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11 June 2014

Published every Wednesday by CXpress 2006 (Pty) Ltd - PO Box 1449, Plettenberg Bay 6600 - 6 Park Lane, Plettenberg Bay - Tel: 044 533 1004 - Fax: 044 533 0852 Email: editor@cxpress.co.za / advertising@cxpress.co.za Web page: www.cxpress.co.za Printed by Group Editors

FREE Photo: Sharyn Hodges ShowMe Plettenberg Bay

Close shave This fixed-wing light aircraft crash-landed on Keurbooms Beach on Friday and the Civil Aviation Authority has opened an investigation as to why its propeller dropped off mid-air - read all about it on page 3

Eskom switch-offs nigh

Father’s Day fun for all

WC 2014 kicks off!

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CXPRESS

News & Views

11 June 2014

Driving Miss Crazy

Driving Miss Karoo - the adventures of English Joan and Irish Abigail - Final JEEVES shares his adventures as Garden Route chauffeur extraordinaire - we pick up the story on day number three of the lively Englishwomen’s Little Karoo road trip, after a stay-over in pretty Calitzdorp...

BETWEEN PASSES: A cluster of trees form the focal point when descending Cloete’s Pass towards Herbertsdale, before leaving the valley via Du Plessis Pass

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O trip to Calitzdorp should exclude a visit to a wine estate, the most famous being Boplaas. English Joan, Irish Abigail and I stopped off for breakfast at one of the many coffee shops in the village. I went in search of a hosepipe behind one of these buildings, so I could wash the previous day’s dust and mud off the Range Rover remembering Joan’s instructions of not wanting the car to look like a 4x4 in Tokyo with

spray-on mud on it. Over coffee I asked Joan how they came by the Range Rover V8 Sport as their transport mode, thinking it wasn’t the type of vehicle readily available to rent. “Ronald! It’s yjq you know. Abi’s Pops had good connections at Leyland, having had a Landrover dealership in Ireland. A few calls here and there later, and we ended up renting this ‘demo’ model from a Cape Town dealer, at a fixed rate for three

Our 10 000 free copies are distributed every Wednesday to a multitude of outlets along the Garden Route, with emphasis on Knysna and Plett and drop-offs at *Sedgefield Tourism *Caltex StarMart in Wilderness *Lynn Schroeder, Build It and other select outlets in George *Storms River Village and Bridge in Tsitsikamma - phone 044 533 1004 (o/h) with distribution queries.

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months, unlimited mileage. “Anyway, they knew we were only going up as far as PE,” she explained. “So, everybody happy!” Next we popped in at Boplaas for a few tastings. There was a lot on offer whites, reds and, of course, their world famous tawny and vintage ports. A most pleasing discovery was the very affordable Stoepsit Sauvignon Blanc - a real find, and what can only be described as a truly ig/ ugnnkig wine; a companionable, conversational, quaffing wine. Instead of returning to Plett via Oudtshoorn, I thought a nice drive back would be down Robinson Pass, with lunch at Eight Bells, where you can then turn off and hit the back roads through farming country on to George. But at Boplaas I studied the road atlas and saw that there was another road from here over the Rooiberg Mountains, and down towards Mossel Bay. How inviting! Never heard of it before, or known anyone to have gone this route... So? Let’s go! We drove along the flat for about 15km, through heav-

ily farmed countryside with sheep, cattle, horses, ostrich, and numerous fruit and vegetable crops. The road began to climb into the mountains ahead, and a sign-board welcomed us to the South-West Cape Conservation Reserve, Groenfontein Nature Reserve. We passed an old Karoo farmhouse in good condition, with a barn-like construction of steel and roof-sheeting sheltering it... Quite peculiar, we thought. Then the twisting drive up Rooiberg Pass, to the top where a wooden cross was attached to a fence on a corner with someone’s name on it, and a date. Difficult to work that one out, too, as the road was narrow and we hardly exceeded 20kph. Down to the valley below, past the Rooiberg Lodge with its landing strip, where a sign beckoned you to sleep, walk, swim and eat. Past the well-known Mont Rouge Olive Estate, with its various olive products on deli and market shelves from Cape Town to Australia. Through the quaint little town of Vanwyksdorp in the Groot River Valley, founded in 1830 as a Dutch Reformed Mission station, with its imposing church - a bit of a rural-style settlement today, with people tending to their garden crops, carrying firewood, fixing a gate or chopping wood. In all, we crossed about three mountain ranges and various passes - the next one up being Cloete’s Pass, before continuing through Herbertsdale and Du Plessis Pass. In-between we stopped for a beer and a sandwich at a ‘bikers pub’ at Dwarsrivier Country Getaway, with selfcatering cottages on the pro-

perty. In the surrounding hills were quite a few modern weekend type retreats for Mossel Bay residents, 30km from here. En route (or, as they say in CNN lingo, “in rout”) there were lots of photo stops and chatter about the enormity of the landscape, mountains and vegetation, with the odd Irish joke here and there, amid tales of daddy’s Ashes tour of Australia in 1954. What a team that was, captained by Len Hutton (Sir) with Bill Eldrich, Peter May, Colin Cowdrey, Dennis Compton, Alec Bedser... And there was such a great selection of bowlers at that time, the likes of ‘Fiery Fred’ Truman. Off-spinner Jim Laker and slow lefty Tony Lock were left behind, because these outspoken cricketers were regarded as “difficult tourists” by the MCC, according to “daddy”. Interestingly, when the touring side play against Oz States, for example NSW or Victoria, or an Australian XI, they go under the guise of the MCC, but when they play a test match, they are called England. About 20km outside Mossel Bay, we drove along more rural tracks through hilly

farming country and passed a large dam before hitting Groot Brakrivier (aka Great Brak). Then it was back to Plett to drop the girls at home and say goodbye. A hug and a kiss, and a tear from the Irish, and off I drove into the evening sunset, with memories aplenty of the brief sojourn into the Little Karoo with two lovely adventuresses and their Black V8 Beauty. Not long after, an envelope appeared on the screen of my Nokia. It read: “Ronald. Abigail and I and another friend from Edinburgh are planning a road trip in July through England, Scotland and Ireland. We were wondering whether you would like to come over and do a ‘Jeeves’ for us? Only this time we’ll do all the planning and bookings. Joan.” Wpvkn"yg"jkv"vjg"tqcf"cickp" vqigvjgt000"Dwemng/wr#" /"Lggxgu

HILLS AND DALES: We crossed three mountain ranges and various passes, and this photo shows the start of Cloete’s Pass with its Little Karoo vegetation a pretty feature

OFF THE BEATEN TRACK: A bent arrow sign warns of the twists and turns on the road down Rooiberg Pass, and as one descends, the view at right shows the dirt track snaking on into the distant valley


News & Views

11 June 2014

Is it criminal for a prop to depart at 2,500 feet? MIKE KANTEY sped to the beach when word of numerous fatalities preceded a rush of emergency service vehicles to the fixed-wing light aircraft ZU-FTC’s short landing strip...

SCENE OF THE CRIME: The ‘crime scene’ police tape cordoning off the site where ‘Shirl’ came to a halt - especially clear on the front-cover photo - had all chuckling in relief about this potential disaster with its happy ending of trainee pilot Rassie Mare’s shoulder the only injury Photos: John Stegmann

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F you were to believe what Facebook says, then 45,000 people and five parrots died when a squadron of Russian MiGs crashed into a fleet of Boeings... The truth, however, is a little more fascinating. At 9am on Friday morning, Francois Danes and Michael Goosen, caretakers at Tsokwane were disturbed by a mad rush of police, emergency services, ambulances and a fire truck, reacting to rumours that a plane had crashlanded at Keurbooms where eight people (but no parrots, sorry to say) had died. The caretakers had heard nothing at all and suggested I tried the Protea Keurbooms, but I first hiked down the muddy road and scrambled up to the beacon to see if I could spot the plane.

Much scratched and bitten, I then went spinning down the old Protea Keurbooms Hotel road, where I saw a police bakkie parked next to the dune path. There I met locals Pam and John Stegmann, who thought it might have been a Piper Cub on the beach. Sure enough, I turned left at the end of the path and measured 100 paces towards Keurboomstrand, where a light plane was neatly parked - minus its propeller. It was marked as ZU-FTC from George Flight Training School, and had the nickname ‘Shirl’. A group of bystanders included Plettenberg Bay SAPS constables Boor, Makwetu and Fourie, as well as Kerry Smith, a self-confessed aviation junkie.

“It’s great,” raved Kerry, “that he managed to land so beautifully in one piece, and look! - its wing is all covered in sand...” When I paced out the pilot’s ‘landing strip’, it measured all of 50 paces, with two grooves where his nose-cone had hit the dirt twice, before coming up again and finally digging in with his left wingtip to come to a final halt and righting her. Given the fact that trainee pilot Rassie Mare was flying at 2,500 feet when his propeller fell off the nose, his crashlanding was not so much gruesome front-page news as another miracle in this boring old piece of paradise called Plettenberg Bay. Could it be that ‘Shirl’ is short for ‘Shirley Goodness and Mercy’...?

CXPRESS Read CXPRESS online at www.cxpress.co.za

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News & Views

11 June 2014

Dogs rule at roadblock

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massive roadblock on the N2 outside Wilderness on the evening of May 29 enabled several law enforcement agencies to stop and search 115 vehicles and 222 people en route westwards on the highway. Positioned so as not to be visible from a distance, the event involved police and traffic departments along with Immigration and SAN-

Parks staff. Called Operation Usalama, the exercise was intended to focus on car theft, firearms, drugs and human trafficking, as well as copper cable theft and wildlife crimes. Thanks to the use of sniffer dogs, two men in possession of dagga were detained and numerous vehicles checked for drug transportation. Prominent in the searches

were Constable Gavin Benn and his dog, Carlos, who searched the interiors, engine compartments, undersides, and loading bays of the stationary vehicles. A total of 14 traffic fines valuing R5,800 were issued, while smaller fines covered illegal transportation of an animal and endangered plant species. /"Dqd"Jqrmkp

GO GET ‘EM, CARLOS! Constable Gavin Benn and his sniffer dog commence the search of a suspicious vehicle Photo: Bob Hopkin

Break-ins and armed robbery rock peaceful Nature’s Valley

CXPRESS Reporter

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HE first weeks in May left a dark patch on a relatively untainted Nature’s Valley crime calendar, with break-ins at two homes of permanent residents and an armed robbery at a holiday house in Nemesia Street. The perpetrator in the first robbery - in which several items were stolen such as electronic equipment and electric drills, drill bits, a fishing knife and more - was arrested on May 12 while en route from Nature’s Valley to the N2, when he was found with some of the stolen goods in his possession. Lt Marlene Pieterse from Plett Police confirmed that 34-year-old Ronald Krigga appeared in the Plett Magistrate’s Court on May 22, where he pleaded guilty on a housebreaking charge. “An iPhone and iPad were found in his possession, and Krigga returned to court on May 26 when he was sentenced to 20 months’ imprisonment, of which 10 months were suspended for five years,” said Pieterse. During the second incident, culprits entered the home of a permanent Valley dweller and proceeded to raid her wine collection, drinking their way through the best of the lot. Explains a source that prefers to remain anonymous: “Thereafter they got stuck into the beer, which happened to be alcohol-free, at which time the lady of the house heard them downstairs

and pushed her panic button. “ADT Security promptly responded but by the time they arrived the thieves had fled - presumably out the back and onto the SANParks patrol path bordering the homes on Forest Drive, judging from the trail of beer bottles leading there.” A more serious attack occurred around 10:45pm on May 13, when six armed robbers hit a holiday home and held up its temporary inhabitants - a honeymoon couple from Nelspruit - at gunpoint, zip-tying their hands together and robbing them of money, wallets, jewellery, credit cards, etc. Said Pieterse: “While at home along with the owner’s cleaning lady, the couple heard suspicious noises. The husband then saw several men entering the house through a bathroom window. “The couple locked themselves in the main bedroom but opened up after the men threatened to shoot them through the door. They were then tied up in the room before their attackers fled on foot.” The men tried stealing the couple’s gold-coloured Toyota Corolla, but could not get it started. Fortunately, apart from being in a state of shock and a small knife wound to one person’s head, no-one was seriously harmed. The source claimed that, when one of the men threatened to shoot during the attack, one of the others stop-

ped him, saying “that’s not why we came here”. By 12:20 the captives had managed to escape and ran to the home of Paul Zietsman, who also summoned ADT via his residence’s panic button. ADT then contacted the police who responded at once, and also sent a vehicle to the Tsitsikamma toll gate. “It is not known whether, when or how the culprits left the valley, but a family member claimed to have heard a vehicle screeching up the pass in the direction of Plett around 11:30pm. It could possibly have been the culprits,” said the source. Around 5:30am on the Wednesday, someone tried to draw money at a First National Bank ATM with one of the stolen cards, but without success because they could not get the pin number right. It is also not known at which ATM, but it could be presumed to have been either at Storms River Bridge or in Plettenberg Bay. Two suspects had been arrested by our going to press: 32-year-old James Malibonge Matambo and 54-year-old Jakobus Finley Jantjies will appear in the Plett court on June 12 to apply for bail. The investigation continues and anyone with information is asked to call A/O John Nomdoe on 044 501 1900, while Nature’s Valley dwellers with information in addition to the above must please notify NVRO member Paul Zietsman on 082 492 1674.


News & Views

11 June 2014

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Bitou and Eskom tackle load-shed challenge with geyser switch-offs To avert load-shedding this winter and beyond, Bitou Municipality and national energy supplier Eskom are embarking on a load-management initiative to shift some electricity demand out of peak times - YOLANDÉ STANDER reports

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UBBED the Residential Load Management project, the initiative involves the installation of geysercontrol switches allowing the municipality to remotely turn off residents’ geysers for between 20 and 40 minutes during peak-demand times. “We are facing supply challenges both nationally and locally and this is one of the measures to address the issue,” Bitou mayor Memory Booysen said at a media briefing last week. Geysers account for 30%50% of a household’s electricity consumption and residential users are the biggest contributors to the spike in demand from 5pm-9pm. Willie Botha from Energy Insight - the energy services company appointed to oversee installations - said the aim was to save about 1MW after installing 970 new load switches and reconnecting 780 old relays. Bitou’s manager for electrical and mechanical engineering Peter Harpestad said the reason some houses were already equipped with these switches was that in the late 1990s the municipality embarked on a similar project. This, however, failed without a well-planned strategy and support from the getgo, costing the municipality about R54,000 per month for 60 months. This time around the initiative is well supported from the start and is entirely funded by energy regulator Nersa and Eskom. Botha said although the device would not reduce the homeowner’s electricity bill, it would save the municipality money as it paid Eskom more for electricity during

peak periods. “There is also a fallacy that these switches actually increase the user’s electricity consumption when the geyser is switched back on. This is not true. The loss of heat during the period it is switched off is minimal, so there will not be any added cost for the consumer,” Harpestad said. This also ensures that the household still has hot water during the switch-off, which will be staggered to ensure not all geysers are switched off at once. The units will be installed at no cost to the home owner and the project is also expected to create jobs for local residents. Three companies have submitted tenders for the installation of switches, one from Plettenberg Bay and the other two from Pretoria and Humansdorp. “We are committed to local job creation and from our side we will train four local residents through the process,” Botha said. All those involved in the installation phase will receive training from Energy Insight. “And to ensure the safety of residents, each person involved will also undergo police clearance.” The rollout will start on June 17 and is expected to end by September 30, whereafter the project will be handed over to the municipality. The municipality will be responsible for maintenance of the units which, according to Botha, are robust and should last up to 25 years. Eskom’s manager of Integrated Demand Management Sibusiso Thsabalala said they were dedicated to ensuring short-term security

of electricity supply through coordinating and consolidating the various initiatives aimed at optimising energy use and balancing supply and demand. Tshabalala said about 40 similar projects had been rolled out across South Africa since 2006, all yielding savings, and thus encouraged Bitou residents to join hands with the municipality to ensure the project’s success. What you need to know: • Trained technicians will be going door to door from June 17 to explain the process and to check the availability of homeowners for installations. • These technicians will all have identity cards displaying the logos of Eskom, Bitou Municipality, and Energy Insight. • The areas affected include Plett central, Whale Rock, Robberg, Longships, Brackenridge, Piesang Valley, Poortjies, and the Marine Way and Beacon Way areas. Contact the project office on 012 345 5215 during office hours for additional information, to verify anything about the process, or to make an appointment.


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CXPRESS

News & Views

11 June 2014

Ward Project programme gets thumbs up yet again Read CXPRESS online at www.cxpress.co.za

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T a Special Council meeting held on June 5, Knysna mayor Georlene Wolmarans announced that the Council’s Ward Project programme would continue in the 2014/15 financial year. Established in 2011, the programme has achieved great success and for the next financial year, capital projects will remain at R200,000 per ward. The project has been fully integrated with Knysna’s ward-based development programme and IDP. Wolmarans said the success of these projects contributed positively to the quality of life of Knysna’s communities: “These include the refurbishment of tourist facilities, creation of play parks, construction of wheelchair ramps, installation of guard rails, and paving of sidewalks, just to name a few. “Albeit small in nature, the projects have an immediate and meaningful impact on

SMALL CHANGE, BIG IMPACT: Ward Projects include tasks like the construction of wheelchair ramps, installation of guard rails, and paving of sidewalks - all of which make an immediate and meaningful impact on the lives of Knysna locals

the lives of our people. We believe that its success can be attributed to the active involvement of the communities - they decided what they needed, and we listened,” Wolmarans added. “Another tangible outcome

is the creation of jobs and its contribution to the economy of our town. We are leveraging our service delivery programmes to create short-term work opportunities providing a much needed source of income in many households.”

Notice Board

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DEN to Addo is hosting an awareness event vq/ fc{ at 6pm at Emily Moon. Conservationist and environmental journalist Ian Michler will give an update on the complex debates of rhino horn and the ivory trade, and share his insights into the controversial practices of predator breeding and canned hunting in South Africa. Ian has been investigating lion farms and the canned hunting industry for 15 years and is currently involved in the making of a documentary film on these twin horrors. Entry costs R50 for visitors (not E2A members). Raphaeli Waldorf School invites all of Bitou to join its Annual Big Walk on Youth Day, Monday Lwpg" 38. Participants will walk from the Beacon Island hotel car park to Robberg Beach End and back, with a shorter walk for younger children. Registration takes place at 9am in the car park at R20 per adult and R10 per child.

Paws

Plett Animal Welfare Service

There will be a Beach Treasure Dig at R20 per participant and a Sand Art Sculpture competition on the day (individuals or teams at R20 per entry) with prizes up for grabs. Judging will take place at 1pm and all proceeds will go to the school. Home-made veggie soup and bread and other snacks will be for sale after the walk. Call Candice Ludick on 074 113 0692 for more info. Knysna Plett Concert Series presents violinist Ilya Gringolts and pianist Peter Laul on Lwpg" 38 at Knysna DRC Hall at 7:30pm. The programme will include works by Beethoven, Dvorak and Strauss and tickets cost R120 (scholars pay R30), available at the door from 6:45pm. The ‘Flight for Birders’ identification and conservation course by Dr Anton Odendal will be presented at St Francis United Church Hall in Sedgefield on Lwpg" 48" (" 49. The cost of R500 per per-

son includes a course manual and certificate endorsed by BirdLife SA. Contact Elaine at mwjasser@mweb.co.za or on 082 455 8402 to book. Kids of Kurland and The Whitehouse Theatre will host the second Plett Fringe Festival from Lwpg"48"vq"Lwn{"3" in conjunction with Plett’s MAD Festival (July 4-18). Over the six days of the Fringe Festival, shows will encompass music, comedy, magic, song and dance. All the acts will be presented at the National Arts Festival, and the artists have again agreed to stop en route to Grahamstown to stage their performances in Plett. Prior to each performance, various bands will perform in The Whitehouse courtyard and refreshments and snacks will be on sale. Tickets and a festival guide can be obtained at The Old House Shop. Find the full programme online at www. plettfringe.co.za or call Ann on 082 452 8764 for info.


Father’s Day

Daddy, I love you for all that you do. I’ll kiss you and hug you ‘cause you love me, too. You feed me and need me to teach you to play. So smile ‘cause I love you on this Father’s Day. - Author Unknown

11 June 2014

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CXPRESS

Interval

11 June 2014

What is Bruce Lee’s favourite drink? Wataaaaah!

What happened to old Russ?

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WO very old and frail friends, Russ and Sam, met in the park every day to feed the birds, watch the squirrels, and discuss world problems. One day, Russ didn’t show up. Sam didn’t think much of it and figured maybe Russ had a cold or something. But after Russ had failed to show up for a week or so, Sam truly got worried. However, since the only time they ever got together was at the park, Sam didn’t know where Russ lived, so he was unable to find out

what had happened to him. A month had passed, and Sam figured he had seen the last of Russ, but one day as Sam approached the park, lo and behold, there sat Russ! Sam was very excited and happy to see his old friend, and told him so. Then he said: “For crying out loud, Russ, what in the world happened to you?” Russ replied: “I was in jail.” “Jail?” cried Sam, “what in

the world for?” “Well,” Russ said, “you know Sue, that cute little blonde waitress at the coffee shop where I sometimes go?” “Yeah,” said Sam, “I do. What about her?” “Well, she filed sexual harassment charges against me and, at 89 years old, I was so proud that when I got into court, I pleaded ‘guilty’. “The damn judge gave me 30 days for lying under oath.”

A little bit silly, but…

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INDING a woman sobbing that she had locked her keys in her car, a passing gentleman assures her that he can help. She looks on amazed as he removes his trousers, rolls them into a tight ball and rubs them against the car door. Magically it opens! “That’s so clever,” the woman gasps. “How did you do it?” “Easy,” replies the man, “these are my khakis…”

Bank managers, beware of blondes A blonde walks into a bank in Johannesburg and asks for the loans department. She says she’s going to Europe on business for three weeks and needs to borrow R10,000. The bank officer says the bank will need some kind of security for the loan, so the blonde hands over the keys to a new Rolls Royce. The car is parked on the street in front of the bank; she has the registration papers and everything checks out, so the bank agrees to ac-

cept the car as collateral for the loan. The bank manager and its staff all enjoy a good laugh at the blonde for using a R500,000 Rolls as collateral against a R10,000 loan. An employee of the bank then proceeds to drive the Rolls into the bank’s underground garage and parks it there. Two weeks later, the blonde returns, repays the R10,000 and the interest, which comes to a total of R141.66.

The bank manager says: “Miss, we are very happy to have had your business, and this transaction has worked out very nicely, but we are a little puzzled. “While you were away, we checked you out and found that you are a multimillionaire. What puzzles us is why would you bother to borrow R10,000?” The blond replies: “Where else in Johannesburg can I park my car for two weeks for only R141.66 and expect it to be there when I return?”

Father’s good will

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OUG Smith is on his deathbed and knows the end is near. His nurse, his wife, his daughter, and two sons are with him. So Dough says to them: “Bernie, I want you to take the Mayfair houses. “Sybil, you take the apartments over in the East End. “Jamie, I want you to take the offices over in the city centre. “Sarah, my dear wife, please take all the residential buildings on the banks of the river.” The nurse is simply blown away by all this, and as Doug slips away, she says: “Mrs Smith, your husband must have been such a hardworking man to have accumulated all of this property”. Sarah replies: “Property? The idiot had a paper route!”


Business

11 June 2014

CXPRESS

You’ve only got six months to save for December holidays

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OOKING holidays late in the year often means paying higher rates for travelling and accommodation. There is a solution which doesn’t include incurring debt or banking on your bonus to cover costs, but rather planning early and working towards the perfect holiday. Says head of FNB Consumer Education Eunice Sibiya: “We often forget to factor holidays into our budgets throughout the year, which results in us having to tap into debt, or rely on a big bonus in order to make holiday payments and, at worst, postpone or cancel a welldeserved holiday when December comes around.” With six months to go until the end of the year, now is the time to start planning. “As with any other savings goal, it is a good idea to open a separate savings or investments account specifically for this goal, and deposit

Investor Focus

money every month. “This is a great way of ensuring that you always have funds available for when that holiday special pops up in your inbox,” says Sibiya. When deciding on a savings vehicle for your holiday, remember to assess how quickly you would need access to your money. “Due to the nature of planning a holiday, it is often a good idea to take a two pronged approach,” advises Sibiya. Depending on how much time you have to save, you can split the money to an immediate access account as well as a fixed deposit account that releases the rest of your funds in time. By so doing, you will have easy access to funds in the event that special travel offers pop up, while you will still earn a higher interest on the funds in the fixed deposit. Investing a portion of inter-

Malcolm Stewart – Investment manager at Michaelides Parker Wealth Knysna & Plett

On economic insights

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NFLATION, currently running at 6% per annum, is expected to show a marginal increase between now and year-end, peaking at 6.2% before declining to below 6% next year. Longer term projections put it back at 5.25% by the end of 2016. The Rand has slowly begun to stabilise at +/-10.4 to the US$. The current calculated value using the Purchasing Power Parity methodology is 9.55, and possibly 9.05 by the end of 2015! This is probably influenced by rising interest rates in the USA, rising inflation in the USA, and a weakening US$. Our domestic interest rates are expected to rise slowly between now and year-end. Small increments can be expected with another 1% rise over the next 12 months. The economic growth rate is expected to remain very subdued; however it is very possible that an end to the platinum strikes could see a short-term spending surge as cash again flows into the economy from a seriously

est earned on other savings accounts into your travel savings accounts could be a way in which to reach holiday savings goals faster if you have limited time to save. But before doing so, it is crucial to ensure that there will be adequate funds available for other expenses and possible unforeseen circumstances and emergencies. When opening an account, remember that some accounts will not allow continual deposits and that penalty fees on early or exceeded number of withdrawals can quickly chip away at any savings made. The perk of travelling in a group is that you can plan, budget and save together. Consider having one savings account between all of the travellers into which savings are deposited for accommodation and travelling costs that can be split equally between the whole group.

deprived community. Another set of incredible economic statistics was sent to me by Sasfin Securities in Plett. It is based on a report produced by The South African Audience Research Foundation. Some of their key findings are as follows: The “lower class” (LSM 1-5, this is for households with a monthly income of only R1,480 to R4,310) has declined from 42.4% of the adult population a year ago to a current 38.8%. In 2001 this segment equated to over 66.6% of the population. The “middle class” (LSM 6-9, for households with a monthly income of R6,669 to R25,395) now accounts for 54.8% of the population, up from 52.1% a year ago. In 2001 this group accounted for 33.6% of the adult population. The “upper class” (LSM 10, for households with monthly earnings upwards of R40,695) grew from 6% to 6.4% over the last 12 months. Korcev An outcome of this grow-

ing middle class is that these higher earning individuals have more discretionary income. However, when people first enter the middle class the amount of discretionary income available after covering basic living costs is small initially, and is not enough to buy a car or a house. So much of this discretionary income is spent on semidurables that display the new “status”, such as apparel. It is this behaviour that has resulted in the steady rise in retail spending. This trend of growing retail volumes underpinned the growth in listed apparel companies during the last decade, and this form of “aspirational” spending is set to continue for the foreseeable future and will make rewarding investments in the relevant quoted companies, particularly if there is a pullback on the JSE. Ocneqno"jcu"dggp"kp"vjg" kpxguvogpv"kpfwuvt{"hqt"qxgt" 62"{gctu0"Jg"jcu"ytkvvgp" vjku"eqnwop"kp"EZRTGUU" hqt"vjg"ncuv"38"{gctu"cpf"ku" c"urgekcnkuv"kp"ocpcikpi" tgvktgf"ygcnvj0

Because it will be complicated if everyone deposits their own amounts, stick to a set amount per person per month and put one person in charge of the account. Short-term areas of saving could be unnecessary expenses such as that extra cappuccino every morning or take-away lunch. For long-term savings, investigate your monthly mobile and data bills, what you spend on bank charges, as well as your insurance premium (quote), as these fees can often be restructured and consequently reduced.

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CXPRESS

Social Scene

11 June 2014

THERE’S HOPE FOR KNYSNA, TOO! Several reports have been featured in CXPRESS over the past months with regard to Plett being one of five Hope Spot hopefuls in South Africa - the debate being sparked off in letters bemoaning the fact that jet-skis still operate in the Bay, which would negatively influence the Plett campaign. This issue monopolised our attention to a point where we neglected to mention that Knysna is on the shortlist, too. Pictured above are some of those in attendance during the Knysna Hope Spot inception meeting on May 27, with Knysna deputy mayor Esme Edge seated at centre, next to Dr Tony Ribbink of Sustainable Seas Trust and facilitator Vernon Gibbs Halls, right. Click on www.cxpress.co.za to read more about the meeting, and about Knysna’s unique campaign.

People, places & events

WILD-LIFE WEDDING: Plett boy Alex van den Heever, fourth from left son of Jon and Estelle van den Heever - married Pippa Smythe, centre - daughter of Andrew and Lynda Smythe of Pietermaritzburg - at a venue in the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal recently. Alex heads up the Tracker Academy at Londolozi and Samara game reserves and Pippa is a chartered accountant at Londolozi. Some of the guests included Londolozi CEO Dave Varty, his wife Shan, son Boyd and daughter Bronwyn. The couple honeymooned on the Greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos.

WOMEN OFFERING MOMS BIRTH SUPPORT: The Garden Route’s home-birthing team of midwives - from left are Mandi Busson, Louisa Shneor (doula/lactation consultant), and Raven Sue Sklair - continually enhance their skills by attending workshops on birth-related issues. Says Louisa: ‘We’re just back from the amazing Annual Midwifery & Birth conference in Cape Town, where this pic was taken, and are looking forward to continue providing the home-birth option for an increasing number of women wanting to reclaim their birth experiences.’ The trio also do home visits after hospital deliveries, helping many grateful new moms with breastfeeding and other baby matters. Call Louisa on 082 070 7421 to find out more.

Foto: Sarah Hume

JOINT EFFORT ENSURES GREAT GOLF DAY: Greenwood Independent School hosted its Mad Hatters golf day on Friday May 30. Says the school’s Lyndall Hill: ‘After waking to indifferent weather, some were rather sceptical that the event would proceed. However, a glorious day ensued and we are indebted to the many golfers and sponsors who supported this cause. Players entered into the spirit of the day with an array of crazy headgear, and the final scores a very close affair with overall winners being Des Seegers and Craig Fleisher on 49 points, equalled by runners up Norman and Justin Slack. Hearty congratulations, gentlemen! The event would not happen without the generous support of the community, service providers, and parents of the school. Thank you to everyone involved.’ Part of the Greenwood golf fun was a raffle for return tickets to either Johannesburg or Cape Town, thanks to CemAir, and pictured at right is lucky winner Sam Duncan.

SKONE WENNERS: Amber le Roux, 17 en in Graad 11, en Rihan de Bruyn, 18 en in Graad 12, is op 27 Mei as Mnr en Mej Wittedrift gekroon. Dié spoggeleentheid is jaarliks een van die hoogtepunte op die sosiale kalender van Hoërskool Wittedrift. Die wenners is uit 20 finaliste - 10 seuns en 10 dogters - gekies. ‘Soos altyd vantevore was vanjaar se poging deur die Graad 10 leerders en hul onderwysers ‘n reuse sukses. Die kroningsgeleentheid was baie spesiaal maar dit was veral die musiek-, dans- en sangitems wat die aand ekstra uniek en genotvol gemaak het. Ons skool het voorwaar talentvolle leerders,’ sê skoolhoof Jeremy Marallich.


Entertainment

11 June 2014

CXPRESS

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Your goose will be cooked if you Painter of beautiful Plettscapes miss out on this open invitation reveals his music mastery W

MEET THE COUPLE MCGUINNESS: Tony and Candy McGuinness invite you to the ‘best-kept secret’ dining experience, with front-row seats to Goose Valley’s 18th hole - and no, you don’t need to be a golfer! - Photos: Watty Watson

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ANDY and Anthony McGuinness recently took over the restaurant facility at Goose Valley Golf Club, after relocating to Plettenberg Bay from England, where Candy served Mentmore Golf & Country Club in Buckinghamshire as food, beverage and events manager. Delighted to be back in SA and extremely excited about this new venture, Candy says: “The restaurant at beautiful Goose Valley must be one of the best kept secrets around, as people we have spoken to seem to think that only members of the golf club are

afforded a table at this idyllically-situated restaurant. “This is not the case at all. The restaurant is open to the public - locals and visitors alike - and you can look forward to a warm welcome and tasty wholesome food at affordable prices when calling at Goose Valley.” The restaurant forms part of the pro shop complex and is beautifully situated adjacent to the 18th fairway, with breath-taking views of the mountains. This tastefully decorated venue is also perfectly geared to host weddings, parties and private functions of all kinds.

“We are in the process of revamping the menu, which we hope will appeal to the tastes of all diners,” advises Tony. “We will soon offer Sunday roasts and a Happy Hour on all drinks and, although not open for dinner during winter, we plan special events like Curry Nights, so please watch the press for up and coming events.” Meet the congenial couple McGuinness at Goose Valley Golf Club, or feel free to give them a bell on 044 533 0889 or 079 819 5899, or email info@goosevalleyclubhouse. co.za for more details or to make a booking.

HEN one googles ‘David Kantey’, a plethora of links pop up. Not that this super-creative Plett local needs much introduction, but we were curious about a possible revelation via the www... Is Dave, the creator of so many beautiful paintings around and about Plett, an artist first and foremost, or is music his primary passion? When it comes to the net, listings lean towards the ‘artist’ label, and on the UK site redbubble.com he says: “I am an artist / musician living in a beautiful coastal resort called Plettenberg Bay. “I’m equally passionate about art and music, not too sure which I prefer, though I started out in music.” So no definitive answer there. But we’re guessing Dave’s focus leans towards tunes at the moment, since he’s days away from launching his first CD. Titled NkhgVkfgu, it’s a personal milestone after nearly four decades of honing his musical skills. “My writing of music has changed a lot since the heady days of UCT Music School in the 70s. I now aspire to simplicity, the beauty and difficulty of creating melodies and interesting accompanying harmonies. “The CD has taken me two years - or roughly 2,000 hours of inspiration, sweat and tears to complete this particular cycle,” says Dave.

NO INTRO REQUIRED: David Kantey is an artist and musician who has made Plett prettier over the past decades

“The inspirational part usually arrives quickly, but to hone this into a finished piece of music takes me many hours of hard work. I enjoy all aspects of this process with a passion, and not

surprisingly a similar process unfolds with my creating artwork on canvass. “Recording began with the guitar track called NkhgVkfgu and then orchestrating it with strings. It is incredible to have an entire orchestra in a computer in one’s home! “These short pieces grew organically into the entire 48 minutes of the CD. It surprised me, as I had intended to record various other previously written guitar pieces, but they will have to wait their turn now.” Dave launches NkhgVkfgu next Friday - see the advert below, and see you there!


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CXPRESS

Food & Wine

11 June - 2014

A fisherman’s notes on cooking... mainly fish

Is Ghillie’s Stew a Mediterranean casserole? ALASTAIR GRANT revisits the places and people that left an indelible mark on his continuing personal culinary journey

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E once had a maid servant called Maria who lived in the Piesang Valley. When we came to Plett on holiday she cooked fish for us which we caught ourselves, or bought from the boats on the beach. There was no such thing as a fish shop then. Maria taught us how to light the paraffin stove and the lamps, and how to make pickled fish. She also made tomato bredie with lamb. We called this Ghillie’s Stew, because Maria’s husband was our dad’s ghillie. We were kids and we didn’t know that the recipe originally came from Europe - we just liked it a lot. Elizabeth David (see box at right) in her book Kvcnkcp" Hqqf (Penguin 1963, 65, 66, 67, 69, 70, 71, 72, and at least 10 other reprints) calls it ‘Kid in white wine’ after a recipe from Sardinia.

I wonder who brought it to the Cape - perhaps someone who employed Maria’s great-great-grandmother? Maria’s recipe was exactly the same, although she made it with lamb and of course, like us, she didn’t know where it originated. It is a very easy recipe, even for men... Ijknnkg‚u"Uvgy Take a lamb shoulder, a leg, or eight neck slices and a large sliced onion, three large tomatoes, a piece of celery, an orange, a sliced carrot, a teaspoon of crushed coriander seeds, garlic, herbs, off-dry white wine such as Cape muscadel, meat stock, and olive oil. You can leave out the turnip in the Sardinian recipe because it’s not in Maria’s. She usually added sliced potatoes in a layer over the top. Use a heavy iron casserole and brown the onion in a

dash of olive oil, take it out and then brown the meat. Cook it in one piece or small pieces dusted in flour and when it’s nice and brown, pour in a glass of white wine to deglaze it before it burns on the bottom. This works marvellously. Return the onions and add the coriander seeds and tomatoes, peeled and chopped (an 800gm can is fine.) Add a large piece of orange peel and another glass of wine augmented with stock enough to cover the meat. Finally, add a layer of sliced potatoes. Then it must be simmered for two hours with the lid on. I would simmer it for half an hour and put it in a hot-box* for at least four hours and save the fuel or electricity. When it’s tender, you may need to reduce the liquid in the pot. It should be thick, not watery. Hold back the meat and pour the liquid into a saucepan. This is the real art of cooking - getting the sauce right by reducing it and tasting it for flavour. Add salt if necessary. If the wine was too dry and made it sour, add some apricot jam, not sugar (this is a Cape recipe, not a KZN recipe) and stir it in while you cook it all down to a nice thick

sauce before returning it to the casserole pot for serving. Maria dished it up with rice, but my mother always insisted on a few green vegetables, too.

* A hot-box or hay-box is simply a Styrofoam box or a strong carton with insulated cushions stuffed with polystyrene pellets or other material - even shredded newspaper. The lidded pot is nestled on a cushion in the box and cov-

ered with an old towel. Then another cushion is placed on top. This preserves the heat for up to eight hours and food cooks slowly without burning. It’s the best way of cooking rice and casseroles, etc., as you don’t have to watch it.

Notes on a late great kitchen guru

UNFORGETTABLE: Elizabeth David’s life was remarkable and her legacy astonishing - her recipes stand the test of time and her brilliant writing was the outcome of racketing around the Mediterranean, travelling, drinking and eating alone in Italy, and holing herself up in Rosson-Wye with another man while her husband was in India - Caroline Stacey ‘The Independent’

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LIZABETH David would have been 100 on Boxing Day 2013. Her story has been well rehearsed: she came from a well-to-do family (her father was a conservative MP) but she did not have a happy childhood. She was sent to the Sorbonne to study art history, but returned to London to become an actress. She then left England and spent the war years around the Mediterranean (having been imprisoned in Italy as a spy)

in the company of such Bohemians as Lawrence Durrell and Alan Moorhead. She married a British officer in Cairo and went with him to India, but it didn’t last. She returned to London and began her writing career, becoming famous and influential, mixing with the likes of Terence Conran and Francis Bacon, and opening a shop in Pimlico, near her home in Chelsea. In 1963, she suffered a stroke and lost her sense of taste. Her later years were

troubled, and she had a serious car crash in 1977, from which she struggled to recover, though she remained revered, and loved, until her death in 1992. At Elizabeth David’s funeral, among the wreaths and baskets of flowers, and the violets she loved, someone left a loaf of bread and a bunch of herbs tied up in brown paper. Xkukv"yyy0tkejctfrikddu0 qti142361231gnk|cdgvj/ fcxkf0jvon"vq"tgcf" vjg"hwnn"uvqt{0

Sherry, sherry lady... As we steamed ahead with the production of this edition - ‘steam’ literally appearing each time we exhaled, once the cold front hit with a vengeance last Thursday - we learnt that we’re slap-bang in the middle of International Sherry Week! Of course we don’t imbibe alcohol when creating these pages for your reading pleasure, but the below bit by MICHAEL OLIVER inspired great pairing ideas for after-hour enjoyment on freezing winter nights...

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T’S International Sherry Week! They’re celebrating it in Spain, and as we make some outstanding wines in the same style, we are celebrating this week as well. As time goes by, I learn more about Douglas Green, founder of the eponymous wine company in Paarl some 72 years ago. As an Elsenburg graduate and a qualified viticulturalist and winemaker, Douglas Green had a reputation for his fine palate and tasting abilities. In 1916, his service in the Royal Navy placed him in Europe, and after the First World War he lived and worked in the Champagne region of France where he gained valuable experience, and brought the “first bulk sparkling wine fermentation process” to South Africa. He offered great wines, showing true varietal character at even-handed prices. He bottled sherry-style wines from a Sherry Bodega in the centre of Paarl from

which he made quite a name for himself. Today, these wines are still available and while European Union laws prevent us from calling it Sherry, the style of the wine is identical. There are three sherry-style wines in the Douglas Green Stable: Pale Dry No 1, Medium Cream No 2, and Full Cream No 3, all have the words Traditional Flor on the label, informing us that the wine has spent time in a Criadera or nursery under a blanket of fluffy white flor yeast which imbues them with their unique flavour. • It looks like: A rich amber in the glass. • It smells like: Barley sugar sticks, nuts and spice. You can small the sweetness there. • It tastes like: Rich, unctuous, deliciously sweet, honeyed. Nuts, oak spice. • It’s good with: Do serve it in a conventional wine glass this way you get much more of the pleasure of the special

TASTE MATES: Dalewood Huguenot is a hard cheese and perfect for enjoying with sherry-style wines - as is trifle, delicious take-aways of which you can collect from next weekend’s Vleisfees at Piesang Valley Community Hall (see the advert at left)

aromas and flavours. Chilled, it makes a perfect post-prandial drink. It also works well with desserts and a nutty hard cheese. And it’s the perfect addition to trifle, but perhaps best I don’t mention this! Visit www.isherryweek. com and www.michaeloliver. co.za for more information. RU<" Yg" crqnqikug" hqt" vjg" ejggu{" jgcfnkpg." yjkej" ku" c" fktgev"tguwnv"qh"itqykpi"wr"kp" vjg" :2u" cpf" vjwu" dgkpi" uwd/ lgevgf"vq"vjg"nkmgu"qh"uqhv/rqr" jqttqtu"nkmg"vjg"urtc{/vcppgf." dgcwv{/swggp" eqkhhgf." ujkp{/ uwkvgf" fwq" Modern Talking0" Iqqing"vjgkt"3;:7"jkv"flEjgtk" Ejgtk" Ncf{‚" cpf" vt{" vq" mggr" c" uvtckijv" hceg" yjgp" ycvej/ kpi"kv"rgthqtogf"nkxg"qp"[qw/ Vwdg000"/"Gfu0+


Home & Health

11 June 2014

CXPRESS

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Sasko crumbles under consumer pressure over yoga mat chemical

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ONSUMER groups scored a victory last month, when Sasko bowed to public pressure by fasttracking the removal of the so-called ‘yoga mat chemical’ from its bread and flour, although the company sees no reason to withdraw existing flour stock from retail shelves, saying they were within legal limits. But concerned consumer watchdogs see Sasko’s removal of Azodicarbonamide (ADA) from their production processes as an admission that the chemical should not have been used in the first place, and demand the removal of flour stocks. Furthermore, grouping potentially harmful chemical additives on food labels as “flour improvers” should be outlawed. Sasko came under fire in

past weeks for using ADA to bleach its flour, and improve the elasticity of bread dough. Watchdogs alerted the public to the fact that the reason why their baking was so fluffy and light, was the same reason why yoga mats and flip-flops are so elastic: ADA. Lulu Khumalo, Group Executive for Corporate Affairs & Sustainability for Pioneer Foods, yesterday confirmed that the company has removed ADA from its products as from Wednesday May 21, months ahead of its initial promised D-day of the end of July. There also seems to have been no communication to the public that it had done so. Asked if Sasko would be withdrawing its flour from shelves, Khumalo said: “ADA is neither a banned or illegal additive. In line with

our brand promise and as part of our quality improvement, we have now discontinued using it.” Most retailers and fast-food chains (like Pick n Pay, Woolworths, Steers and Wimpy) that still used the chemical, by May 27 confirmed its removal, or committed to a date to do so. “The flour these companies are putting on the shelves is not real - the flour is dead. It is not farmed conventionally. It is bleached, processed, spruced up with chemical concoctions, softeners and improvers like ADA,” says Debbie Logan, food activist and the force behind the Organic Emporium in Johannesburg. “The link between refined food and the rise of illness has been well established. Tests done on this chemical

Winter is the time to inter prim and thinking ‘winter proper Primulas garden’, the vibrant WHEN

COLOUR FOR YOUR JUNE GARDEN: Fairy Primrose (Primula malacoides), below, and English Primrose (Primula acaulis), top and bottom, are versatile and available in a sea of colours

palette offered by Primula malacoides (Fairy Primrose) and its cousin, Primula acaulis (English Primrose), are among the first thoughts that spring to mind. Planted en masse, the versatile Primula malacoides creates a sea of blooms that gives a real wild flower feel to your garden, but they’ll work equally well as border plants and in containers. Fairy Primrose is available in white, crimson, lavender, purple, pink and rose with adult plants reaching up to 45cm tall and 20cm across and will compliment your spring flowering bulbs beautifully by flowering well into summer. The English Primrose flowers in tight bunches and is much shorter than the Fairy, but offers a comparable range of colour, so remember to plant them in the front of your beds because its low height makes it an excellent choice for borders. Acaulis, meaning ‘without stem’, is quite a literal description, as their flowers seem to come straight out of the leaves. Sweating it out in the heat is not something acaulis do well, so they normally die down early in the summer. Nothing truly heralds the onset of spring like the prim and proper Primula. When your garden is at its most dormant, the spectrum of colour they provide is sure to lift you, and it, from the winter doldrums. You simply can’t afford to do without them this winter. Kphqtocvkqp"uwrrnkgf"d{" vjg"Dgffkpi"Rncpv"Itqygtu" Cuuqekcvkqp"⁄"xkukv"yyy0 nkhgkucictfgp0eq0|c"hqt" oqtg"kphqtocvkqp0

were convincing enough for Europe to ban it. If there are doubts, this flour should not be on our shelves.” She is very concerned about the cumulative effect of chemical additives. “This is not just about adding one thing to flour. What about the accumulation effect, when there is a list of additives in the flour that makes the bread, combined with additives in all the other products people consume. Have the effects of these over a 20-year period been researched?” Penny Zeffertt from the Bread Workshop in Northwest wants labelling changed to include the date of milling, so flour cannot be stored in warehouses, with labels that only carry a sell-by and useby date. Vjg"fl{qic"ocv"ejgokecn‚" gzrnckpgf ADA is legal in South Africa (not in the EU, Singapore or Australia) and does not have to be specified on product labelling. It is included in the general term ‘flour enhancer’. It is legal in the USA, but its use must be indicated on packaging. The chemical enhances flour, whitening it and increasing its elasticity. However, it is precisely this elas-

ticity that earned it the name of yoga mat chemical, as it is used to increase the stretchiness of plastic products. ADA is the baking powder of plastic, as it puts the bubbles into the sponge of shoes and sports mats. The use of ADA came under the spotlight in SA after successful public campaigns for its removal from the products of well-known food retailers in the USA.

‘ADA is the baking powder of plastic, as it puts the bubbles into the sponge of shoes and sports mats’ At the forefront was blogger Vani Hari from www. foodbabe.com, citing World Health Organisation research that found evidence linking ADA to asthma, respiratory afflictions, allergies and skin problems. Her campaign to have ADA removed from famous US sandwich brand Subway, gathered half a million signatures in 24 hours. Local watchdogs took the cue, and mobilised support to have ADA removed from flour and bread produced by Sasko.

By Monday May 26, retailers like Shoprite had received confirmation from Sasko that ADA had been removed from their bread products, although ADA-laced flour is still on the shelves. According to Khumalo, it is not used in maize flour. “Thanks to the additives, white flour can last for months on shelves - an indicator of how much of the nutritional value has been lost. There is also a perception among the public that ‘whiter is better.’ This is good reason to remove remaining stock from shelves,” says Zeffertt. Eqpvkpwgf"kortqxgogpv" pgeguuct{ Famous Brands - owner of well-known fast-food restaurants like Wimpy and Steers who used ADA in their breads - have learnt lessons about disclosure, says Darren Hele, CEO of Food Services. The company has committed itself to remove ADA from its products by July. “I agree that we cannot sit back on issues like these. The lesson learnt is that we need to interrogate the disclosures of products on the front end, although the onus is on the supply chain to look at the formulas they use. Cost is also a factor, as many of the additives are imported.”


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CXPRESS

11 June 2014

Classifieds


On the Soapbox

11 June 2014

Letters to the Editor

Email: editor@cxpress.co.za - Fax: 044 533 0852 - PO Box 1449, Plett 6600

No truth in flight-glitch rumour Late last month, CXPRESS became aware of a rumour doing the rounds in Plett, and as it threatened the longawaited recent return of scheduled commercial flights linking the town with Johannesburg and the Cape, it warranted investigation. Word on the street was that the navigational beacon at Plett Airport is broken, resulting in a period of all craft being diverted to George, in-

cluding some of the weekly CemAir flights. The grapevine further had it that the beacon in question could not be fixed because of some supply-chain glitch - more specifically, the situation was said to pertain to personal credit-record failings of some head of the Bitou municipal department in charge of matters relating to Plett Airport. Last claim in the tale was

Get facts straight before judging Dear Reverend Berning, in reply to your letter in CXPRESS of May 28, [read at www.cxpress.co.za] I am tempted to refer to a wellknown biblical verse which talks about being too quick to judge other people. However, for the sake of this letter, I will stick to the hcevu, which is something that not many people having been doing when it comes to the issue of elephant abuse allegations. You state that you have read or have heard about elephants being abused at a local elephant park. Well, based on your summary of the case, I question both your ability to read and/or listen. In an attempt to discuss this matter with you personally, we have tried to phone you a number of times but to no avail. For this reason, I will answer your ‘judgements’ in the same manner you presented them. Please allow me to clarify the following statements: You say “dreadful thing repeated right here in Plett”. This case actually occurred on a farm in Alexandria, Eastern Cape, more than 300km away. You say “a local park has a number of new baby elephants which they are bullying…” As already mentioned (but it probably bears repeating), the elephants were not at the local park and the photographs date back to 2008 - six years ago. The local park has worked tirelessly for the last 20 years to provide the best possible homes for elephants in need; now, through innuendo, twisted statements and lies, the

CXPRESS

name of this park is being dragged through the mud by uninformed people. But the truth will prevail. We know who we are and what we stand for, and we will continue to commit to the highest possible standards of elephant husbandry and welfare. You call for the “release of these baby elephants into a sanctuary where they may be healed and treated well”. It was the “local park” that, in 2008, took the wounded elephants in and nursed them back to health. One of the elephants, Gambo, is presently with us at Knysna Elephant Park and you are welcome to come and visit him. Which sanctuary would you propose they be released into? I challenge you to find another elephant facility in South Africa that offers the same level of care as your local park does! You call for an “investigation into the park’s methods of handling elephants”. You (and anyone else for that matter) are more than welcome to come to the park and view our elephants. If you would answer your phone, we could invite you to view an elephant handling session, in person, so the next time you want to judge someone, you can do it from a more informed pulpit. We look forward to your call. C"nq{cn"flnqecn"rctm‚" gornq{gg."Mp{upc *Xkukv" yyy0ezrtguu0eq0|c" cpf"xkgy"rcig"6"qh"vjg"Lwpg" 6"gfkvkqp"hqt"oqtg"kphqtoc/ vkqp"qp"vjg"gngrjcpv"cdwug" kuuwg0"⁄"Gfu0+

that not even the municipal manager could go over the offending official’s head to correct the situation. Well, if you read here and have heard the same tale told for truth, please peruse the letters below from three individuals who are very much in the know on the matter. Then, rest assured that nothing is threatening our link by air to these two major centres. - Eds. Pkeqngpg"O{dwtij"/" EgoCkt"jgcf"qh" Uejgfwngf"Ugtxkegu The claim that flights were diverted to George is not true. CemAir has diverted to George once due to bad weather and even with the NonDirectional Beacon (NDB) in place, that diversion could not have been avoided. CemAir has in fact invested close to R250,000 for the installation of a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) approach. The airport has already been surveyed and we are awaiting the design of the GNSS pattern in order to submit it to the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) for approval. Bookings are coming along nicely and we are running at about 45% load factor. We have also added flights to Plett on a Thursday afternoon from Johannesburg and back from Plett to Johannesburg on a Monday morning, so allowing the business traveller to commute. *Ugg" vjg" EgoCkt" cfxgtv" qp" rcig";"hqt"oqtg"kphq0+ Twuugnn"Jqpg{yknn"/" Dkvqw"Nqecn"Geqpqoke" Fgxgnqrogpv"qhhkegt It is indeed true that the NonDirectional Beacon at Plettenberg Bay Airport is currently not functioning, and a NOTAM* was issued in April in that regard. There is simply no truth to the allegation that aircraft are routinely being diverted to George. As CemAir stated, there has been one diversion to George Airport due to marginal weather when, in the interest of passenger safety, the pilot used his judgement and elected to land in George. Returning to the question of the NDB: the current situation is that the beacon has been disconnected and is being readied for shipment to Johannesburg for servicing. Once the service is completed, qualified technicians will come to Plettenberg Bay

to reinstall it and check that it is operating to the required standards. The quotation for the service is currently with Supply Chain Management for their approval of the expenditure and the service provider, as is required by Bitou municipal financial systems. In the meantime, Plett Airport continues to be open to aviators within the prescripts of the relevant Civil Aviation regulations. *A Notice to Airmen (NOTAM or NoTAM) is a notification filed with an aviation authority to alert aircraft pilots of potential hazards along a flight route, or at a location that could affect the safety of the flight. Fwrtê"Nqodcctf"/"Dkvqw" jgcf"qh"Uvtcvgike"Ugtxkegu There is no truth in any of the rumours! The NDB is ancient, and has been in service only sporadically. We tracked down someone in Gauteng who is able to repair it, and have been waiting on authorisation for this process, as this person has not been registered on our municipal database before. This is a legal prescription and has nothing to do with anyone’s credit record, or any such sinister suggestions. State institutions are not allowed to do business with any organisation or person whose tax matters are not in order, except in special cases involving minor amounts. Our financials have closed on April 29 for new expenses for the past book year, so we could also not repair the beacon, except if the work and all paperwork involved would be completed before the end of June. There is truly no rush to repair the NDB. It has been out of service since October last year and most definitely completely out of action since the beginning of the year, way before CemAir started its scheduled flights. These days, most aircraft fly with GPS, with no need for NDBs. The beacon basically served to get only certain people to Plett Airport safely, for example pilots who can’t navigate - and they’re very few and far between! No flights are diverted to George as a result of the NDB’s state. We have released a Notice to Airmen in this regard, so pilots are aware of the fact that an NDB is not available, and that they have to navigate their own way to Plett Airport.

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Read CXPRESS online @ www.cxpress.co.za


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CXPRESS

Read CXPRESS online @ www.cxpress.co.za

Sport & Adventure

11 June 2014

SOCCER WORLD CUP FOR DUMMIES

Samba, sun and soccer - and Argentina or Brazil to win The world’s biggest sporting bonanza starts tomorrow when the Soccer World Cup kicks off, with hosts Brazil taking on Croatia in a Group A clash in Sao Paulo - GLENN MURRAY gives us the lowdown

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painstaking four-year qualification process involving 5,705 players from 206 countries having played 820 matches - has whittled WC 2014 representatives down to just 32 countries. These teams have been placed into eight groups of four teams each. They will now play in a round-robin group phase that will see the top two teams progressing to the knockout phase. Brazil is the undisputed home of football and they are the world’s most successful soccer nation, having won the WC a ridiculous five times. They are again one of the favourites, but this tag often proves to be the undoing of many good teams. Hometown pressure rather than hometown support may be their downfall. Argentina are looking unstoppable and they cruised through qualification. If they can delay the infighting and bickering which so often unsettles this nation, then they must be a firm favourite. Geographically they are neighbours with the hosts and therefore they will have thousands of vocal travelling supporters. Holland, Spain and Italy all qualified with ease and a wager on any of these three may be money well spent. Holland and Spain are in the same group, adding extra spice to the first week of the tournament and their clash should be one of the matches of the WC. (Remember the 2010 WC final played in South Africa four years ago?)

LUMINARIES OF THE PITCH: It remains to be seen if veterans like Italian Andrea Pirlo, above, and Ivorian Didier Drogba, below, will be stealing the WC 2014 show, or if the limelight will be hogged by new kids on the block like the massively talented Brazilian, Neymar

Councillor, are you sportin’?

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NYSNA Municipality recently facilitated the establishment of a sport council for the town. Municipal manager Lauren Waring explained that the role of this new body was to create an environment conducive for the development of sport while strengthening sports structures at local government level. “The formation of this platform is a bid to make sport in Knysna more inclusive and it is hoped that its strategies will ultimately translate into viable programmes, thus creating a vibrant and sustainable sports brand for Knysna,” said Waring. The process of establishing the council started in February by the selection of wardbased sport forums in all wards of the municipal area. An interim working group was elected to work on a draft constitution under the leadership of Eden Sport Council

president Goliath Munro. In a landmark meeting on May 27, the representatives elected the first Knysna Sport Council, which also boasts being the first council within the Western Cape to elect five female representatives to its executive committee. Under chairlady Luleka Kwitshane and vice chair Neil Louw, elected members are Sarie Exton (secretary), Uschi Schultz (treasurer), Picca de Bruyn (sport for disabled), Lorenzo van Aswegen, Debra Hyde, Vumile Yonzi, and Faizel Bambi. There were 30 representatives from the different wards, and each ward had two representatives with voting rights. Waring concluded that the future of sport in Knysna is a collective action: “We trust that the work of the council will transform the sporting environment to benefit all communities of Knysna.”

Germany and Chile are looking strong, but England not. They are an average team with very little expectations… perhaps this is what they need. They are in a tough group and it looks like English Premiership player of the season Luis Suarez (Uruguay) in a strange twist may have the final say in England’s progression. South Africa did not qualify for the WC and by failing to beat Botswana and Ethiopia they justified their tag as 65th best team in the world. This tag is a shocking underachievement and again shows the tragic state of government-influenced sport administration in this country. Soccer is massive business and the star players are giant draw-cards. This year, two of the biggest stars - Lionel Messi (Argentina) and Christiano Ronaldo (Portugal) are preparing to light up the event, along with new stars Diego Costa (Spain) and Neymar (Brazil), and veteran Andrea Pirlo (Italy). Yaya Touré, Samuel Eto’o, Shola Ameobi, Michael Essien and Didier Drogba are the African stars representing the five African countries taking part, namely Algeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Cameroon, and they will hopefully take an African team into the semi-final - something that has never happened before. Ghana have a tough group but Ivory Coast and Nigeria should progress to the next round and if they do, conditions may seem more favourable to the Africans than to the players coming all the way from Europe. Outside bets will be placed on surprise package Belgium and the talented Columbia, but don’t expect too much from the debutants BosniaHerzegovina. The first game kicks off on June 12 and the final takes place five weeks later, on Sunday July 13. All you rugby fanatics out there: ‘Give soccer a chance’. It’s not just about over-paid players falling down all day and yobs in the stands hurling abuse. This is the greatest spectacle on the sporting calendar and it only happens every four years. Enjoy.


June 11