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Glebelands satellite station means thugs have no place to hide: Mbalula
1 December 2017, 9:12 PM

A long-awaited satellite police station was opened at uMlazi’s crime-ridden Glebelands Hostel on Friday afternoon and Police Minister Fikile Mbalula said thugs at the sprawling complex would now have no place to hide.

Housing an estimated 22,000 residents, Glebelands has been linked to political murders and experiences high rates of violent crime, with community activists telling the Moerane Commission investigating political killings in the province that the squalid complex is a haven for hitmen that operate throughout KwaZulu-Natal.

“We are ready for them, wherever they are and whatever they do, they must know that there is no community in South Africa that will be terrorised by criminals,” said Mbalula.

Arriving over an hour late, Mbalula was greeted by a praise singer before he started speaking. In what has now become his norm, the minister interspersed his speech with expletives and bravado.

“This police station, working with our people, we must squeeze the space for criminals. We must make it unbearable, we must not make it easy for them,” he said.

Some Glebelands residents were seated in the official, shaded area along with a phalanx of police, but many peered curiously from the hill above the station.

The police needed to respect communities, Mbalula bellowed, and when Glebelands residents reported crimes, they should be treated as “genuine complainants and victims”, he said, adding that it was up to a court of law to decide the rest.

“You walk into this station as a victim but walk out as a survivor,” he said.

“Women especially must feel comfortable to speak about their ordeals, abuse, rape and all acts of discrimination,” he said.
It was his intention, said Mbalula, to work with the national commissioner on an already announced turnaround strategy that would see police respond to situations “accordingly” and ensure that tactical response was “up to scratch”.

“We will also be using technology to ensure that in places like Glebelands our policing is actually upgraded,” he said.

Fighting crime was the responsibility of the police and communities, he said.

“But we need you to work with the police. This station reinforces existing stations, but it brings policing resources closer to the people,” he said.

The station is housed in a municipal building on the Glebelands property and is receiving free electricity and water supply from eThekwini.

There were delays in opening the station because it had to be properly secured for staff and have CCTV cameras installed, according to acting provincial police commissioner, major general Bhekinkosi Langa.

N West nominates Dlamini-Zuma as presidential candidate
1 December 2017, 8:55 PM

African National Congress (ANC) in North West says it will lobby structures in other provinces to rally behind Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma’s ANC presidential campaign.

It announced this at its Provincial General Council where Dlamini-Zuma received 291 nominations against 45 for deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa.

The PGC was held in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria. More calls for unity in the ANC were reiterated at the PGC.

Dlamini-Zuma has been confirmed the presidential candidate for ANC in North West, ending months of speculation about the province’s preference.

ANC chairperson in North West Supra Mahumapelo says they will now focus on lobbying their counterparts in other provinces, to support Dlamini-Zuma.

“The leadership of the ANC in the province has now been officially mandated, remember, we have not had an official position until ten minutes ago, has now officially been mandated to lead a campaign of engagement throughout the country, to unashamedly and without any fear or doubt, contradictions or prejudice to go and lobby the rest of the provinces, throughout the country to say, our position is Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.”

And the issue of delegates being bought prior to the conference was also mentioned, with ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe calling on delegates who will be attending the national elective conference on the 16th, to vote with consciousness.

Mantashe says there’s no problem with lobbying, as long as it does not go with threats and bribery.

“It’s even worse at this point in time in the ANC where money is being used as a tool for lobbying. Now, the problem with money, I want to say it whether you throw me out of this meeting or not. I pass this message wherever I go, is that money forces delegates to vote against mandates of the branches.”

But the PGC did not go without disagreements among the members, with some saying there are bogus branches, and as a result wrong people will be attending the national elective conference.

This triggered scolding from the provincial secretary Dakota Legoete, who told members to go through the right channels when lodging complaints about credentials.

“The plenary of the PGC comrades, it’s not the relevant method in terms of our processes, to raise disputes. I think all of us are aware, with the booklets that we have, where disputes and appeals are raised. This one is not one of the processes.”

Over a hundred disputes have been lodged by branches in North West, and the NEC’s dispute resolution committee has attended to some of them.

Mantashe and Mahumapelo implored on delegates to promote unity in the movement, and not allow leadership preferences divide them.

Other nominees in the North West list are David Mabuza for deputy president, Nathi Mthetwa for national chairperson, Ace Magashule for Secretary General, Jesse Duarte for Deputy Secretary General and Maite Nkoana Mashabane for the position of Treasurer.

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IMF to send mission to Zimbabwe in coming days
30 November 2017, 9:20 PM

The International Monetary Fund will send a staff mission to Zimbabwe in coming days to meet with officials of the new government and assess the country’s fiscal and economic situation, IMF Spokesman Gerry Rice said on Thursday.

The regular staff visit to Harare in early December “will update our assessment of Zimbabwe’s fiscal position, foreign exchange developments and inquire about the new administration’s economic plans.” Rice told a news briefing.

Zimbabwe’s new President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Tuesday appointed a new acting finance minister and announced a three-month amnesty window for the return of public funds illegally stashed abroad by individuals and companies.

Just a week in office, Mnangagwa has promised to tackle corruption that had become endemic under former President Robert Mugabe’s 37-year rule.

“We stand ready to support the authorities in their efforts to design policies that can indeed restore stability and growth,” Rice said.

He added that while a concerted international effort to “revive and reintegrate” Zimbabwe’s economy will be needed, a financial assistance package from the IMF can only be possible once there is progress on clearing arrears with other international institutions.

Zimbabwe owes arrears of around $1.8 billion to the World Bank and the African Development Bank. Suffering from decades of decline and hyperinflation as a result of Mugabe’s economic policies, Zimbabwe has not been able to borrow from international lenders since 1999, when it started defaulting on its debt.

Last week, the IMF’s Zimbabwe mission chief said that the country’s economic situation “remains very difficult” with growth threatened by high government spending, an untenable foreign exchange regime and inadequate reforms.

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E Cape nominates Ramaphosa for ANC president
30 November 2017, 7:46 PM

The African National Congress’s Provincial General Council in the Eastern Cape has nominated deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa to be the president of the ANC in the December conference.

ANC treasurer general Zweli Mkhize has been nominated as the deputy president while former KwaZulu Natal ANC chairperson Senzo Mcunu nominated as the secretary General.

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe has been nominated as the party national chairperson.

Close on 600 ANC members participated in the PGC. Official announcement and the entire preferred top six candidates.

“By 423 votes comrade Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa allow me to proceed to the deputy president position Zweli Mkhize, for the position of the national chairperson Gwede Mantashe , for the secretary general positions Senzo Mchunu for deputy secretary general is Zingisa Losi and lastly for the position of treasurer general with 429 branches nominated Paul Mashatile.”

Ramaphosa says it is too early to say whether if he becomes President he will grant President Jacob Zuma amnesty. He was responding to questions at a meeting with members of the Parliamentary Press Gallery Association.

Ramaphosa says the court should be given time to deal with the matter of the charges against the president before talking about amnesty.

“The issue does not arise because the issue of the charges is before the courts. Let us allow that to happen because the NPA has given the president an opportunity to make representations. Let us allow that process to unfold. ”

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African leaders draw up emergency plan for migrants in Libya
30 November 2017, 5:08 PM

The European Union, United Nations and African Union have agreed to an emergency plan to dismantle people smuggling networks and repatriate stranded migrants in an effort to ease a human rights disaster in Libya, officials said.

Details of the strategy were negotiated at an African Union-European Union summit that opened on Wednesday in Ivory Coast, and the plan was expected to be finalised on Thursday.

Images broadcast  earlier in November appearing to show migrants auctioned off as slaves by Libyan traffickers has sparked outrage in Europe and anger in Africa.

It shone a light on abuses committed against African migrants seeking to reach Europe, forcing the issue to the top of the agenda of a summit meant to focus on Africa’s youth.

European Council President Donald Tusk called the slavery reports “horrifying” during the summit’s opening ceremony and said the issue of migration was a joint responsibility of European and African governments.

French President Emmanuel Macron said late on Wednesday that the plan included the establishment of an “operational task-force” composed of European and African police and intelligence services.

“The goal will be in very short order to be able to arrest identified traffickers, dismantle these networks and their financing which goes through banks and payments that in the region contribute, to sustaining terrorism,” he said.

The plan emerged from a meeting of UN officials, EU leaders and government representatives from Chad, Niger, Morocco, Congo and Libya that was called by France on Wednesday.

The European Union, African Union and United Nations agreed to asset freezes and financial sanctions on known smugglers.

Libya’s government, which has promised to investigation reports of slave auctions, agreed to grant UN agencies access to migrant camps in areas under its control, German officials said.

EU countries meanwhile agreed to finance the repatriation of migrants from Libya, a process that is already being organised by the International Organization for Migration, they said.

Vulnerable migrants that might eventually qualify for asylum will be brought to Chad or Niger before being relocated to a third country either in Europe or another region.

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