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Muslims
Muslims celebrate Eid-al-Fitr
5 June 2019, 7:46 PM

Muslims across the world are celebrating Eid-al- Fitr on Wednesday. The day marks the end of the month of Ramadan, a sacred period of fasting in the Muslim calendar. Eid- al-Fitr is the first day of the Islamic month of Shawwal. In Islam, Shawwal kicks off a month-long pilgrimage.

It also marks the end of Ramadan, a time of introspection, prayer and sacrifice for Muslims. At the Muir Street Mosque in District Six, the faithful have come together in supplication and thanksgiving. The sermon brings a message of peaceful co-existence and respect.

“It is important that we recognise those differences and that we live in harmony with one another in a peaceful manner that we do not condemn one another because they are different to us and I think that is the important message you learn throughout the month of fasting. The month of Ramadan, no matter of your colour, your creed, wherever you come from there is no geography boundaries where we are concerned,” says Sheigh Moegamad Moerat who is the Imam of Zeenatul Islam Mosque.

Eid is usually marked with early morning prayers, before families spend time together.

“For us as Muslims today it is both a day of joy but also a day of sadness because when we look across the world from being a child to where I am today and my brother can bear that out. We as Muslims have never suffered as much as we are suffering today, all over the world Muslims are dying. Ramadan is a period of time where the Almighty gives us the opportunity to conquer those aspects of the human condition that are in control of human beings. Our lust for our food, or our desire for physical intimacy, two of the most powerful precipitants to human behaviour. During Ramadan we get the opportunity to take control of that rather than be controlled by those lusts,” says worshipper Nazeem Ebrahim.

Traditionally, Muslim families also visit the graves of loved ones on this day. Offering prayers for mercy for those that have passed on but also encouraging the living to conduct themselves in a manner that will be worthy of heaven. Some families have, however, experienced a difficult end to the month of Ramadan. In Manenberg on the Cape Flats, heavy rainfall overnight caused flash floods, affecting a number of homes.

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Comrades marathon runners
Comrades Marathon upon us
5 June 2019, 7:33 PM

The anxious wait is almost over for about 20 000 runners who are set to tackle the 94th edition of the Comrades Marathon on Sunday. The race, a so-called ‘up run’ from Durban to Pietermaritzburg this year, will test the fitness and endurance of the participants over a gruelling 86. 83 kilometres route.

Thousands of runners will line up near the Durban City Hall for a 5:30am start on Sunday morning.  The gruelling challenge, with its several infamous hills to conquer, ends 12 hours later at the Scottsville race course in the province’s capital city.

Preparations are well under way for the event which has seen a record number of entries.

“It’s the most number of entries that we had in the history of the Comrades. We have just over 25 000 entries of that 21 631 have qualified to start the race on Sunday morning. We expect about 20 000 to start,” says Race Director Rowyn James.

More than 2000 international runners have entered while a third of the field will be novices.  The most popular occupation listed by runners is manager, more than 2400 of them will take on the challenge as well as 50 plumbers, seven judges and one mayor. The Comrades expo, where runners register, opens on Thursday in Durban.

Runners were cautioned about the warm weather forecast for race day.

“It’s going to be warm day on Sunday. We’ve made more than adequate provision in terms of refreshment stations, 43 well stocked refreshments stations on the route encouraging athletes to make sure that they hydrate regularly. The rule of thumb that we use is drink to thirst, keep well hydrated and that way ensure that you stay out of the medical tent,” explains James.

The refreshments include 30 000 litres of coke, 2 million water sachets and one and a half tonne of cooked potatoes and runners can also count on the enthusiastic support all along the route to keep them going.

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Blitzboks
Blitzboks Brown calls it a day
5 June 2019, 5:44 PM

Springbok Sevens stalwart, Kyle Brown, has retired from international sevens rugby after three World Rugby Sevens Series titles with the Blitzboks and 69 tournaments in the Green and Gold. The 32-year-old Brown made his debut for the Blitzboks in the 2008/09 season in Dubai and also captained the side for two seasons, with his last stint as skipper coming in Singapore in 2018.

Brown captained the team to an historic first gold medal in Rugby Sevens at the Commonwealth Games in 2014 and also won bronze with Team South Africa at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. As a Blitzbok, Brown was part of all three Springbok Sevens squads that won the World Rugby Sevens Series in the 2008/09, 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons.

Alex
Gauteng ANC to haul Mashaba before Ethics Committee of Council
5 June 2019, 4:55 PM

The Gauteng African National Congress (ANC) says it is planning to  haul Gauteng Mayor Herman Mashaba before the Ethics Committee of Council after the City of Johannesburg took responsibility for the demolition of illegal structures in Alexandra north of Johannesburg.

City Manager Ndivhoniswani Lukhwareni admitted in the Alexandra Enquiry sitting in Braamfontein that the city authorised the demolitions.

This after Mayor Herman Mashaba made an undertaking to rebuild the houses at the City’s expense. The ANC says it was not surprised by the admission.

“The Mayor is irresponsible, he is acting outside of the bylaws so we will have to take the decision to process him through various councils which he has for a long time defied to go to the Ethics Committee of Council so we will be taking the matter with the Minister of Cooperative Governance to ensure that the Mayor is brought to book,” says Johannesburg ANC spokesperson Jolidee Matonga.

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Three initiates walking
Traditional surgeon arrested for alleged underage circumcision
5 June 2019, 2:45 PM

Eastern Cape police have arrested a 29-year-old traditional surgeon (ingcibi) who allegedly circumcised four under aged boys at Scenery Park in East London on Friday.

The father of one the boys has opened a case with the police.

The Buffalo City Circumcision Forum has already recorded seven illegal circumcisions of under aged boys since the start of the winter initiation season.

Police spokesperson, Hazel Mqala, has urged parents to always know the whereabouts of their children during this season.

“A 29 year-old male yesterday (on Tuesday) at Scenery Park in connection with unlawful circumcision, he will appear in the East London Magistrate’s Court soon. We as SAPS members, we are urging community members to look after their children especially this time of the year. The schools will be closed and the boys are going to circumcision, it may happen some, they don’t even tell their parents. They go to the bushes without the consent of the parents,” says Mqala.

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