Daily Archives: March 27, 2014

Shocking but Not Surprising – SA Sport’s Transformation and Development At Grassroots Level [analysis]

South Africa’s Mr. Razmatazz has promised serious action following the release of an interim transformation report on sport in South Africa. While most sporting bodies still have a long way to go, the struggles with facilities at grassroots level was the most shocking of the whole thing.

Fikile Mbalula, with his usual exuberance, criticised the lack of transformation in sport in South Africa while revealing something everybody already knew: some teams are quite white. (Really.) This also highlighted once again the need for the development of facilities at grassroots level. That is something the government can assist with instead of spending money on things like, say, a very expensive awards ceremony.

The Transformation Status Report 2013, from the Eminent Persons Group (EPG) on Transformation in Sport was released on Tuesday, and the Minister said his department would oversee the establishment of the committees which were recommended in the report.

He went further and threatened an end to support from government, while adding that “the quota system is unsustainable and counterproductive”.

“The national anthem, national colours and national symbols can no longer be used to honour and decorate events of racist, sexist and divisive sports bodies,” Mbalula said….

Source : Daily Maverick

Police Major General Believes Khayelitsha Police Have Enough Resources

On March 26, the Khayelitsha Commission of Inquiry heard testimony from Major General Renee Fick. To some, it didn’t seemed Fick was speaking about the same Khayelitsha as the one the commission has heard about so far.

Fick is deputy provincial commissioner for physical resource management of the SAPS. Apparently, she believes the police in Khayelitsha have sufficient resources.

She acknowledged that physical space, office and storage spaces in police stations is a concern, but she stated that human resources, vehicles and technological resources, such as computers, are sufficient in Khayelitsha and in the province generally.

So far the commission has heard that there are not sufficient vehicles, and that roughly 30% of the vehicles available are in for repair at any given time.

Fick said Khayelitsha stations had enough vehicles, though the there was concern about the age of the vehicles.

SAPS flag and vehicle on display at the recent Crime Summit in Khayelitsha. Resources were readily available that day, but are they always there for the officers and the people of Khayelitsha? Photo by Adam Armg.

Fick’s evidence was in stark contrast to that submitted by officers operating in Khayelitsha. Cluster Commander Brigadier Dladla, who oversees all three police stations in Khayelitsha, said that the Khayelitsha officers were overburdened and doing the best they could. Colonel John Marais, Head of the Detective Unit at Khayelitsha Site B, stated: “Even if we double the current staff complement, it’s not going to be enough”.

Her evidence also contradicts Brigadier Rabie, who yesterday said SAPS operational budget is roughly 33% lower than the theoretical requirement.

Two retired police officers, former deputy provincial commissioner Major General Glenn Schooling and Lieutenant Colonel Martin Leamy, in their report to the commission, stated of Lingelethu West Police Station: “from a logistical support point of view there is a lack of computers, printers, telephones and hand radios at LW SAPS. For instance the station had 5 computers, 4 linked to mainframe and 2 printers, but RAG allocated 13 computers. There are only eight offices available for 34 detective personnel and there is no area for the public to use as a waiting room”.

The Leamy and Schooling report also highlights a letter received from the station commissioner at Khayelitsha Site B police station in 2012 that 31 out of 109 (28.5%) of the vehicles available were in a ‘fair’ to ‘bad’ condition.

In his cross-examination, A Michael Bishop, representing the Complainant Organisations, pointed out that Fick and her team do not consider what the resource need actually is. They only distribute what is available in the best way they think possible.

General Fick’s evidence is not central to the argument of the complainant organisations. It is unclear how it will affect the overall outcome of the commission.

Zackie Achmat, who has been a vocal critic of various SAPS officers, said that General Fick’s testimony was fair given her role and the hierarchical, bureaucratic nature of SAPS. Achmat said Fick is limited by the rules for resource allocation she allocates physical resources to human resources, and human resources are allocated by a department separate to hers. Achmat sees the problems with resource allocation as symptomatic of a large, centralised organisation.

Fick however failed to point out the qualitative issues within supply chain management. In supply chain management performance assessment documents, also submitted as evidence, a number of irregularities were noted. There were irregularities with contract management and processing of payment for supplies. 35 files documenting supplier information and invoices were inspected in 2012. Only four were found to be in order.

The Commission will continue to hear evidence from senior officers this week.

Source : GroundUp

Pistorius Trial – Has the State Done Enough? [analysis]

When state prosecutor Gerrie Nel announced on Tuesday that the state’s case against Pistorius rested, many members of the public expressed a sense of ‘is that it?’ Of course, it doesn’t matter in the slightest what we all think about the state’s case – the only opinions that count are those of Judge Thokozile Masipa and her two assessors. Nonetheless, REBECCA DAVIS took a look at the possible strengths and weaknesses of the state’s case.

A caller to a local radio station yesterday suggested that now that the duration of the Pistorius trial has been extended to mid-May, prosecutor Gerrie Nel should have taken more time, called more witnesses, and generally used some extra days to strengthen the state’s case against Pistorius.

But as lawyers will tell you, this isn’t how it works. Calling more witnesses does not inevitably lead to a ger case in fact, it can mean the opposite, as the chances of them contradicting each other’s testimony grow with each new arrival to the stand. Nel, as one of the top aocates in the country, will have presented the gest case that the state felt capable of making. He will have conducted in-depth interviews with each of…

Source : Daily Maverick

Berg and Bush Riders Race for Reading

Children at four rural schools in the Central Drakensberg will be given a chance to discover the world of books when the FedGroup Berg amp Bush embarks on its library project on 1 April.

According to organiser Gary Green, the eighth edition of the KwaZulu-Natal mountain bike stage race taking place in October, will provide a journey of discovery for both participants and beneficiaries.

The event aims to hand over basic library furniture and new books to four junior farm schools situated near Emseni Camp just outside Winterton. Green said, “The book handouts will be managed by local farmers’ wives, most of whom are former teachers. If the venture is successful this year, we’ll expand to the senior school in the township where the need is also great.” The beneficiary schools are Schietsdrift Primary near Winterton, Middledale and Ekukhanyeni schools in the vicinity of Ladysmith and Ekajesu Cregraveche adjacent to the Spioenkop Nature Reserve.

Photographer: Kelvin Trautman

Some 500 learners between the ages of three and 13 will benefit from the project. In previous years, the race has been able to donate solar panels and rainwater tanks to local communities, as well as repair 5km of game fence along the boundary of Spioenkop Nature Reserve. Last year, sponsor JoJo Tanks matched the riders’ donations and the funds were used to purchase 25 tanks and gutters for households along the route.

Riders in the 2014 event will have the option to donate to this cause when entering on the official website. “Members of the public are also welcome to contact us to get involved,” he said.

Source : Biz-Community

Nkandla – Can the Voices of Morality Pull the ANC From the Edge? [analysis]

“For people like us, it’s not like asking where were you when the planes hit the Twin Towers. It’s like we watched the hijackers being recruited and trained, infiltrating the country, learning how to fly planes, boarding the aircraft, slitting the throats of the pilots and then flying the planes into the towers.

And now we are watching the towers falling down.” This is the voice of an ANC veteran, so angered by the decay in his organisation, epitomised by the Nkandla scandal, that he has resorted to self-loathing. Others cry, some search for ways to intervene, most shake their heads in desperation. The Nkandla issue has provoked a range of reactions in South African society, and for many in the old guard of the ANC, it marks the point of no return.

Which ANC? This is a question which has come up over the past few days as people lamented the ruling party’s reaction to Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s report on the upgrades at President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla residence. A distinction is being made between the current democratically elected leadership of the ANC and the legend of the liberation organisation with its litany of selfless heroes….

Source : Daily Maverick