South Africa

FIVE MINUTES: South Africa

By Daily Maverick Staff Reporter 2 August 2013

A round-up of the day’s news from South Africa.

KZN MEC FOR HEALTH RESCUES HIT-AND-RUN VICTIMS

KwaZulu-Natal’s MEC for health rescued three part-time lifeguards after they had been hit by a bakkie on the Umzumbe Bridge, and ignored by passing drivers. Dr Sibongiseni Dlomo, whose convoy crossed the bridge an hour after the hit and run, stopped to help the young men as they lay on the edge of the road, the Daily News reported. Nhlanhla Mqadi, Vumani Makhanya, and Siyabonga Mafuna were all injured, and Mqadi had both legs amputated. The three worked part-time as lifeguards at Hibberdene’s Three Tower 13 station, walking for an hour-and-a-half every weekend to and from work. The night of the hit and run, they noticed a bakkie being driven at high speed and thought the driver might be drunk. The bakkie hit them, made a U-turn, and passed them again.

AMCU WALKS OUT OF CCMA GOLD SECTOR MEDIATION

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) has walked out of talks at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), BDlive reported. The CCMA was mediating a gold sector wage dispute with four unions, including Amcu. The NUM, with two-thirds representation, is demanding increases of between 15% and 60%. The United Association of South Africa wants 18% and Solidarity is aiming for 10%. Amcu has demanded a 150% rise for entry-level underground workers. The gold producers spokeswoman, Charmane Russell, told BDlive there was “some misunderstanding on timing and process”. She said talks would resume on 6 August.

MINISTER UNVEILS PRASA’S B-BBEE BIDDERS IN FLEET RENEWAL PROJECT

Khiphunyawo Rail, which is currently active in the rail sector, new entrant Community Rail Services and black investor, Elgin-Identity Rail Corporation, have been chosen as the empowerment bidders for the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s rolling stock fleet renewal programme. Transport minister Dipuo Peters said the creation of job opportunities, production of local content, skills development and community upliftment remained the essential ingredients in the procurement process. She said it was government’s responsibility to ensure its “resource injection will yield maximum benefit for the citizens of South Africa”. The Gibela Rail Transportation consortium, led by French multi-national company Alstom, was selected as the preferred bidder in December 2012.

JUDGE LEGODI LEAVING ARMS DEAL COMMISSION FOR ‘PERSONAL REASONS’

President Jacob Zuma has met the news of the resignation of Judge Francis Legodi from the arms deal inquiry with “deep regret”, the Presidency said in a statement. Zuma appointed a commission of inquiry into allegations of fraud, corruption, impropriety or Irregularity in the controversial arms deal in November 2011. The presidency said it had consulted with Legodi on the reasons for his resignation, saying he left for “personal reasons” which he requested remain confidential. Zuma said he was satisfied Legodi’s departure would “not impact negatively on the integrity of the Commission nor any of its functions, albeit that the timing poses certain challenges”.

WHY WAS NORMAL PROGRAMMING INTERRUPTED FOR ZUMA SPEECH?

The Democratic Alliance wants answers from the SABC’s acting head of news, Jimi Matthews, on why the SABC interrupted prime time programming to cover a speech by President Jacob Zuma, live. National spokesman Mmusi Maimane said it was “unclear” why the speech was given live coverage. “There was no new announcement in the speech, or indeed anything that would ordinarily be considered newsworthy,” Maimane said, adding that the broadcast was “political abuse of the national broadcaster”. Zuma appeared live on the SABC’s 24-hour news channel at its launch on Thursday.

EFF SETTLES ON POLICY OF LAND GRABS

Anyone who resists the surrender of land will meet the determination of the people, says Economic Freedom Fighters leader, Julius Malema. The former president of the ANC Youth League told a media briefing the EFF would transfer all land to the state without compensation despite criticism that this would undermine the economy, Sapa reported. Malema said the people of Zimbabwe had started land grabs and President Robert Mugabe had supported them. Agriculture minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson recently warned EFF that government would not allow anyone to “people to sow discord in our farming communities for party-political gains.”

RESURGENT PAGAD COULD ‘ERADICATE’ CAPE’S DRUG TRADE

People Against Gangsterism and Drugs says it could could eradicate Cape Town’s drug trade on the Cape Flats in six months. The organisation told the Cape Argus it could be done “without spilling a single drop of blood or firing a single bullet” if the media and police would stop undermining it. Chairman Abdus-Salaam Ebrahim told the newspaper the organisation would protect and support members of the community who exercise their “divine right” to defend themselves through the use of violence. On Tuesday evening, a gang of men wearing balaclavas petrol-bombed a known drug den, killing a resident. But Pagad said it was not responsible for the attack.

GOLDIN, BLOOM KILLERS DENIED PAROLE

The men who killed actor Brett Goldin and his friend, fashion designer Richard Bloom, in 2006 have been denied parole – for now. Eyewitness News reported that Jade Wyngaard and Nurshad Davids could apply for parole again in December. Goldin’s mother, Denise, told EWN that every time the parole situation came up it affected the families’ lives “badly”. She said it was “a bit of a disappointment that there isn’t a final decision but if the parole board sees fit to do this we just have to accept and go along with it”. The pair has been denied parole on three previous occasions. Wyngaard and Davids are serving a 15-year sentence hijacking, robbing and murdering Goldin and Bloom after they left a party in Camps Bay. DM

Photo: Julius Malema (REUTERS)

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