||Another service delivery protest erupts in Mpumalanga
13 February 2010
Another service delivery protest has erupted in Mpumalanga, this time at
Dundonald near Badplass. The protest follows a week-long violent protest
in Siyathemba Township in Balfour.
About 400 people have embarked on protest action in the Dundonald area.
Community member Sipho Kunene says members of the community want the
Albert Luthuli Municipality in Carolina to provide them with basic needs
such as water, electricity, housing and roads.
Meanwhile, police say calm is slowly returning to the troubled
Siyathemba Township. Most roads in the township had been barricaded
following the week-long violent protests which led to the arrest of more
than 30 people. Police say for the first time since the violence erupted
last Sunday, taxis are operating and most roads have also been opened.
Police spokesperson Sam Tshabalala says, "The situation has gone back to
normal, there is movement now. One can see the taxis going up and down,
ferrying people to and from town. There are still those streets that are
barricaded but those are the minor streets on the outskirts. And we have
our men in blue monitoring the place."
Late last year, Co-operative Governance Minister Sicelo Shiceka said
service delivery protests must be completely eliminated by 2014. We must
respond to issues before people go to the streets. He wanted a
"responsive, efficient, effective and accountable" local government.
The indaba (meeting) followed the wave of service delivery protests
which occurred around the country, many of which turned violent.
Communities largely called for the removal of councillors due to a track
record of poor service delivery.
Mayor Wayile Intervenes to Help Destitute Community
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality 13 February 2010
www.MyPE.co.za: On Thursday 11 February Nelson Mandela Bay's Executive
Mayor, Zanoxolo Wayile, averted a potentially explosive situation by
decisively addressing the needs of protesters in Chatty, Nelson Mandela
Bay, so much so that the Mayor's interaction with the community ended in
Mayor Wayile was participating in a regular session with representatives
of National Treasury when he received a call from the Whippery who
reported that some 500 people were staging a service delivery protest in
Chatty. The Mayor immediately excused himself from the meeting and
rushed to the scene. "When I arrived, there was a barricade of burning
tyres and refuse," says Mayor Wayile. "Members of the SAPS were on the
scene, but people were visibly angry, and the situation could easily
have gotten out of hand."
"I took a walk over to the people, some of whom I recognised having been
with them in Veeplaas. We hugged each other."
Initially, the protesters had refused to move to the Booysens Park
community hall. "We chatted for a bit and we all agreed to move to the
hall so that we could constructively engage with their issues," says the
At the hall, Mayor Wayile chaired the meeting and the protesters
explained that they were frustrated over waiting for houses, alleged
corruption in the allocation of houses, the lack of a school in the
area, and some complained about poor workmanship of the houses they had
received. In addition, they alleged that they received "no joy from
their Ward Councillor (Trevor Louw)". Mayor Wayile says: "The
allegations being made by the people are serious - they therefore
require serious action," before promising: "I will thus be addressing
all of these issues with haste and decisive action."
In concluding the meeting, a prayer was said, before Mayor Wayile led
the congregation in song.
The Mayor was accompanied by the Portfolio Chairperson for Human
Settlements Andile Mfunda, Sport & Recreation Chair Maria Hermaans, ANC
Regional Secretary Zandisile Qupe, and Councillors Charmaine Williams,
TB Mafana and Mbongeni Bungane.
In an interview afterwards, Mayor Wayile elaborated on the actions he
would be taking:
1. Establishing an Investigation Team
"Early next week I will establish an Investigation Team, who will
promptly investigate all allegations of corruption in the Housing
Waiting List for that area, along with the allegations of poor
workmanship," says Mayor Wayile. Asked as to whether the same team will
investigate such issues on a city-wide basis, Mayor Wayile was quick to
point out that he wanted to keep the terms of reference of the team as
focussed as possible: "We cannot have long drawn out investigations
covering wide areas. Our people want answers, and they want them now."
"So, the Investigation Team will be focussed on the Chatty housing
project and will be given strict timeframes within which to carry out
their task." Mayor Wayile also confirmed that the Team will include
"independent persons from outside the institution".
2. Ensuring that schools are built in the area
"I have engaged with the Department of Education on this matter," says
Mayor Wayile. "And I am happy to report that the feedback from them has
been positive in this regard."
The DoE has confirmed that the plan is to build both a Primary and a
High School in the area. "However, this is the long-term plan, and
people are impatient."
"So, as confirmed by the Department of Education, construction of prefab
classrooms will begin this month."
"At least in this way, the children of this area will receive their
basic right to an education," says the Mayor.
"Also, we must ensure that a feeding scheme for the children is
implemented, and I will be engaging with the relevant stakeholders in
3. Economic development
"I received an inspiring proposal from a member of the Chatty community
for a food production scheme," says Mayor Wayile. "It impresses upon me
and my colleagues that the people sorely need economic development in
the area, so that sustainable jobs can be created where they live."
"To this end, I am requesting our Economic Development directorate to
explore ways in which this can be done."
4. Ward Councillor support
"Given the strong feelings that the community has about their Ward
Councillor - which were vociferously expressed at the meeting - I have
asked Councillor Veliswa Ndidi to provide political support and
consistently engage with the community on behalf of Council."
"I have chosen Councillor Ndidi because she is conversant in both
Afrikaans and isiXhosa, which are spoken in the area."
"Councillor Ndidi will regularly report back directly to me."
5. Engagement with the community
"Next week I will be revisiting the area," says Mayor Wayile. "It is
important that we stay in touch with the people and provide them with
feedback and progress reports on all the issues they have raised."
Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Contacts.
Police harassment: Back to the future?
Frans Cronje SAIRR 12 February 2010
Frans Cronje on the brutish approach taken to the leaders of the Balfour
Media reports suggest that the police have beaten and tortured a number
of people while hunting for ‘community leaders' in Balfour in
Mpumalanga. This may be an early indication of how the ANC plans to deal
with grass roots threats to its political hegemony in South Africa.
Earlier this week Balfour in Mpumalanga saw a popular uprising by
residents of that community who protested against high levels of
unemployment and general failures of service delivery. Balfour is an
important case because President Zuma personally visited the area in
2009 following a similar uprising and promised to address the demands of
residents. That a second round of protest action has now erupted
suggests that the community has lost confidence even in Mr Zuma.
The current Balfour protests followed the same pattern as the many other
mini-uprisings that occur across a number of South Africa's townships
every year. Residents get fed up with their local council and take to
the streets to burn tyres and erect obstacles. Regrettably in many of
these protests local businesses and government offices are ransacked and
often burned down. Foreign African immigrants are attacked and hounded
out of the affected areas. The response by the State is to deliver all
manner of platitudes to the community while sending in the police with
shotguns to restore order. The State is often quick to blame the
protests on criminal elements or 'agitators' exploiting the community.
Having lost faith in their elected, or deployed, leaders the community
turn to ‘community leaders' who speak for them and articulate their
concerns to the media. In the case of Balfour one particular young man
spoke to the media on a number of occasions - he was articulate and
appeared to speak with a degree of community backing. He was not a
formal politician in the sense of representing a party or being a town
councilor nor did he come from within the ranks of the ANC.
It is around this young man and others like him that the current Balfour
protests give us particular cause for concern. Media reports since
yesterday evening indicate that the police have been searching for
‘community leaders' said to be behind the protest action. The police
have allegedly beaten the family members of these young men and women
and ransacked their houses. The father of one of these leaders reports a
police officer beating him with a rifle butt while questioning him about
the whereabouts of his son.
The local ‘community leadership' is now reportedly in hiding.
There is unfortunately some precedent for this type of behavior by the
police after 1994. In a well documented case in 2004 members of the
Landless People's Movement, a small South African activist organisation,
reported being detained and tortured by the police following a protest
action arranged by that organisation. The torture involved beatings and
If the most recent allegations in Balfour are true then we should all be
very concerned. For what we are seeing is that where black communities
challenge the political hegemony of the ANC and establish a ‘community
leadership' structure outside of that party, the State is prepared to
use the security forces to force the local community into giving up the
‘community leadership'. Doubtless where those leaders have instigated
public violence and the like they should be arrested but not via torture
The level of popular protest against the ANC in black communities is a
great embarrassment to the party and the Government. To their great
relief this dissatisfaction has not yet translated into a significant
loss of electoral support for the party although it eventually must. It
must also have dawned on the ANC that the threat to their political
hegemony in South Africa does not come so much from Mrs Zille in Cape
Town as from the sense of disillusionment growing in poor and black
communities. The specific risk being that a grass roots protest movement
pulls the political rug out from under current leadership of the ANC. If
these assumptions are correct then it is difficult to escape the
conclusion that what concerns the State in Balfour is not so much the
violence and disorder in the community, but rather that the community is
establishing a leadership structure outside of the hegemony of the ANC.
Today it is twenty years to the day since Mr Mandela walked out of
prison. We are left to reflect whether any of his party's supporters
thought that they would again see the day when the police broke down
their doors in the middle of the night and with threats of violence
demanded to know the whereabouts of the ‘community leaders'.
Frans Cronje is deputy CEO of the South African Institute of Race
Relations. This article first appeared in the Institute's online
newsletter, SAIRR Today.
Cops on alert in Brackenhurst
Mandy Wiener (Eyewitness News) 12 February 2010
The situation was calm in Brackenhurst, on the East Rand, where
protesters blockaded roads and burnt tyres overnight, said police on
Residents placed rocks and tires on the road between Thokoza and
Brackenhurst as they protested about service delivery in the area.
The police’s Happy Nape said they were monitoring the situation for any
Rubber bullets fired at protesting residents
Mthetho Ndoni and Dineo Matomela (HERALD REPORTERS) 12 February 2010
POLICE yesterday fired rubber bullets to disperse about 400 Port
Elizabeth residents who blocked a main road in a protest about lack of
Trouble erupted when angry Chatty Extension residents blocked Mission
Road in the area of the Booysen Park Community Hall with burning tyres.
This was after police declared their gathering illegal and ordered them
to go inside the hall.
Calm was restored later when Nelson Mandela Bay Mayor Zanoxolo Wayile
addressed the residents and vowed to take tough action against municipal
managers not doing their jobs.
The residents were relocated from flood-plain areas including
Soweto-on-Sea and Veeplaas after floods in 2006. They have still not
received services like schools, clinics and a police station.
Police spokesman Captain Johan Rheeder said police fired rubber bullets
at the protesters after they refused to enter the hall and demanded to
“A mayoral committee delegation was sent to address the crowd but they
were unhappy and threw stones at the police, and the police members were
forced to use rubber bullets.”
One person was injured and taken by ambulance to Livingstone Hospital.
After Wayile addressed the residents, they dispersed peacefully and the
situation returned to normal, Rheeder said.
When The Herald team arrived at the scene, two men who had been hit by
rubber bullets were seated on the grass while some protesters gathered
around them. Inside the community hall, residents waved placards with
slogans like “We want houses, not moves from shack to shack”.
Tempers flared as residents aired their grievances to Wayile and members
of his executive committee. Some complained of being moved from their
shacks to other shacks, while those who had low-cost homes said
workmanship was shoddy.
One of the residents, Liziwe Wayile, said : “The houses are pretty
outside, but inside they are falling apart.”
Zukiswa Tungu, of Phola Park, said: “We cannot flush our toilets because
the plumbing is incomplete.”
Wayile conceded that certain municipal managers had been responsible for
poor service delivery in the area and said they would face action.
“Some of the issues long overdue in this area are as a result of
managers who are not doing their jobs. A special task force has been
established to deal with complaints and those who are found responsible
will face the music,” he said.
Wayile said this was the first time he had interacted with the area’s
residents. “I will interact with the mayoral committee to find a way
that we can address these challenges.”
Community leader Phakamile Mamana said schools were too far away for
children to attend, and residents had demanded temporary schools in the
area. “We took action after our letters to both the Eastern Cape
government and the municipal mayor, appealing for their urgent
intervention, failed to yield results.
“We lack clinics, schools and a police station and houses are
unfinished, and the community is tired of being ignored by the
Ward councillor Trevor Louw said he was out of town on a DA function but
that he was aware of the chaos in Booysen Park.
“I don’t blame the residents for showing their anger because they have
been living in the area for five years but nothing structural has been
done to develop the area. We’ve tried everything to get services into
the area but the only response I get from the council is promises.”
Protest about illnesses ends peacefully
A protest by ex-employees of the South African Nuclear Energy
Corporation (Necsa) who claim to suffer from illnesses caused during
their employment at the corporation, ended peacefully on Thursday when
it was agreed that they would first study Necsa’s response to their
demands before taking any further action.
The action by ex-employees to get compensation for the illnesses they
suffer as well as compensation for the families of ex-employees who have
already passed away started in 2004 as a campaign supported by Earthlife
The ex-employees gathered outside gate 3 at Necsa on Thursday morning,
demanding answers to a memorandum handed over to the corporation during
a protest on 24 January 2007, claiming that the corporation never
responded to the demands set out in the memorandum.
Salome Moela (Setsiba), who was employed by the erstwhile Atomic Energy
Board, told Kormorant that she was involved in an accident at Pelindaba
in 1987 when she was pinned to a wall by a truck when she walked from
one building to the next. She says that since the accident she has been
unable to work but has received no compensation or pension from Necsa.
Another woman, Rosina Raselabe’s husband worked at Necsa in 1998 when he
was rendered unconscious and injured in an explosion at the site. She
said that her husband was taken to Unitas Hospital where he regained
consciousness after four days. Raselabe’s husband has since died and she
claims that she does not receive any pension from Necsa - money that she
needs to take care of her children.
The group claimed that since the campaign started more than half of the
ex-employees have died without any compensation forthcoming.
The memorandum from 2007 which was handed over to the Chief Executive
Officer (CEO) of Necsa, Dr. Rob Adam, includes demands to have access to
medical treatment, access to their medical files and compensation for
the ill as well as compensation for the families of the deceased. In
accepting the memorandum from Mr. Alfred Sepepe, Dr. Adam said that the
corporation responded to the memorandum on 25 January 2007.
He said it seemed that the response did not reach the ex-employees and
it was agreed that the leaders of the ex-employees first study the
response. Dr. Adam then invited the group to return to the corporation
if they had any further concerns.
The response from Necsa to the memorandum included that Necsa opened its
medical facilities to the ex-employees for examination so that medical
tests can be done to ascertain whether their illnesses are due to their
employment at the corporation. It also refers to the finding of an
independent investigation into the claims and the fact that the findings
were forwarded to the Compensation Commissioner.
The group undertook to study the content of the response.
Tired of ‘tuck shop’ municipality
Kormorant 11 February 2010
“The municipality is being run like a tuck shop and we will no longer
tolerate it.” Residents of the Refentse Low Cost Housing Project and the
informal settlements in Ward 30 of the municipality this week demanded
answers from the Executive Mayor of the Madibeng Local Municipality and
said that a failure to do so will lead to them to dumping the
overflowing portable toilets on her doorstep.
Community leaders who are also on the managing committee of the ANC
Youth League (ANCYL) in Hartbeespoort, Aubrey Boligwathine, Steyn
Mphatludi, Martin Serero and Victor Mathedimos spoke frankly to
Kormorant about the endless years the community has been waiting for
houses, the improvement of living conditions in the informal settlements
and effective service delivery.
They said that they cannot wait any longer and that the lack of response
from the municipality to their concerns raised in letters and in the
media is unacceptable.
All the houses at the Refentse Low Cost Housing Project are occupied
which means that approximately 500 people live in the 137 houses. Martin
Serero, one of the community leaders, said that they had occupied the
houses in October last year and that they had used the beneficiary list,
compiled in 2000, to decide who could move in. He said that they also
had the list checked by the municipality to ensure that the houses were
going to the right people. Serero said that there are people from the
Popo Molefe informal settlement, the Ten Rooms informal settlement and
the Marius informal settlement living at Refentse at the moment.
Some of the houses were not completed when the residents moved into the
houses and they finished it themselves, building the windows shut with
bricks or covering them with placards and finishing the roofs with
corrugated iron. The community leaders expressed their concern about the
lack of lights at Refentse and said that at night they cannot see, which
makes it so much easier for criminals. No electrical, sanitation or
water infrastructure has yet been installed at the project.
According to the community leaders the municipality provided only enough
water for 10 families at Refentse and only four mobile toilets are
available for all 500 people. The water provision stopped completely at
the end of December which means that there is no water available.
At the other informal settlement mobile toilets were delivered on 7
January this year but have not been emptied since. Rubbish skips, which
the communities have asked for on more than one occasion over the past
two years, have not been delivered. The leaders said that between the
rubbish and the overflowing toilets some of the residents of the
informal settlements have become ill, suffering from diarrhea and other
“We are tired of the situation. The last time we raised our concerns
nothing was done. At the informal settlements and Refentse and ward 30
as a whole there is no service delivery. We do not want an answer from
the spokesperson for the municipality, we want a response from the mayor
herself,” Steyn Mphatlusi said.
The group of leaders reiterated that the community of Hartbeespoort have
been waiting for the houses at Refentse since 2003 and that they will
not move out of the houses voluntarily. They said that all other areas
in Madibeng have completed housing projects except Hartbeespoort.
Neither the spokesperson nor the Executive Mayor of Madibeng responded
Brits residents declare dispute
Residents of Brits who attended a protest meeting on Monday night have
decided to declare a dispute with the Madibeng municipality. The
meeting, attended by about 800 ratepayers, was addressed by Ms Carien
Visser of Sannieshof and Mr Jaap Kelder, chairman of the National
Taxpayers Union (NTPU). The meeting decided to form a Concerned
Ratepayers’ Association (CORPA) to administer the dispute.
In a letter to President Zuma this morning, Mr Jaco Dercksen, who
chaired the meeting, said that officials of the Madibeng municipality
were invited but did not attend the meeting. He stressed that the
meeting had no political objectives but has decided to proceed with a
dispute as residents could no longer tolerate the poor service delivery.
In his address Mr Kelder explained that paying rates and taxes to a
ratepayers’ association who in turn pays it over to the municipality
once the required services have been rendered, was legal in terms of
It was explained at the meeting that each individual ratepayer will have
to declare a dispute with the municipality and that the necessary
dispute forms would be supplied.
In his reaction the leader of the Democratic Alliance in Madibeng, Clr
Leon Basson, who attended the meeting, pointed out that Madibeng sends
out 47 000 accounts per month. He fears that individual ratepayers could
still be vulnerable to victimisation even if all the people who attended
Monday night’s meeting declare disputes. And the diversion of the rates
to a ratepayers’ association doesn’t make sense if the money is going to
be paid over to the municipality in any case - only a little later. It
is also debatable on what grounds a dispute could be declared. Contact
Mr. Jaco Dercksen on 074 505 4775.
Residents of Lawley go on a service delivery protest
Lwandi Genu (ClassicFM) 12 February 2010
Residents of Lawley, near Lenasia are taking to the streets to to demand
basic services. The leader of the march Mxolisi Mavuso says the
residents are demanding services such clean water and electricity.
Mavuso says they are marching to the regional office to hand over a
Unemployed picket hours before Zuma speech
SAPA (Business Day) 11 February 2010
Kota accused the police of using “excessive power” and ”repressing the
voice of the people”.
A picket by a group of unemployed people outside Parliament resulted in
the arrest of two protesters on Thursday, hours before President Jacob
Zuma was to deliver his state of the nation address.
The handful of Unemployed People’s Movement (UPM) members took up
position on the pavement in Plein Street opposite Parliament around 11am.
For about an hour, they displayed a large banner and used a megaphone,
singing and chanting to demand jobs.
Police spokesman Captain Ezra October said the picket had been illegal
and the group was asked to disperse and switch off the megaphone.
While the picketers complied with the request to disperse, they had not
switched off the megaphone and continued to chant as they walked away
from the scene. Subsequently, two of the group were arrested for failing
to comply with the police instructions, October said.
According to UPM convenor Ayanda Kota, his group had left Plein Street,
but in the vicinity of the Grand Parade police attempted to confiscate
the banner and megaphone.
Kota and a fellow UPM member Vuyisile Masenuke were arrested and each
slapped with a R150 admission of guilt fine.
He vowed not to pay the fine and said the UPM would now launch a protest
campaign against the 2010 Fifa World Cup.
Workers on strike at Rustenburg mine
SABC 12 February 2010
Over a thousand workers at the Rasimone Phokeng Platinum mine outside
Rustenburg have stopped working and embarked on protest action.
They allege that the mine management is racist and discriminatory
towards women. The workers say they will continue with their protest
action and ensure that the mine is brought to a stand still, until
management addresses their demands.
National union of Mineworkers representative at the mine, Geofrey
Moreke, says what they have noticed at the mine is that management tends
to overlook women, when it came to remuneration and development programs
that are introduced, this despite them having more experience than their
A memorandum of demand was handed to the mine management. Workers say
they regret that their protest action coincided with the festivities of
commemorating the release of Nelson Mandela.
GRAHAMSTOWN UNEMPLOYED PEOPLE'S MOVEMENT PROTEST
Press statement for immediate release
Grahamstown Unemployed People's Movement (UPM) 10 February 2010
The Grahamstown Unemployed People's Movement (UPM) is to hold a
demonstration in Cape Town to coincide with President Jacob Zuma's
opening of Parliament tomorrow evening. The purpose of the demonstration
is to highlight the plight of the unemployed in the town, and to protest
against the fact that Zuma has not delivered on his promise of 500 000
jobs within six months of taking office. His failure to do so has been
confirmed by Statistics South Africa (SSA). In fact, SSA has showed that
in the fourth quarter of 2009, jobs were lost.
The unemployment situation in Grahamstown has reached crisis levels, and
is hovering at around 70 percent. The most affected are young people,
Unemployment in Grahamstown has increased in the past few years. Several
industries that provided employment have closed down. These include the
railway industry: the line between Grahamstown and Alicedale, which used
to be the core railway junction in South Africa before the mid-1990's,
was closed down. A kaolin (white clay used in the manufacture of
ceramics, medicine, coated paper, in toothpaste, light bulbs, cosmetics
and porcelain) processing factory was also closed down. The Municipality
now exports kaolin, in the process making jobs outside Grahamstown. A
poultry firm has also been closed down. The Makana Municipality is not
creating any labour absorbing activities to absorb the unemployment
created by the closure of these industries.
The services sector in Grahamstown, such as Rhodes University and the
Grahamstown Arts Festival, has not created enough jobs to compensate.
Jobs that are created usually require specific skills or are temporary
or casual in nature. This sector has not done enough to address the
plight of the unemployed.
The scale of human suffering this problem is causing must not be
underestimated. The rate of crime has increased, especially in the
township. The liquor and drugs industries are the fastest growing
industries. There have been a number of suicide cases, and some
unemployed people have died due to stress. Families are breaking down,
and women and children are being abused.
We call on Zuma to:
Implement the promises he made when he was voted into office.
Ensure that the Makana Municipality implements a labour absorbing
expanded public works programme, and provides resources for the
development of co-operatives to exploit Grahamstown's rich natural
resources for the benefit of its people.
Focus more on matters of state, rather than having more affairs
Lastly, the UPM calls on all unemployed people to unite to form a
national movement of the unemployed to struggle for full employment in
South Africa. The UPM also calls on the state to nationalise key
industries to create more employment, as we do not trust the private
sector to resolve the employment crisis, as the private sector has been
very much part of the problem. Furthermore, the services industries in
Grahamstown, such as the university and the National Arts Festival must
be required to create employment in return for the massive cash
injections they get from the government.
Contact: Ayanda Kota (convenor): 078 625 6462
Mahomed Moorad: 071 922 1227
UPDATES ON SITUATIONS IN ITIRELENG (TSHWANE) AND SIYATHEMBA (BALFOUR,
ANTI-PRIVATISATION FORUM Public Statement 10 February 2010
Since the eviction on 11/12th January of approximately 1,000 families in
portion 15 and portion 25 of Itireleng informal settlement, the
situation on the ground remains tense but there has been some progress
due mainly to the tenacity of the residents and the consistent work of
APF activists in the Tshwane region. Even though many of the evicted
residents of portion 15 have been camping out in communal, make-shift
shelters with their few remaining belongings, APF activists have played
a vital role in ensuring that NGOs such as the South African Red Cross
provide relief to people. Further, the APF has been instrumental in
securing the services of Lawyers for Human Rights to act for the
residents of portion 25 who were evicted without a court order. LHR is
currently investigating who carried out the eviction of portion 25 and
preparing an application to the High Court that will restore people to
their plots and enable them to rebuild their shacks. In the meantime,
many of the portion 25 evictees have moved back onto the land and
erected shacks. Unfortunately, a few so-called ‘community leaders’
continue to try and take advantage of desperate residents by
fraudulently selling ‘stands’, while some members of the ANC continue to
try and ride on the back of the residents plight to score cheap
political points and divide the community. The APF is in the process of
helping to mobilise the residents for a march to the Tshwane
Municipality to present their memorandum on issues of the evictions and
For further comment/info contact APF Tshwane organiser Mashao Chauke on
Since police forcibly prevented residents of Siyathemba (grouped under
the Dipaleseng Residents Committee – DRC) from marching to the nearby
Burnstone mine on Monday morning, the community has been in a state of
low-intensity war with the police. With the assistance of APF
organisers, the DRC had mobilised the community to confront the mine
around broken agreements and promises related to training, employment
and local development. However, once the police opened fire with stun
grenades and rubber bullets (there was a report from our organisers of
the use of live ammunition) to prevent the march from proceeding, all
hell broke loose. Since then, there have been running battles between
groups of residents and police. Very unfortunately, some residents whom
the DRC has identified as criminals taking advantage of the situation,
have attacked some foreign owned small businesses in the area and have
also destroyed some public infrastructure serving the community. The APF
condemns in the strongest terms this xenophobic and reactionary
behaviour. Alongside the DRC, the APF holds the government – at all
levels – directly responsible for the past and current situation in
Siyathemba. The APF stands fully behind the legitimate structures and
demands of the DRC as they continue to struggle for meaningful democracy
and socio-economic development.
For further comment/info contact DRC spokesperson Zakhele Maya on 083
Siyathemba community leader to sue police
Cathy Mohlahlana 10 February 2010
The father of a Siyathemba community leader said on Wednesday he was
taking legal action against police officers who allegedly assaulted him.
Fifty six-year-old David Maya said officials stormed his house looking
for his son, Zakhele on Tuesday night.
The township has been rocked by violent service delivery protests this week.
Maya, who had stitches to his face, said officers pistol-whipped him.
“I felt so much pain. It’s not safe, the police just come and attack you
in your home.”
He added officers must explain why they attacked him.
“I’m going to sue them. If I was guilty I wouldn’t have a problem but
now I want them to explain why they assaulted me.”
Police did this to me: Balfour leaders fear for their lives
Nkosana Lekotjolo 10 February 2010
David Mafengeni, the father of a community leader involved in
service-delivery protests in Siyathemba township in Balfour, Mpumulanga,
lay battered and bloodied in his home.
Mafengeni told The Times he thought he was going to die when police
allegedly repeatedly hit him in the face with the butt of a gun.
Mafengeni said the police told him they were searching for his son,
Zakhele Maya, one of the community leaders who organised the protests.
At least 32 people were arrested following the violent service-delivery
protests in which a municipal building and a library were burnt down.
Maya and other community leaders - who organised protests demanding
jobs, electricity and water - were in hiding yesterday, apparently in
fear for their lives.
Mafengeni, 56, is one of several residents who claim they were attacked
by police officers.
When The Times visited Ma-fengeni's home , his swollen face was bandaged
and he was wearing a bloodied shirt.
Mafaengi said: "I was asleep at about midnight when I was woken by
people banging the windows of my house. I begged them to stop banging on
the windows and asked them to come through the front door. When I opened
the door two police officers in uniform pointed a firearm at my forehead
and started to hit me repeatedly with a gun, before I could say
anything. I was so scared."
Provincial police spokesman Sibongile Nkosi said: "They are free to
report the alleged incident, but we are condemning these acts of
lawlessness in Balfour . the burning of property, the damaging of
property and the pelting of police with stones.
"We will take strong action against those [protesters] by arresting
them. Those are acts of criminality. We are there to maintain law and
order in that area," Nkosi added.
Mandla Maya, Zakhele's elder brother, said the police also visited his
house and attacked him.
"One of the three police officers said I was a suspect. Then he began
kicking and punching me all over my body," he said.
Another resident, Thapelo Moloi, showed The Times what he said were five
rubber bullet wounds. He said police had shot him at close range.
"They accused me of being one of the people organising the protest and
said I had also stolen public property," Moloi said.
Police patrolled the township streets, dispersing crowds by firing
The streets remained barricaded with burnt tyres, rocks, old furniture
and scrap metal.
Whole township is on fire: Anarchy in Siyathemba rages on - library torched
Sipho Masondo 9 February 2010
Angry youths burned down the library in Siyathemba township in Balfour,
in the second day of violence in the area.
Books and computers went up in smoke, and ash was all that remained
after firefighters were unable to stop the blaze.
Late yesterday afternoon, two police officers barely escaped with their
life when locals ambushed them and pelted them with stones and other
To protect himself, one of the officers sprayed rubber bullets at the
crowd. When that failed, he hauled out his pistol, cocked it and waved
it at the crowd while fleeing.
At the same time he had his cellphone to his ear and was frantically
calling for back-up.
The Times saw another police officer emerging from a house in
Siyathemba, running from a group of youths hot on his heels, throwing
stones at him.
Siyathemba residents demanded that Balfour mayor Lefty Tsotsetsi and the
entire Dipaleseng municipality council quit.
They also demanded that President Jacob Zuma return to deal with poor
service delivery, that the township be incorporated into Gauteng and
that they be given jobs at a nearby mine. Residents came out in droves,
destroyed street lights and chanted struggle songs.
Police stood ready with pump-action shotguns and watched as residents
toyi-toyied, brandishing placards and knobkerries.
Youth leader Sifiso Makhubu said: "The whole township is on fire and we
can't keep on like this. We can't have a leadership that is an obstacle
to the development of this township.
"We were promised six months ago and nothing has been done - once bitten
twice shy. We are not backing off until there is something in black and
white on what will happen with our demands."
Police spokesman Abe Khoabane said the 22 people arrested on Monday will
appear in the Balfour Magistrate's Court today on public violence charges.
"We are going to contain the situation," Khoabane said. "You can't say
there was no violence when two buildings were burned down." A municipal
building was torched on Monday.
Khoabane said the police were investigating the looting of foreign-owned
Schooling was disrupted for the second day. Matrics vented their anger
at losing another school day in a province in which the matric results
last year were the worst in the country.
* Mpumalanga's MEC for Co-operative Governance and Traditional
Affairs Norman Mokoena last night rejected the requests by the residents
to have the mayor and the council dismissed.
Mokoena, who spoke to journalists after he and other officials met
Siyathemba residents, also condemned the torching of the library, saying
the provincial government has spent R200000 to upgrade it.
On the community's demand for Balfour's incorporation into Gauteng,
Mokoena said this was a long process that would not happen overnight.
He also said that Cabinet had taken a decision to build a university in
Children spearhead violent protest
Beauregard Tromp (The Star) 9 February 2010
Children set municipal offices alight, destroyed foreign-owned shops and
tore down infrastructure as Siyathemba township in Balfour, Mpumalanga,
was left burning - again.
But community leaders were quick to denounce criminal elements who they
say hijacked a community protest yesterday to go on a robbing and
After a massive police effort, involving nearly 50 heavily armed
policemen, 16 people were arrested and charged with public violence.
Early yesterday morning, residents led by the Dipaleseng Residents
Committee (DRC) began protesting against the perceived lack of community
investment in the township by the Burnstone Gold Mine.
'The police came to help us to run away'
Things got out of hand when shops owned by Ethiopians, Pakistanis and
Indians were attacked by protesters, who chased them out of the township
and ransacked their stores.
"I was sleeping in my shop with my family when they came. The police
came to help us to run away," said Tasfaye Makuria, who escaped with his
wife and toddler.
They are now renting a room across from the Balfour police station in
the centre of town.
At the station, residents were laying charges against the Ethiopians,
who they accuse of assault. The Ethiopians smiled cynically at this,
saying they had tried to protect themselves by hurling rocks back at the
mobs that came for them.
And this isn't the first time that relations between locals and
foreign-national shopowners have been tense. Ethiopian community leader
Workneh Hansawo said that last year, the Ethiopian shopkeepers were
persuaded to drop charges against those who destroyed their shops,
convinced that relations had been restored and that it was safe for them
to return to Siyathemba.
The leaders say the damage could have been worse had they not pre-empted
the criminal element
The shopkeepers had borrowed stock and money from relatives to buy
fridges and pay rent to start again last year.
"We have nowhere to go. The rent will be too expensive. We have to work,
otherwise we do bad things," said Hansawo.
He said community leaders had gone to foreign-owned shops to solicit
"donations" for the planned protest, which they believed was to ensure
The leaders say the damage could have been worse had they not pre-empted
the criminal element and warned shopkeepers to keep their stocks low and
their cars out of the township.
When the leaders tried to intervene during the shop attacks, they were
chased away by the mobs, said DRC member Zakhele Maya.
Most of the violence was spearheaded by children, who kept tyres burning
at barricades, loading tar poles onto the fires and tearing down the
little that remained at general dealers.
The few adults among them promised "action tonight".
During one battle with the police, the singing and burning was
momentarily interrupted by policemen in a bakkie, who observed the group
from a short distance away.
Sensing the police's vulnerability, a few started throwing stones,
followed by others armed with catapults. The four policemen retreated,
leading to loud cheering at this "victory".
Emboldened, the mob moved up the hill and started stoning the local
municipal offices, tearing down the entrance gate before breaking down
the door, stealing the mops, pitchfork, radio and heater inside.
A youth produced a canister filled with paraffin, with at least six
others offering a match. With too little paraffin, the fire fizzled out
after a few minutes.
Next door, though, only the burnt-out hulk of another office remained.
In the late afternoon, a cavalcade of heavily armed policemen drove into
the township, walking in groups of four down every street, often with
groups of youths taunting them.
Police were bracing themselves for further violence as the DRC were set
to meet again last night.
A statement from the Drc claimed the mine had reneged on an agreement to
employ half its workforce from local residents.
Dawie Mostert, Burnstone's vice-president for human capital, said they
had employed 50 percent local workers, including contractors, and had
spent R3,2 million on skills development and learnerships. In addition,
they had paid for infrastructure upgrades in Balfour and provided skills
to the local municipality.
"I don't know what people would like to achieve. One company cannot be
the answer for all things in a community where up to 50 percent of
people are unemployed," said Mostert.
Meanwhile, the planned protest march to the Burnstone mine, a few
kilometres from Siyathemba, was stopped by police.
This article was originally published on page 1 of The Star on
February 09, 2010
Phosa fuming over protest allegations
Sapa 10 February 2010
ANC treasurer general Mathews Phosa is claiming R1-million damages and
insisting on a public apology after a fellow party member accused him of
"funding and fuelling" service delivery protests in Mpumalanga.
"It's not about the money, Mr Makamo can't when on radio say what he
wants to especially when it's not true... and the person is of Mr
Phosa's stature," said Phosa's attorney from BDK Attorneys, Ian Small
Smith, on Wednesday.
The allegations were made by Raymond Makamo, the Mpumalanga secretary of
the SA National Civics Organisation - an ANC ally - in an interview with
the Ligwalagwala radio station on Monday and Tuesday. Makamo is also a
member of the ANC.
Smith said a letter of demand was sent to Makamo, claiming the money and
a public apology from him. Makamo has seven days to comply.
Should he fail to do so, Smith said court proceedings would be
instituted against him.
Phosa declined to comment on Wednesday.
"I don't want to talk because we might give evidence in court," he said.
The allegations have infuriated the ANC, with its spokesman Jackson
Mthembu condemning them as "spurious".
"We are even more shocked and infuriated by allegations from the same
person to the effect that an NEC [national executive committee] member
again in the name of our treasurer general has paid journalists,
particularly Mzilikazi Wa Africa, to write negative stories about
Mpumalanga province and the ANC premier there, Cde DD [David] Mabuza,"
he said in a statement.
"These allegations by Makamo are without any basis and in our view are
meant to tarnish the good name and image of our treasurer general."
Mthembu said if Makamo believed in the allegations, he should have
approached the ANC on the matter.
His failure to substantiate the allegations and his failure to alert
party leadership were "an attempt to bring the ANC and its leadership
"The ANC will then deal with this matter in a manner consistent with its
Service delivery protests have flared sporadically in the province,
intensifying last year. The latest, in the Siyathemba township over
recent days, turned violent with a library burnt down and police firing
rubber bullets to disperse crowds. - Sapa
National Union of Mineworkers: “Employ 100% locals”
The NUM is highly perturbed by the notion adopted by Balfour and other
mining communities’ in calling on the local mine to employ locals only.
South Africa is a single united country in which all people enjoy
freedom of movement and the right to work any where. “The idea of saying
residents of Balfour should be the only ones employed in the area is
problematic for many reasons. What if it become a national issue and
people of Carletonville, Johannesburg, Pretoria and other areas say the
same?” says Frans Baleni, the NUM General Secretary.
NUMSA CONDEMNS VIOLENT PROTESTS AND XENOPHOBIC ATTACKS
Numsa 9 February 2010
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) condemns the
violent protests and xenophobic attacks directed towards foreign
nationals in Siyathemba, Balfour, Mpumalanga province because they
negate the legitimate and genuine service delivery and economic
opportunities demands raised by the community. We view these protests
within the context of the ‘welfarist’, top-down bureaucratic ‘delivery’
interventions fostered and entrenched by the 1996 class project.
We call on the working class formations particularly the ANC-led
Alliance to unite the community around a strategic programme that
raises broader challenges – and not just demanding more ‘delivery’ into
the same over-crowded, under-resourced and reproduced apartheid slums
and townships. Our Revolutionary Alliance must actively champion a
revolutionary agenda which seeks to transfer the wealth of our country
to the people as a whole informed by the Freedom Charter as part of
resolving these challenges of underdevelopment and economic
opportunities for our people.
The inability by the Revolutionary Alliance to seize this moment will
open up a lacuna for local political entrepreneurs and ‘tenderpreneurs’
who are opportunistically and demagogically using popular frustrations
to wage their own self-centered battles to access local tenders and
power. We reiterate our call for the convening of a service delivery
summit geared towards responding to the challenges and bottlenecks at
National Spokesperson – 073 299 1595
Uitenhage workers in protest over short-time scheme
Mthetho Ndoni HERALD REPORTER 10 February 2010
ABOUT 80 disgruntled Cape of Good Hope Woolcombers workers staged a
lunchtime protest in Uitenhage yesterday, demanding to be placed on the
government’s new training layoff scheme.
The protesting workers belong to the SA Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union.
The workers, who process and prepare wool, have been on short-time for
several months and want to make use of the government’s newly introduced
training layoff scheme.
Union regional secretary Lawrence Xola said the employer had been using
“delaying tactics to avoid placing its workers on the training layoff
“Should the company agree to participate in this scheme, workers would
receive training on the days they are on short-time.
“In terms of the scheme, the training would be paid for by the industry
Sector Education and Training Authority, while funding (from) government
would be used to pay the wage component.”
Xola said the company’s reluctance to participate in the scheme meant
the workers could not access the money set aside for this purpose. “We
call upon the management to agree to the introduction of the scheme at
the company with immediate effect.”
The training layoff scheme was introduced as a government intervention
to deal with the economic crisis that saw South Africa lose almost a
million jobs in the first nine months of last year.
Cape of Good Hope Woolcombers managing director Riaan van Rensburg said
the company management had been trying to get hold of the union’s leader
to discuss the matter.
“It would be inappropriate to comment to the media on the negotiations
while they are still under way,” he said.
Reservists’ protest turns violent
Daily Dispatch 10 February 2010
A PROTEST by disgruntled police reservists briefly turned violent in
Johannesburg yesterday when police fired rubber bullets.
The reservists failed to obey an instruction to disperse, Johannesburg
metro police spokesperson Inspector Edna Mamonyane said.
Some of them were arrested for participating in an illegal march.
“As the metro police, we did not issue a permit for the march. The march
Independent Online reported that ANC MP Winnie Madikizela-Mandela had to
defuse the tension between protesters and police officers.
Reservists from around the country gathered at the Library Gardens in
the CBD in the morning.
“We want unconditional integration into the police,” said Free State
spokesperson Dumisani Mvula.
They took to the streets to highlight their frustrations. “People see us
in uniform and think all is well, while our lives are being frustrated
by promise after promise that we will be integrated, and nothing has
The reservists wanted to be integrated unconditionally because some of
them had over 18 years’ experience and could not understand why they did
The reservists handed a memorandum to Gauteng Community Safety MEC
In the document they claimed they had been working without pay for years
and were overlooked when permanent vacancies became available . — Sapa
Winnie calms cops versus cops demo
Nontobeko Mtshali 9 February 2010
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela can still command a crowd.
All it took to calm tensions and violence between protesting police
reservists and police officers at Beyers Naude Square in central Joburg
yesterday was the arrival of the "mother of the nation".
Police reservists from around the country had gathered to hand a
memorandum to Gauteng MEC for Community Safety Khabisi Mosunkutu to air
their grievances about working for years without pay, only to be
overlooked when permanent positions became available.
Their protest was to be peaceful, but tempers flared. Bricks were
allegedly thrown at the police, who retaliated with rubber bullets.
While police did not say how many were injured, reservists said more
than 20 had to be taken to hospital after being hit by rubber bullets.
They allege that three of their colleagues had been shot with live
ammunition and were taken to Hillbrow Hospital.
Given Zondo, 35, a reservist from Orlando East, Soweto, said she saw two
people shot at close range by police officers.
"They shot a man and a woman and they dragged them into a police truck.
When they shook the guy to wake him, he was unresponsive," said Zondo, a
reservist for nine years.
Gauteng police spokesman Superintendent Lungelo Dlamini said he was not
aware of the use of live ammunition.
"I don't know about the live ammunition but rubber bullets were used
when bricks were thrown at police officers," said Dlamini.
Pule Molefe, one of the reservists' leaders, said 78 of their members
were arrested and taken to holding cells at the Johannesburg Central
Through Madikizela-Mandela's intervention, however, the arrested
reservists were later released.
She also accepted the reservists' memorandum on behalf of the government
and promised to attend to the matter urgently.
She said it was tragic that the protest action had to take place just
days before the ruling party celebrated its 98th anniversary and the
commemoration of Nelson Mandela's release from prison.
Madikizela-Mandela, an ANC MP, said she would also raise the issue
during the opening of Parliament on Thursday.
Percy Mokala, a Pretoria-based reservist for 25 years, said he felt let
down by the government. He questioned why a person with experience and
know-how would be overlooked for someone who didn't even know how to
take down a statement.
Ministry of Police spokesperson Zweli Mnisi said being a reservist did
not necessarily mean the person would be absorbed into the SAPS.
"Our position is that there will not be an automatic integration into
the police force. We have outlined the key requirements," he explained.
* This article was originally published on page 2 of The Star on
February 09, 2010
Protest Qwelane’s appointment as ambassador to Uganda
Out In Africa 9 February 2010
Cape Town Pride invites our partner organisations, friends and comrades, human rights
and LGBTI activists,and all those who are distressed and angered by the apparent
appointment of Jon Qwelane as South Africa’s Ambassador to Uganda,
to join us in a peaceful protest action.
When: 13h00, Friday, 12 February 2010
Where: Outside Parliament (Plein Street, Cape Town)
What: Please bring placards and completed petitions, and water!
A document will be handed over to a representative (as yet unnamed) of
the Department of Foreign Affairs.
Contact persons: Laura Aukamp 072 512 1886 / Glenn de Swardt 021 425 6463
Full bins spark flat residents' street protest
lyndon Khan Cape Times 10 February 2010
FRUSTRATED that their rubbish had not been collected for two weeks, some
residents of the Dura Flats complex in Atlantis took to the streets in
DA ward councillor Barbara Rass said politicking was behind the protest.
WasteTech, a private contractor hired to remove waste, had reportedly
not collected the rubbish for the past two weeks, which Rass said was
because of a misunderstanding.
A meeting had been held yesterday with the chairman of the Dura Flats
committee and the city. Rass said the issue of waste management had been
resolved, but he said a woman who incited tensions was a member of the
Atlantis police spokesman Cyril Dicks said roads between Charel Uys and
Magnolia Street had to be cordoned off and remained closed to traffic
ID provincial secretary Rodney Lentit distanced the party from the protest.
JZ does a duck to avoid protests
Dominic Mahlangu (Times.co.za) 8 February 2010
President Jacob Zuma cancelled a door-to-door tour of Gugulethu, Cape
Town, apparently fearing a protest intended to embarrass him.
Zuma's visit to the township would have been his first public engagement
after the love-child scandal involving him surfaced.
The president fathered his 20th child with Sonono Khoza, the daughter of
his friend, soccer boss Irvin.
Yesterday, the tour of the ANC stronghold was suddenly cancelled,
apparently after the ANC caught wind of disruptions planned by gender
But the party was quick to claim that Zuma's long-scheduled attendance
at a meeting in Western Cape of its national working committee yesterday
was responsible for the cancellation. They said the meeting was expected
to last until late in the evening.
Spokesman Zizi Kodwa said: "Because of the [committee] meeting we have
no option but to cancel his visit. We are not aware of any planned protest."
Zuma, together with other ANC national executive members, is in Western
Cape as part of commemorations of the 20th anniversary of the release
from prison of former president Nelson Mandela, and of the unbanning of
anti-apartheid political organisations.
ANC leaders are meeting party organisations in the province in
preparation of next year's local government elections.
Zuma will give his state of the nation speech on Thursday night before
the opening of parliament on Friday.
Protest underway in KwaDukuza
There is drama on the north coast
Benita Enoch 8 February 2010
Scores of residents from the Ntshaweni community in KwaDukuza have
blocked the R102 between Stanger and Groutville after embarking on a
protest march this morning.
The demonstrators are demanding that speed humps be put along that route
after a child was knocked over by a speeding motorist in the area
Transport Department spokesperson, Rajen Chinaboo says officials are on
They have been trying to negotiate with the residents over their demands.
Chinaboo says the situation is calm but they have dispatched the SAPS
and Metro police to the area, to assist motorists.
"The R102 between Stanger and Groutville is closed to traffic. Traffic
on the bridge is not very heavily backed up as we're diverting all the
traffic along the N2."
Police fire at reservists
SAPA 8 February 2010
Johannesburg - Police fired rubber bullets at protesting police
reservists in Johannesburg on Monday, Johannesburg metro police said.
Spokesperson Inspector Edna Mamonyane said police opened fire on them
with rubber bullets when the reservists failed to obey and instruction
Reservists were protesting over their integration into the South African
Mamonyane said some of the reservists were arrested for participating in
an illegal march.
"As the metro police, we did not issue a permit for the march, the march
is illegal," she said.
The police were not available for comment.
16 cuffed for violence during Siyathemba protest
Cathy Mohlahlana (Eyewitness News) 8 February 2010
Police have arrested 16 Siyathemba residents in connection with violent
protests in the Mpumalanga township.
Residents blockaded roads with burning tyres on Monday morning. They
also tried to burn down a municipal building.
They were protesting against poor service delivery and a lack of jobs.
The residents apprehended are being held at the Balfour Police Station.
They will appear in the local magistrate’s court on charges of public
violence later this week.
Dozens of police officers patrolling the area on foot have managed to
restore calm, but they are not letting their guard down.
Firefighters have also put out the flames which sprung up when tyres and
tree logs were set alight.
Black smoke could occasionally be seen rising from the township on
Monday evening but many of the residents have resumed their daily chores.
Univen condemns university protest
Sapa 8 February 2010
JOHANNESBURG - The University of Venda (Univen) on Monday condemned
protest action by the National Education Health and Allied Workers’
Union (Nehawu) on the university campus.
“... The action, including tampering with electricity and water supply
to the campus and an illegal protest march on campus this morning
Monday, was unacceptable as it seriously compromises the health and
well-being of both staff and students,” said Professor Peter Mbati,
vice-chancellor and principal of Univen.
Nehawu’s actions follow the implementation of a set of revised human
resource policies resulting from negotiations in 2009 and approved by
the university Council on November 27.
Mbati said that while the university recognised the right of trade
unions to represent workers, it had a responsibility to implement and
manage approved policies.
“Nehawu participated in the consultation process around these policy
changes. At no given time were employees’ conditions of service changed
unilaterally without consulting all representative structures,” Mbati said.
“Nehawu has reneged on the agreed policy changes, including the
negotiated salary increment of 10 percent, citing lack of mandate on the
part of members who represented them during the negotiations,” he charged.
Nehawu is demanding a 20 percent increase.
“Management is also concerned that Nehawu has deliberately deviated from
the terms and conditions of the recognition agreement entered into with
the university in June 2008,” said Mbati.
“In terms of this agreement, there are steps that need to be followed
before the union resorts to industrial action,” he said. Nehawu was not
available for comment.
Cosatu to protest over Fifa
Dorianne Arendse 8 February 2010|
The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) in the Western Cape
would be calling on Nedlac to convene a meeting with themselves, Fifa,
the provincial government to set the terms of procurement for activities
related to the World Cup. This announcement came on Saturday from Cosatu
after it emerged that the clothes and mascots for the World Cup were
been made in a sweatshop in China.
According to Cosatu's Tony Ehrenreich, the Western Cape is losing jobs
as a result of Fifa's actions. He said that whilst it seems that the
rest of the country is benefiting from Fifa and World Cup related
activities, the economy in the Western Cape is still being prejudiced.
"Cosatu is really concerned that the number of products that is going to
be used in the World Cup including the Zakumi icon, the sweaters, the
busses and a range of other products is being imported and not
manufactured in South Africa where it can create jobs as the legacy of
the World Cup," Ehrenreich said.
He explained that the conduct of Fifa and related agencies have
effectively breached the terms of the agreements contained in the
Government Gazette. As a result, the trade union is calling on the South
African government to withdraw the Government Gazettes and to negotiate
new agreements with FIFA that promotes jobs in the country and has to be
held to clearer terms in respect of procurement.
According to Ehrenreich, the job losses in the province were due to
unethical traders and procurement managers. "This is mainly due to
unethical traders and procurement managers. And that is why Cosatu is
calling on government to tighten up provisions that enforces compliance
with local procurement that creates South African jobs," said
Ehrenreich. He added that pickets will be held against Fifa on Thursday
in Cape Town, as they will not be having any protests during the world
cup. VOC (Dorianne Arendse)
Service delivery protesters in court
Ntwaagae Seleka The Sowetan 5 February 2010
FIFTEEN people have been arrested for taking part in an illegal
gathering at Oranjeville, Free State police said.
The arrests follow a service delivery protest that turned ugly when
angry residents damaged the Metsimaholo local municipality offices
The angry protesters barricaded the roads with burning tyres, tree
branches and rocks and pelted the municipality’s offices with stones and
other objects demanding better services.
Police spokesperson Constable Selloane Legae said their members had to
use force to disperse the unruly crowd.
The group appeared in the Heilbron magistrate’s court yesterday where
their case was postponed to February 24.
Disgruntled residents had demanded sanitation, roads and electricity
from the municipality.
A resident, Maki Mokoena, said: “We are demanding that our township
should be improved like others in the province.”
She said she had been staying in an RDP house that has neither water nor
electricity for two years.
Residents also claim they relieve themselves in the bushes because their
houses do not have toilets.
Municipal speaker William Bulwane said they were aware of the demands
and were attending to them. “We are phasing out the bucket system in the
area. We are going to bring more improvements during our next financial
Three hurt during campus chaos
Sapa 5 February 2010
Three people were injured during a confrontation between students and
police at Tshwane University of Technology's Soshanguve campus on
Friday, a university spokesman said.
Chaos broke at around 8am on day three of registration when a group
believed to be members of the student organisation Pan Africanist
Student Movement of Azania (Pasma) sang at the entrance while their
leader climbed a perimeter wall, said spokesman Gilbert Mokwatedi.
"(He wanted) to address students queuing for registration. As security
officials tried to remove this person from the wall, a group of people
pelted security officers with stones," said Mokwatedi.
A security guard was injured when he a stone hit him in the eye and a
student was injured when she fell trying to run away from the
A police officer was also injured, and the three were taken to hospital.
The city's department of community safety spokesman Console Tleane said
the windscreen of a metro police van was smashed with a rock by "unruly
He said police retaliated in self-defence and to protect students who
wanted to continue with registration.
"The group fled on foot and disappeared into the township. No one was
arrested or hurt. The situation is now calm and the registration of
students is continuing normally," said Tleane on Friday morning.
He said the identities of the perpetrators were known to police and
police will continue to maintain a presence at the campus.
As one of the security measures, the street in front of the campus had
been closed off to traffic since Wednesday.
Pasma spokesman Vusi Mahlangu said they were peacefully trying to speak
to queuing students when they were attacked by "bouncers".
"We were attacked and we retaliated. Two people from our group were
brutally beaten up," said Mahlangu.
He said they were protesting against various problems students had
encountered since Wednesday when the campus re-opened.
"There's about 250 students in our list who were either told they were
not in the system, that there was no longer space although they have
been accepted and their applications could not be found."
Mahlangu said they were regrouping to decide on their next action.
However, Tleane warned: "We wish to warn this group that no disruptive
or violent behaviour will be tolerated under any circumstances.
"Any act of violence against the police or other students will be dealt
The campus was re-opened on Wednesday after it was closed due to a
violent student protest last week in which one student was injured.
The student representative council and political activities were
suspended and a court order was obtained against Pasma.
Students were unhappy about what they claimed was a slow registration
process and filthy residences.
The university cited drunkardness, hooliganism and drug abuse as the
reasons behind the closure.
Vice-chancellor Errol Tyobeka and Tshwane mayor Gwen Ramokgopa have
vowed to spend millions on upgrading the university. - Sapa
Protesting traders force council to re-think rent policy
Santham Pillay 7 February 2010
Trading at Durban's Verulam Market came to a standstill this week when
traders protested over the eThekwini municipality's new rental policy.
Dozens of fresh produce and livestock traders refused to comply with the
policy, proposed last month, to pay their rent three months in advance,
forcing the municipality to close the market.
The new rental policy was due to be implemented from February 1.
Traders at the market at present pay a fee of R15 a day to trade for
three days a week.
On Wednesday, the chairman of the traders' association, Manna Naidoo,
handed over a memorandum to the market manager, Samson Dlamini.
In the memorandum, the traders said they wanted the present rental
agreement to remain.
They added if the municipality refused to agree to this, they would
challenge it in the High Court.
Rena Dabydin, 56, has been a trader for 32 years and has been operating
at the Verulam Market since it opened 22 years ago.
She said she hoped the market management would allow them to continue as
they had in the past.
"The people that come here don't have stable jobs. That's why they trade
here three times a week. Sometimes we make only R50 a day," she said.
On Thursday, Durban deputy mayor Logie Naidoo addressed the traders,
telling them that a "compromise" would be reached between the market
management and traders' association.
Dlamini told the Sunday Times Extra that negotiations over the policy
would begin tomorrow.
"The market is open as usual while negotiations are taking place," he said.
He added that, for the month of February, the fee of R15 a day would
remain, but said they would be "discussing the possibility of phasing in
a one-month rental advance from next month".
Trader Selvan Govender said the news had been welcomed by the traders.
"At least we can trade now while they are carrying on with discussions.
That's the main thing."
Manna Naidoo said the compromise was "a victory for the traders".
"There are no preconditions prior to the negotiations. We are thankful
that officials have come to their senses.
"Whatever compromise we come to should be acceptable to all parties."
Exposed: Trio behind BCM mess
Gcina Ntsaluba 6 February 2010
EAST London’s first ANC mayor, Lulamile Nazo, has emerged as the key man
behind attempts to oust Buffalo City mayor Zukisa Faku.
Nazo and his foot-soldiers – BCM councillor Sonny du Plessis and Qinirha
branch deputy chairperson Mzodumo Dliwayo – have brought turmoil to the
council through their campaign.
The Dispatch has established from various sources that the trio had
# The case of fraud that was opened against Faku for allegedly misusing
# A court application by Du Plessis to stop the appointment of new
municipal manager Mandla Sithole; and
# Tuesday’s protest march to East London’s City Hall, where hundreds of
Buffalo City residents gathered to demand the immediate removal of Faku
from her office. All three men were at the march.
But yesterday Nazo denied being the mastermind behind the coup plot to
overthrow the mayor.
His denial came as ANC provincial spokesperson Mlibo Qoboshiyane warned
party members to toe the line. It was worrying to note that active
members in the ANC were colluding to overthrow the mayor, he said.
“We are observing this issue, especially that of the former mayor Nazo
... The manner in which he is conducting himself is (harmful to the
Nazo, a former Member of the Provincial Legislature, said the march was
organised by the zonal structures of Buffalo City.
“It was not a plot or march driven by personal agendas, it was a normal
public display to show the dissatisfaction of the people with
He said that the core issue behind the march was “clean governance” – an
area he accused Faku of failing at.
Another figure fingered as a plotter against Faku is Du Plessis, who was
the council’s Chief Whip last year until he was removed for taking the
council to court.
He denied being involved in this week’s march, despite being caught by
“I had nothing to do with the march,” said Du Plessis before he was
asked to explain how he was caught on video.
“I must have been observing it from a distance, then,” he said.
Dliwayo, who is the ANC Ward 28 Qinirha branch deputy chairperson, led
the march with Nazo and physically handed over the memorandum.
He was not available for comment yesterday but the Dispatch recorded him
at the picket calling on Faku to resign immediately.
He accused her of misusing municipal funds to buy clothes and food for
herself and friends.
Faku was approached for comment but declined.
However, Buffalo City council Speaker Luleka Simon said the march was a
flimsy attempt to undermine the mayor and disrupt the administrative
functions of the municipality.
Simon said some of the people who orchestrated the march were active
members of the ANC and included Du Plessis and Dliwayo.
Simon said the faction trying to destabilise the city consisted of
individuals who were “disgruntled and highly frustrated”.
A close ally of Faku, who asked to remain anonymous, said the moves to
topple the mayor had everything to do with power struggles.
Buffalo City has been racked by council infighting for months now and,
as a result, municipal services are in disarray.
President Jacob Zuma’s office has previously warned the Buffalo City
council against politicking at the expense of service delivery. — By
GCINA NTSALUBA, Political Reporter, firstname.lastname@example.org
Watch a video of the march against Mayor Faku at
Tin Town: A short documentary on the Symphony Way Anti-Eviction Campaign
Promised housing by the South African government, more than a hundred
Cape Town families found community through their struggle as squatters
on a sandy road known as Symphony Way. Recently moved by court order to
an indefinitely temporary relocation area dubbed ‘Tin Town’ or
‘Blikkiesdorp’ in Afrikaans, community members reflect on that road in
their past and on the road ahead.
Title: Tin Town
A Film By: Nora Connor, Clementine Wallace & Colton Margus
Produced By: Barefoot Workshops, Inc
Instructors: Alison Fast, Teddy Symes & Chandler Griffin
Sponsors by: Canon USA, Sennheiser, Bogen Imaging, Lowel, Litepanels
Created: December 2009, Cape Town, South Africa
Strike at the Edgewood Campus
Communiqué from the Office of the Executive Director Corporate Relations
5 February 2010
At 08:00 this morning, 5 February, a small group of students embarked in
a protest action at the Edgewood Campus of the University of
KwaZulu-Natal where the gates were barricaded preventing cars from
entering the campus.
We understand that the students have three grievances:
Admission: students are complaining that a number of students applied
and have not been accepted. Edgewood campus houses the Faculty of
Education. For the 2010 academic year, the faculty received over 10 000
applications, with about 5000 meeting our entry requirements. The
faculty has a capacity to enroll 700 students and as such cannot
accommodate more than this.
Accommodation: Since 2009 the university has been in consultation with
private service providers to secure additional accommodation facilities
for our students. That process is still continuing and the SRC is
involved in trying to secure suitable and additional residence
facilities for our students.
Financial Aid: the funds that the university received from NSFAS are
limited. All endeavours have been made by the university to finance as
many students as the NSFAS fund can assist, including the top up fund
that the university allocates on an annual basis to assist students.
The university's management is on site and is engaging with both the
Central and Local SRCs. The university is committed to ensuring that the
matter is resolved.
The South African Police Services is on site.
Ms Nomonde Mbadi
Executive Director: Corporate Relations
031 260 7958
Gauteng unveils its 'golden egg'
Marisa Oosthuizen 4 February 2010
Gauteng takes the first step in government’s plan to root out bad
"Recently we have seen a wave of service delivery protests against the
slow pace of service delivery...In response government has recognized
the need for provinces and national government to focus on local
government," said Gauteng MEC for Local Government and Housing, Kgaogelo
Lekgoro at the launch of the province's Local Government Turn Around
He emphasized the strategy should be seen as a continued effort by
government to improve services on a local level. The MEC indicated that
the first step will be to identify challenges and priorities at every
municipality in the province.
"From March onwards we will then begin to implement those issues we
agreed upon... short-term goals towards 2011 and your medium- and
long-term goals beyond that," Lekgoro said.
A wave of service delivery protests hit South Africa in 2009
Gauteng Mayors and municipal managers all gathered in Johannesburg for
the launch and were briefed by the Department of Co-operative Governance
on government's turnaround strategy for municipalities. The Department
described 2010 as critical, warning that poor service delivery impacts
negatively on investment confidence.
"It really starts with getting the basics in place, because you're not
going to have any investor confidence in our areas if we finding that
the roads, the water systems, water quality issues are crumbling on us,"
said Deputy Director General of Free Basic Services, Yufus Patel.
He said that municipalities should be able to deal on their own with
service delivery complaints and that it shouldn't be necessary for
President Jacob Zuma to set up a hotline to accommodate this function.
"As far as possible where municipalities can deal with those problems,
can have their own kind of systems to record complaints...ensure it's
resolved, we believe there is a lot municipalities can do as that first
layer of government," Patel said.
Cops intervene during protest
Sapa 3 February 2010
A service delivery protest has erupted in the Khombisa informal
settlement in Etwatwa early on Wednesday, East Rand police said.
Constable Timothy Masilela said about 200 members of the community had
gathered and barricaded Esselyn Road in the area, prompting intervention
by the Ekurhuleni metro police.
The crowd had since been addressed by a council representative, Aubrey
Nxumalo, who arranged to formally meet the protesters at the Daveyton
community hall at 11am.
Masilela said the crowd dispersed peacefully without the police having
to use rubber bullets or any other force.
Ekurhuleni Municipality spokesman Zweli Dlamini confirmed the council
would meet the protesters at 11am. - Sapa
Calm returns to Daveyton following unrest
SABC 3 February 2010
Residents in Combiza, near Daveyton on Gauteng's East Rand, have
retreated to their homes after a violent protest early this morning. One
man has been arrested while others claim to have been hit by rubber
bullets during a clash with the police.
Police spokesperson Timothy Masilela confirms that calm has been
restored after residents barricaded roads. Protesters were complaining
about service delivery, a concern which was addressed and agreed on
following intervention by one of the local authorities.
In the Western Cape, at the Ludwe Ngamlana Primary School in Khayelitsha
on the Cape Flats, the situation is still tense. Police have been
deployed at the school to calm tempers after a group of angry parents
tried to disrupt classes for the third consecutive day.
The group is calling for the governing body to be dissolved after its
term expired in December. The police have reportedly been in talks with
fuming parents, persuading them to allow classes to resume. Gates were
opened this morning after the school was closed down for two days. The
Education Department has warned that those who disrupt learning will be
Questions raised over service delivery turnaround strategy
City Press 3 February 2010
WHILE Government is upbeat about its turnaround strategy to tackle
problems of service delivery that have led to violent countrywide
unrest, some members of the watchdog committee overseeing the plans are
less convinced that it will work.
The Local Government’s Turn Around Strategy (LGTAS), which is intended
to ensure basic service delivery, came under the spotlight during
nationwide public Ad Hoc Committee on Service Delivery hearings that
kicked off in Parliament yesterday.
They consist of three days of public hearings in all nine provinces and
are aimed at finding out whether LGTAS is working – and how to ensure
that there is proper service delivery.
Among the priorities government hopes to achieve by 2011, is to address
immediate financial and administrative problems in municipalities, said
Yusuf Patel, the deputy Director-General in the department of
co-operative governance and traditional affairs.
It also intends introducing regulations to halt indiscriminate hiring
and firing and also ensuring the implementation of a transparent
municipal supply chain management system, Patel, told the hearings.
Patel said key turnaround interventions would result in national
government organising itself better and would result in provinces
improving their support and oversight responsibilities over local
In addition, municipalities would be forced to reflect on their own
performances and develop their “tailor made” turn around strategies.
But despite Patel’s upbeat presentation, some members of the all-party
committee said they had “heard this all before” – and believed nothing
concrete would be achieved in improving service delivery.
DA MP Sejamothopo Motau said: “We get these nice presentations over and
over, as it’s easy to write the nice words and say nice things.”
But lack of service delivery would continue to be a problem as long as
officials responsible for the problems were not held responsible, he said.
Cope MP Thozamile Botha said the lack of collaboration between different
departments had led to a collapse of existing infrastructure and a
situation where houses were left with no running water or electricity.
Botha said that in the past responsibility for infrastructure fell under
two different departments – Housing and Local Government – but there was
poor collaboration between the two.
He questioned whether the turnaround strategy would improve
communication between the two departments, adding that the “continuing
to dish out grants and houses . . .” is definitely going to cause
problems for the country in the future because this practice was not
n his presentation, Patel set out in stark statistics the growth in
service delivery, increasing from only 106 reported between 1994 to
2008, compared to 101 alone in 2009.
Twenty five percent of all municipalities across the country had
experienced this type of protest. These protests happened in specific
wards rather than across entire municipalities experiencing protests,
with a third occurring in informal settlements.
The worst affected province was Gauteng, while in Mpumalanga and
Limpopo, 56% of all service delivery protests took place outside of the
metros, he said.
He added that 15% of all protests in 2009 were in the Western Cape.
Government 'firefighters' to fill the gaps
Ella Smook (Cape Argus) 3 February 2010
The government is considering deploying rapid response "firefighters" to
move into municipalities as quickly as possible when failure of
governance is identified, as part of its local government turnaround
Parliament's ad hoc committee on service delivery started a three-day
public hearing yesterday to consider how to address problems hampering
service delivery in the wake of a record number of protests last year.
The Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs
presented an ambitious plan outlining how it intended to restore the
confidence of people in municipalities and to rebuild and improve basic
requirements for a "functional, accountable, responsive, effective and
efficient" local government.
According to an analysis by the department, service delivery protests
were caused by a growing demand for infrastructure development and
housing; open discontent and accusations of nepotism and
maladministration; rising costs of utility tariffs, especially
electricity; local power struggles, and the shunning of legitimate
platforms to resolve issues.
It has identified the root causes of municipal problems as systemic
factors, including limited revenue bases; inappropriate legislation
which either over or under-regulated; political conflict; the lack of
capacity, skills and performance management systems, weak oversight and
The DA's Sej Motau, representing the energy portfolio committee at the
hearings, said the problem with the government's plan was that the same
ideas presented themselves "over and over".
"What happens if all these nice things you have in this strategy are not
"I will tell you - nothing."
Motau said the country was in its current position "because people
employed to do a job don't do it". "And when they don't do it, there are
The department has identified 12 priorities to be addressed this year.
They include sorting out immediate financial and administrative problems
in municipalities; putting in place regulations to "stem indiscriminate
hiring and firing"; the implementation of a transparent municipal supply
chain management system; and the launch of a "good citizenship" campaign.
Its vision for 2014 was the eradication of all informal settlements, the
significant reduction of infrastructure backlogs and a reduction in
To accomplish its goals, a legislative reform programme for local
government would need to be undertaken, which would include
"Urgent steps" would also be undertaken to strengthen professionalism at
local government level.
The hearings continue at Parliament today, with presentations by various
government departments, the SA Local Government Association and Empowerdex.
* This article was originally published on page 5 of The Cape Argus
on February 03, 2010
Daily Dispatch 4 February 2010
BUFFALO City Municipality is a good example of what happens to a place
of governance when politics go bad: It becomes a snake pit where
promises made in the past are forgotten and the architects of unrest
turn into gormless vipers. All attention is diverted from the tasks at
hand and energies are spent on the intricacies of plotting and scheming
the elimination of rivals – no doubt with the control of assets and
personal gain being the end result.
Suddenly the privileged role of being a provider for the people is
forgotten amid the cacophony of hissing and sniping that assumes the
daily order of public life.
So it is with Buffalo City Municipality, where things have become so bad
that simple tasks like collecting refuse are beyond the capability of an
Although, we might find the truth of the matter is more accurately a
lack of concern in the corridors of power.
The people entrusted with our welfare and who are paid handsome salaries
to do the job just don’t care.
They’re too busy looking over their shoulder for the next blindside
attack from someone who might have once called them “colleague” or
If you think this is an exaggeration, consider Tuesday’s protest outside
East London City Hall where several hundred people picketed on the
steps, calling for Mayor Zukisa Faku to step down.
Prior to this event we were made to believe it was a march by the people
against Buffalo City’s poor performance in the service delivery stakes.
But on closer examination it became clear that this was an ANC protest
against one of their own. This had nothing to do with the municipality
or its poor showing.
This was all about the latest ploy to evict Faku from her executive
throne as mayor and install another candidate from a rival faction.
The Dispatch knows exactly who is pulling the strings in this case and
we will reveal the true dynamics behind BCM’s infighting in the coming days.
What we can say is that Faku’s own councillors were the protagonists
here. The people of East London and King William’s Town deserve to know
that this is how their elected officials conduct their business.
Perhaps we shouldn’t be alarmed by this behaviour; it could even be seen
as a little naive to hope for anything better in the current climate of
Right now it’s a certainty, like death itself, that the reptilian
politics of Buffalo City are far from over. The ANC leadership has shown
by its lack of action that it has no control over the situation.
All that equates to a poor outlook for the year. Those who anticipate
more of the same will be better prepared to withstand the consequences
that are sure to follow.
ANCYL joins municipal fray
The ANC Youth League (ANCYL) in the Bojanala Region has added their
voice to the concerns of residents of Madi-beng about poor service
delivery from the Madibeng Municipality.
Mr. David Masike, chairman of the ANCYL in the Bojanala Region, told
Kormorant at a protest march by appro-ximately 3 000 resi-dents of
Mothutlung to the municipal building in Brits on Friday, that the
problems in Madibeng will be taken up with the ANC’s Regional Task Team
in a week’s time.
The residents announced during their pro-test that they no longer accept
Clr. Dipuo Mabiletsa as their ward councillor and handed over a
memorandum to the Executive Mayor of Madibeng, Clr. Sophie
Molokoane-Machika, giving the municipality seven days to respond to
Masike said that the current unrest in Madibeng can be ascribed to a
lack of political leadership and the fact that the leadership does not
respond to the community’s concerns.
He said that the people in the municipality who should respond to these
concerns are the mayor and the members of the mayoral committee but they
don’t. According to Masike the ANC Youth League in the Bojanala Region
will be tabling a document at the ANC Regional Task Team. They will be
asking for intervention by the ANC or alternatively the redeployment of
the mayor and mayoral committee.
In their memorandum the community mem-bers of Mothutlung alleged that
Clr. Mabiletsa is unable to attend to her responsibilities as ward
councillor because of other responsibilities.
They said that the councillor apparently refuses to speak to the
community un-less she calls a meet-ing and that she is acting as a
labour broker. They demanded investigations into a number of municipal
projects in Mothlutlung, threatening mass action if the municipality
failed to respond.
The municipality indicated that they are still studying the memorandum.
19 to appear for public violence in Mpumalanga
Jacaranda 94.2 Newsteam 2 February 2010
Police have arrested 19 people after a protest in Mpumalanga turned violent.
Police are monitoring the situation in Komatipoort after 19 people were
arrested for public violence and malicious damage to property in a
protest on Monday.
The police's Malcolm Mokomene said it seemed as if the protest was
sparked by dissatisfaction with service delivery in the Mpumalanga town.
"Going around, we found that people were complaining about the roads not
being well constructed as there are many potholes. Service delivery in
terms of water supply is another main concern of the community," he said.
"Some four-hundred people barricaded roads using all sorts of equipment
including old scrap vehicles which were lying along the road," he added.
Police managed to disperse the residents and clear the road for traffic.
Those arrested include youth and women. They are expected to appear at
the Tonga Magistrates' Court this afternoon.
Tension boils over at Durban varsity - ‘We might have to close the campus’
Khulekani Mazibuko (Sowetan) 4 February 2010
VIOLENCE broke out for a second day at the Mangosuthu University of
Technology in Umlazi township, bringing lectures to a standstill.
Police fired rubber bullets to disperse angry protesting students who
threw bricks and stones at them .
Umlazi police and the public order police wasted no time in bringing
order on the campus.
Several students had been detained yesterday and are expected to be
charged with assault.
Management said if the protest continues, they would be forced to close
the university indefinitely.
On Tuesday, 14 students were detained, including the president of the
Students Representative Council Duma Ntyikale.
The detainees were released yesterday after appearing in court in Umlazi .
They are expected to appear in court on April 8 on assault charges. The
university’s computer facility in the library was vandalised.
SAPS Superintendent Buhle Ngidi said police will maintain a strong
presence at the campus.
“Those who were detained on Tuesday were given free bail and will appear
in court on assault charges,” said Ngidi.
Students are defiant, vowing to continue the protest .
“They must arrest us again, if they do not want us to speak,” Ntyikale
said after being released.
He urged students to protest over what they believe in and not to fear
“Away with police, away,” Ntyikale shouted.
Xolani Gcaba, the SRC’s media spokesperson, accused the university
management of not wanting to meet them to resolve their grievances
He said the students’ main concerns are increases in fees and the poor
state of student accommodation.
Students are also calling for the resignation of the dean of students
Gcaba also alleged that the institution has a contract to use 16 buses
to transport students but that only six were being provided.
He said students had to wake up early to catch a bus, or miss classes.
Tshwane South College CEO told to step down
JP du Plessis Eyewitness News
There were renewed calls for the Tshwane South College CEO to step down
Officials from the Tshwane South College, the Education Department and
labour and student unions were due to meet in Centurion on Thursday
The campus was gripped by violence this week as lecturers went on the
rampage to protest against the reinstatement of Joe Chiloane.
Chiloane left office while an investigation into allegations of
mismanagement and abuse of staff against him continued but the charges
were dropped and he returned to work earlier this week.
The Pan Africanist Youth Congress of Azania’s Leaga Lesufi said the
quickest solution would be to pull Chiloane from office.
“It was clear from the onset that the lecturers and the non-lecturing
staff would revolt through this process of reinstatement that is rather
bizarre,” he said.
(Edited by Deshnee Subramany)
Cops nabbed 19 for public violence
Sapa 1 February 2010
Police arrested 19 people for public violence and malicious damage to
property during a service delivery protest march in Tonga Village, near
Komatipoort, Mpumalanga, on Monday.
Superintendent Malcolm Mokomene said the march started at 6am on the
road between Tonga and Naas villages.
He said about 400 residents barricaded the road with rocks and burning
tyres, demanding water, houses and jobs from the local council.
"The police tried to stop the residents from protesting, because their
action was not legal, but they persisted and threw stones at the police
until they fired rubber bullets to disperse them," said Mokomene.
He said the situation had returned to normal by 5pm, but that police
patrols of the area would continue.
Mokomene said most of those arrested were youths. They included seven
women. - Sapa
Hostel dwellers fume at 100% rise in rentals
Boniswa Mohale 1 February 2010
Durban hostel dwellers this weekend threatened to disrupt the World Cup
games at Durban's Moses Mabhida Stadium if their demands for lower
rentals are not met.
More than 900 hostel dwellers marched on Saturday to protest against the
city's 100 percent rental increase.
Dalton Hostel chairperson Mthembiseni Thusi said they had been
negotiating with the eThekwini Municipality since 2007, but their issues
had yet not been resolved.
"The city has increased the rent by 100 percent, while they are not
maintaining the hostels. We have raised these issues with them, but
clearly our demands are falling on deaf ears. If our issues are not
resolved before the World Cup starts, we will disrupt the games at the
stadium," said Thusi.
Police spokesperson Captain Thulani Zwane described the march as peaceful.
"There was a large number of police at the scene during and after the
march. We did not receive any reports of intimidation or violence, so I
can say all went well," said Zwane.
Thusi said they were aware that their threats would be viewed seriously,
as Minister of Police Nathi Mthethwa had already issued a warning to
people who wanted to disrupt the 2010 games.
In January, Mthethwa said the country would act swiftly and "with no
mercy" against criminals and terrorists who threatened the World Cup.
Saturday's march started at Botha Gardens and proceeded down Dr Pixley
Ka Seme (West) Street to City Hall.
Traffic was disrupted for three hours as hostel dwellers sang and danced
along the way. Businesses along Dr Pixley Ka Seme Street closed their
shutters and traders hid their stock.
The march was organised by the Ubunye bamahostela, an organisation
formed by hostel dwellers who said they had been in negotiations with
the eThekwini Municipality to decrease rent and properly maintain the
hostels for the past three years.
The marchers comprised hostel dwellers from Thokoza, Dalton, Jacobs,
KwaMashu, Makhutha, Glebelands and Wema hostels.
Besides the rent increase, hostel dwellers said they also needed
schools, créches, clinics and job opportunities.
Muzi Nyandeni, chairperson of Ubunye bamahostela, handed their
memorandum to Cyril Xaba, a representative from the KwaZulu-Natal
Premier's office. He said they would give the office one week to
respond, and if their demands were not met, they would proceed with
other strategies, including disrupting the World Cup.
Xaba promised that the list of demands would be handed to the provincial
* This article was originally published on page 5 of The Daily News
on February 01, 2010
Motsoaledi service delivery protest on hold
jozifm 1 February 2010
Motsoaledi informal residents have decided to stop their service
This follows a meeting between resident leaders and MMC for housing in
the city of Joburg Ruby Mathang.
Earlier last week Residents took to the streets and blockaded parts of
Chris Hani road with stones and burning tyres.
Residents were up in arms against what they called poor service delivery
in the area.
Resident spokesman Lucky Ngubeni said they are going to have another
meeting with leaders from the housing department later on this month.
Ngubeni said they will put their demonstrations on hold for now.
Tshwane rocked by another tertiary protest
Imraan Karolia (Eyewitness news) 2 February 2010
Staff and learners at the Tshwane South College in Centurion were forced
to evacuate the main building as protesters trashed some parts of the
campus on Tuesday.
Details of what sparked the unrest are still unclear. But a lecturer
told Eyewitness News it appeared the outraged demonstrators were unhappy
with the centre’s CEO.
“People were carrying fire extinguishers and what ever they could use in
the riot. We started seeing a lot of smoke at the admin block, and they
were breaking windows,” said the lecturer.
Some students said police were shooting rubber bullets while students
were discharging fire extinguishers.
Meanwhile, Tshwane mayor Gwen Ramokgopa has been meeting with management
at the Tshwane University of Technology in Soshanguve, north of Pretoria.
The campus has seen several clashes with student bodies in the past
week, which have resulted in it being temporarily shut down.
Management believes criminal elements are involved in the unrest.
Police and students clash at Umlazi campus
Classes were disrupted at the Mangosuthu University of Technology after
a students protest turned violent in Umlazi, Durban
Nompumelelo Magwaza 2 February 2010
Dozens of students were injured in clashes with police at the Mangosuthu
University of Technology in Umlazi, Durban, on Tuesday.
Chaos broke out when students gathered outside the university's
premises, claiming that the management had locked them out of the
Students' representative council spokesperson Xolani Gcaba said the
students had been chased out of the university by security guards on the
instructions of the management.
"We are not sure why this happened. The students were told to leave the
university as the management was having a meeting. The students were not
allowed inside and they were also not allowed to wait outside the
"Police were called and told us that we were obstructing traffic, but
the students had nowhere to go."
He said the students had been peaceful at the time of the clash with the
"The students were caught off guard - police just attacked without reason."
Gcaba said about 20 students had been arrested and several had been
treated at Prince Mshiyeni Memorial Hospital for wounds caused by rubber
Police Superintendent Jay Naicker said the students had blocked
Mangosuthu Highway, preventing cars from using the road.
"We also received reports that students were stoning police vehicles and
burning tyres. Three of our officers were injured and five police
vehicles were stoned. The students have been charged with public violence."
While The Mercury was at the scene, police opened fire with rubber
bullets on students standing at the roadside. The students had been
waiting for their leaders, who had been meeting the university's
management over fee increases, academic exclusion, and accommodation
issues, to address them.
ANC Youth League provincial chairperson Mxolisi Kaunda said he had been
in the meeting when he had heard gunshots and students screaming.
Confronting the policeman in charge, Kaunda asked if the students had
been violent, and the officer said: "No." The officer said he did not
know why the students had been shot at.
"We had been asking the students to disperse the entire day and they
would not listen. I am not sure what started the shooting, I do not know
why the students were shot at," he said angrily.
The university's administrator, Mashupye Kgaphola, said police had been
called to assist because the students had barricaded the entrance and
would not allow anyone in.
"We had to let the staff go home as a precautionary measure. The
students were provocative and we had to get the police to help the
He said the university had dropped its initial fee increase from 10
percent to 8.5 percent. "We are currently in meetings with the SRC and
we have agreed on some issues. We will be meeting again tomorrow
# This breaking news article was supplied exclusively to www.iol.co.za
by the news desk at our sister publication, The Mercury.
DUT discuss accommodation with SRC
Lusanda Doko 2 February 2010
Officials at the Durban University of Technology are locked in meetings
with the SRC in an effort to find a resolution to the ongoing problem of
The student reps have threatened to once again hold protests after
accusing the university of not living up to its end of the deal.
They say many students are still without accommodation even though they
had reached an agreement with management last week.
To make matters worse, two residences in the Midlands, which were shut
down last week because of water shortages, are still closed.
Last week, students had to be dispersed with rubber bullets during
demonstrations outside the Mansfield campus.
The SRC's Mfanafuthi Ngwabe says if the issue is not resolved they are
willing go back on the streets again.
"There are many students particularly first years that are coming from
Some of them they are saying they are going to deregister because they
do not have accommodation, so we are going to engage that with management."
Millions needed for campus security upgrade
Sapa 2 February 2010
Millions of rands will be spent to upgrade security at Tshwane
University of Technology's (TUT) Soshanguve campus, management said on
"Security is key in any organisation," vice-chancellor Errol Tyobeka
said in Pretoria during a visit by Tshwane Mayor Gwen Ramokgopa.
The campus was closed, the student representative council and political
activities were suspended and a court order was obtained against the Pan
Africanist Student Movement (Pasma) last week.
This, after a student was injured in violent protests at the university
over students' unhappiness with what they claimed was a slow
registration process and filthy residences.
The university cited lawlessness, hooliganism, alcohol and drug abuse as
being behind the closure. A dagga plantation was also found on campus
during the eviction of about 400 students over the weekend.
During her visit on Tuesday, Ramokgopa called on outside investors to
try and help build the campus.
"We encourage investments for the improvement in the university, to
complement the work that the municipality is doing," she said.
Measures would be put in place to ensure that there were only legitimate
students at the university, she said. Improving the crowded entrance was
also under consideration.
She and Tyobeka called on students to desist from acts of violence as
management was in talks with the student bodies.
"We are constantly in dialogue with the central SRC and we've set up
mechanisms for further dialogue with all student groups. We are always
available to discuss issues."
Tyobeka said they would stabilise the situation and ensure a harmonious
working relationship. The university will re-open on Wednesday.
"We are moving forward and preparing to re-open. We are excited about
it," he said. He urged students to make use of online facilities for
Meanwhile, the Pan Africanist Party lashed out at the university for
creating a perception that Pasma leaders were hooligans bent on burning
and looting without cause.
"This is, of course, far from the truth. The student leaders have raised
serious concerns around academic and financial exclusions," the
organisation said in a statement. - Sapa
WORLD CUP OUTRAGE: COSATU Western Cape to protest FIFA events.
COSATU Press Statement 2 FEBRUARY 2010
COSATU is appalled that there is a company that won the tender to make
Zakumi that is not committed to South Africa and the important challenge
of creating jobs. The clothing Sector has lost thousands of jobs in the
Western Cape and had hoped that the World Cup would provide the
opportunities to those jobs to be reinstated. We were appalled to hear
that the T-shirts for the World Cup and Bafana Bafana were not made in
South Africa. This concern has however turned to outrage, that in spite
of our please the Zakumi is now also being manufactured in China. This
means that there is a complete disregard to the need to ensure a World
Cup legacy that would be jobs in South Africa. SA has the capacity to
manufacture the Zakumi, but the greed of the Manufacturers or the
Company who won the bid is leading to them having the Zakumi made in
slave labour conditions, in China.
This will have the effect that the people of the Western Cape having
spent Billions of rands of public funds to build the stadiums, will not
have benefit of jobs spin off from the World Cup. We will not allow this
false Zakumi that is supposed to be a symbol of our Nation to be sold in
South Africa. We will boycott that products and any other made outside
of South Africa. We demand that FIFA stop the unscrupulous conduct
taking place around the world cup, by a cabal of FIFA beneficiaries. All
World Cup linked products must be made in South Africa, where imports
are required these must be made under fair trade conditions.
Should FIFA ignore our legitimate demands we will stop any FIFA or World
Cup related event in this City until FIFA behave ethically and insist on
ethical standards. There can be no normal World Cup sports events in
Cape Town, when the working people are exploited by FIFA.
FOR ANY QUESTIONS PLS CALL TONY AT 082 77 33 194
March closes shops in Durban:Durban hostel residents take to streets
Sapa 30 January 2010
Shops along Durban's Dr Pixley KaSeme (West) Street were closed as 800
hostel residents marched through the Durban CBD on Saturday.
The hostel residents from various areas in Durban took to the streets on
Saturday morning, protesting against a 100 percent rental increase and
the filthy conditions they live in.
Armed with knobkerries and sticks, residents of Thokoza, Dalpon, Jacobs,
Kwamashu, Umlazi and Makhuta and other areas danced and chanted songs
displaying their unhappiness with the municipality.
"Nobody cares about us. It's extremely dirty where we stay... There was
also an increase of rent by 100 percent without negotiations," said
Mthembiseni Thusi, chairman of the Dalpon hostel residents.
He was among angry protesters who were marching from Botha's Park along
Durban's West street, enroute to the city hall.
A large number of police officers was overseeing the march. - Sapa
Protesting residents pelt stones at cars
SAPA 27 January 2010
Residents of the Motsoaledi informal settlement pelted stones at cars
along the Chris Hani Baragwanath road in Soweto and set alight a VW Golf
on Wednesday in a protest over poor service delivery, police said.
Capt Lindiwe Mbatha said the residents, who reside near the Chris Hani
Baragwanath hospital, took to the streets at 3am, barricading the road
with debris, stones and burning tyres.
“They threw a burning tyre at one of the cars, damaging it... but it was
not completely burnt down,” she said.
No one was injured in the incident and police were monitoring the situation.
“Metro police officers and firefighters are also at the scene for any
eventualities,” she said.
'Let's burn him, he is a police officer'
Solly Maphumulo (The Star) 28 January 2010
A number of vehicles - including one of The Star's - had their windows
shattered, and a bus and a car were torched when service delivery
protests in Soweto turned violent.
Residents of the Motsoaledi informal settlement, next to Chris
Hani-Baragwanath Hospital, turned the busy Chris Hani Road into a no-go
area during their protest yesterday morning.
Residents were demanding free electricity and houses. They turned their
anger on motorists using the busy road.
The back window of The Star's vehicle was smashed by the protesters.
'What these people are doing is wrong'
For about 10 minutes the protesters pelted some vehicles with stones and
blocked the road. Even taxi drivers panicked.
"What these people are doing is wrong. Police must fire rubber bullets,"
said a taxi driver as he swerved to get away.
Young and old, including women, ran and placed burning tyres on the
road, causing traffic congestion. Protesters ran for cover when police
emerged and fired rubber bullets at them. Some protesters were arrested.
Some of them were kicked and pushed before being put into a police
Residents held placards reading "Free electricity".
'I am so scared'
Nomsa Chauke was unable to go to school on the day she was to write an
"I am so scared. I do not know what is wrong with these people. The
protest started at 2am and we were not able to go to school," she said
Speaking to The Star at the scene, Johannes Mangwana said he had tried
to speed away when angry protesters surrounded his car and wanted to set
it alight. Mangwana, a security guard, was on his way to work at about
3.30am when he was attacked by protesters who mistook him for a police
They protesters stopped him and tried to pull him out of his car.
"They were shouting 'Let's burn him, he is a police officer'.
Luckily other protesters realised I was a security guard," said
Mangwana, who managed to drive away.
The protesters pelted his car with stones and three of his car's windows
The situation remained tense for several hours, with protesters still
burning tyres while police, occasionally firing rubber bullets to
disperse them, escorted taxis and other vehicles.
Joburg metro police spokeswoman Inspector Edna Mamonyane said about 25
people were arrested.
"Things got out of hand at the protest and they had to bring in more
manpower to deal with the situation.
"A stretch of Chris Hani Road had to be closed this morning, but we have
since reopened it."
A resident, Beauty Mphalala, has been living in the area since 1993. In
1996, she applied for an RDP house.
She said the residents had a meeting on Tuesday afternoon.
"That's where they decided to embark on a protest to highlight our
concerns," Mphalala said.
In the early hours of yesterday morning, residents went from house to
house telling people to join the protest. By 2am they had already
barricaded the roads in the settlement.
The Motsoaledi Concerned Residents issued a statement saying they had
taken a decision to conduct militant protests with the aim of disrupting
the economic flow in Soweto "because that is how these big politicians
take notice and come to respond to service delivery issues".
A crisis of dignity - 5 humiliating years later
TimesLive 31 January 2010
The humiliating ritual has become a way of life for the 19-year-old, who
lives in a shack with her parents in a section of the sprawling township
of Khayelitsha in Cape Town.
There are no toilets for the hundreds of families crammed into the
shantytown known as QQ section.
Those who need to relieve themselves can beg to use a neighbour's toilet
in exchange for some form of payment, use a plastic bucket in their own
shack, go to the toilet in the bush or join long queues to use one of
four communal toilets in another section.
The Sunday Times discovered the plight of Mdibaniso and her neighbours
five years ago - she was then aged 13 - during turbulent protests over
poor service delivery in the then ANC-run city and province. The young
teen was reduced to tears by the filthy task.
Today the people of QQ section still face a crisis of dignity - under a
city and province now run by the DA.
Minister of human settlements Tokyo Sexwale shed light on what was
fuelling the crisis when he told MPs in parliament this week that the
number of informal settlements in the country had soared from about 300
in 1994 to more than 2600 .
"Millions of our people are squatting ... It's a disaster in our
country, it's Haiti every day," he told the portfolio committee on human
Another toilet crisis in Khayelitsha made headlines this week after the
ANC Youth League accused the DA of violating people's rights in nearby
Makhaza. There, the city built more than 1000 toilets for residents on
condition they erected their own walls around them. The furore has led
to a probe by the Human Rights Commission.
But Mdibaniso said this week that having a toilet without walls would be
better than nothing at all. "Things are much better in the rural areas
where one will have a tap and a (pit latrine) toilet in the yard," she said.
Mzonke Poni, a housing activist with Abahlali Basemjondolo - a community
group fighting for better housing - described the situation in QQ
section as a gross violation of human rights.
"I've heard of incidents where women have been raped when either
crossing the N2 to relieve themselves or walking to beg for the use of a
toilet in another section," Poni said.
Said Mdibaniso: "When (neighbours) tell you that their toilets are
blocked, you have no option but to use a bucket. If your house is in a
dense area where there is no gap between the houses, the bucket will
have to be used inside the house.
"One then has to walk with a full bucket to dump it in a drain along
Lansdowne Road. It becomes a disaster when the drains are blocked," she
She said it was difficult to take the 15-minute walk across a bridge
over the N2 freeway to conduct one's ablutions in what was once an open
field, because of rapidly expanding shacks.
There are four communal toilets in a nearby section of the township, but
Mdibaniso said there were long queues from dawn of people too afraid to
relieve themselves outside at night.
City of Cape Town spokesman Kylie Hatton said authorities had wanted to
provide portable toilets in QQ Section but residents rejected them
because they wanted to be moved away to "formal erven and receive
houses". She said 4000 rented chemical toilets had been placed in areas
around the city to ease the ablutions crisis.
"The housing backlog is estimated at 400000 households," said Hatton.
Mdibaniso said: "What I want is for us to be moved from this place to a
place where there is space so that we can get access to water, a working
toilet and electricity."
Vuyelwa Cogwana, a squatter in Makhaza, where the city erected the
controversial open-air toilets, said: "I have been moved three times in
three years. I cannot build walls around that toilet or use it because
this piece of land is not mine. The owner may move in tomorrow and what
would happen to the material I've used?"
The toilets at Makhaza, most of which have been shielded from public
view by residents, are part of the city's informal-settlement upgrading
There are nearly 4000 bucket toilets still in use in and around the city
of Cape Town.
According to the Department of Water Affairs, over three million
families and 828 schools in the country have no access to basic sanitation.
TUT students evicted
Sapa 30 January 2010
Tshwane University of Technology students, who were in contravention of
a court order, were evicted from the Soshanguve campus on Saturday.
University spokesman Gilbert Mokwatedi said police and security
officials had to control the exit of about 400 remaining students from
the campus on Saturday morning.
"The security team had to use crowd control measures...like teargas...
but there are no injuries at all."
His comments came in the wake of accusations by Pan Africanist Movement
of Azania spokesman Vusi Mahangu that the students were being "brutally
attacked" in an effort to make them leave.
"Students at TUT Soshanguve are brutally attacked and assaulted by drunk
bouncers and reactionary police because they resisted to be evicted from
the campus," he said on Saturday afternoon.
However, Mokwatedi said that the students' eviction followed a number of
interventions aimed at cooling the situation after violent protests this
On Thursday the university obtained a court interdict against certain
members of the student organisation - the Pan Africanist Movement of Azania.
The executive management committee closed the campus indefinitely,
citing lawlessness, hooliganism, alcohol and drug abuse.
Subsequently, hundreds of students were ordered to vacate the
institution's premises on Thursday afternoon and student representative
council members were suspended, along with political activities on the
Mokwatedi said that later on Thursday the university decided to show
"compassion" for students who came from far away and allowed them to
stay overnight in their residences.
On Friday, about 400 students residing at the campus remained.
The university decided that a check would need to be conducted on these
students to make sure they were genuine.
"We are getting reports that there are criminal elements on campus
masquerading as real students," said Mokwatedi.
"We requested proof to show they are registered students and to show
proof that they are allowed to stay in residences."
The university also printed out the list of students still waiting for
possible residence allocation.
Mokwatedi said that some of the students encouraged the rest not to
follow the procedure.
"We never got any co-operation at all. Ultimately we had to revert back
to our decision...that they are also requested to leave campus."
He said police and the university's security services were on campus on
Saturday to facilitate the eviction of the remaining students.
Police Captain Lucas Sithole said police were closely watching the
He said some students had thrown stones from a distance, but that there
were no injuries.
On Wednesday night, a student was injured and hospitalised during
clashes between students affiliated to different political parties. - Sapa
Police remain on guard at TUT
Police said they will not allow students to return to the Tshwane
University of Technology’s Soshanguve campus following renewed protests
at the campus.
TUT students began demonstrating again on Saturday over poor services.
The facility then shut it gates until further notice.
Police evicted the remaining students from the campus grounds on Saturday.
The police’s Lucas Sithole said: “Our presence will be continued at the
campus, and we will always be there to make sure that the property and
people are safe.”
(Edited by Deshnee Subramany)
Denosa slams attack on protesting student nurses
Sapa 29 January 2010
THE attack on student nurses who were “protesting peacefully” at the
Western Cape College of Nursing must be investigated, the Democratic
Nursing Organisation of South Africa said yesterday.
Denosa said the students’ demands were justified and it was their
democratic right to protest.
“The management of the Western Cape College of Nursing, Cape Peninsula
University of Technology and the Western Cape provincial government must
urgently meet with the student leaders in order to address the issues
raised, instead of cowardly deploying monsters to attack citizens who
are genuinely exercising their democratic right,” Denosa said in a
Three student nurses were injured when police fired stun grenades and
rubber bullets at the protesting students on Wednesday.
Police were called in to defuse the situation at the college when a
standoff between students and security guards turned ugly. Students
shattered windows, pelted the guards with stones and sprayed them with
water from a fire hose, Inspector November Filander said on Wednesday.
Five security guards sustained minor injuries when the students attacked
them. Nine nursing students were arrested and were expected to appear in
the Athlone magistrate’s court yesterday.
The students boycotted classes on Monday, calling on management and the
Department of Health to revise the hours they worked during in-service
training and for more supervision when they did their training. – Sapa
Protestors burn down homes in Soshanguve
Sapa 29 January 2010
Angry Soshanguve community members burnt down the houses of two suspects
in the Masego Kgomo murder case, the City of Tshwane said.
Spokeswoman Console Tleane said two houses in Block F West, Soshanguve,
were torched on Thursday around 10.30pm.
He said the occupants of the houses had fled and no one was injured
during the incident.
"The third house was saved through the intervention of the Tshwane Metro
Police and the SAPS," said Tleane.
One man was arrested for public violence.
Tleane said community members were angry at the men who were suspected
to have killed the 11-year-old girl, whose badly decomposed and
apparently mutilated body was found hidden in a dense clump of bushes
near her Soshanguve home on January 8, after she had gone missing.
Tleane said three men were arrested for her murder and were alleged to
have cut of some off parts of her body, possibly for muti.
They were also suspects in the murder cases of three other young
The men are expected to appear in the Soshanguve Magistrate's Court on
Media groups protest at World Cup ‘rules’
Daily Dispatch 30 January 2010
THREE of SA’s media houses have sent a submission to Fifa saying the
conditions it is imposing on journalists during the 2010 World Cup are
Avusa Media Limited – the Dispatch’s parent company – Independent
Newspapers and Media 24 say Fifa restrictions “unjustifiably restrict
the media’s ability to report critically on the Fifa World Cup and any
related or ancillary topics”.
The submission states that Fifa “holds a monopoly over all matters
pertaining to the 2010 Fifa World Cup”. Because of the monopoly, the
media has no choice but to agree to the terms and conditions.
Fifa’s terms and conditions include a clause that news organisations
cannot harm the reputation of the World Cup.
But the groups submit that under SA law “a prior restraint on
publication” is unlawful, as critique is protected when it is judged
fair comment or reasonable on the basis that it is true and in the
They also believe accreditation terms are “procedurally unfair, unlawful
Local organising committee spokesperson Rich Mkhondo said they were
looking at the submission. — Sapa
South Africa: Victory for union as strike ends at Sun
27 January 2010
SACCAWU.We have just received a statement from the South African union
SACCAWU announcing the end of a long and bitter strike at Sun
The union specifically notes the importance of the online campaign waged
by LabourStart -- a campaign that more than 4,000 of you signed up to.
They write: "The morale of the striking workers was further boosted by
the international solidarity and *the Labour Start campaign that saw
thousands of letters from unionists and the public in general from all
over the world, sent to the management of Sun International*. SACCAWU
and the striking workers wish to acknowledge and express our gratitude
for the solidarity, on the picket-line, in the communities and
internationally, that played an important role in keeping the unity and
building the morale of striking workers throughout the strike."
For details of the settlement reached, click here