Wednesday, March 20 2019



Eskom has its lightbulb moment - after 12 years

They say they are doing their very best, and I’m sure that by 2037 they’ll understand load-shedding must be stopped

Tom Eaton
2 min read

Keep SA’s lights on? We’re too busy having fun

It's much easier for the government to busy itself with transformation bling than with maintaining infrastructure

Tony Leon
5 min read

While SA is still in the dark about the future of Eskom's load-shedding crisis, the state-owned entity battles to maintain the power supply. Here's what you need to know about Eskom's cost to South Africans.

Minister of public enterprises Pravin Gordhan briefed the media on Tuesday on the daily load-shedding currently affecting South Africa. He attempted to assure everyone that Eskom was working hard to keep the lights on.



Underworld: Zama-zamas hold jobseekers hostage

The kidnappers demanded ransom from the captives’ families

Bongani Fuzile
3 min read

Civil servants’ roaring illegal trade

State employees are siphoning off billions through the unlawful awarding of tenders, an auditor-general report reveals

Mpumzi Zuzile
2 min read



Think Cyril can fix SA? Let’s have a reality check

He remains shackled to the ANC, within which his biggest enemies will always be waiting to trip him up

Ranjeni Munusamy
Associate editor: analysis
6 min read

Battered, bruised, but KZN ANC ‘will roar’ in poll

Not even murder, fraud or infighting can thwart the ANC's victory in KZN, says a political analyst

4 min read

‘My truth needs to be told’: Cheryl Zondi won’t back down

She says she is ready for another round in the Omotoso trial because of the confidence SA has shown in her

By Devon Koen
4 min read

Salt to injury: Clinic ‘chases out’ motorbike crash patient

A nurse allegedly told the victim not to come back and rather change the wound dressings at home

4 min read

Drug-sniffer dog shot by cop lives to fight another day

She was gravely wounded when she was shot by a cop in an incident that raises more questions than answers

Jeff Wicks
2 min read

Forest bathing, squirrels, green lungs: what SA home buyers want

With more people looking to return to a more wholesome way of living, eco-living is a big thing, say property experts

2 min read



Cheers! Why Bonang Matheba is SA’s only true celebrity

Queen B has a story and a fantasy that she’s selling, she has an image: she is glamour, she is sass, she is success

By Pearl Boshomane Tsotetsi
3 min read

Winklevoss twins: What we’re up to now will be bigger than Facebook

The ‘testosterone twins’ have moved on from the Facebook debacle and believe they’re on to something even bigger

By Margi Murphy
6 min read

TV sex has become a turn-off, in more ways than one. This is why

Small-screen rogering needs to get off all fours and show some sensuality

By Rowan Pelling
6 min read

Should doctors burst into tears at work? Over my dead body!

It only blurs the boundary between doctor as detached professional and patient as suffering client, a doctor insists

By Dr Michel Fitzpatrick
2 min read



Striking police officers marched to parliament under the banner of the SA Police and Allied Workers Union over a list of grievances as hundreds skipped work in Western Cape on Tuesday.
SEE? I ALSO BROUGHT MY GUN Striking police officers marched to parliament under the banner of the SA Police and Allied Workers Union over a list of grievances as hundreds skipped work in Western Cape on Tuesday.
Image: Esa Alexander/Sunday Times

Six things about SA you need to know

Mayor accused of murder to stay in custody

The mayor of the Harry Gwala municipality in KZN, Mluleki Ndobe, will remain in police custody until his bail application. Ndobe, 41, appeared in the Umzimkhulu Magistrate's Court on Tuesday with co-accused, Sbonelo Myeza, 39, Mbulelo Mpofana, 34, and Zweliphansi Skhosana, 48, for the 2017 murder of ANC Youth League Leader Sindiso Magaqa. The matter was remanded to March 25 and 26 for a formal bail application. The state confirmed that all four accused are facing one count of murder, alleging that they had acted in "common purpose" in having premeditated the murder of Magaqa. They also face two counts of attempted murder. According to the charge sheet, the second and third counts relate to the attempted murder of Jabulile Msiya and Nontsikelelo Mafa on July 13 2017 – the day Magaqa was gunned down. Prosecutor Sohana Moodley said more arrests were imminent.

Woman crashes Merc into her own home

A Durban woman ploughed her Mercedes-Benz into her home in Verulam on Tuesday after experiencing a dizzy spell. The woman, 68, and her passenger had to be freed from the wreckage by firefighters. Prem Balram of Reaction Unit SA said the incident occurred in Verulam's busy Wick Street area, near the local metro police station. Balram said the driver suffered head and spinal injuries and was taken to a local hospital. "According to the driver, she was approaching her home when she felt dizzy and weak. Instead of turning into her driveway she suddenly accelerated towards her home. The vehicle ploughed through a wooden barrier before it crashed into the home, which is a few metres below road level," said Balram. The passenger was unharmed.

Blackouts a farming disaster: NSPCA

Load-shedding is hitting farmers and their animals hard, the National Council of SPCAs says. The organisation had "grave concerns" for animals that depended on electricity for survival. "In any intensive farming system animals are dependent on ideal environmental conditions to survive. These conditions often depend on a constant supply of electricity," it said. "Not-ideal conditions lead to stress on the animals which leads to immune system failure, illness and even death. Electricity plays a crucial role in animal farming. Lighting, heating, ventilation, electric motors which run feed lines - electricity is at the core of a productive intensive farming system." Poultry, piggeries and aquaculture were some of the farm types affected.

Man shoots girlfriend, turns gun on himself

A woman is in critical condition after being shot by her boyfriend in Fourways, in Johannesburg north, on Tuesday morning. He shot himself near the Fourways Mall after fleeing the scene, according to emergency services. Police spokesperson Captain Mavela Masondo said the woman was driving on the corner of Cedar Road and Cedar Avenue West when her boyfriend approached her at the intersection and shot her twice in the upper body. She was taken to a nearby hospital in a critical condition. "The boyfriend was later found a few kilometres away from the scene. He committed suicide as he shot himself inside the car,” said Masondo. The motive for the attack is unknown.

Racism victims urged to report evidence on app

Reporting racism is now just an app away, and South Africans are being assured the complaint will be assessed by an experienced human rights team. At an event at Constitutional Hill in Johannesburg on Tuesday, marking Human Rights Month, the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) endorsed the Zimele Racism Reporting App (ZiRRA), which was piloted a year ago by the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation. The app’s development comes after research showed an increase in racism-related incidents across the country. The SAHRC said racism-related complaints made up a big chunk of the complaints it received. The app, says the foundation’s Busisiwe Nkosi, allows people to report all forms of racism and attach any documentation, recordings or footage as evidence to strengthen their case.

Honorary doctorate for ex-IEC chair Bam

Wits University will confer honorary doctorates on former electoral commission chairperson Brigalia Bam and two internationally acclaimed wordsmiths. Bam and globally celebrated SA writers Mandla Langa and the late Chris van Wyk will be awarded honorary doctorates in recognition of their contribution to SA. The doctorates will be conferred on March 27 in the university’s Great Hall. They will be among more than 5,200 graduates who will be capped during Wits’ March graduation season. Wits will also award a University Gold Medal to Wits alumnus and distinguished architect Herbert Prins.




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



‘I Live! I Die!’: Why Kiwis are using the haka to heal after attacks

Maori dance's meaning is far more complex than one would think from just watching the All Blacks perform it

3 min read

Dalai Lama says successor may be Indian, warns of sly China move

Tibet's spiritual leader expects some attempt by Beijing to foist a successor on Tibetan Buddhists

By Krishna N Das and Sunil Kataria
4 min read

‘Racially profiled’ man on the loo got the flight of his life

Airline staff burst in on him while he was on the toilet, all because of his race and faith, passenger claims

2 min read

Caesareans ‘are too sterile a way to enter life, leaving allergic kids’

And this 107-year-old doctor should know, seeing he is the 'grandfather' of allergy research

By Sarah Knapton
2 min read


A couple talks on a frozen river in Russia.
ICY RELATIONS A couple talks on a frozen river in Russia.
Image: Reuters/Ilya Naymushin

6 things you need to know about the world

Artificial island to blow the rest out of the water

Hong Kong plans to build one of the world’s largest artificial islands with a $79bn price tag. The proposal to reclaim 1,000 hectares of land around the territory’s largest island, Lantau, is touted as a solution to the housing shortage in the city. Authorities say they hope to start reclaiming land in 2025, with an eye on moving residents to the island in 2032. – AFP

UK returns Babylonian tablet looted in Iraq War

A 3,000-year-old carved stone tablet from Babylonia, which promises a curse on those who would destroy it, is to be flown home from Britain after being looted during the Iraq War. The British Museum handed over the work to the Iraqi ambassador during a ceremony on Tuesday after experts had verified its provenance. – AFP

They Oslo have violent pupils like in SA?

A pupil attacked school staff in Oslo, Norway, injuring four people. The boy had threatened staff with a breadknife, but inflicted the injuries by biting and stabbing with a knife and a fork from the canteen, police said. The four people were taken to hospital with minor injuries. – Reuters

My three decades are up, president realises

Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev says he’s resigning after three decades. Nazarbayev, 78, has led the nation since 1989. Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, speaker of the upper house of parliament, will take over as the acting president for the remainder of his term. – Reuters

Smells like fascism! Perfume ad sparks online war

A political ad with an Israeli justice minister using ‘fascist’ perfume has drawn outrage. Ayelet Shaked’s ad tries to play on accusations that she has a fascist-like agenda, but many saw the ad as a failure that could be mistaken for an endorsement of fascism. The clip is part of a promotion ahead of elections. – AFP

Asia’s richest man saves rival brother from jail

The epic feud between India’s Ambani brothers took a new twist when the older and richer brother, Mukesh, decided to pay debt owed by his sibling, Anil, helping him avoid jail. The brothers fell out after their father died without a will, leaving them to fight for control of his Reliance conglomerate. – AFP



Steinhoff in parliament: At last, some names are named

Markus Jooste fingered as one of the execs involved in fictitious and irregular transactions of about €6.5bn

By Linda Ensor
5 min read

Why this man is very, very angry about the SA economy

Dawie Roodt peers down at SA from the fiscal cliff

By Chris Gilmour
3 min read

Sibanye: Amcu’s crash course in how not to manage a strike

Union has spurned behind-the-scenes offers from the company and the CCMA to end the four-month strike

By Allan Seccombe
1 min read

Grand Parade: When you can’t run a business, don’t run one

Group’s shift from being a relatively passive investor to having operational control has been a disaster

By Larry Claasen
1 min read



Ancient grains are a bunch of old tosh: I don’t buy the fad

The way they’re farmed and  processed is way more important to Earth’s health and yours than their age

By Andrea Burgener
2 min read

Smart work: How to turn 15 days of leave into 44

Take off a few choice days around public holidays

By Sanet Oberholzer
1 min read

Upcycling: When doing good looks this good, it’s all good

Acclaim for a Cape Town township studio winning Design With Purpose Award using recycled materials

By Jackie May
3 min read



SPORTS DAY: Attack, attack cry Bafana’s Baxter and Lorch

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
4 min read

Ja, this ... THIS ... is what we’ll be up against again, my petals

Will this World Cup be different for the Proteas? If it isn’t it won’t be for want of plotting and planning

Telford Vice
4 min read

Blasts from the past: Robberts puts up with Melbourne gold

Today in SA sports history: March 20

David Isaacson
1 min read