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Traditional
A traditional healer in Kimberly faces abuse allegations from initiates
8 May 2021, 9:38 AM

A traditional healer in Kimberley in the Northern Cape is facing allegations of abuse from his initiates.

The traditional healer allegedly beat an initiate and denied food and electricity to initiates, among other things.

They say they have since opened an assault case against him. They say they regret going to the healer.

An initiate says, “…This whole side I was blue. I am broken, I am not pretending. People don’t know the abuse we suffer against a bo gobela.”

Another says, “I wanted nothing to do with the gift because I felt failed. I even felt like my ancestors failed me by bringing me to that person. I struggled to a point where I needed toilet paper.”

The accused traditional healer is said to be in hiding. His organisation maintains he is innocent.

Speaking for the Traditional Healers Organisation in Kimberley, Nomvula Molusi says, “Sometimes we are a bit harsh on them but it doesn’t mean it is assault. We are going to wait for the police to come and investigate as well. If they need to question us, they are more than welcome to question us.”

Traditional wedding
AmaMpondomise King Matiwane takes second wife, Princess Langa
8 May 2021, 8:34 AM

The amaMpondomise King Luzuko Matiwane has taken his second wife, Princess Siyonwabele Langa, in a customary marriage, as instructed by his nation.

According to customs, the first wife will remain an ordinary wife, while the chosen princess will enjoy more benefits than the queen mother of the nation.

African traditions allow for a King to have more than one wife. The amaMpondomise kingdom, situated in the Tsolo/Qumbu area in the Eastern Cape, had just recently had their kingship restored.

The nation’s spokesperson, Lulama Ngcukaitobi, says Princess Siyonwabele Langa will give birth to the son that will take over the spear of kingship as a form of succession.

“The queen must agree if the king has to take another wife, so there is no problem as long as there is an agreement and it’s a practice in a democratized fashion. Even cultures evolve as you know so even the polygamy itself is an evolving cultural practice.”

The tradition of polygamy questioned

Gender activists are opposed to cultural practices that violate women and children’s rights.

Activist Nomsisi Batha says the practices violating women’s rights must end.

“This scourge of polygamous marriages must come to an end. I know that some of the people will say as an activist I should be aware that traditions and cultures are protected by the Constitution but if they violate other people’s rights then they should not be done. They should come to an end.”

Police
Israeli police, Palestinians clash at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa, scores injured
8 May 2021, 7:59 AM

Israeli police fired rubber bullets and stun grenades towards rock-hurling Palestinian youth at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque on Friday amid growing anger over the potential eviction of Palestinians from homes on land claimed by Jewish settlers.

At least 205 Palestinians and 17 officers were injured in the night-time clashes at Islam’s third-holiest site and around East Jerusalem, Palestinian medics and Israeli police said, as thousands of Palestinians faced off with several hundred Israeli police in riot gear.

Tension has mounted in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, with nightly clashes in East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah, a neighbourhood where numerous Palestinian families face eviction in a long-running legal case.

Calls for calm and restraint poured in on Friday from the United States and the United Nations, with others including the European Union and Jordan voicing alarm at the possible evictions.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians packed into the hilltop compound surrounding the mosque earlier on Friday for prayers. Many stayed on to protest against the evictions in the city at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

But following the evening meal that breaks the Ramadan fast, clashes broke out at Al-Aqsa with smaller scuffles near Sheikh Jarrah, which sits near the walled Old City’s famous Damascus Gate.

Police used water cannons mounted on armoured vehicles to disperse several hundred protesters gathered near the homes of families facing potential eviction.

“If we don’t stand with this group of people here,(evictions) will (come) to my house, her house, his house and to every Palestinian who lives here,” said protester Bashar Mahmoud, 23, from the nearby Palestinian neighbourhood of Issawiya.

‘CALM DOWN AND BE QUIET’

An Aqsa official appealed for calm on the compound through the mosque’s loudspeakers. “Police must immediately stop firing stun grenades at worshippers, and the youth must calm down and be quiet!”

Israel’s Supreme Court will hold a hearing on the Sheikh Jarrah evictions on Monday, the same day that Israel marks Jerusalem Day – the annual celebration of its capture of East Jerusalem during the 1967 Middle East war.

The Palestine Red Crescent ambulance service said 108 of the Palestinians injured were taken to hospital, with many hit with rubber-coated metal bullets.

One of the injured lost an eye, two suffered serious headwounds and two had their jaws fractured, the Red Crescent said. Most of the rest of the injuries were minor, it added.

A police spokeswoman said Palestinians had thrown rocks, fireworks and other objects towards officers, with about half of the 17 injured requiring medical treatment in hospital.

“We will respond with a heavy hand to any violent disturbance, rioting or harm to our officers, and will work to find those responsible and bring them to justice,” the spokeswoman said.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said he “held (Israel) responsible for the dangerous developments and sinful attack staking place in the holy city” and called on the UN Security Council to hold an urgent session on the issue.

Violence has also increased in the occupied West Bank, where two Palestinian gunmen were killed and a third critically injured on Friday after they opened fire at an Israeli base, police said. After that incident, Israel’s military said it would send additional combat troops to the West Bank.

‘PLAYING WITH FIRE’

Sheikh Jarrah’s residents are overwhelmingly Palestinian, but the neighbourhood also contains a site revered by religious Jews as the tomb of an ancient high priest, Simon the Just.

The spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said the evictions, “if ordered and implemented, would violate Israel’s obligations under international law” on East Jerusalem territory it captured and occupied, along with the West Bank, from neighbouring Jordan in 1967.

“We call on Israel to immediately halt all forced evictions, including those in Sheikh Jarrah, and to cease any activity that would further contribute to a coercive environment and lead to a risk of forcible transfer,” spokesman Rupert Colville said on Friday.

Washington was “deeply concerned about the heightened tensions in Jerusalem,” said US State Department spokeswoman Jalina Porter.

“As we head into a sensitive period in the days ahead, it will be critical for all sides to ensure calm and act responsibly to deescalate tensions and avoid violent confrontation,” Porter said.

The European Union, Jordan and the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council have expressed alarm at the potential evictions.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said Jordan had given the Palestinian Authority documents that he said showed the Sheikh Jarrah Palestinians were the “legitimate owners” of their homes.

Israel’s “provocative steps in occupied Jerusalem and violation of Palestinian rights, including the rights of the people of Sheikh Jarrah in their homes, is playing with fire, “Safadi said in a foreign ministry statement on Twitter.

Israel’s foreign ministry said on Friday that Palestinians were “presenting a real-estate dispute between private parties as a nationalist cause, in order to incite violence in Jerusalem.” Palestinians rejected the allegation.

Coronavirus
3rd COVID-19 wave could be less severe provided virus does not mutate: Prof Madhi
8 May 2021, 6:58 AM

Professor of Vaccinology at Wits University Shabir Madhi says the COVID-19 third-wave could be less severe provided the virus does not mutate into yet another new, more dangerous variant. He was addressing the media in Johannesburg as part of the Gauteng COVID Command council on Friday.

He predicts that the COVID-19 third wave will hit Gauteng in three weeks time. He says some people in Gauteng have some resistance after being infected in the past.

Madhi says people should nevertheless be vaccinated. He says there’s a need to speedily roll out the vaccination programme, especially in high-risk groups.

“The target is to get 40-million people vaccinated. In fact, we don’t need to get 40-million people to get to a relatively normal lifestyle. What we need to do is get 80 to 90% of the high-risk groups vaccinated. And if we can do that we can get back to a normal lifestyle. COVID-19 is going to be here for the rest of our lifetime, we need to be comfortable with that. But it is about protecting people from dying. And it is about preventing our hospitals from being overwhelmed and the way to do that is to vaccinate high-risk individuals.

INFOGRAPHIC: South Africa showing signs of imminent COVID-19 third wave:

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SA records over 2 000 COVID cases in last 24 hours

South Africa recorded more than 2 000 new coronavirus cases for the third day in a row. The country has since the last reporting period recorded 2 256 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the cumulative number of cases in the country to 1 592 626.

The death toll has climbed to 54 687 after 67 new deaths were also reported on Friday.

Most of the new fatalities are from the Limpopo, which has recorded 26 deaths.

“Today, 67 more COVID-19 related deaths have been reported: Eastern Cape 1, Free State 0, Gauteng 13, KwaZulu-Natal 5, Limpopo 26, Mpumalanga 2, North West 0, Northern Cape 10 and Western Cape 10; which brings the total to 54 687 deaths. We convey our condolences to the loved ones of the departed and thank the health care workers who treated the deceased patients,” says Health Minister, Dr Zweli Mkhize, in a statement.

Below are the latest COVID-19 stats: 

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Former rugby player and murder accused Zane Killian appears in court
7 May 2021, 12:37 PM

Former rugby player and murder accused Zane Killian has appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s court alongside alleged underworld boss Nafiz Modack, and two co-accused.

The four face charges of extortion, money laundering, kidnapping and intimidation. Killian also faces a charge of murder in connection with the killing of top cop, Charl Kinnear, who was gunned down in 2020.

He appeared in the dock together with Nafiz Modak, Jacque Cronje and Ricardo Morgan.

Modak, Cronje and Morgan were arrested last week near Century City following a high-speed car chase.

The case has been postponed to 14 May 2021.

In the video below are details of Killian being linked to the attempted murder of William Booth:

Weather

 

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