Category Archives: Key Issues

Pipeline repair work in Bellville South Industria: Residents and businesses advised to expect low pressure

The City of Cape Town advises consumers in the Bellville South area of urgent maintenance work to be done on a water pipeline in Iscor Street, Bellville South Industria

The City of Cape Town advises consumers in the Bellville South area of urgent maintenance work to be done on a water pipeline in Iscor Street, Bellville South Industria.

The planned maintenance work will take place from Monday, 17 September 2018 until Friday, 21 September 2018 between 20:00 and 03:00 each day.

The entire Bellville South area as far as Glenhaven could be affected. Residents and business owners in the area can expect to experience low water pressure or no water at all during these periods.

The City apologises for any inconvenience caused and will ensure that water trucks are made available at strategic locations to minimise the impact of these disruptions on consumers.

Customers are asked to keep between 5 to 10 litres of drinking water for essential use if required but are requested not to store water excessively as any outages are expected to be temporary.

Please also keep taps closed to prevent water damage in the event of water being restored after a supply disruption.

Source: City of Cape Town

Labour wraps up consultations with Private Security Sector

Department of Labour to wrap consultations with Private Security Sector on prescribed minimum wages and conditions of employment

The Department of Labour is planning to wind-off a public consultation process with the stakeholders in the Private Security sector with a view to amend the current prescribed minimum wages and conditions of employment for the Private Security Sector.

The last in a series of public hearings with the Private Security sector will be held on Monday (17 September) at the Department of Labour offices at Laboria House at Corner of Compound & Pniel Streets in Kimberley, Northern Cape.

Although the sector recently registered Bargaining Council, they have not concluded a collective agreement hence the current sectoral determination will still be enforce. The current prescribed minimum wages in the sector expired on the 31 August 2018.

The Employment Conditions Commission (ECC), a body that advices Labour Minister on minimum wages and conditions of employment of vulnerable workers – has taken a decision to conduct public hearings in all the provinces in order to give employers and employees an opportunity to make their inputs.

The department started with its public hearings on 10 September in Rustenburg, Polokwane and Pretoria. This was followed by hearings on 12 September in Durban and Cape Town. On 14 September consultation hearings were held in Nelspruit, Bloemfontein and East London.

The last Private Sector Public hearing will start at 10:00am.

Source: Government of South Africa

Cash-Strapped Sudan to Form Leaner New Government in Two Days

Sudan will form a new government within two days, President Omar al-Bashir said on Monday, a day after he dissolved the cash-strapped administration and slashed the number of ministries by a third to tackle a deepening economic crisis.

Sudan has been looking to cut down spending as it grapples with a crisis-ridden economy battered in recent months by shortages of hard currency and staples like fuel and bread.

After an emergency ruling party meeting to discuss the economy on Sunday, Bashir named a new prime minister, Motazz Moussa, and asked him to form a tighter government of 21 ministers instead of 31 as part of efforts to cut costs.

Speaking on state television on Monday, Bashir said the new government would look to slash government spending “to a minimum” but did not specify the nature of the cuts.

“Within the next two days a national reconciliation government will be formed to implement a program to reduce government spending, reform the civil service, eradicate all forms of corruption, and provide an attractive environment for investment,” the longtime president said.

The ministries to be shelved have not yet been announced, but a ruling party official said on Sunday that the ministers of foreign affairs, defense and presidential affairs would remain in their posts.

Sudan’s decision to reduce bread subsidies earlier this year triggered rare nationwide protests after bread prices doubled.

A severe shortage of hard currency in the formal banking system has led to a booming black market for dollars where the hard currency currently trades for a roughly 40 percent premium.

This premium has hiked the cost of imports and helped push inflation to about 64 percent in July.

In recent months liquidity of local currency at commercial banks has also dried up, with long queues outside of banks and daily withdrawal limits falling to as low as 500 Sudanese pounds ($17.06) in some places.

Sudan’s economy has been struggling since the south of the sprawling northeast African country seceded in 2011, taking with it three-quarters of oil output and depriving Khartoum of a crucial source of foreign currency.

Bashir, who has ruled since a 1989 Islamist and military-backed coup, has said he will not stand in elections expected in 2020 and appointed a prime minister last year for the first time.

Source: Voice of America

Deputy Minister Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu hosts 9-9-9 Campaign against Foetal Alcohol Syndrome community dialogue in Keimos

Women who consume alcohol during pregnancy should be arrested, Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu tells the community of Keimoes

The community dialogues of the 9-9-9 Campaign Against Foetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) which is championed by the Deputy Minister of Social Development, Mrs Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, are currently underway at the Cacadu Tribal Council in Umtata, Eastern Cape.

The campaign, which aims to create awareness about the dangers associated with consuming alcohol during pregnancy, is in line with the mandate of the Department of Social Development (DSD) to lead in the implementation of innovative prevention programmes to achieve the vision of a society free of drug abuse as set in the National Drug Master Plan.

According to statistics, South Africa is currently leading globally with a FAS prevalence of 6-29%. Out of 187 countries, a rate of 111 per 1,000 people are born with the condition in South Africa.

We cannot be leaders in such. We need to be achievers in positive things. Consuming alcohol during pregnancy is robbing babies of their future and robbing our communities of even more. Drinking during pregnancy should be a criminal offence. Women who drink during pregnancy should be locked up, said Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu to the community of Keimoes in the Northern Cape on day six of the nine-day long campaign.

She then encouraged the community to share their experiences with FAS at which point an elderly lady, who has two grandchildren born with FAS, shared her day-to-day trauma. My daughter gave birth to twins some years ago. They both have the condition but one is worse than the other. You can imagine how as twins, they are obviously compared to one another all the time. It is enough that they both have FAS but to now also have one struggling more than the other makes it unbearable at school and at home. My daughter still continues to drink. I do not think she realises the damage she has caused. I urge the community to help women to stop drinking, especially during pregnancy, she pleaded.

Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu, responding to a number of problems that were raised by the community of this small town just outside of Upington, added that there are other DSD programmes that should work hand-in-hand with the 9-9-9 Campaign in order for the campaign’s goals to be achieved.

Behavioural change is not a short-term initiative. We cannot sit here and say we need women to stop drinking during pregnancy and expect results tomorrow. It does not work like that. We need to engage constantly and make use of available programmes to ensure long-term results, she said and mentioned the following currently-running programmes that DSD is involved in:

Binge Drinking

Behavioural Change

Under Age Drinking

Smart Drinking Squad

Don’t Drink and Walk

Drug Awareness

Children from a nearby primary school, Keimoes RK Laerskool, who joined the dialogues to entertain the participants with traditional song and dance, also expressed how they can recognise children with FAS because of their different features. They have small eyes, small faces, thin lips but their heads and ears are big. They look different, said one grade 8 pupil.

The FAS dialogues are continuing tomorrow at the Osizweni Special School, in Mpumalanga. The campaign drive in Osizweni will be different in a sense that the Department of Social Development, in partnership with the MTNSA Foundation, will also be launching computer laboratories with specialised programmes for children with FAS. The two computer centres will be at the Osizweni and Basizeni Special Schools in Embalenhle – Mpumalanga.

Source: Government of South Africa

Banyana Banyana can defend the COSAFA title – Ramalepe

Lebohang Ramalepe’s face beams with a wide smile when she reminisces about her first penalty goal for Banyana Banyana in last year’s COSAFA Women’s Championship semi-final clash against Zambia in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

In that epic penultimate game, South Africa had produced an impressive comeback in the last 18 minutes of the match to hold ‘She-polopolo’ of Zambia to an amazing, come-from-behind 3-3 draw.

Banyana coach Desiree Ellis selected the first four players who were going to take the pressure-cooker spot kicks. However, for the crucial fifth one, the coach instead asked if any player was keen on taking the penalty kick and up stepped Ramalepe.

I remember that moment very well, Ramalepe recalls. Coach Desiree asked who was keen on taking the last kick of the penalty shoot-outs and everybody just went dead quiet for a good five seconds.

I do not know what got to me. I just remember lifting up my hand to volunteer to take it. I do not know where that confidence came from. Never in my life had I scored a penalty in Banyana colours. That was my first and only goal. And that is why I went on my knees on the spot when I scored it. I could not celebrate. I just froze there (in disbelief).

That penalty goal by Ramalepe saw Banyana progressing to the final, where they went on to beat hosts Zimbabwe 2-1 in the final day of the tournament at Barbourfields Stadium.

The Banyana right-back concedes that winning last year’s COSAFA tournament was one of her proudest moments in her career since she started playing for Banyana.

Ramalepe said as for this year’s addition, they really need to work hard if they are to stand a chance of going all the way to defend their title.

It feels good to be going into this year’s tournament as defending champions, Ramalepe says. It comes with a whole lot of responsibility though. We know for a fact that as defending champions, opposing sides are going to come hard at us to deny victory.

But we are well prepared and motivated. We are doing this for our families, the country and the badge, she concluded.

Source: South African Football Association