SANCO condemns gender based violence

By Ramotswedi Rammutla July 3, 2020

Moretele: The South African Civic Organisation SANCO in the North West Province has expressed dissatisfaction about the rising cases of gender based violence. The organisation said in a statement that it was appalled and saddened by the brutal killing of “a woman in ward 03, Moretele Local Municipality. It is alleged that the woman’s partner, Paul Mahlangu hacked her to death on Saturday, 27 June 2020 using an axe (phanga) and left her lifeless body with their helpless 5 year-old child. Subsequent to the murder of his girlfriend, Mahlangu hung himself on the same day and his body was found on Monday, 29 June 2020” said the statement from Provincial Secretary SibongileMulauzi.

SANCO Provincial Chairperson, Nki Manamela has urged community members to be each other’s protectors and report any form of violence to law enforcement. ”Gender-based violence continues to rear its ugly head in our communities and is unacceptable. Women and children are our primary concern and we plead with everyone, including the relatives of victims to speak up on abuse. Police should also prioritize the safety of victims at all times when they report such incidents as an alarming number of women feel unsafe and unprotected when reporting their perpetrators”.

DA in Ramotshere Moiloa rejects salary increases for Councillors and officials

By Ofentse Letlape July 03, 2020

Ramotshere: The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Ramothsere Moiloa Municipality has opposed a proposed 4% salary increases for Councillors and municipal officials. Pointing towards “the current economic instability and subsequent uncertainty brought by years of poor governance, compounded by the Covid-19 pandemic, calls on municipalities to restrict budgets and redirect funding towards the needs of residents” said the statement.

The municipality has been under Section 139(1)9b) administration since May 2018;“but the provincial intervention has not yielded any significant improvements in financial management or service delivery. The municipality is unable to fulfil its monthly financial obligations, revenue collection dropped from between R1.7 million – R3.5 million per month to a mere R200 000 for the months of April and May 2020” added the statement.

“Negotiations to honour the municipality’s agreement to settle the R50 million Eskom debt is underway and if no agreement is reached soon, Eskom intends to suspend electricity supply. The proposed salary increases for councillors and officials backdate to June last year, can go a long way towards settling the Eskom debt.

Politicians and municipal officials cannot continue to reward themselves with salary increases and bonuses while failing to fulfil their obligation of restoring good governance and improving service delivery” the DA reiterated.

Double murder devastates Mahikeng family

By Ofentse Letlape July 2, 2020

Mahikeng: Nothing could have prepared the Ndabambi family for two deaths at the same time, especially not when the origin of those is a family member’s actions. But now this family is preparing for a double funeral. The Ndabambis lost 24-year-old Boitumelo Ndabambi and her cousin 27-year-old Molwantwa Ndabambi recently in Signal Hill village in Mahikeng in the North West.

Molwantwa stabbed his uncle with a knife while the family was having supper on Friday evening. His cousin Boitumelo tried to stop him, but Molwantwa stabbed her to death. Sibongile said while they were trying to see how badly Boitumelo was stabbed, Molwantwa went outside the yard and within no time community members reacting to the incident attacked him until he died of his injuries. The uncle survived with a minor injury. Their deaths left Boitumelo’s mother Sibongile Ndabambi with an unbearable pain. She said even though they were cousins, the bond they had for one another was stronger than anyone else’s.

“I still cannot believe what happened. They had just arrived from their grandmother in the Free State and they died the same day,” Sibongile said. Sibongile said Molwantwa was diagnosed with schizophrenia three years ago.”He was under treatment. We do not know what triggered him. He acted out of the blue,” she said.What bothered the family were messages circulating on social media with people making up stories about Boitumelo and Molwantwa’s deaths.

“Some said it was gender-based violence, some say Molwantwa was an ex-convict. There was nothing like that. They were both my children,” said Sibongile. The family said despite his illness Molwantwa managed to complete his Civil Engineering degree at the Central University of Technology in Bloemfontein. The family said her sister Boitumelo was also a bright student who graduated with a BCom Law degree from University of the Free State and was studying towards an LLB at the same institution.

Football to resume fixture

By Ramotswedi Rammutla July 1, 2020

Mahikeng: As world sports resume training and matches in July the local Premier Soccer League, PSL which resumed training recently is expected back in full force with closed venue fixtures. This after Minister of Arts, Culture and Sport, Nathi Mthethwa, announced the resumption of the football matches. Matches may resume after three months with North West also earmarked to host teams and fixtures.

Mthethwa said PSL plans have been approved, considering the mitigation strategies and plans in relation to the Level 3 risk adjusted strategy in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The plans have further been subject to analysis by health authorities, the NICD (National Institute of Communicable Diseases), who have recommended that the measures put in place by the organisation meet and in some instances exceed the required protocol for a safe return to training and to play in a biologically safe environment,” he said.

The league was halted in March, with Kaizer Chiefs on top of the log with 48 points, followed by defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns behind by just four points. Black Leopards was at the bottom of the league table. The Nedbank Cup was also in the semi-final stage when play was stopped due to COVID-19. The news of the return of PSL matches come a day after two Kaizer Chiefs players tested positive for the virus. Bloemfontein Celtic also confirmed that one of its players tested positive.

The South African Football Association (SAFA) welcomed the return to soccer training and matches.

“The green light from the Minister means the work on the implementation of the document can start,” SAFA said in a statement. SAFA has appointed Chief Medical Officer, Dr Thulani Ngwenya, as the Compliance Officer to oversee the appropriate implementation of the whole process and that everything on the protocol document is adhered to.“Once the return to training meets all the requirements and the biological safe environment has been identified as stipulated in the protocol, the second part of the return to play kicks in…” added SAFA.

 

Enough with unannounced load shedding

By Ofentse Letlape July 1, 2020

Mahikeng: Residents of Mahikeng villages in the North West have criticized Eskom for the power outages that happen in their areas unannounced. Villagers in Ramatlabama, Lorwaneng and Lomanyaneng villages expressed their frustrations about the power cuts that have been happening every evening for weeks now.

They said their electrical appliances got damaged when electricity is restored. Leboy Leshomo from Lorwaneng village said he’s angry that Eskom has never given reasons for power outages in their villages.

“Exactly at 5pm every day there are power cuts that will end around 10pm at night. And when power returns it damages our electrical appliances. Not so long ago I had to fix my television because of the electricity that comes and goes.”

“This week is the 4th week that we are experiencing power cuts and we have never heard any explanation. So we are calling on Eskom and government to tell them that we have had enough of these power cuts,” Leshomo said.

“The problem is they happen without warning in the mornings, then in the evenings, sometimes even twice in one day. I am a student at the North West University studying from home and have to submit online, when the power goes down, so does the cell phone towers we use to access online resources. This has caused me not to submit on time at times; and gets frustrating if you had not known when it will occur. This includes important communication as we lose all connectivity” said Masego Sello in Ramatlabama.

Keamogetse Mokgatla of Lomanyaneng village said power cuts are costing them dearly. “I’m really concerned because the power cuts happen every day and around that time some of us are at work we can’t switch off our electrical appliances. They get damaged and even our food gets rotten in the freezer. Eskom must really make a plan and see how it solves this issue,” Mokgatla said.

But Eskom’s manager in the North West, Ezekiel Baruti, said the power outages are caused by pressure triggered by illegal connections. “The power outages are caused by overloading as a result of customers drawing electricity at the same time, while other customers have connected electricity illegally, others tempered with the meters and others are using ghost electricity. And overloading is also caused by customers who have undeclared backrooms that are not registered with Eskom and are drawing a lot of power,” said Baruti.

Meanwhile, Eskom has urged all community members to report any unsafe and illegal power conditions or connections that they come across by calling 08600 ESKOM (37566). These include exposed electrical wiring, low-hanging cables, and illegal connections, vandalised electrical equipment such as substations and exposed electrical cables due to theft or vandalism.

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