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Cape derby proves to be an exciting tournament
17 January 2018, 9:24 PM

The Cape derby between Ajax Cape Town and Cape Town City is hitting fever pitch in the Mother City.

The Citizens are lying pretty in the third place on the ABSA Premiership log with the Urban Warriors in a relegation battle in 13th spot. However, a derby is a derby with no quarter asked or given.

The two Cape Town clubs are still on opposite sides of the league standings and City have won all three derbies, but coach, Benni McCarthy and club owner, John Comitis want to maintain their dominance to prove that they are the best team in Cape Town and that the fans will come out in their droves.

John Comitis, Cape Town City owner says, “The entire first tier is open 20 000 ticket sales are much higher than I’ve ever seen in the derbies and I’m over confident of a capacity crowd.”

City have lost the services of Lehohlonolo Majoro to Wits, Aubrey Ngoma to Sundowns and will also lose captain, Robyn Johannes to Wits at the end of the season.

But they have also strengthened the squad with defender, Kwanda Mngonyama from Sundowns, Suprise Raleni from Swedish club Helsborgs IF and Kenyan sensation Masoud Juma.

Cape Town City captain Robyn Johannes, says, “We are expecting a tough game. Ajax have a new coach so a new way of playing we have to bring our A game as we always do and games like this don’t need any motivation.

Added to the mix has been the fall out of the Comitis and Efstathiou families who now run Ajax and the derby has all the ingredients of a match boiling over.

Cape Town City owner John Comitis, says, “To me what has created more flavour to the mix is that Muhsin has joined them he has been very vocal in supporting me in person, our club in the sense now he is on the other side just puts more salt in the mix.”

The Cape derby should be a cracker.

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W. Cape ANC claims to have more evidence against De Lille
17 January 2018, 9:12 PM

The African National Congress (ANC) in the Western Cape says it will furnish the Auditor General with more damning evidence of maladministration in the City of Cape Town dating back as far as 2013.

The party says it believes the office was misled before allegedly clearing Mayor Patricia De Lille of any wrongdoing regarding upgrades to her private home recently.

Cape Town, the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) flagship municipality, portrayed as the city with a brand of good governance, but the scramble within the DA as well as council on allegations of mismanagement and maladministration have caused tensions for all the wrong reasons.

Opposition parties are not taking the information lying down.

ANC leader in the Cape Town Council, Xolani Sotashe, says they will meet the auditor general to discuss the matter further.

“What we are saying as the ANC, we want the AG because what the AG does they base their report on the information that they are given. We found a situation as the ANC where the AG was misled.

“These clean audits that we have been getting for the past three/ four financial years they must be reviewed, because we have picked up that there is a lot of information that was not brought to the attention of the AG.”

Mayor Patricia de Lille has maintained that the auditor general has vindicated her on allegations that she used taxpayers’ money for upgrades to her home.

She’s welcomed investigations into her conduct, but wants a chance to defend herself.

The ANC in the Western Cape says it will not get involved in the DA’s internal squabbles in the city.

Acting ANC Chairperson in the Western Cape, Khaya Magaxa says , “The witch hunt instituted by the DA’s federal council against De Lille is clearly as a result of De Lille breaking rank with the old established white monopoly patronage network of Zille in an attempt to create her own coloured inspired network where tenders are concerned. While we welcome the investigation into De Lille we know that the thirst for De Lille’s blood has more to do with fighting over tenders.”

However, the ANC says De Lille, her deputy and everyone implicated in on-going investigations must be removed from their positions.

De Lille’s office has not been immediately available for comment.

Sharks upbeat about 2018 Super Rugby season
17 January 2018, 8:07 PM

The Sharks head coach Robert du Preez says there’s great energy in his squad ahead of the tough 2018 Super Rugby season. He’s banking on a team with a good mixture of youth and experience to produce the results this season.

The Sharks are not taking the 2018 rugby season lying down. They’re sweating it out in the sweltering Durban heat stretching themselves to the limited.

They are sharpening their skills ahead of a tough couple of months of rugby.

Sharks head coach, Robert du Preez says, “We’ve got some really talented youngsters and these guys haven’t looked out of place. A guy like Pepsi Buthelezi, who is the Sharks under 18 captain last year and JJ Van Der Mescht, they’ve trained with us right through pre-season and they haven’t looked out of place, it’s great to have a mix of the youth and the more experienced guys.”

The Sharks are heading into the 2018 Super Rugby competition with a pep in their step, but say they want to take it one step at a time.

Sharks player, Franco Marais says, “So obviously we are playing New Zealand sides this year and we got two weeks in Australia and two weeks in New Zealand and I think we need to take it week for week. I know it’s an old cliché but Super Rugby is a tough competition and you can’t aim to far in the future, but for us a home a quarter final is definitely one of our goals and hopefully a home final.”

They’ll be playing two warm-up matches prior to the competition.

On the 27th of January they meet the Bulls in Polokwane and on the 3rd of February they head to Hong Kong, where they’ll take on Racing 92.

On Saturday, Sharks fans are in for a treat. They’ll get an opportunity to meet the entire squad at Kings Park.

U.S, North Korea tensions continue
17 January 2018, 8:00 PM

The United States has warned North Korea it will pursue a military option if Pyongyang fails to engage in discussions. The warning comes after a meeting between the U.S. and Canada, which China says was one that displayed a Cold War mentality.

Tension between the U.S and Korea continues with both countries sounding threats against each other.

Now the U.S. has warned of a military option.  U.S Secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, says: “If North Korea does not choose the pathway of engagement, discussion, negotiation, then they themselves will trigger an option.”

It’s a strong message from U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to Pyongyan, at a meeting in Vancouver where 20 nations gathered to talk about the regime’s weapons program and enforce tougher sanctions against the North.

Both China and Russia were not at the meeting and diplomats say any agreements made in Vancouver are limited at best.

The meeting also comes as the two Koreas sit down for their first talks after two years of soaring tensions, but across the globe warnings that the world shouldn’t be fooled by Pyongyang playing nice.

Japanese foreign minister Taro Kono, says: “It is not the time to ease pressure or reward North Korea.”

The majority of nations in Vancouver supported South Korea during the Korean War and the North’s allies, China and Russia, have slammed the meeting calling it an example of what they refer to as “Cold War”-era thinking.

China’s foreign ministry, Lu Kang, elaborates: “This can only create divisions within the international community and damage the joint efforts made to promote a proper settlement to the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula. The main channel to handle and resolve the nuclear issue on the Korean peninsula should still be the framework of six-party talks and the United Nations Security Council and also because of this, this meeting’s legitimacy and representativeness was in doubt from the beginning by the international community.”

Twenty nations agreed to consider tougher sanctions to press North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons, but the country has refused to give up the development of nuclear missiles in spite of increasingly severe U.N. sanctions, raising fears of escalating tensions on the Korean peninsula.

State continues to lead evidence in Ramnarain trial
17 January 2018, 5:52 PM

The State is continuing to call witnesses in the culpable homicide trial of Omesh Ramnarain at the Durban Regional Court.

State Prosecutor Herman Mouton called Warrant Officer Bongani Gasa from the South African Police Services accident combating unit to testify about his findings at the accident scene.

Ramnarain allegedly drove his car into two cyclists, Jared Dwyer and Richard da Silva on February 7th in 2014.

In his evidence, Gasa said the point of impact had been in the emergency lane.

Defense advocate Murray Pittman went to great lengths to question Gasa on his selection of the crime scene pictures to include in his report, alleging that Gasa had manufactured evidence against Ramnarain due to a bias.

Pittman probed Gasa about a stone on the floor of the passenger side of Ramnarain’s vehicle, and whether this could have led to the smashed windscreen.

Gasa replied that the stone could not have shattered the windscreen to such an extent. Gasa’s report also details that Ramnarain looked shocked, had red eyes and was slurring.

New details have emerged from the defense about Ramnarain’s passenger, 19 year-old Shannon Pillay.

It’s the first time that the court has heard confirmation of a passenger since the incident.

Only Ramnarain was arrested at the scene.

Coincidentally, state witness Mirelle Gerhard testified that she saw two “youngish” men running away from the crash scene.

Gerhard is part of the Kings Park Cycling Club and had been just ahead of Dwyer and da Silva on that morning cycle two years ago.

She told the court that she heard a loud bang and within seconds says she saw da Silva’s body lying on the ground.

She used the words “starfish” and “rag-doll” to describe the appearance of da Silva’s body when it hit the ground.

During this time, da Silva’s mother, brother and sister who have been in court all week looked to each other for comfort, clearly pained by Gerhard’s evidence.

A Durban runner was also called by the State to shed some light on what he saw that morning.

Craig Anderson was running on the Athlone bridge over the M4 when he says he saw two vehicles a black VW gold and a beige Mini Cooper pass him at high speed.

Anderson says “what made me turn around was the noise of skidding, of them racing each other, it was the speed at which they were travelling.”

Under cross examination Anderson admitted that he could not be sure whether the black VW golf that he saw was indeed Ramnarain’s.

Ramnarain, a 33-year-old plumber from Phoenix, has pleaded not guilty to the charges. He claims to have had only four ciders at about 11 o’ clock the night before the incident.

He further claims that Dwyer and da Silva must have been in the left-hand lane and not in the emergency lane.

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