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Mozambique’s Nyusi confirms arrival of Rwandan troops to help fight insurgency
13 July 2021, 10:31 AM

The president of Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, has confirmed the arrival of troops from Rwanda to support the fight against terrorist attacks in Cabo Delgado.

The province has been battling insurgency since October 2017.

This latest development has not been received well, especially because the Southern African Development Community (SADC) was meant to have been first to deploy its joint forces.

However, Mozambique’s Minister of Defence, Jaime Neto, denies this move is meant to undercut SADC’s intervention efforts.

“At the ministerial level, we may not always have concrete information on what has been dealt with but Cabo Delgado is a privileged subjects for Heads of State at the level of SADC region and obviously at our level it’s up to us to take decisions from consultations that occurred out at the level of the Heads of State,” says Neto.

Fredson Guilengue on Rwanda deploying troops to Mozambique to help fight insurgents:

Over the weekend, South Africa denied reports of tensions between the country and neighbouring Mozambique.

Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula confirmed that the country’s army will be among SADC security forces that will be giving support to the Mozambican people.

“SADC summit met and the decision has been taken which has given a mandate to our armed forces to moving to Mozambique and give support to the Mozambican people. So whatever it is whether Mozambique would have had a problem with South Africa which I’m not aware of. Yes I am aware of some of the people who have been arrested in Mozambique and how how that matter has turned out,” she said.

Mapisa-Nqakula on situation in Mozambique:

SABC expresses sadness over Ben Ngubane’s passing, IFP describes him as a remarkable leader
13 July 2021, 9:28 AM

The SABC says it is saddened by the passing of its former board chairperson, Dr Ben Ngubane.

The public broadcaster says, in a statement, that one of the corporation’s biggest achievements under Ngubane’s tenure – was when it became the official broadcaster of the historic 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Group Executive for Corporate Affairs and Marketing, Gugu Ntuli, says the SABC is thankful for Ngubane’s immense contribution and would like to extend heartfelt condolences to his family.

Ngubane died at the age of 79 after loosing his battle with COVID-19.

Tributes continue to pour in for him, with IFP leader Velenkosini Buthelezi describing him as a remarkable leader, who made a tremendous contribution to South Africa’s governance and democracy.

“Dr Ngubane played a major role within the structure of the IFP until he became the national chairperson of the IFP. In government Dr Ngubane represented the IFP well. It is painful that we lose Dr Ngubane during the time of havoc that is devastating the economy and infrastructure in KZN which Ngubane devoted his efforts in building the economic growth and social justice,” says Buthelezi.

Tributes pour in for Dr Ngubane:

Ngubane’s background

Ngubane was born in 1941 at the Inchanga Roman Catholic Mission in Camperdown in KwaZulu-Natal. He began his political career in the early 70s while at the University of Natal’s medical school.

There, he served as the vice president of the National Union of South African Students (NUSAS). He joined the IFP in 1976, eventually becoming its national chairperson.

Ngubane joined government in 1994, when he was appointed the first Minister of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology. A portfolio he would serve in again in 1999. This was shortly after becoming Kwazulu-Natal premier two years prior.

“When I become Minister of Science and Technology in 2009, I had the pleasure of benefitting from the solid foundation that Dr Ngubane and my other predecessors had put in place. It made it easy for us to focus on speeding up the implementation of the projects they had started. South Africa owes a debt of gratitude to Dr Ngubane for pioneering our science and technology,” Minister of International Relations and Co-operation, Dr Naledi Pandor, has said.

Ngubane was appointed South Africa’s ambassador to Japan in 2004.

In 2006, he ended his long-term relationship with the IFP when he resigned from the party to join the African National Congress (ANC).

He previously served at the helm of parastatals like Eskom and the SABC.

In 2020, he testified at the State Capture Commission on alleged wrongdoing by entities contracted by Eskom and linked to the Gupta family.

In the health sector, he’s been lauded for his role in changing the landscape of private healthcare in Kwazulu-Natal.

Melomed Private Hospital Manager, Randal Pedro, says: “Dr Ngubane played a pivotal role in the transformation of the private health care landscape in Northern KZN in his advisory capacity and we will personally miss his guidance and teaching. Melomed Richards bay were privileged to have his years of loyal patronage and support not just as a patient but as a adversary for access to health care and in doing so upholding his oath as a medical doctor.”

Ngubane had been admitted to hospital for two weeks at the time of his passing.

“Until last Tuesday he made a funny comment which was giving me hope that he’s going to recover. He said he was able to go and take a shower by himself while he’s in hospital and after that one could not access him until last week, his daughter informed his father is not in good shape, even yesterday she said anything could happen. This morning we received a message that he has passed on,” family spokesperson, Mondli Kunene, told SABC News.

Dr Ngubane leaves behind his wife and children. – Additional reporting by Phumzile Mlangeni 

N3 closed following reports of looting at Engen Tugela One Stop North
13 July 2021, 7:15 AM

The entire N3 Toll Route from Cedara to Heidelberg has been closed.

In a statement, the N3 Toll Concession says that the entire route from Cedara in KwaZulu-Natal to Heidelberg south in Gauteng will remain closed until further notice.

New reports were received on Monday night of a violent mob looting the Engen Tugela One Stop North, and of protestors burning tyres along this section of the route.

The security of Tugela Plaza in KwaZulu-Natal and De Hoek Plaza is also under renewed threat.

Personnel have been evacuated from all toll plazas on the route.

Rob Bryne gives you the latest traffic news in the video below:

The violent protests erupted after the incarceration of former president Jacob Zuma last week. His supporters want him released from prison, where he is serving a 15-month sentence for defying a Constitutional Court order.

Restaurant association urges government to fast track vaccine rollout for workers in the sector
13 July 2021, 6:35 AM

The restaurant industry of South Africa has called on government to fast-track the vaccine roll-out for their staff. The industry was responding to amended lockdown regulations announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday night.

Restaurants are now allowed to operate, but the sale of alcohol at their outlets remains prohibited. The industry says without being able to operate at full capacity, more jobs will be lost.

With the updated lockdown regulations, restaurants may not accommodate more than 50 people at a time. For smaller venues, restaurants may not exceed 50% of their normal capacity. President Ramaphosa said that strict protocols must be implemented to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at eateries.

Wendy Alberts is the CEO of Restaurant Association of South Africa (RASA). Since the lockdown was implemented in March 2020, the hospitality industry has been one of the worst affected, with thousand of jobs having been shed. She says the president has not understood what the industry needs to save jobs.

“We are not food trailers. We are sophisticated businesses with overheads. We simply cannot pay our bills with the limited seating capacity that is being awarded to us. There has been absolutely no compensation and they want to keep our businesses closed, they need to compensate us on the back end. What we have called for is scientific evidence that outlines the comparative between a pharmacy, a retail store, a supermarket and a restaurant. We also need to separate the conversation between alcohol and transmission. Are we high risk area’s of transmission and if we are, give us the evidence. Expedite the vaccine for the frontline staff so that we can trade or businesses and not vulnerable and out under threat,” she says.

Restaurant owners say with each tough lockdown – keeping their businesses open becomes more challenging. Owner of the Rocket Lifestyle Group in Johannesburg, Sean Barber, says four of his restaurants have faced closure due to accumulating debt.

“It’s been pretty devastating. Rocket’s businesses range from three different types of sectors. The first is takeaway, fast food. Those are stationed in the business districts, where we require high corporate foot fall. Obviously since March 2020, there hasn’t been the corporate footfall. Those four shops have had to close. The 9pm curfew means closing the shop at 8 and kitchen at 7:30. It really effects us massively. Every single time we get locked down, it gets harder to come out of it. When you trading after a lockdown, you busy servicing retrospective debt that you incurred during that lockdown. Cash reserves are depleted,” explains Barber.

While the hospitality sector welcomed the re-opening of the restaurant sector – the Federation Hospitality Association of Southern Africa (FEDHASA) says many restaurants may close for good.

FEDHASA national chairperson, Rosemary Anderson, says the industry has suffered massive unemployment that they will probably never recover from.

“At FEDHASA, we are grateful that our president announced that restaurants are allowed to open. However there is confusion in the latest gazette in that it has dropped the wording regarding indoor and outdoor numbers allowed and only refers to indoor. We request clarification in this regard. As much as we are grateful that restaurants are allowed to open, we are also cognisant that many restaurants will not be financially viable for them to open as they cannot serve alcohol. We also request the TERS fund,” Anderson pleads.

Businesses in tourism sector and restaurants crumbling under level 4 lockdown:

Judgment reserved in Zuma’s rescission application
13 July 2021, 5:54 AM

The Constitutional Court has reserved judgment in former president Jacob Zuma’s rescission application.

The former president was convicted and sentenced to 15 months in jail for contempt of court for defying the Apex Court order to appear before the Commission on State Capture.

Monday’s hearing was an almost day long legal battle at the Constitutional Court with others arguing to have South Africa’s former president in jail and others arguing for his release. Representing the former president in his rescission application, Senior Counsel advocate Dali Mpofu said his client was convicted and sent to jail without trial, insisting this is reminiscent of the apartheid South Africa.

But advocate Thembeka Ngcukaitobi for the commission said Zuma in fact squandered his opportunities to state his case and chose to make disparaging remarks and insulted the court and justices of the Apex Court.

This sentiment is also shared by representative of the Helen Suzan Foundation advocate Max Du Plessis, who said Zuma deliberately missed the opportunity by refusing an offer to appear before the commission and the Constitutional Court.

But Advocate Mpofu was adamant that Zuma’s sentencing by the Apex Court is simply unconstitutional, as some of his rights were limited if not ignored in this case.

And after almost ten hours of legal battle, all eyes are now on the justices of the highest court in the land to rule whether Zuma will soon be home or he will serve his jail term until his parole period after 3 months.

Live proceedings of the Zuma rescission application hearing:

The former president’s incarceration has sparked violence in parts of the country, which continued overnight despite President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address calling for calm and restraint.

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