Friday, May 18 2018

THE BIG STORIES

LEADING THE AGENDA

Exclusive: Top-secret police codes up for sale

Cyber crime experts warn this could expose critical cop systems to hackers

Graeme Hosken
Journalist
3 min read

Gupta proxies fight with a barrage of lawsuits

Business rescue practitioners, wilting under endless litigation, suspect it is a 'well-devised stratagem'

Kyle Cowan
Journalist
4 min read

SMART NEWS

IN ONE TAKE

Nature has mitey clever ways to fix our planet

We can improve our physical world by reverse engineering nature’s blueprints, say biomimicry experts

Tanya Farber
Journalist
3 min read

Community fumes as popular top cop is put back in civvies

Police minister in the dark after Mitchells Plain station commander is suspended - again

Nashira Davids
Journalist
2 min read

No meds, no beds, general mayhem, but patients keep on coming

As Nehawu strike drags on with no end in sight, hospitals nationwide are plunged ever more into crisis

Katharine Child
Journalist
4 min read

Revived air link part of bid to hit 'reset button' with India

Indian high commissioner says she is also working on a simplified visa regime to boost economic partnership

Suthentira Govender
Journalist
2 min read

Puppies become their cutest just when they need us most

Pups become most attractive to humans just as their mum starts to get sick of them, a study reveals

Claire Keeton
Journalist
3 min read

IDEAS

TO FEED YOUR MIND

Ooooh! I can’t wait for Saturday afternoon ... sport

That kiss gave us a glimpse of something about the world we didn’t understand, but maybe one day would

6 min read

I wanted to hear ‘laurel’, but alas, I'm a ‘yanny’ man

The latest Internet oddity reminds us that what we hear, and how we hear it, is smoke and gossamer

Tom Eaton
Columnist
1 min read

It's offaly complicated, but the proof isn't in the pudding

A column to satisfy your inner grammar nerd

Sue de Groot
Journalist
2 min read

BESPOKE

THE WORLD IN FULL COLOUR

Nasa shocker: Africa's getting wetter

... except where it's getting drier

Dave Chambers
Cape Town bureau chief
8 min read

VISUAL SIDE

Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi is planning a major shake-up of the medical-scheme industry, with new rules on benefits, prices and governance, which he says will give consumers a better deal.


SNAPSHOT

Coffins are lined up in a mass grave during the burial of people killed when a dam burst its walls, overrunning nearby homes, in Solai town near Nakuru, Kenya.
Dam shame Coffins are lined up in a mass grave during the burial of people killed when a dam burst its walls, overrunning nearby homes, in Solai town near Nakuru, Kenya.
Image: Reuters/Thomas Mukoya

Six things about SA you need to know

Cops nab five at hostel after cash-in-transit heist

Five people have been arrested in connection with a cash-in-transit heist in Boksburg‚ Ekurhuleni, on Thursday. The five were caught at the George Kok hostel in Johannesburg after police chased them with a helicopter. A rifle was recovered after the 9.30am heist, said police spokesman Captain Mavela Masondo. He said more than 10 suspects, in four vehicles, approached two G4S security vans and started shooting. “The suspects managed to blow up the cash vans and take some cash.” Two security guards were injured. The bomb squad was called to the scene and police worked for hours picking up the leftover cash which was blown around by the wind. Masondo admitted that cash-in-transit heists were becoming a serious problem in Gauteng.

Man should lose job over ‘swart man’ slur

The Constitutional Court has ruled that a white man who referred to a black colleague as a “swart man” should lose his job. Meyer Bester lost his job in May 2013 after he stormed into a meeting at his workplace at the Thembelani mine in Rustenburg on April 26. He was not happy that a parking spot next to his had been given to Solly Tlhomelang. He said loudly and aggressively: “Verwyder daardie swart man se voertuig” (remove that black man’s vehicle). Bester approached the Commission for Conciliation‚ Mediation and Arbitration and was reinstated in December 2013. The Labour Court overturned this ruling, but Bester appealed to the Labour Appeals Court, which ruled in his favour. In a unanimous judgment‚ Constitutional Court Justice Leona Theron said “swart man” was “racially loaded”.

Pandor: private sector can pay for postgraduates

Higher Education and Training Minister Naledi Pandor has conceded that the government’s new free higher education policy did not make provision for postgraduate students‚ and suggested the private sector could help fill the gap. The policy‚ announced by then president Jacob Zuma last December‚ provides tertiary education bursaries for people from households with an annual income of less than R350,000. It covers the full cost of study‚ but only at undergraduate level‚ posing a headache for universities seeking to increase their number of researchers. Pandor said a solution could be found “[in] partnership with the private sector”. She acknowledged that the demand for university places was to some extent driven by the poor reputation of South Africa’s Technical and Vocational Educational Training colleges‚ but said work was under way to improve the sector. The Department of Higher Education and Training expected 84,000 first-time university students would be fully funded this year under the new policy.

Security upgraded at Durban mosque for Ramadan

As muslims enter the holy month of Ramadan‚ security at the Imam Hussain mosque in Verulam will be boosted in the wake of last week’s attacks. The mosque’s founder‚ Azaad Seedat‚ said CCTV cameras would be installed in and around the building. The Hawks had taken over the investigation after it was found to have elements of “extremism”. Seedat was speaking at a press briefing hosted by the National Interfaith Council of South Africa in Durban’s city hall on Thursday. The discovery of a pipe bomb at the mosque on Sunday came four days after a bloody knife attack that claimed the life of bystander Abbas Essop. Experts say the attacks could signify an escalation in tensions between Sunni and Shia muslims.

R67bn for three years of FeesMustFall

The government has set aside R67-billion to fund the post-matric education system‚ which includes R33-billion to be allocated towards free higher education. This is according to Higher Education and Training Minister Naledi Pandor‚ who was speaking on Thursday before the tabling of her department's spending plans for this financial year in the National Assembly. She said the National Student Financial Aid Scheme would receive R33-billion in the next three years to finance the studies of first-time university students, while R10.3-billion would fund students choosing technical and vocational education and training (TVET )colleges. For 2018 alone‚ the scheme had been allocated R20.5-billion from the department's budget of almost R90-billion‚ with the balance of the money being transferred to universities‚ TVET colleges and community and education training colleges.

Judge shoots down Panayiotou's leave to appeal

Christopher Panayiotou’s application for leave to appeal his murder conviction was quickly shot down by Judge Dayalin Chetty on Thursday morning. Chetty said the only victim here was Panayiotou’s slain wife‚ Jayde‚ who was now being supplanted by other "would be victims" such as middleman Luthando Siyoni and his girlfriend‚ Babalwa Breakfast. He said senior defence advocate Terry Price's argument served only to obscure the real issues at hand and to try to deceive Chetty into granting leave to appeal. Chetty said no other court would come to another conclusion than Panayiotou orchestrated his wife's murder.

THE WORLD

STUFF THAT MATTERS

Miracle new cancer cure 'is sexist'

Immunotherapy is found to be, on average, half as beneficial for female cancer sufferers

By Henry Bodkin
2 min read

Whitney Houston was abused by lesbian cousin

A new documentary is full of shocking revelations on the life of the legendary singer

By Harriet Alexander
4 min read

Curb that habit: Vatican warns nuns to cut social media time

Legislative document urges a little sobriety and discretion, or risk being 'distracted by noises and news'

By Margi Murphy
1 min read

So much for dolphins rescuing us from sharks

One just looks curiously on as New Zealand's 'first bloke' fights for his life against hungry sea predator

By AFP
1 min read

SNAPSHOT

British Prime Minister Theresa May, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban pose among other heads of state during the family photo at the EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Stomach in, chest out British Prime Minister Theresa May, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban pose among other heads of state during the family photo at the EU-Western Balkans Summit in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Image: Vassil Donev/Pool via Reuters

SIX THINGS ABOUT THE WORLD YOU NEED TO KNOW

Fine way to deal with cat callers and wolf whistlers

Men who wolf whistle or sexually harass women on French streets face fines of up to €750 after lawmakers in the National Assembly approved tougher legislation to combat sexual violence. The law comes amid a worldwide wave of sexual assault allegations against men in business, entertainment and politics, which have sparked online protest movements. In a drive to discourage sexual harassment on the street, cat callers and aggressively lecherous individuals of either sex can be hit with on-the-spot penalties ranging from €90 to €750. Some critics have mocked the harassment measures as an end to French romance. - Reuters

Boogieing Bibi cock-a-hoop over clucking Netta

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu couldn’t resist doing the “chicken dance” with Netta Barzilai when the Eurovision song contest winner visited the Israeli leader and his wife, Sara, in his official residence. A video clip he posted on Twitter showed a beaming Netanyahu flapping his arms with Barzilai as they did her trademark moves. Wearing a Japanese-style kimono and geisha hairdo, the 25-year-old Israeli singer won the glitzy Eurovision pageant, watched by more than 200-million people around the world, in Lisbon on Saturday. Her song, “I’m Not Your Toy”, has a woman’s empowerment twist, and it began with Barzilai mimicking chicken clucking. - Reuters

Britain betting on gambling machine crackdown

Britain will cut the maximum stake on fixed-odds betting terminals to just £2 after the government opted to try to tackle problem gambling and rejected claims that it could cost thousands of jobs. The decision follows complaints that the machines, which enable people to bet up to £100 every 20 seconds on electronic games such as roulette, were highly addictive and had led to gamblers building up big losses. Bookmakers argued the fixed-odds betting terminals were a major source of income for high-street betting shops, which are struggling to stay afloat as younger gamblers move online. - Reuters

Chinese pupils get some in-four-face time

A Chinese school has installed facial recognition technology to monitor how attentive students are in class. Every movement of pupils at Hangzhou Number 11 High School in eastern China is watched by three cameras above the blackboard. The "smart classroom behaviour management system", or "smart eye", is the latest highly intrusive surveillance equipment to be rolled out in China, where leaders have rushed to use hi-tech equipment to monitor the wider population. The system will soon be deployed across the school, headmaster Ni Ziyuan said. Some students are already changing their behaviour because of the system. - The Daily Telegraph

Mayor wants to bleat about the bushes

Rome's mayor wants to use sheep and goats to graze the city's chronically neglected parks and gardens back into shape, inviting mockery from political opponents. Years of budget cuts mean there is an acute lack of council gardeners. Parks, gardens, verges and the banks of the Tiber are in a lamentable state - grass is often chest high, cane thickets grow to 4.5m or more and benches are smothered in jungle-like vegetation. Virginia Raggi, a member of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, thinks sheep and goats is the way to go. The idea was raised by a councilor in charge of environmental affairs, Pinuccia Montanari: “The mayor recently urged me to look at the use of sheep or other animals (for managing parks and gardens). It is a simple method that they use in other big cities like Berlin.” - The Daily Telegraph

Uninvited diners get a wet surprise

Annoyed at seagulls that pester its patrons, a restaurant in Perth, Australia, has armed customers with water pistols. 3Sheets restaurant owner Toby Evans said the problem was unusually bad and something had to be done to keep customers from being scared away. “Now they are getting cheekier and cheekier,” he told Nine Network television. The gulls congregate near the waterfront restaurants at a marina, Hillary’s Boat Harbour, scavenging leftovers or hoping for scraps from diners. Evans decided to equip each table with a water pistol and customers say the strategy works. “We didn’t have to throw anything at them or run for cover,” said one. - Reuters

THE BUSINESS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Squid pro quo: Calamari takes up the slack at Premier

Chokka-block catches in a traditionally quiet season

By Marc Hasenfuss
1 min read

Time for the Reserve Bank to get its hooks into Steinhoff

How about the bank trying to haul back some of the billions that were salted away offshore?

By BusinessLIVE reporter
1 min read

Come on government, get a move on with infrastructure

Even the South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) is strapped for cash and way behind on issuing tenders

By BusinessLIVE reporter
1 min read

LIFESTYLE

CULTURE COMES ALIVE

Going ape in the lounge

Odd feelings occur when you hear ‘Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino’, the new album from Arctic Monkeys

By Yolisa Mkele
3 min read

Won’t you take us to the bioscope?

The films opening in our cinemas this week

By Critics’ choice
1 min read

Weird scenes inside Lars von Trier’s mind

Treat his new ‘The House That Jack Built’ with care

By Robbie Collin
7 min read

It’s a crime what people think they can get away with

Five must-watch crime documentary series 

By Rebecca Deuchar
2 min read

SPORT

FINISH LINE ESSENTIALS

SPORTS DAY: Go easy on Barca, Sundowns told

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

4 min read

A hundred candles in the wind for Elton on Saturday

Maverick flyhalf Jantjies will have earned a ton’s worth of appearances for the Lions

Liam Del Carme
Journalist
3 min read

Blast from the past: Scruffy loses it with his putter

Today in SA sports history: May 18

David Isaacson
Journalist
1 min read