Friday, February 1 2019

THE BIG ISSUES

LEADING THE AGENDA

Revealed: The dodgy politicians behind the Bosasa code names

Thursday’s witness furnished the inquiry with a list of names of politicians who received huge upgrades to their homes

Amil Umraw
Journalist
4 min read

‘How Bosasa lawyer pressured Jake White to make Luke Watson a Bok’

Strong-arming Bok coach, alongside Zondo evidence, shows how Watson family flaunted its political muscle

By Kevin McCallum
4 min read

Explainer: Why the Coligny pair could win on appeal

A trial that has torn a small SA town apart could have been based on false information

Iavan Pijoos
Journalist
4 min read

SMART NEWS

IN ONE TAKE

Zille’s tax revolt: It may be tempting, but ...

Times Select asks the experts whether Helen Zille's latest proposal is one of her worst or better ideas

Mpumzi Zuzile
Journalist
3 min read

Shock to the system: Gauteng intern doctors not paid

Health department blames an admin slip-up that affects interns and community service doctors across the province

Katharine Child
Journalist
2 min read

Those blood-boiling hospital queues could easily be fixed

The long lines could be cut by 80% with an easy solution, say experts after studying the problem

Sipokazi Fokazi
Journalist
3 min read

8 years + lots of tinkering = 0: School maths still fails varsity students

Those who were taught from a knowledge-based curriculum did no better that their outcomes-based counterparts

Dave Chambers
Cape Town bureau chief
1 min read

Say it out loud: reading to your kids is a brain-booster

It's also a powerful way for children and grown-ups to bond, and builds a 'priceless' foundation for success at school

Tanya Farber
Journalist
2 min read

IDEAS

TO FEED YOUR MIND

What the Dickens?! Look what they dug up near dull old Durbs

It's the last place you'd expect to dig up a priceless portrait of a great writer - I mean, it doesn't even have attics

6 min read

Why an alien rolled an apartheid death machine over a banana

There are two pretty sensible reasons to blow R23m on ultra-militarised Casspirs that are synonymous with apartheid

Tom Eaton
Columnist
3 min read

Getting to the bottom of those creepy Michael Jackson claims

‘I want to speak the truth as loud as I spoke the lie,’ says Wade Robson, who previously denied sex abuse stories

By Alice Vincent
11 min read

Lee Miller: a life too colourful for black and white

Photographer, actress, model, journalist and Surrealist muse - she blurred the line between fiction and fact

By Whitney Scharer
8 min read

SNAPSHOT

Six things about SA you need to know

Ramaphosa outlines priorities for government

Clean governance, inclusive economic growth and delivery of quality services are some of the priorities President Cyril Ramaphosa wants government to focus on. The president issued this call to cabinet as he opened the final cabinet lekgotla of the current administration in Tshwane on Thursday. The lekgotla, which the president is co-chairing with his deputy, David Mabuza, is an extended cabinet meeting and a critical component in the preparation of the State of the Nation address. Ramaphosa called for the creation of an economy that will provide opportunities for women, young people and millions of unemployed South Africans. He also reiterated government’s prioritisation of education and health, saying the education system should enable pupils to take advantage of opportunities in digital transformation. The lekgotla is attended by cabinet ministers, deputy ministers, premiers, MECs and leaders of the SA Local Government Association.

Tshwane mayor Msimanga resigns

Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga has officially resigned, the Tshwane council speaker said announced on Thursday. This follows an ANC threat to call for a motion of no confidence in Msimanga at the first council sitting of the year. "We received an urgent motion from the ANC and I further received a resignation letter from the executive mayor, Solly Msimanga," said speaker Katlego Mathebe. Msimanga announced his resignation two weeks ago to concentrate on being the DA's Gauteng premier candidate in the forthcoming elections. The resignation letter is dated February 11 2019.

Dam levels dropping in drought-hit EC

High temperatures and exceedingly hot days have resulted in the dam levels in the Eastern Cape dropping drastically owing to evaporation, the government warned on Thursday. A weekly water report by the department of water and sanitation indicates that the province’s dam levels have dropped from 57.4% to 56.0%, a decrease of 1.4%. The department is appealing to people to use water wisely and report leaks in their areas.

Disabled teen ‘sold into marriage’ to man, 61

The uncle of a mentally disabled teenager who was sold into marriage at the age of 13 to a 61-year-old man is to stand trial for human trafficking in Port Elizabeth. The uncle and two women allegedly involved in trafficking the child appeared in the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth on Wednesday. The teen, whose mother died when she was nine, was informed in November 2016 that she would not be going back to school at Bizana in the Eastern Cape. The 61-year-old man from Greenbushes in Port Elizabeth had already entered into lobola negotiations with her uncle and she was to be married. The "husband" is facing an additional charge of rape. The trial has been set for March 11.

Scramble to fix ‘ticking time bomb’ dam wall

Repairs to the partially collapsed wall of Middle Lake in Benoni, east of Johannesburg, are under way. Phase one is expected to be completed by Monday at an estimated cost of between R1.8m and R2m, excluding VAT. Ekurhuleni metro spokesperson Themba Gadebe said the first phase of repairs had to do mostly with addressing the risk of potential failure of the dam. The huge dam, which borders the N12 highway, collapsed on December 23 2018, causing panic among residents. It is one of four along the N12 that are used as recreational facilities by locals. Gadebe said they expected to complete all repairs in six months, provided there were no major floods or further failures.

Mpum Bitcoin ‘kidnappers’ remain behind bars

Two men alleged to have kidnapped a Witbank boy and demanded Bitcoins in exchange for his safe return will spend the next few months behind bars as they await trial. The pair appeared in the Witbank Magistrate's Court on January 24. Their case was postponed to April 17. The NPA's Monica Nyuswa said on Thursday the men appeared on charges of kidnapping and extortion, and were denied bail. They are allegedly behind the kidnapping of a Witbank teenager, and the attempted kidnapping of a girl from Middelburg. They appeared in court in the Middleburg matter and were granted R1,000 bail, but remain in custody as a result of the Witbank case.
A man skates on a frozen river near the CBD in Beijing.
RED ICE A man skates on a frozen river near the CBD in Beijing.
Image: Reuters/Stringer

THE VISUAL SIDE


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

WORLD

THE NEWS YOU DON'T NORMALLY GET TO HEAR

‘Brutal and evil’: Rose West’s lawyer reveals what she was really like

The English serial killer had many unexpected sides to her character that still haunt him

By Cara McGoogan
4 min read

‘Eavesdropping’ glitch adds to many troubles bugging Apple

Apple built a reputation on the rarity of such mistakes, but that perception is now hanging on a balance

By James Titcomb
5 min read

Brekking news: breakfast isn’t the most important meal after all

It might not be a good strategy for weight loss - in fact, you could end up weighing more, new research reveals

By Laura Donnelly
4 min read

‘Stick your job’: Graduate says interviewer was like an abusive ex

She says she was baffled to be offered the position after company chief tore into her personality

By Helena Horton
2 min read

SNAPSHOT

6 things you need to know about the world

Lovers run into trap when they go Commando

The head of Love Commandos, an organisation that offers shelter to runaway lovers, has been arrested in Delhi for extortion and abuse of desperate couples, officials said on Thursday. The group became well known for providing safe houses and legal advice to couples who defied family, religious and caste pressures to get married in conservative India. Love Commandos founder Sanjoy Sachdev was arrested on Tuesday night after police raided one of the shelter homes with members from the Delhi Commission of Women (DCW) and freed four couples. "It was observed that (Sachdev) was indulging in illegal confinement and extortion of the couples behind the facade of providing a safe home to the victims," the DCW, an official body, said. – AFP

Anglophile puts fizz into champers row

The head of one of France's most illustrious champagne houses has weighed into a centuries-old debate about the origin of the sparkling wine by saying "it was invented by the English". Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger, head of Taittinger Champagne, made the comment in an interview with Le Figaro newspaper. "I love England, it's a big market for bubbles. They love champagne," said Taittinger, 65, an unabashed Anglophile. "They created champagne because of a mistake. Benedictine monks were supplying them with still wines from Champagne, red and white wines. The English left these inexpensive still white wines on the London docks and they got cold, so they started undergoing a second fermentation [causing them to become carbonated]. Like all great mistakes, it led to a great invention," he declared. – © The Daily Telegraph

Fear wears a leash in Tehran

Iran has banned dog walking in the capital city of Tehran in an attempt to discourage people completely from owning the pets. Hossein Rahimi, Tehran's police chief, said: "We have received permission from the Tehran prosecutor's office, and will take measures against people walking dogs in public spaces, such as parks.” Measures could include confiscation and fines. Rahimi told the Young Journalists Club news agency that the ban was due to dogs "creating fear and anxiety" among members of the public. He added that driving with a dog in your car was also banned. – © The Daily Telegraph

A canoodle is worth 17 lashes

Two teenagers were whipped in Indonesia's Aceh province on Thursday after they were caught cuddling in public - a crime under the conservative region's Islamic law. Flogging is used as punishment for a range of offences in the region at the tip of Sumatra island, including gambling, drinking alcohol, and having gay sex or relations outside of marriage. Hundreds of spectators watched as a university student and her boyfriend, both 18, were whipped 17 times each outside a mosque in the provincial capital Banda Aceh. A 35-year-old man was also flogged with a rattan cane for being intimate with a 40-year-old woman in a local grocery store. All four had served several months in prison before the punishment. – AFP

Iron Lady still isn’t safe at home

A statue of former prime minister Margaret Thatcher in her home town of Grantham will require a high plinth to curb the threat of vandalism, police have said. Plans to install the £300,000 statue on a 10ft-high platform will be voted on next week amid fears it could become a "likely target for politically-motivated vandals". However, the police added that despite a "motivated far-left movement … who may be committed to public activism" who are against Mrs Thatcher "the passage of time does seem to have diminished that feeling". Members of the South Kesteven District Council's development management committee will vote on the proposals next Tuesday after the idea had 17 objections and seven people writing in support. – © The Daily Telegraph

New Yorkers spy killer KGB gadgets

It was perhaps the most murderous and feared secret service in the world, its name alone sent shivers down the spines of the Soviet Union's enemies. Now, in a development unimaginable during the Cold War, Americans can view the killer contraptions and surveillance techniques the KGB developed to use against them. At a museum in a fashionable part of New York, ingeniously evil weapons like lipstick guns and a replica of the poison-tipped umbrella reportedly used to murder Georgi Markov, the Bulgarian dissenter, in London in 1978, are on display, along with myriad recording devices including tape recorders hidden in the soles of shoes, and cameras disguised as coat buttons. Visitors to the new KGB Spy Museum can even have themselves strapped into a genuine Soviet-era restraining chair and have a photograph taken to post on social media. – © The Daily Telegraph
A groom leads his horse in the equine pool during a training session in Mumbai.
AQUESTRIAN A groom leads his horse in the equine pool during a training session in Mumbai.
Image: Reuters/Danish Siddiqui

THE BUSINESS

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Is that really life we see in the JSE listed property index?

After the worst annual performance in more than two decades, the sector beat all comers in January

By Alistair Anderson
3 min read

Rocket from the crypt: What breathed Group Five into life?

Ghoulish scenes as zombie construction stock rises nearly 60% this week for little to no concrete reason

By Siseko Njobeni
1 min read

A comfortable winner in the tattered JSE furniture sector

Unfancied Lewis dodged credit squeeze by buying the UFO chain that sells furniture and appliances for cash

By Larry Claasen
1 min read

LIFESTYLE

CULTURE COMES ALIVE

Won’t you take us to the bioscope?

The films opening in our cinemas this week

By Critics’ choice
4 min read

‘Funny Girl’ cracks Richard E Grant up all over again

A letter he sent Barbra Streisand when he was 14 finally got a response, bringing the old luvvie to tears

By The Daily Telegraph
1 min read

Now Disneyland brings you a truly otherworldly experience

New ‘Star Wars’ ride could be half an hour long

By Zola Zingithwa
1 min read

SPORT

FINISH LINE ESSENTIALS

SPORTS DAY: SA adds piquant flavour to French Cup Final

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
Journalist
4 min read

Nobody’s laughing any more at Benni McCarthy’s chances

What a breath of fresh air he has brought to the Premier Soccer League, both on and off the pitch 

By Nick Said
3 min read

Blasts from the past: Hekkie hoiks Diaz out the park

Today in SA sports history: February 1

David Isaacson
Journalist
1 min read