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Calls for an investigation into awarding of PPE tenders in Free State
9 August 2020, 6:25 PM

Political and friendship ties have no bearing in the awarding of tenders. This is according to the Free State Treasury in response to reports that those close to former Free State Premier and current African National Congress (ANC) Secretary-General, Ace Magashule, have benefitted from Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) tenders worth millions in the province.

At least seven companies with links to those close to Magashule have been awarded PPE tenders in the province.

The provincial treasury maintains the procurement processes were followed in line with the instruction notes of the National Treasury for emergency procurement of COVID-19 PPE.

Provincial Chief Director for Assets and Liabilities, Tshepo Mabilo, says nothing prohibits family members of government employees from doing business with the state.

He admits that Tebang Motaung, the son of veteran broadcaster Thuso Motaung, was awarded a R4.7 million tender.

Mabilo says he will have to verify whether Tebang Motaung did in fact declare that his father was a public servant. Motaung senior works in the Office of the Free State Premier.

“Our process did not take any consideration of political relationships that are transpiring in the province or nationally. We only focused on the administration and that processes are followed in that regard.”

Free State Treasury dismisses reports of political connections in awarding of tenders:

Calls for investigation

Meanwhile, the ANC’s alliance partner, the South African Communist Party (SACP), has called for an investigation.

Free State SACP’s first Deputy Provincial Secretary, Teboho Kholoanyane, says those involved in corruption must be prosecuted.

“We condemn all acts of corruption. It will be a sad day that those people who have proximity to the leadership are the ones who would then get tenders. We are, therefore, calling for an investigation. If the investigation can prove that there have been irregular means of awarding tenders, prosecution authorities should then take the matter forward and those people must be prosecuted.”

Democratic Alliance’s Chief Whip in the Free State legislature, David Janse Van Vuuren, says they will launch their own investigations.

“The DA in the Free State Legislature is also investigating the awarding of all contracts regarding COVID-19. We are not just investigating directors, but we are also investigating the core business of these companies. It’s a disgrace to think that there are companies that have got ties with ANC, that are enriching themselves, rather than bringing some relief to the people and businesses in the Free State that’s suffering under the virus.”

The provincial government has released a statement saying that neither the premier nor the MEC for Finance, were involved in PPE tender processes.

Rape survivors, activists decry stereotypes and culture of silence as SA marks Women’s Day
9 August 2020, 5:40 PM

Anglican Church Reverend June Dolley-Major has called on the church to allow for an independent investigation to be conducted into allegations of rape which she has laid against another priest from the church. She was allegedly raped by the fellow priest 18 years ago.

Reverend Dolley-Major suspended her most recent hunger strike in July when after years of non-action against the accused priest and during which time three case dockets went missing, the church finally agreed to reopen the case.

She joined a group of gender activists this morning outside the residence of Anglican Archbishop Thabo Makgoba in Bishopscourt, where they hung dozens of panties on the fence outside his home, as part of a protest in support of her.

“The Archbishop and the safer church basically are investigating themselves. The people on this panel are all priests or Anglicans, with the exception of one person and they all come from Johannesburg and I had major problems with that because no one can investigate themselves. You can’t be investigator, judge, and jury, of yourself,” says Dolley-Major.

Protest misdirected 

Anglican Archbishop Thabo Makgoba’s office has described the protest as misdirected. In a statement, Makgoba says the church is committed to a fair and transparent process for all abuse cases.

He says the Church Commission is investigating the matter and it is unlikely that it will comment before they have reported back to the Revered Dolley-Major.

Gender-based violence

Meanwhile, a group of gender activists from various parts of Cape Town also staged a protest at the Athlone Stadium against ongoing Gender-Based Violence and child abuse in South Africa to commemorate Women’s Day.

The protestors say they demonstrated outside the stadium because it is located close to the studio of a well-known Cape Town jazz musician and music teacher who was recently arrested on a charge of rape. He is due to stand trial at the end of October for allegedly grooming and raping one of his young male students over several years.

Non-Governmental Organisation, One Billion Rising, organised the protest.

“To the perpetrators out there, we see you and we will see you in court. Today, on this Women’s Day, it is about the children. The children of this country, the children of this community and also the children that have been victims of this heinous crime,” says the organisation’s Spokesperson, Lucinda Evans.

Although the activists commemorated Women’s Day, they say there will be no cause for celebration until they country can unmute the stereotypes and culture of silence that protects the rights of perpetrators rather than those of the victims.

The video below has the latest statistics regarding women:

Zuma apologises to Hanekom, he accepts the apology
9 August 2020, 4:27 PM

Former African National Congress (ANC) disciplinary committee chairperson Derek Hanekom has accepted former President Jacob Zuma’s apology on Sunday.

This stems from a social media post by the former President labelling Hanekom an enemy agent.

Hanekom went to court in reaction to the tweet where he sued Zuma for R500 000.

In reaction to Friday’s court ruling, Hanekom told SABC News he was relieved and feeling good about the outcome.

He has now accepted Zuma’s apology, saying “As far as I am concerned, the matter is now closed, apart from the determination of costs and damages…”

On Friday, the Constitutional Court reaffirmed a Durban High Court ruling. It rejected Zuma’s appeal of the earlier court ruling which ruled he should publicly apologise and withdraw his statement.

In the video below, Judge Dhaya Pillay orders Zuma to apologise to Hanekom within 24 hours: 



Tutu Foundation calls on women to be at the front seat of post COVID-19 recovery plan
9 August 2020, 3:06 PM

The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation is calling on women to take a front seat in the post coronavirus pandemic recovery plan.

In a Women’s Day statement, the Foundation says COVID-19 has revealed some of the best human characteristics such as the courage and compassion of frontline healthcare workers and some of the worst, including systemic and fundamentally unfair inequality.

It quotes a 2020 World Economic Forum (WEF) report on the global gender gap. According to the Foundation, South Africa features a credible 17th out of 153 countries on the WEF’s global gender gap list.

The Foundation, however, added that South Africa also features in the fourth position on the World Health Organisation’s list of the highest rate of women murdered in the world.

According to the latest crime statistics, the KwaZulu-Natal province has the highest rate of murder and rape in the country. The province has seen an increase of 10.6% in the murder rate since last year.

In the video below, Minister Bheki Cele announces the crime statistics: 

The Tutu Legacy Foundation is calling for a new generation of revolutionary voices and leaders to act. On 13 August, it will host a conversation, titled Gender-Based Violence: Doing the Difficult Work.

Women’s Day is commemorated annually in South Africa to remember the 1956 women’s march against the use of passbooks  Approximately 20 000  women marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria and submitted a petition against the apartheid government’s law.  -Reporting by Vicky Stark

FEATURE : A giant in the motor industry – Marcia Mayaba
9 August 2020, 1:50 PM

Barloworld Motor Trading Executive Marcia Mayaba says company executives in the motor industry need to take decisive steps to ensure that women are represented at all levels.

She says paying lip service to the transformation agenda in the motor industry will not help in achieving it.

“The transformation discussion and agenda should be driven from the top. The CEO sets the tone of the culture of the business. In order for transformation and gender parity to take place, it has to come at the senior level. And you cannot pay lip service, integrity is important. You have to walk the talk, you have to make the appointments, and you have to create visibility, you have to have the dialogues.”

Recognition of women in the industry

Mayaba has been in the industry since 1997. She started as a trainee at Barloworld Truck Hire and went on to become the first black female operations manager at the same company. She says she has had to work three times harder than her male counterparts to get ahead in the industry.

“Back in 1997, it was three years after democracy, so the customer profile, the workforce profile was very much white and male-dominated. If there were women in the organisation, you know, there were no women leaders. So you literally had to navigate yourself into this new environment. So, the challenges for me really firstly were not being taken seriously and not being acknowledged in terms of the role performed. “

Twenty-three years later and she still faces the same obstacles. “I mean that hasn’t changed even today, in every level I’ve occupied; I still fight for things I fought for in 1997. The difference now is that you know, I have these crucial conversations, I have this robust debates and I have to create awareness. I mean at some point something has to give.”

Contribution to the inclusion of women

In July, Mayaba was appointed the Vice President of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). The organisation represents the interests of dealership owners.

Through this position, she aims to contribute to the inclusion of women in the industry. “In terms of my contribution as Vice-chair, it is to work very closely with the chairperson but my primary function and focus is on transformation, diversity, and inclusion and secondly, also just to pretty much to position the NADA to be quite futuristic and business ready for the new millennials and the fourth industrialisation revolution. “

Against all odds

From humble beginnings in Soweto, Orlando East, Mayaba went on to break barriers in the motor industry, occupying positions that some with the same make never dared to even dream of. It was after her mother succumbed to breast cancer that she had to drop out of varsity and start working.

She became the first female dealer principal in 2011, which is a general manager in a dealership, responsible for the output of the business, the workers, and customers.

Her other achievements include winning the prestigious Club of Excellence for Volkswagen South Africa and being appointed as the first female franchise executive in South Africa. The greatest gift that her mother gave her, according to Mayaba, was laying a good educational foundation.

An industry of choice for women

Although she has achieved a lot so far, she aims to lead the way in making the motor industry, an industry of choice for women.

“I think our responsibility as stakeholders in the motor industry is one where we need to reposition the perception of the motor industry. We need to reposition it in such a way that women can regard it as an industry of choice. I am on LinkedIn and all you see really are women that go into finance, medicine, science, etc. It is hardly ever that you will see any post related to the motor industry. Part of my responsibility at NADA is to influence and shape the repositioning of the industry.”

She urges women to open their horizons. “The motor industry is not about just buying a car or selling a car. There are so many elements to this thing, there are original equipment manufacturers, and some people don’t know that there are manufacturers who produce vehicles in this country. The Ford Ranger is produced in this country; the Polo is manufactured in South Africa, that is one element. Then there is the component side of the business, and then there is the government and the Department of Transport, there are too many elements in the motor industry that it cannot be ignored.”

Below is a full interview with Marcia Mayaba: 

Up close and personal

Q: What do you do for fun?
A: I love entertaining and it is unfortunate because of the pandemic and lockdown we have to do the responsible thing and that has been a stumbling block for me. But either than that there was a time that I was riding motorbikes, I still do but my dream is to have a Harley Davidson.

Q: Which is your favourite car, currently and why?
A: It has to be the Ford Mustang; I am driving it now as my current company car. It is powerful, it is a V8, 338 kilowatts and it has just got attitude.

Q: If you are into books, what is your current read?
A: I am a very bad reader, so I have started listening to audiobooks but the book that I read and really made an impact was Good to Great by Jim Collins.

Q: Music, whom do you listen to?
A: I am old school and I am an old soul. I cannot relate to some of the music today. Teddy Pendergrass, Luther Vandross, Dolly Parton, Gerald Levert, I am a soul music type of person. So, Sundays are my very best.



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