Tuesday, October 1 2019



Crime Intelligence fund was a bottomless piggy bank for graft, Zondo hears

Whistleblower explains how ex-spy boss Richard Mdluli got friends and family hired as 'agents'

Amil Umraw
7 min read

The state is to blame for SA’s pricey medical aid. This is why

Competition Commission lists the reasons why the government has failed, and what it should do to fix things

4 min read
Ideas FREE

The DA is drowning in a soup of politics, patronage and predators

Amid all the noise, we have to ask the DA: is that it? A sponsored Fortuner, and maybe a rental in the burbs?

Tom Eaton
4 min read



SA’s wealth brigade are packing for Plett

Semigrating families looking for a more wholesome environment are heading for the Garden Route town

2 min read

My body, my choice, my art, so no more painting with the shame brush

As SA women’s right to abortion comes ever more under threat, these artists are highlighting the issue

Sue de Groot
4 min read

It had better rain this summer or we’re in serious trouble

Experts warn severe drought in the western parts of SA has dire consequences for the rest of the country

Alex Patrick
4 min read

The town where children fight for a drink of water from a drain

Graaff-Reinet is in crisis as its dam has dried up and poor borehole maintenance forces its people to rely on tankers

Alex Patrick
4 min read


Workers clean a red carpet before a wreath-laying in Tiananmen Square, Beijing, marking the 70 years since the founding of China.
NEAT STRIDES Workers clean a red carpet before a wreath-laying in Tiananmen Square, Beijing, marking the 70 years since the founding of China.
Image: Reuters/Thomas Peter

Six things about SA you need to know

Ship gets nod to transport 60,000 sheep

The Al Shuwaikh, the controversial ship that has been docked in East London harbour for 11 days, has been given a clean bill of health to export sheep to Kuwait. There was some confusion on Monday whether a final export permit had been granted, but that is only expected to take place later in the week, pending the department of rural development and agrarian reform's veterinary services giving final sign-off on 61,000 sheep meeting the required health standards for export. Department spokesperson Ayongezwa Lungisa said the vessel “met all the requirements” to transport the sheep. Lungisa said veterinary services had been dispatched to ascertain if the sheep were carrying diseases or ticks and had the necessary vaccinations. Should the animals be found to be in order, an export permit could be granted later this week.

Mixed bag of petrol, diesel and paraffin prices

South Africans will have to pay more for 95 octane petrol and diesel from Wednesday. The department of energy confirmed that from October 2, the price of 93 petrol - both unleaded and lead replacement - will decrease by 4c per litre. However, 95 octane unleaded petrol will increase by 18c per litre, diesel (0.05% sulphur) by 25c per litre, diesel (0.005% sulphur) by 25c per litre, and illuminating paraffin by 25c per litre. The LP gas retail price will decrease by 17c per kilogram. Mineral resources and energy minister Gwede Mantashe said the main reason for the increases was higher oil prices during the period under review. Oil prices rose sharply after drones attacked two major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia on September 14.

Truck burnt, roads blockaded in Cape protests

A truck was set alight and several roads were blocked with burning tyres in Cape Town on Monday afternoon. City of Cape Town traffic spokesperson Maxine Bezuidenhout said the protests - which affected Potsdam Road, Malibongwe and Killarney Avenue, PG Drive and Vrygrond - were because of law enforcement demolishing illegal structures. Monday’s violence came after residents from the Dunoon and Joe Slovo townships stoned cars and set a MyCiTi bus alight on Saturday. Mayoral committee member for transport Felicity Purchase said the Phoenix MyCiTi station was vandalised, looted and set alight in Friday’s unrest, which also saw the N7 closed several times as stones rained down on vehicles. Purchase said repairs to MyCiTi infrastructure would cost millions and take months.

KZN spring snow brings big chill

Parts of the Drakensberg were sprinkled with snow on Monday, with more expected on Tuesday. The SA Weather Service said the southern part of the mountain range received light snow on Monday. “We haven’t seen anything above 2cm. We have on and off snowfall the entire day for Lesotho and the southern Drakensberg,” said forecaster Wayne Venter. “It looks like some good snowfall in the northern and northeast Drakensberg, on the KZN border side.” Venter predicted 10cm-15cm of snow for Monday, while more was expected in the same region on Tuesday. It would be colder over the interior of the province, with temperatures falling to between 13ºC and 16ºC on Monday.

Residents dump rubbish on council doorstep

"Fed-up” residents dumped their rubbish on the Newcastle municipal office’s doorstep after receiving notice that refuse collection was on hold. “I don't think that anyone would be picking it up because the refuse workers are on strike,” one resident said on Monday. The northern KZN town has been plagued by a municipal strike which left residents without services. “We are just fed up. There are no services in this town. Our rubbish is piling up. It felt good to dump those bags," another resident said. On Friday, the municipality said on Facebook refuse collection was “currently on hold” due to unplanned industrial action. Municipal spokesperson Dumisani Thabethe could not be reached for comment.

Doctor ‘clocks 229km/h’ in Boksburg

Fourteen people, including a doctor, were arrested in Ekurhuleni for speeding over the weekend. They were nabbed in various operations. Three drivers were arrested for allegedly doing between 140 and 160km/h on the N3 south on Friday. On Saturday, five drivers, including a doctor, were arrested in the Boksburg area, between the Griffiths on-ramp and the N12 bridge southbound. The 32-year-old doctor allegedly clocked 229km/h in a white BMW, claiming he was rushing home. The other four were nabbed for allegedly doing between 150 and 160km/h, saying they were late for work. On Sunday morning six people were arrested on the N12 east, between the Reading interchange (R59) and the Voortrekker off-ramp.The drivers allegedly clocked between 161 and 181km/h. All 14 were charged with reckless and negligent driving and are expected to appear in the Palmridge and Boksburg magistrate’s courts.


Police are investigating a case of robbery after CCTV footage captured a man being robbed of his R50,000 Rolex watch at a McDonald's outlet in Boksburg on September 25.



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



Want to save the planet? Going vegan or cutting flights won’t help

So says author David Wallace-Wells, who is not your typical climate activist

By Simon Heffer
7 min read

Thigh jinx: Boris in tight squeeze over claims he fondled journo

The UK prime minister faces questions over groping incident at a ‘louche, loud, risqué’ magazine lunch

By Owen Bennet and Camilla Tominey
3 min read

Big brands buy palm oil from the world’s ‘orangutan capital’

On top of that, Unilever, Nestlé and other giants are getting it from a high-priority conservation area in Indonesia

By Michael Taylor
5 min read

Spies’ anger at ‘corrosive’ Le Carre will not stay undercover

A former spy reckons the author has an ‘obsession’ with his brief career in espionage

By Tony Diver
4 min read


Faith and Rusty Wall compete in the 2019 Surf City Surf Dog contest in Huntington Beach, California.
HUNTING THE PERFECT WAVES Faith and Rusty Wall compete in the 2019 Surf City Surf Dog contest in Huntington Beach, California.
Image: Kyle Grillot/AFP

6 things you need to know about the world

Elvis steals vagina from sex shop

A man bearing a strong resemblance to Elvis Presley has been accused of stealing a fake vagina from a New Zealand sex shop, prompting a police investigation. The Elvis lookalike allegedly stole the prosthesis from the Peaches and Cream sex store in suburban Auckland after a failed attempt to buy it. "He was very energetic and erratic, going around the shop, talking a lot … he brought a sex toy called “Like a Virgin” up to the counter but his card declined," staff member Kat Maher told stuff.co.nz. Maher said the man - whose Elvis-like characteristics included slicked-back black hair and large sunglasses, incongruously teamed with a high-visibility vest - then ran out of the shop with the NZ$100 (R940) sex toy in hand. – AFP

Shoppers not impressed by free porn

The New Zealand arm of Japanese sports brand Asics has apologised after pornography was broadcast on large TV screens above its central Auckland store for several hours, startling Sunday-morning shoppers. Pornography played on the retailer's outdoor screens for up to nine hours - until staff arrived at the shop at about 10am on Sunday and switched them off, the New Zealand Herald reported. "Some people were shocked, but others just stopped and watched," security guard Dwayne Hinango told the newspaper. The explicit content was "totally inappropriate and offensive" and "not something you want kids exposed to", said Tanya Lee, who had walked past with her seven-year-old son. Asics New Zealand said in a Facebook post that an unknown person had gained access to its televisions. - AFP

Man jailed over Singapore HIV data leak

An American man who leaked confidential details of thousands of HIV-positive people in Singapore, most of them foreigners, has been jailed in the US for two years. Mikhy Farrera Brochez was convicted by a Kentucky court in June for trying to extort the Singapore government using the stolen data. The 34-year-old had obtained the data from his partner, a senior Singaporean doctor who also helped Brochez conceal his HIV-positive status to get a work permit for the city-state. Confidential information including the names and addresses of 14,200 people diagnosed with the virus was dumped online. The leak caused anxiety among those with HIV, who have long complained of facing prejudice in socially conservative Singapore. Brochez was sentenced to 24 months in federal prison on Friday, said the US Attorney's Office. – AFP

Burp-buster a moo way to fight warming

Dutch speciality chemicals company DSM is expecting strong demand for its food additive which limits the amount of methane burped into the air by cows, its contribution to the global fight against climate change. Methane has a much larger effect on global warming than carbon dioxide (CO2) and reducing methane emissions could buy time to confront the much bigger challenge of cutting the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere. "We see a lot of demand already, from food producers and farmers", DSM's Clean Cow programme director Mark van Nieuwland said, even though the launch of the additive, Bovaer, is still more than a year away. – Reuters

French scorn wilts giant tulips

US pop artist Jeff Koons says he was "saddened" by the negative reaction in France to a controversial sculpture he had gifted to Paris after the 2015 terror attacks on the city. Koons's 12m tall "Bouquet of Tulips" will be inaugurated on Friday, ending a four-year row over its location. It features a hand holding a huge bunch of multicoloured tulips, a gesture intended to mimic how the figure in the Statue of Liberty grasps her torch. Koons created it after being asked to come up with a work symbolising America's solidarity with France in the wake of the attacks, which left 130 people dead. But the site, outside the Palais de Tokyo contemporary art museum, ran into resistance from artists, gallery owners and officials, who said it smacked of "product placement" by a artist known for his "spectacular and speculative" works. Others argued it would block views of the Eiffel Tower. – AFP

Far-right arms seizures soar

The German government is to give police greater powers following a steep rise in weapons seizures during raids on far-Right extremists. Almost 1,100 weapons were confiscated in the course of investigations into Right-wing crime in 2018, marking a 61 per cent rise on the previous year, new statistics show. Horst Seehofer, the interior minister, said the figures represent an "alarming increase", but vowed: "I am determined to strengthen the security services both in personnel and in structure and to give them the necessary legal tools to cope with this threat." he said. The veteran law-and-order man has previously faced criticism from civil liberties groups for introducing sweeping police powers in his native Bavaria, which included abolishing time limits on police detentions. The weapons listed as being seized during raids in 2018 included handguns, rifles and knives, as well as pepper spray, fireworks and "dangerous tools". – © Telegraph Media Group Limited (2019)



A leader also follows, just not rules or algorithms

Technical competence may be a necessary pre-qualifier, but it is not a test of leadership

By Mark Barnes
4 min read

Trencor shareholders can barely contain themselves

Share price spikes as unbundling of value-destroying holding in US-owned Textainer edges nearer

By Ann Crotty
1 min read

ACL has been through the mill but more squeezes lie ahead

ArcelorMittal SA is hoarding cash, taking a hard look at its cost base, and may close some operations

By Siseko Njobeni
1 min read



Bookmarks: Harry escapades and the Moore the merrier

A fortnightly look at books, writers, and reviews

By Andrew Donaldson
9 min read

Just for the record: Alabama Shakes, rattle and rock ’n’ roll

A fortnightly look at music on vinyl

By Andrew Donaldson
10 min read

Book extract: ‘Leaving Word’, a sassy literary mystery

Was Buddy murdered? Did he commit suicide? Maybe he just died. Maybe life doesn’t always have a plot

By Steven Boykey Sidley
5 min read

Mutts ado about ‘Dancers Love Dogs’ charity show

Annual multi-genre showcase raises funds for animal welfare groups and vets to sterilise homeless hounds

By Allison Foat
1 min read



SPORTS DAY: Tau and Hazard square up in Champs League

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Mninawa Ntloko
Sports editor
3 min read

Vuvuzela leaps from stadium to street to blow away crime

Armed with SA’s singular plastic trumpets, Sowetan men unite to fight street crime against women

By Kim Harrisberg
3 min read