Daily Archives: May 22, 2018


DURBAN — South African police have launched a huge search for three children who were in a car which was hijacked at Madadeni outside Newcastle in northern part of KwaZulu-Natal Province on Monday.

The children, aged between six and 11 years, were on their way to school when the car was hijacked.

KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Thembeka Mbhele said the the hijackers misled the driver of the car to stop by indicating that the car had a flat tyre.

Mbhele said there were six kids in the car, three males and three females, and when the driver got out of the car to check what was going on, thessuspects approached him, threatening him with a knife.

Mbhele said three of the children managed to escape but the suspects fled the scene using the hijacked BMW, which is silver in colour.

The police are still searching for the suspects as well as the children. There is a case of carjacking that is being investigated, said Mbhele.



JOHANNESBURG– South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA), described President Cyril Ramaphosa’s swearing-in on Feb 15 as bringing new hope after the misrule of former President Jacob Zuma, who almost brought the country’s credit standing to junk status.

The party has now described Ramaphosa’s first 100 days in office as “hype without action” and gave the president a performance score rating of six out 10.

It said here Monday that his promise to fight corruption had been hamstrung by the African National Congress party’s patronage to its corrupt leaders. The DA said factionalism within the ruling party had taken precedence over his promises to the nation.

The opposition party blames him for failing to take bold steps against corrupt leaders with close ties to Zuma.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane said Ramaphosa’s failure to reduce the size of the Cabinet is also a challenge.

When you look at the Cabinet it consists 35 ministers and 37 deputy ministers. Salaries of the ministers amount to 163.5 million Rand (about 12.9 million) in 2018 and 510.5 million Rand over the mid-term.

The DA said that despite the President’s hype to improve the economy, it remains nothing but rhetoric. We call on President Ramaphosa to introduce a national civilian service where young people can enter work-based training in the community healthcare, basic education and SAPS (South African Police Service) fields.

The DA’s John Steenhuisen, the Opposition Chief Whip in Parliament, also raised an alarm about the spiralling violent protests in some parts of the country, holding the president responsible for failing to appoint professionals in the security services.

Both the SAPS and our national intelligence services need a massive overhaul and what needs to happen is that intelligence services are professionalised and are focussing on intelligence that affect national security of the country instead of focusing on factionalism within the ruling party.

The DA also weighed in on the programme of land expropriation without compensation and accused the president of promising investors to act with caution on the land issue, while speaking a different language in the country.



NAIROBI– Weaknesses in the two countries’ value addition chains as well non-tariff barriers have emerged as the main hindrances in bilateral trade when business people from Kenya and South Africa held a joint summit in Nairobi Monday to seek investment opportunities in each other’s country.

The Trade and Investment mission, comprising representatives of 19 South African companies who met their Kenyan counterparts here Monday, will have a similar summit in Tanzania later this week. On the first day of the three-day Business Summit here, the Kenyan business people lamented the trade imbalance between the two regional economic powerhouses.

The latest data showed that exports from Kenya to South Africa at below three per cent of imports from South Africa. The total exports to South Africa dropped in 2017 to 26.78 million US dollars from 40.68 million USD in 2016, while Kenya’s imports from South Africa increased to 600 million USD in 2017 from 488 million USD in 2016, said Angela Ndambuki, the chief executive officer of the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI).

The meeting is being held with the aim of bridging that gap. The question that is before us is what are we doing differently and I think we are known as Africans, we are known we are good at implementation, very good, said South Africa’s Ambassador to Kenya, Koleka Mqulwana.

A lack of value addition was identified as one of the setbacks for Kenya’s low exports to South Africa. Kenyan businessmen also lamented non-tariff barriers like lengthy paperwork and bureaucracy, as some of the impediments to accessing the South African market.

I have made several trips to South Africa to the permit office in Pretoria trying to get an import licence for camel meat and milk but to this date we do not have any joy from that side, said Kenyan livestock trader Mohammed Abdi Mohammed.

Not one to give up, Mohammed has devised other ways of accessing the market. They go to Mauritius, they are slaughtered, they are packaged and then sent to South Africa.

Kenya is also hoping to tap into South Africa’s more developed manufacturing sector.



JOHANNESBURG– The government of South Africa’s Gauteng Province has decided to deploy unmanned aerial vehicles or drones to infrastructure sites to monitor delivery, safety compliance and identify blockages.

It is hoped that this will help minimize corruption and ensure that projects are delivered within the set time frames. Previously, it was found that some project managers would give wrong information that projects have been completed only to find that they were delayed with huge cost implications for the government.

Small drones about the size of a water bottle will now be deployed to infrastructure project sites to monitor service delivery. The drone will be able collect data by taking aerial photographs from up in the sky and the information will be stored in a memory card which will be downloaded later.

Gauteng Member of the Executive Council (MEC) for Infrastructure Development Jacob Mamabolo said here Monday: With the drone, it goes to site, it takes a photo, it tells us what officials have told us, what business intelligence have told us, prima vera. T

“hen the drone can confirm, validate and say whether the officials are telling the truth or whether they are not telling the truth. This is what the drone is doing for us.

Through using these drones, the department hopes it will be able to monitor service delivery at infrastructure sites, safety compliance and identify blockages immediately. It also hopes this will help minimise corruption and ensure that projects are delivered on time and within budget.

The Chief Director of Infrastructure Research in the Department, Amanda Moletsane, said this initiative would yield positive financial implications,.Drones saves us money. Drones are a more-cost effective option for collecting data onsite relative to the existing ways of collecting site information. For example, you would have project managers who need to drive out to more than 340 sites. Essentially if you do calculations in terms of mileage the project manager needs to travel, the fuel that you need to manage, the fleet that you need to manage to get them out there.

One drone costs the department 20,000 Rand (about 1,580 US dollars). The department is planning to have five of them. Head of Department Bethuel Netshiswinzhe says they intend to create jobs especially for the youth through this drone programme.

The department says during this financial year, 4.5 billion Rand had been budgeted for 340 projects.



PRETORIA– The Department of Health has placed more than 1,500 medical interns who have graudated from South African universities and 1,300 community service doctors for the 2018 and 2019 annual cycles.

The department said here Monday that all interns and community service doctors who studied at South African universities and were eligible for placement for the 2018 annual cycle had been allocated and offered places.

Those who became eligible between Jan 1 and April 2018 have been processed and their employment contracts are being finalised by provincial health departments with a service commencement date of June 1, 2018, the national department said.

The department assured that those South African students who studied at South African universities who are repeating blocks and medical interns who were not eligible by May 2018 will be allocated places during the mid-year cycle and start their employment from July 1, 2018.

South African-born citizens who studied medicine abroad and passed the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) Board Exams will be accommodated once a policy has been finalised on graduates with qualifications which are not prescribed by the HPCSA has been finalised.

Meanwhile, the department said it is also finalising a circular which will provide some clear guidelines and procedures to be followed when allocating the medical internships and community service, and related appointments for qualified permanent residents, refugees and all other non-South Africans.