and credit/debit card number. They send emails impersonating companies or individuals asking you to click on a link directing you to a ‘spoofed’ website, which is a site designed to fool you into thinking that it is a legitimate website requesting you to verify your details, which the cyber-criminal uses to conduct fraud.

Vishing

Scammers call you impersonating the bank asking you for personal information and your one-time pin (OTP) to stop fraud on your account, meantime they are using this information to process fraudulent transactions against your card/bank accounts.

Change of Banking Detail Scams

This scam occurs when an unsuspecting individual receives notification that one of their suppliers has changed their banking details. The notification may come in the form of a telephone call, an email or a posted letter and will include the details of the new account, asking you to update your records. As a result, any future payments will be diverted into the fraudster’s account.

There are some general habits you can adopt to protect your personal and banking information online:

  • Don’t click on suspicious links and delete the email immediately.
  • Never share your one-time pin with anyone (including the bank).
  • If you suspect you have been compromised, contact your bank immediately.
  • Keep your personal information secure and ensure you have set up privacy settings on your social media accounts.
  • Contact the supplier directly to confirm if the bank account details have changed before making any payments.
  • Don’t use the same email address for your banking profile that you use for your social media accounts.
  • Use strong passwords that are difficult to socially engineer.
  • Do not log onto your digital banking on public WiFi.
  • Do not allow anyone to access your computer remotely. Someone from your bank will never ask you for Remote Access Control to update your information.
  • Be wary of spoofed websites which claim to be the legitimate website of an organisation and is set up to mimic the original website.

Says Reddy: “Consumers have embraced digital solutions in the last year and this has brought about unprecedented convenience and functionality. However, it has also meant that consumers have had to learn the safe habits of banking in the digital age. Consumers who are increasingly banking on digital channels should be aware of digital hygiene factors when banking as cybercriminals are likely to increase their activities as the adoption of digital channels increases.”

Be cyber wise and stay alert during the Easter season, scammers will be more prevalent than usual at this time. If you believe you have been scammed contact your bank immediately to ensure that you either recover your money speedily or prevent the scammers from taking what is yours. Stay alert and be WalletWise.

“It is important to remove emotion when working online. Be measured and responsible when it comes to managing your online profile and if you think you have been compromised contact Standard Bank immediately,” Reddy concludes.

Fiery debate over whether ANCWL should march for Magashule

May 7th 2021 at 05:29

A meeting of the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) on Thursday night saw a fiery debate over whether it should march in support of ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule.

A virtual meeting of its national working committee met to discuss the drama rocking the ANC in which suspended party secretary-general Ace Magashule seeks to suspend President Cyril Ramaphosa.

A source with knowledge of the meeting told News24 that ANCWL president Bathabile Dlamini noted in her opening address the women of the ANC could not sit back while party leaders were fighting.

“She was saying that as women we have to act when the kids are fighting,” the source said.

ALSO READ: ‘Autonomous’ ANCWL can meet with Zuma whenever they want, says ANC

It was proposed to the meeting that the league either met with the ANC leadership on the matter or march to the party’s national executive committee (NEC) sitting this weekend.

Magashule has defied his suspension from the party which was imposed following his resistance to stepping aside from his position pending the outcome of his criminal trial.

The charge against Dlamini was led by Deputy Communications Minister Pinky Kekana who was said to have argued the decision of the ANC NEC was binding on the league and it could not support Magashule’s defiance.

Kekana argued the ANCWL had to “look at the picture” and the women of the ANC could not repeat the mistakes of supporting former president Jacob Zuma blindly in his rape trial.

The source noted: Pinky said that the real victims of corruption are women and they bear the brunt of it.

Another league leader from Limpopo was said to have supported this charge, resisting any suggestion to side with Magashule on the matter.

A second source noted the meeting heard the ANCWL could not be on the wrong side of history in the fight against corruption.

Magashule’s defiance of his suspension is expected to dominate discussions at the ANC NEC meeting over the weekend.

READ MORE: ANCWL leaders quiet on gender issues, for fear of losing positions

In the letter, which was dated 3 May, Magashule said he was informing Ramaphosa of his suspension, following a decision of the ANC’s national working committee (NWC).

“You have been reported to the Serious Offences Directorate and the matter of sealed documents relating to your CR17 campaign prior and during the national conference is pending before our courts,” he wrote.

In a statement, Magashule said his suspension from the ANC was unconstitutional and he announced he would appeal.

“I have also, in accordance with the powers vested in me as the secretary-general of the ANC, and furthermore, in full compliance with the relevant conference resolutions summarily, suspended the president of the ANC, Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa [sic],” he added in the statement.

Ramaphosa is said to have told the ANC parliamentary caucus on Thursday he was “dismayed” by the letter and it was “null and void”.

Attempts to get comment from the ANCWL were unsuccessful. Its comment will be added once received.

‘Gauteng prepared for third Covid-19 wave’ – Makhura

May 7th 2021 at 05:28

South Africa remains at significant risk of a third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, which is already showing early signs of rising cases in Gauteng according to Premier David Makhura.

“All indications are that we are in the early phase of the third wave and nobody should come tell us otherwise. Nobody should say there will be no third wave,” Makhura said.

Makhura was speaking at the opening of a newly built 150-bed Covid-19 isolation ward at Bronkhospruit Hospital on Thursday.

ALSO READ: Where is the Covid-19 third wave? Well, it’s probably closer than you think

In partnership between the Gauteng government, BMW South Africa and the German government, the hospital has been upgraded to a 210-bed facility, after the addition to the preexisting 60 beds.

The premier said the provincial government was not only erecting field hospitals, but building infrastructure that would continue to provide communities with access to healthcare services beyond the Covid-19 pandemic.

Speaking about Gauteng’s readiness for the third Covid-19 wave, Makhura said the province was prepared and the focus had been on flattening the infection curve.

“We have also added additional staff – 4,000 professionals – to the staff complement of the department of health,” he said.

READ MORE: If government says don’t panic about Covid-19 – please do

The premier said the province was monitoring the possibility of increasing hospital admissions, among other things.

“We are monitoring hospital admissions, mortality and the increase in mobility. Our team of scientists says when there is increased mobility and increased interactions between people the risk is far greater.

“What have we learned during the first and second wave was to build tracking capacity with a team of scientists monitoring cases on a daily basis. They will be able to pick up which areas are hot spots,” he said.

WATCH: Premier @David_Makhura speaks on the anticipated third wave in the province. “We are monitoring hospital admissions, mortality and the increase in mobility. The province has built enormous tracking capacity which includes monitoring on a daily basis.” pic.twitter.com/6Rr3dOn86W

— GautengGov (@GautengProvince) May 6, 2021

Makhura has also expressed his concern about the resurgence of Covid-19 cases in India.

Gauteng’s largest metropolitan districts – Johannesburg , Sedibeng, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane – have seen a more than 20% average increase in cases over the past two weeks, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said on Thursday evening.

In a statement, Mkhize said there was a “worrying trend” of rising cases, which had prompted the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) to flag the districts as “under observation”.

The minister said even though some of districts had a low numbers of cases, the “significant rise in percentage changes should be taken as a serious warning”.

According to the NICD, Gauteng is expected to be the hardest-hit province, since it is home to more than a quarter of South Africa’s population.

Co-parenting as a working mom my biggest challenge – Fae Fae

May 7th 2021 at 05:12

Limpopo-born DJ Faith Makubung, now affectionately known as DJ Fae Fae, is a mom to a beautiful boy who reminds her of herself.

DJ Fae Fae says her life story is a “crazy” one and she tells her story to inspire other young girls to rewrite theirs. 

Falling pregnant during her second year of studies at the University of Johannesburg, Faith had to adjust her plans. Motherhood did not make her abandon her life dreams. Instead, she wanted to model the kind of drive her son would need to display to have the life he dreams for himself. She appears on YFM’s Mix Capital on Saturdays between 10pm and 2am. 

DJ Fae Fae recently answered some of the big mom questions that give us a glimpse into her motherhood journey. 

Being a mom is… both a blessing and one of the biggest challenges and responsibilities I have ever had outside of being responsible for my own life. 

My advice to other moms would be… first you need to embrace your role as a mother the best way you can. Love your child unconditionally because they are an extension of who you are. Another thing is not to give up on the journey because it will never end. Always ask for help because it does take a village to raise a child. 

My favourite part about being a mom is… the fact I have a smaller male version of myself who has his own personality and reminds me of a younger me.

The biggest challenge isco-parenting while working.

My success as a parent is measured by… my child’s happiness and his best interests being met no matter how hard things get in my life. 

The most important affirmation I say to my child is…you are special and surrounded by love. 

The most important behaviour/attitude I mirror for my child is… discipline and hard work. I want my son to understand nothing worthwhile in life comes easy and effortlessly. You have to work towards the future you want.  

My work-life balance as a working mom is… all about managing myself and my time effectively to ensure that I have the strength to give the best to my personal life, career and being a mother to my boy.

Tito Mboweni a ‘drunkard’ – Shivambu lashes out after ruckus in Parly

May 7th 2021 at 05:10

EFF deputy president and MP Floyd Shivambu hit back at Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s criticism of the EFF’s conduct in the National Assembly on Thursday, saying “Drunkards must focus on alcohol and Magoebaskloof”.

This after Mboweni accused the EFF on Twitter of being disorderly and disrespectful to President Cyril Ramaphosa during his question and answer session.

Responding to MPs questions during a hybrid sitting of the House, Ramaphosa’s was briefly interrupted by Shivambu and several EFF MPs who quizzed him about his legitimacy as the country’s president following his “counter-suspension” from the ANC by the party’s suspended secretary-general Ace Magashule.

ALSO READ: Who are you representing? EFF quizzes Ramaphosa over ANC ‘suspension’

“All of us who are here are representing political parties and, as far as we are concerned, Mr Ramaphosa is suspended from the ANC. He must clarify who is he representing, is he representing his jacket or a political party because he is not,” Shivambu said.

However, his question was shot down by the deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Lechesa Tsenoli, who said the question was not related to Ramaphosa’s responsibilities as the head of state.

DA leader John Steenhuisen also accused the president of “waging a factional war” while the country faced several challenges.

In response, Ramaphosa told Steenhuisen to mind his own business because “what is happening in the ANC is not your business.”

‘Disruptive’ and ‘drunkards’

Taking to Twitter after Ramaphosa’s session, Mboweni without specifically naming the EFF tweeted: “To be disruptive, disorderly, disrespectful, uncouth, ungovernable and noisy in the National Assembly is not revolutionary. It is left-wing childishness!! Actually right-wing behaviour and anti-democracy!”

To be disruptive, disorderly, disrespectful, uncouth, ungovernable and noisy in the National Assembly is not revolutionary. It is left-wing childishness!! Actually right-wing behaviour and anti democracy!

— Tito Mboweni (@tito_mboweni) May 6, 2021

In response, Shivambu took a swipe at the minister and accused him of being a drunkard who attends “90% of National Treasury meetings under the influence of alcohol.” He also said Mboweni had failed to manage South Africa’s economy and to implement resolutions of the ANC’s 2017 national conference on the establishment of a state bank.

He tweeted: “To dismally fail to manage South Africa’s economy and to attend 90% of National Treasury meetings under the influence of alcohol. Failure to implement resolutions on State Bank and Sarb [South African Reserve Bank] is counter revolutionary and reactionary. Drunkards must focus on alcohol and Magoebaskloof.”

To dismally fail to manage South Africa’s economy and to attend 90% of National Treasury meetings under the influence of alcohol. Failure to implement resolutions on State Bank and SARB is counter revolutionary and reactionary. Drunkards must focus on alcohol and Magoebaskloof. https://t.co/VdJCXDzTWi

— Floyd Shivambu (@FloydShivambu) May 6, 2021

READ NEXT: Does the ANC have the backbone to serve Ace the Malema treatment?

‘I had my 11th baby in lockdown while competing in Mrs SA’

May 7th 2021 at 05:08

Mrs South Africa 2020 finalist Pearl Osa found out she was pregnant with her 11th child shortly after she entered Mrs SA  in February 2020. That did not deter her.

Pregnant in a pageant

Pearl, 42, chose not to share news of her pregnancy with her online audience.

“I chose not to disclose my pregnancy because I didn’t want to hear the negativity and other people’s projection of how impossible it would be,” Pearl says. She had assumed the pageant would be canceled after the Covid-19 lockdown announcement was made in March 2020.

The pageant continued and Pearl had to continue finding sponsors for her campaign while pregnant. This was a challenge for her: “I sure did not look anything like a beauty queen because I couldn’t keep dieting and exercising.

“I knew that my assignment in the pageant was to demonstrate the possibility to other mothers; to let them know that having children could be the beginning and not the end of their dreams and aspirations,” Pearl says.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Pearl Osa (@mrspearlosa)

Pearl kept going as a beauty queen, mom, author, philanthropist, content creator and other roles in entertainment.

“During the lockdown, pregnant and in a pageant, I was still releasing music with my husband, running with my charity work of feeding widows and generating content for my YouTube channel and other social media platforms.”

She was also home schooling her children and her successes on that front have been undeniable. “My five year old learned to read and my four year old is almost ready as he is reading his single-syllable words,” Pearl says.

Her home schooling journey recently celebrated a big milestone when her oldest child, 16, was accepted to a university.

Pearl says “anyone who knows the process of university admission will know that is a story of possibility in and of itself.”

A former head of learning and development in the banking and telecoms industries, Pearl has been home schooling her children since 2014. She made this decision after an “uninspiring” chat with her children’s teacher in 2013.

What kept Pearl going?

The pandemic and subsequent lockdowns changed many lives and took many others. “I think with the devastating impact of the pandemic on people’s lives, I became more determined to be a symbol of hope and new beginnings,” she says.

“If a mother with 10 children can go through a pregnancy and parent 10 children during a lockdown, it is possible for me too.” This is what Pearl wanted to inspire other women to believe.

She refused to quit. She got creative and sourced support for her first and possibly last pageant. “I took advantage of the ‘new normal’, holding meetings and sending proposals virtually.”

Pearl made it on a virtual top 50 judging event while she was six months pregnant.

When the pageant could continue as normal again, Pearl had given birth and had two weeks to “shape up”. She collaborated with a fitness brand and continued to share her journey in her book, My Journey to Beautiful.

“Motherhood has been a central driving force of the career decisions I have made,” Pearl says. She left corporate SA when she was a mom of four children. “I knew that, as one who had a unique calling to have these children, the private sector was not for me.”

Being an edutainer and mompreneur has afforded her the flexibility to put her children first and leave a meaningful and impactful legacy for her generation.

Her Mother’s Day message to you

Pearl urges mothers to explore and fulfil their every purpose and assignment in the appropriate season of their lives. To them, she says: “Shine in front of your children, shine for them so that they have permission from you to be great.”

Additive used in sweets and cakes not safe: EU watchdog

May 7th 2021 at 05:05

The EU’s food watchdog on Thursday said that a widely-used additive, known as the artificial colouring E171 on food labels, should “no longer be considered safe” for consumption.

E171 contains nanoparticles of titanium dioxide, and is commonly used in consumer products. In food, it is used mainly as a whitening and brightening agent in sweets, chewing gum, white sauces and cake icing. But its use in food was suspended in France last year over health fears.

The Italy-based European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) said that following a review of the evidence, there was a risk that titanium dioxide nanoparticles could cause DNA damage, and no safe level for its daily intake could be established.

“Taking into account all available scientific studies and data, the panel concluded that titanium dioxide can no longer be considered safe as a food additive,” said Maged Younes, chair of EFSA’s expert panel on food additives. It is now up to the European Commission and individual EU member states to decide whether to ban the additive.

ALSO READ: Baking has never been so stress-free

France suspended its use in food last year, following research suggesting titanium dioxide could cause pre-cancerous lesions in lab rats.

“A critical element in reaching this conclusion is that we could not exclude genotoxicity concerns after consumption of titanium dioxide particles,” Younes said in a statement.

“After oral ingestion, the absorption of titanium dioxide particles is low, however they can accumulate in the body.”

Genotoxicity refers to the ability of a chemical substance to damage DNA.Matthew Wright, chairman of EFSA’s working group on E171, added: “Although the evidence for general toxic effects was not conclusive, on the basis of the new data and strengthened methods we could not rule out a concern for genotoxicity.”And consequently we could not establish a safe level for daily intake of the food additive.”

Lions boss Gatland on leaving Sexton out and facing the Boks

May 7th 2021 at 05:01

Warren Gatland said concerns over Johnny Sexton’s “durability” lay behind one of his “toughest decisions” in omitting the veteran flyhalf from the upcoming British and Irish Lions tour of South Africa.

Ireland captain Sexton was the most high-profile absentee from the 37-man squad unveiled by Lions boss Gatland on Thursday, with the New Zealander opting for Wales’ Dan Biggar, England’s Owen Farrell and Scotland’s Finn Russell as his three No 10s for the July-August campaign.

Sexton, a veteran of 105 Tests, has featured in the Lions’ last six internationals spanning the 2013 series win in Australia and drawn encounter in New Zealand four years ago.

He also impressed for Ireland during this season’s Six Nations.

ALSO READ: Alun Wyn Jones to lead 2021 Lions in SA

But Sexton, whose career has featured several head injuries, has since suffered concussions.

While Gatland said he had a “huge amount of respect for Sexton”, 36 in July, worries about his ability to get through a tour culminating with three Tests in as many weeks against the physical, world champion Springboks had counted against him.

“It was one of the toughest decisions we had to make,” Gatland told reporters.

“When we looked that we are going to South Africa, the thing that we kept coming back to is Johnny’s durability and being able to put a string of big matches together consecutively,” the New Zealander added.

“He’s been rested on a number of occasions and unfortunately that’s what swayed it for us – not having the confidence that he could get through a tough, physical tour.”

‘Exciting Simmonds’

By contrast, Exeter No 8 Sam Simmonds is in the squad even though the reigning European player of the year won the last of his seven England caps in 2018.

“For the Springboks you’ve got to have players in your forward pack who don’t just put the ball under their arm and run hard and straight,” Gatland said.

“You need players with footwork and Simmonds has that and pace. He also scores tries. I’m really excited about him getting the chance.”

South Africa have not played a Test since winning the 2019 World Cup final in Japan because of the fall-out from the Covid-19 pandemic.

ALSO READ: Meet Lions tourist Duhan van der Merwe

But Gatland, ahead of his third tour as Lions head coach, was in no doubt of their quality.

“I think South Africa have gone back to their DNA,” he said.

“It’s about being physical and winning that physical battle…It’s going to be brutal at times.”

Prior to a warm-up Test against Japan at Murrayfield on June 26, the Lions will hold a training camp in Jersey.

A self-governing territory dependent on Britain for its defence, Jersey has been at the centre of a post Brexit row between the UK and France over fishing rights.

London recalled two navy vessels on Thursday while protesting French fishermen returned home without blockading the Channel Island’s main port.

“I’m only concentrating on the rugby side, not the gunboats and the other stuff that’s going on,” said Gatland.

“We’ve just got to make sure that if we do go fishing, we don’t go out too far,” he added jokingly.

WATCH: Dramatic footage emerges of Nafiz Modack’s arrest

May 7th 2021 at 05:00

Dramatic footage has emerged showing the arrest of alleged underworld figure and businessman, Nafiz Modack, in Cape Town a week ago.

At the time, the Hawks said a specially comprised team effected several arrests in Century View on Thursday, followed by further arrests the next morning.

This followed the case of the attempted murder of lawyer William Booth, as well as gang-related extortion, kidnapping and intimidation in the Milnerton area.

Hawks spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale said that, when the team attempted to stop the suspects last Thursday, they accelerated and a vehicle missed one of the officers. “A high speed chase ensued and the suspects were cornered at Sable road and arrested.”

#ModackArrest Footage of Nafiz MODACK arrest last week in Cape Town.. By @SAPoliceService Special Task Force @BOSBEER2006 @1SecondLater @MARIUSBROODRYK @News24 pic.twitter.com/LGYZTrdL7R

— BOSBEER.COM (@BOSBEER2006) May 6, 2021

The footage shows a Toyota Hilux being cornered by two vehicles next to a construction site. Construction workers are seen running away after spotting the officers jump out, brandishing firearms and surrounding the vehicle.

The officers open the front doors and appear to place Modack, in the driver’s seat, on the ground.

“During the arrest, two vehicles were searched. Inside the Mercedes with two occupants that was stopped, two unlicensed firearms were recovered. In the second vehicle, a Toyota Hilux with two occupants, an unlicensed firearm was recovered,” said Mogale.

Modack faces charges of attempted murder, reckless driving and a charge of resisting arrest – related to the car chase captured in the footage.

He appeared in court this week, along with his co-accused Jacques Cronje and Ricardo Morgan.

The three face charges of intimidation, kidnapping, extortion, money laundering, violation of the Electronic Communications Act and charges under the Prevention of Organised Crime Act. Modack and Morgan are also charged with the attempted murder of Booth, conspiracy to commit murder, and pinging (cellphone location tracking).

As an armoured vehicle took Modack away from the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Monday, some of his supporters called out: “We love you, Nafiz!”

Modack is known for providing meals for impoverished families in some Cape Town suburbs.

An online petition currently circulating asks that he be released on bail.

The matter is expected back in court on Friday.

Additional reporting by Jenni Evans.

News24

Troublesome Masibusane Zongo chased out at Chiefs

May 7th 2021 at 04:58

Masibusane Zongo has been chased out of Bizana Pondo Chiefs where he was given another chance to resuscitate his career.

ALSO READ: DStv Premiership sides show interest in Sekhukhune striker Nxumalo

This comes after he breached the struggling GladAfrica Championship side’s code of conduct again by absconding training.

“We went out in a Sunday evening and only came back in the early hours of the morning on Monday. When his teammates tried to wake him up to go to training, he refused and asked them to tell the coach he had gone to a gym.

“The coach however found out the truth somehow, and told him to go back home and think hard about what he wants to do with his life. But he couldn’t go because he didn’t even have transport money. The coach was going to try and hide it from management by saying he had a groin problem and was sent home to recuperate.

“The latest I heard was that he had been chased out of the club house because he was not supposed to be there and is a bad influence on other players,” said a source.

Zongo had been forgiven after doing the same thing a few weeks ago. That time, he had caused a radius when he came back as he jumped over a fence and aroused neighbours’ dogs.

Beijing downplays risk of damage on Earth from rocket re-entry

May 7th 2021 at 04:56

China said Friday the risk of damage on Earth from a rocket which fell out of orbit after separating from Beijing’s space station was “extremely low”, after the United States warned it could crash down onto an inhabited area.

Military experts in the US expect the body of the Long March 5B rocket to fall to the surface some time around Saturday or Sunday, but warned it was difficult to predict where it will land and when.

But Beijing downplayed the risk of any damage on Friday.

“The probability of causing harm to aviation activities or (on people and activities) on the ground is extremely low,” foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said.

Most of the components would be destroyed upon re-entry into the atmosphere, he added, saying authorities “will inform the public of the situation in a timely manner.”

China has poured billions of dollars into space exploration in efforts to reflect its rising global stature and growing technological might, following in the extra-terrestrial footsteps of the US, Russia and Europe.

The launch of the first module of its “Heavenly Palace” space station in April was a milestone in Beijing’s ambitious plan to establish a permanent human presence in space.

China also said in March it was planning to build a separate lunar space station with Russia.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Thursday said the US military had no plans to shoot down the Chinese rocket.

“We have the capability to do a lot of things, but we don’t have a plan to shoot it down,” Austin told journalists.

He suggested that the Chinese were negligent in letting the rocket body fall out of orbit, saying those who were in the “space domain” should “operate in a safe and thoughtful mode.”

Prince Kaybee wants ‘mistress’ to go to jail despite apology

May 7th 2021 at 04:52

Kabelo Motsamai, known as Prince Kaybee, is not taking the events of the past week lightly after his nudes were posted online by his “mistress”, Hazel.

After she apologised on Thursday evening due to legal threats by Prince Kaybee, “Hazel Mahazard” quickly backtracked in a now deleted tweet.

She described her actions as “unjust” and “uncalled for”, adding she had since deleted the post she shared on Twitter.

“Would like to take this opportunity to apologise to Kabelo for the posts and any damage the last picture may have caused to his dignity, public image, personal life and his businesses,” her statement read.

However straight after this, she claimed the musician had asked for another rendezvous weeks before.

Prince Kaybee 'mistress' Hazel

Hazel Mahazard, as she refers to herself on social media, seemed to backtrack on her apology. Picture: Screenshot/Twitter

READ NEXT: Prince Kaybee’s ‘mistress’ apologises after legal action threats

Despite Hazel denying they had sexual relations, Prince Kaybee publicly admitted he had cheated on his girlfriend, Zola Mhlongo. The award winning artist has continued to be outspoken against Hazel’s actions, particularly her posting his private images to the world.

After the apology, Prince Kaybee indicated he was still taking legal action when a fan commented he had to “teach her a lesson” and “make an example”.

His response spoke volumes.

She’s going to jail mate❤️ https://t.co/6s4N52es9w

— THE 4TH REPUBLIC (@PrinceKaybee_SA) May 6, 2021

The reactions of Hazel’s apology and then somewhat of a retraction was a talking point on Twitter.

ALSO READ: What really happened between Prince Kaybee and Zola?

Warning, some tweets do contain expletive language.

If I don’t fear fokol was a person, hazel is a Legend ???????????????? pic.twitter.com/KsZ5j6Yqvd

— 2021 AFRICA (@2021AFRICA) May 6, 2021

Hazel really said “Nah fuck this shit????????????????” pic.twitter.com/Vf5C5qdWtG

— asamkeleee (@asamkele_kay_) May 6, 2021

If you never had a sexual relationship, how did you end up with his Nudes??? pic.twitter.com/YEPikxzkJ2

— Effort (@effort_maguta) May 6, 2021

Hazel just said “ I know I’ve apologised.. kodwa oksalayo hey…????????‍♀️”

— Lerato ???? (@I_Kimberraxie) May 6, 2021

Highlanders coach exits early to help Japan prep for Lions

May 7th 2021 at 04:46

Coach Tony Brown has been forced skip Otago Highlanders’ Super Rugby Trans-Tasman campaign to help Japan prepare to face the British and Irish Lions, in a situation he conceded Friday was “not ideal”.

Brown has contracts with both the Highlanders and the rugby union in Japan, where he coached the now defunct Sunwolves and was an assistant with the Brave Blossoms at the 2019 World Cup.

The roles were never supposed to overlap but Brown said rescheduling caused by the pandemic had created a clash that left him unable to fill both roles.

“Having to head to Japan earlier than expected is disappointing particularly leaving my (Highlanders) team before the end of the season, it’s not what anyone would have wanted,” he said.

ALSO READ: Meet Lions tourist Duhan van der Merwe

The Brave Blossoms play the Lions in Edinburgh on June 26 in a warm-up for the composite team’s tour of South Africa.

Brown said Japan’s internationals had not spent time together since 2019 and they would undergo a short but intense preparation before heading to Scotland.

The Super Rugby Trans-Tasman competition – which pits Australian and New Zealand clubs against each other for the first time since the pandemic began – runs from May 14 to June 19.

“The way it has worked out means Brownie’s international obligations suddenly overlap with his Super Rugby duties, which obviously is a situation that doesn’t sit comfortably with anyone,” Highlanders chief executive Roger Clark said.

He said assistant coach Clarke Dermody would take over, with Brown providing regular input remotely.

Brown’s contract with the Highlanders runs until the end of next season.

It was important to get a win over Leopards, says Pirates defender Jooste

May 7th 2021 at 04:39

After a sterling performance that helped Orlando Pirates secure a 3-0 victory over Black Leopards in a DStv Premiership clash at the Orlando Stadium on Thursday, defender Wayde Jooste says they knew that coming up against Leopards was going to be tough.

ALSO READ: Orlando Pirates bounce back to winning ways with convincing victory over Black Leopards

The 29-year-old Port Elizabeth born defender pulled out a man-of-the-match performance with his runs on the right side of the Bucs attack which ultimately saw Bucs get the opening goal of the match after his cross was slotted into the back of the net by Tshegofatso Mabasa, who scored a brace on the day.

“It was a very tough game, you know when you’re playing these teams that are facing relegation it’s tough to get points against them. Because we know they are going to come here with the aim of at least trying to get a point, so we had to work hard. Together as a team we spoke to each other before the game and during half-time as well and it paid off at the end,” said the right-back.

“Tshego and I always communicate at training. We always speak and he will tell me, look, when you get the ball you know where to find me. Sometimes I don’t even have to look up, I just know that he is going to be there in a good area.”

The former Bloemfontein Celtic, Golden Arrows and the now dissolved Highlands Park player acknowledges that it was imperative for the club to get a win especially after a humiliating 3-0 loss to Mamelodi Sundowns prior to the Leopards clash.

The Buccaneers next host Cape Town based outfit Stellenbosch FC in their next league encounter and Jooste adds that they need to continue winning.

“It was important for us to bounce back, because we know the last result was not the best result. And we need to get the momentum going to get a few wins on the trot,” he concluded.

Bucs have five league games remaining after the win over Lidoda Duvha placed them in fourth place on the log standings with 42 points from 25 matches.

Storms continue to batter Western Cape, more rain expected

May 7th 2021 at 04:35

Heavy winter storms continue to take a toll on the Western Cape, with more adverse weather conditions expected to continue going into the weekend.

The Overberg district, specifically Bredasdorp, Struisbaai, Riviersonderend and surrounding areas, continue to be hardest hit by the winter storm that made landfall on Tuesday evening.

SAPS assist with rescue operations during flooding https://t.co/wf4X98x3AR#ArriveAlive #RescueOperations #Flooding @SAPoliceService pic.twitter.com/MfJPNy0qBg

— Arrive Alive (@_ArriveAlive) May 7, 2021

SA Weather Service (Saws) forecaster Brinsby Bulo said more warnings of heavy rains and possible localised flooding had been issued for Cape Town and George from this evening to tomorrow morning.

Moving inland, Bulo said there was a 30% chance of thunderstorms tonight in Johannesburg and Vereeniging, spreading into the Gauteng province overnight to Saturday morning in Pretoria, Springs and Hammanskraal.

“KwaZulu-Natal should also expect a 30% chance of thunderstorm this evening. Tomorrow the chances of rain will increase to 60% all over the province,” he said.

ALSO READ: PICS: Western Cape roads flooded as more rain expected

Yesterday Western Cape local government spokesperson James-Brent Styan said rescue operations were continuing following the death of two people in Bonnievale after the truck they were travelling in became stuck between a river and vineyard.

This is after a cold front and adverse weather conditions in some parts of the Western Cape resulted in widespread showers, thunderstorms, strong winds and very rough sea conditions.

Styan said two people were reported missing, one in Stormsvlei and another in Riviersonderend where the evacuation of 30 farm workers was under way.

A mother and her three children were rescued in Stormsvlei, two men in Riviersonderend and another two in Greyton, with two medical evacuations ongoing in Riviersonderend.

The Malgas community has been cut off by the rising Breede River and the area is at risk of being flooded.

????⚠️ Malgas Pont – Not operational until further notice
Due to current and predicted weather conditions, the pont will need to be anchored up the access slope to avoid being washed away.
The pont will not be able to ferry vehicles and passengers across the river during this time. pic.twitter.com/Hcz7hSxTyR

— Overberg District Municipality (@OverbergDM) May 6, 2021

The rising water levels are being monitored by the Department of Water and Sanitation.

Residents in the lower-lying areas must exercise caution & should remove pumps etc. from the water’s edge. Rene White (082 658 2725) & Donavan McPherson (066 285 5166) can be contacted to assist with storage space & coordination.

— Overberg District Municipality (@OverbergDM) May 6, 2021

Meet Lions tourist Duhan van der Merwe

May 7th 2021 at 04:34

Who is Duhan van der Merwe really – the South Africa-born wing who was included as one of the “bolters” in the British and Irish Lions touring squad to South Africa on Thursday?

Van der Merwe’s inclusion in the 37-man squad drew the biggest interest locally because of his connections with South Africa.

A powerful winger of 106kg and 1.93m tall, the 25-year-old follows in the footsteps of Ireland No 8 CJ Stander who was another former SA player to become a Lion – on the previous tour of 2017 to New Zealand. The Munster player, who will retire from rugby shortly, missed out on selection this time.

Ironically both Van der Merwe and Stander received recognition abroad after not being recognised in Pretoria and by the Bulls.

ALSO READ: Alun Wyn Jones to lead 2021 Lions in SA

Taking a closer look at Van Der Merwe’s exploits, the younger brother of Bok hooker Akker, was born in George in the Western Cape and attended Outeniqua High School.

Van der Merwe quickly caught the eye; he was selected for the SA Schools side in 2012-13 for whom he played five matches and he also turned out in two games for the SA U20 side in 2014.

After school he attended the University of Pretoria where he played for the University of Pretoria Tuks team in eight games, scoring 74 points.

Wing Duhan van der Merwe

Duhan van der Merwe played for Tuks in the Varsity Cup competition. Here he is in action against Maties in 2016. Picture: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

Van der Merwe played two matches for the Bulls in 2016 before moving to Montpellier in France where he played four games until 2017.

The powerful winger’s fortunes changed for the better when he joined the Edinburgh Rugby Club in 2017. He qualified to play for Scotland through the three-year residency rule and it wasn’t long before the Scottish selectors started to notice his strong performances in the Pro14 and European club competitions.

Van der Merwe was duly picked by Scotland last year and he has been one of his team’s star performers in the Six Nations, scoring eight tries in just 10 Tests.

He has so far played 64 games for his club Edinburgh, which have brought him 155 points from 31 tries.

And now Van der Merwe is ready to thrill in the country of his birth.

His proud older brother Akker, as well as rugby fans in Europe and South Africa, will be watching.

WATCH: Man attempts suicide after killing wife

May 7th 2021 at 04:33

Police have arrested a man in connection with the murder of his wife after he reportedly found her with another man inside a car at a mall in Polokwane.

“Preliminary police investigations revealed that the deceased, who is believed to be from Seshego township, was with another man inside a vehicle when her husband arrived,” said police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojalefa.

“An argument ensued and the husband, 34, allegedly took out a firearm and shot the woman several times. She died instantly.”

#BREAKING A man try to commit suicide after he shot his girlfriend and another man. Scene active all services on scene. Polokwane, Limpopo… @BOSBEER2006 @1SecondLater @MARIUSBROODRYK @News24 @SAPoliceService @eNCA pic.twitter.com/Wca3WuzZPC

— BOSBEER.COM (@BOSBEER2006) May 6, 2021

“The man who is reported to have been together with the deceased fled from the scene and his identity is a subject of investigation.”

After the incident, a video of the alleged perpetrator trying to commit suicide surfaced on social media.

In the video, he can be seen standing on the edge of a high-rise building threatening to jump off.

Mojapelo said police managed to restrain the man and a murder case has been opened and “he will be  appearing in the Polokwane Magistrate’s Court soon”.

ALSO READ: Reason for businessman killing his wife and father plagues judge

He said police later recovered a firearm believed to have been used in the killing.

“The firearm will be subjected to a ballistic examination to determine if it was used in the commission of other serious crimes. Its lawfulness will also form part of the unfolding investigation. The motive for the killing is unknown at this stage but domestic violence cannot be ruled out,” Mojalefa said.

Police urged members of the community to seek professional assistance when confronted with domestic or relationship challenges and desist from resorting to extreme measures which can lead to serious injuries or the loss of life.

ALSO READ: Traffic cop kills himself, girlfriend as Limpopo GBV cases spike

 

Toyota GR Hilux could possibly lead to a GR Fortuner

May 7th 2021 at 04:28

With centre stage over the past few weeks and months having gone to the all-new Land Cruiser 300 and incoming brand-new Hilux, speculation from Australia has flared up that Toyota could potentially introduce a GR version of the Fortuner.

Not official at present, carsguide.com.au reports the automaker hasn’t ruled out the possibility of a GR Fortuner despite declining to provide any further details. If approved, expect it to use the same 230kW/687Nm 3.3-litre turbodiesel V6 that will power the Land Cruiser 300 and indeed the GR Hilux.

Reportedly buoyed by the success of the GR Yaris, which sold out not long after arriving Down Under, Toyota Australia vice-president of sales and marketing Sean Hanley told the online publication the rally derived model’s feat had given it “confidence” to encourage Toyota Japan to approve more GR models.

RELATED: All-new Toyota Fortuner coming in 2022 with hybrid assistance

“For us, it’s given us a lot of confidence – confidence we can take back to our parent company to talk about things we could potentially do in the future. We definitely see opportunity for the GR band extending through our range,” Hanley said.

The arrival of the GR Hilux, which is only expected next year or in 2023 based on the all-new model, comes on the back of it being reported in January the third generation Fortuner could debut at the same time with hybrid assistance.

Seeing as the Fortuner rides on the same platform as the Hilux, which for the next generation will be the new TNGA-F earmarked for the Land Cruiser 300 and the North American Tundra currently undergoing testing, a GR model could well happen with the new oil-burner paired with the new ten-speed automatic gearbox.

For now, the GR Fortuner remains a speculative model but don’t be surprised if more details and rumours about it emerge over the coming weeks and months.

WIN with SKYN® ELITE condoms

May 7th 2021 at 04:24

SKYN® Elite is No.1 on Amazon.com

SKYN, the world’s No. 1 non-latex condom brand, celebrates yet another milestone. SKYN Elite is now the best selling condom on Amazon.com with SKYN Original taking the No. 4 slot.

SKYN are premium condoms made from the revolutionary SKYNFEEL™ technology, a non-latex material which feels incredibly soft and comfortable. The condom uniquely delivers an incredibly natural feel, full of sensitivity. Dana Leibovitz, marketing head for specialist health and beauty distributor, ACDOCO SA says, “On top of all these achievements, SKYN has been SA’s fastest growing condom brand year on year over the last 3 years. More and more South Africans every year choose to #FeelEverything with SKYN”.

ACDOCO SA recently launched SKYN Elite 3s in South Africa. SKYN Elite is 20% thinner than Original giving couples and even greater skin-to-skin sensation.

SKYN Condoms are available at all leading retailers – https://bit.ly/BuySomeSKYN

Competition closes Sunday, 23 May 2020 at midnight.

Ts&Cs apply. Competition will run online only. By entering the competition, you accept The Citizen’s standard terms and conditions.

Enter now by completing the form below:

SKYN Elite May Comp

‘Best scene on local TV?’ -Tweeps react to the latest ‘The Queen Mzansi’

May 7th 2021 at 04:08

The latest episode of South African telenovela The Queen Mzansi had avid viewers of the telenovela in absolute awe awe and shock.

On last night’s episode of The Queen Mzansi, Thembisa Mdoda-Nxumalo, who now plays Vuyiswa, was due to marry her love, Thato Hector.

Mdoda-Nxumalo first appeared on the show on 19 April as the new Vuyiswa, after Mzansi Magic announced Msutwana sustained an injury on set and has been booked off to recover at home.

Shockingly, Vuyiswa’s fiance was killed in an altercation moments before exchanging wedding vows.

Xolani  Mayekiso who plays Thato took to Twitter to announce his departure from the show and to express his gratitude for the opportunity to be a part of The Queen Mzansi.

Thank you for welcoming “Thato” in to your homes from season 2. The opportunity has been amazing. What a journey… I’m so grateful.
Itsss a WRAP guys!!
Big thank you to the cast & crew
@the_queen_mzansi @mzansimagic.
Ngiyabonga???????? #TheQueenMzansi
Love you all ❤️❤️❤️
ABUTIIII

— Xolani A. Mayekiso (@XolaniMayekiso) May 6, 2021

Here are a few reactions from last night’s episode from Twitter:

I’m crying ???????????? #TheQueenMzansi

— Jessica Nkosi (@JessicaNkosi) May 6, 2021

Now this is The Queen we were introduce to ku season 1…this episode was ????????????????????????#TheQueenMzansi pic.twitter.com/RXAJXI5oeP

— Zanele Mokoena (@zahMokoena) May 6, 2021

Now that’s the best scene ever on local television ????????????????????????#TheQueenMzansi pic.twitter.com/hBgKaXfMVN

— AbutiNiceTimes???????????? (@Dee_La_Cue) May 6, 2021

I’m sad for Thato but the production team, actors and everyone at Ferguson’s film, you have delivered tonight. #TheQueenMzansi pic.twitter.com/LPXszHplB2

— Mokiry_ (@drdwing) May 6, 2021

This is actually the best episode I’ve ever seen on local television. Job well done ????????????#TheQueenMzansi pic.twitter.com/wf0R07YBFx

— Mokiry_ (@drdwing) May 6, 2021

#TheQueenMzansi this is actually the best scene I’ve seen so far on The queen ???????????????????????? pic.twitter.com/ewCawhUdHw

— S L I E ❤️ (@MSimelaneslie) May 6, 2021

Today’s episode was the Beyoncé of all episodes of The Queen ???????? #TheQueenMzansi pic.twitter.com/eR1MLsauyR

— matebesi sehume (@MatebesiSehume) May 6, 2021

Before yesterdayThe Citizen

HSF head to ConCourt over McBride’s Ipid ousting

May 6th 2021 at 16:10

Last month, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) threw out the Helen Suzman Foundation’s bid to void former Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) head Robert McBride’s ousting in 2019.

But the battle is not over yet. The foundation this week announced it had lodged an application for leave to appeal against the SCA’s decision with the Constitutional Court .

It said the order handed down last month “gives a judicial stamp of approval to a constitutionally impermissible interpretation of the Ipid Act – eroding the independence of Ipid and exposing it to actual or perceived political interference”.

ALSO READ: Suzman Foundation’s application over McBride’s IPID contract dismissed

The drawn-out case dates back to January, 2019, when McBride rushed to the High Court in Pretoria after learning Police Minister Bheki Cele had decided not to renew his contract as Ipid’s executive director, which was set to expire the following month.

He originally wanted an order stating the decision was not Cele’s to make but they ended up reaching a last-minute agreement– later made an order of the court – that Cele could make a recommendation to the police portfolio committee but it would make the decision.

The portfolio committee also decided against the renewal of McBride’s contract and he has since taken up a position with the State Security Agency.

But the foundation, which was admitted as amicus curiae in the original case, says the agreement which set these events in motion should never have been okayed by the high court.

McBride is no longer actively taking part in these proceedings.

However, the foundation argues the Ipid Act does not stipulate whose call it is to extend the executive director’s contract for a second term, stating only that the appointment “is for a term of five years, which is renewable for one additional term only” and that it should actually have been for McBride to decide.

The SCA last month described this interpretation as “illogical”. Suzman foundation director Francis Antonie accused the SCA of “ignoring the constitutionally impermissible manner in which the high court rubber stamped the settlement agreement”.

Moreover, he said, the SCA judgment and order undermines the independence of Ipid and impedes its ability to effectively perform its mandate.

bernadettew@citizen.co.za

‘Why did you fake your mother’s death?’ – Mbalula unfazed by Niehaus lawsuit

May 6th 2021 at 15:17

Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula is unrepentant about his view of Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans (MKMVA) spokesperson Carl Niehaus, again calling him an “unrepentant thug”.

In a Tweet reply to Niehaus on Thursday, Mbalula called the staunch supporter of ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule an “unrepentant thug” and a “self-confessed fraudster”.

You sue me for telling u the truth about yourself unrepentant thug. Self confessed fraudster. How did you lose job at GEP ? Under Mashatile,Why did you fake mothers death? What is your job description at luthuli house?

— |Mr Fix (@MbalulaFikile) May 6, 2021

He has called Niehaus an “unrepentant thug” before, in February. And the “fraudster” label is linked to his past, where he’s accused of defrauding the Gauteng Economic Development Agency (Geda), among others.

On Wednesday, it was revealed that Niehaus is suing Mbalula for R8 million, for calling him a thug and corrupt on Twitter last year.

Niehaus said he was suing Mbalula because he could not get away with insulting people with impunity.

“Minister Mbalula seems to think that he’s got impunity to insult people. He has also insulted minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, minister Lindiwe Sisulu and many others including the secretary-general of the ANC, comrade Ace Magashule.

“I think the time has come for minister Mbalula to be told this is enough.  He will not be left with a situation where he feels he has impunity to insult people as he wishes and there will be consequences. That is why I decided to proceed with this summons,” he said.

ALSO READ: Mbalula alleges ‘Umshini Wami’-singing Supra Mahumapelo ‘formed Cope’

A history of violence

Mbalula and Niehaus have a history of not getting along.

Last October, in a series of tweets, Mbalula defended himself against “thugs” Niehaus and MKMVA leader Kebby Maphatsoe, alleging they were out to get him because he had closed their “milking cow” – the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa).

Back in 2019, Mbalula called Niehaus a “crook” after Niehaus criticised then-head of ANC elections Mbalula for saying President Cyril Ramaphosa’s election as party president in 2017 was a “game changer”.

Niehaus had said: “He [Mbalula] seems to fear much, especially engagement about his blatant opportunism, careerism and lack of respect for his seniors, such as the SG [secretary-general] of the ANC, comrade Ace Magashule. Talk about real cowardice!”

Additional reporting by Thapelo Lekabe

WATCH: Msimanga attacker sorry for spoiling former mayor’s ‘perfect day’

May 6th 2021 at 14:28

The man who attacked Democratic Alliance (DA) Gauteng leader Solly Msimanga has apologised for the “unfortunate misunderstanding” that led to what he describes as a “scuffle”.

The unnamed man, standing alongside the former Tshwane mayor, expressed regret and said there was no monies owed to him by Msimanga – which was the reported cause of the altercation.

WATCH: Gauteng DA leader’s ‘perfect’ day ruined by East Rand beating

Msimanga was assaulted when the man apparently showed up with a group of people, who said they were there to collect items from Msimanga’s cousin’s business.

Msimanga was then attacked after intervening in a spat between his cousin and the man. The unnamed man was then arrested and offered to pay for Msimanga’s medical expenses.

Earlier, the DA condemned the attack on Msimanga.

“The DA condemns this vicious and criminal attack on the provincial leader. Our country’s Constitution asserts the rule of law as a founding provision. If there is a disagreement, whether involving money or not, South Africans should commit to working through the parameters of the law to resolve their differences,” the DA said.

The DA said since this was a personal matter, they would respect Msimanga’s decision on whether to press charges or not.

Watch the unnamed man’s apology below:

Pfizer not in favour of US patent waiver for vaccines

May 6th 2021 at 13:50

Brussels – Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla on Thursday said he was against a US-backed proposal to waive patents on Covid-19 vaccines and that production should be ramped up in existing facilities instead.

In an interview with AFP, Bourla said his company, which developed its vaccine with German firm BioNTech, was “not at all” in favour of the call from the United States to waive patent protections for coronavirus jabs.

ALSO READ: Ramaphosa welcomes US support for Covid-19 vaccine waiver

The widely praised move by the US announced on Wednesday is seen by proponents as a way to boost production in developing countries that so far have received far fewer jabs.

But Bourla, reflecting the pharmaceutical industry’s long held position, insisted patents are not the main roadblocks to more production and that building new plants would be counterproductive.

“We should focus our efforts in what we can build right now, that is enough capacity to produce billions of doses,” he said.

“The problem is that there are no facilities in the world outside the ones that we can build ourselves, that can make mRNA vaccines,” he said, referring to type of Covid vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.

Bourla cautioned firmly against disrupting current operations “with politically motivated announcements.”

“They are empty promises,” he added.

Earlier, BioNTech pointed to issues ranging from the set up of manufacturing sites to the sourcing of raw materials, to the availability of qualified personnel that were holding up the process.

The German government on Thursday also stressed the importance of keeping patent protections intact after the EU said it was open to looking into the idea.

“The protection of intellectual property is a source of innovation and must remain so in the future,” a government spokeswoman said.

Tshwane residents warned: There’s a cheetah on the loose

May 6th 2021 at 13:34

There’s a cheetah loose in Tshwane and the city has warned residents to be on the lookout for the predator, which escaped the Rietvlei Nature Reserve on Tuesday.

It is not clear how the cheetah escaped the reserve but the city suspects the animal may have got out using a hole dug by smaller animals under a fence.

SEE PICS: Woman fights off 4 metre python to save dachshund

“The fence is also electrified and cheetahs in the past never managed to exit the nature reserve. The parameter  is patrolled daily and repairs are done regularly to prevent incidents like this,” the City of Tshwane spokesperson, Selby Bokaba, said in a statement.

A sighting of the cheetah outside the nature reserve was first reported by a nearby landowner, who informed the reserve’s management, the city said.

“The cheetah has a neck collar that sends signals  for tracing purposes. Members of the EWT [Endangered Wildlife Trust] team are in a process to try and  capture the animal. A veterinarian is also standby  to tranquillise the animal,” Bokaba said.

Visitors and members of the public can report sightings of the predator by calling 082-322-5639.

Orlando Pirates bounce back to winning ways with convincing victory over Black Leopards

May 6th 2021 at 13:15

Orlando Pirates bounced back to winning ways after handing relegation threatened Black Leopards a 3-0 drubbing in a DStv Premiership at the Orlando Stadium on Thursday.

This was a good response for the Buccaneers, who came into this game after losing 3-0 to Mamelodi Sundowns and playing to a 1-1 draw with Swallows FC in their last two games.

The victory saw the Soweto giants jump to fourth place on the log standings with 42 points after 25 matches.

Leopards, meanwhile, are stuck at the bottom of the league standings with 18 points from 26 matches. The club is seven points away from safety and with only four games left, they will have to collect maximum points in all of them to at least try to save their top flight status.

In the opening stages of the game, Pirates looked stronger on the right side of their attack, which was operated by Wayde Jooste coming from the back and linking up with Deon Hotto.

It took the hosts 28 minutes to make a real threat at Leopards goals after Jooste’s cross found Tshegofatso Mabasa inside the Leopards box, but the striker failed to convert.

The visitors tried to get themselves into the game as skipper Rodney Ramagalela attempted a long range strike in the 32nd minute, but it didn’t trouble Wayne Sandilands at Bucs goals.

Bucs came closer and closer to scoring towards half-time with chances falling through for Mabasa once again and Thulani Hlatshwayo’s header going wide leaving the two teams to go into the break goalless.

It took only two minutes into the second half for the home side to take the lead after Jooste picked up Mabasa inside the Lidoda Duvha box. The striker didn’t make a mistake this time around as he slotted the ball into the back of the net.

Leopards looked for an immediate response with Rodrick Kabwe on attack, but his lobbed ball which looked goal bound was cleared off the goal-line by Hlatshwayo.

Pirates went on to extend their lead with Mabasa getting a brace in the 67th minute after his initial header hit the upright before he quickly slotted the ball into the net from the rebound.

With four minutes left minutes, substitute Gabadinho Mhango sealed the win for Pirates with the third goal for Bucs as Leopards struggled to fight their way back into the match.

English grounds consider role as IPL stand-in

May 6th 2021 at 12:45

Several Test grounds in England are ready to act as stand-in hosts for the concluding matches of this year’s coronavirus-hit Indian Premier League, according to media reports published Thursday.

The ESPNCricInfo website said MCC and Surrey, in charge of London’s Lord’s and the Oval respectively, together with Warwickshire, based at Birmingham’s Edgbaston, were among clubs who had asked the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to tell the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that they were prepared to stage IPL matches.

Any such fixtures would probably take place in September, towards the end of the 2021 English cricket season.

The IPL, the world’s richest Twenty20 cricket tournament, was suspended on Tuesday following a surge in Covid-19 cases in India, where there have been more than 20 million infections from the virus so far, with just over 222,000 deaths.

ALSO READ: Smith praises BCCI for getting SA IPL players out of India

That decision came a day after two players — Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier — tested positive, forcing a match to be postponed.

Australian cricketers fled India for the Maldives Thursday, but New Zealand’s top stars are stuck in Delhi until May 11, the earliest they can secure exemptions to enter England where they are due to play a Test series.

There are 31 scheduled IPL fixtures still to be played and staging any of them in England would require both BCCI and ECB approval.

Such a move still appears to be a long way off, with an ECB spokesperson telling Britain’s Press Association: “We speak to the BCCI regularly about tours and other matters and we’ll continue doing so, but we have received no indication that they are looking for alternative hosts for the IPL at the moment.”

Last year’s IPL was played behind closed doors in the United Arab Emirates on health grounds.

Resuming the IPL in England, after the conclusion of India’s tour, and at a time when fans are expected to be back at British sports grounds in significant numbers, may be an attractive proposition.

Returning to the UAE might not be an option if it becomes the substitute venue for the T20 World Cup in October, should India no longer be able to stage that event, as grounds there may not be able to cope with such a volume of cricket.

Travel restrictions, however, could make it difficult for IPL support staff to enter the UK even if many leading India players will already be in England because of their tour commitments.

238 suspects arrested in Joburg during police operation

May 6th 2021 at 12:27

A police operation “O Kae Molao” in Gauteng on Thursday resulted in numerous arrests, drugs seizures and disconnection of illegal electricity connections in Mayfair, Fordsburg and Jeppestown.

MEC for community safety, Faith Mazibuko, also joined the team in the anti-crime operation early in the morning to raid some of the crime hotspots in Johannesburg.

While raiding and conducting a stop and search operation, Mazibuko said 238 suspects were arrested for possession of drugs, reckless driving and other crimes.

 

#OkaeMolao is in full swing in Gauteng. pic.twitter.com/GZrjB1Lwf6

— GP Community Safety (@GP_CommSafety) May 6, 2021

Disconnection of illegal electricity connections in Mayfair, Fordsburg & Jeppestown.#WeServeJoburg #SaferJoburg#OkaeMolao pic.twitter.com/2ud9r2ISyY

— Jo’burg Metro Police Department – JMPD (@JoburgMPD) May 6, 2021

ALSO READ: Operation Okae Molao: Man caught with army jacket among 617 suspects arrested in Gauteng

Dagga and Nyaope found on the floor in a taxi. The taxi was stopped at an #OkaeMolao roadblock. Suspects who were close to the packets have been detained for questioning. pic.twitter.com/OHjs6mrn4R

— MEC Faith Mazibuko (@FaithMazibukoSA) May 6, 2021

The arrests were made for the following:

  • Arrests for Contact crime cases
  • Murder: 15
  • Assault GBH: 208
  • Assault Common: 134
  • Assault: 61
  • Rape: 26
  • Sexual Assault: 5
  • Attempted Murder: 4
  • Common robbery: 25
  • Armed robbery: 15
  • House robbery: 18
  • Hijacking: 6

4/4. Arrests for Property related cases
Housebreaking: 21
Business breaking: 10
Theft of motorvehicle: 3
Total: 34

Arrests for CDPA
Poss of drugs- w/arrest: 15
Poss unlicensed fire arm:4
Total: 19

— MEC Faith Mazibuko (@FaithMazibukoSA) May 6, 2021

MPs grill Cyril over ‘senseless’ Covid-19 vaccination plan

May 6th 2021 at 11:57

Government’s “slow” and “senseless” Covid-19 vaccination plan has come under a barrage of criticism from members of Parliament (MPs) during President Cyril Ramaphosa’s question and answer session on Thursday.

ALSO READ: Jets before jabs: Latest SAA bailout takes from Covid-19 vaccines

The president was fielding questions about, among others, the brand and quantity of the Covid-19 vaccines that government had procured thus far, the vaccine price tag, and vaccines approved by the SA Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra).

EFF chief whip Floyd Shavambu said according to their estimate, it would cost a minimum of R50 billion to vaccinate 7% of the population, and that Treasury had allocated R4.3 billion for the entire vaccine rollout.

“The vaccine plan does not make any sense…You are saying you are going to vaccinate 41 million South Africans, when you have only allocated R4.3 billion? And do not tell us about the contingency budget because contingency budgets are allocated for things not foreseen. We have known for more than 12 months about this pandemic that requires intervention,” he charged.

Democratic Alliance (DA) leader John Steenhuisen went for the jugular and asked Ramaphosa if he was going to take responsibility for the lives already lost to Covid-19, saying the ANC was occupied by its own battles when people were dying.

He said other countries were nearly finished with their vaccination programme, while SA had yet to vaccinate a single private citizen, and only managed to vaccinate just over 300,000 healthcare workers in months.

“SA’s current ranking for Covid-19 vaccine administered is 33, not in the world but in Africa. That is after Sierra Leone, Sudan, Somalia and Zambia… Yes people are angry because you have failed them. Do you take responsibility for the life lost due to failure?” Steenhuisen asked.

But the president kept his cool, despite the EFF heckling him and casting aspersions on his legitimacy after the so-called suspension by the suspended secretary genera Ace Magashule.

Ramaphosa said the delays were as a result of protracted negotiations with manufacturers, drug availability and ensuring that contracts with manufacturers were consistent with SA laws.

He said the government would pull out all the stops to provide funding for the vaccination programme, even if it meant Finance Minister Tito Mboweni returning to Parliament to table a supplementary budget.

“We are not going to sacrifice the lives of SA in relation to this pandemic,” Ramaphosa said.

He said they had finalised a contract for the supply of 31 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccines and that, as a continent, through the Africa Vaccine Acquisition Task Team, finalised an agreement for a 220-million doses for the rest of the continent.

He said from Pfizer they had an agreement for 20 million doses, with additional allocation from Covax of nearly 1.4 million Pfizer doses that arrived this week.

ALSO READ: 300,000 Pfizer vaccines arrive in South Africa

“Negotiations with manufacturers were protracted, we also have to ensure terms of contracts were consistent with our laws and not detrimental to the national interest. We also had to set up a no-fault compensation scheme through which those who experience severe adverse results following vaccination can claim damages.

“We have finalised contracts for sufficient doses to vaccinate 41.1 million. The estimated times for the delivery of the vaccines depend on several factors, many of which are beyond our control,” Ramaphosa added.

Vaccine Delivery Schedule:

  • Second quarter (2021): Three million J&J doses, 4.5 million Pfizer doses, and 1.4 million Pfizer doses through the Covax facility.
  • Third quarter: 9.1 million J&J doses, 8.5 million Pfizer doses.
  • Fourth quarter: 19.9 million J&J doses and seven million Pfizer doses.

In total, SA will receive 31.2 million J&J doses and 21.4 million Pfizer doses, including form Covax facility.

siphom@citizen.co.za

Sars’ unit to use high-tech tools, skills to catch rich tax dodgers

May 6th 2021 at 11:32

The SA Revenue Service (Sars) has refused to divulge the composition, size and expertise of its new High Wealth Individual Taxpayer Segment (HWI) unit dedicated to focus on the rich, as this will expose its capacity.

Also read: Sars’ special unit for rich tax-dodgers is long overdue

But spokesperson Siphithi Sibeko said the unit, which has started issuing “welcome” letters to its target group, was made up of high calibre people with skills ranging from special investigations, data capturing, auditing and analysis.

He said the unit would benefit from Sars’ massive recruitment drive, which yielded 88,000 applications, including 7,946 applications from external graduates and 755 chartered accountants out of the total number of applications.

“Currently there are 1,000 high calibre individuals in the unit but we want more specialist expertise because the unit will deal with individuals with highly complex tax arrangements,” Sibeko said.

Also Read: New Sars unit move not a punishment for the rich

He said the unit would work on Sars’ premise that taxpayers are generally honest, but the rich tend to pay teams of lawyers and consultants to structure their tax affairs, which he said might lead to temptation.

Millionaires pay less tax than you and I

“The unit looks at tax affairs not from the guilty point of view. But you find a situation where an individual owns three luxury sports cars and lives in massive houses but they declare R300,000 as their income. They pay less tax than you and I. That is where the unit comes in,” Sibeko said.

He said SA had the most millionaires in Africa, with about 38,400 individuals with a net asset value of more than $1 million (about R14.7 million).

Sibeko said each target taxpayer would be assigned a dedicated manager.

Jean du Toit, head of tax technical, at Tax Consulting South Africa, said a good starting point for the unit is that retired Judge Dennis Davies is involved.

“That is a good start. The unit needs people with experience in auditing and who understand tax law to unravel the complex tax structures of wealthy individuals. These are people with resources to get tax attorneys. So, you need people who understand the law, with practical experience in uncovering certain tax stratagems,” he said.

Du Toit said the unit would most probably use data analytics and artificial intelligence to sniff out tax evaders.

According to tax attorney Jean-Louis Nel, in 2017 when Sars started investigating these high net wealth individuals, the taxman was able to recover an additional R184 million.

siphom@citizen.co.za

AB InBev shows profit despite January booze ban

May 6th 2021 at 11:21

AB InBev at least showed a profit in the first quarter of 2021, although the alcohol ban in January affected its top-line.

The beer giant credits its thorough cost discipline for driving bottom-line growth. Its total volumes grew by 13.3%, with own beer up 14.9% and non-beer up 4%. Its premium portfolio, driven by Corona and its flavoured alcohol beverages, led the way.

In line with changing consumer shopping habits, about 50% of revenue came from online sales. The company’s revenue grew by 17.2% with revenue per hl growth of 3.7%, driven by ongoing premiumisation and revenue management initiatives.

Combined revenues of its global brands, Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona, increased by 29.5% inside and 46.4% outside its home markets.

ALSO READ: Heineken to cut 8,000 jobs as virus takes toll on sales

AB InBev said in a statement the government-mandated one-month ban on alcohol sales affected its business in South Africa significantly, but once the ban was lifted, there was strong underlying consumer demand.

“Volumes declined slightly in the quarter volumes were flat compared to the first quarter of last year in line with the industry. Revenue per hl grew by low single digits, driven by revenue management initiatives and favourable brand mix.”

The first quarter results show that AB InBev’s underlying profit was $1,099 million, compared to $1,015 million in 1Q20. Normalised profit attributable to equity holders was $1,013 million in 1Q21 and $845 million in 1Q20.

“Our business is off to a very strong start in 2021. We delivered top-line ahead of pre-pandemic levels, as beer volumes were up by 2.8% versus 1Q19 with healthy revenue per hl growth. EBITDA increased by 14.2% year-over-year, even in the context of on-going COVID-19 related restrictions,” CEO Carlos Brito said.

ALSO READ: Relaxing booze ban too little too late for SAB plant and workers

New CEO

AB InBev also announced Brito is stepping down after 32 years with the company on 1 July, when Michel Doukeris will succeed him as CEO. “It has been a privilege and an honour to be part of this team of 164,000 around the world. I am very excited about the future of our business under Michel’s leadership,” Brito said.

“We are grateful to Brito for his tremendous service and leadership,” board chairperson Martin Barrington said. “Brito was the architect who led and built AB InBev into the world’s leading beer company and a leading global consumer packaged goods company by masterfully integrating the many businesses that comprise AB InBev today.”

Doukeris has served in key leadership roles in Brazil, China and the US, three of the company’s largest markets. He was president of the North America sone, global chief sales officer, president of the Asia Pacific zone and successfully implemented the company’s first direct-to-consumer e-commerce platform.

Man arrested for ruining Solly Msimanga’s ‘perfect day’

May 6th 2021 at 11:15

The man who assaulted Solly Msimanga in Benoni, claiming monies owed, and ruined the DA Gauteng leader’s “perfect day”, has been arrested.

The man apparently showed up with a group of people, who said they were there to collect items from the cousin’s business. Msimanga was then attacked after intervening in spat between the man and his cousin.

While on video, the man then accused Msimanga, who was on the phone to police, of owing him money.

However, he has since publicly apologised to Msimanga and confirmed that Msimanga does not owe him any money, according to the Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng, in a statement.

“The assailant also offered to pay the medical expenses and other losses Mr Msimanga may have suffered in the process.

“The DA condemns this vicious and criminal attack on the provincial leader. Our country’s Constitution asserts the rule of law as a founding provision. If there is a disagreement, whether involving money or not, South Africans should commit to working through the parameters of the law to resolve their differences,” the DA said.

The DA said since this was a personal matter, they would respect Msimanga’s decision on whether to press charges or not.

Msimanga, before the assault, having a “perfect day”:

Msimanga, after the assault, on the phone with the police:

Former capital city mayor, the honourable Mr Solly Msimanga, beaten to the pulps! pic.twitter.com/hRr8eHm9PZ

— Mantikwe (@Mantikwe3) May 6, 2021

Additional reporting by Rorisang Kgosana

Who are you representing? EFF quizzes Ramaphosa over ANC ‘suspension’

May 6th 2021 at 11:08

President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday was quizzed by the EFF over his “suspension” from the ANC by embattled secretary-general Ace Magashule.

While he was replying to MP’s oral questions in the National Assembly, EFF deputy president and MP Floyd Shivambu, attempted to ask the president about his suspension.

ALSO READ: ‘I’m still the secretary-general’ – defiant Magashule sticks to his guns

However, he was shot down by the deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Lechesa Tsenoli, who said the question was not related to Ramaphosa’s responsibilities as the head of state.

“We are here to listen to the president of the country and so this is what is going to proceed,” Tsenoli said.

But Shivambu insisted his question needed to be addressed in Parliament before the president could respond to MPs’ questions.

“He must clarify who is he representing, is he representing his jacket or a political party because he is not,” he said.

Some ANC MPs could also be heard bashing Shivambu for his point of order and questioned why he was interested in the internal matters of the party.

This followed Magashule’s suspension letter addressed to Ramaphosa that surfaced on Wednesday following his suspension from the ANC due to his corruption trial.

In the letter, dated 3 May 2021, Magashule cited allegations of vote buying involving Ramaphosa’s CR17 ANC presidential campaign and the court case related to the sealing of the campaign’s financial records.

Voters still have confidence in ANC, says Ramaphosa

At the same time, Ramaphosa said the ANC would participate in the coming local government elections in October with a “great deal of enthusiasm”.

Ramaphosa said the ANC’s recent electoral wins in by-elections were an indication that a majority of South Africans still had confidence in the governing party.

This is despite continued infighting and divisions among ANC leaders over the implementation of the party’s step aside resolution.

“The ANC will participate in the forthcoming elections with a great deal of enthusiasm. We get elected to represent the people of our country.

“As you would have seen and this I say with all humility without being arrogant, the majority of our people still have confidence in the ANC,” Ramaphosa said.

He was responding to a supplementary question from National Freedom Party (NFP) MP Shaik Emam, who wanted to know whether the ANC and other political parties that received funds from companies accused of corruption would consider withdrawing from the polls in the interest of “creating a better society”.

“No, we will not, because our people want us to continue addressing their aspirations and fulfilling their dreams, which we continue doing on an ongoing basis. I’m sorry therefore to disappoint you and say we will not withdraw,” Ramaphosa said.

Last week, Ramaphosa admitted to the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture that with hindsight, the ANC would not have knowingly accepted donations from corruption-accused company Bosasa. He was testifying at the commission in his capacity as the leader of the ANC.

Ramaphosa told MPs voters had confidence in the ANC because they could see the party was addressing its past mistakes.

“Those people can see what is happening and they see that the ANC is in a process of renewing itself, rebuilding itself, correcting itself and demonstrating its determination to focus on the interests of our people.

“They themselves are investing confidence in the ANC.”

READ NEXT: Ramaphosa remains ‘very resolute’ to address ANC corruption, says Pandor

24 hours in pictures, 6 May 2021

May 6th 2021 at 11:02

News in pictures

No sign of reopening Charlotte Maxeke Hospital

May 6th 2021 at 10:57

There is still no sign of reopening the Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital three weeks after a fire gutted several sections of the Johannesburg facility.

Patients are apparently still in distress, despite being diverted to other facilities around Gauteng, according to the DA.

After complaints from patients and the public on the lack of coordination in the mammoth task of diverting patients, the Gauteng government has moved to reassure patients that contingency treatment plans had been made.

“We wish to apologise for the inconvenience caused to patients and the community at large and also appreciate the overwhelming support from various quarters”‘ says health department spokesperson Motalatale Modiba.

According to DA shadow MEC for health Jack Bloom, about 150 cancer patients who require radiation therapy have not been adequately catered for.

Also Read:Cancer patients ‘abandoned’ at Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, claims DA

The Gauteng department of health has instructed patients with prior bookings for medical oncology to report Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital on Wednesdays or Fridays.

Those who require haematology treatment should also report to the same hospital’s haematology clinic. The clinic can be found behind the mortuary between Hospital Street and Clinic Street, it said.

“I think it was a very inadequate statement because I am still dealing with very worried patients. They only mention chemo and haematology but they don’t mention radiation treatment. There are 150 cancer patients requiring radiation therapy and probably a high number of patients that still need to be diagnosed. The other problem is of course getting records of patients because of the fire damage,” says Bloom.

Three weeks later, the blaze has also put the government’s ability to fight Covid-19 in jeopardy . The province is now 800 beds poorer and approaching a third wave in the winter months, Bloom adds.

Also Read: Charlotte Maxeke Hospital diverts its major services

Patients are advised to contact the Gauteng Citizens Relationship Management (Hotline) on 0800 22 8827 / 0800 428 8364 or email  hotline@gauteng.gov.za or support@gauteng.gov.za about how they can get access to services that are normally rendered at the hospital.

The department has postponed all elective surgery or procedures for the period of the closure of the hospital. These will have to be re-booked once the facility is operational again. Patients are advised that in case of an emergency they should go to their nearest health facility for assistance.

Caesarean sections and antenatal services have been diverted to Discoverers Community Healthcare Centre a day before the date. All patients who were admitted to Charoltte Mazeke are seen by consultants at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto, Bertha Gxowa Hospital in Germiston and Helen Joseph Hospital in Auckland Park.

Simnikiweh@citizen.co.za

ACDP gets bee in its bonnet over Contralesa’s Ancestors Day

May 6th 2021 at 10:49

The African Christian Democratic Party (ACPD) is upset at a proposal by beer brand Castle Milk Stout, renowned cultural activist and poet laureate Zolani Mkiva and the Congress of Traditional Leaders of SA (Contralesa) to make May 8 Ancestors Day.

Contralesa is calling on South Africans to celebrate and observe African spirituality and its role in our lives through ceremonies and rituals that honour the ancestors.

The inaugural ceremony is set to take place at the Mathibela Royal Palace in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga, where traditional leaders and heritage practitioners will come together under strict Covid-19 protocols to observe the day.

The ACPD on Thursday made calls to boycott the day.

In a statement by leader reverend Kenneth Meshoe the party told its followers to contest the proposed launch.

This nation desperately needs God’s intervention and not dead ancestors.

“Let us use Saturday 8 May 2021 as a day to intensify our prayers to ask our living God to save our souls, deliver us from evil, heal our land, bless and prosper all our people in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour,” said Meshoe.

ALSO READ: ACDP vows to fight gender diversity and education in WC schools

“While we acknowledge that millions of South Africans consult and worship their dead ancestors, committed evangelical Christians know that God’s Word denounces such practices.”

Recently the party has made controversial calls. It last week staged pickets against a draft policy on gender identity and sexual orientation in public schools by the Western Cape education department.

It said that the DA was planning to actively mislead & confuse school children in the Western Cape with its draft regulations on gender identity and gender orientation.

 

Is it a sandal? Is it a boot? What’s up with these furry shoes?

May 6th 2021 at 10:44

What do you get when you combine a Birkenstock sandal and a prehistoric sense of fashion? The furriest sandal you’ve ever seen.

Winter comes with surprises and fashion retailer Woolworths has introduced a hairy trend that has caught the attention of the Knysna fashion  market.

In a hilarious post about the shoes on her page, Evelyn Pepler from Knysna posted the shoes she’d seen, writing: “ This is the real deal! @woolworths in Knysna – where cutting-edge fashion and prehistoric fashion has collided.

“I ask the universe: was this an order that was placed by head office and when it arrived they realised it was a complete mistake and they thought “Ya well no fine…” perfect place to sell these is in Knysna & Sedgefield cause we have forest fairies, hippies, here ?? Or

“Oh, my word these are to die for! this is perfect for our Knysna Kugels – best when paired with the latest faux animal print designer ware…?”

She even added tips on how they could be potentially styled: “Nooit man these are perfect for those crazy mid-season early winter days in Knysna when the temp starts off freezing then becomes farking hot then freezing again?  OR

“The essential missing piece of a fancy dress caveman/woman outfit (obviously we all have one hanging in our dress-up closet)- ready to wear in case anyone throws a Neanderthal themed party – ?”.

Along with grooming tips that potential wearers could implement she said: “Complete this look by growing your toenails and let them overhang the front of the shoes – ☆☆ Pro tip- extra long nails bonus gives you extra grip if you want to run while wearing these freakin awesome shoes!

“Either way, this is the latest must have- wardrobe Essential! Now rush out and get yours before they are all snapped up.”

Absolutely brilliant commentary Evelyn Pepler !! Just had to share ????

Posted by Alison Ann Pichler on Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Additional comments from followers flooded in with some saying they would wear the shoes while others saying a market for people with big toes might be just right.

In a fashion sense, the sandals could be paired with the current trend of faux fur coats or bucket hats seen trending on the urban streets of Johannesburg and sold at stores like Mr Price, Superbalist and online.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Depop (@depop)

Although the furry slides seem to only be exclusive to one retailer, the trend may catch on.

‘Racist’ Agrizzi opposed BEE, controlled Watson’s emails, Zondo told

May 6th 2021 at 10:38

The Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture heard Bosasa-related evidence on Thursday from former Armscor CEO and businessman Kevin Wakeford.

Wakeford was implicated by former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi in the list of individuals who are said to have benefited from Bosasa, now African Global Corporations.

The businessman, who was a consultant to Bosasa for about eight years, allegedly received R100,000 a month for helping Bosasa “resolve” its issues with the South African Revenue Service (Sars).

ALSO READ: Accountants implicated in Agrizzi testimony to be investigated

During the proceedings, Wakeford denied allegations of corruption, describing them as “false”, “vague” and “unsubstantiated”.

He added that the allegations had been deliberately crafted and given to deceive the commission chaired by Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo and there was no evidence to support “these fabrications” .

Watson family ‘deserved awards’

Wakeford also dismissed claims his late friend and former Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson was corrupt and a racist, saying that the narrative played out was not true.

He told the commission Watson and his family “deserved awards” and they treated black people like normal human beings instead of “economic slaves”.

“The Watsons gave white people credibility and legitimacy in this country. It is those people who played township rugby, built companies that were empowering and treated black people as equals, not as economic slaves and subordinates. It is people like that who we should treasure and give national awards to,” he said.

‘Racist’ Agrizzi

Regarding his relationship with self-proclaimed racist Agrizzi, Wakeford said it was tenuous and unproductive from the very start.

Wakeford said he was concerned with Agrizzi’s character and attitude, which he expressed to Watson, since the CEO recommended his appointment.

He said Agrizzi was racist, but hid it for a very long time.

He adds… as a threat to his own relationship with Watson, and the control of the business. #StateCaptureInquiry

— State Capture Commission (@StateCaptureCom) May 6, 2021

An audio clip in which Agrizzi is heard using the K-word was first leaked in 2018.

Agrizzi admitted the slur was said at a meeting at his house between himself and Watson’s family, claiming they coaxed him into saying what he said in the clip, recording it purposefully to discredit him.

READ MORE: Agrizzi maintains he did not murder Gavin Watson

Wakeford told the commission Agrizzi was against Bosasa’s vision of a Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) business, which played a role in the former chief operating officer’s contract being terminated.

“One of the reasons Agrizzi’s contract was terminated included his offensive and racist language towards the black board of directors in Bosasa and his autocratic behaviour and complete disregard for the authority of the board of directors,” he said.

Wakeford also told the commission Agrizzi controlled Watson’s emails, which he denied in a responding affidavit.

Watch the proceedings live below, courtesy of the SABC:

UPDATE: Magashule suspending Ramaphosa is NOT fake news

May 5th 2021 at 18:51

Earlier this evening, many media outlets received a statement that purported that ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule had suspended ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa.

While the statement seemed official, the ANC later said it was fake.

This statement coincided with the leaking of a letter between Magashule and Ramaphosa on Monday, regarding the step-aside resolutions.

ALSO READ: First take: Ace suspends Cyril – what in the actual hell?

The ANC initially told The Citizen the letter from Magashule suspending Ramaphosa was not real.

“In this digital age, anyone can create anything. Any communication about the ANC would have come from us,” ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe told The Citizen. However, Mabe later went on TV to say the opposite and confirmed that the letter was real. An official ANC statement also confirmed it.

Mabe has intimated on Newszoom Afrikathat Magashule is most likely mistaken if he believes he has the power to reinstate himself and suspend Ramaphosa

@MYANC response to the statement by Secretary General Comrade Ace Magashule. pic.twitter.com/yV7KSgOUCG

— African National Congress (@MYANC) May 5, 2021

Parts of the press release stemmed from Magashule’s official letter to Ramaphosa on Monday declaring that his CR17 campaign had been reported to the Serious Offences Directorate of the ANC, where Magashule indicated that Ramaphosa himself should let the party know that Ramaphosa’s suspension would be in the best interests of the party.

Below is the full Wednesday letter from Magashule to Ramaphosa, as released (or leaked).

pic.twitter.com/2FuK6oNyJL

— Ace Magashule (OFFICIAL) (@Magashule_Ace) May 5, 2021

The Citizen initially apologised for the mistake and retracted the article in its entirety, which turned out to be unnecessary.

ALSO READ: Hmmm … Ace Magashule’s little chess picture made the game all too clear

Hmmm … Ace Magashule’s little chess picture made the game all too clear

May 5th 2021 at 18:44

In what turned out to be a crazy night for newsrooms around South Africa, a very authentic-looking letter started doing the rounds appearing to be from suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule to the ANC informing them that he was rejecting his suspension and suspending party president Cyril Ramaphosa instead.

Of course, this appeared ludicrous. And if it was real, it probably would have meant inevitable – and fast – expulsion from the ANC for Magashule.

The ANC’s spokesperson, Pule Mabe, eventually told The Citizen that the letter was fake, but many were left doubting that, too.

Magashule had apparently also denied writing it – but then again he seems so used to denying all the things he’s done by now that it’s just a reflex action.

Then Mabe himself appeared to contradict himself, and his apparent comments to this website, when he went on TV to appear to confirm that the letter – or at least one of two letters doing the rounds – is in fact real.

ANC Secretary-General Ace Magashule has written a letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa. It comes after the party suspended him earlier today. To talk more on Thabo Mdluli is joined by ANC spokesperson, Pule Mabe.

Watch: https://t.co/xSVHUmWej5 pic.twitter.com/YTt9gb484C

— Newzroom Afrika (@Newzroom405) May 5, 2021

Pule Mabe just confirmed now on newzroom afrika 405 that the letter is NOT Fake.

"office of the DSG and the office of the president has received the letters from the office of the SG"

The letter is from Ace Magashule and it is NOT fake.
????????????????

— Marxist (@Kgomo389) May 5, 2021

An official ANC statement also appeared to acknowledge the veracity of the letter and that they would respond to it over the weekend.

@MYANC response to the statement by Secretary General Comrade Ace Magashule. pic.twitter.com/yV7KSgOUCG

— African National Congress (@MYANC) May 5, 2021

Of course, it would have been quite bonkers for Magashule to have written that thing, and even more crazy to write it and then deny writing it, but I couldn’t help but remember that he’s done this kind of gaslighting to South Africa before, on Twitter, in 2019, when the ANC was arguing with itself about whether to privatise the SA Reserve Bank and/or change its mandate.

Back then, Magashule tried to convince the country that a “fake tweet” was “doing the rounds alleged to be from my account”. The only problem was that Magashule was in all probability simply flat-out lying, which his journalistic nemesis Pieter-Louis Myburgh was quick to point out.

READ THAT OLD STORY HERE: Zuma ‘reminds’ ANC what they ‘resolved’ about the Reserve Bank at Nasrec

A fake tweet! You mean this tweet that was deleted? pic.twitter.com/U1mIVmaKie

— Pieter Du Toit (@PieterDuToit) June 6, 2019

The “fake tweet” had indeed appeared on Magashule’s official account, presumably written by Magashule himself, before being deleted and disavowed. It had been all too real, and I suspect that Magashule knew that we all knew the truth, and it was all part of Magashule’s little game of moves and countermoves to wrest power in the ANC from Ramaphosa and his faction.

Similarly, when Magashule shared a picture of himself playing chess late on Wednesday night after supposedly denying to someone somewhere that he had had a hand in the “fake statement” attributed to him and the office he’s now been unceremoniously sent home from, all I could think was: hmmm, no. It didn’t take long for that doubt to be proven well placed.

pic.twitter.com/2FuK6oNyJL

— Ace Magashule (OFFICIAL) (@Magashule_Ace) May 5, 2021

But nothing would surprise me about the ANC any more, and especially not when it comes to Magashule. Because in the process of trying to chew off and amputate the parts of itself it no longer likes, it may just be eating itself alive.

First take: Ace suspends Cyril – what in the actual hell?

May 5th 2021 at 17:42

Earlier this week I said you’d better get some popcorn going because Ace Magashule was going to make his suspension a little more difficult than imagined.

And, wow, the show has not been disappointing.

Mere hours after the ruling party formally announced that its secretary-general was suspended, a statement, apparently from Magashule – on official stationery – said that not only was his suspension by deputy Jesse Duarte unlawful, but that he in turn “summarily suspended” ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa.

This statement was subsequently dismissed by the ANC a few hours later, but not before some damage had been done.

It would be unwise to categorically state that the fake statement stemmed directly from the Magashule camp.

But, to dismiss the power of fake statements – which are sent to journalists in these unsure times – by people who have a lot to lose, would be foolish.

We learnt a lot during the Gupta’s Bell Pottinger days. And, we thought we knew how to spot the manipulation for the most part.

But, it seems, we – as the media and society at large – have not completely realised the extent to which the bad guys will go to subvert the truth or muddy the waters.

Ace Magashule, innocent or not, is a test case.

One of the most senior ANC officials is standing trial for corruption (on one specific charge some might say). And, there are many, many more officials down the food chain who are most definitely as corrupt as the day is long, fearing their day in court.

The way he is behaving is setting the scene. And so are many of those who have something to lose when Ace loses… muddying the waters along the way…

Hendri Pelser

Hendri Pelser, Acting Digital Editor at The Citizen. Picture: Michel Bega

WATCH: French journalist held by jihadists pleads for release

May 5th 2021 at 15:58

Bamako – A missing French journalist said he was kidnapped in Mali by a jihadist group with links to Al-Qaeda, according to a video circulating on social media Wednesday, the latest foreigner to be taken hostage in the West African country.

The video of Olivier Dubois, who worked with several French media, could not be immediately verified independently, although Reporters Without Borders (RSF) and the French government confirmed he was missing.

In the undated video, which lasts about 20 seconds, Dubois, 46, said he was abducted on April 8 in Gao, northern Mali, by the Group to Support Islam and Muslims (GSIM), the biggest jihadist alliance in the Sahel.

ALSO READ: Mozambique town remains traumatised weeks after jihadist attack

He is seen seated on the ground on a green sheet, in what could be a tent, dressed in a light pink traditional gown, with his beard trimmed.

Speaking in a firm voice, he asks his family, friends and the French government “to do everything in their power to get me released”.

French government spokesman Gabriel Attal confirmed Dubois’ disappearance in Mali. “I want to immediately send my thoughts to him, his family and all the publications he usually works with,” he said.

Christophe Deloire, the general secretary of media watchdog RSF, tweeted that the journalist had been reporting in Gao, but went missing on April 8.

“This experienced journalist, who usually works for Le Point Afrique and Liberation, knows this highly dangerous region well,” he said.

Deloire added: “We were informed two days after his disappearance. In consultation with the editors he usually worked for, we took the decision to not to make this abduction public, in order not to hamper any swift positive outcome.”

He urged the Malian and French authorities “to do everything to secure his freedom”.

‘Other side of the mirror’

Dubois had been writing regularly for Liberation, a left-of-centre daily, since April last year.

In a statement published on its website, the newspaper said that Dubois “now finds himself on the other side of the mirror, himself a captive.”

It said Dubois had travelled to Gao to interview a jihadist leader. He disappeared after leaving his hotel on April 8, the statement said.

ALSO READ: Nigeria kidnap kingpin killed in clash with rival gang

“Two days later, he did not board the return flight to Bamako,” it said, referring to Mali’s capital.

A French foreign ministry official said that the government is in contact with Dubois’ family and the Malian authorities.

“We are carrying out the usual technical verifications (of the video),” the official added.

A French expert on jihadist propaganda, who declined to be named, said that the video surfaced on an Al-Qaeda-affiliated Telegram channel called Wareeth al-Qassam on Wednesday morning.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the kidnapping, however.

Troubled Sahel

Mali has been struggling to contain an Islamist insurgency which first broke out in the north of the country in 2012 before spreading to the centre and neighbouring Burkina Faso and Niger.

Thousands of people have been killed and hundreds of thousands have fled their homes, while the economic impact on one of the world’s poorest countries has been devastating.

Abductions have been frequent, both of Malians and foreigners.

The last French hostage was Sophie Petronin, an aid worker in her 70s, who was freed in October last year along with Malian politician Soumaila Cisse, who has since died, and Italians Nicola Chiacchio and Pier Luigi Maccalli.

There has been consistent speculation that a ransom was paid for the four hostages, which has never been confirmed by the Malian government, along with the release of 200 prisoners, some of whom were jihadists.

In October, Switzerland was informed that the GSIM had killed an evangelical missionary who had been kidnapped in Timbuktu in January 2016.

In March, the Swiss foreign ministry said the woman’s body had been recovered and formally identified.

The shadowy GSIM group operates largely out of Mali, but fears are growing that its fighters are seeking to expand regionally.

Serge Daniel

Lotto and Lotto Plus results: Wednesday, 5 May 2021

May 5th 2021 at 15:00
  • The Lotto jackpot was estimated at R3 million
  • The Lotto Plus 1 jackpot was estimated at R6 million
  • The Lotto Plus 2 jackpot was estimated at R2 million

Make your dreams come true by playing the National Lotto. PHANDA, PUSHA, PLAY!

The Lotto results are published as soon as possible after the draw and confirmation, guaranteeing the quickest and easiest way for you to check your ticket.

While great care has been taken to ensure accuracy, The Citizen can take no responsibility for any error in the results and suggest verifying the numbers on the National Lotto website.

Here are the Lotto and Lotto Plus results for Wednesday, 5 May 2021: 

Lotto: 6, 14, 19, 28, 32, 31,  Bonus: 39

Lotto Plus 1: 4, 8, 10, 14, 19 30 Bonus: 27

Lotto Plus 2: 3, 8, 28, 35, 41, 44 Bonus: 23

Check out previous Lotto results here. For more details and to verify the numbers, visit the National Lottery website.

When do South African national Lottery ticket sales close? 

Lottery outlets close at 8.30pm on the day of a draw which happens at 9pm. The terms and conditions may differ from other service outlets. Visit www.nationallottery.co.za for more information.

How much do I need to play Lotto?

Lotto entries cost R5 per board including VAT, with Lotto Plus 1 and 2 each costing an additional R2.50 per board. There are also other ways to play Lotto, including through your mobile and even through certain participating banks (T&Cs apply).

Visit www.nationallottery.co.za and go to the How to Play section to find out more.

Ramaphosa, Magashule face off in Limpopo

May 5th 2021 at 13:54

The gloves have come off between supporters of suspended ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule and President Cyril Ramaphosa ahead of the Limpopo ANC regional elective conferences.

The ANC in Limpopo announced last month three of its biggest regions will host their respective elective conferences soon.

The regions were Norman Mashabane, with 129 branches, Vhembe, with 127, and Sekhukhune, with 118.

But the main contest is in the Vhembe region, where Ramaphosa and Magashule’s backers are sweating it out for the top position on the regional executive committee.

ALSO READ: ANC suspends defiant Ace Magashule

The region is known for two things – the base of the controversial VBS Mutual Bank and as the ancestral home of Soweto-born Ramaphosa.

The Vhembe district municipality invested R300 million in VBS, a move that saw the region divided down the middle in ensuing factional battles.

The Ramaphosa faction was led by ANC Limpopo provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane, while the Magashule camp was under treasurer Danny Msiza, who is facing a step-aside order.

Battling for control of the region are Msiza’s foot soldier Makonde Mathivha and Lekganyane’s supporter Dowelani Nenguda.

Mathivha is former municipal manager for Thulamela local municipality, while Nenguda is Vhembe’s executive mayor.

ANC regional secretary Anderson Mudunungu said Vhembe will hold its conference before the end of this month. But he would not comment on the nomination processes, except to say: “Nomination processes of the ANC remain exactly that, of the ANC. It is not open for public consumption.”

But an executive committee member, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals, said the wrangle for the control of the agricultural region would be a “walk in the park” for Nenguda.

“We are already smiling from ear to ear. This is a conference of numbers and we already have those numbers,” she said.

“Nenguda is just a rare breed we always wanted in the ANC.

“You will recall that two South African Municipal Workers’ Union members were recently assassinated in this region. Since then, it became sharply divided.

“It is Nenguda who has the rare miraculous political will to make sure their lives did not go in vain.”

She said Nenguda already had numbers both in the Makhado and Musina sub-regions. Makhado has 38 branches and only 12 successfully made it to the branch general meetings.

Nenguda won eight and the remaining four nominated in favour of Mathivha.

Tshwane lawyer slapped with costs after trying to sue The Citizen

May 5th 2021 at 13:35

A Tshwane attorney got more than he bargained for when he tried suing the press over an expose linking him and his firm to shady lottery grants, only for the court to throw the case out and slap him with the legal costs the titles he hauled to court, including The Citizen, racked up as a result.

Now not only are his assets at risk of being sold to foot the R93,000 bill, he is also staring at a renewed bid to potentially get him disbarred over fraud allegations.

ALSO READ: GroundUp takes lawyers’ council to court

In April 2019, the High Court in Pretoria dismissed an urgent application that Lesley Ramulifho, of Ramulifho Inc, brought against GroundUp, The Citizen and The Daily Dispatch aimed at the removal of articles detailing how he allegedly hijacked HIV non-governmental organisation Denzhe Primary Care and used funding the National Lotteries Commission had doled out to buy, among others, two Ocean Basket franchises.

Ramulifho said this was a “loan” which he has since repaid.

The court found the case was not urgent and ordered Ramulifho to pay the “wasted” costs the media houses incurred.

But with a R93,086.84 bill still outstanding, the sheriff last month moved to attach moveable property at Ramulifho’s offices.

And his legal woes are stacking up: the Legal Practice Centre (LPC) last year dismissed a misconduct complaint GroundUp lodged against him accusing him of having used forged documents to try and win his case and an appeal bid.

SEE PICS: Lotto boss living his best life, while on suspension with R270k a month salary

GroundUp has now turned to the High Court in Johannesburg in a bid to get a judge to set aside the LPC’s decisions and reconsider the complaint.

GroundUp editor Nathan Geffen, in founding papers filed last week, argued the process followed wasn’t in line with the Legal Process Act and was irrational; that the decisions reached were “substantively irrational and unreasonable” and “based on material error of law”.

LPC spokesman Sthembiso Mnisi on Wednesday confirmed the case had been filed.

In his urgent application, Ramulifho accused the press of damaging his reputation, which affected his business “drastically”.

bernadettew@citizen.co.za

Abantu Bemthetho ‘arrest’ Richards Bay’s progress

May 5th 2021 at 13:19

TS Sporting have climbed closer to and put more pressure on GladAfrica Championship log leaders Richards Bay by beating them 1-0 at KaBokweni Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

It was a tense game and the home side knew a loss would make it even steeper for them as the race heats up. Abantu Bemthetho remain third but are now just two points behind the Natal Rich Boyz with three games to go.

Sporting took the first stab in the 16th minute with Decide Chauke allowed space and time inside the Richards Bay box. With his back to goal, he did well to bring the ball under control, turn and shoot it beyond Malcolm Jacobs’ reach.

The Natal Rich Boyz tried to hit back, with Khanyisa Mayo a constant threat with his signature curled long range shots, but he couldn’t get them on target.

It was in fact Abantu Bemthetho who almost doubled their lead early in the second half. But Jacobs was equal to the task.

Bay’s best chance of the match came only in the 75th minute, and it fell to Lwandile Mabuya who had just come on. The youngster hurried his shot and it went wide.

Siyabonga Vilane also came close to finding an equaliser in the 84th minute but his header went nuts over the bar, with the keeper well beaten.

A minute later, things almost got worse for the KwaZulu-Natal side and were lucky that Mohau Mokate’s well taken hit the post after it had beat Jacobs.

GladAfrica Championship results:

Cape United 1 Polokwane City 0
Free State Stars 1 Steenberg United 1
Uthongathi 1 University of Pretoria 0
Bizana Pondo Chiefs 2 CT All Stars 3
TS Sporting 1 Richards Bay 0
Pretoria Callies 1 Sekhukhune United 2

Trump calls online bans, including Facebook’s, ‘total disgrace’

May 5th 2021 at 13:04

Donald Trump said Wednesday it was a “total disgrace” for online giants to institute social media bans, after a Facebook board upheld the company’s restriction against the former US president which he argued infringed on his free speech.

“What Facebook, Twitter, and Google have done is a total disgrace and an embarrassment to our country,” Trump said in a statement.

“Free Speech has been taken away from the president of the United States because the radical left lunatics are afraid of the truth, but the truth will come out anyway, bigger and stronger than ever before,” the Republican former leader said.

“The people of our country will not stand for it! These corrupt social media companies must pay a political price, and must never again be allowed to destroy and decimate our electoral process.”

Trump, who has been mostly ensconced in his private Mar-a-Lago club in Florida since leaving the White House on January 20, has continued to peddle his false claim that voter fraud caused his defeat in last year’s election.

But he has also latched on to the largely Republican argument that big tech firms support Democratic politicians and have undue influence over political speech.

Republican lawmakers have threatened to go after the technology giants if Trump’s party regains a majority in Congress in the next midterm election, set for 2022.

“If they can ban president Trump, all conservative voices could be next,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy tweeted.

“A House Republican majority will rein in big tech power over our speech.”

‘It happens every day’: Leo Prinsloo’s life of hits and horrors

May 5th 2021 at 12:59

While the country continues to celebrate (and meme) cash-in-transit escort driver Leo Prinsloo for evading a series of live bullets while foiling an attempted heist, he insists he was just doing his job, during which he sees about six to seven similar incidents per week.

The gutsy Prinsloo grabbed international attention this week, after a leaked video showing the tough guy dodging a string of bullets in his armoured Toyota Land Cruiser on the N4 in Pretoria, after the vehicle he and his partner were escorting came under attack.

WATCH: How Leo Prinsloo literally drove into and chased the highway robbers

In the process, Prinsloo relentlessly tried to crash his vehicle into the robbers, successfully ramming one of their vehicles off the road. He and his colleague Lloyd Mtombeni were escorting a vehicle carrying cellphones when they were shot at more than 30 times.

Just doing his job

Despite Prinsloo garnering plenty of praise for his “badass” actions, he apparently felt the attention was unnecessary as he was simply doing his job, said Deon Coetzee, managing director of Fortis Pro-Active Defence Solutions, where Prinsloo works.

Coetzee told The Citizen that similar attacks happened at least six or seven times per week, with four attacks recorded on the same day as the one which has now gone viral.

“South Africa has become a haven for all kinds of gangs. We have all sorts of things… Sadly, there is about a 40% to 50% success rate of stopping these things – meaning we are losing these people,” he said.

Prinsloo under protection due to death threats

Prinsloo and his family have since been placed under protective guard, as he has been receiving death threats, Coetzee said.

“We are keeping everything serious but there is organised crime involved in this so … Any gang who can, at this stage, take out Leo would score ‘street cred’ with all other gangs. The video should never have been leaked in the beginning and showing the inside of the vehicle,” said Coetzee.

Coetzee said Prinsloo regrets the big fuss being made about him, considering how many other operators face similar dangers every day.

“His biggest gripe is ‘I was just doing what all these guys are doing daily but they want to make a hype about me.’ So many of us are doing this. I don’t know why. It’s a calling,” Coetzee said.

The cash in transit escort drivers name is Leo Prinsloo. Ex South African Special Police taskforce member / sniper. He rammed and chased one of the Audi’s into a hotel carpark. Suspects ran into McDonalds. 2 x AK47’s recovered. Lucky for them they got away. pic.twitter.com/2pqHnym2LY

— Tas Prospecting (@TasProspecting) May 1, 2021

Supreme Court of Appeal calls fugitive Bobroffs ‘thieves’

May 4th 2021 at 16:02

Fugitive father and son former lawyers Ronald and Darren Bobroff were this week deprived of approximately R95 million, which the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) found to be “proceeds of unlawful activities”.

The money was frozen by the Israeli authorities after Israeli banks noticed suspicious activity. In deciding whether the money ought to be forfeited to the South African government, the SCA took into account the explanations given by the Bobroffs for the source of the money. Of the approximately R103 million that had been identified as suspicious, they have only been allowed to keep R7.8 million.

Warrants of arrest had been issued or the Bobroffs on March 14, 2016 and they fled the country a few days later. Interpol Red Notices were then issued. In March 2017 Ronald Bobroff tried to withdraw $830,000 from Bank Discount in Israel. Being aware of the Interpol Red Notices, the Israel National Police froze Bobroff’s funds.

ALSO READ: Some of Bobroffs’ stolen millions will be coming back to SA

The SCA was mindful of the purpose for which the Prevention of Organised Crime Act was passed, and held that the act “recognises the rapid growth of organised crime and money laundering, nationally and internationally”.

It continued: “It records that ‘no person should benefit from the fruits of unlawful activities’, and that legislation is necessary to provide for a civil remedy for the preservation, seizure and forfeiture of property which is derived from unlawful activities … [and that] in the context of the known developments worldwide in relation to transnational crime, [its aim] is to strip offenders of the proceeds of their crime wherever they may retain it.”

Arguments

The first pillar of the argument presented by the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) was predicated on the use of illegal contingency fee agreements and the overcharging of clients.

The Bobroffs contended that they never “intentionally or fraudulently entered into such agreements, and did not do so after a February 2014 Constitutional Court judgment confirmed the legal position regarding contingency fee agreements”.

Significantly, the court found that they “did not repay their ill-gotten gains to their erstwhile clients after the final judgment”.

The second pillar was based on the whistleblower affidavit of former bookkeeper at Ronald Bobroff & Partners, Bernadine van Wyk.

The court, in vindicating Van Wyk, found that Darren Bobroff “manufactured false final accounts to bring the files up to date and to hide the incorrect accounting on the files”.

“In this regard, she noted that in many instances the firm had appropriated more than what they were entitled to as fees, and fictitious disbursements had been created and deducted.”

The court also found that when Darren Bobroff had completed these fictitious financial accounts, he instructed Van Wyk to pass the relevant entries so that the ledger would correlate with the account. This, she stated, necessitated countless reversals of fictitious disbursements.

It also found that this course of conduct was not limited to Darren Bobroff. In respect of certain files that were dealt with by Ronald Bobroff: “The file notes evidencing time spent on various attendances, Ms van Wyk said, were fabricated and all financial information was removed from the files. Two control files, containing all the material which had been removed, were retained at the home of Ronald Bobroff, while the sanitised versions were presented.”

‘Standard instruction’

The SCA also found that “it was a standard instruction from Darren Bobroff to ‘take R15 000 to disbursements. No VAT’ in respect of each file. When she queried the instruction, she was told by him that the auditor of the firm had ‘okayed it’. These ‘disbursements’ bore no relation to any actual expenses.”

It is this R15 000 that was charged – on Ronald Bobroff’s version – to at least 6 000 clients over a four-year period that accounts for R90 million of the ill-gotten gains.

Pertinently, the court found that the Bobroffs, although experienced attorneys “well acquainted with the demands of litigation”, chose not “to engage with the damaging allegations of dishonesty and theft and fraud levelled against them”.

The hallmarks of money laundering

The judgment sets out in some detail how the Bobroffs opened fictitious trust accounts to hold surplus funds and also how they had, during their overseas travels over the years, “opened and closed numerous accounts for the reason that they had been advised by the banks that it was a simple matter for banking authorities in South Africa to determine whether the travellers’ cheques had been deposited into international bank accounts, and to then take steps to attempt to attach the credit amounts”.

“The purpose of the exercise was accordingly to disguise the origin and identity of the money.”

The court pointedly found that: “This practice bore all the hallmarks of money laundering.”

Darren’s sudden wealth

The Bobroffs offered no acceptable explanation for the source of Darren’s funds. Judge Johan Eksteen noted that “the unsubstantiated suggestion that it represented the surplus earnings of a junior attorney does not commend itself”.

The court found that neither Ronald nor Darren Bobroff were able to provide any plausible explanation for the source of all the funds in the Israeli bank accounts and, similarly, neither was able to provide any detail as to when any bank accounts had been opened or closed and what had happened to the proceeds in those accounts. Of the explanations proffered, these only reasonably accounted for just over 7.5% of the total.

“The source and movement of the funds in the various accounts fall within the exclusive knowledge of Darren Bobroff. His explanation, such as it is, falls woefully short in numerous respects of that which one might reasonably expect of him.

“No explanation was proffered for the very considerable amounts deposited into the account at Bank Leumi during 2010 to 2013, nor the substantial movement of funds from the account. This comes in the face of allegations of significant financial impropriety on his part at the firm during this period, which remained entirely unanswered, and the less than satisfactory explanations relating to the ‘Zunelle accounts’.”

The SCA has ordered that approximately R95 million be repatriated from the Israeli bank accounts and paid into the Criminal Assets Recovery Account at the South African Reserve Bank.

The Bobroffs were also ordered to pay the NDPP’s legal costs.

This article first appeared on Moneyweb

SA to limit flights from India over variant fears

May 4th 2021 at 15:38

Despite an adverse impact on tourism, South Africa could soon be limiting flights from India, enforcing compulsory testing and quarantining travellers, among measures in response to the B.1.617 Covid-19 variant, the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) warned on Tuesday.

ALSO READ: Covid-19: Crew on ship from India test positive in Durban

With India having become the global pandemic epicentre, over 300,000 new Covid-19 cases are being reported daily, with thousands of deaths, largely driven by the B.1.617 variant.

While Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has called for calm, the health department and local scientific research entities have been on high alert after a patient who recently travelled from India to SA tested positive for Covid-19.

NICD acting executive director, Professor Adrian Puren, said he expected government to make an announcement on how best to manage the risk.

“We have identified a potential case and we have the necessary tools for surveillance… and systems for tracing contacts, testing and quarantining are in place.

“Nevertheless, we should be vigilant and encourage communities to adhere to the interventions that prevent the spread – such as wearing of masks correctly, physical distancing, avoiding crowded and unventilated areas.”

Puren added that the variant initially identified in India was regarded as “a variant of concern”, which harbours mutations linked to increased transmissibility and evasion of the immune system.

“It certainly has been associated with the significant increase in cases in India. But it is not always easy when there are other factors that could explain the second wave in India,” said Puren.

Dr Nathi Mdladla, associate professor and chief of intensive care unit at the Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital, said: “Putting restrictions on travelling to and from India should be a priority until their current wave abates.”

brians@citizen.co.za

ANC KZN deputy chair Mike Mabuyakhulu takes the plunge

May 4th 2021 at 15:26

The deputy chairperson of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, Mike Mabuyakhulu, has stepped aside.

On Tuesday, the party’s national working committee (NWC) said members charged with corruption or other serious crimes must be suspended if they did not step aside from their positions.

In a letter sent to the office of the provincial secretary of the ANC in KZN, Mabuyakhulu said the decision to step aside stemmed from the principles of the ANC which indicated party leaders must be disciplined and the organisation’s constitution upheld.

ALSO READ: Ace Magashule must step aside or be suspended

“In line with the position adopted by our movement, I hereby respectfully tender to the office of the provincial secretary that I am stepping aside from my position as the provincial deputy chairperson of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, with immediate effect as I hereby do.

“I must indicate that it has not been difficult for me to arrive at this decision, because I have done so before,” he added.

Mabuyakhulu said it was common cause that delegates to the 2018 provincial conference elected him to the position knowing fully at the time he had pending legal matters.

“As you are well aware, I was elected by the delegates of the ANC at the 2018 KwaZulu-Natal ANC provincial conference to the position of the provincial deputy chairperson of our glorious movement.

“As a disciplined member of the ANC, I accepted both the nomination as well as the subsequent election to this position because I sincerely believed that as part of the provincial leadership collective I could contribute meaningfully to the attainment of the ultimate objectives of the national democratic revolution.

ALSO READ: Coming soon: ANC vs ANC in court over step-aside rules

He said he accepted the nomination and election because he still believed he would be cleared of any wrongdoing by a competent court of law.

“I presume they did so for two reasons. The first reason is that the branches of our movement wanted to elect the leadership collective that would work tirelessly to renew and unite the ANC following the challenges we had before and after the 2015 provincial conference.

“They respected the principle enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, that everyone charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty,” Mabuyakhulu said.

The party’s national executive committee is expected to issue a comprehensive statement on all members who have been asked to step aside after convening its meeting over the weekend.

Pule Letshwiti-Jones

PowerBall results: Tuesday, 4 May 2021

May 4th 2021 at 15:00

Get the PowerBall and PowerBall Plus results as soon as they are drawn on The Citizen, so you can rest easy and check your tickets with confidence.

While great care has been taken to ensure accuracy, The Citizen cannot take responsibility for any error in the PowerBall or PowerBall Plus results. We suggest verifying the numbers on the National Lottery website.

Here are the winning PowerBall results for Tuesday, 4 May 2021:

PowerBall: 3, 9, 17, 25, 39 Powerball: 13

Here are the winning PowerBall Plus results for Tuesday, 4 May 2021:

PowerBall Plus: 2, 7, 11, 14, 38 Powerball: 2

For more details and to verify the PowerBall results, visit the National Lottery website.

When do South African national Lottery ticket sales close? 

Lottery outlets close at 8.30pm on the day of a draw, which happens at 9pm. The terms and conditions may differ from other service outlets. Visit www.nationallottery.co.za for more information.

Click here for previous winning numbers.

How much does it cost to play PowerBall?

PowerBall entries cost R5 per board including VAT. PowerBall Plus costs an additional R2.50 per board. You can also play PowerBall on selected banking apps (T’s & C’s apply).

Visit www.nationallottery.co.za and go to the How to Play section to find out more.

Covid-19: Crew on ship from India test positive in Durban

May 4th 2021 at 14:02

Transnet National Ports Authority has confirmed that 14 crew members of a vessel, the Eaubonne, which is currently docked at the Port of Durban after sailing from India, have tested positive for Covid-19.

This after the vessel’s chief engineer died due to a heart attack.

“Upon arrival at the Port of Durban, as a standard precautionary measure, all crew members were tested and 14 of the crew tested positive for Covid-19.

ALSO READ: SA at risk of Covid-19 disaster similar to that of India – experts

“The entire vessel is currently in quarantine at the Port of Durban, as per Covid-19 regulations. As part of Covid-19 protocols, the crew contact tracking and tracing  is being undertaken,” Transnet said in a statement.

The Filipino-crewed vessel docked in Durban on Sunday after a 17-day voyage from India and it is under lockdown. Port Health assigned a team to go on board and check on the crew members, according to Transnet.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize on Tuesday noted the concern around Covid-19 cases at South Africa’s ports of entry and the “possible recent importation of variants”.

“Our teams remain on high alert to survey, detect and contain spread of Covid-19 in general, with heightened awareness of travellers from countries where VOCs [variants of concern] are dominating.

“We confirm that the B.1.617 variant, circulating widely in India, has not been detected, however the genomics teams are working on some samples and we will need to allow the time it takes to sequence before we get an answer,” Mkhize said.

Durban

On Monday, Netcare revealed that a person who travelled from India had tested positive for the Covid-19 virus in Durban.

However, health teams were still testing whether the person had been infected with the virus variant currently spreading in India.

Gqebherha

Mkhize also revealed that 14 crew members of a vessel docked in Gqebherha were currently in isolation after testing positive for Covid-19 last week.

“On 25 April 2021 a vessel that had departed from Mombasa, Kenya, berthed in Gqeberha some 12 days after departure.

ALSO READ: Covid-afflicted man who went to work rightfully dismissed, says court

“The following day the shipmaster reported an ill crew member, who was immediately transferred out of the ship to a health care facility. The ill crew member together with three other crew members who were due to depart by air to their home country were immediately subjected to PCR [polymerase chain reaction] tests on the 26 April 2021.

“A further ten crew members have been detected with Covid- 19 and are isolating for 10 days at designated facilities,” Mkhize said.

The minister stated that this ship was bound for India and had not departed from the subcontinent.

 

 

Tales from a hospital bed: Learning to be my own nurse

May 4th 2021 at 13:40

Wesley’s blog: Tuesday, 4 May

Day 12

Since I arrived I’ve met numerous people who have been at this hospital for three or four months.

The reality is that the staff are overwhelmed by the never-ending flow of patients, a lack of resources and an emergency list that is growing by the day. As patients, we are therefore left with frustrated nurses who must prioritise their limited time, and lots of things slip through the cracks.

ALSO READ: Tales from a hospital bed: Dreaming of Wayde, while stuck to a drip

Hundreds of people in this facility are relying on this broken system and the result is that many of them lie here suffering indefinitely. Some of them will leave with life-long disabilities which could have been avoided if the system worked.

And I realise the only way forward for me is to be more independent.

The vacuum which operates the drain in my cast was leaking. But in a place like this, it is simply not as much of a priority for the nurses as it is for me. So I made a plan, taking a lanyard from my bag and sealing the hole. And it worked!

After watching me celebrate my ingenuity, Frans showed me how to adjust the settings and now I operate the thing myself.

Yesterday I was supposed to go for x-rays, but I fell through a crack and the staff didn’t take me as planned.

So this morning I got a note from one of the doctors, found the x-ray room and got the x-rays. Tomorrow I will be ready for my assessment with the surgeon.

ALSO READ: Tales from a hospital bed: Why you shouldn’t go fishing

This isn’t the way it’s supposed to work.

I shouldn’t be fixing medical equipment using makeshift solutions and the staff are supposed to ensure my x-rays are ready when the surgeon arrives.

But if I lie here complaining about a broken system, I will end up having at least a part of my foot amputated.

And if I rely on our government to fix this problem by providing the resources the hospital needs, I could be waiting forever.

I’m not a priority for them, but I can make myself a priority to me.

That’s how you leave this place in one piece.

10-man Chiefs pay the penalty as Mnyamane grabs last minute winner for TTM

May 4th 2021 at 13:33

A last minute penalty by Thabo Mnyamane saved Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila blushes after they almost let a 10-men Kaizer Chiefs steal a point in their DStv Premiership match at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Tuesday evening.

Having taken the lead immediately after Amakhosi were reduced to 10 men, Tshakhuma failed to keep the momentum and allowed the Naturena side to score an equaliser.

They however managed to get a win through a last minute penalty, and the win saw them jump to 14th place, pushing their Nedbank Cup final opponent, Chippa United into the relegation spot.

The game started in a hurried pace with each side looking for an early goal to upset and unsettle the other. But that didn’t help ether side because they couldn’t create any clear scoring chances.

As the game wore on, Chiefs showered the pace and tried to play patient build-ups but still couldn’t find the right balls up front to trouble Washington Arubi in the TTM goals.

As usual, Chiefs were again forced into a shape change in the first half – it was however not due an injury this time.
Njabulo Blom was sent off after receiving his second booking for reckless play in the 39th minute, conceding a free kick in a dangerous area in the process.

From the resultant free kick, Thabo Mnyamane was unlucky to see his effort hit the cross bar with Bruce Bvuma completely beaten.

Two minutes later, Tshakhuma took the lead. Mnyamane expertly found an Thabo Rakhale inside the Amakhosi box, he chested it to his feet and sent a rocket past Bvuma.

Chiefs came close to the equaliser in the 51st minute, with Samir Nurkovic’s effort from a corner, but Arubi managed to fist the ball over.

TTM also had a glorious chance in the 54th minute after some neat inter-passing the ball ended in front of Celimpilo Ngema, but he sliced his shot across goal with Bvuma at his mercy.

Ngema was again set through on goal four minutes later, but he shot wide with only the keeper to beat.

Chiefs almost had a penalty appeal denied when Nurkovic was brought down inside the box, but the referee, Victor Hlungwani felt there was no contact. But after consulting with the fourth official, he changed his mind and gave the spot kick.

Arubi saved Lebogang Manyama’s initial shot, but the ball spilled and fell kindly for Manyama and he slid it under the keeper to equalise for Amakhosi.

Tshakhuma had their penalty appeal denied as well after the ball had hit Ramahlwe Mphahlele on the arm.

There was a nervy moment for Amakhosi with just over 10 minutes to go when Bvuma got injured. He had stated the game in thee absence of both Itumeleng Khune and Daniel Akpeyi who were injured. Bvuma was however able to continue after receiving some medical attention.

Tshakhuma were finally awarded a penalty when Siyabonga Ngezana handled the ball inside the box, and Mnyamane scored from the spot to give TTM maximum points.

Will ANC account for alleged tax fraud linked to employee salaries?

May 4th 2021 at 13:21

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) must get tough with the ANC over the party’s alleged R17 million tax bill trickery, with experts saying this will drive home the sting of the legal implications of non-compliance and in turn inspire tax morality.

Insiders allege that the party is sitting on a massive tax bill, which includes millions of rands in pay-as-you-earn (PAYE) tax, which was deducted from salaries, but not paid to Sars. In terms of the Income Tax Act, this action is a criminal offence punishable by prison time.

Reports suggest that the cash-strapped ANC had an R80 million tax bill when Paul Mashatile took over as treasurer-general in December 2017, and that the party reportedly owed a further R140 million in provident-fund debt.

ALSO READ: Ace Magashule must step aside or be suspended

To date, Mashatile has reportedly paid over R100 million servicing this debt, but the bill remained high because of the interest.

ANC must be treated like any other ‘non-compliant organisation’

“The perception is there that there is no toughness against non-compliance, which is not good for tax morality. The public must see how Sars deals with this matter, that it is costly to be non-compliant,” tax attorney at Tax Consulting South Africa, Jean du Toit. said.

He said if a company is non-compliant, Sars has options to go for the company or the directors personally. In the case of an organisation such as the ANC, Sars could go after the organisation itself as a collective, or its representatives.

“There will be a designated person to ensure that the organisation meets its tax obligations,” he said.

Economist Patrick Bond said though he was unsure who should take responsibility for the party’s tax woes, he was fascinated by the apparent roles of Luthuli House leadership in this tax saga.

ALSO READ: Coming soon: ANC vs ANC in court over step-aside rules

“…because the treasurers of the party were not only Dr Zweli Mkhize before 2019 – and his own patronage through friends’ tender deals [on communication contracts] – have come to light; but also now Paul Mashatile… both Ramaphosa allies. Of course (secretary-general Ace) Magashule or (deputy secretary-general Jessie) Duarte should bear current responsibility,” he said.

Bond said former secretary-general Gwede Mantashe should also take responsibility if this practice dated back to 2017 and earlier.

Opposition calls for all to be equal before the law

The DA, meanwhile, welcomed Sars’ garnishing the R17 million allocated to the ANC by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) for the first quarter of 2021-2022 as partial payment of its debt.

Geordin Hill-Lewis, the party’s spokesperson on finance, urged Sars to continue to uphold the constitutionally enshrined principles of transparency and accountability.

“It is imperative that Sars act without any fear or favour in reclaiming any and all outstanding monies from the ANC. In terms of the Income Tax Act, it is a criminal offence punishable by prison time for anyone to wilfully and without justification withhold funds owed to Sars,” he said.

According to Hill-Lewis, as the withholding agent for its employees’ PAYE taxes, the ANC, just like any other employer in SA, was was directly liable for any tax debts on its employees’ names that is incurred due to its own negligent or possibly fraudulent action.

ALSO READ: First take: Well, what now Ace?

“Any suggestion of corruption on the part of the governing party must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” he said in a statement.

Siphithi Sibeko, Sars media manager, said they were prohibited by law to discuss or comment on the tax matters of their clients.

ANC spokesperson Pule Mabe ignored requests for comment.

siphom@citizen.co.za

‘Drunk’ KZN man rescued after falling off cliff

May 4th 2021 at 12:20

A 58-year-old man who fell off a cliff was rescued this morning after he was trapped halfway down a cliff for more than 12 hours in Ezindlovini in Oakford, KwaZulu-Natal.

According to the Reaction Unit South Africa (Rusa), they received a call from a member of the community in the morning requesting assistance for the man after they heard him calling out for help.

WATCH: Brazen attempted kidnapping caught on camera

In a statement Rusa, said the man was allegedly drunk as he had been drinking the night before.

“It was established that the man was consuming alcohol last night when he slipped while walking on an embankment above the cliff,” Rusa said.

Reportedly drunk male falls off cliff at Ezindlovini, KZN https://t.co/9xNxKVSV87 #ArriveAlive pic.twitter.com/XPPHuKC20W

— Arrive Alive (@_ArriveAlive) May 4, 2021

Rusa said the man estimated the time to have been at 11pm when the incident occurred.

“Reaction officers and medics proceeded to the location and on arrival spoke to the male who could only be heard as he was blocked by vegetation,” Rusa said.

The man explained that he was injured and was stuck in a bush on the face of the cliff.

“Rescue technicians from the SAPS K9 Search & Rescue Unit and Emer-G-Med arrived on scene and were in the process of abseiling down the cliff when the elderly male managed to free himself and slid down to a stream at the base of the cliff,” Rusa added.

The man was then assisted by members of the community. He did not suffer any serious injuries but was transported to hospital by ambulance.

Compiled by Reitumetse Makwea

ALSO READ: Drunk man knocked out in Cape Town

Golf’s South African love story: Daniel and Abi van Tonder

May 4th 2021 at 11:54

It is one of the great love stories in golf. The husband and wife team of Daniel and Abi van Tonder continues to flourish on the fairways with victory after victory, the latest of which in the Kenya Savannah Classic in March earned them a European Tour card.

In the last nine months Team Van Tonder has won five times. Van Tonder heads into this week’s Dimension Data Pro-Am at Fancourt as a man very much on the rise in the world rankings. His performances on the Sunshine Tour also saw him experience a World Golf Championship event this year, and he will make his Major debut in the upcoming PGA Championship.

At every opportunity he gets, Van Tonder credits his wife and caddie Abi for the calming influence she is on his bag. Her impact on his life has been far greater though. A quiet and almost shy woman from a humble upbringing in the small town of Potgietersrus, she has been the rock that helped him get through the most difficult years in his life.

ALSO READ: Van Tonder seals status with Kenya Savannah Classic win

Van Tonder suffered immense and sustained emotional trauma as a child and teenager. It carried over into his early professional career and it could quite easily have broken him. “It was a very difficult time for him. The whole of 2015, 2016 and 2017 was especially bad,” says Abi. There is no need to retell here exactly what happened, because this is a love story. And Abi came along at exactly the right time in his life.

She was quite literally a lifeline for Van Tonder when, on that tournament day in December 2013, he walked up to her coffee station on the driving range at Mount Edgecombe during the Nelson Mandela Championship.

“He came over and bought a coffee from me, and started a conversation,” says Abi.

But much like a challenging golf course, Van Tonder was going to need to use every club in his bag to win the heart of the lady at the coffee station.

“We’re both Afrikaans speaking, but I spoke English to him because to be honest I wasn’t really interested,” she says with a laugh.

“He came to buy a coffee quite early and I wasn’t actually open yet. I told him he needed to wait for his change.”

And that’s when Van Tonder delivered the “shot” of his lifetime that would’ve made even Cupid blush.

“He told me he’d wait for a pretty face anytime,” says Abi. “We just kept in contact from there. Then we started dating in 2014, and the following year we were engaged.”

ALSO READ: No stopping Van Tonder as he claims fourth title in last six starts

As simple as Van Tonder likes to keep things on the golf course, he certainly makes up for it as a romantic. His proposal to Abi was definitely one for the books.

“He proposed to me when he played in the Nedbank Golf Challenge in 2015. But then he said it’s half a proposal because he wants to do it properly. After the tournament he took me in a helicopter ride to the Valley of a Thousand Hills in KwaZulu-Natal, and we had a picnic on the mountain there. He proposed to me there. It was quite special.

“Caddying wasn’t actually in the picture. I wanted to be a game ranger. But it went that way, and now here we are.”

Abi has had a front-row seat to Van Tonder’s transformation as a golfer over the past few years to the point where he now has a European Tour card, is playing in Majors, and is working hard to break into the top 50 on the world rankings from his current position of 75th.

“He’s matured a lot on the golf course. He used to be too aggressive on the course and he would get angry with himself.

“I joke with him now that he’s getting older so can’t get so angry anymore. So now if he gets angry, he’s over it by the next tee box. I like to joke with him a lot during a round. For example, in Kenya (during the final round of the European Tour’s Kenya Savannah Classic) he made back-to-back bogeys on the second nine. When he made the second bogey I turned to him and called him an egg. I was just like, ‘You’re such an egg’.

“He just gave me this comical look, and when the camera was pointing at him he just smiled. It’s little things like that which just break the seriousness a bit. I know him when he gets too serious. It’s not good for him, when he’s too zoned in. He almost loses focus then.”

And now it’s time to take this love story on the road, as the two of them embark on their European Tour adventure. Albeit with the restrictions of love in the time of Covid.

“It’s going to be fun travelling on the European Tour, but the sad part is that with Covid we can’t do any sightseeing,” says Abi.

Either way, you still know that the happiest player-caddie couple in golf are going to have a fun time together.

Bill and Melinda Gates call it quits after 27 years of marriage

May 3rd 2021 at 17:01

Microsoft co-founder and billionaire Bill Gates and his wife Melinda are getting a divorce after 27 years of marriage.

The couple, founders and trustees of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, met in the 1980s and were married in 1994. They have three children together.

“After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage,” they announced in a joint statement on Twitter.

ALSO READ: Trevor Noah says he got ‘death threats’ for interviewing Bill Gates

“Over the last 27 years, we have raised  three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world  to enable people to lead  healthy productive lives.

“We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation but we no longer believe  we can grow  together as  a couple in this next phase of our lives.”

According to Forbes, Bill Gates is one of the richest people in the world, with a net worth estimated at $124 billion (R1.78 trillion).

This is a developing story.

Gauteng concerned after ‘notable increase’ in Covid-19 cases

May 3rd 2021 at 15:35

The Gauteng department of health has raised the alarm after a “notable” increase in new Covid-19 cases.

“The [department] is concerned about notable increase in new Covid-19 cases,” said spokesperson Kwara Kekana.

“New cases continue to increase across the province, especially in the Sedibeng District where there was a notable increase of cases compared to the previous week.”

ALSO READ: Covid-afflicted man who went to work rightfully dismissed, says court

Kekana said in the past two weeks, an increased number of new cases were also recorded in Emfuleni, Tshwane 3, and Johannesburg D subdistricts.

As of Sunday, 2 May, there were 424 326 confirmed cases and 10 664 deaths in Gauteng.

Recoveries were sitting at 410 573, the department said.

The department has urged people in the province to play their part in containing the transmission of the virus by adhering to preventative measures.

ALSO READ: Traveller from Covid-ravaged India tests positive in KZN

The department said a total number of 1 311 people were currently admitted in public and private hospitals.

Nationally, confirmed cases were sitting at 1 584 064, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announced on Sunday.

An additional 11 Covid-19 related deaths were recorded, bringing the total to 54 417.

The total number of healthcare workers vaccinated under the Sisonke trial to date remained at 318 670.

Sesona Ngqakamba

Mango mismanagement bordering on criminal

May 3rd 2021 at 14:50

It’s difficult to imagine a worse outcome for Mango, the low-cost carrier seemingly on life support.

Running an airline hinges on confidence. Prospective passengers need to be confident your planes are safe, and that your flights will actually take off.

With Mango, there have been increasingly loud murmurs regarding maintenance of late, and the events of the past few days have basically shattered whatever confidence was left.

ALSO READ: Mango airline flies again, as SAA exits business rescue

Two weeks ago, it was still accepting bookings for May onwards despite its own management having doubts over being able to operate post the end of April. This is the very definition of reckless trading.

Reckless

Things came to a head when a letter to staff from the airline’s acting CEO William Ndlovu leaked.

Never mind his incoherent ramblings about vibrations, frequencies, and the power of prayer, the letter made it clear it would halt operations on May 1. At that point, it finally stopped accepting bookings beyond April 30.Then, on Wednesday Mango flights did not take off as scheduled in the morning.

The airline apologised for “flight interruptions” at 6am but gave no other information. It emerged during that morning that Acsa (Airports Company South Africa) barred Mango from taking off as the airline had not kept up with its payment plan to settle debts owed to the airport operator.

Not part of the plan

Frantic meetings between those parties and ‘the shareholder’ (the Department of Public Enterprises) resolved the impasse and Mango operated “flights” to Durban at 20:30, returning to OR Tambo “just before curfew”.

Following additional frantic meetings with ‘the shareholder’ on Thursday and Friday, the funding crisis was resolved and the airline announced just before 5pm that it would continue “to operate as normal” in May “and beyond”.

(At least the mystery of how SAA rapidly and unexpectedly exited business rescue this week is solved – the business rescue practitioners refused to allow bailout funding to flow to subsidiaries as they were not in the original plan.)

No room to idle

The issue here is that running an airline is fundamentally different to running a factory or a mine, something government simply does not comprehend.

A factory or mine can stand idle for a month while its management and government bicker over funding. An airline can’t. Now that confidence in Mango has all but evaporated, social media is full of worried ticketholders. And who in their right mind will book a ticket in May “or beyond”?

ALSO READ: ‘F**king shame’ as Mango faces grounding in May

Taxpayers ought to be concerned about how big the hole in Mango’s accounts is.

The Comair business rescue required R500 million of fresh equity and R1.4 billion in additional funding from lenders. Last year, Mango said it needed recapitalisation of R1 billion.Given that Mango owes Acsa a lot of money (it was in debt before the pandemic hit) and its lessors even more money, it is quite conceivable this figure is now significantly higher than R1 billion.

Lots of questions

How it landed in this mess is unclear.

When SAA effectively withdrew from the domestic market, it handed all that demand to Mango on a golden platter.

Fast-forward to now and it’s operating three return flights a day to Cape Town and two to Durban, with roughly daily service to Port Elizabeth and five flights a week to George. The lucrative Zanzibar route has been halted (one of the few destinations South Africans can travel to and not quarantine upon arrival), although the airline has assured there’ll be an update on this soon.

This schedule hardly requires 14 aircraft, which is the number it is ostensibly currently leasing. A few of these, Moneyweb understands, have been grounded for maintenance for some time. But what of the rest? No wonder it’s burning through cash at the rate it is.

There are obvious winners in this mess.

Competitors strike

FlySafair and Comair continue to gobble up demand on the major routes, while Airlink and Comair have gobbled up demand on secondary routes (to places like Bloemfontein and Port Elizabeth) and have effectively ensured that there is no market left for whoever ends up owning SA Express.

And there’s enough demand on the main routes of Joburg-Cape Town and Joburg-Durban that these smaller airlines have started operating on those too. FlySafair and Airlink both want to start flying to Zanzibar. When they do, Mango will struggle to remain profitable on that route.

Because of the chaos and uncertainty surrounding Mango in the past two weeks, one can imagine a scenario where it struggles to fill its planes, resulting in another cash crunch, meaning a bigger bailout will be required.

Will government continue throwing good money after bad?

Mboweni heads to ConCourt to save B-BBEE rules

May 3rd 2021 at 14:18

The finance minister has turned to the Constitutional Court in a bid to salvage controversial legislation which lets government automatically disqualify tender hopefuls whose businesses do not meet its standards for broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE).

Last year, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) declared the revised preferential procurement regulations then minister Pravin Gordhan promulgated in 2017 – and their provisions for race-based “pre-qualification” criteria – invalid.

ALSO READ: ‘Apartheid in reverse’: AfriForum lashed for tourism fund court challenge

This was on the back of a legal battle waged by business organisation Sakeliga (formerly AfriBusiness), which said the regulations “heralded a new era in race-based procurement”.

The High Court in Pretoria in 2018 ruled the regulations were “lawful and rational” and dismissed Sakeliga’s case.

On appeal, however, the SCA in November found the regulations were not aligned to the Constitution’s requirements for organs of states contracting out work and that the erstwhile minister acted outside of his powers when he promulgated them.

It set the regulations aside, but suspended its order for 12 months to give current minister, Tito Mboweni, time to enact new regulations.

Mboweni wants another bite at the cherry, though, and has filed an application for leave to appeal in the apex court.

The SCA’s judgment focused largely on Section 217 (1), which states that: “When an organ of state in the national, provincial or local sphere of government, or any other institution identified in national legislation, contracts for goods or services, it must do so in accordance with a system which is fair, equitable, transparent, competitive and cost effective.”

But the minister’s argument centres largely on Section 217 (2) which provides that this “does not prevent the organs of state or institutions referred to in that subsection from implementing a procurement policy providing for categories of preference in the allocation of contracts; and the protection or advancement of persons, or categories of persons, disadvantaged by unfair discrimination”.

In their heads of argument, his counsel, Ngwako Maentje and Mkhului Stubbs, also said Sakeliga’s true concern was that the regulations “exclude exclusively white entities from winning tenders from government if they remain completely untransformed”.

ALSO READ: Ramaphosa: We will appoint any ‘capable, qualified and ethical’ person

They denied this, insisting the regulations sought only to “reverse past racial injustice”.

Sakeliga is opposing the application and says an appeal bears no prospects of success. The organisation’s case, in part, is that tenders should be awarded in line with the legislated preference points system and that race – as well as gender and disability – only come into play during the preference point adjudication.

“Race, gender and disability cannot be used to first establish a group of ‘qualified’ tenderers and thereafter again be taken into account as part of the preference point system,” the organisation’s counsel, Bertus Bergenthuin and Maisa Merabe, said.

They accused the minister of “playing the race card” and were adamant the application was “not a question of white against black”.

“The application concerns merely a question of transparency and fairness,” they said.

bernadettew@citizen.co.za

Ramaphosa’s clean-up drive gathers momentum in Ekurhuleni

May 3rd 2021 at 13:50

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s clean-up campaign pledge, made at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture to eliminate the embedded graft within the ranks of government, appears to be gathering momentum, with the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) being in full sights of the City of Ekurhuleni’s procurement procedures.

ALSO READ: SIU investigates R27 million Ekurhuleni waste collection contract

With Ramaphosa having signed Proclamation R15 of 2021 authoring the SIU to investigate corruption and maladministration in the affairs of Ekurhuleni and the Gauteng department of agriculture, to recover losses incurred by the state, ANC national spokesman Pule Mabe could become the first casualty.

Enviro Mobi, a company with links to Mabe, which won R27 million in a tender to supply 58 waste picking motorbikes to Ekurhuleni, is subject of the SIU probe.

Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mzwandile Masina has welcomed the investigation.

The SIU investigation is:

  • Covering the 2017 procurement of, or contracting for, the supply of 200 portable three-wheel motorised waste collection vehicles.
  • Determining whether the tender or payments made were in line with legislation or National Treasury guidelines.

ALSO READ: Mayor ‘delighted’ after Ekurhuleni receives clean audit opinion

Ekurhuleni spokesman Phakamile Mbengashe said: “Our legal team is working with the SIU in the investigation.”

Ekurhuleni sub-contracted waste recycler Kenneth Tshabalala, claimed some of the scooters were abandoned at the Chloorkop waste dump, outside Kempton Park, “without having been given to the recyclers”.

Meanwhile, Tshabalala has instructed Mbuyisa Moleele Incorporation to probe the terms of agreement entered into between himself and the Ekurhuleni-appointed main contractor Nokeng Gundo Waste Management JV.

Last year The Citizen reported how the City of Ekurhuleni’s empowerment scheme, budgeted at R276 million annually to empower township community-based contractors (CBCs), only brought misery and destitution to struggling entrepreneurs.

ALSO READ: Protest over Ekurhuleni waste tenders causes big stink

Whistleblowers Molly Shekeshe, Esau “Jack” Mzunga and Tshabalala claimed their five-year contracts as CBCs were abruptly discontinued by Ekurhuleni-appointed development contractors Bvumi and Nokeng-Gundo.

brians@citizen.co.za

France’s Macron to defy ‘cancel culture’ and lay wreath for Napoleon

May 3rd 2021 at 13:26

Paris – French President Emmanuel Macron will commemorate the 200th anniversary of the death of Napoleon Bonaparte on Wednesday despite calls to boycott the late emperor over his record on slavery.

The landmark posed a dilemma for Macron caught between calls from nationalists to celebrate one of the most significant figures in French history and a campaign from anti-racism activists against the fabled Corsican.

“It will be a commemoration, not a celebration,” an aide told reporters on Monday on condition of anonymity.

ALSO READ: Scuffles, arrests in Paris as thousands mark May Day

The head of state will lay a wreath at Napoleon’s tomb at the Invalides monument in Paris and deliver a speech on the legacy of the man who overthrew the first republic and crowned himself emperor.

The aide made clear that Macron would not bow to pressure to ignore or “cancel” Napoleon.

“Our approach is to look at history in the face,” the aide said, adding that the approach meant “neither denial, nor repentance”.

France owes many things to Napoleon, who seized power in a coup in 1799, including many of the political, cultural and educational institutions that exist to this day, the aide explained.

These include the civil code, the basis of the French legal system, the school system, the central bank and the country’s highest civilian award, the Legion d’Honneur.

The aide said Macron would deliver a clear denunciation of slavery, which was re-established by Napoleon in French colonies in 1802 after being abolished under the first French republic.

ALSO READ: Algeria to Rwanda: Macron tackles dark chapters of France’s past

“The president will say that it was an abomination, including in the context of the era,” the aide said.

Before and after he rose to power, Napoleon clocked up a series of historic military victories, most notably the Battle of Austerlitz against the larger Russian and Austrian armies.

Considered a military genius and one of the best-known characters in French history, he is still studied in military academies around the world.

Yet his war-mongering in Europe and the Middle East, his record on slavery, and sexist laws that discriminated against women have led to a re-evaluation of his place in the French historical pantheon.

Late president Jacques Chirac refused to attend the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Austerlitz in 2005, while ex-prime minister Lionel Jospin published a book titled “The Napoleonic Evil”.

ALSO READ: Philippines’ top diplomat ‘politely’ tells China: ‘GET THE F OUT’

Over previous months, politicians on both sides of the left-right divide have weighed in, while historians have argued whether it is fair to judge Napoleon by today’s ethical standards.

Traveller from Covid-ravaged India tests positive in KZN

May 3rd 2021 at 13:07

A person, who travelled from India to South Africa, has tested positive for the Covid-19 virus.

However, health teams are still testing whether the person has been infected with the virus variant currently spreading in India.

ALSO READ: India nears 20m Covid-19 cases with deadly oxygen shortages

“Covid-19 case numbers currently remain extremely low in our hospitals. We can however confirm that one patient who had recently travelled from India was treated in isolation for Covid-19 at a hospital in KwaZulu-Natal. We remain vigilant in maintaining strict safety precautions in our facilities and apply an abundance of caution in treating all patients,” said Dr Caroline Maslo, senior clinical advisor and head of infection control of Netcare’s hospital division.

According to a source in the Covid-19 Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC), the individual was seen at Kingsway Hospital in Durban and then transferred to Inkosi Albert Luthuli Hospital.

“He is positive – the only thing outstanding is gene sequencing for the India variant of Covid-19. India’s variant is slightly different because it has a triple mutation, which is why it is probably spreading so fast over there,” the committee insider said.

ALSO READ: Covid-afflicted man who went to work rightfully dismissed, says court

He added that gene sequencing could take up to a week.

“The Covid-19 tracing teams are trying to trace his contacts at the moment.”

The source added that many in the MAC were pushing for stricter border protocols in SA.

“Our main problem is our borders. We are pushing for government to close the airports. Our borders are so porous.”

He said SA presently allowed people with negative tests into the country.

“We are pushing for mandatory 14 days quarantining upon landing. If you come from another country, we are not interested in your piece of paper, we want to ensure you are negative to protect others in our society.”

India, one of the most populated countries on the planet, has reported over 3 000 deaths in one day, the highest ever in a day, taking the country to 215 000 deaths overall.

They also recorded just under 400 000 infections, bringing the total number of cases past 19.5 million.

NICD on India

According to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD), they were following the resurgence of Covid-19 cases in India, particularly the different variants, including the B.1.617 coronavirus variant.

“The institution has tremendous empathy for the dire situation that is unfolding in India and would like to reassure the South African public that we are keeping a close eye on developments,” said Professor Adrian Puren, the NICD’s Acting Executive Director.

To date the B.1.617 variant has not been detected in South Africa and any suspected cases will be investigated, he said.

“Testing of Covid-19 positive samples from travellers entering South Africa from India and their close contacts will be prioritised,” Dr Michelle Groome, Head of the Division of Public Health Surveillance and Response at the NICD said.

She said this would enable the NICD to detect the B.1.617 and any other variants, “… in a timely manner”.

The mutation of viruses is a natural occurrence in the life-cycle of any virus, evident with the detection of the SARS-CoV-2 501Y.V2 lineage in South Africa in October 2020, Puren said.

Although viral mutations are unavoidable, adherence to non-pharmaceutical interventions have proven to greatly lessen transmission of the disease, he added.

“South Africans are reminded to wear their masks, wash their hands with soap and water or to use hand sanitiser, and to keep a physical distance of at least 1.5 m from others. Social activities and small gatherings should take place outdoors, if possible, or in well-ventilated areas with open windows and doors, as proper ventilation plays an important role in reducing the spread,” he said.

The National Department of Health did not respond to News 24’s request for comment. Their comment will be added once received.

Kaveel Singh

Lloyd Harris takes down Dimitrov in Madrid

May 3rd 2021 at 12:25

Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov fell in the first round of the Madrid Open on Monday after losing in three sets to South African Lloyd Harris.

Harris, who beat world number four Dominic Thiem and Denis Shapovalov en route to the final in Dubai in March, pulled off another upset by ousting Dimitrov 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (7/5).

The world number 54 held off a late fightback from 13th seed Dimitrov, who saved three match points in the final set before breaking back to force a tie-break.

“It was a big up and down match, I had a set and a break, then I was a break up in the third too,” said Harris. “I got a little bit nervous at the end but I’m happy to close it out.”

In his first appearance at the Madrid tournament, Harris will now face Australia’s 22-year-old Alex de Minaur in round two.

Two-time quarter-finalist John Isner battled past Serbia’s Miomir Kecmanovic 6-4 7-6 (6) while 11th seed Shapovalov defeated another Serbian Dusan Lajovic 6-1, 6-3.

In the women’s draw, Petra Kvitova, the champion in 2011, 2015 and 2018, had to work hard to beat Russia’s Veronika Kudermetova 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 and reach the quarter-finals.

Eighth seed Belinda Bencia is also through after Ons Jabeur retired trailing 7-6 (2) 4-3.

Next few weeks will see massive ramp-up in SA’s vaccine rollout

May 3rd 2021 at 12:16

Despite a slow start and the on-again-off-again Covid-19 vaccine rollout, experts have expressed faith in South Africa’s ability and infrastructure to ramp up inoculations but will need to optimally utilise both public and private resources.

To date, 318,670 healthcare workers have been vaccinated since the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine under the Sisonke Study, but this was temporarily halted following reports of a rare clotting condition.

ALSO READ: 300,000 Pfizer vaccines arrive in South Africa

The first batch of 325,260 doses of Pfizer vaccines arrived in the country on Monday morning, with approximately the same number of doses expected to land on a weekly basis to a total of over 1.3 million doses by the end of May.

Thereafter, the vaccine supply will increase to an average of 636 480 doses weekly from 31 May, which the health department said will see SA accumulating close to 4,5 million doses by the end of June.

Though the Johnson & Johnson vaccine roll-out was considered slow despite it being a single dose, public health experts believe SA was equipped to roll out the double-dose Pfizer vaccine.

Private sector must come to the party

“We do have enough infrastructure if we treat the health system as a whole and utilise public and private facilities including pharmacies as delivery modes,” public health specialist Dr Atiya Mosam said. “However, this decentralised approach will need to be carefully planned to ensure consistent and efficient delivery.”

She added that rural and underserved areas where facilities were few and far between would need alternative delivery platforms to ensure that they were not left behind.

ALSO READ: Cabinet welcomes decision to end Johnson and Johnson vaccine suspension

Public health expert and researcher Dr Shakira Choonara believes SA has amassed significant experience in rolling out vaccines in previous immunisation programmes.

“I do not foresee that there will be challenges. These past few months may have provided insights into teething problems. Once we have the supply and if government keeps to their end of the bargain (ensure registration and implementation), we should be able to rollout the vaccine,” she said.

Choonara added that it would also be critical to keep track of vaccine hesitancy.

After landing at OR Tambo International Airport, the Pfizer batch was transported to a central warehouse under heavy security coordinated by the National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (Natjoints).

Samples will then be sent to the National Control Laboratory for quality assurance and, after release, will be distributed to the provinces.

Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize said they had been notified that the Johnson & Johnson doses still awaiting dispatch in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape were expected to be released around the middle of May.

He said the consignment was held due to a protracted safety verification process with international regulatory agencies (the Food and Drug Administration, European Medicines Agency and the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority) in the wake of the adverse findings during inspection of Emergent BioSolutions Bayview facility in the United States, one of the manufacturing partners of Johnson & Johnson.

“In the meantime, we will continue to vaccinate our healthcare workers with the remaining early access doses of Johnson & Johnson (through the Sisonke Protocol) and we will proceed to vaccinate with Pfizer,” the minister said in a statement.

Mkhize called on all healthcare workers, including traditional healers, and all citizens 60 years and above to register on the Electronic Vaccination Data System.

siphom@citizen.co.za

Guardiola calls for Man City cool heads to see off PSG

May 3rd 2021 at 11:39

Pep Guardiola on Monday called on his Manchester City players to control their emotions if they are to reach a first ever Champions League final as they take a 2-1 lead into the second leg of their semi-final against Paris Saint-Germain.

City came from behind with a stunning second-half performance in the French capital last week to take a giant step towards a goal they have been chasing ever since Sheikh Mansour’s takeover in 2008 transformed the club’s fortunes.

Guardiola has won the Champions League twice as a coach when in charge of Barcelona, but has failed to do so in the past 10 years as he has suffered numerous agonising exits from Europe’s premier club competition as Barca, Bayern Munich and City boss.

City moved to the brink of sealing a third Premier League title in four years at the weekend and Guardiola urged his side to maintain the same focus they have all season to see off PSG on Tuesday.

“The second-leg of semi-final always the toughest game, more than the final. We have to control our emotions to do exactly what we have to do,” said Guardiola at his pre-match press conference.

“You cannot play 90 minutes like we played in the second half (in Paris). I would love to but it won’t happen.

“You have to understand it will be a big battle and we are going to suffer. They have to visualise that we are going to do it.

“What we have to do is not different to what we have done over the last seven months. Go out and play our game and win.”

PSG are also dreaming of winning the Champions League for the first time, but if they are to progress to the final for a second consecutive season, they will need to score at least twice at the Etihad.

City have not conceded more than once in a Champions League game all season as the centre-back partnership of Ruben Dias and John Stones has eradicated the sort of defensive lapses that have cost Guardiola’s men in previous years in this competition.

Stones admitted the English champions-elect have to remain wary of the “world class” talents of PSG star duo Kylian Mbappe and Neymar, but said City are confident of finally getting to the final

“I think (we are) quietly confident, we have to be. It is a big occasion for us as players and as a club, a chance to get into a Champions League final,” said Stones.

“We have got to go into it where we left off. We are really confident and excited for the challenge ahead.”

Mbappe is an injury doubt after sitting out Saturday’s 2-1 win over Lens due to a calf strain.

The French World Cup winner has travelled to Manchester with the rest of the PSG squad and Guardiola dismissed any suggestion he won’t be available.

“He is going to play,” added Guardiola. “I am looking forward to him playing, for the football and the game itself.”

Simbine carries SA team to gold at World Relays

May 2nd 2021 at 15:48

 

South Africa secured its first ever gold medal at the World Athletics Relays, with the national 4x100m team delivering a memorable performance in the final in Silesia, Poland on Sunday night.

Taking over in second place on the final leg, SA 100m record holder Akani Simbine managed to chase down the Brazilian team in the home straight.

With Simbine dipping on the line in 38.71, the SA quartet – also including Thando Dlodlo, Gift Leotlela and Clarence Munyai – secured victory by 0.01.

Brazil were later disqualified, giving Italy the silver medal in 39.21.

In the men’s 4x400m final, junior prodigy Lythe Pillay, Zakithi Nene, Oscar Mavundla and Ranti Dikgale took fifth position.

Having progressed as the third quickest team in the heats the day before, they completed the four-lap race in 3:05.76.

The national mixed 4x400m team – Dikgale, Ukona Khuzwayo, Dalene Mpiti and Taylon Bieldt – were sixth in their heat in 3:19.18 on Saturday’s opening day of competition.

They did not qualify for a place in the final.

Daily Covid-19 update: Record low death toll

May 2nd 2021 at 15:39

As of Sunday, the cumulative number of detected Covid-19 cases is 1,584,064 with 1222 new cases identified, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has confirmed.

The total number of Covid-19 related deaths was 11, with 1 from Eastern Cape, 5 from Free State, 1 from Gauteng, 0 from KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), 0 from Limpopo, 0 from Mpumalanga, 0 from North West, 1 from Northern Cape and 3 from Western Cape.

This brings the total number of Covid-19 related deaths to 54, 417.

Recoveries now stand at 1,507,778 representing a recovery rate of 95%.

A total of 10,699,021 tests have been completed with 27,957 new tests conducted since the last report.

READ NEXT: First Pfizer batches to arrive in SA, Sunday night

The total number of vaccines that have been administered stands at 318,670.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announced that the first batches of Pfizer vaccines will land at OR Tambo International Airport on Sunday evening, 2 May.

Mkhize confirmed in a statement on Sunday that 325, 260 doses will arrive at 11.45pm.

“Upon arrival, the entire batch will be transported initially to a central warehouse. Samples will be sent to the National Control Laboratory for quality assurance and, after release, will be distributed to the provinces.

“Following this initial delivery of Pfizer we are expecting approximately the same number of doses, ie 325,260, to arrive on a weekly basis to a total of over 1.3 million doses by the end of May. Thereafter the vaccine supply will increase to an average of 636,480 doses weekly from 31 May which will see us accumulating close to 4.5 million doses by the end of June.”

In regards to the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, the health minister said they have received communication that the doses are “dispatch in Gqeberha are expected to be released around the middle of May.”

The vaccination of healthcare workers will continue with the Johnson and Johnson vaccines received earlier this year through the Sisonke Protocol. Mkhize called on healthcare workers and citizens over the age of 60 including traditional healers to register to get vaccinated.

Taliban, Afghan forces clash as US hands over base

May 2nd 2021 at 15:18

Fighting between Afghan government forces and the Taliban has left more than 100 insurgents dead in the past 24 hours, the defence ministry said Sunday as it took control of a US military base in a restive province.

The US military handed over Camp Antonik in the southern Helmand province to Afghan forces, a day after it formally began withdrawing its remaining troops from the country.

The Taliban and government forces clashed across several provinces, the ministry said, including in the former insurgent bastion of Kandahar where the US military carried out a “precision strike” on Saturday as it began the final troop pullout.

Another 52 Taliban fighters were wounded in the clashes, the ministry said, without giving details of any casualties suffered by government forces.

ALSO READ: Afghan retreat: US formally withdrawing from its longest war

The Taliban did not offer any comment on the fighting, but both sides are known to exaggerate casualties inflicted on the other.

Fighting on the ground has continued unabated in recent months as peace efforts aimed at ending the 20-year conflict have faltered.

The US military formally began withdrawing its remaining 2,500 troops from the violence-wracked country on Saturday, as ordered by President Joe Biden last month.

Afghan officials said all foreign troops were being taken to Bagram, the biggest American base in Afghanistan, and from there they would leave to their respective countries.

As part of the ongoing drawdown, the US military handed over Camp Antonik in Helmand to Afghan forces, the defence ministry said.

It said the base will be used by Afghanistan’s special forces that have been trained in counter-terrorism operations by the US military and NATO.

Photographs of the hand over ceremony released by Afghanistan’s defence ministry showed US soldiers lowering the US flag at the base and a group of Afghan troops subsequently raising the national flag.

The US military has handed over several bases to Afghan forces since Washington signed a landmark deal with the Taliban last year that paved the way for the withdrawal of foreign forces.

The deal signed in February 2020 under the administration of ex-president Donald Trump stipulated that all foreign forces would be withdrawn by May 1, 2021.

Biden announced in April that the last remaining 2,500 American troops would instead be withdrawn by the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks and not by May 1.

But he said their withdrawal would start on May 1.

As the formal pull out commenced on Saturday, the US military said it carried out a “precision strike” after an airfield in Kandahar where it has a base “received ineffective indirect fire” that caused no damage.

The attack on the Kandahar base, which has not been claimed by any group, came as the Taliban warned that the US military had violated the 2020 accord by not finishing the troop withdrawal by May 1.

“This in principle opens the way for our mujahideen to take appropriate action against the invading forces,” Mohammad Naeem, a Taliban spokesman, told AFP adding that the group was awaiting orders from its leaders for its future course of action.

Since the US withdrawal deal was struck the Taliban have not directly engaged foreign troops, but have mercilessly attacked government forces in the countryside and waged a terror campaign in urban areas.

Hamilton earns 97th Grand Prix win in Portugal

May 2nd 2021 at 14:52

 

Lewis Hamilton delivered a flawless drive in his Mercedes to win the Portuguese Grand Prix on Sunday from his arch title rival Max Verstappen.

Seven-time world champion Hamilton’s 97th Grand Prix triumph extended his early season lead over Red Bull’s Verstappen in the Formula One drivers’ standings to eight points.

In third place in Portimao was pole-sitter Valtteri Bottas in the other Mercedes with Sergio Perez in the second Red Bull in fourth.

“That was such a tough race physically and mentally. I didn’t get a good start and also lost out at the restart but it was a great result in the end,” said Hamilton.

“Today wasn’t all perfect and we need to get ready now for the quick turnaround for Spain.”

Lewis Hamilton at the Portuguese Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton on his way to victory for Mercedes at the Portuguese Grand Prix. Picture: Getty Images

At a sun-drenched Algarve International Circuit, Bottas led Hamilton from the two Red Bulls into the first corner.

By the end of lap one it was the safety car which led after the two Alfa Romeos collided, with Kimi Raikkonen’s front wing littered across the straight after clipping Antonio Giovinazzi’s car.

Bottas carefully controlled the rolling restart on lap seven but in his rearview mirror he will have seen Verstappen charge past Hamilton and into second.

“That a boy” was the pleased reaction on the team radio from the Red Bull pits.

But four laps later and a mistake by the Dutchman on turn 14 let Hamilton regain second, darting past on the inside with Verstappen snapping: “I’m just a sitting duck on the straight. It’s unbelievable.”

Hamilton hit the front with a superb sweeping move past Bottas at the start of lap 20, quickly establishing daylight between the Mercedes men.

Verstappen was the first of the leading group to pit on lap 36, with Bottas next, followed by Hamilton, with Perez yet to change tyres, in front.

With 13 laps left Hamilton pushed past Perez to regain control of the third leg of the record 23-race season, and from there the race was his to lose.

“I think Max made a mistake at some point and that was perfect. With Valtteri I had to make the move early on before the tyres were destroyed and I just managed to get him at turn one. Right on my limit. Great race,” added Hamilton.

“We were not on top of it here but we’ll see what we can do in Barcelona,” said Verstappen, referring to next weekend’s race in Spain.

Intrigue in the closing stages surrounded the question of who would end up with a potentially crucial point for the fastest lap.

Verstappen thought he’d clinched it only for his effort to be ruled out due to track limits with Bottas eventually taking the honours.

The Red Bulls are emerging as serious challengers to Mercedes’ supremacy but the world champions have evidently worked hard to redress any imbalance in performance between the two teams.

And after three legs of the season it is Hamilton in his quest for a record eighth world crown that has won twice, adding this to his opening success in Bahrain, with Verstappen the winner in Imola.

Sitting third in the drivers’ standings is Lando Norris for resurgent McLaren after the Briton took fifth on Sunday.

He came in ahead of the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc, with the Alpines of Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso, Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) and the AlphaTauri of Pierre Gasly completing the top 10.

Man Utd fans’ anti-Glazer protest forces postponement of Liverpool clash

May 2nd 2021 at 14:17

 

Manchester United’s Premier League clash against Liverpool was postponed on Sunday, after fans invaded the Old Trafford pitch as part of a protest against United’s owners, the Glazer family.

Hundreds of fans managed to make their way into the ground, chanting “we want Glazers out.”

Large numbers of supporters had also gathered outside the stadium and there were clashes with police as they moved in to disperse the crowd.

“Following discussion between the police, the Premier League, Trafford Council and the clubs, our match against Liverpool has been postponed due to safety and security considerations around the protest today,” United said in a statement.

“Our fans are passionate about Manchester United and we completely acknowledge the right to free expression and peaceful protest.

“However, we regret the disruption to the team and actions which put other fans, staff and the police in danger. We thank the police for their support and will assist them in any subsequent investigations.”

The match had been due to start at 1630 local time (1530GMT), but had been delayed by over an hour before the decision to call the match off was confirmed.

“The security and safety of everyone at Old Trafford remains of paramount importance,” the Premier League said in a statement.

“We understand and respect the strength of feeling but condemn all acts of violence, criminal damage and trespass, especially given the associated COVID-19 breaches.

“Fans have many channels by which to make their views known, but the actions of a minority seen today have no justification.”

Manchester City could have been crowned Premier League champions on Sunday had United lost the match.

No rearranged date has yet been agreed for the fixture to be played.

“Liverpool Football Club was in full agreement with the decision to postpone today’s fixture as a result of ongoing events at Old Trafford and the surrounding area,” Liverpool said in a statement.

“It is our position that public safety must be the number one factor in any such decision, with the ability to provide a secure environment for the participants, staff and officials being a particular priority.

“It was clearly not possible for this to be guaranteed today due to a situation which escalated rapidly.”

– Anger reignited –

Anger towards the Glazers has been reignited by United’s part in a failed European Super League (ESL) project, that collapsed within 48 hours last month due to a backlash from fans, players, governments and governing bodies.

United and Liverpool were reportedly two of the leading drivers behind the project that sought to guarantee top level European football for 15 founder members every season without the need to qualify on the pitch.

In a rare public statement, United co-chairman Joel Glazer apologised to fans last month for signing up to the ESL.

“You made very clear your opposition to the European Super League, and we have listened. We got it wrong, and we want to show that we can put things right,” he said.

United fans also breached security at their club’s training ground in the days after the ESL proposals were made public to protest against the Glazers.

The Americans have owned United since a controversial leveraged takeover in 2005 saddled the club with hundreds of millions of pounds worth of debt.

As the English giants have paid off huge interest payments, the Glazers have still regularly drawn out millions in dividends from their shares.

United fans wore green and gold colours to matches early in the Glazers’ reign, the colours of Newton Heath, the club founded in 1878 that eventually became Manchester United 24 years later, as a sign of protest.

Green and gold scarves and flares were back at Old Trafford on Sunday, while there were a number of banners aimed at the Glazers.

United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has already announced he will be leaving his role by the end of the year amid the fallout from the failed ESL project.

“There’s huge discontent, not just across Manchester United fans, but I think for football fans up and down the country and I think they are just saying enough is enough,” former United captain Gary Neville told Sky Sports.

kca/dj/nr

Cop dog sniffs out guns hidden under pile of leaves by alleged farm burglars

May 2nd 2021 at 14:12
A police dog sniffed out firearms and other stolen goods hidden under a heap of tree leaves by thieves in Worcester, Western Cape.
According to police spokesperson Brigadier Novela Potelwa, police were responding to a burglary and theft at a farm in the Nuy Valley area early on Sunday.
“On their way to the scene, the K-9 unit members were alerted by farm-watch members of an empty safe next to the road,” Potelwa said. “Utilising the K-9 unit’s explosives dog, the members followed tracks leading to a dry river bank.
The canine reacted to a pile of leaves and sat on it.” Upon closer inspection, police discovered three rifles and ammunition, tag light and a laptop buried under the leaves. The alleged thieves managed to evade arrest. Police are investigating.

‘We found a way to win’ – White satisfied with victory

May 2nd 2021 at 14:09

 

Bulls coach Jake White wants his team to be flexible, so he was satisfied that they were able to ‘win ugly’ in their opening Rainbow Cup SA match against the Lions at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday night.

White had before the game promised an attacking approach if conditions were dry, and the Bulls started superbly, keeping ball in hand for two minutes from the kickoff and then scoring the opening try.

But thereafter they were constrained by a watertight, rapidly approaching Lions defence and the soft underfoot conditions, only managing to cross the tryline again in the 66th and 80th minutes for a 22-9 win.

ALSO READ: Massive blow for Lions as Swanepoel faces injury hiatus

The victory and a bonus point would also have been in the bag much earlier if the Bulls hadn’t had three tries disallowed due to captain’s referrals.

“Sometimes you’ve got to win these sort of games and we found a way to win,” White said after fhe Bulls’ 13th successive victory at home.

“The Lions were very good at the breakdown. They tried to slow us down all the time. To have four tries disallowed – I think the yellow card for a deliberate knock-on could maybe have been a penalty try – was helluva frustrating because you keep thinking you’ve put a bit of distance between you and the opposition.

“But we know everyone will be coming for us because we’ve won the last two trophies and today we had to vasbyt for the win.”

ALSO READ: Bulls made to work hard for victory against Lions

The Bulls dominated possession but at times they suffered from the rugby equivalent of bulimia – having an over-abundance of ball and generally keeping it in hand meant they also coughed up a lot of possession as the Lions dominated the breakdowns.

“We will work on not being sucked into playing too much rugby. Sometimes we need to be a bit smarterm,” White said.

“But we did end up playing into the wind in both halves because the wind turned… it was a bit extraordinary, something we’re not used to here. But it’s exciting times with guys like Elrigh Louw and Janko Swanepoel just out of the U-21s, Mornay Smith is a young tighthead, Joe van Zyl, Stravino Jacobs and David Kriel are all young.

“But if you have too many youngsters then they can start to panic, so it’s nice for them to learn from the seniors exactly how to close off a game.”

Alleged CT gangster escapes arrest after residents pelt cops with stones

May 2nd 2021 at 12:53

Police officers came under attack in Kensington, Cape Town, when they tried to apprehend a suspected gang member on Sunday.

According to police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk, officers saw the well-known suspect walking with an exposed firearm in Matroos Plein, Kensington and apprehended him.

The suspect then started to scream for help while being arrested.

“Approximately 30 unknown members of the community came out of their homes and threatened to shoot the police members if the suspect was not released. The community members started throwing stones at the SAPS members and vehicles, thereby aiding and abetting the gunman to escape,” Van Wyk said.

The alleged gangster managed to escape as residents pelted officers and state vehicles with stones.

The firearm confiscated from him was found to be linked to a criminal case in Kimberley in the Northern Cape.

“Incidents of violent crimes in the area as well as attacks on police are becoming a common occurrence and that is of grave concern to the SAPS management. Community members are reminded to respect the rule of law,” Van Wyk said.

ALSO READ: Speak out against gangsterism

No shots were fired and no further arrests were made.

In a separate and unrelated incident, eight people were arrested for allegedly robbing a Post Office of an undisclosed amount of cash in Constantia on Thursday.

Officers received a tip-off about the vehicles used in the robbery.

“The vehicles were stopped for purposes of conducting a search on Friday in Hout Bay. Eight males aged between 25 and 32 were arrested with two imitation firearms confiscated and handed in as exhibits. A case of possession of imitation firearms utilised in the execution of a crime was opened at Hout Bay SAPS.”

The suspects are expected to appear in the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

More international aid lands in India as death toll hits record

May 2nd 2021 at 12:21

International aid to alleviate India’s dire oxygen shortage arrived in the South Asian nation on Sunday, as its coronavirus death toll climbed to a grim new record.

The country of 1.3 billion reported 3,689 coronavirus deaths on Sunday — the highest single-day rise yet in the pandemic, with nearly 400,000 new cases of Covid-19 registered across India.

Surges in Brazil and Canada have also highlighted the persistent threat of the pandemic, with the global death toll approaching 3.2 million even as many nations ramp up vaccination drives.

India expanded its vaccination programme to all adults on Saturday, but many of its states are struggling with shortages despite an export freeze for shots produced domestically.

The latest surge in deaths came as medical equipment from abroad — including oxygen-generation plants — was flown into the capital New Delhi as part of a huge international effort.

“People are sometimes dying in front of the hospitals. They have no more oxygen. Sometimes (they are dying) in their cars,” said Germany’s ambassador to India, Walter J. Lindner, as 120 ventilators arrived late Saturday.

ALSO READ: UK sends 1,000 more ventilators to Covid-stricken India

Long queues were seen at vaccination centres in Indian cities this weekend, with people desperate to be inoculated against a disease that has overwhelmed the healthcare system as well as crematoriums and graveyards.

Social media platforms have been flooded with desperate pleas from people looking for oxygen cylinders, medicines and hospital beds as the Covid-19 wave causes widespread shortages.

The United States, Russia and Britain sent emergency supplies including oxygen generators, face masks and vaccines.

Aid from France reached India on Sunday, including eight oxygen generator plants and 28 ventilators, adding to the ventilators from Germany that arrived the previous night.

New Delhi, one of the hardest-hit parts of India, extended its lockdown by a week on Saturday, and the eastern state of Odisha has also ordered a shutdown.

Anthony Fauci, the top US pandemic advisor, said in comments published Saturday that the whole of India should go into lockdown to fight this wave.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has resisted imposing a national shutdown but many states have imposed heavy restrictions.

A growing list of countries have cut flights from India, with Nigeria on Sunday banning entry to all travellers who have been in the country in the last two weeks, though Nigerians and those transiting in India will be exempt.

Alarm bells are also ringing in other countries in densely populated South Asia.

In Sri Lanka daily infections hit a record on Saturday, with authorities imposing further curbs on movement and activities in parts of the island nation.

“We could face an India-type crisis very soon unless we arrest the current trend of infections,” said chief epidemiologist Sudath Samaraweera.

Known global infections are approaching 152 million, and fresh waves have also shaken many countries in the Americas.

Brazil, the worst-hit Latin American nation, has crossed 400,000 Covid-19 deaths — second only to the United States — with many of its hospitals pushed to the brink of collapse.

And in Canada, the epicentre is in the most populous province Ontario, where the surge has been so intense that the government sent in the military and the Red Cross to help care for critical patients.

Ontario’s healthcare system is near breaking point, said intensive care nurse Farial Faquiry at Toronto’s Humber River Hospital.

“We’re stretched thin,” Faquiry told AFP.

“We’re tired and exhausted. Just exhausted.”

– Party-goers revolt –

Although the Covid-19 threat remains in sharp focus in crisis spots around the world, populations in many countries are growing weary of virus measures.

Anti-restriction protesters gathered in several European countries on Saturday, including Finland, Sweden, Belgium and Germany.

Belgian police arrested 132 people as they used tear gas and water cannon to break up a banned anti-lockdown party in a Brussels park on the weekend, an official report said Sunday.

One partygoer was knocked out by a water cannon and 14 others were slightly injured — including one struck by a police horse — as riot police brutally dispersed the party on Saturday in scenes echoing a similar gathering in the park a month before.

In France, too, hundreds of people flouted a coronavirus curfew over the weekend with underground parties in at least two cities, while police managed to prevent organisers from staging a mass rave in Paris.

Miller races to second MotoGP victory in Jerez

May 2nd 2021 at 11:55

 

Australian Jack Miller rode to only his second MotoGP victory in Jerez on Sunday, with Ducati team-mate Francesco Bagnaia finishing second.

Miller, who underwent surgery early in April, took the lead when pre-race championship leader Fabio Quartararo started to lose pace midway through the race.

On a track where Ducati had not won since 2006, Bagnaia followed Miller home to take the championship lead from Quartararo.

Italian Franco Morbidelli was third on a Yamaha.

Frenchman Quartararo finished 13th and doubled over, seemingly in pain, at the finish.

A great day for @jackmilleraus fans! ????????

Here’s how you reacted to the #SpanishGP ???????? #MotoGP | ????https://t.co/iPMQ6BTN4U

— MotoGP™???? (@MotoGP) May 2, 2021


Miller started and finished his immediate post-race interview in tears.

“It’s a flood of emotions: happy sad, everything,” he said.

“I thought when Fabio went past OK he’s got a bit better pace,” Miller said. “I thought he was going to bolt.”

“I didn’t expect him to come back to me he did.”

“He started to drop really off when I passed him.”

“There were still 12-13 laps left and I was thinking that’s a long time out in front by myself but I was able to do it.”

Bagnaia followed Miller home to give Ducati the first two places and take the championship lead.

“I’m happy,” he said. “This was a really tough track for us, so to finish one two is a really big result for us,” he said.

Japanese rider Takaaki Nakagami (Honda-LCR) was fourth and Spanish world champion Joan Mir (Suzuki) was fifth.

Spaniard Marc Marquez, who after crashing his Honda in practice on Saturday, crashed again in the warm-up on Sunday, finished a creditable ninth in his second Grand Prix after nine months out with injury.

Morbidelli scored his first podium of the season.

“It was pretty easy,”  he said. “I just gave more than the maximum, always. I was really on the limit. I risk a lot. Finally we were rewarded. This podium feels just like a victory.”

Daily Covid-19 update: 1632 new cases, death toll increases by 56

May 1st 2021 at 15:26

As of Saturday, the cumulative number of detected Covid-19 cases is 1,582,842 with 1632 new cases identified, Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has confirmed.

The total number of Covid-19 related deaths was 56, with 12 from Eastern Cape, 20 from Free State, 11 from Gauteng, 2 from KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), 6 from Limpopo, 0 from Mpumalanga, 0 from North West, 3 from Northern Cape and 2 from Western Cape.

This brings the total number of Covid-19 related deaths to 54,406.

Recoveries now stand at 1,506,732 representing a recovery rate of 95%.

A total of 10,682,827 tests have been completed with 27,957 new tests conducted since the last report.

The total number of vaccines that have been administered stands at 318,670.

#COVID19 Statistics in SA as at 01 May.

Use the COVID Alert SA app to protect yourself, your loved ones and your community. Start using this privacy preserving app today. Add your phone to the fight! Download the Covid Alert SA app now! https://t.co/8YKEqaiiRF pic.twitter.com/F1Jlv8ugTn

— Dr Zweli Mkhize (@DrZweliMkhize) May 1, 2021

Bulls made to work hard for victory against Lions

May 1st 2021 at 15:09

The Bulls may have scored as early as the second minute, but for more than an hour they then struggled to go around or get through a ferocious Lions defence, eventually struggling to a 22-9 win in their Rainbow Cup match at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday night.

The Bulls began superbly, retaining possession from the kickoff for two minutes before flyhalf Chris Smith jinked and slipped though some tackles to score the opening try. Thereafter, however, the Bulls found themselves in a tremendous tussle, struggling to cope with the Lions’ line-speed in defence and their aggressive targeting of the breakdowns.

Only once in the whole game was there a short kick over the top of the rapidly advancing Lions defence and it nearly resulted in centre Cornal Hendricks scoring. But the Bulls did not use that tactic or the grubber nearly enough. And for all their possession, the Lions were dominant at the breakdowns so it almost always came to nothing.

Smith added a penalty to the conversion of his try and Lions flyhalf Fred Zeilinga kicked two penalties as the Bulls went into halftime 10-6 ahead. The Lions made a good start to the second half, allowing Zeilinga to close the gap to just one point with another penalty in the  44th minute.

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The final quarter belonged to the Bulls though as they camped in the Lions half.

After 10 minutes in the 22 they eventually broke through, helped by EW Viljoen’s yellow card for a deliberate knock-on, when replacement prop Lizo Gqoboka won a turnover to win a penalty, and then produced a mini-break before offloading to substitute scrumhalf Zak Burger to race over under the poles for the match-winning try.

The never-say-die Lions were better than the final scoreline suggested, conceding a try right at the death as flank Elrigh Louw powered through several tackles to score. Hendricks had fought hard on the gainline in the build-up, before offloading to Burger, who darted well and then found Louw with a neat offload.

But the Bulls will point to having three tries disallowed by the TMO and the soft underfoot conditions as having put paid to their more ambitious plans.

Scorers

Bulls: Tries – Chris Smith, Zak Burger, Elrigh Louw. Conversions – Smith, Morne Steyn. Penalty – Smith.

Lions: Penalties – Fred Zeilinga (3).

 

Lotto and Lotto Plus results: Saturday, 01 May 2021

May 1st 2021 at 15:00
  • The Lotto jackpot was estimated at R13 million
  • The Lotto Plus 1 jackpot was estimated at R4.8 million
  • The Lotto Plus 2 jackpot was estimated at R1 million

Make your dreams come true by playing the National Lotto. PHANDA, PUSHA, PLAY!

The Lotto results are published as soon as possible after the draw and confirmation, guaranteeing the quickest and easiest way for you to check your ticket.

While great care has been taken to ensure accuracy, The Citizen can take no responsibility for any error in the results and suggest verifying the numbers on the National Lotto website.

Here are the Lotto and Lotto Plus results for Wednesday, 28 April 2021: 

Lotto: 10, 11, 13, 20, 43, 51. Bonus: 4.

Lotto Plus 1: 24, 26, 30, 31, 36, 40. Bonus: 14. 

Lotto Plus 2: 9, 13, 31, 33, 37, 48. Bonus: 28.

Check out previous Lotto results here. For more details and to verify the numbers, visit the National Lottery website.

When do South African national Lottery ticket sales close? 

Lottery outlets close at 8.30pm on the day of a draw which happens at 9pm. The terms and conditions may differ from other service outlets. Visit www.nationallottery.co.za for more information.

How much do I need to play Lotto?

Lotto entries cost R5 per board including VAT, with Lotto Plus 1 and 2 each costing an additional R2.50 per board. There are also other ways to play Lotto, including through your mobile and even through certain participating banks (T&Cs apply).

Visit www.nationallottery.co.za and go to the How to Play section to find out more.

Lindani Myeni death: ‘Senseless murder of black people by police continues in US’

May 1st 2021 at 13:45

KwaZulu-Natal Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza demanded justice for the shooting of Lindani Myeni, allegedly by US police, adding that the US government should “hang its head in shame” as it had become a slaughterhouse for black people.

Myeni’s body arrived at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport on Saturday. A prayer session was held at the airport.

Khoza said Myeni would not become another statistic of a black man killed by the US police.

Former US president Barack Obama and incumbent Joe Biden must ensure that those who killed Myeni face the law, she said.

“The hostility displayed by the trigger-happy Honolulu police has revived wounds,” she said.

RELATED: Lindani Myeni’s body arrives in SA as US police release recording of 911 call

“Today we are supposed to celebrate Workers’ Day, instead we are here at OR Tambo, mourning our son of the soil whose shining light was diminished by the brutal hands of policemen.”

She added: “This is a sad indictment on Americans that their country continues to be associated with the senseless murder of black people by their police. The murder of our son has reminded us of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and public lynching of black people in America, and South Africa’s recent past when black people suffered untold brutality at the hands of an apartheid regime and its security forces. The time has come to be vocal and condemning the [violence] of the police who kill people of black descent.”

Family member Pastor B Nhleko said Myeni used to show her his rugby skills.

“He would mimic a tackle showing me how he plays rugby, but now he won’t be able to do that with me again.”

She thanked Myeni’s wife, Lindsay, for fighting to have her husband’s remains brought to South Africa.

Nhleko said Lindsay was planning to spend time in South Africa.

“Lindsay has brought piles of her luggage and other stuff with her because she still need to stay here. She said she would be happy to spend time here so that the two children know where they come from… she wants her firstborn, Ntsizwa, to attend school here in South Africa.”

Myeni will be buried in KwaZulu-Natal, his home province.

The 29-year-old former rugby player was shot multiple times, allegedly by Honolulu police in Hawaii.

In a recorded telephone call to 911 – obtained by eNCA – a woman is heard screaming and crying that a man was at her house.

The woman is heard in the recording saying Myeni was unarmed. She tells the operator that “he says he [Myeni] is from South Africa”. She responds that she doesn’t know Myeni.

The operator then tells her that police are on the way. The arrival of the police ended with Myeni being shot multiple times.

His death drew widespread condemnation in the US where police killing of civilians led to #BlackLivesMatter protests across the US.

Lindsay plans to sue the Honolulu police department.

Nigeria kidnap kingpin killed in clash with rival gang

May 1st 2021 at 12:47

A Nigerian bandit chief who led the kidnapping of hundreds of schoolchildren has been killed in armed clashes with a rival gang, days after reneging on an amnesty deal with authorities, sources told AFP.

Awwalun Daudawa led the abduction of more than 500 students from Government Science Secondary School Kankara last December.

It was one of a series of mass abductions by heavily armed criminal gangs who have become an increasing security challenge in northwest and central Nigeria.

On Thursday a Zamfara state government official told AFP Daudawa had reneged on a peace pact he made in February and returned to lead his men in the forest.

“Daudawa was killed along with four of his commanders Friday afternoon during a gun fight with a rival gang in Dumburum forest on the border with Katsina state,” a Zamfara government official said.

“He led his men on a revenge mission to avenge the death of two of his men by the rival gang during a failed raid on one of his camps last month,” said the official.

ALSO READ: University staffer killed, students kidnapped by Nigerian gunmen

In February Daudawa along with six comrades surrendered to Zamfara state governor Bello Matawalle in his office where he handed over weapons, saying he had renounced crime, as part of the amnesty to bandits to end the cycle of violence.

– Ambushed and gunned down –

But sources said Daudawa only surrendered a fraction of his weapons and maintained contact with his gangs in the forest.

Earlier this month Daudawa left his lodging in Zamfara state capital Gusau on the pretext of meeting some criminal gangs to convince them to accept a government amnesty offer and release some hostages, according to an official.

“Daudawa has been killed along with his four commanders during fighting with the men of rival bandits,” a source with deep knowledge on the activities of bandits told AFP.

“He was ambushed and gunned down while trying to take away the herd of the rival gang,” said the source.

It was not clear what impact the death of Daudawa would have on the deadly violence cattle thieves and kidnappers have unleashed in northwestern Nigeria.

Some of the Kankara schoolchildren had escaped during the December kidnapping and more than 300 more were released days later after negotiations with local officials.

State authorities always deny any ransom payments were made.

Daudawa, 43, was an armed robber and a cattle rustler before he added gun-running and kidnapping for ransom to his criminal portfolio.

He was known to have ties with Boko Haram jihadists and acted as their gunrunner, selling weapons they seize from Nigerian security personnel in the northeast to bandits in the northwest.

RHOD’s Kgomotso Ndungane comes clean on why she left

May 1st 2021 at 12:24

The absence of Kgomotso Ndungane in season one reunion of the Real Housewives of Durban (RHOD) was felt by viewers this week, with many wondering why she didn’t pitch up.

The reality show, streaming on Showmax premiered its last episode, of what many would say was a very successful first season of the housewives franchise.

Ndungane was a clear absentee when the other four women Ayanda Ncwane, Kgomotso Ndungane, Nonkanyiso Conco, Sorisha Naidoo and Nonku Williams appeared to talk things, housewives.

One of the most revealing moments during the reality show was Ncwane tribalist comments towards Ndgungane. Appearing on Newzroom Afrika on Saturday morning, Kgomotso said the tribalistic comments were made on a “personal level” and “derogatory.”

Ncwane was heard telling LaConco that Ndungane wasn’t a black woman, rather a Tshwane woman. Ncwane, a Zulu, further said because Kgmotso is not Zulu and doesn’t speak it, “akayena umuntu”. Translated, she is not a person.

READ NEXT: Are you still with Jacob Zuma? RHOD’s LaConco dodges answering

“In South Africa, we live in a very diverse country. A country where we have come far as a nation… The last thing you need going forward as a nation is to also be subjected to tribalism,” Kgomotso said.

She further went on to say, the show is set in Durban and this should not mean it focuses on one ethnic group but rather a national platform.

“You shouldn’t be saying things like that because they become very offensive to South Africa as a whole. Because you show, you are not including other tribes or ethnic groups in your thinking.”

Addressing the other elephant in the room, her departure. The businesswoman said her goal when she joined wasn’t to be part of many seasons.

“My objective was to do one season, move on and do other things. For me, the most important thing was the platform. If you have any sort of recognition or platform where people can look into your life, it is actually your duty to influence that platform positively…

“I was never going to be on season two and everyone was leaving doing other things,”  Kgomotso says her exiting wasnt a strategic move. Adding that during filming there were some personal issues that happened in her life and she wasnt in the “right space.”

“I left with a lot of grace and I pride myself on that.” Her appearance on RHOD was portrayed as one of the mean girls. She says she is not in control of how they produce or edit the show and she was just herself.

Man City on brink of title glory after beating Palace

May 1st 2021 at 11:38

 

Manchester City are within touching distance of the Premier League title after Sergio Aguero and Ferran Torres sealed a 2-0 win at Crystal Palace on Saturday.

Pep Guardiola’s side sit 13 points clear at the top and will be crowned champions if second-placed Manchester United lose against Liverpool on Sunday.

After a tepid first half in south London, it was fitting that Aguero — the architect of so many big moments in City’s history — should open the scoring with a typically lethal finish.

Torres killed off Palace two minutes later as City eased to an 11th successive away victory in the Premier League, equalling the English top-flight record.

Even if United do not slip up against Liverpool at Old Trafford, City have four matches left to secure the one win they need to clinch the title, starting with next Saturday’s home game against Chelsea.

It is a matter of when not if City add the Premier League to the League Cup they won against Tottenham in April.

City were languishing in 14th place in late November but a blistering run since then has carried them to the brink of a third title in four seasons.

The treble chasers could also add the Champions League to that haul.

On Tuesday, City will attempt to reach their first ever Champions League final when they defend a 2-1 lead in the semi-final second leg against Paris Saint Germain.

This was City’s sixth successive game away from the Etihad Stadium and by the time they return to Manchester to play PSG, they will have clocked up more than 3,500 miles on the road in just three weeks.

Guardiola believes that gruelling schedule has made City’s success this season “extra special” and this win was another tribute to their tenacious attitude.

– Guardiola joy –

The City boss made eight changes from the midweek win in Paris, with only Ederson, Rodri and Joao Cancelo keeping their places as Aguero, Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling came in.

Aguero was making only his sixth league start of an injury-plagued season for City’s record goalscorer, who has announced he will leave in the summer.

All the changes left City looking disjointed in a scrappy first half.

Torres met Benjamin Mendy’s cross with a deflected effort that looped over the bar.

Sterling’s poor form has been hidden by City’s march towards the title and the England winger was guilty of taking one touch too many after bursting into the Palace six-yard box as a good chance went begging.

Ederson had to make a superb save to keep City level when he stretched to block Christian Benteke’s close-range effort with his legs.

Aguero couldn’t hit the target from 10 yards before Jesus was correctly ruled offside after he volleyed home from Fernandinho’s cross.

It was the first time in 21 games that City had failed to have a shot on target in the first half.

But City are too potent to be subdued for long and they played with far more intensity after the interval.

Aguero had been anonymous for long periods, but he rolled back the years to break the deadlock in the 57th minute.

Running onto Mendy’s pass, Aguero took a touch inside the Palace area before smashing a half-volley into the roof of the net from 10 yards.

Aguero’s fourth goal of the season — his 258th for the club — put City back in their groove and Torres doubled the lead 84 seconds later.

Aguero, Jesus and Sterling exchanged a flurry of passes, teeing up Torres for a fine low finish from the edge of the area.

Guardiola’s joyous fist-pumping celebration underlined the magnitude of the moment as City closed in on their latest title triumph.

Chiefs squander two-goal lead to draw at Celtic

May 1st 2021 at 11:23

 

Kaizer Chiefs blew a 2-0 lead to end up sharing the points with Bloemfontein Celtic as their DStv Premiership clash at the Dr Petrus Molemela Stadium ended 2-2 on Saturday afternoon.

ALSO READ: Kaizer Chiefs braced for ‘tough’ Simba

It was not the first time Amakhosi had taken a lead and gone on to concede and end up not getting a result.

Chiefs had the start they’d have wanted as Happy Mashiane scored with a fourth minute free kick. The score was increased just eight minutes later as Erick Mathoho headed in from a corner.

While Amakhosi tried to pin Celtic back, they didn’t cower and took the fight right back and cut the deficit in the 22nd minute through Neo Maema.

Amakhosi came close to a third two minutes later, but Jackson Mabokgwane was equal to task and thwarted Mashiane’s effort from a free kick.

Celtic forced Daniel Akpeyi into some good saves towards the end of the first half, as they looked to go into the break all square.

That didn’t happen, but it didn’t take the Mangaung side long to get back into the game as they scored just eight minutes after the break. They were awarded a penalty and Victor Letsoalo converted to make it 2-2.

After that both sides tried to find the winner but found the going tough, especially up front. And the draw was perhaps a fair and just result as both had come from defeats in their last outing.

The result left Amakhosi outside the top eight with, TS Galaxy having won against Cape Town City at the same time.

For Celtic, the result will be most worrying because they are now flirting with relegation, with a mere eight points separating them from Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila, who are second from bottom in the relegation play-off spot.

‘Current vaccination pace, it will take over 10 years for SA to reach herd immunity’

May 1st 2021 at 11:18

South Africa has the highest number of Covid-19 cases on the African continent. It has more than 50 000 reported deaths. This may be an underestimate, looking at excess death statistics. The economic cost of the pandemic is evident on the streets and healthcare facilities have been under considerable strain during the waves of the pandemic.

It was with much relief, elation and a renewed sense of hope that many healthcare workers enrolled in the Johnson and Johnson vaccination trial in mid-February and received their much-anticipated vaccination.

But the relief and elation have given way to frustration and disillusionment. The country’s rollout is proceeding at a pace much slower than expected.

To date just over 293 000, South Africans have had received their jab, which represents only a fraction of the 1.25 million healthcare workers who are first in line. This adds up to about 0.5% of the general population. The initial target of having 67% of the country’s citizens vaccinated by the end of 2021 is now unlikely to be achieved.

The new rollout plan promises to vaccinate 1.5 million by the end of May 2021. Phase 2 is set to happen between May and October 2021 with the aim of an additional 13 million vaccinated in that time frame.

ALSO READ: Pregnant and breastfeeding moms can now get Covid-19 vaccine

Several factors have contributed to South Africa’s halting start. These include global health inequality, South Africa’s delay in joining the global race for procurement, delays in the rollout plan as well as uncertainty around efficacy and side effects of vaccines that were procured.

At the current vaccination pace, it will take over a decade for South Africa to reach herd immunity, with many lives lost along the way.

Vaccine hiccups

The biggest challenge has been access. Like other developing countries, South Africa has really struggled to get doses.

The WHO director, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, put it succinctly when he said:

Even as they speak the language of equitable access, some countries and companies continue to prioritise bilateral deals, … driving up prices and attempting to jump to the front of the queue. This is wrong.

Ghebreyesus was referring to the fact that developing country governments have procured and hoarded vaccines for their own populations. Even before many of the Covid-19 vaccines had received final approval, some countries had procured several million doses of those that held promise.

An additional factor was South Africa’s slow start. The government has been criticised for not actively engaging in vaccine procurement through other avenues at an earlier stage. By mid-January 2021 the country’s participation in the COVAX vaccine scheme only secured enough doses for around 10% of the population.

On top of this, there has been a series of problems with vaccines South Africa managed to secure. And the evolution of new variants and uncertainties around the effi