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8 September declared Day of Prayer for gender-based violence
3 September 2019, 9:43 PM

Minister for Women Children and Persons with Disabilities Maite Nkoana-Mashabane has declared Sunday, 8 September as a day of prayer and a moment of silence in honour of women and children killed in South Africa.

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane and her Justice and Constitutional Development counterpart Ronald Lamola, along with Deputy Social Development Minister Henrietta Bogopane-Zulu were addressing the media in Cape Town on recent incidents of gender-based violence and femicide.

She said the attacks on women represented a lack of respect and failure to recognise the inherent equality and dignity of women.

The minister added that Sunday would be used as a day of reflection and that regarding violence against women and encouraged people from all walks of life and different religious organisations to “get together and make sure that this indeed comes to an end.”

Meanwhile, the ANC Women’s League has accused government of being “lukewarm” when it comes to dealing with issues of violence against women and children.

Secretary General, Meokgo Matuba has called for a National Day of mourning on Wednesday, and a stay away on Monday next week, to highlight the plight of women in the country.

The Women’s League held a media briefing at the ANC headquarters, Luthuli House in Johannesburg earlier on Tuesday evening.

Matuba says, “Our government is lukewarm and gives perpetrators a slap on the hand to those who abuse women. The State should enforce harsher sentences for violence against women and children, which should include the following: no bail for perpetrators of violence against children and women, life sentence for perpetrators of gender-based violence.”

North West municipal workers pension funds on the line
3 September 2019, 8:47 PM

Hundreds of workers at the Mahikeng Local Municipality in North West are at risk of losing their pensions.

The Financial Sector Conduct Authority has threatened to liquidate the Council’s pension fund if its R226 million deficit is not funded by next week Friday.

The Fund’s financial woes were first reported to the Pension Funds Adjudicator in 2014. By then the fund’s deficit was more than R166 million. The most severely affected are those workers who recently retired. They were informed their pension money would not be paid as expected, due to a lack of funds.

One worker expressing concern says, “I have worked at the municipality since 1994. It hurts that now that I am on pension, and expecting to get my money, I am told that the municipality has not paid. I was promised that I would get about R1.9 million, pension money. Right now, my children have nothing to eat. They attend school and I have no money for transport. It’s really a struggle because we have nothing at all. I have no money to give them for school and no food.”

In 2018, it was reported that government departments, private businesses and households owed the embattled municipality over a billion rand for services rendered. This in turn was making it difficult to for it to provide services to residents.

Sefako Makgatho Health Science University students shut down cafeteria after poisoning
3 September 2019, 8:12 PM

Disgruntled students of Sefako Makgatho Health Science University in Ga-Rankuwa, north of Pretoria, are adamant that the university’s cafeteria will not operate, and remain closed, until investigations into the tragic death of a fellow student has been completed.

Hunadi Magongoa, a second year medicine student from Limpopo, died of alleged food poisoning.

Academic activities were suspended on Tuesday for a day after students requested a period of mourning for their fellow student. A candle-lighting event with a moment of silence was held outside the locked cafeteria.

Students are demanding justice for Mahongoa.

“It’s really devastating, and the fact that we’ve been complaining about this for whole year, we are all triggered. They need to start listening to us. Yes, death is death, but since I came to this university we’ve been complaining about this [sic] – people have been vomiting though they did not die. And it’s been raised with management but nothing has been done,” commented one student.

Meanwhile, the university released the following statement in response to Magongoa’s passing:

Zandile Gumede
Gumede buckles under ANC pressure
3 September 2019, 7:43 PM

Embattled eThekwini Mayor, Zandile Gumede has agreed to step down as mayor, as officially requested by the African National Congress (ANC).

Last week, Gumede resigned as the Executive Mayor of the city but later withdrew her resignation.

The ANC’s top six national leadership re-affirmed an earlier decision, by the party’s KwaZulu-Natal leadership, to recall all its office bearers in the eThekwini Metro Council – including Mayor Gumede.

The ANC’s Deputy Secretary-General, Jessie Duarte, accompanied by the party’s provincial leadership met with party councilors in Durban to report back after Monday night’s meeting between the ANC top six and the party’s KwaZulu-Natal office bearers.

Addressing a media briefing in Durban on Tuesday, Duarte said the decision has been well received by party councilors.

“After the officials meeting last night, we had also received three separate inputs – one from Comrade Gumede, we received a letter from the caucus, and we received a report from the province. After careful consideration, we agreed that in the best interest of the ANC and the people of eThekwini we would agree that the Exco that has been requested to vacate their seats, do vacate their seats. However, they remain as councillors. We met with comrade Zandile Gumede who is very senior member of the ANC. She has accepted the decision made by the national officials.”

 

Mangosuthu Buthelezi – IFP’s legacy leader
23 August 2019, 3:54 PM

 

The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) will hold its 35th National Conference this weekend in Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal where it is widely expected that a new leader will be elected, for this first time in its 44 year history.

Take a look at its longstanding party leader, Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s life and political career highlights.

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