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Mixed reactions from opposition parties on newly elected National Assembly Speaker Mapisa-Nqakula
19 August 2021, 6:03 PM

The  Democratic Alliance (DA) says they are deeply concerned about the integrity and the ethical conduct of the new Speaker of the National Assembly, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.

Mapisa-Nqakula, nominated by the  African National Congress (ANC), received two-thirds of the votes during the election of the Speaker for the South African National Assembly.

Voting was conducted via secret ballot on Thursday. The only other candidate was the DA’s Dr Annelie Lotriet.

Some opposition political parties criticised her nomination – saying she faces serious corruption allegations.

The DA’s Chief Whip, Natasha Mazzone says she foresees chaos in Parliament.

“We as members of Parliament should be extremely concerned about the integrity and the ethical conduct of the Speaker of Parliament. She also heads the disciplinary process of Parliament. She herself is going to go through the disciplinary inquiry in our very Parliament and if she does that, she will have to be suspended or take special leave at that time. So it is just beyond comprehension to think that today she has won,” says Mazzone.

Meanwhile,  Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) says it will fully support the newly elected National Assembly Speaker.

The ANC caucus had nominated Mapisa-Nqakula in the face of strong criticism from some opposition parties who said the former Defence Minister was facing serious corruption claims.

IFP Chief Whip Narend Singh says he expects Mapisa-Nqakula to keep to the commitment that she made of working with all political parties in the House.

“Although the IFP made its intentions known that we were not comfortable with the person of Mapisa Nqakula to have been nominated,  we respect the fact that the House has spoken as there has been a result.  The IPF pledges its full support to the Speaker and to that office and we would expect that the Speaker would reciprocate by respecting all political parties big or small,” says Singh .

VIDEO: Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula elected new National Assembly speaker

Former Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula has been elected as the new Speaker of the National Assembly in South Africa.

The vacancy occurred following the recent appointment of former Speaker Thandi Modise to cabinet as new Defence Minister.

Newly-elected National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula gives an acceptance speech

 

 

WHO sets 30 percent vaccination target for Africa by end 2021
30 July 2021, 7:59 PM

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says more focus should be directed to the African continent to ensure that more than 30 per cent of the population is vaccinated by the end of this year.

It says more resources should be made available to the continent to speed up the vaccination process. WHO senior advisor to the Director-General, Dr Bruce Aylward, says, unfortunately, Africa is currently not controlling decisions on vaccine manufacturing.

He has called on companies that are in control of the vaccines to ensure that they reach the African continent so that they can boost vaccine coverage levels.

“There is absolutely no reason that should be the case, there are enough vaccines in the world. There is enough money in the world. There is absorbed capacity. How do we shift more product in the pipeline so that we can make sure that realistically we are well over 20 percent, 30 percent by the end of this year and ideally we are up to 40 percent.”

Royal family invited to the reading of Queen Mantfombi’s last will on Friday: Buthelezi
7 May 2021, 4:44 PM

AmaZulu Traditional Prime Minister, Inkosi Mangosuthu Buthelezi says the will of the late regent – Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu – will probably map the way forward for the monarchy after the passing of King Goodwill Zwelithini.

Buthelezi made the announcement at the end of the official memorial service for Queen Mantfombi, outside her palace at Nongoma.

He says the royal family will have a meeting on Friday afternoon to discuss the will following the passing of Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu.

She was interred on Thursday night – in a private ceremony at her palace kwaNongoma in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

Advocate TG  Madonsela will also be part of the royal family meeting. Buthelezi spoke to SABC News after the memorial service.

“I have already announced that the royal family is going to meet today. Because an advocate from the High Court, a Senior Counsel, Advocate Madonsela, will come to read the will of the late Queen. So we will know our way forward at that time. And we will announce it to the media because the media, I suppose, you will still be around.”

Memorial service

Earlier, members of the AmaZulu and Eswatini royal families, former President Jacob Zuma, government ministers and amakhosi from different areas attended the memorial service of the late AmaZulu regent.  There was a sombre mood among mourners, especially women and maidens, who had close contact with the Queen.

Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi says he was looking forward to the contribution Queen Mantfombi would have made when she was appointed regent only about a month ago.

Queen Mantfombi’s memorial service in full: 

Call for unity

Both KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala and the chairperson of the province’s House of traditional leaders Inkosi Phathisiwe Chiliza have called for unity among members of the royal family.

This as King Goodwill Zwelithini’s first wife Queen Sibongile and two of her daughters challenge his will in court. Elders in the royal family have also called into question Buthelezi’s position as prime minister.

Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma paid tribute to the queen’s work with women.

“She was always supportive of the development of women and children especially the maidens. She was against the abuse of women and children. The Queen was giving direction to the young children.”

Delivering the eulogy Zikalala said the queen leaves a lasting legacy. “The work and legacy of the Queen will remain behind and it will be difficult to erase. We, as the government of KwaZulu-Natal, will always support unity and peace among the Royal family.”

Vaal clean-up timeframe yet to be determined
21 January 2020, 3:15 PM

A company tasked with cleaning up the Vaal River system says it is difficult to determine the timeframe in which the project will be completed. It says more work needs to be done in terms of assessments.

Ekurhuleni Water-Care Company (ERWAT) has been appointed to take over the project from the South African National Defence Force (SANDF).

Also read | Sisulu to assess Vaal River clean-up efforts
Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu will on Tuesday visit the Vaal Intervention Project, in Vereeniging.

 
 
SANDF’s intervention ended in November 2019. However, ERWAT Managing Director, Tumelo Gopane, says the aging infrastructure of the Vaal River system makes it more difficult to speed up the process.

“Unless you have got inside the networks and understand the extent of the work, it’s virtually impossible to give a firm figure of both cost and timeframes. The next step is we are going to unblock the rest of the tertiary real bulk lines as well as clean up the plants and the pump stations. And once you have opened them, you are able to do more detailed engineering and scientific assessment.”

See map below for some of the most affected areas by pollution on the Vaal River:

Below is a timeline of the Vaal Intervention Project:

Slain Sebokeng learner to be laid to rest
12 October 2019, 11:03 AM

The funeral service for Tshepo Mpehlo, the learner who was fatally stabbed, is underway at the AFM church in zone 10, Sebokeng on the Vaal.

Mpehlo was stabbed to death, allegedly by a fellow learner with a pair of scissors, in the premises of Thuto Tiro Comprehensive School.

He died on the scene on Monday.

Dozens of learners, educators and community members have packed the AFM church for the funeral service with numerous speakers paying tribute.

The principal of the school says in his entire teaching career, this is the first incident of its kind to happen under his watch. He has appealed to his learners to take the incident as a learning curve on how they should conduct themselves.

Gauteng MEC for Education Panyaza Lesufi is also expected to attend the funeral.

Mpehlo will be laid to rest at the Vanderbijlpark cemetery.

 

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