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ActionSA
Former Midvaal Mayor Bongani Baloyi joins ActionSA
24 January 2022, 12:50 PM

ActionSA has announced that former Midvaal Municipality Mayor, Bongani Baloyi, is officially a part of ActionSA. The party made this announcement during a media briefing in Sandton, Johannesburg.

Baloyi surprised many in the country after he announced his resignation from the Democratic Alliance a few months ago.

He says he finds himself at home within ActionSA and is looking forward to imparting his skills as a public servant in his new home.

Baloyi says the 2024 national and provincial elections will be his main focus.

Baloyi says, “If someone who can take a decision to start a journey and build a party for all South Africans, look at the outcome of it. So I’m excited to add my little contribution to this team. Enthused to work towards the 2024 goal to dislodge the ANC. And it’s something I’m pledging to commit to doing as seen fit by ActionSA confidence. So I’m really excited and as they say azikhale.”

Fire
SANDF reassures the public that situation at the Waterkloof Air Force Base is under control
24 January 2022, 9:26 AM

The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has reassured the public that the situation at the Waterkloof Airforce Base in Pretoria is under control.

Investigations are continuing to determine what could have caused Sunday’s fire.

Officials say a pipe burst at the bulk fuel area within the base. Although foul play has not been ruled out, senior officials say the base is well-secured.

SANDF Spokesperson  Brigadier-General Andries Mahapa says, “We don’t have any element of doubt when it comes to regular maintenance as it has been done. Last night(Sunday), the chief fireman said the investigation is ongoing. They do the inspection and maintenance on a daily basis, so it is nothing that one should be really worried about due to a lack of maintenance.”

“There are so many theories about this issue. Some are linking it to the Parliament, some are linking it to the courts, but this is a separate issue altogether. It is just a fire that broke out and we managed to contain it, so everything is under control,” says Mahapa.

Waterkloof Fire I SANDF investigating the cause of fire at the airforce base in Pretoria:

Olympics
China warns of air pollution risks during Beijing Winter Games
24 January 2022, 7:21 AM

Weather conditions ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics at the start of February are “very unfavourable” when it comes to air quality, China’s environment ministry spokesman Liu Youbin warned on Monday.

Beijing and the surrounding province of Hebei, both prone to smog in winter months, will take emergency action to curb heavy pollution, but will at the same time aim to minimise the impact on the economy, Liu said.

He told reporters that Beijing and Hebei have been authorised to take necessary action to curb the operations of polluting companies with a relatively small economic impact, but would fully ensure operations at companies involved in important sectors like energy supply or COVID-19 control.

Waterkloof airforce
Investigations into the cause of fire at the Waterkloof Air Force Base continue: SANDF
24 January 2022, 6:00 AM

The South African Nation Defence Force (SANDF) says investigations will continue on Monday morning to determine what could have caused the fire at the Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria.

Officials say a pipe burst at the bulk fuel area within the base on Sunday evening. Although foul play has not been ruled out, senior officials say the base is well secured.

SANDF Spokesperson Brigadier-General Andries Mahapa says, “It was just an above ground pipe that had caught fire. So at the moment we cannot be in the position to say what was the cause.”

He adds: “The chief fireman is busy with the investigation so that they can be in the position to give a detailed report on the cause. We are satisfied in terms of the speedy reaction of the fire brigade of the airforce, we are more than happy.”

Fire at the Waterkloof Air Force Base in Tshwane under control: Brigadier-General Andries Mahapa

Education expert calls on the department to do more to improve the schooling system
24 January 2022, 5:40 AM

An education expert from the University of Limpopo says the Basic Education Department needs to do more to improve the schooling system, to ensure that Limpopo matric results are comparable to the national pass rate.

Limpopo is the worst performing province in the country and the only province that failed to reach a 70% mark in the 2021 matric results.

Doctor Abbey Ngoepe says while he acknowledges the improvement in Mathematics and other gateway subjects, the system needs an urgent overhaul.

“There are some pockets of excellence and improvement when one disaggregates the results. But generally speaking, there’s still more that needs to be done on an urgent basis to turn the schools around, to ensure that they improve, they become sustainable in terms of improvement. They move towards a path of being learning organisations and they reach the national percentage pass norm when it comes to performance.”

Meanwhile, Ngoepe says he disagrees with Education MEC Polly Boshielo, who on Friday blamed the COVID-19 pandemic and social-ills for contributing to the poor matric results.

“I think if one looks at the issue of the COVID-19 pandemic, it hits the entire country and if one looks at the numbers or can go back to the number of the cases across the nine provinces, Limpopo was amongst the less affected provinces by COVID-19, comparatively speaking. I mean, people would argue that the other provinces may be because they’re in urban areas like how, but take a province like KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape. They are rural, if not more rural than Limpopo Province. But look where they are in terms of performance.”

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