Tuesday, June 11 2019




Two laptops for 1,000 pupils – how’s that for a smart school!

The multimillion-rand ‘smart school’ has no library, no laboratories and no walkways

2 min read

Rinse and set-up: Hairdresser nicked our cards, claim clients

Lowveld coiffeur accused of pilfering clients' store cards says he was bamboozled by his thieving boyfriend

3 min read

‘It’s chaos’: Doctors, nurses work in fear of their lives

Despite shootings and rapes, the government ignores pleas to fix security at hospitals, says Sama

5 min read



It was wurst, but German firm won Transnet tender

Ex-Transnet chief information officer tells Zondo how T-Systems won R2bn tender, despite SA company being better

Amil Umraw
3 min read

Packham loving and caring?! He’s an ice-cold killer, says state

As daughter sobs, defence and prosecution paint very different portraits of wife-killer at his sentencing hearing

By Sumin Woo
3 min read

We’re terrified of the highway to hell, say truckers

Truck attacks have taken a toll on SA’s economy, roads and most importantly the drivers

Orrin Singh
4 min read

State agency, Limpopo in fight over broadband tender

Provincial government awarded the project without its approval, State Information Technology Agency says

3 min read

The world agrees it owes disabled CEO a lot of credit

The first South African to win the international award is adamant the world owes her nothing

3 min read



Dear SA, Thanks for everything, suckers. You were Ace. Love, the Guptas

Yes, South Africa, there is a silver lining: the brothers give back in gratitude – or something like gratitude

Tom Eaton
4 min read

L is for lesbian, G is for gay: Indian parents learn the ABC of LGBT

While coming out is still not easy, some parents are swimming against the heavy tide of tradition

By Roli Srivastava
6 min read

The boys and joys of a divorceé looking for love at 57

After my divorce, I was a ‘charity case’ until 2015 when everything changed

By Josa Keyes
6 min read


A model presents a creation during the University of Westminster MA catwalk show at London Men's Fashion Week.
he apparently has an inflated opinion of himself A model presents a creation during the University of Westminster MA catwalk show at London Men's Fashion Week.
Image: Henry Nicholls/Reuters

Six things about SA you need to know

Cwele, Radebe join list of MP resignations

Former minister of intelligence and home affairs Siyabonga Cwele and former minister of justice and energy Jeff Radebe have resigned as ANC members of parliament, parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said on Monday. Cwele and Radebe join former ministers Susan Shabangu, Nomaindia Mfeketho and Dipuo Letsatsi-Duba, who resigned last week. Radebe was, for the first time since the advent of democracy, left out of the national executive when President Cyril Ramaphosa announced his new cabinet. He last served as energy minister. Cwele has served as minister of intelligence, with his last stint in the national executive being minister of home affairs - but he also failed to make the cut in the new executive. It is not immediately clear where the two are headed.

School stabbing suspect granted R5,000 bail

The pupil who allegedly killed Grade 8 pupil Daniel Bakwela and injured two others outside Forest High School in Turffontein, Johannesburg, is set to be released after a week in police custody. The Johannesburg Magistrate's Court agreed to bail of R5,000 on Monday. Grade 11 pupil Mohammed Moela, 20, told the court at a previous appearance that he was acting in self-defence after a gang-related altercation. Magistrate Basimame Molwana said on Monday the interests of justice permitted that Moela be granted bail. "Bail is, however, granted at R5,000, not at R500 as previously asked." His bail conditions includes that he relocates to an alternative address, does not visit the Turffontein area, does not interfere with state witnesses, must surrender his passport and may not leave the country without consulting the investigating officer. Bakwela’s family was unhappy with the decision.

Maimane urges protector to release Cyril report

DA leader Mmusi Maimane is demanding that public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane releases her investigation report into President Cyril Ramaphosa and his alleged relations with controversial company Bosasa no later than Wednesday. Maimane on Monday urged Mkhwebane to release the report in order to curb leaks and speculation following weekend news reports indicating that she made an adverse finding against the president. Maimane said the release of the report in question was six months overdue, the complaint having been raised late in 2018 by the DA and the EFF. The investigation is over a R500,000 donation from Bosasa CEO Gavin Watson to Ramaphosa’s ANC presidency election campaign.

Police stoned in ‘lawless’ Joburg CBD

Police were pelted with rocks in the Johannesburg inner city on Sunday after a raid to seize counterfeit goods. Gauteng police spokesperson Brigadier Mathapelo Peters said the officers were confiscating counterfeit goods at the Madiba Building on the corner of Jeppe and Von Wielligh streets when they were attacked. "While no law enforcement members sustained injuries, an unconfirmed number of police vehicles were damaged and barriers set alight," said Peters. Footage of the incident shows residents throwing rocks at police vehicles. Roads in the area were also barricaded.

‘War zone’ W Cape rocked by 14 murders

Western Cape residents are living in a “war zone”, community safety MEC Albert Fritz said on Monday in reaction to the murder of 14 people within the space of a week. “War is commonly defined … as an act of conflict that has claimed more than 1,000 lives. In the Western Cape, 1,875 people were murdered in the past six months alone,” he said. Blikkiesdorp, Athlone and Mitchells Plain residents have endured a week of terror as separate shooting incidents claimed 14 lives. Provincial police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Andrè Traut said that motive had yet to be established for one incident that left five people dead in Blikkiesdorp, a temporary relocation area consisting of tin shacks in Delft. Fritz said he would be requesting an urgent meeting with police minister Bheki Cele to discuss the ongoing murders.

Admin delays stall Kohler Barnard case

An unfair-discrimination case against DA MP Dianne Kohler Barnard was postponed on Monday for a hearing in July. Kohler Barnard’s lawyer, Michael Tsele, requested the postponement, saying he had not had a proper opportunity to prepare as witness statements which were supposed to be filed last month had not been filed. Tsele told the Equality Court this meant he was severely incapacitated. The DA's former director of parliamentary operations, Louw Nel, approached the court earlier in 2019, accusing Kohler Barnard of making "discriminatory utterances" during a workshop attended by DA staff members in parliament to discuss a safety and security strategy. Nel said he had found Kohler Barnard's comments to be racist, sexist and xenophobic in nature. While Kohler Barnard does not deny making the statements, she argued in her responding affidavit that Nel omitted the context in which her comments were made, and that Nel misquoted her or that his accusations were simply contrived.


A video of a father and his young son pretending to have a full-blown conversation has gone viral. The video, which was uploaded to Facebook by the toddler's mother, shows the little one, who cannot speak yet, having a full conversation with his father.



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



Fabulous! Americans would choose a gay president over an old one

And this doesn't bode well for Trump as he inches towards his 73rd birthday

By Chris Kahn
3 min read

Policy and foreign police: why a million protesters engulfed Hong Kong

The idea of Hong Kong being a refuge for Chinese fugitives has never been high up the agenda until now

3 min read

Heroes in a bog: The story of the first transatlantic flight

Here's a look back at Captain John Alcock and Lieutenant Arthur Whitten Brown's historic feat 100 years ago

3 min read

A 10-minute prostate scan gives ‘peace of mind’ for life

The new MRI technique should enable the world’s first universal screening programme for prostate cancer

By Henry Bodkin
2 min read


Firefighters work on burning block of flats in Barking, London.
NIMBLE ON HIS NIMBUS Firefighters work on burning block of flats in Barking, London.
Image: Reuters/Simon Dawson

6 things you need to know about the world

A swarm of biblical proportions

Millions of locusts have devastated at least 2,000 hectares of crops in Sardinia, Italian farmers union Coldiretti said on Monday, with experts calling the invasion the worst in six decades. The most affected areas are Nuoro, Ottana and Orani in the middle of the Mediterranean island, with many areas blanketed by the insects, Coldiretti said. The invasion is the worst in the area in 60 years, local entomologist Ignazio Floris told the La Stampa daily. The insect explosion is linked to a sharp rise in temperatures after a relatively cold May, with many of the young insects emerging from uncultivated land. Cultivating land for crops discourages the insects laying their eggs in the autumn and prevents them reaching maturity in the summer warmth. "The locusts emerge on uncultivated land but then they go to cultivated land to eat," said Coldiretti, adding that there is no current solution to the invasion. – AFP

Symbol of Trump-Macron bond dies

The photo of Donald Trump and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron planting an oak tree in the garden of the White House symbolised the friendship shown by the two leaders. But relations between them have since frayed and the tree, a diplomatic source said this week, did not survive. Macron offered the young oak to Trump during a state visit to Washington in 2018, and the two shovelled dirt around it under the watchful eyes of the world. It was a symbolic gesture: the tree came from a northern French forest where 2,000 US Marines died during World War 1. But a few days later, it was nowhere to be seen, having disappeared into quarantine. "It is a quarantine which is mandatory for any living organism imported into the US," Gerard Araud, then the French ambassador to America, wrote on Twitter. But it died during its quarantine, the diplomatic source said. – AFP

Here’s a bitter reality check

If you’re talking vitamin D and expecting it to lower your risk of getting type 2 diabetes when you get older, it’s time to lower your expectations. A new study, the largest of its kind, has found that taking 4,000 international units per day, which is on the upper limit of the recommended intake, may double the amount of vitamin D in the blood but it gives most people roughly the same chance of developing blood sugar problems as people who don’t take the vitamin. – Reuters

Snap-happy tourists get in everywhere

In a remote valley in Pakistan dozens of Kalash minority women dance to celebrate spring’s arrival — but as a gaggle of men scramble to catch them on camera, locals warn that an influx of domestic tourists is threatening their unique traditions. Every year the Kalash — a group of fewer than 4,000 people confined to a handful of villages in the north — greet the new season with animal sacrifices, baptisms, and weddings at a festival known as “Joshi”. Tourists with phones jostle to get close to Kalash women, whose vibrant clothing and headdresses contrast starkly with the more modest attire worn by many in the conservative Islamic republic. “Some people are using their cameras as if they were in a zoo,” said tour guide Iqbal Shah. The Kalash worship many gods, drinking alcohol is a tradition, and marriages of choice are the norm — unlike in the rest of Pakistan. – AFP

Around the world in seven years

It was four years ago when Jacky Chen embarked upon a challenge after quitting his job as an electronics engineer: riding his bicycle across the world. The 40-year-old Taiwanese man has now traversed the Americas, Europe and parts of the Middle East, sleeping in his tent or finding places to rest his head through apps like Couchsurfing. In recent days Chen has been in Jerusalem, taking in the sights and plotting his next rides on his red and black Merida Wolf 3 cycle. "This is an adventure," he said of his reasons for setting out on the journey, which has so far taken him to 64 countries and across about 54,000km. He hopes to visit 100 countries and travel 100,000km before he's done and estimates it will take him about another three years. – AFP

No more free telly for oldies

Pensioners in Britain who have watched television for free will have to start paying after the publicly funded BBC said it would scrap free access for those older than 75. The BBC, which is funded by a tax on all television-watching households, said about 3.7 million pensioners who previously received a free TV licence could have to pay when its new rules come into force in June 2020. The BBC agreed a funding settlement with the government and in 2015 it had to take over the cost of providing free licences for over-75s by 2020 as part of its latest funding round. - Reuters



Only the state can prise the poor from the jaws of loan sharks

If only it used what it spent on the relief of unemployment, poverty and inequality, to create wealth-enabling capital

By Mark Barnes
4 min read

European boom is a real big boon for SA investors

There are real estate companies sitting on piles of cash with which they can reward South Africans

By Alistair Anderson
1 min read

Sigh of relief as new platinum player rides into town

But there's more than wage talks and consolidation for Sibanye to consider after Lonmin takeover

By Allan Seccombe
1 min read



Bookmarks: A Wolff at Trump’s door, crying Wolf ... and a red dog

A fortnightly look at books, writers and reviews

By Andrew Donaldson
11 min read

We could all use a little financial help right now

Book extract: Make Your Money Work For You

By Jennifer Platt
7 min read

When she entered the interior to write, it was by design

Interior designer Nthabi Taukobong writes about the inspiration for her book, The Real Interior

By Jennifer Platt
2 min read

The D-Day artist history forgot: Remembering Albert Richards

Had he lived, he might have become one of the great artists of the 20th century. As it is, he is now forgotten

By Ged Clarke
6 min read



SPORTS DAY: Big World Cup goal eclipses Banyana loss

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

David Isaacson
Sports reporter
5 min read

Why Gerda Steyn’s Comrades win warms the heart so much more

The race does the punishing, but in her case the race suffered - but for a good and wonderful reason

Khanyiso Tshwaku
Sports reporter
3 min read

Blast from the past: Payback time for Boks against England

Today in SA sports history: June 11

By David Isaacson
1 min read