Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Missing Child Alert: Jody-Lynn Plaatjies


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Fire in the Southern Peninsula rages on

Loyiso Langeni
03 March 2015

Cape Town firefighters are still trying to extinguish a fire, which is now on the Chapman’s Peak side and is high up on the slope of the mountain and burning in the direction of Hout Bay.

The fire which started on Sunday in Muizenberg has left on firefighter sustaining burn wounds and fifty-two people treated for smoke inhalation.

City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Spokesperson Theo Layne said on the Tokai Forest Plantation side the fire is burning very slowly due to no wind.

“We are using two helicopters on the Tokai side as well as two on the Chapman’s side. They will be bombing the areas that the fire vehicles and the firefighters cannot get through.” Layne said.  

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WC government to speed up land reform

Mbasa Gqokoma
03 March 2015

A Land Reform Advisory Desk has been established by the Western Cape government in order to speed up land reform and offer guidance to farmers, community organisation and residents.

Western Cape MEC of Economic Opportunities Alan Winde has also welcomed the establishment of the National Department of Rural Development and Land Reform’s district land reform committees.

inisterial Spokesperson Bronwynne Jooste says speeding up land reform is one of Minister Nkwinti’s most priorities.

Jooste said the desk will offer guidance to farmers, community organisations and residence. The Western Cape government wants to make sure that we put our full weight behind all efforts to get variable projects going.

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Monday, March 02, 2015

One million worth of drugs confiscated in Roodepan

Mbasa Gqokoma
02 March 2015

A man in his mid-twenties was arrested by the Roodepan police after he was busted with drugs worth one-million-Rand.
This as police received a tip-off about drug dealing taking place at a house on Canary Street, Roodepan.
Police Spokesperson Lieutenant Olebogeng Tawana said police immediately pounced on the house and started searching it.

Tawana says the drugs were found during stached inside a sound speaker. The suspect was arrested and charged for dealing in drugs.

The suspect will be appearing in court tomorrow on charges of dealing in drugs Tawana added.

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No amount of violence should be tolerated, said Plato

Mbasa Gqokoma

02 March 2015

Western Cape MEC of Community Safety Dan Plato says violence in our society should not be tolerated.

This as over the weekend Khayelitsha residents protested over service delivery and even set fire to a community hall.

The N2 highway was blocked for several hours on Sunday as residents said the City of Cape Town promised them houses and has not delivered.

Ministerial Spokesperson Ewald Botha says Minister Plato feels that there will be no winners when it comes to restructuring of public property and the illegal activity and violence that erupted in Khayelitsha over the weekend.

 A call to members of the community and leaders of the community to remain calm when dealing with grievances of service delivery Botha added.

 

 

 

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Truck driver lost control and died on the spot in Hout Bay

Mbasa Gqokoma
02 March 2015

An accident this morning on Hout Bay Main Road left one person dead. This is after the truck he was driving lost control and overturned.

ER24 Spokesperson Russel Meiring says ER24 paramedics arrived on scene and found the large truck on the side wedged up against a large tree.

Meiring said on assessment paramedics discovered a male driver trapped inside the vehicle. Rescue services had to use the Jaws of Life equipment to free the man in a one hour operation.

"Once freed from the vehicle, paramedics found that the patient had showed no signs of life. Paramedics began CPR and unfortunately after twenty minutes no signs of life returned and the patient was declared dead" Meiring added.

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Raging fire spreading to Hout Bay

Oscar Thomas
02 March 2015

Cape Town firefighters are continuing to try and contain a fire which started in Muizenberg and has not spread to Hout Bay.

Additional firefighters have been deployed to Cape Town as roads including Chapman’s Peak Drive have been closed.

An old age home and certain homes based on the fire line have also been evacuated.

City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Spokesperson Theo Layne said at the moment we still have the fire heading towards Hout Bay but also a section of it has gone over to Constantia’s neck side Tokai forest to be exact.

Layne said what has happened now is that we have had to redeploy some of the vehicles to that area. We’ve also requested that all the helicopters on the scene go to the area of the fire and water bomb that section.

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Weekend roadblocks in the Western Cape results in 27 drivers arrested for drunken driving

Oscar Thomas
02 March 2015

The Western Cape Traffic Authorities conducted 24 roadblocks across the province this past weekend of which two-thousand-four-hundred and seventy-two vehicles were stopped and checked.

One-thousand-one-hundred and eighty-three drivers were tested for alcohol and as a result twenty-seven motorists were arrested for drunken driving.

Provincial Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said the highest reading was recorded in the George area a reading of 1.25mg per 1000ml.

Africa said the total amount of fines issued were R336 300 and the highest speed recorded in the Western Cape Province since Friday was a 156 in a 120 zone in Oudtshoorn and on the N2 in Swellendam 114 in a 100 zone.

Meanwhile during the roadblocks one person was arrested for negligent driving in Brackenfell, another person arrested in Worcester for trying to bribe a police officer, one person was arrested in the Mossel Bay region for being in possession of false documentation and one driver was arrested in Brackenfell for being in possession of drugs.

Provincial Traffic Chief Kenny Africa said one driver died in a motor vehicle accident, nine pedestrians got killed in motor vehicle accidents.

Africa said the driver who got killed in the motor vehicle accident happened in Tokai and the pedestrians that got killed in the motor vehicle accidents were in Kraaifontein, Modderdam and also in Bishop Lavis a pedestrian was killed after being hit by a motor vehicle.


“Late last night in the Caledon area three pedestrians two 10 year olds and one 21 year old women was struck by a motor vehicle as all three unfortunately died in this accident” Africa added.

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DA accuses Gwede Mantashe for being populism

Jaimie-faith Poonah
02 March 2015

Democratic Alliance MP of Rural Development and Land Reform Thomas Walters has allegedly accused the National Secretary General of the African National Congress Gwede Mantashe for being populism.

Mantashe was quoted as warning farmers in South Africa to work with the ANC on populist policies such as forced expropriation and capping land ownership.

Walters says Mantashe’s statement is an attempt to shift the blame elsewhere for government’s failures.

Walters said: “Gwede Mantashe’s remarks should be seen in the context of an ANC that has personally failed with abundant resources in Land Reform, rather than trying to shift the blame elsewhere and use a bogey man to scare farmers.”

Walters said: “He should focus on making Land Reform work and not perpetuate the failures that we’ve seem up until now, it’s an irresponsible remark and simple not consistent with what we’ve seen in the National Development plan and what the country needs, so it should ber ignored and treated with content.”

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Deputy President Ramaphosa welcomes progress made at the SKA site

Jaimie-faith Poonah
02 March 2015

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed his satisfaction at the progress made at the Square Kilometre Array telescope which is based in the Northern Cape.

Deputy President Ramaphosa visited the site over the weekend together with Minister of Science and Technology Naledi Pandor and unveiled the second MeerKAT antenna.

Ramaphosa welcomed the huge benefit brought by the hosting the SKA and urged South Africans to take full advantage of this huge project.

Ministerial Spokesperson Lunga Ngqengelele said: “Part of the reason of their visit was the installation of this feed. The deputy president has been to the site but it was to see the amount of science and the purpose that the SKA has made in buildings, as the MeerKAT at the Square Kilometer Array.”

“The deputy president was quite impressed by the progress”, Ngqengelele continued.

 

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Two people dead and three others injured in Johannesburg

Jaimie-faith Poonah
2 March 2015

An accident this morning on William Nicol in Johannesburg left two people dead and three others injured.  

It is believed that two vehicles collided into exact other.

The exact details to the cause of the accident will remain the subject of a police investigation.

ER24 Spokesperson Russel Meiring said: “ER24 paramedics arrived at the scene and found the two vehicles lying in the middle of the intersection.”

“On assessment paramedics that found two male passengers at the back of the motor vehicle had already succumbed to their injuries. Three other male passengers in the vehicle were found with critical injuries. Two of the injured were found trapped in the front of the vehicle.”

“Paramedics had to use the Jaws of Life to remove the patients, once freed paramedics treated the patients and transported them to the nearest hospital for further observation.” 

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Fire-fighters trying to contain a fire in Muizenberg

Loyiso Langeni
02 March 2015

Cape Town fire-fighters are still trying to contain a fire which broke out in Peck Valley, Muizenberg on Sunday.

The City of Cape Town's Fire and Rescue Services’ Theo Layne said the fire has already destroyed four homes and the blaze has spread to Hout Bay and Noordhoek.

Layne said the Silvermine Village retirement home in San Michel and some homes near the fire line were evacuated last night. 

He emphasised that they have four helicopters water bombing the area, approximately 28 firefighting vehicles are on the scene with 16 support vehicles.

“We are assisted by the Table Mountain National Parks Working on Fire and Volunteer Wildlife Services. The fire is not under control as yet, but the dropping in wind condition has made a little easier for us to contain the fire” Layne said.   

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COPE welcomes home the bodies of the two struggle icons Moses Kotane and JP Marks

Mbasa Gqokoma
02 March 2015

The Congress of the People has welcomed the two bodies of the struggle icons Moses Kotana and JB Marks.

Their bodies arrived on Sunday morning at the Waterkool Airbase.

A government delegation led by the Minister of Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa, president Jacob Zuma and Minister of Defence Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula welcomed the two bodies in Waterkloof Airbase near Pretoria.

Cope said that it is convinced, more than ever before, that the best way to honour the fallen heroes of the struggle, is to continue the fight to end the poverty and inequality that blight our society.

Cope’s Denni Bloem says “COPE wants to share in the joy and happiness with the families of Moses Kotane and JB Marks in their home coming.

The two outstanding leaders of our people who fought for this freedom that many take it for granted today.

Bloem added that if these two leaders were still alive, they would have been very disappointed and fed to see what is happening in this country, Bloem added.

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Sunday, March 01, 2015

Cabinet Minister keeps fraud forensic findings a secret

Mbasa Gqokoma

01 March 2015

A forensic audit has found Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant’s special advisor, Herbert Mkhize, fleeced the government-funded National Economic Development and Labour Council by more than one million.

According to reports , Mkhize used his Nedlac credit card to run up the exorbitant bills for travel, car hire, and household goods at Makro that included nappies, power tools, pet food and boxer shorts, among other things.

At the time of the spending, Mkhize was earning R800 000 a year a executive director of Nedlac.

 Oliphant kept the findings of the forensic audit a secret after everyone who saw the final report, compiled by chartered accountants AFCA & Partners and submitted to Oliphant in November 2012, was made to sign confidentiality agreements.

 DA Shadow Minister of Labour Ian Ollis says the Democratic Alliance calls on Minister of Labour to suspend her advisor Mkhize with immediate effect.

 Ollis said Mkhize is implicated together with the former CFO of Nedlac on a scandal involving the use of taxpayer’s money to buy private items.

Ollis adds that these two have wasted money approximately close to two million rand Ollis added.

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More road deaths and accidents on South African roads

Mbasa Gqokoma

01 March 2015
ER24 paramedics say six people were injured on Saturday after a bakkie they were travelling on rolled on the Birch Road in Benoni in Johannesburg.

The cause of the collision is not yet known but local authorities were on scene for further investigations.

ER24 Spokesperson Russel Meiring says ER24 paramedics responded to the scene.
On assessment paramedics found that three people from the front of the vehicle have sustained minor injuries, three patients from the back of the bakkie sustained moderate injuries.

Paramedics treated all patients at the scene and were later transported to Thembisa Hospital for further treatment Meiring added.

Meanwhile two vehicles collided and left two more people dead on the R23 in Kempton Park.
ER24 paramedics arrived on the scene and found both vehicles in the same direction.

Paramedics carefully removed the patients from the vehicle and treated them for injuries.
ER24 Spokesperson Russel Meiring says ER24 paramedics from the Johannesburg East branch arrived on scene and found both vehicles in the left lane of the road.

On inspection paramedics found that the two male occupants in their twenties had been sitting in the front of the vehicle.
Three other occupants from the back of the vehicle, a nineteen-year-old female, a three-year-old boy and a young male had all sustained critical injuries.
The cause of the collision is not yet known but local authorities were on scene for further investigations Meiring added.

 

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Bloemfontein accident leaves one dead and eight men injured after a wall collapsed

Mbasa Gqokoma

01 March 2015

An accident on the Nelson Mandela Drive in Bloemfontein last night left one man dead and four others injured.
Netcare 911 paramedics arrived at the scene and found the crumpled remains of the vehicles on the roadway.

Two occupants from one of the vehicles were entrapped.

Netcare 911 Spokesperson Santi Steinmann says Net care 911 paramedics and other services responded to an incident on Nelson Mandela Drive in Bloemfontein in the morning early hours.
Exact details of the cause of the accident are still unknown and will remain the subject of the police investigation Steinmann added.

Meanwhile eight men sustained serious injuries after a wall collapsed onto scaffolding on Kowie Road in Boskruin.

Two other men sustained moderate injuries.

Netcare 911 paramedics and other services arrived at the scene and found the scene strewn with bricks and building material.

Netcare 911 Spokesperson Santi Steinmann says six men sustained serious injuries and two others sustained moderate injuries.

The men were treated at the scene and transported to hospital for further medical care.

The exact details surrounding the cause of the collapse is still unknown Steinmann added.

 

 

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

South Africa to issue out multiple entry visas for BRICKS business executives

Mbasa Gqokoma

28 February 2015

The Department of Home Affairs on Friday announced a long-term, multiple entry visas for BRICS business executives.

This comes as President Zuma emphasised that the country is continuing to review the Immigration Regulations in order to achieve a balanced approach to economic development and national security.

This announcement means that business executives from Brazil, Russia, India and China who apply for a visa to the country for short business trips will now receive a long-term visa.

Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba says “we will continue to meet our turnaround time to fight these for short term businesses.

 This follows previous efforts to each traveller of BRICS business people to South Africa such as a directive last year waving the requirement to provide proof of financial needs to BRICS people” Gigaba added.

 

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Three suspects caught in a hijacking chase in Port Elizabeth

Mbasa Gqokoma

28 February 2015

Three suspects between the ages of 17 and 30-years-old were arrested following a hijacking incident in Port Elizabeth.

 A 19-year-old woman was approached by three suspects while waiting for her friend in her car at Oceanview Street.

It is alleged that one of the suspects pulled out a firearm and demanded her phone and car keys, which she handed over and the suspects fled the scene.

Captain Sandra Janse Van Rensburg says the vehicle was spotted in the Shodavile area and there was a high speed chase within the area.

The suspects allegedly shot at the members, they returned fire and the vehicle was at a stand still. Three suspects were arrested, two of the suspects, one female, one male were taken to Livingston hospital for treatment Van Rensburg added.

 

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Project MeerKAT underway

Mbasa Gqokoma  

28 February 2015

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is today embarking on a visit to the Square Kilometre Array site in the Northern Cape.

This visit will showcase the MeerKAT as the world’s biggest and most sensitive radio telescopes.

 The SKA will be able to probe the edges of the universe and be able to answer key questions about the laws of nature and physics.

 Deputy President’s Spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa says South Africa is currently building the sixty four dig MeerKAT.

Upon completion in twenty seventeen the MeerKAT will be the largest radio telescope in the world and most sensitive radio scope of its kind.

During his visit, Deputy President Ramaphosa will also have an opportunity to
interact with members of the community from surrounding areas of the SKA
side Mamoepa added.

 

 

 

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Deputy President Ramaphosa to Visit SKA Site in Carnavon

Oscar Thomas

28 February 2015

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is today embarking on a visit to the Square Kilometre Array site in the Northern Cape.

His visit will showcase the MeerKAT as the world’s biggest and most sensitive radio telescopes.

The SKA will be able to probe the edges of the universe and be able to answer key questions about the laws of nature and physics.

Deputy President’s Spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa said Deputy President Ramaphosa will be supported by Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor, Northern Cape Premier Sylvia Lucas and other Ministers of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission.

Mamoepa said South Africa is currently building the 64-dish MeerKAT.

Mamoepa said upon completion in 2017, the MeerKAT will be the largest radio telescope in the world and most sensitive radio telescope of its kind.

Mamoepa said the first dishes of the MeerKAT telescope have been erected in the Karoo and are performing to specification.

“It is expected to bring more than R30 billion into the country, which will benefit ordinary people, particularly in one of South Africa's most rural and underdeveloped provinces” Mamoepa added.

 

 

 

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Boy drowns in KZN

Oscar Thomas
27 February 2015

A three-year-old boy died after he drowned in Ramsgate this morning. It is believed that the boy was found by family members who contacted emergency services.

The exact details to the cause of the drowning incident will remain the subject of a police investigation.

Netcare 911 Spokesperson Santi Steinmann said Reports from the scene indicate that the little boy was found by members of the family who contacted emergency services for assistance.

Steinmann said the boy was found in the swimming pool.

Steinmann said Paramedics spent about an hour trying to resuscitate the boy.

“He was declared dead on the scene” Steinmann added.

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Western Cape Department of Health to decrease new HIV infections

Oscar Thomas
27 February 2015

The Western Cape Department of Health has signed a Memorandum of Understanding in decreasing new HIV infections by 50 percent by 2016.

MEC of Health Nomafrench Mbombo said in a statement that this agreement is an example of the importance of public-private partnership.

Ministerial Spokesperson Siviwe Gwarube said what these partners will be doing is that they’ll be working a network of private practitioners training them to administer medical male circumcision and HIV counselling services.

Gwarube said this is the very first initiative of its kind in South Africa and we believe it will go a long way to achieve our goals of decreasing new HIV infections.

“The Western Cape government will be providing operational support like consumables such as the circumcision tax and the HIV tests” Gwarube added.

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DENOSA says overcrowding at Hospitals is nothing new

Oscar Thomas
27 February 2015

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa said the overcrowding at Mamelodi Hospital is nothing new, as it is one of the issues that the union has been concerned about since 2013.

The hospital has been making headlines recently for its overcrowding at its maternity ward which resulted in a heavily pregnant women sleeping in benches.

Denosa’s Chairperson in Gauteng Simphiwe Gada said we of the view that an investigation into this matter is necessary as it is a matter we’ve been constantly been raising with the Department.

Gada said it’s a matter that we are not going to stop, it’s a matter that we’ll continue in all other hospitals in the province because it’s a matter of resources.

“There is a great influx of nurses who have resigned due to the pension reforms issues which is clearly a strain on the human resources” Gada added.

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Suspects to appear in court for 13 bags of Dagga

Oscar Thomas
27 February 2015

Four suspects aged between 34 and 46-years-old who have been charged with dealing in dagga at Sammestroom farm are expected to appear in court on the 2nd of March. 

The suspects were arrested following a tip-off police from the community about illegal activity taking place on a farm in the area.

Sergeant Yanga Ngcukana said when police arrived on the scene they pounced on a Kia SUV that was about to flee the scene and managed to block it.

Ngcukana said when the driver saw the police he drove off leaving his counterparts behind.

“They tried to run away but they were caught by the police and when we check the scene we found 13 black bags filled with dagga that is estimated at about R400 000 on the street market” Ngcukana added.

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Proposal to lower blood alcohol level on the table

Oscar Thomas
27 February 2015

Today is the last day for the public to make their submissions on the proposed lowering of blood alcohol level to zero. 

Currently the National Road Traffic Amendment Bill allows for drivers to have up to two alcohol beverages. 

However the Western Cape Department of Transport and Public Works said it has strong reservations about the current proposal but fully supports the need for continual review of the legislation.

Ministerial Spokesperson Siphesihle Dube said while we at the Western Cape Transport Public Works support the need for continual review of the legislation to ensure that it’s appropriate for the South African contexts and AIDS as a continued fight against drunk driving.

Dube said we have strong reservations on the current proposals as there are still is no scientific evidence that exists that the current levels are acceptable.

Dube said if they were to be reduced they would decline the number of accidents and deaths on our roads.

“We also have no proof that shows that drivers that have had no alcohol are safer than drivers that have consumed alcohol within the current limit” Dube added.

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47-year-old German tourist rescued from a near drowning

Lusanda Bill
27 February 2015

A 47-year-old German tourist was rescued after she was caught in strong rip current while swimming at Cape St Francis main beach.

National Sea Rescue Institute Spokesperson Craig Lambinon said on arrival on scene it was found that the German female had been assisted out of the water by family members as well as members from the tour group that she was with.

Lambinon said she was on the beach suffering breathing difficulties and near drowning symptoms

“NSRI medics treated the patient and monitored her condition while awaiting paramedics to arrive. She was taken to hospital in a stable condition and will make a full recovery” Lambinon added.

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HETN condemns racist attacks against black students in Stellenbosh University

Loyiso Langeni
27 February 2015

The Higher Education Transformation Network has strongly condemned the ongoing racist attacks on black students and staff by students of the University of Stellenbosch.

It is alleged Lwazi Phakade, Sikhulikile Duma and Sphele Masuku were standing in a queue in a food franchise in Merriman Road early on Saturday morning when three white students allegedly began to insult the restaurant staff.

HETN Hendrick Makaneta said they have liaised and sent a complaint to the judiciary service commission so that this matter of judiciary biased by the judge can be thoroughly investigated.

“We expect a response as soon as possible from the JSC regarding our complaint.” Makaneta added.

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NUM concerned over deaths of workers in the line of duty

Loyiso Langeni
27 February 2015

The National Union of Mineworkers in the Western Caper said it is shocked and disgusted at the death of a workers at a construction site in Pinelands.

NUM Provincial regional Secretary Happiness Holiday said one death is too man and construction companies need to make sure that health and safety structures are functioning at their workplaces.

Holiday added that our dismay to the companies is that they do not involve us in the investigation of those fatalities.

“Now as the stakeholder we are recognised as the union, in terms of the membership, they do not involve us in the investigation, we believe that that they could be something they are hiding.

Our worry is that these incidents are not reported to the Labour Department for them to be captured.” Holiday said.

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Office of the Ombudsman in the WC up and running

Loyiso Langeni
26 February 2015

The Western Cape office of the Ombudsman is up and running and Advocate Vusi Pikoli says his main focus of the office is to receive and investigate complaints from the public regarding police inefficiencies.

Advocate Pikoli said his office will seek to foster good relations between the police and the communities to make sure that both work well together.

Premier Helen Zille appointed Advocate Pikoli to head the office in 2014 following the Commission of Inquiry into policing in Khayelitsha.

Pikoli added that police inefficiency will manifest itself in the form of poor service delivery when the members of the public complain, it will be because they are not getting good service from the police.

“Sometimes the police would not respond immediately or even not respond at all. That’s enough of a cause for them to lodge a complaint to my office and my office will have to investigate that complaint.” Pikoli added.

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A couple died in a house fire in Pietermaritzburg

Loyiso Langeni
26 February 2015

A house fire in the Oribi area of Pietermaritzburg left an elderly couple dead this morning. This is after their house was engulfed in flames.

Netcare 911 Spokesperson Chris Botha said when they arrived on the scene the firemen were fighting the blaze.

He said as soon as the firemen finished paramedics went in and found both people had tragically died due to the severe injuries they had sustained

The exact details to the cause of the accident will remain the subject of a police investigation.

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A truck accident left two people injured

Lusanda Bill
26 February 2015


Picture provided by WC Traffic
 
A truck which lost control and nosedive under the bridge on the N1 inbound bridge below Koeberg Interchange has left two people injured.

The two suffered moderate injuries.

Western Cape Traffic Spokesperson Richard Coleman said the N1 incoming was closed for about one hour while they tried to clear the road. The N1 has since been opened.

Police were on the scene to investigate. 

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