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South African protest News 25 July - 4 August 2013 (2013) South African protest News 25 July - 4 August 2013.  : -.

'Gang violence destroying future youth'
Eye Witness News 3 August 2013

CAPE TOWN - Some Manenberg residents at the weekend said gang violence is destroying the future of the youth in their community.

Community members took to the streets on Saturday to protest the ongoing gang violence after several people were killed in recent weeks.

There’s been a wave of gang related violence, specifically in gang infested areas like Manenberg and Heideveld in recent months.

One resident, Amelia Kiewiets said they have had enough.

“In most cases the community gives in to the shootings and as a person in this community I say we must turn it around. We must be able to say we’re not afraid.”


On Friday Western Cape Social Development MEC Albert Fritz on pledged more funding and called on non-governmental organisations to intensify their programmes in Manenberg.

The MEC was visiting the crime-riddled suburb, which he happened to grow up in.

He promised to give a local trauma centre more funding adding that a trauma counselling service in Manenberg is critically needed.

“Teachers and children in Manenberg are traumatised. We and other stakeholders that specialise in trauma counselling have agreed to roll out an intervention programme.”


The police's Thembinkosi Kinana said on Friday they have opened a case of attempted murder after a man was shot and wounded in the area.

“The man was rushed to a nearby hospital for medical treatment.”

Several communities in the province have been marred by gang violence in recent months.

Over 30 people, including children, have been caught in gang crossfire.

In 2012, Premier Helen Zille wrote to the Presidency requesting that the army be deployed to gang infested areas but her request was turned down.

Community attack cops: Verulam SAPS officers attacked by community.
Krishnee Naidoo 30 July 2013

Two Verulam SAPS officers came under the attack of the community in Zwelisha after they received a call about a truck that crashed into a building on Sunday.

The truck was reportedly stolen from the Phoenix area. It is believed that the driver fled the scene succeeding the crash. A local Verulam security company response unit, Trans Natal Flying Squad, who was passing on route, saw the commotion and stopped to render attendance.

Director of the company, Suren Balram said, “Upon our arrival at the scene, we saw that the officers were being attacked by the crowd. Members of the community were incensed by the damage done to the building and demanded that they be compensated an amount of R5, 000 before they allowed the truck to leave the premises. The officers were pelted with stones and other objects and suffered injuries. Back- up had to be called to maintain calm and forcefully remove the truck.”

Balram said that the driver fled with the keys and a breakdown service had to be engaged to move the vehicle. The injured officers had to seek medical treatment.

Verulam SAPS communications officer, W/O Mandla Khumalo could not be reached for comment.

Arrests are an act of intimidation
Sipho Siso 2 August 2013

ALEXANDRA - Riverpark protesters who were arrested for an illegal gathering are furious that they have been intimidated into stopping their protest.

Riverpark Residents Association chairperson Tsietsi Kungoane said there were other avenues they would be exploring to advance their cause apart from the protests.

He would not divulge their plans at this stage, but said they wanted the intervention of the Premier in the matter. "We feel very humiliated and terrorised by the arrest. I thought we live in a democratic country," Kungoane said.

The arrests came shortly after the residents boycotted a meeting at the East Bank Hall called by their Ward 81 councillor Mokgadi Radebe to address the issues around the protest, which include the installation of the smart meters.

Residents claim the meters chow too much electricity as compared to the previous ones and they claim these meters constantly blow off and catch fire.

A meeting was called at the East Bank Hall to explain the outcomes of the meter assessments conducted by the MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services Matshidiso Mfikoe.

"We boycotted the meeting as we felt offended by it being held in East Bank. Residents felt the meeting should have been held in Riverpark. We informed our councillor about the decision," he said.

According to Kungoane residents were told the new meters were tamperproof. However, he said they don't share the same sentiments as they allege some people employed by City Power were tampering with the meters.

The residents have since lost faith in their councillor and claimed this will affect voting patterns in the upcoming provincial and national elections. Kungoane said residents were now calling for the resignation of their councillor.

"In the next municipal elections in 2018, residents will choose a councillor of their choice to represent them," Kungoane said.

Meanwhile, councillor Mokgadi has hit back at Kungoane, accusing him of being "a devious character who is using innocent people to achieve his own selfish ends".

She claimed Kungoane had more than 20 shacks in his yard and feared that once the smart meters were installed, he would no longer benefit from free electricity for which he has been charging his tenants.

"I have been doing my job diligently for all these years and some people just emerge from nowhere and claim that I am not performing.

"If a clique of people feel I am not performing, then tough luck for them. Tsietsi has his own agenda and is using these poor people to achieve his own selfish interests," Radebe said.

NUMSA Wednesday July 31, 2013

The Shopstewards of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) working at the monopoly and state-owned power utility ESKOM will hold a peaceful picket, outside the offices of Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), in Johannesburg’s CBD (28 Harrison Street), tomorrow Thursday August 1, 2013, as from 9h00am.

The picket forms part of our organizational strategy to exert pressure to ESKOM to concede to our collective bargaining demands and improved conditions of employment for our members.

ESKOM has deferred a dispute with the CCMA, after wage negotiations collapsed and deadlock was reached. The ESKOM’s bully-boys want to impose a 5.6% wage offer and a collective bargaining agreement for a period of 5 years. Both these offers have been totally rejected by our members in various ESKOM plants.

“Eskom must dig-deep from its coffers and give workers a living wage. Our members are heavily feeling the economic burden of taking care of their extended families and relatives because of the scandalous high unemployment rate and skyrocketing cost of living in modern day capitalist South Africa”, says Numsa Basic Metals and Energy Sector Coordinator Stephen Nhlapo

“They (Eskom) have a responsibility to adhere to the electoral commitments of the ANC government. Our government promised to deliver decent jobs and sustainable livelihoods for the workers and the poor. They can be no decent jobs and sustainable livelihoods without a living wage. Not unless Eskom wants to retain and reproduce old apartheid income inequalities”, said Nhlapo

The details of the picket are as follows:

DATE: Thursday August 01, 2013
TIME: 09H00am
VENUE: CCMA Offices, 28 Harrison Street, Johannesburg, Gauteng

Members of the media are hereby invited to attend and report.

Stephen Nhlapo
National Sector Coordinator: Basic Metals and Energy
Mobile: 0836326986

SACCAWU press release on ongoing industrial action in the sector
SACCAWU 1 August 2013

Dear All, find below SACCAWU press release and a statement with HICRAWU at the end who is joining SACCAWU in the industrial action
Statement for Press briefing on various strikes led by SACCAWU.

Currently SACCAWU is involved in two strikes in which close to 400 workers are participating, while further two strikes are scheduled to commence on the 1st and the 2nd of August respectively. Of the two coming strikes, the first involve more than 200 workers, while the second cover a Pretoria Bargaining Council with more than 15 000 workers and 10 000 of which are SACCAWU members.

Unlike suggestions by some analysts, that workers turn to strikes too easily in South Africa, or that workers’ demands are unreasonable, we believe this not to be the case. For workers to go on strike is not an easy decision. This decision usually is the consequence of long processes of negotiations with management, exploring all legal routes to resolve such disputes. Only if this process does not yield desired results will workers consider the option of industrial action. And even then a lengthy legal process set out in our labour legislation is followed before we can and do embark on strike action. On top of that workers always have to and do contemplate and weigh-up the implications for themselves, their families and other dependents on their meagre income before they conclude whether to strike or not. Thus the decision to strike is really the last measure considered by workers in the face of intransigent bosses. Often the strikes for wages are desperate measure to respond to pressures faced by workers and their families due to the erosion of their living standards.

Today South Africa is seen as one of the most unequal societies in the world and this inequality is constantly growing. This is coupled with the high unemployment levels in the country, especially with such a weak social protection system as we have places enormous pressures on the working poor in general and our constituency in particular which are one of the lowest earning sectors in the economy after domestic and farm labour. This pressure on the employed is further be-devilled by the parasitic labour broking system which drives more and larger numbers of workers especially women who are placed into precarious employment contracts that in turn erode benefits and drive wages down, make them more vulnerable and worsen the levels of poverty. This is coupled with the risings costs of transport, food, health, clothes and other basic needs which places further pressures on workers and often give them know alternative but to resort to their last and only weapon of withdrawing their only power in a form of labour.

At the same time and as has been demonstrated in numerous studies, reports and comments by various researchers and analysts, the bosses are having it good. They live lavish lives, paying themselves extraordinary high salaries, bonuses’ and perks irrespective of whether or not their companies perform well. This skewed state of affairs and the bosses’ lavish lifestyles are often flaunted with little regard in the face of the poor.

It is for this reason that COSATU Collective Bargaining Conference saw the need for mandatory centralised bargaining, legislated minimum wages and the ban of labour-broking and SACCAWU was the main supporter of these resolutions.

This state of affairs has resulted into general increase in strikes over the last year or so, cutting across industries, from mining to agriculture, including the sector we organise in wholesale, retail and hospitality. We believe the workers demands are legitimate and we are fully behind these strikes taking place currently.

Finally, as was indicated earlier, the taking of strike action is the last resort for workers and these current strikes are taking place as a result of bosses generally refusing to consider or shift from, what in the view of the Union and our members are unreasonable and unacceptable wage offers.

Current strikes

Jack Snacks
This is a factory based in Nelspruit employing mainly women engaged in processing and distribution of Snacks, Pops, Maize & Corn Naks and Puffs. At this establishment there are no fix hours, nor any minimum wages. While we have secured a minimum of 180 hours per month in the negotiations prior to the strike, this was subsequently withdrawn by the Company after we deadlocked on wages and workers embarked on protected strike action. This strike started on 15 July 2013, and is still continuing with the Company now threatening retrenchments in an attempt to break the unity of striking workers. The workers demand R3 500 minimum wage, and as was indicated earlier, currently there is no minimum wage. On average workers here earn between R1 800 and R2 000 per month depending on the amount of hours they are scheduled to work. Further, the workers also demand a guaranteed 180 hours per month, initially agreed upon but since the strike as a way to threaten, intimidate and force workers back to these extreme exploitative conditions have been withdrawn by the Company. The Company, in an attempt to break the strike has now threatened workers with retrenchments instead of meeting with the Union to seek a resolution to the dispute. The more than 110 workers remain strong and united continue with the strike action and we call on the public in general to support these workers.

contact Mpumalanga Regional Secretary
Patrick Skosana: 0823368173

Nola Food Corp
This is a factory based in Roodepoort where more than 200 of SACCAWU members has been on strike since the 25th of July and currently remain on strike. This Company processes and distributes cooking oil, margarine, rusks and pet food amongst others. Workers initially demanded an increase of 10.5% across the board, while management only offered 6.5%. In a subsequent meeting during the strike held on the 29th of July, in an attempt to break the deadlock and resolve this dispute, workers revised their offer to 8.5% across the board. This was rejected by the Company which has not shifted from its initial offer of 6.5%. After consulting with member again, striking workers view the attitude of management as extremely intransigent despite attempts by the Union to resolve the dispute and decided to continue the strike. The workers remain united and stand firmly behind their demands.

In both these strikes what is clearly demonstrated is the hostility and intransigence on the side of management and the complete insensitivity towards the plight of their workers that is and has always been the source of the enormous profits they make.
contact Wits Regional Secretary
S Majova: 0823367118

Nedan Oil
This factory is based in Mokopane, in the Limpopo province. More than 200 of SACCAWU members will embark on strike action from the 1st of August. Workers demand an increase of R1550 for the lowest earning employment category to R1 100 for the highest earning category. This figures will bring the average wage in this factory slightly more than R5 000 per month. Management have remained at their position of 8% increase for all categories which will bring the lowest and average to about R4 000. The strike will be regularly assessed throughout.

contact Northern Region Regional Secretary
Cyril Dibakwana: 0823368382
Richard Matjila: 0823368436

Pretoria Bargaining Council for Food retail, Restaurants, Catering and Allied Trades
This Bargaining Council cover more than 15 000 workers in its scope, with SACCAWU having 10 000 members. There are three Unions representing workers covered by this Council. These Unions have formed a joint co-ordinating committee that will lead and guide this strike and all three Unions will be participating in this strike including other unions which do not participate in this Bargaining Council. This Bargaining Council covers about 200 establishments with outlets like; Wimpy, Nando’s, Pie City, Romans Pizzas, Fedics, King Pie, Chicken Licken, KFC, Compass group and others. In the run-up to the decision to strike regular meetings were called and after the deadlock at the Council and on obtaining of a certificate to embark on protected industrial action the workers decided to embark on a protest march in Pretoria on Friday the 2nd of August 2013. The march will start at 11h00, from Schubart park at the corner of Schubart and Proes streets and proceeds to the Bargaining Council situated in MBA building in Church street, between Beatrix and Hamilton streets where the memorandum of demands will be delivered at 13h00. Three unions will convene an assessment meeting after this march and decide on a wayforward depending on the attitude of the employers. It is expected that the majority of our members and those of the other Unions will join this action. In this sector, the minimum wage is R2 169, while the average wage is R2 509. Workers demand a 12% adjustment on the current minimum salaries and 10% across the board increase for those earning above the current minimum salaries. Other key demands placed before the Council and that form part of this dispute are; improved hourly rates for Sunday and Public Holiday work, paid sick leave for casual workers, annual bonus and family responsibility leave, and the scrapping of independent waitron category, the abolishment of using labour broking and the conversion of these category of work to full-time position.

contact Northern Region Regional Secretary
Cyril Dibakwana:0823368382
Richard Matjila: 0823368436

In conclusion, given the general onslaught on workers standard of living through depressing of wages in the context of the continued rising costs of living faced by the workers and their dependants, we believe that all these strike and the demands are not only reasonable, but also legitimate and we call on the public in general to support these striking workers.
Thank you
Mike Abrahams


HICRAWU was admitted as a party to the bargaining council on the 2 April 2013 and it immediately joined forces with both SACCAWU and CCRAWUSA in substantive negotiations for the industry within the scope of the council.
These negotiations started at the beginning of APRIL until the conciliation process which failed to resolve the dispute on the 11 July 2013. Amongst the core demands are:

• 12% minimum wage increase
• 10% across the board increase
• 10% big employer
• R5.00 per hour night shift allowance
• Sunday work to be pay at time and half

While these demands do not represent the entire demands of the members, the employer parties have displayed a lack of interest in the process and their attitude towards the negotiations is that of lack of commitment.

The catering workers are amongst the lowest paid in the country and their demands are not even for a living wage but for a minimum wage.
The employers had since the start of the negotiations claimed to have no mandate to negotiate on other issues. They are only prepared to negotiate on five items being ;

• Duration of agreement
• Minimum wage
• Across the board
• Transport allowance
• Family responsibility leave

You then ask yourself what would it cost employers if they were to consider the unions proposal of not employing illegal foreigners. They say they have no mandate or offer.
Workers are saying they want their employers to listen to their proposals and consider their proposals as basic demands.
For the 70 years of the bargaining council existence, workers falling under its jurisdiction had to endure suffering and exploitation. Employers cannot come to terms with the fact that workers patience had run out and that they are no longer prepared to generate profit while they get next to nothing .This had prompted the workers to consider other alternatives and in this instance resolved to march to the bargaining council offices to deliver a memorandum on the 2 August 2013.
Even before the strike/march starts, workers are facing threats of dismissals and intimidation.

By Martin Modise

NUMSA 31 July 2013

The Shopstewards of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) working at the monopoly and state-owned power utility ESKOM will hold a peaceful picket, outside the offices of Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), in Johannesburg’s CBD (28 Harrison Street), tomorrow Thursday August 1, 2013, as from 9h00am.

The picket forms part of our organizational strategy to exert pressure to ESKOM to concede to our collective bargaining demands and improved conditions of employment for our members.

ESKOM has deferred a dispute with the CCMA, after wage negotiations collapsed and deadlock was reached. The ESKOM’s bully-boys want to impose a 5.6% wage offer and a collective bargaining agreement for a period of 5 years. Both these offers have been totally rejected by our members in various ESKOM plants.

“Eskom must dig-deep from its coffers and give workers a living wage. Our members are heavily feeling the economic burden of taking care of their extended families and relatives because of the scandalous high unemployment rate and skyrocketing cost of living in modern day capitalist South Africa”, says Numsa Basic Metals and Energy Sector Coordinator Stephen Nhlapo

“They (Eskom) have a responsibility to adhere to the electoral commitments of the ANC government. Our government promised to deliver decent jobs and sustainable livelihoods for the workers and the poor. They can be no decent jobs and sustainable livelihoods without a living wage. Not unless Eskom wants to retain and reproduce old apartheid income inequalities”, said Nhlapo

The details of the picket are as follows:

DATE: Thursday August 01, 2013
TIME: 09H00am
VENUE: CCMA Offices, 28 Harrison Street, Johannesburg, Gauteng

Members of the media are hereby invited to attend and report.

Stephen Nhlapo
National Sector Coordinator: Basic Metals and Energy
Mobile: 0836326986

SACCAWU 1 August 2013

Members of the South African Commercial Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU) in KZN employed by UMlazi Mega Spar in Durban Local and Richmond Spar in Pietermaritzburg Local are currently embarking on wage strikes as a result of the refusal by both Spar stores to meet workers demands.
Both strikes commenced today the 1st August 2013 and shall continue until these companies meet the workers demands.

At UMlazi Mega Spar the issues in dispute are;

• ATB increase of R350
• Two weeks Guranteed 13th Cheque
• SACCAWU National Provident

Whilst at Richmond Spar the issues in dispute are;

• ATB of R260 or 8% whichever is greater
• Adjustment to Sectoral Determination for those earning below
• SACCAWU National Provident Fund
• Proper categories
• 25% Bonus
• Guaranteed 27 Hours for Casual employees

It should be noted that the above demands are for settlement purposes, however both these Spar Stores have totally refused to meet same despite our attempt to avoid strikes.

UMlazi Mega Spar has even tried to interdict our strike which was rejected by the Labour Court and we commend the Judge for doing justice to workers who are earning such low wages.

At Richmond Spar whilst our intention was a one day strike the company has resorted to lock us out and as a result the strike shall continue until the company meet our demands.

We therefore urge communities in both Richmond and UMlazi to support our members on their struggle to restore their dignity. We further urge all COSATU, ANC and SANCO members in these two areas to be with members during the period of these strikes as “AN INJURY TO ONE IS AN INJURY TO ALL”.
Mike Abrahams

VIDEO: Striking workers lock mayor in, wave pink panties in protest
Lucia Selepe and Liesl Pohl 25 July 2013

Striking workers, all members of the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) locked the gates to the municipal offices in Modjadjiskloof demanding a minimum salary increase of 6.84% to be implemented.

A message for the Greater Letaba municipal manager, Glory Mashaba written on a pair of pink panties on Thursday.

The strike started on Wednesday at approximately 15:00 with 169 SAMWU members locking senior officials including the municipal manager Glory Mashaba and the mayor City Modjadji in on the premises until about 21:00.

The workers refuse to go back to work until their salaries are adjusted, bringing services at the municipality to a standstill.

SAMWU secretary, Sello Mononela said the worker’s minimum salary increase should have been implemented on July 1 and the municipality failed to do that.

'This shows plain incompetency at the highest degree. They even fail to explain why they haven't implemented the decision taken on national level. To make the matters worse is that there was council meeting early in the week but the issue was not on the agenda,' said Mononela.

If you cannot view the video click here

Municipal spokesperson, Lovers Maenetje said the management, council members and SAMWU are going to meet to come to an agreement.

'Hopefully by 13:00 they would've come to an agreement which will end the strike. We are pleading with the striking workers to not hold services up for the people. As much as they have a right to strike they must not disturb services by locking the gates,' said Maenetje.

Angry parents lock school gates
Cheryllee Hannam (Look Local) 30 July 2013

Two weeks before trial examinations, Westenburg Secondary School learners and teachers were sent home after angry parents locked the school gates yesterday (Monday) morning.

POLOKWANE - Two weeks before trial examinations, Westenburg Secondary School learners and teachers were sent home after angry parents locked the school gates yesterday (Monday) morning.

The parents decided to take this drastic step to force action regarding the dire circumstances at the the school, for which they blame the principal, Petrus Monyama.

"There is no electricity at the school, the telephone has been disconnected and the toilets are not working because they are blocked.

"These are unacceptable conditions in which our children have to learn," one parent said.
Another concern among the parents, is that there are not enough Afrikaans speaking teachers to teach the Afrikaans speaking learners.

"This school is here for the children of Westenburg. Our children are Afrikaans, but there are no teachers for the children who are supposed to benefit from the school.

"The principal wants Afrikaans to die at this school. We must put a stop to it, starting ríght now," a furious mother said.

Some gr. 12 learners said even though they were taking Afrikaans as their first language, some of their subjects were taught in English because there were no Afrikaans-speaking teachers to teach them.

"We are taught maths in Afrikaans, but at exam time the question papers are in English and then we are confused by the terminology and our marks suffer.

"Business studies we are taught in English but at exam time our question papers are in Afrikaans, again very con-fusing. It worries us, because this confusion might cause us to fail the year," learners said.

A concerned father said the children are the ones suffering the most. "At this rate our children will never become the next doctors, lawyers, accountants, and so forth. So we plead with the department of education to do something before it is too late for our children," he said.

Before sending the learners who were standing outside the school home, Monyama told them that the school governing body (SGB) and some parents did not want him to be principal. He assured the learners that he was not going any-where and would remain the school principal. "Go home and tell your parents as soon as the matter is resolved you will come back to school," he said.

Thereafter he had a meeting with the teachers. "There are some of you (teachers) that are happy with the situation today. But I am going nowhere, only death and the department will get me to leave this school. Go home, the department will contact you when the problem is resolved," Monyama told them.
On Saturday afternoon the SGB held a meeting with parents at the school.

The SGB explained to the parents that they were just as frustrated with the circum-stances at the school and even more with the department, that was, according to them, doing nothing to address the issues at the school.
The SGB will be meeting with the head of the department of education later this week to discuss the problems at the school as well as to find a way forward.

The SGB will then give parents feedback at the school at 15:00 on Saturday.

Education spokesperson, Pat Kgomo, said a meeting between the department and everyone involved to discuss all the matters at hand would be held immediately. "After the meeting, the department will be able to give comment," Kgomo said.

Zimbabweans chain themselves to Mandela statue
David Jenkin 30 July 2013

SANDTON - Three protestors chained themselves to Madiba's statue at Nelson Mandela Square on Tuesday to voice their concerns about upcoming presidential election in Zimbabwe.

Zimbabweans go to the polls on 31 July. According to Reuters, the Zimbabwean exiles argued that despite the imminent election, their country was not free.

The three wrapped a thick silver chain around their necks at the base of the 2.7 metre tall statue. The spectacle ended quickly after security staff requested them to leave.

Riot police have reportedly been deployed in Zimbabwe on 30 July, the eve of the election. An election in 2008 was marred by political violence.

NUM to march to Sibanye mine
IOL News 31 July 2013

Johannesburg - Miners intended to march to Sibanye gold mine on Wednesday afternoon to present a memorandum of pay demands, the National Union of Mineworkers said.

“The march precedes a rolling mass action that is likely... should the Chamber of Mines fail to accede to the demands of the workforce,” NUM general secretary Frans Baleni said in a statement.

The demands included a monthly R7000 basic salary for surface workers, R8000 a month for underground workers, and a 15 percent increase for all other categories.

The march would begin at 4pm in Westonaria and proceed to the mine's offices, also in Westonaria.

NUM members march at Arnot mine
NUM 31 August 2013

Thousands of miners affiliated to the National Union of Mineworkers will this afternoon march at Arnot mine outside Middleburg in Mpumalanga to present a memorandum of demands to Exxaro. The workers demand the equalization of bonuses as per the Chamber of Mines agreement of 1996 and a plethora of other issues. The march will begin at the mine at 16h00 and proceed to the company’s main offices where a memorandum will be delivered. “We also demand that the company should resolve the issues relating to basic salary as opposed to hourly rates. Whilst we appreciate that the matter is currently before a commissioner, we call on the company to resolve all these as a matter of urgency” says Mxolisi Hoboyi, a Branch Secretary at Arnot. The workers further demand that the company should address the issue of long service awards as per agreement.

Mineworkers will gather at the entrance of the mine and proceed to the offices at 16H00.

For further information, please contact Mxolisi Hoboyi at 0825185396.

Lesiba Seshoka (Spokesman)
National Union of Mineworkers
7 Rissik Street
Cnr Frederick

Tel: 011 377 2047
Cell: 082 803 6719

Jobs on merit, not colour – protesters
IOL News 30 July 2013

Not white enough before 1994 and not black enough after, was the message delivered by a group of angry coloured protesters in front of Cape Town’s Labour Court at lunch time on Monday.

Inside the building, Judge Hilary Rabkin-Naicker presided over the resumption of an affirmative action case, brought by trade union Solidarity against the Western Cape’s correctional services department.

Outside, in Loop Street, a group of about 30 protesters called loudly for people to be employed on the basis of merit, not colour.

They held up posters with the messages “Employment Equity is Racism”, “Staan Saam Bruin Mense” (Stand together, brown people), and “Job Reservation is Apartheid”.

Many of the protesters wore orange, sleeveless safety vests of the type worn by construction workers. Written on the front were the words “Post 94, Not Black Enough”, and on the back, “Pre 94, Not White Enough”.

Solidarity is representing Linda-Jean Fortuin, Christopher February, André Jonkers, Geo-nita Baartman, Pieter Davids, Derick Wehr, Jan Kotze, Desiree Merkeur, Deidre Jordaan and Teresa Abrahams – nine of the department’s employees and one job applicant. They say they have been unfairly discriminated against when applying for promotions because they are coloured.

The department has argued that it takes national and not provincial demographics into account regarding jobs and that they applied this in accordance with the law.

The matter resumed on Monday after a two-month postponement.

In the interim both parties were expected to reach an agreement on the matter.

Martin Brassey SC, for Solidarity, told the court that attempts to reach an agreement “proved unfruitful”.

The court heard that two posts advertised and applied for by two female employees had been scrapped.

In her testimony on Monday, Abrahams, said she was “strongly recommended” for a post in the department’s Breede River management area.

But after an interview for the job in 2011, she was convinced she was not selected “purely because of my colour”.

Marumo Moerane SC, for the department, told her that she was not appointed because the post had been abolished.

Community burns down house
Kevin van der List 25 July 2013

Community members suspected that the woman murdered her husband, Lepitsi Mohlala (56), after they apparently heard the couple arguing some days earlier.

On July 17, police were called to the house after the community marched on it and threatened to burn it down.

Stones were thrown at police on their arrival and the tyres of one of their vehicles were slashed.

‘‘The police managed to calm the public, who then informed them that they wanted the officers to open the doors by force, as the door of one of the rooms was locked,’’ said Crystal Park SAPS media liaison officer Tryna Maritz.

The community returned on July 18 to burn down the house.

A family of eight, who lived in the house, were taken to a place of safety.

Crystal Park SAPS opened a case of a missing person and this is being investigated.
The missing man worked at Ebotse Golf Estate as a contractor, and has not been seen at work since his disappearance.

Anyone with information about the mans whereabouts can call Const Lerato Mopeli on 071 675 6752.

Midrand badly affected by Pikitup strike
Varushka Padayachi (Look Local) 26 July 2013

MIDRAND - An illegal strike by Pikitup employees has resulted in a huge backlog of rubbish that needed to be dealt with.

At the Pikitup depot on Church Street, rubbish was strewn just outside the gates, water from a burst pipe had collected in puddles in the driveway, and acrid smoke from a raging fire polluted the air.

Call centre agent Samuel Kgetedi stopped to view the billowing clouds of smoke coming out of the depot.

Kgetedi said he was used to the sight of the accumulating rubbish by now. "I drive past to go to work every day. It's terrible. And now the fire. The smoke can be inhaled by people driving or walking past. It's really bad," he said.

Midrand residents maintain they have suffered the brunt of the strike as it is one of the areas with a severe backlog. According to the Pikitup website, there were collections done over the weekend in which efforts were made to collect all refuse that could not fit into refuse bins.

However many residents are still sitting with heaps of uncollected rubbish.

Yvette Page confirmed that her rubbish had not been collected at her workplace or her home. She said, "I thought Pikitup was going to work around-the-clock to clear up their mess. My boss had to get a removal company to sort out the mess at work today and at home nobody's been either."

Pikitup spokesperson, Desiree Ntshingila, had the following to say about the problems experienced by Midrand residents: "We've been having a few challenges in the Midrand and Randburg areas with intimidation. Pikitup workers are being intimidated by illegal strikers. We are offering assistance where we can."

Asked why many areas were left to deal with growing piles of rubbish that weren't being cleared Ntshingila said, "We've now hired additional manpower and doing whatever we can to ensure that waste is cleared away as soon as possible. We are instituting clear-ups on Saturdays and Sundays and are deploying law enforcement to deal with the intimidation. We do appreciate the Midrand residents' patience and understanding in dealing with the backlog of litter."

Mass ride in protest against tolling
IOL News 29 July 2013

It would seem that Bikers Against E-Tolls had hit a nerve as several hundred riders turned out in miserable Cape winter weather for what the City of Cape Town has said was the first motorcycle protest ride for which it had granted a permit.

Tolls, whether manually or electronically extracted, have always been something of a sore point for bikers, as the vast majority of toll plazas across South Africa charge the same for a motorcycle as for a heavily-laden minibus taxi pulling a trailer.

But even the riders were themselves were taken aback at the depth of support for the protest ride, convened by Bikers Against e-Tolls under the auspices of the Motorcyclists Association of the Western Cape, as two (and three) wheelers of all shapes and sizes, from neat little scooters to racy-looking superbikes and imposing adventure tourers, rolled into the gathering point on the normally quiet Keizergracht in District 6.

Their riders ranged from teenagers to pensioners, mainstream club stalwarts to motorcycle riding instructors - some from as far away as Robertson, anxious to make the point that the proposed tolling of major access routes to the Cape Metropole will hit farm workers in the Boland as hard as it will impact lower-income city dwellers.

The ride was escorted by police and traffic services, with mayoral committee member for transport Brett Herron representing the City. MAWC spokesman Cedric Newton had nothing but praise for their marshalling, as SAPS and Traffic Services teamed up to close intersections and on-ramps along the route, ensuring the ride ran smoothly along the N2, the R300 and back along the N1 to the start point in District 6.

Nevertheless, it was the weather gods who had the last laugh, in typical Cape of Storms fashion. The rain held off for most of the ride but, just as the bikers were parking their machines back at the Keizergracht and taking off their helmets, the heavens opened, democratically drenching all the riders and marshals alike.

Youth League chases EFF off campus
Noni Mokati (IOL News )27 July 2013

Freedom Fighters (EFF) were chased away from the University of Johannesburg by ANC Youth League members - some wielding hockey sticks.

A tense stand-off ensued when EFF members tried to enter UJ’s Doornfontein campus to address students on financial exclusion and other matters.

This came as the government vowed to act if Malema and the EFF act on threats to seize farms – one of his election promises since launching his new party.

Malema said this week the EFF manifesto included the non-negotiable principles of land expropriation and nationalisation of mines, both without compensation.

“We are going to take this government and once we take it, we are not going to negotiate, we are going to take our land,” Malema said this week. “We are going to take it because it’s our land.”

But yesterday dozens of security guards and league members prevented the group, which included businessman and “Sushi King” Kenny Kunene, who arrived in a flashy BMW, from entering the premises. Malema was not seen at the university.

All were clad in the party’s signature red berets.

Those outside demanded they be let in, saying they had been given permission to host the events, but the guards would not relent. The EFF members began chanting anti-Zuma slogans.

“UJ is remotely controlled from Luthuli House,” Kunene said to applause and whistles.

“Amagwala (referring to the ANC as cowards) gave their lapdogs T-shirts to make noise. But these tactics will not discourage or weaken the spirit to establish EFF.”

He told the students that many of them graduated from varsity as chartered accountants and yet a minority of black accountants were placed in jobs by the CA board.

A handful of students in ANC shirts jeered at EFF members in songs. EFF members in turn shouted: “We will moer you.”

It was not clear whether Malema, the ousted youth league president, had been watching the commotion from his car but he was not seen on the scene. Soon afterwards students belonging to EFF ripped, tore and stomped on an ANC shirt.

UJ spokesman Herman Esterhuizen said the university did not cancel the event. “There was no application submitted to varsity management on time. Therefore this was an unscheduled event. It takes eight weeks for the university to approve application. We only received the relevant documents from the student body this week.”

He said that the EFF members who were already inside UJ were students who used their access cards to gain entry.

The EFF criticised UJ for denying the group access.

“UJ must be ashamed that it has joined the long queue of manipulated public institutions used to settle political scores by the ruling party,” spokesman Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said in a statement.

“We are not moved. If anything, the events of the University of Johannesburg, like others earlier this week in the Vaal and other areas across the country, only serve as proof that ZANC (Zuma-ANC) is intimidated and now they resort to cheap tricks of intimidation, manipulation and street gossip,” Ndlozi said.

Later, in Soweto, the EFF got the rousing welcome they were expecting at UJ.

A sea of red berets and caps greeted the media last night at Uncle Tom’s Community Hall in Orlando West.

Hundreds stood outside in long lines waiting to be accredited. They sang “we’re changing Zuma’s reign” and “when you’re a person and you support Zuma you’re crazy, you’re a fool”, in Sepedi.

By the time of going to press Malema had not arrived.

Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson said if Malema and EFF supporters occupied farms or agricultural land, action would be taken.

“There is no way we will allow people to sow discord in our farming communities for party-political gains,” she said.

She was reacting to the EFF’s founding manifesto, released on Thursday, in which it said that all land should be transferred, without compensation, to the state.

Joemat-Pettersson told Beeld that it was a misperception that all commercial farmers were white. Violence and farm murders had already traumatised rural communities. Anyone who encouraged illegal action on farms would face the full might of the law, she said.

Meanwhile, President Jacob Zuma took a swipe at the EFF yesterday and urged ANC supporters at Folweni, south of Durban, not to back new parties. He said voting for parties not in government would be like throwing away their rights.

“We are encouraging you to register and to know who to vote for because there are many people who are forming unknown political parties, claiming these parties will help people; this is a dream. They are dreaming because they are not in government and they are claiming they can do better for the people. They’ll never do anything because they’ll never be in government,” says Zuma.

This week Malema’s last property was sold for nearly R1.5 million at an auction in Limpopo on Tuesday. Earlier this year, Malema’s incomplete Sandown mansion was bought for R5.9m by Limpopo businessman Norman Tloubatla.

The EFF leader’s Schuilkraal farm in Polokwane was bought for R2.5m by Callie Calitz of Wencor Holdings. The farm had been seized by the Asset Forfeiture Unit in March. - Additional reporting Sapa
Saturday Star

Cape vows to tackle N2 protest menace
IOL News 30 July 2013

Cape Town - The protection of the N2 highway, as a key economic lifeline, is under careful scrutiny by the provincial government and the Cape Town municipality.

In the light of the recent protests, some of which have spilled on to the N2, Transport MEC Robin Carlisle said the transport and law enforcement departments of the provincial government and the City of Cape Town had met the SA National Roads Agency to thrash out new ideas to keep the highway safe.

On Sunday, parts of the N2 had to be closed when “poo protesters” ran amok, hurling human waste at passing cars and endangering lives as motorists were forced to take evasive action.

“It’s a very deeply concerning issue,” Carlisle said. “There’s the safety of drivers and our economy is dependent on our transport corridors - without them we’re in trouble.

“They are essential to our economy, particularly given the decline of rail freight. They are thus a perfect target for demonstrators/protesters/political opportunists.”

The repeated closure of key transport corridors constituted an own goal for an already ailing economy.

A group of protesters barricaded the N2 and flung portable toilets and faeces at vehicles. Photo: Ross Jansen

Cape Argus
“If our freeways are going to become a battle scene, then this very painful breakdown of law and order could have frightening consequences.”

Carlisle agreed that laws were already in place banning pedestrians from national roads, and authorities were doing their utmost.

“The city and province have done as much as they can. Hot spots are under 24-hour surveillance and are patrolled by metro police and provincial traffic.

“Cleaning service providers are on 24/7 standby.

“However, we don’t have heavily armed personnel to deal with certain situations. If there is a reasonably sized crowd there’s a limit to what we can do - it becomes the police’s job. Only the police have the legal authority, the strength and the resources to deal with the problem.”

New measures were the testing of an “indestructible” new fence, which could line the freeway in future, as well as recently installed cameras with night-vision to monitor the freeway.

And a strong presence of metro police allowed a speedy reaction to protests - although with limited resources which only the police had.

Cape Argus

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Cape poo-flingers target the N2
Natasha Prince (Cape Argus) 29 July 2013

Cape Town - Cape Town’s poo protesters ran amok again on Sunday, forcing the closure of a part of the N2 when they flung faeces at motorists, forcing some to stop and drive back against traffic.

This is the latest incident in a campaign that has seen the Western Cape legislature and Cape Town International Airport vandalised with waste by protesters in recent months.

Some panicked motorists were forced to turn around on Sunday - driving in the wrong direction on the N2 - after a group of protesters barricaded the road and flung portable toilets and faeces at vehicles.

Traffic on the incoming lane of the N2 near the Mew Way off-ramp ground to a halt late on Sunday afternoon as a group of men lined the road, armed with portable loos and bags of faeces.

Cars travelling on the road, where the speed limit is 120km, braked hard or were forced to slow down as the protesters approached.

Some drivers swerved, almost hitting the barricade in the middle of the highway.

A few drivers, some with children, who sped up and rammed through the barricade, had poo splashed across their vehicles and portaloos flung at their windows.

With canisters filled with faeces in hand, the protesters poured the waste on the tar and some hurled toilets over the barricade on to the opposite outgoing lane of the N2.

A tattered mattress and tyre were set alight while other protesters jeered at the vehicles’ occupants.

A city law enforcement vehicle arrived on the scene within minutes.

But the officers quickly backed up - reversing their vehicle as the protesters moved towards them, threatening to throw more faeces.

Soon afterwards, several police vehicles arrived.

As a fourth police vehicle pulled up, stun grenades were tossed at the protesters as the officers alighted.

Groups of onlookers - watching from the fence separating Khayelitsha and the N2 - and protesters dashed in through a hole in the fence before disappearing among the shacks.

A man in a yellow T-shirt was apprehended, but the onlookers told police he was not one of the protesters and he was released.

Earlier in the afternoon, 15 members of a task team that had been set up to lead protests following the arrest of protesters at the Cape Town International Airport for throwing faeces, held a press conference at a hall in Khayelitsha.

Police vehicles were parked outside the hall.

Task team members said they believed they were being monitored by police since the arrest of nine people - including former ANC councillor Andile Lili and ANC proportional councillor Loyiso Nkohla - for the poo-throwing incident at the airport.

The task team vowed to continue fighting and would continue to make the province “ungovernable”.

In a statement the task team said: “Faeces will fly until people’s demands are met”.

A march is planned for Wednesday, including one to the offices of the National Prosecuting Authority to demand that charges against the seven people arrested be withdrawn.
Cape Argus

Dunoon protesters set sights on Killarney
Weekend Argus 27 July 2013

Cape Town - Dunoon residents have their sights set on the Killarney racetrack land, and have given the city 21 days to give them permission to move on to it, or to find them alternative land.

This latest threat was issued on Friday morning after violent clashes between protesters from the Dunoon informal settlement and police had forced authorities to close the N7 and Potsdam roads.

Thousands of Dunoon residents took to the streets, causing traffic chaos that saw hundreds of Capetonians arrive hours late for work.

Police spokesman Captain Frederick van Wyk said police used rubber bullets and stun grenades after protesters had pelted officers with stones.

“There have been no arrests, but a public violence case has been opened,” he confirmed last night.

The march, led by the South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco), was to highlight issues of housing, sanitation, and safety and security, among other concerns, said the Sanco secretary in Ward 104, Bulelwa Mayende.

Mayende explained that residents believed that the Western Province Motor Club lease at the racetrack was due to expire, and they wanted to be accommodated on the land.

“The Western Province Motor Club should not have its lease renewed while we live in less than desirable conditions. We want the municipality to ensure that they give us land for housing,” she said.

The community had been waiting a decade for decent housing, and they were angry, Mayende said.

“There is an overwhelming number of people in this area, and there has been no direction regarding a housing solution. There has not even been talk of identifying land, and yet there is a track where cars and people who do not live in this community make a noise for those of us who live here.”

Mayende added that the community had also identified Wolwerivier land, near Dunoon, as another area where housing could be provided.

Lenox Nogqala, 48, who has been living in a shack in Dunoon since 2002, said he was sick of waiting. “People are getting houses in other places but we have been neglected. I have been forced to keep my two children back home in the Eastern Cape because my home is not suitable for us all.”

Ward councillor Lubabalo Makeleni said the area was a “time bomb”, adding:

“The community has been discussing these issues - housing, sanitation, crime, safety and security, sports and recreation facilities – for a long time, but the pending eviction order for residents of the Siyahlala informal settlement and a cancelled meeting by the mayor triggered the protest.”

The city would have to explain to the community why they could not occupy the Killarney racetrack land.

“As councillors we keep being asked that question, but we do not have the answers,” Makeleni said.

Western Province Motor Club spokesman Adrian Pheiffer said, however, that their lease was not set to expire any time soon.

“We have another 12 years to go. I have no idea where people could have gotten that idea from. It has never been discussed, and the council is well aware of how much time we have,” he said, adding that the club was negotiating a renewal of its lease.

“The land is not about to be available any time soon, definitely not. We have been at Killarney since 1949. When we moved in there it was dirt and bush, we built it up since then. There was nobody in Table View, Table View hardly existed then. That’s why we think we are entitled to remain there,” Pheiffer said.

Tandeka Gqada, the city’s mayco member for Human Settlements, said her office was not aware of the imminent expiry of the lease.

The city was, however, considering various options concerning the acquisition of pockets of land around Dunoon.

“Although there are no new housing projects at Dunoon, mainly because of scarcity of land, the city’s human settlements directorate has several ‘upgrading of informal settlements programme’ projects that are listed. Doornbach, which is in Dunoon, is mentioned in the Integrated Development Plan document,” Gqada said, adding that Killarney and Wolwerivier were not being considered for housing.
Weekend Argus

Du Noon protesters wreak havoc
IOL News 26 July 2013

Cape Town - Protesters blocked a road and stoned passing vehicles in Cape Town on Friday morning, Western Cape police said.

Captain Frederick van Wyk said the group threw rubble onto the N7 and Potsdam Road intersection at Du Noon from 5am, in protest over service delivery.

“Later, splinter groups of protesters prevented people from going to work. Some of these people were assaulted and the SA Police Service used stun grenade 1/8s 3/8 to disperse the protesters,” he said.

The group then started damaging road signs and set electrical poles alight.

They also stoned police. One officer was injured and some police vehicles were damaged.

Police used stun grenades and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd.

No other casualties were reported.

Van Wyk said a public violence case was opened but no arrests had been made. - Sapa

‘Use Killarney racetrack for housing’
Daneel Knoetze and Murray Williams 26 July 2013

Cape Town - Protesters from the Du Noon informal settlement clashed violently with police on Friday morning, forcing authorities to close the N7 and Potsdam Road.

The protest was over housing, and protesters have called for the land occupied by Killarney racetrack to be made available for settlement.

At rush hour, traffic was diverted away from where thousands of protesters had gathered in Potsdam Road near Killarney Gardens, causing an enormous traffic jam.

A march on City of Cape Town offices at the Paddocks was approved by the city for 9am, and protesters gathered on the N7 and Potsdam from 4am. Police at the scene were pelted with stones, and they retaliated with rubber bullets and stun grenades.

Some protesters forced Du Noon residents who were on their way to work to join the march.

The Cape Argus witnessed an assault on one of these commuters, which left him with a bloody gash on his head.

“We urged people at all the community meetings leading up to today to remain peaceful. Unfortunately, when there are crowds as big as this, violent people think that they can get away with these sorts of actions,” said South African National civics Organisation (Sanco) member Joel Ludziya.

Sanco appeared to be the driving force behind the protest, with Bulelwa Mayende, Sanco’s branch secretary for Du Noon, speaking on behalf of residents.

She said the protests would escalate and be brought to the city centre if the city did not respond to their demands within 21 days of today’s march.

The demands related generally to the lack of housing, crime, poor service delivery and sanitation.

Resident Noluthando Ludziya said shack dwellers wanted an answer on the future of the land being used as the Western Province Motor Club’s Killarney racetrack.

They claimed the contract between the club and the city for the usage of this land ends next year and have demanded that the land become available for settlement and housing.

“There are many other pieces of land in ward 104, and we want the city to make those available as well. Our conditions are really terrible. The city should build houses in Du Noon, and make other land available for people to settle on while they wait. That is what we are asking for,” Ludziya said.

Police spokesman Captain FC van Wyk said police remained at the scene and no arrests had been made.

The roads were reopened shortly before 10am on Friday, but some businesses in Du Noon closed for the day.

Simcelile Fatman said: “There’s a lot of solidarity within the community... Most people have given up on going to work today to show support. We are all affected by the same conditions.”

The City’s JP Smith said the local clinic had been forced to close because of the protests: “This means that no one in the area has access to health care until the protest subsides.”
Cape Argus


The Zimbabwe Solidarity Forum (ZSF)
Press Statement For Immediate Release
27 July 2013

428 King's Highway, (Corner Elizabeth Grove),
Lynnwood, Pretoria
Pick Up Point, 8am, COSATU House, 110 Jorissen Street, Cnr Simmonds, Braamfontein

The Israeli embassy serves as a symbolic target for the international complicity that allows for a minority militarized anti-democratic elite in Zimbabwe to retain hold on power at all costs.


The protest picket also serves as a reminder that in less than a week Zimbabweans will go to the polls in an election that is highly unlikely to produce a legitimate accepted outcome. We will be right back where we started in 2008.

On 17th July 2013 a multi-sectoral gathering of civil society formations from across Southern Africa, meeting under the banner of the Zimbabwe Solidarity Forum, resolved to commit themselves to a solidarity action plan in support of their Zimbabwean counterparts.

The Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition Feya Feya Election Campaign specifically targets NIKUV as a company at the centre of the manipulated, corrupt and highly politicised electoral systems within which the upcoming election is scheduled to take place.

This joint Regional Zimbabwe Solidarity action serves to galvanise support from across the region to call on our governments to say that enough is enough, a culture of un-manipulated free and fair electoral democracy is at the heart of our collective struggles for freedom, for liberation and for emancipation.

Similar protests will be organised in the following countries, Namibia, Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania, Botswana, Swaziland, Mozambique, and Lesotho.

We will be embarking on a programme of mass action that will seek the maximum participation of the citizens across the SADC Region who seek to express their solidarity support for the demands and concerns contained within the communiqués released by Zimbabwean civics and outlined in the Feya Feya Campaign document calling for a peaceful free and fair election

Cape rocked by service protests
iAfrica 26 July 2013

Police have had to use stun grenades to try and disperse demonstrators in the informal settlement of Du Noon in Cape Town.

On Friday morning, protesters took to the streets over poor service delivery.

Dozens of angry residents, most of them brandishing sticks, are demanding better living conditions. They were making their way to municipal offices in nearby Milnerton.

Some residents pelted vehicles on the N7 highway with rocks. Officials eventually had to close the freeway.

The entire Potsdam Road leading from Du Noon to Milnerton was littered with rubble and dirt. Protestors also tipped over portable toilets.

Residents have vowed to continue protesting until their demands are met.

The Western Cape has recorded an increase in the number of service delivery protests in recent months.

In June, protesters blocked parts of the N2 highway during a protest against poor service delivery.

Residents burnt tyres, blocked the road with objects and threw human waste onto the highway.

Earlier in June, more than 150 people were arrested for public violence while en route to Cape Town's CBD.

The protesters had been planning to dump human waste at the Western Cape legislature.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) which governs the province believes the protests are politically motivated ahead of the general elections in 2014.

FAWU 26 July 2013

About 500 members of the Food and Allied Workers Union (FAWU), working for the 3D
Marketing Services, a sales’ and merchandising company, have been on strike action
since the 12 June 2013 in pursuit of four demands as follows.

Agang, ANC trade blows in Mokopane
IOL News 25 July 2013

Johannesburg - Almost a year after Limpopo police complained that they were tired of putting out fires at chaotic political meetings, Agang SA and ANC members have clashed at Mokopane as tension rises ahead of next year’s general election.

Agang members on a recruitment drive at Mozombane village exchanged blows with local ANC members. This resulted in a car belonging to ANC councillor Sammy Mathebula being damaged.

It’s not clear who started the fight.

Agang communications head Thabo Leshilo said politically intolerant ANC members had provoked his party’s supporters before manhandling them.

Limpopo ANC task team provincial secretary Joy Matshoge said Agang “hooligans” and “purveyors of violence” were the ones who attacked Mathebula.

The clash is the latest case of intimidation, threats and political intolerance to have rocked parts of South Africa over the past few months.

Political rivals have clashed in Limpopo, the Western Cape, North West and KwaZulu-Natal.

In some cases, the clashes resulted in the killings of ANC, IFP and National Freedom Party members.

Limpopo police spokesman Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said two people had been arrested in connection with the Mokopane incident.

“Apparently Agang people were on a recruitment drive. There were clashes between themselves and some members of the ANC,” Mulaudzi said.

“That scuffle led to us being called to come and defuse the situation. Two Agang members were arrested for public violence and were released on a warning.”

In August last year, Mulaudzi told The Star that Limpopo police were tired of intervening at chaotic political meetings where drunks threatened each other, clashed violently and even exchanged missiles.

This came after a clash between Julius Malema and President Jacob Zuma’s supporters.

Sasco marches for fee education
IOL News 24 July 2013

Cape Town - Students marched to Parliament on Wednesday, calling for free education.

SA Students' Congress (Sasco) provincial secretary Sello Nkatho said the students marched from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology in Cape Town.

The group intended to hand over its memorandum to a representative of the education commission.

Nkatho said the students wanted education to be free for every young person who qualified as poor, according to a government means test.

He envisioned the education assistance taking the form of a bursary.

“There is a body of evidence gathered that shows where government has a political will and correct administration, education can be made free for the poor, the disenfranchised, and the destitute,” he said.

It was unacceptable that higher learning institutes increased their fees between eight and 12 percent every year, said Nkatho.

Sasco would continue with marches and “other alternatives” should government not respond to its call.

Marches were taking place on Wednesday in all provinces except the Free State, where a march had been postponed.

A national march was planned on Thursday and would start at the Tshwane City Hall in Pretoria. - Sapa

Explosions at Pagad march
IOL News 25 July 2013

Cape Town - Bombs were hurled at a house and a car dealership in Athlone on Wednesday night, at the same time the organisation People Against Gangsterism And Drugs (Pagad) held a motorcade protest in the area.

Pagad has denied any involvement in the blasts, which were reminiscent of attacks associated with the organisation at the turn of this century.

Nobody was injured in Wednesday night’s blasts and damage was relatively minor.

Pagad on Wednesday night embarked on its third successive motorcade, in Athlone and Bokmakierie, “in a show of support for rehabilitated victims of drug abuse and those victims who are still suffering”.

Police spokesman FC van Wyk said on Thursday that an explosive device had been detonated at a car dealership, Velocity Cars, in Belgravia Estate at about 9.30pm. “It is suspected that the device was thrown into the premises before it was detonated. Vehicles on the property were damaged. No one was injured.”

Five minutes later, another explosive device was detonated at a house in Taurus Road in nearby Surrey Estate.

“The device caused damage to the garage door and shattered neighbours’ windows. No one was injured,” Van Wyk said.

This is the second bomb attack at the residence in three months, according to neighbours.

Pagad spokesman Haroon Orrie said on Thursday they had “heard about (the bombs) on the news” and had had “no involvement whatsoever”.

He added that Pagad’s enemies might be trying to frame them.

“We can’t say for certain, but often (when) Pagad finds its feet and has positive engagements with the public to bring our anti-drug and gangsterism message across, we see incidents of such attacks coinciding with our motorcades and events,” he said.

When Pagad launched its motorcade campaign on July 11, it drew a heavy police presence, as it did on Wednesday night.

Residents in Surrey Estate said that the house, which was unoccupied on Thursday morning, belonged to the owner of a taxi business. The Cape Argus phoned the home owner, but he refused to comment. The windows of the house and of cars in the driveway had been blown out.

Velocity Motors’ director, Niyaaz Jainoodian, said he had no idea who could have been behind the bombing.

“We have good relations with the community. I view this as an isolated case,” he said. He said he and his 25 staff members were stressed and “shell shocked” in the wake of the attack.

Council gives in on pay as workers storm meeting
Rochelle de Kock (The Herald) 25 July 2013

TENSIONS ran high yesterday as angry Nelson Mandela Bay municipal workers stormed a dramatic council meeting in which the ANC rammed through a decision to delay hiring permanent senior managers so that it could pay staff increases.

"We are literally robbing Peter to pay Paul. This is so irresponsible," one ANC councillor said.

The meeting at the old Wool Exchange building also saw public health acting executive director Dr Mamisa Chabula-Nxiweni appointed acting city boss, just days before Lindiwe Msengana-Ndlela is due back in office on Monday.

Buckling under pressure from Uitenhage and Despatch workers, ANC councillors voted for the city to fork out a total of R17-million, in two instalments, to pay them from today.

Chabula-Nxiweni's appointment had to be made for the payments to be signed off yesterday.

Violent protest erupts at Eskom's Medupi plant
Thalia Holmes (Mail & Guardian)24 July 2013

A wildcat strike at Eskom's Medupi plant has turned violent, with two cars stoned and unconfirmed reports that they were set alight by protesters.

Between 500 and 1 000 striking workers began protest action at the massive-scale coal fuelled plant, which is still under construction.

Reports on Twitter said on Wednesday that several people had been injured in violent confrontation between protesters and the police, but Eskom did not confirm this. "The protest turned violent with stone throwing and damage to two vehicles, but no one was injured as far as we are aware," it said.
Unions and management at Eskom are currently in a deadlock over wage negotiations.

The public owned company has offered a wage increase of 5.6% to the workers, but unions have dismissed this as an "insult".

Dissatisfaction with the negotiation process has already led to small-scale protests at four key Eskom power stations, including Matimba, Duvha, Matla and Hendrina over the past two weeks.

Last Friday, leaders from major union representatives the National Union of Metalworkers South Africa and the National Union of Mineworkers warned that unhappiness at other power stations would likely see further work stoppages.

Eskom approached the Labour Court last week in a bid to have any strike action by its employees recognised as unlawful, on the grounds that the company is a "designated service provider". It also asked the court to compel unions to issue a statement urging workers to remain at their posts.

But union leaders said they would do no such thing, and that workers were so angry that such an encouragement would not serve to quell them.

Eskom confirmed that the "majority" of workers at Medupi had been sent off site, but that they are "working to get back to normal operations as soon as possible".

"The situation is under control and calm has been restored on site," it said.

The strike comes just weeks after Public Enterprises Minister Melusi Gigaba announced that the completion of the Medupi plant – which is set to provide 4 800 MW of electricity to the country – will be delayed by at least six months.

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