KwaZulu-Natal Emergency Medical Services Robert McKenzie says at this stage there are no casualties.
“Emergency services are currently on scene of a structural fire on Dr. Yusuf Dadoo street which is the former Grey Street in the Durban CBD. A building is currently alight and firefighters are currently busy trying to extinguish the blaze. Paramedics are currently on standby at the scene.
However, at this stage there are no casualties that have been reported. The exact cause of the fire is not known at this stage and is going to be investigated by police. “
COPE calls for an anti-corruption fighting unit similar to disbanded Scorpions
24 August 2020, 2:28 PM
The Congress of the People (COPE) is calling on the Justice and Police Ministers to establish an anti-corruption fighting unit similar to the disbanded Scorpions – to replace the Hawks. COPE says the Hawks is a toothless anti-corruption fighting unit.
Spokesperson Dennis Bloem says while COPE welcomes the recent arrests by the Hawks – these were just made for media attention without concrete action.
He says there are many cases investigated by the Hawks that have dragged on for too long.
“It is either the Hawks are not investigating cases properly and in a hurry to prove to the public that they are working. It can’t be that they arrest suspects and the cases drag on for years. A case in point is that of the former Mayor of eThekwini Zanele Gumede. In some instances, cases are withdrawn. COPE is calling upon the Minister of Justice and Police to establish a unit, similar to the disbanded Scorpions that will be more effective than the Hawks. People are starting to lose hope and trust in the Hawks.”
On Friday, the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigations arrested four people in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro in the Eastern Cape. They include the Acting City Manager Mvuleni Mapu, two other municipal officials as well as a businesswoman for alleged fraud linked to the Housing Department where Mapu is a director. They are all out on bail.
Hawks arrest Nelson Mandela Bay acting city manager:
Western Cape hopes to revive tourism sector
17 August 2020, 5:17 PM
Tourism is one of the major economic drivers of the Western Cape economy. With Level 2 of the national lockdown officially starting on Tuesday, businesses like restaurants, bars and wine farms are preparing for reopening.
But not all will welcome customers back.
Long Street in Cape Town is popular for its vibrant nightlife. The CBD strip lures locals and international tourists. However, stringent regulations coupled with the ban on alcohol has taken its toll.
The street has fallen quiet. The Long Street vibe, like tourism, could take years to recover.
The provincial government says the move to Level 2 is the first step to recovery.
“We will be launching our ‘We are Open Domestic Tourism Campaign’ next month to encourage visitors to explore the Western Cape and safely discover the best we have to offer as an affordable, world-class destination. We also be launching our ‘Stay Safe, Save Jobs campaign’ to remind businesses about the many tools and resources that we have available to assist them to ensure that businesses can stay safe, that they stay open and that together we can save jobs in the Western Cape,” says Western Cape Finance And Economic Opportunities MEC, David Maynier.
SABC’s Mariska Botha reports:
Job losses on the cards
The wine industry has been brought to its knees by the alcohol ban. 18 000 jobs and the continued existence of smaller wineries are on the line.
The province says the second pandemic, that of unemployment, hunger and poverty has to be fought with the same vigour as COVID- 19.
“We still have restrictions in place. Let’s still do it safely within those restrictions then it doesn’t force the government to close down or bring back further restrictions. We can do this responsibly. We continue with our social distancing, masks, hand sanitising, we keep slowing the spread and then you can actually look at how we can push back the curfew further or even take it away. We can bring back international flights. We can start fighting for the next stage,” says Western Cape Premier, Alan Winde.
The Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) at Cape Town International Airport says measures in place will ensure the safety of travellers.
Meanwhile, the Cape Chamber of Commerce has welcomed the move to Level 2, but says further easing of restrictions is vital to save more jobs.
In the video below, the SABC News looks at the impact of the lockdown on restaurants:
Gauteng government in court to defend decision to dissolve City of Tshwane Council
17 August 2020, 4:44 PM
Gauteng government has defended its decision to dissolve the City of Tshwane Council, insisting that the local government intervention is mandated by the law to dissolve a council if the council is failing.
Government has argued in the Supreme Court of Appeal that it did not breach the constitution by dissolving the City of Tshwane Council.
It is appealing against the North Gauteng High Court judgment which ruled in Democratic Alliances (DA)’s favour to set aside the dissolution of the council.
The court found that the decision by Gauteng government to dissolve the municipal council was unlawful.
Senior Counsel, Advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi has submitted before the appeals court that it is preferable for the administrator to continue running the Tshwane municipality.
Representing Gauteng government, Ngcukaitobi has argued that the council under the leadership of the Democratic Alliance was dysfunctional and has caused irreparable harm to the residents.
Advocate Ngcukaitobi told the SCA that the DA has run the municipality to the ground.
“The solution ignores the political route of the program which is the collapse between the EFF and the DA coalition. It treats the EFF and the ANC essentially as children who simply do not know their responsibilities. It excludes the inability of the DA to manage the political relationship with the EFF which they have been running together for at least the past 3 years,” says advocate Ngcukaitobi.
The respondent in the case argued that Tshwane municipality has achieved unqualified reports three years in a row under the DA.
DA’s Advocate Steven Budlender has told the Supreme Court of Appeal that the Tshwane residents are deprived of its elected government.
Advocate Budlender has submitted that the constitution contemplates a limited period for which citizens may be deprived of governance by elected representatives.
“This court has an obvious solution to avoid the looming constitutional crisis. It is to simply grant the relief or dismiss the appeal and grant the relief in terms of Section 83. It is a remedy which the legislature has seen fit to give to this court and this court will be entitled to do it in terms of remedy.”
The judgment is reserved.
In the video below, court sets aside decision to place City of Tshwane Metro under administration:
VIDEO: Mthethwa briefs the media on second wave of COVID-19 relief fund
17 August 2020, 4:00 PM
Minister of Sport, Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa is hosting a media briefing on the criteria and the application process of the second wave of the COVID-19 Relief Fund.