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Vivian Nyarunda
Kenya to count intersex persons in upcoming census
19 August 2019, 4:26 PM

Kenya will for the first time count intersex persons during the upcoming national population census. For the first time the census questionnaire will have three markers Male, Female and Intersex.

This follows a successful petition to the Kenyan government by intersex persons who are fighting for legal recognition. Intersex persons are individuals born with sex characteristics that do not fit the typical definitions of male or female bodies.

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Qondile Khedama
Bloemfontein schools left without water as Metro acts on defaulters
19 August 2019, 2:55 PM

A large number of schools in Bloemfontein have been without running water since last week. This is after the struggling Mangaung Metro began to take action against those who default in paying their rates and services.

At least 92 primary and high schools owe the municipality more than R70 million in arrears.

Mangaung Metro spokesperson, Qondile Khedama, says residents and government departments owe them R4 billion.

“We have made arrangements two years back, some of them did not honour them. We have disconnected about 92 schools and 16 schools reacted immediately. They’ve either paid or made arrangements, so we hope that they will stick to the arrangement they’ve made with the municipality. The other thing that is critical is that total outstanding debts for water in the schools, it’s more than R75 million. So that tells you that there is a problem with our schools,” says Khedama.

KZN ANC members protesting in Pietermaritzburg
19 August 2019, 2:08 PM

Members of the African National Congress (ANC) in the Moses Mabhida region are currently protesting outside their party offices in Pietermaritzburg. The Regional Executive Committee was disbanded in September last year.

This was done because its term came to an end. The ANC however, chose to have an interim structure while it prepared for the general elections, than hold a regional elective conference at the time.

Disgruntled ANC members are now saying the lifespan of the interim structure – the Regional Task Team has expired. Last week the ANC recalled the city’s Mayor, Themba Njilo, together with all the other ANC members on the city’s executive committee.

One of the ANC branch leaders, Sthembiso Nkuna says they do not want the current task team to oversee the build up to their conference.

“We are here this morning to again remind our leadership that since the time of the disbandment of REC and the formation of the RTT. The RTT time expired in November last year, that has been disregarded by our leadership and in terms of the constitution of the ANC an interim structure like RTT has a life span of six months and we are here to remind our leadership that time of this interim leadership is over. We are preparing for conference, we are not going to accept that processes of the conference should be managed by the current factional RTT,” says Nkuna.

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Soldiers and police deployed in Bulawayo over anti-government demonstration
19 August 2019, 11:50 AM

Soldiers and police deployed in large numbers in Zimbabwe’s second city Bulawayo on Monday to enforce a ban on an anti-government demonstration, as the country’s main opposition party challenged that decision in court.

The street march was the second called in four days by the Movement for Democratic Change’s (MDC) as it looks to rally support for nationwide protests against President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government, which it accuses of repression and blames for the country’s worst economic crisis in a decade.

Authorities had also banned Friday’s gathering in Harare which the MDC then called off, aiming to avert bloodshed after police there rounded up its followers and dispersed them with batons and water cannon.

On Monday in Bulawayo, an MDC heartland, soldiers in trucks deployed in the city centre and nearby townships, witnesses said, while police patrolled on foot, horseback and in vehicles, also cordoning off the magistrates court.

Eight MDC officials, including its national chairwoman, were due to appear there on charges of publishing falsehoods, the party said. They were arrested on Saturday as they distributed mpamphlets urging residents to attend Monday’s march.

David Coltart, a Bulawayo lawyer and MDC senator, said magistrates were also scheduled to hear the party’s appeal against the ban.

“The law (used to ban the protest) is clearly unconstitutional and unjust but we have an obligation to comply because we are a peaceful organisation,” he told Reuters.

EFF in Free State files court application against Metsimaholo municipality
19 August 2019, 11:24 AM

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in the Free State has filed an urgent court application to stop the Metsimaholo municipality from removing some Sasolburg residents who have occupied land. The EFF in the province has encouraged the community to occupy land that has been approved for residential purpose by the municipality.

The party says the African National Congress (ANC) councillors had initially allocated certain people sites on municipal land, but when the EFF does the same, the municipality removes them.

Busanku Msimang is the EFF member in the Free State legislature responsible for human settlement.

“We are just emphasizing on what the Executive Mayor has been saying. We are simply saying people when they see sites, especially which have been evaluated, which have been surveyed, we are saying they must go and occupy. When they see unoccupied land they must go and occupy given that the land has been surveyed, there are taps that side and then councillors of ANC have also taken people to that side. The very same Metsimaholo in Thabo Mbeki Section, there was a programme of occupy the unoccupied land led by the ANC, it can be different when is led by other people,” explains Msimang.



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