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New Year with Jozi Magic Page 8
Stories from the African continent
Pray for Afcon ‘This is a unique opportunity for the faithful from all religious traditions and denominations to devote a small but significant part of their service to an initiative that benefits all the people of Johannesburg’ Moses Moyo email@example.com
City Manager Trevor Fowler Pic : Inner-city Press Agency
he City of Johannesburg is appealing to faith-based communities in Johannesburg to pray for the successful hosting of the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations and to urge their followers to support the tournament. “We encourage our faith-based communities to pray for the successful organisation of the tournament, and also for our national team as they meet in churches, mosques, synagogues and other places of worship. The City has earmarked the weekend starting on Friday 11 January to Sunday 13 January as the official “AFCON Prayer Weekend,” says Johannesburg’s City Manager, Trevor Fowler. “This will be clear and powerful demonstration of unity within the city
and will send out a strong message of support to the organisers of the tournament and to Bafana Bafana.” Fowler says the request for prayers is being extended to the entire spectrum of religious communities in the City. “This is a unique opportunity for the faithful from all religious traditions and denominations to devote a small but significant part of their service to an initiative that benefits all the people of Johannesburg.” The Orange Africa Cup of Nations is the biggest multinational event to be held in Johannesburg since the successful hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. It will bring together thousands of football enthusiasts from across Africa for a three week celebration of the continent’s best teams and superstar players. Fowler says faith-based communities responded exceptionally well
to support the 2010 World Cup and ensured community participation in the City’s hosting of the event. “We want to rekindle that spirit of enthusiasm, commitment and volunteerism during AFCON 2013 and we are confident that our religious communities will again take the lead to mobilise support,” he says. “AFCON 2013 will be a period of great celebration for the people of Johannesburg. We encourage residents and visitors to our city to wear the colours of the national team to demonstrate their support, and we trust that this initiative will also be visible at places of worship,” said Fowler. The Africa Cup of Nations opening ceremony on 19 January and the final match on 10 February will be held at the National Stadium, commonly known as Soccer City.
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Joburg school’s pass rate improves
Principal Nokuthula Timile Pic: inner-city Press Agency
Moses Moyo firstname.lastname@example.org
he matric pass rate at Metropolitan College in the Joburg CBD improved by 22.5 % after its matriculants obtained 23 distinctions in the 2012 examinations. The principal of the private school, Nokuthula Timile said her school achieved a 82.35 % pass. “This makes us one of the top performing institutions in Gauteng. Combined effort, diligence and endurance led us to our success. From the whole group of our 2012 matriculants seven started from Grade One at the school, and were
‘Combined effort, diligence and endurance led us to our success’ nurtured there. The others joined up in Grade Nine and Ten.” She added that teachers identified students with learning difficulties and targeted them with specialist help. “They were also offered extra tutorials, which led to pass rates of 64.3% or better in most areas. Our teachers have put tremendous effort in supporting every student, and this is paying off.” Timile added that their vision now is to make their school the best performing one in the country. The college is currently registering learners for 2013 and can be contacted on 011 402 9502. It enrols pupils from Grade 1 to 12.
From left: Matriculants Makolo Kanku and Xavier Muhoni pose with Principal Mervin Frank and his deputy Mr Chauke. Pic : inner-city Press Agency
Berea school makes history
Moses Moyo email@example.com arnato Park High school in Berea has produced some of the country’s top matriculants. It was the school’s first year of offering GDE examinations, having previously offered IEB exams. The school received a 78% pass rate. Matriculant Xavier Muhoni scored six distinctions, Makolo Kanku got four distinctions and Prisca Ntumba had three. Makolo will study Mechanical Engineering at Wits University. He said success depends on discipline,
hard work and the support of family and teachers. Xavier, who will study Actuarial Science, also at Wits University, said the secret to success is to stay focussed on one’s goals. “Students must stay away from unnecessary distractions.” According to the school’s principal Mervin Frank, 125 learners sat for the exams, 95 passed and 27 were unsuccessful. “The matric results have been the best ever for our school. It’s the first time in its history that we have so many distinctions; they have put the school on the map. Their dedication, discipline and good ethos to-
wards school were excellent, hence their success.” Deputy principal Edward Chauke said the students have made the school and the Berea community proud. “Berea is known for bad things, and with these achievements the community will embrace its academic prowess,” he added. The school has an after-school outreach programme at St John’s College, where the successful students attended extra tutorial lessons. Gauteng education MEC Barbara Creecy said the pass rate in Joburg central increased by 12%, from a 67.8% last year to 79.9% this year.
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We congratulate the Matric Class of 2012 including Matrics who got their IEB results last week, most of whom are lucky enough to be called ‘born-frees’, on their results. We are encouraged by the slight improvement of 3,7% on the 2011 national senior certificate exam results, however much more still needs to be done. The improved results demonstrate that young people are serious about their development and achieving economic freedom in our lifetime. The ANC Youth League appeals to matrics who were not successful in their exams not to give up but explore all their options including rewriting their exams. Unemployment is one of the biggest challenges facing our country and education is a key solution of addressing this challenge. We therefore appeal to government, the private sector and other stakeholders including NSFAS to continue supporting our young people to develop further in order to prepare them for the world of work. Our tertiary institutions are unable to absorb all matrics who have passed. As such our young people are reminded to consider all further study options for available to them, including enrolling at vocational training at Further Education and Training Colleges. We remind our government to prioritize delivering on their promise of building additional universities. Nompumelelo Hlophe ANCYL Head of Education and Skills
Comment As we look forward to a prosperous 2013 we wish the best of luck for every community member in all their endeavours. A new year brings fresh beginnings, and also plenty of opportunities to get involved in. This is especially so with the 2012 matriculants who received their results recently. As we welcome them into the real world we hope they focus on improving their prospects for a better life. Many of those who passed would like to further their education and obtain professional qualifications to help them secure rewarding employment and business prowess. There are many institutions to help them acquire working skills, which include universities and FET colleges. In recent days there have been long queues at universities when aspiring students sought places. They had however been advised to apply online, and if they had done so they would have saved a lot of time and money. In this parents and guardians have to be wary of making the error of enrolling their children in bogus institutions. This has been witnessed over the years, especially involving matriculants who were not successful in their examinations. The Education Department provides programmes for them to study and rewrite their examinations, and this year the registration deadline is 21 January. Some of those who have rewritten the exam in the past passed with distinctions. Some parents may not have enough money to pay for university or FET college education for their children. This often leads to the youths joining the jobseeking queues in the city. Some of those may not secure desired employment because they lack the skills or experience required in the jobs market. Nevertheless, whatever employment they find would be helpful in helping them to survive; and they may also save enough money to help them enroll for further education in the future.
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People with a strong will to survive They wake up in the morning, often earlier than those who are employed Vanessa McLaughlin of Newtown writes:
am fascinated by community members who survive from collecting items like cardboard, plastics and bottles that have been thrown away, and selling them to recycling companies. People who do not understand what these people are going through, and their need to do that, often despise them and call them all those bad names. What I see in them is a strong will to survive in an otherwise impossible environment. Often these are people who have realized that they may not be able to get employed, and so instead of spending time standing in street corners and doing nothing they decided to employ themselves. These are strong men and women who believe in hard work, who will not sit back and cry, or blame the government for not giving them jobs, but stand up and do something for their families and themselves. In this festive season they have nothing to celebrate, and instead use the opportunity to find even more items that are discarded to carry to the market. They wake up in the morning, often earlier than those who are employed, and go out in search of the materials for sale to recycling companies. They do not even mind getting their hands deep into the dustbins in search of
A man drags a trolley laden with recyclable materials in Joburg. Pic: Kultcha / Features
the things they want to sell. Most of them work without protective gear like gloves or overalls. Many of them like to collect discarded cardboard as it is available in almost all the streets, especially where there are shops. Many shop owners order their goods in the cardboard, which they throw away, and that is where these men
and women come in. The way they transport the materials is also interesting. Some of them pile up their carts so much that they struggle to push them. Some of them ride on their carts at speeds almost the same as motor vehicles in the streets. Some motorists get annoyed by these people, and sometimes shout at
them to get off the road. What such motorists do not realize is that these people also need to survive, just like them. So I urge the motorists to be patient with them, and please do not run them over because you do not need to do that at all. Something else is that these people contribute a great deal in keeping a clean environment. They pick up all the bottles you throw away after drinking your cool drink or beer, and also pick up all the pieces of metal you throw away, leaving your area without litter. So these people are important in our own survival. I only hope the recycling companies they sell these materials to do not cheat them on their hard work, and pay them enough for them to sustain a living. In conclusion I have to challenge those unemployed who spend all their time standing in street corners doing nothing to consider doing the same. The old saying says an idle mind is the Devil’s workshop. It is of no use for them to spend their time doing nothing, as it may as well lead to them getting tempted to be involved in crime, and ending up in jail or killed. They may as well get drawn into drug and alcohol abuse, which would ruin their lives. See a supportive article in www.jhblive.com/kultcha/ features/eco-cleaners/22105.
10 - 17 January 2013
Above: Security officers wade in the dagga field. Below: The dagga is loaded into a police van.
Dagga plantation discovered
Hillbrow police chief Brig Ntandane with the Bad Boyz security officers. Pics : inner-city Press Agency
Crime Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
A group of Bad Boyz security officers on a routine clean-up discovered a dagga plantation behind the Tygerberg apartment building in Tudhope Avenue, Berea. A spokesperson for the group said they were surprised when
they stumbled upon the plantation, which had nearly 100 two metre tall plants in a 50m2 area behind the building. “The plants are at a ripening stage, having been planted about six months ago,” he added. Hillbrow police chief, Brig Vukile Ntandane, who also attended the scene, said whoever planted the dagga will be brought to justice.
“Criminals must know there is nowhere for them to hide their activities, and we always catch them.” Hillbrow police officers and the Bad Boyz security personnel uprooted the plants, which were then loaded into police vans and transported to the police station.The cops estimated the dagga to be worth R100 000 street value.
Memorial for ex-PAC leader Steve Lefophana email@example.com he works of late PAC secreatary Joe Mkhwanazi (pictured above), who died in December, were recently honoured at a memorial service at the Methodist Church in Braamfointein. Mkhwanazi, who spent 30 years in exile left four daughters and one son. Sanele Twala, his daughter said her father was a selfless and commited political stalwart who secrificed his family to achieve freedom for all. “Being a teacher, he took a decision to leave his family and join the PAC. He passed on unhappy about the current status of the PAC. He lamented inequality, disrespect, corruption and factionalism with the PAC,” she added. Mkwanazi’s commanded the underground structures in Swaziland and assisted hundreds of youths after the 1976 uprisings. He later moved to Tanzania. African People’s Convention president Themba Godi said Mkhwanazi’s death is a great loss for the PAC and South Africa.
focuS on AfricA
Gunmen seize cop chief Benghazi - Armed men have kidnapped the acting head of the criminal investigation department Abdelsalam alMahdawi, Prime Minister Ali Zeidan has announced. Interior Minister Ashour Shwayel said al-Mahdawi was abducted at a traffic intersection on his way to work. He said it is not yet known who was behind the attack, and promised to find the officer and the perpetrators. Libyan authorities have been struggling to provide security since Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in 2011. Last November, Benghazi’s police chief was assassinated in a drive-by shooting. Over a dozen other security officers were killed last year in the city where the uprising began. Security officials have been quoted as saying al-Mahdawi ‘had many enemies’. “He had files on everyone, Gaddafi loyalists, hardline Islamists and common criminals,” said one official. A group of police officers has staged a protest against the kidnapping. There has been a series of attacks against diplomatic missions and aid agencies in the city, which included the killing of the US embassador in September last year. There have also been attacks against Sufi shrines and mosques, which are blamed on militant Islamists.
Arch foes in peace deal
Govt critic’s dubious death
Malabo - Press rights group Reporters Without Borders has voiced suspicions about the death of government critic and press freedom activist Manuel Nzé Nsongo in November last year, and family members suspect he was poisoned. The group said it may not say whether he died of natural causes or was murdered. Rumours of poisoning are common after government opponents die. Nsongo fell ill after attending a working lunch with Information Minister Agustín Nzé Nfumu, and died two days later. An autopsy was not done, and there is no evidence to support claims that he was murdered. Nsongo was President Obiang Nguema’s Head of Protocol from 1979 to 1991, and held the same position at the Foreign Ministry from 1991 to 1994. He became a media freedom activist and president of the Equatorial Guinea Press Association in 1996. He founded two newspapers, El Tiempo and La Opinión. Despite strongly criticising the government, Nsongo avoided direct confrontation with President Nguema’s close associates. Equatorial Guinea is ranked 161 out of 179 countries in the latest press freedom index.
10 - 17 January 2013
Addis Ababa - Sudan and South Sudan have agreed to abide by timelines to implement security, oil and border deals stalled for over three months. AU mediator Thabo Mbeki said Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and his South Sudan counterpart Salva Kiir recommitted to the key deals. The announcement offered fresh hope of a breakthrough to end the crisis.The leaders also agreed to set up a long-delayed demilitarised zone along their disputed border, a condition to resume oil exports. The deals, signed last year but never implemented, include restarting of southern oil exports through northern pipelines, and reopening of border points for general trade. They also included the withdrawal of troops from contested border regions to create a demilitarised buffer zone. Ethiopian PM Hailemariam Desalegn, who hosted the talks, said he was satisfied with the progress. Also on the agenda was the contested Abyei flashpoint. Sudanese troops withdrew from the area in May 2012 after an occupation that forced over 100 000 people to flee towards South Sudan. Khartoum accuses South Sudan of supporting rebels operating in Sudan, and in turn the South also says Sudan backs insurgents on its territory.
Rebel leader blasts DRC
SA troops to halt rebel advance Bangui - South African soldiers have been deployed in the Central African Republic (CAR) to help stop a rebel advance that threatens to overthrow the government of President Francois Bozize. The South African government said the troop deployment is part of efforts to bring peace in the region. It added that the 400
SANDF troops would assist with capacity building of the CAR army and also assist with disarmament and re-integration to deal with the Seleka rebel alliance , which has seized 12 towns since December 10. Chad, Cameroon, Gabon and Congo Republic have also sent troops there to prevent rebels from reaching the capital Bangui.
Kigali – The M23 rebel leader Jean-Marie Runiga has accused the DRC government of delaying the Kampala peace talks by not signing a ceasefire and acquiring reinforcement from Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) rebels. At a press briefing in Bunagana, Runiga said the DRC ignores atrocities committed by the FDLR, DR Congo based rebels made up of elements responsible for the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi, in which one million people were killed. “While we are committed to finding a peaceful resolution to the crisis, President Joseph Kabila supports and deploys the FDLR. This violates the terms under which we agreed to pull out of Goma. The Congolese Army has formed a coalition with the FDLR and other militias, and the FDLR are already operating in Goma in the cover of the 41st Seleka comprises three armed groups that Battalion commandoes of FARDC,” he said. accuse Bozize’s government of failing to The M23 rebels captured the border city of Goma honour a 2007 peace deal, under which fightlate last year, but pulled out after the Kinshasa govers who stopped fighting were to be paid. Jean-Marie Runiga ernment agreed to hold peace talks with them.
Pics: inner-city Press Agency A group of men get ready to receive rations at the park in Nugget Street, Joubert Park.
Group caters for
Pastor Fashwanayo (left) supervises the distribution of meals to the poor.
Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
Randburg based religious organisation, Changing Nations Ministries helps to feed and improve the lives of the destitute in Joburg. Spokesperson Pastor Modetse Mfashwanayo says they have been providing daily meals for the homeless in the Joburg inner-city for the past four months, having started by working with the Meth-
odist Church and its Bishop Paul. “The community is faced with challenges, and so we decided to do a little and make a difference before the challenge develops into a tragedy.” Pastor Mfashwanayo adds that his organisation aims at caring for the needy and marginalised by providing food, clothing, shelter, education and other necessities for them. “We strive to contribute to community building and rehabilita-
tion of family life through Church networking, counselling, health centres and schools. We work towards promoting food security, clean water, peace, economic justice and gender equality.” He adds that his organisation does not receive any funding from any other organisation. “It’s just a few families contributing from our own pockets to help the needy of our society. But any person or organisation wishing to help us support the needy is welcome.”
Pastor Fashwanayo says they feed about 70 homeless people in downtown Joburg every day. “We also help them get into skills training programmes and secure employment. Among them are skilled people with university and college education, and also talented individuals from the grassroots, and we help them improve their lives in programmes that also include prayer and counselling.” He dismisses the perception that the homeless are criminals.
“There may be some bad people among them, just like in any community, but those we deal with are keen to improve their lives in an honest manner.” Pastor Mfashwanayo adds that his organisation also runs a feeding scheme for destitute children in Alexandra. “There are many orphans in the area who need help, and we do as best as we can.” He can be reached though 0738426600. For more details visit www.cnministries.co.za.
10 - 17 January 2013
A participant drags a colourful float ant Mandela Bridge.
Oversised masks and a reminder of the coming Afcon soccer tourney. Pics: Mariola Biela
New Year with Jozi magic
oburg inner-city was turned into a spectacle of colour, music and dance on New Year’s eve when the 9th Jozi Carnival made its way through the streets, and ended with a fantastic Music Countdown Concert at Mary Fitzgerald Square in Newtown. The route began in Hillbrow, then went through Braamfontein and over the Mandela Bridge and finally
Newtown. Residents were treated to a flamboyant and electrifying vision alive with gigantic puppets, stilt walkers and mesmerising floats. Organised by the City of Johannesburg under the theme, Jozi Lights Up GDS 2040, participants of the carnival came from all the seven regions. The number swelled from 1 000 last year, to 1 300 this year.
Joburg Mayor Parks Tau congratulated the participants for the hard work in preparations for this great day. He reiterated MMC for community development Chris Vondo’s assertion that the Joburg Carnival has really come into its own, as community members pull together to proudly display their floats. The Afcon Cup float was a particu-
A scene in Mies Julie
A testament to the resiliency of the human heart, spirit and beliefs Arts Correspondent Arts Correspondent he Market Theatre, in association with Dr John Kani, presents The Island at the Barney Simon Theatre as from 16 January and up to 24 March. The play was written by Athol Fugard, John Kani (pictured above), and Winston Ntshona. It is directed by John Kani, starring Atandwa Kani and Nat Ramabulana. The world has changed very significantly since this play was first performed in 1973, when it was illegal for three playwrights to meet, let alone collaborate on a rebellious piece of literature. But through the creation of this brilliant two-hander, Athol Fugard, John Kani and Winston Ntshona brought to life a tale that took the world by storm and helped to persuade America to impose sanctions in South Africa. The Island tells the story of two prisoners on Robben Island, John and Winston, who are rehearsing a performance of Sophocles’ Antigone. When John learns his sentence is being reduced, the men’s friendship is tested. The play explores the parallels be-
tween Antigone’s fight against political and patriarchal boundaries and the imprisoned men’s fight for dignity. The Island stands as a testament to the resiliency of the human heart, spirit and beliefs. This time the play is performed by a new generation of actors: Atandwa Kani, who was last seen at the Market in The Miser, will play John; and Nat Ramabulana, last seen in The Girl in the Yellow Dress, will play Winston. John is a dreamy idealist, desperate to make a success of their two-man production of Antigone and John is a more reluctant performer, who has an eye on his impending freedom. Recent reruns of classic South African plays at the Market, including Siswe Banzi is Dead and Woza Albert! have proved that there is a huge audience for these plays, especially as interpreted by the new generation of theatre practitioners. The Island is just as resonant in today’s South Africa as it was earlier; as we are still doing battle in our contemporary democracy for freedom of expression, and how that might be at odds with the dignity of the State.
lar hit as it paraded past the crowds to welcome all the countries that will be taking part in the tournament. The City of Johannesburg will in the next two weeks host the opening and closing games of the Orange Afcon Cup.“The children who took part were so excited and proud to display their costumes as well as their dance moves, that had taken
months of preparation,” said Vondo. The carnival ended on a high note, when the City hosted the Countdown Music Concert at Mary Fitzgerald Square, where the residents welcomed the New Year and celebrated diversity. Thousands of revellers counted down the end of 2012 and entered 2013 to the beats of Arthur, Judith Sephuma, Chommee and Mandoza.
Mesmerising theatrical experience
Youthful twist in classic remake
10 - 17 January 2013
he Market Theatre presents the production, Mies Julie at the Barney Simon Theatre between 17 January and 24 February. The smash-hit play, written and directed by Yael Farber, has been hailed as an international triumph and it has already received unprecedented acclaim, scooping two top awards and garnering numerous five-star reviews at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Five star reviews were received from over 10 arts reviewers in publications which include the Scotsman, the Guardian, the Herald, London Evening Standard, The Times, ScotsGay Magazine and Three Weeks as well as numerous blogs. Renowned theatre critic Dominic Cavendish of the Telegraph said Farber has enjoyed successes, but this year the dream has come true in a way that has taken even her breath way. “She has a sellout hit on her hands, the subject of five-star raves and the kind of word of mouth that means it’s only a matter of time before what looks, at the end of the second week of the Fringe, like the big ‘find’ of this year.”
Portrayal of a potent convergence point of domination, domestic practicality and untenable sadness
Farber has assembled a formidable team led by Thoko Ntshinga as Christine with Bongile Mantsai as John and Hilda Cronje as Julie. Canadian brothers Daniel and Matthew Pencer provide the music for the production with their unique sound, in collaboration with Thandiwe Lungisa from the Ngqoko Cultural Group. Set design is by Patrick Curtis, lighting is by Paul Abrams and the assistant director is Zoleka Helesi. When Miss Julie was performed at the Baxter and Market Theatres in 1985 in apartheid South Africa, starring Sandra Prinsloo and John Kani, it created much controversy. It was the cross-colour kiss on a South African theatre stage which sparked a national outcry by right-wing Afrikaners involving protests, death threats and immense pressure on the Censor Board to ban the production. Following this the production went on to be performed at the Edinburgh Festival. Farber tackles the deeper complexities and locates the play against the remote, bleak beauty of the Eastern Cape Karoo. Her probing adaptation looks at a post-traumatic society and the knot of inheritances and legacies
that entangle lives in the aftermath. Haunting and violent, intimate and epic, the struggles between the three individuals reach to address issues of restitution and the reality of what can and cannot ever be recovered. Transposed to a post-apartheid kitchen - a potent convergence point of domination, domestic practicality and untenable sadness - a single night, both brutal and tender, unfolds between a black farm labourer, the daughter of his ‘master’ and the woman who has raised them both. The visceral struggles of contemporary South Africa are laid bare in this domestic setting, as a deadly battle over power, sexuality, memory, mothers and land spirals out of control between John and Julie. “The events reflect the larger dilemmas of the nation and today’s world. The tensions so central to Strindberg’s original text assume deeper proportions in this adaptation. It is a disturbing yet mesmerising theatrical experience that reaches to address restitution and the reality of what can and cannot ever be recovered,” Farber says. For more info call 011 832 1641.
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Captain Bongani Khumalo leads his team mates in training. Bafana linkman Reneilwe Letsholonyane moves past a Norwegian marker during the last game.
‘We have to work on using our possession better, especially from the back, and get the ball moving forward much quicker’
Bafana’s positive outlook Soccer Correspondent
afana Bafana coach Gordon Igesund believes that the team is showing positive signs of improvement. The team lost 1-0 to Norway in Cape Town on Tuesday night, but
Igesund was pleased with their overall performance and is confident that they will be ready for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations tournament starting on 19 January. “We have to work on using our possession better, especially from the back, and get the ball moving
forward much quicker,” he said. Despite losing to a second-string Norway team, Igesund was pleased with the scoring chances that were created by his side. Bafana wasted many good chances, but Igesund insists it will all come right at the Africa Cup of Nations tourney.
“What is important is that we created the opportunities. I’m not worried at the moment; we’ll get it right,” he said. The Bafana coach insisted that the team will be a difficult team to beat when the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations tournament starts.
Bafana Bafana captain and defender Bongani Khumalo said Bafana strikers should get ‘more ugly’ (more aggressive) in the penalty area. During the Norway match strikers Katlego Mphela and Thuso Phala wasted several great scoring opportunities.
Tribute to boxing legend He fought in Australia and Mexico, facing some of the best featherweight and lightweights of the time Ron Jackson Legendary boxer Athony “Blue Jaguar” Morodi (pictured) died aged 69 at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in December last year. Morodi was a triple SA champion who fought from 1964 to 1978 and compiled a record of 96-25-3, including 32 knockouts. He held the national bantamweight, junior lightweight and lightweight titles. In 1968 and 1969 Morodi took part in 29 fights; more than some boxers have in a career. In August 1968 he had four fights, winning them all. He also fought in Australia and Mexico, facing some of the best featherweight and lightweights of the time. Born on the farm Potloodspruit
near Lydenburg in 1943, Morodi is well remembered as the fighter who stood on his head to make the weight before a title fight. It happened on March 4, 1972, when he was scheduled to defend his SA lightweight title against Moses Mthembu at Curries Fountain in Durban. He was over the limit at the morning’s weigh-in and trainer Theo Mthembu calmly told him to stand on his head while a couple of camp members massaged his legs. After a few minutes, Morodi got back on the scale. This time, he was within the limit and he went on to retain his title when he knocked out the challenger in the 11th round. As an amateur in 1963, Morodi won the Johannesburg and District and Transvaal amateur feather-
weight titles, but was beaten in the final of the SA championships. The next year he again won the Joburg and District and Transvaal featherweight titles before turning professional on December 5. He won his first fight in the second round by stopping Amos Nkosi. Morodi won his first professional title in October 1966 when he outpointed Mohamed Patel for the vacant Transvaal featherweight title. After an unbeaten string of eleven fights, he went on to win the SA bantamweight title by beating Caswell Juqula on points at the Orlando Stadium in December 1967. In October 1968, he lost to future WBA bantamweight champion Arnold Taylor in six rounds in Maseru. Because of weight problems,
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Morodi relinquished the bantamweight title and moved up to lightweight. He won the Transvaal title when he stopped Eric Mahlo in the ninth round. After retaining the belt against Victor Tshabalala and Eric Mahlo, he beat Commonwealth lightweight champion Percy Hales of Jamaica on points over 10 rounds. On November 15, 1969, Morodi won the SA title in the newly created junior lightweight division when he beat Richard Borias over 12 rounds. Three months later he captured the SA lightweight title, winning on points against one of the legends the
ring, Enoch “Schoolboy” Nhlapo. The tough fighter lost only five fights inside the distance. In one of these he was stopped in the seventh round by Pat Hlabagane after suffering a bad cut on his forehead. His only other stoppage losses were to Nkosana “Happyboy” Mgxaji in June 1974 when he challenged for the SA junior lightweight title, and to Andries Steyn and Peet Bothma at the end of his career. But in October 1974 he was still good enough to beat Jim Watt of Scotland at the Rand Stadium. Watt went on to win the WBC lightweight title in April 1979.
NFD League Fixtures Saturday, February 16, 2013 15:30 Milano United AFC v Polokwane City - Grassy Park Stadium 19:30 Jomo Cosmos v Roses United - Johannesburg Stadium