Wednesday, August 29 2018

THE BIG STORIES

LEADING THE AGENDA

Sex pest: Boys talk of wrestling, choking every night

Three victims give harrowing accounts of sexual abuse at Parktown Boys’ High

Prega Govender
Journalist
3 min read

Small wonder: Artist carves out a future in miniature

Starting as an 11-year-old orphan trading his art on the street for food, Samuel Baloi has come a long way

Leonie Wagner
Journalist
3 min read

Analysis: Here’s hoping State Capture inquiry won’t be another Oscar trial

Pistorius’s defence strategy was enough to make you think twice about doing your civic duty and reporting to the police

Ranjeni Munusamy
Associate editor: analysis
4 min read

SMART NEWS

IN ONE TAKE

Dutch ‘jihadist’ linked to botanists’ murder in SA

Hawks work with Rotterdam prosecutors who claim their suspect knows two accused of kidnapping Rachel and Rod Saunders

By Jeff Wicks & AFP
3 min read

Cloud of doubt hangs over dagga prosecutions

Accused apply for stays of prosecution while Constitutional Court mulls high court decision 

Katharine Child
Journalist
4 min read

Over 1,000 dishes to shine new light on ‘dark energy’

New project in the Karoo will use hydrogen gas to unravel one of the most perplexing puzzles in physics

Tony Carnie
Journalist
5 min read

Varsity’s pet bereavement leave in for a ruff legal time

A decision by the University of KwaZulu-Natal to offer pet bereavement leave to staff could result in legal challenges

Nivashni Nair
Journalist
2 min read

Our youth are on a major detox, and it’s better than kale

SA youngsters admit they’ve cut down on social media in the past three months

Suthentira Govender
Journalist
2 min read

IDEAS

TO FEED YOUR MIND

Mission unaccomplished: We have an embassy problem

The fallout from Trump’s Twitter land bomb suggests something seriously amiss at our Washington outpost

Tony Leon
Columnist
6 min read

‘Journalism is fighting for its life. It is dying’

The rising cost of investigative journalism coupled with a drop in advertising revenue is a major worry for democracy

By AFP
3 min read

CROSSWORDS

GIVE YOUR BRAIN SOME EXERCISE

Today's cryptic crossword

It's time to put your brain to work

1 min read

Today's quick crossword

How fast can you get it done?

1 min read

VISUAL SIDE

EFF leader Julius Malema addressed the media at a media briefing on August 28 2018. Here are 5 quotes that came out of it.


SNAPSHOT

A group of Greenpeace Africa activists attempted to scale the iconic Nelson Mandela Bridge in Braamfontein‚ Johannesburg‚ to hoist a ‘coal kills’ banner. Greenpeace were protesting the inclusion of coal-fired energy in government’s latest draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) ‚ released on Monday. Melita Steele‚ senior climate and energy campaign manager‚ said‚ ‘The banner we are trying to drop states ‘more coal‚ more death‚ no water.’’
This is a protest A group of Greenpeace Africa activists attempted to scale the iconic Nelson Mandela Bridge in Braamfontein‚ Johannesburg‚ to hoist a ‘coal kills’ banner. Greenpeace were protesting the inclusion of coal-fired energy in government’s latest draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) ‚ released on Monday. Melita Steele‚ senior climate and energy campaign manager‚ said‚ ‘The banner we are trying to drop states ‘more coal‚ more death‚ no water.’’
Image: Alon Skuy

Six things about SA you need to know

Another racist: To K-word a Mockingbird

A Westville Girls High School teacher who resigned amid a racism scandal is accused of calling black people the k-word. English teacher Danielle de Bruyn has tendered her resignation, and the school insisted her “loss of control and bigoted view” went against its ethos. De Bruyn is understood to have become embroiled in a heated debate with her English class over drawing similarities between the set book‚ Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird‚ with the South African political landscape and farm killings. De Bruyn allegedly “went off on a tangent” while discussing the set book. She allegedly said reverse racism now because farmers were responsible for putting food on the table and now they were being subjected to attacks. When speaking to black girls in the class, she allegedly called them ‘these k****rs’, and went ‘crazy’.

Parly withdraws Expropriation Bill for a do-over

Parliament has withdrawn the Expropriation Bill because of the process under way to review section 25 of the constitution. ANC members of the public works committee welcomed the withdrawal. The bill was passed by parliament in 2016, and returned by Jacob Zuma in 2017, due to concerns arising from the public participation process followed by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). In February this year, the National Assembly and NCOP adopted a resolution instructing the constitutional review committee (CRC) to review — among other possible amendments — the section to make it possible for the state to expropriate land without compensation. The committee has withdrawn the bill in its current form for further consideration after the conclusion of the CRC process.

MultiChoice finds Manyi channel replacement

Newzroom Afrika has been announced as the new black-owned news channel that will replace former Gupta-linked news channel Afro Worldview. The closure of Afro Worldview last week triggered a storm of criticism, with critics blasting MultiChoice for leaving more than 300 staff jobless and shutting down an alternative voice in the media industry. MultiChoice opened bidding for the new channel earlier this year after a growing storm surrounding the Gupta family. The media giant said it had received more than 60 proposals‚ which were whittled down to a shortlist. Newzroom Afrika is a new company formed by Thokozani Nkosi of Eclipse TV and Thabile Ngwato of Rapid Innovation.

‘Prosperity’ with SA makes Theresa May jiggle

Social media users have been rating British Prime Minister Theresa May’s dance moves during her visit to Cape Town after a video showing her dancing went viral. May arrived in Cape Town on Tuesday morning as part of her visit to SA. She has pledged to focus on African investment and new trade deals ahead of Britain leaving the European Union. ‘As prime minister of a trading nation whose success depends on global markets, I want to see strong African economies that British companies can do business with. I want to create a new partnership between the UK and our friends in Africa built around shared prosperity and shared security.’ Wearing black pants, with leopard pumps, a white top and red jacket, May was ready for action. A lot of arms and feet, but at least there was coordination.

Granny wants her house lost in R100 auction

Gogo Mviko, 92, paid home instalments for years before she fell into arrears with the bank‚ was turfed out and the property was auctioned for R100. The granny from Joburg joined a picket outside the high court, which on Tuesday was hearing a case related to the foreclosure of bonds and sales in execution of properties. ‘I knew that I owed the bank, but I did not know that they would kick me out of the house and sell it for so little‚’ she said. Mviko lost her house in the 1980s after being retrenched and failing to pay bank arrears of R26‚000 despite having made payments for years towards the house. The house was subsequently auctioned. The case involves banks and sales in execution. Central to the case is under what circumstances a court should set a reserve price in sales and execution.

Are you ready for this confetti?

Dave Schmidt‚ a Durban 30-year-old born with Down Syndrome‚ has sold about 520 handfuls of confetti since his online shop went live on Sunday afternoon. Schmidt has become a sensation on social media for his love of making confetti. ‘It's nice colours. I like to sell it because they want it. I can watch Blue Tube [YouTube] when I work‚’ Schmidt said. His sister-in-law Derryn Schmidt explained that when she started a bridal company with a friend‚ they thought it was a good idea for Schmidt to make the confetti for the poppers. ‘Once his pile of boxes grew taller than him‚ we decided it was time to expand our target market beyond the wedding industry - hence our decision to create a company for him‚’ she said. Derryn said Schmidt's job suits his lifestyle.

THE WORLD

THE NEWS YOU DON'T NORMALLY GET TO HEAR

Did the pope turn a blind eye to abuse? He needs to tell us

Amid talk of resignation, Francis’s reform agenda will be gauged on whether he’s prepared to answer the charges

By Tim Stanley
6 min read

Scientists collect faeces to get species out of the poo

Black rhino and other endangered animals to benefit from initiative that gleans vital health data from droppings

By Matthew Stock
2 min read

Killer robots: they’re so real that the UN is already in talks to ban them

Protocols are urgently needed to prevent machines deciding for themselves who and when to kill, say activists

By AFP
2 min read

Maybe polar caps are melting from all the whale hot flushes

Scientists have discovered that Beluga whales and narwhals go through the menopause too

By Sarah Knapton
1 min read

SNAPSHOT

Revellers take part in the Notting Hill Carnival in London.
Peacocking Revellers take part in the Notting Hill Carnival in London.
Image: Reuters/Henry Nicholls

SIX THINGS ABOUT THE WORLD YOU NEED TO KNOW

Saudi women rev the engines of change

Speed-crazed women drivers such as Rana Almimoni are bound to turn heads in the deeply conservative Saudi Arabia, which overturned the world’s only ban on female motorists in June as part of a much-hyped liberalisation drive. Racing enthusiast Almimoni, 30, is defying the perception that only dainty cars in bright colours are popular with women drivers. ‘I adore speed. I love speed. My dream car is more than 500 horsepower,’ said Almimoni. ‘It’s a myth that Saudi women only choose pink and cute cars.’ Almimoni said she was awaiting an expected government decision that would permit women to obtain a “racing licence” that would allow her to hone her passion in motorsport competitions. That includes drifting, which is illegal in public but tolerated in the controlled environment of Dirab park. – AFP

‘Marriage is for Taiwan man, Taiwan woman’

Conservative campaigners blocked the legalisation of same-sex unions in Taiwan, proposing a public vote on the issue and saying any reforms would jeopardise 'family values'. Taiwan's top court ruled in May 2017 that preventing same-sex marriage was unconstitutional and gave a two-year deadline for its legalisation. But there has been little progress on the issue since then, with President Tsai Ing-wen saying society is still divided on the issue. The anti-gay Happiness of the Next Generation Alliance submitted a referendum petition to election authorities to prevent the civil code from being amended to recognise same-sex partnerships. If successful, the move may instead require a separate law for civil unions between same-sex couples, a move that gay marriage campaigners say would be discriminatory and offer fewer legal protections. – AFP

China one-child policy comes back to bite

China's moves to combat an ageing population by relaxing decades-old curbs on family size have hit an unexpected snag: many parents are no longer interested in having more babies. The government indicated it would scrap its policy that limits the number of children per family through tough fines and sometimes through forced abortions and sterilisations. The world's most populous country introduced its one-child policy in 1979, and last tweaked it in early 2016, raising the limit to two children as the nation scrambled to rejuvenate a greying population of some 1.4 billion. But the pent-up demand for more children has ebbed, experts say. Couples have increasingly delayed having even one child as they devote more time to other goals, such as building their careers. The skyrocketing cost of raising children in booming China has also given many prospective parents pause. – AFP

In Bangkok, buddies sell each other electricity

Residents in a Bangkok neighbourhood are trying out a renewable energy trading platform that allows them to buy and sell electricity between themselves, signalling the growing popularity of such systems as solar panels get cheaper. The pilot project in the centre of Thailand's capital is among the world's largest peer-to-peer renewable energy trading platforms using blockchain. The system has a total generating capacity of 635kW that can be traded via Bangkok city's electricity grid between a mall, a school, a dental hospital and an apartment complex. Commercial operations will begin next month. – Reuters

The dangerous side of healthy

With increasing numbers of adults switching to plant-based diets, there are now thought to be 540,000 vegans in Britain, up from 150,000 a decade ago. Many parents are choosing to raise their babies and children in this way. Experts have warned, however, that “clean eating” trends, such as going gluten or dairy-free – with no medical reason – could lead to nutritional deficiencies in children and set up unhealthy relationships with food. In June, researchers in France said non-dairy milks were dangerous for babies, in a study of parents who had chosen to replace breast or formula milk with an alternative before their child had reached the age of one. A third of the children were found to have malnutrition. And in recent years there have also been reports of children raised on a vegan diet being admitted to hospital suffering with malnutrition. – Telegraph

The way to your heart is your choc-filled stomach

A little bit of what you fancy could be good for the heart, as well as the soul, a study suggests. Research on more than half a million adults found that those who ate chocolate in moderation had a lower risk of heart failure than those who avoided such treats. Scientists found those eating up to three bars monthly had a 13 percent lower risk of heart failure compared with those who ate none. Researchers say natural compounds in cocoa called flavonoids boost blood vessel health and help reduce inflammation. But they warned against having too much chocolate, with those indulging daily experiencing a 17 percent increase in their risk of heart failure. The condition affects more than 900,000 adults in the UK, causing breathlessness, chronic coughing, fatigue and often premature death. – Telegraph

THE BUSINESS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Are we reading too much into Curro’s lofty share price?

We’ve learnt that you don’t need to know a person’s exact weight to know if they are fat or not

By Chris Gilmour
3 min read

All smiles as JSE hits 60,000 but it’s too soon to say bull

The breakout by the all share from its range-bound trade is welcome news for investors

By Maarten Mittner
2 min read

Plain wrong that a company like Dawn goes down the toilet

Outfits aimed specifically at water reticulation and sanitaryware should not be struggling as they are

By Giulietta Talevi
1 min read

Sea Harvest: What goes best with fish? How about cheese?

Operating a fishing fleet must be quite a different kettle of, you know, to running a dairy company

By Giulietta Talevi
1 min read

LIFESTYLE

CULTURE COMES ALIVE

No glove lost between me and plastic stuff in kitchens

Wherever it crops up, the material makes the world worse (except in the case of my giant Hello Kitty lamp)

By Andrea Burgener
2 min read

Finally, we get to appreciate Reuben’s art in Sandton

Celebrity chef Reuben Riffel treks north to open his first eatery outside the Western Cape

By Zola Zingithwa
1 min read

Just eat it: The next step in the war on unfantastic plastic

While this may all feel a bit Willy Wonka, edible disposables are tipped to soon enter the mainstream

By Madeleine Howell
6 min read

Yes, you can still cut loose when money’s tight

You won’t have to scrimp if you know the right places

By Aneesa Adams
2 min read

SPORT

FINISH LINE ESSENTIALS

SPORTS DAY: Innocent is the only Pirate in Bafana squad

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
Journalist
5 min read

Bafana fans are nothing if not suckers for punishment

Here we go again – hoping against any logical reason that this excuse for a national team can get its ass into gear

Marc Strydom
Journalist
5 min read

Blasts from the past: Gerrie dots down to level the series

Today in SA sports history: August 29

David Isaacson
Journalist
1 min read