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STORIES FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT PAGE 7

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NO BETTER TIME THAN NOW

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Motivation for SA writers Dr Brenda Flanagan receives a gift from the Assistant Director of the Joburg Library Tsakane Shuburi.

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NEWS

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Increasing Monument for smash’n grabs struggle women Akhona Zibonti akhona@inner-city-gazette.co.za

The concept must show that it is a relay, it must depict the history, activities, provide knowledge, develop consciousness and make a difference for generations to come

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mash and grab crimes are increasing in Hillbrow because of carelessness, says Visible Policing head cluster coordinator Col Shereen Swartz (pictured). “This is to urge victims to be more careful as there is an increasing rate of theft in the area. It does not matter whether the car is moving or stationary, the perpetrator will either break the window or open the locked door and grab whatever is of value,” Col Swartz says. She adds that all cars that have been burgled in Hillbrow have shown that there was either a cellphone or laptop that was visible and tempted the criminals. He then offered the following tips to prevent smash-and-grab crimes. • Do not leave your cellphone or anything that is of value visible as it can attract thieves who may break your window. • Lock all doors and close all windows, thieves steal handbags and other valuables by opening doors or even breaking windows while the car is stationary at traffic lights or

Persistance Nkomo persie.nkomo@inner-city-gazette.co.za

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stuck in slow moving traffic. • Do not have handbags, briefcases visible in the car; lock all valuables in the boot or behind the seat. • Always remove radios, CDs or cassettes if possible • Thieves target car parks; always park your car in an attended parking lot. • Be on the lookout for suspicious looking characters. “Always be aware and alert, do not subconsciously make yourself a crime victim. Stop crime by practicing caution,” Col Swartz adds.

t a workshop held at Constitution Hill this week Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane (pictured above) revealed that a heritage site for women will be built in Tshwane to honour all the women who struggled for the rights of women during the apartheid era. Mokonyane said the site will be a centre of revival for those women who were oppressed during the apartheid era and a historical site. She added that it must have the history of women who fought against apartheid system, and youths are to learn that the struggle for the rights of women started way back. “The monument should be a place for revival, protection and refugee for

women, a heritage site,” she said. She encouraged Gauteng women to work together on behalf of other South African women to put together the kind of a monument that they would like have. Mokonyane added that the institution should recognise the past, empower the future and create opportunities for generations to come. “The institution is about the promotion of skills development, access to information and a site where women come together in their diversity,” she explained. Most women at the workshop supported the initiative and added some ideas on what they want the monument to be. Some suggested that the monument should be a place of healing for those who were affected during apartheid, and for educating

those who did not experience it. Mokonyane explained that the institution must be owned by generations to come, so that after they are gone their history will be added, thus making it a living monument. “The concept that we must bring up must show that it is a relay, it must depict the history, activities, provide knowledge, develop consciousness and make a difference for generations to come,” she added. The MMC for Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Clr Faith Kgaditse said the struggle for women must be taught in schools, so that the youth understand where they are coming from. The women’s heritage site will be at the Lillian Ngoyi Square in Tshwane because of its historical background, the premier announced.

Joe Slovo Rd thugs arrested Akhona Zibonti akhona@inner-city-gazette.co.za

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ast week Hillbrow police arrested two men who allegedly mugged a journalist in Joe Slovo Road, Berea. The journo, Yusuf Omar of The Star newspaper was robbed in a smash-and-grab incident in Berea last Saturday. That was a time when hundreds of people were flocking to watch the rugby match between the Springboks and England. Omar said he had parked his car in Joe Slovo Road near the corner of Abel Road. “Two smiling men crossed the road in front

of the car, and suddenly one of them smashed the driver’s side window. One of them held my throat as the other shouted that he wanted my phone and money, and searched my pockets.” Moments later the men ran into the darkness in separate directions, chased by two police officers, Cst Sibusiso Mhlungu and Cst Julius Nyandeni, while Cst Acceptance Nyakale asked if he was okay. A short while later the police returned with the suspects and two cellphones that had been recovered. The men have appeared at the Hillbrow Magistrate court on a charge of robbery.

Officers Cst Mhlungu, Cst Nyandeni and Cst Nyakale PIC : INNER-CITY PRESS AGENCY


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NEWS

Show love for Madiba World urged to sing for Nelson Mandela on his birthday in July Persistance Nkomo persie.nkomo@inner-city-gazette.co.za

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he world community has been called to sing the Happy Birthday song for ex-president Nelson Mandela at 8am on 18 July, his 94th birthday; and also donate 67 minutes to community service. Speaking during the recent launch of the campaign, Yusuf Abramjee of Lead SA said everyone has their own memories of how Madiba touched their lives. “Madiba allows us to dream, makes

us believe in possibilities and unites us. Last year, Lead SA, the Department of Basic Education and Nelson Mandela Foundation united the voices of South Africa to sing for Madiba, and this year we want to make it big,” Abramjee said. He added that they appeal to people to also show how much they love Madiba by singing the Happy Birthday song to him. “The song was recorded at the Nelson Mandela Square in Joburg on 29 May and can be downloaded from YouTube,” Abramjee added.

Lucille Davie

Housing group partners with French agency Over a thousand housing units will be provided for the lower income market in the inner city

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he Affordable Housing Company (Afhco) and the Agence Française de Developpement (AFD) have signed an agreement last to develop housing specifically for the lower income market in the inner city. “This is a major breakthrough for the city,” said Afhco chief executive Renney Plit (pictured right). AFD is providing a R150 million loan, with Afhco contributing R23million to the project. With this, 1 300 units for 3 000 residents will

The CEO of Primedia Broadcasting, Terry Volkwyn said Madiba’s legacy is that of active citizenship. She urged citizens to partake in the Nelson Mandela Day to make a difference. “Despite the challenges that South Africa faces, its citizens are a vibrant nation that shows that the spirit of ubuntu is alive. There is no better tribute for Madiba than developing our country into an active civil society that selflessly rolls up its sleeves to make a difference for all its inhabitants,” Volkwyn said.

be provided by 2014, through the conversion of some five buildings. The housing will be in the form of units with kitchens, stoves, telephones, DSTV aerials, 24-hour security, and shared ablution facilities. Plit says that AFD approached him just over a year ago. The French ambassador, Jacques Lapouge, said: “France has long experience in social housing of all types – more than 70 years. And AFD has developed wide experience, all over the world.” AFD is a public development fi-

nance institution, a development aid body of the French government, with offices in 50 countries. The first building Afhco will tackle is Chrysler House or Atkinson House at the southern end of Eloff Street. It takes up an entire block between Eloff and Von Brandis streets. Afhco will create 500 units at Chrysler House, which has stood empty. Other buildings to be developed include Platinum Place in New Doornfontein, Connaught Mansions in Bree Street and Rodi Bose near Nugget Street. joburg.org.za

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LEADER

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Shocking rape stats It is estimated that women in South Africa have a higher chance of being raped than learn how to read. This is shocking. Is it because men around the country are ruthless or women make themselves vulnerable for rape? What of infant rape? What is the government doing about this? Sometimes I ask myself questions when I read about cases of infant abuse. Why would someone rape an eight month old baby? Do these myths that HIV can be cured by having sex with a virgin still exist? It is also shocking to note that most of the children are raped by family members who are supposed to be protecting them. Who then will these children trust if they cannot trust their own family members? Who does not know that the cure for HIV is not yet discovered, yet people continue to believe these “prophets” lying to them. Merylin Dube Johannesburg

COMMENT Recently we published an article which warned pedestrians in the Rea Vaya bus lanes in Twist and Noord streets. That was followed up by a traffic safety awareness campaign in that area by City of Johannesburg and Rea Vaya bus officials. In that event the officials warned pedestrians about the dangers of jaywalking in that area of heavy traffic. The effort was fruitful in that upon observing the area for the next few weeks we realised that many people were alert in the area. For some time following the event there were no accidents involving the bus or the taxis in that area. Nevertheless, a few months down the line we notice that the danger may revisit the area once more because most pedestrians seem to have forgotten the warnings that were given to then regarding traffic safety in the area. The article we published earlier detailed that a woman sustained serious injury when she was knocked down by the Rea Vaya bus in Noord Street. The area around Twist and Noord streets has heavy motor and pedestrian traffic. Many people often try to cross the street where the robots are confusing, in that they turn green for the bus, and some pedestrians think the green is meant for them. I some cases they meet the bus bearing down on them and have to run for their lives. The other dangerous place is the Bok Street intersection. There, people often cross Twist Street at the robots safely, but forget to watch out for the bus coming along the lane. In that area some pedestrians walk in the Rea Vaya lane. The Noord Street section of the lane is even more complicated and dangerous, with motor vehicles crossing the lane, and another Rea Vaya bus coming from the opposite direction.

Distribution – 40 000 copies free door to door delivery weekly to all households and businesses in the Joburg inner-city. Inner-City Gazette welcomes editorial contributions from readers. They may raise new issues or respond to articles published in the paper. Contributions may be sent to the editor’s address below. Published by Inner-City Gazette 149 Pritchard Street, Johannesburg 2000 Tel : 011 023 - 7588 011 024 - 8210 011 402 - 1977 Fax : 086 609 8601 Email : info@inner-city-gazette.co.za Website : www.inner-city-gazette.co.za Printed by Paarlcoldset(Pty)Ltd

All rights and reproduction of articles, images and other items published in this publication are reserved in terms of Section 12(7) of the Copyright Act 96 (1978) and its amendments thereof.

Road to Mangaung: ANC’s faction matrix To contest leadership, prospective ANC leaders need strong backers and strategic lobbying in party structures, Ranjeni Munusamy writes.

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he journey to Mangaung has sparked indistinguishable factions campaigning more on the basis of vested interest than support for candidates, which spells trouble for Jacob Zuma, Kgalema Motlanthe and Tokyo Sexwale (pictured). The first open leadership challenge in the ANC after 1990 was between former president Thabo Mbeki and former SACP general secretary Chris Hani. At the 1991 national conference in Durban, the two leaders were both up for position of deputy president. To prevent further divisiveness, party elders such as Oliver Tambo and Nelson Mandela convinced Mbeki and Hani to stand down and, as a compromise, Walter Sisulu was elected. Later, as a result of a clash of wills between Mbeki and former ANC secretary- general Cyril Ramaphosa, factions sprung up around the two powerful men. Mbeki’s faction succeeded in convincing Mandela to appoint their man as his deputy. After Mbeki’s election as ANC president in 1997, he took firm hold of the party. The only place where opposition could sprout was in the alliance. After Zwelinzima Vavi and Blade Nzimande were elected general secretaries of Cosatu and the SACP respectively, an anti-Mbeki coalition began to take shape. At the height of his presidency, Mbeki initiated a surprise manoeuvre to oust the Left from the alliance. In a stinging speech at the ANC’s policy conference in September 2002, he all but told the SACP and Cosatu to get out of the alliance. The turning point came when it was revealed that then deputy president Jacob Zuma was under investigation by the National Prosecuting Authority relating to corruption in the arms deal. Suspicion slowly grew in the ANC and the alliance that Mbeki had a hand in Zuma’s troubles but these remained under the radar for years. The trigger for the fiercest postliberation factional battle was when

Mbeki fired Zuma and the Left found the traction it needed to stage a crusade against Mbeki. With Zuma’s trials and victim status forming an ideal campaign platform, a rag-tag army consisting of leaders from Cosatu, the SACP, the ANC Youth League and KwaZulu-Natal championed the operation to have Mbeki ousted. Shortly after Mbeki’s recall from office, Zuma’s camp fragmented. Disputes arose over who should be appointed caretaker president as Nzimande and others opposed Kgalema Motlanthe taking the position. After Zuma became president, the ANC Youth League under Julius Malema became a force unto itself, becoming critical of the president. Rumours began circulating that the ANC leader in KwaZulu-Natal, Zweli Mkhize, one of Zuma’s most trusted advocates, was “close” to Sexwale, the housing minister with perennially open presidential ambitions. This led to the production of Richard Mdluli’s dubious crime intelligence report alleging that some of Zuma’s closest backers were plotting to have Sexwale replace him. As Zuma’s leadership weaknesses became apparent, fewer people came to his defence. Zuma’s biggest advantage at present is the lack of a clear challenger for the presidency. With the ANC’s centenary commemorations under way,

he is also able to campaign across the country under the guise of celebrating the 100 years of party’s history. So far, the only clear thorn in his side is the ANC Youth League, which has openly declared that he should be voted out at Mangaung. Malema’s expulsion from the party resulted in last week’s open warfare in the NEC, ostensibly between people who were all in the Zuma camp five years ago. Power brokers in Limpopo, who were firmly behind Zuma in 2007, are at the forefront to have him removed due to their close relationship with Malema and government’s squeeze on the provincial government’s resources. Cosatu has held back on naming preferred candidates for leadership in the ANC due to the disappointing outcome of their last gamble. The trade union federation is also divided around support for Zuma and intensive discussions are under way with influential leaders in affiliate unions to lobby for the various candidates. The SACP congress to be held next month is expected to endorse Zuma’s leadership although it has lost its significant lobbying power in the tripartite alliance. KwaZulu-Natal, with the biggest representation at the Mangaung conference, is Zuma’s biggest trump card - although discontent over Zuma’s firing of Bheki Cele could

Inner-City Gazette subscribes to the South African Press Code that prescribes news that is truthful, accurate, fair and balanced. If we do not live up to the code please contact the press ombudsman on 011 484-3612 or 011 484 - 3618 or ombudsman@presscouncil.org.za .

If you have news stories or tips please contact Akhona on 073 688 8496

breed pockets of opposition. Motlanthe still remains the reluctant candidate and therefore his backers are having an uphill climb in trying to lobby ANC structures when there is still a real chance he will not contest the presidency. His most vocal backers are the ANC Youth League, but no provinces have yet come out in clear support of his candidacy. However, Gauteng has emerged as a powerful lobby, which could throw its support behind either Motlanthe or Sexwale. Sexwale’s failed 2007 attempt and inclination to be too bombastic on the campaign trail make his supporters nervous. His Anything But Zuma (ABZ) is trying to coalesce those disgruntled with Zuma’s leadership under a single banner. The brains behind this campaign hope that once a significant faction takes shape, a compromise candidate – they hope it will be Sexwale – will be put forward to challenge Zuma. The main defect with this strategy is that it is built around negative campaigning, which would not sit easily with hard-core ANC supporters. Until a candidate can be put up to be presented as a leader who can rescue the ANC from its leadership and factional battles, and the burden of corruption, it’s still Zuma’s race to lose. However, with the ANC as fragmented as it is now, the victor at Mangaung is destined to inherit a more divided ANC than is evident now. The only way to prevent an almighty showdown in December would be to negotiate a compromise beforehand, similar to what the elders did in 1991. Unfortunately there aren’t any respected elders left who could hold sway with the contenders or a powerful enough faction in the party to force such a deal. But the history of the ANC has never been predictable and the next six months could still yield a surprise outcome in Mangaung. Daily Maverick


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Looking forward to Fathers’ Day While some people look forward to a Fathers Day some wish the day would pass by quickly. Their fathers have either died or left them behind. This year will be different for the children in Malvern, Kensington, and surrounding areas. The daughters of Zion Ministries, a non-profit organisation is organising an event on 23 June 2012 for the children who are not living with their fathers. “The aim of this event is to give

these children a chance to share and experience fellowship with fathers,” said Xolisa Tetana, the chairperson of the organisation which was established in 2006. The public is invited to the event, which starts 11am at the Bethel Pentecostal Church. The church is situated at 31 Mars Street Malvern. For further account details and further information contact Tetana on 011 042-8548 or e-mail dministries@gmail.com

NEWS

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Some of the learners who were involved in the tour to Freedom Park.

Learners tour historical sites Persistance Nkomo persie.nkomo@inner-city-gazette.co.za

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he Metropolitan College of Joburg recently embarked on an education tour to the Freedom Park as a way of paying tribute to those who fought for the freedom of the country. The school’s principal, Phakamile Khumalo said they were the ambassadors of Joburg schools to the site. “We were the first school from Joburg this year to visit the Free-

dom Park, and because of that schools which visited later were allowed at discount fees. This tour is in line with the move for the month of June, that our youths get to know where the country is coming from, and where it is going,” he says. He added that 61 learners visited the site in the company of four educators and got to know about the history of South Africa from precolonial times up to this date. “The learners paid tribute to the heroes who fought for freedom by vis-

If you have news stories or tips please contact Persie on 074 064 0210

iting the Freedom Park, and learnt a lot about the country’s history. The visit to the site was to acknowledge those who contributed to the freedom of the country and our learners were inspired to take action on the future,” added Khumalo. The learners explored places like the Union Buildings and Pretoria Zoo among others. Khumalo added that the tour was educative and the learners were inspired by the works of the striggle heroes to make a difference in the country.


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FOCUS ON AFRICA

ICC hires African prosecutor Banjul - The International Criminal Court (ICC) has sworn in former Gambian justice minister and lawyer Fatou Bensouda as its chief prosecutor. She replaces Argentinian Luis Moreno-Ocampo, whose nine-year term ends this month. Bensouda served as Moreno-Ocampo’s deputy. The court currently has investigations in DR Congo, the CAR, Uganda, Kenya, Sudan, Ivory Coast and Libya. Critics have said the court targets Africa and ignores abuses in nations like Afghanistan and Iraq. Bensouda has worked as adviser to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, which is trying key figures in the 1994 genocide. She takes the helm of the world’s first permanent court to try those accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, investigating 15 cases in seven countries, all of them African. The ICC has issued 20 arrest warrants. The wanted include Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir and Ugandan LRA leader Joseph Kony. Those arrested include Ivorian ex-leader Laurent Gbagbo, who faces charges relating to the death of 3 000 people after the 2010 polls.

NEWS Life jail for ‘Queen killer’

Kigali - The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda has jailed ex-military officer Captain Ildephonse Nizeyimana for life. He was convicted of killing thousands of Tutsi, including Queen Rosalie Gicanda, the widow of King Mutara Rudahigwa III. Nizeyimana was Ildephonse Nizeyimana found guilty of other charges, including extermination and murder as crimes against humanity. The chamber, under Presiding Judge Lee Muthoga found Capt Nizeyimana guilty of killing members of the Ruhutinyanya family, the attack on Cyahinda Parish, the killing of Rosalie Gicanda and others taken from her home, and the killing of Pierre Claver Karenzi at the Hotel Faucon roadblock. He was also found guilty of genocide for ordering the killings of Remy Rwekaza and Beata Uwambaye at the Gikongoro and Kigali roads junction roadblock as well as the serious bodily harm caused to Witness ZAV at the same barrier. Captain Nizeyimana, commonly referred to as the “Queen Killer”, was arrested in 2009 in Uganda through joint efforts of Interpol and the Ugandan police who tracked him from the DR Congo.

Fatou Bensouda

Govt closes Ivorian border Monrovia - Following the recent murder of 17 people who included seven UN peacekeepers by unidentified gunmen inside Ivory Coast, Liberia has closed the border and deployed troops in the frontier. Liberia has also suspended all alluvia mining activities and trade along its border with Ivory Coast. Liberian Information Minister Lewis Brown said the closure and troop deployment is intended to protect the area, and the soldiers have instructions to use every means to safeguard lives and property. In a joint press conference Foreign Minister Augustine Ngafuan; Defence Minister Brownell Samukai and Information Minister Lewis Brown announced the extradition of Ivorian mercenaries held, and surveillance of Ivorian refugee camps. Seven Nigerien soldiers serving the UN Operations in Cote d’Ivoire (UNOCI) were killed in the Ivorian town of Tie by mercenaries suspected of coming from the Liberian side of the border. The Liberian ministers said they could not establish the identities of the mercenaries. They condemned the attack, describing it as baseless and inhumane.

More US bases in Africa Thomas Lubanga

Thirty years jail for warlord Kinshasa - International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutors suggest warlord Thomas Lubanga should be jailed for 30 years. Lubanga was convicted of abducting boys and girls under the age of 15 and forcing them to fight in a war that killed 60 000 people in eastern DRC. “Children were trained to kill and rape. They were launched into battle zones

instructed to kill everyone,” ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo said. The ICC convicted Lubanga in March. The prosecutor said he would recommend a reduced sentence of 20 years if Lubanga showed remorse. “He has to promote peace, advocate for measures to unify and heal injured communities, promote reconciliation and the reinte-

HILLBROW POLICE ARRESTS 17 - 21 JUNE 2012 Assault common 22, assault common 22, robbery common 11, possession of drugs 6, possession of dagga 3, dealing in dagga 7, possession of suspected stolen property 3, theft 9, fraud 3, Malicious injury to property 4, possession of dangerous weapon 1, drunk and driving 10, reckless and negligent

driving 4, driving without license 7, intimidation 3, shoplifting 7, interference 3, car jacking 1, trespassing 1, attempted murder and robbery 1. Undocumented persons 33. Confiscation, 4 cellphones, I toygun, 1 camera, 2 projectors, 1 monitor, 10 knives, cocaine, dagga and 200 fake DVDs.

COMMUNITY

EVENTS

Friday 22 June : Youth Desk cleaning campaign starting at 10am. For further details contact Captain N Magowa on cellphone 082 532 2682. Friday 22 June : Soccer tournament at Barnato High School grounds. The event will host eight soccer teams and four netball teams. For more information contact Puleng (Hillbrow Youth Desk) on 078 391 8945 or Captain N Magowa on 082 532 2682. Saturday 30 June : Crime Awareness campaign march starting from the Hillbrow SAPS basement at 9am. Fr further details contact Captain N Magowa on 082 532 2682.

FOR DETAILS CALL 011 023 - 7588

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gration of the child soldiers,” he said. Last month the Special Court for Sierra Leone, another war crimes court in The Hague, jailed ex-Liberian leader Charles Taylor for aiding Sierra Leone rebels.

Djibril Bassole

Ouagadougou -The US military is expanding a secret network of air bases across Africa to spy on alQaeda. The Washington Post newspaper says the surveillance is by small planes with state-of-the-art sensors that fly thousands of kilometres between air bases and landing strips across the continent. This underscores the expansion of US forces operations in recent years and the militarisation of intelligence during the war on al-Qaeda. Bases in Burkina Faso and Mauritania are used to spy on al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, while those in Uganda in hunting for the LRA of Joseph Kony. The paper said there were plans to open another base in South Sudan. US aircraft operating out of Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and the Seychelles spy on Somalia’s Qaeda-inspired Al-Shabab and have attacked wanted fighters. The paper said one secret base was in a secluded hanger in Ouagadougou. Foreign Minister Djibril Bassole would not comment about US operations. “We need to protect our borders. Once al-Qaeda infiltrate your country, it’s very difficult to get them out,” he said.


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COMMUNITY

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City resolves billing queries Rudo Mungoshi

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his week the City of Johannesburg’s revenue and customer management department invited 900 customers to attend its Key and Corporate Accounts Open Day at Thuso House in Braamfontein. The department undertook to address queries brought forward by its corporate clients around the city. On hand to assist the customers with their queries were officials designated to services such as rates and taxes; valuations; geo-informatics and land information systems as well as representatives from City Power and Johannesburg Water. Meter readers who were also part of the event were despatched to investigate faulty meters as they were being reported by the customers. Stan Yankelson, a utilities manager at Afcho Holdings, a property development company, was pleasantly surprised by the department’s efficiency in handling his case, and thanked the municipal officials for their intervention. “The response was very professional and I am confident that they will attend to my problems immediately,” he said. “I handed in a memorandum of grievances, which was well received and will assist them in dealing with the queries.” However, he said the current system of logging queries at the customer centre can be improved. “Some of the queries are complicated and the likelihood of having them sorted out is limited,” he said.

Another representative of a property company, Daphnie Selolo from Realty Management Services, said she was sceptical about the exercise in the beginning, but praised the department for the initiative. “I thank the City for coming up with such a wonderful idea. It has saved us from unnecessary stress,” she said. “I am very impressed, they should do this more often.” Some of the issues raised by the customers included grossly inflated estimates, meters not being read on a regular basis and bills being sent to the wrong businesses. Stanley Maphologela, spokesperson of the department, said the majority of the queries had been attended to. “Our hope is to firstly resolve their queries, and secondly foster a direct relationship with them,” he said. He added that the department might reconsider extending the duration of the operation if the exercise is successful. “We value all our customers, and businesses operating in Johannesburg are a vital segment for revenue collection. The payments we receive from them will go a long way in ensuring that the city is able to deliver services.” The open day is an effort to resolve its billing crisis, which has received plenty of negative reporting in the media. Some residents across Johannesburg have been receiving inflated water and electricity bills, following the introduction of a new billing system. joburg.org.za

Dr Brenda Flanagan receives a gift from the Assistant Director of the Library Tsakane Shuburi. PIC: INNER-CITY PRESS AGENCY

US scholar urges SA writers Akhona Zibonti akhona@inner-city-gazette.co.za Dr Brenda Flanagan, an internationally acclaimed US scholar and poet had wise words for the Young Writers Forum and aspiring writers who had gathered at the City Library on Tuesday, to listen to her presentation as part of her visit to South Africa, organised by the City’s library, information services unit and the US Consulate-General. “Let your conscious be your guide as writers. It is up to the writers here to reflect what is happening in this country. As a writer you have a responsibility,” said Dr Flanagan, professor of English at the University of Michigan (US) were she teaches creative writing, Caribbean

and African-American literatures as well as literary analysis. Professor Flanagan has won numerous awards for her fiction and drama in the US and serves frequently as a cultural ambassador for the US Department of State, with recent visits to Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Kuwait, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Chad, Panama and India. Her roots can be traced in Trinidad and later adopted United States as her permanent home. “She confidently shared her story of how difficult it was going to the US without her family and experiencing racism for the first time. During her college days, she was one of the students who used to put pressure on big corporate by protesting, asking them to

disinvest in South Africa during the apartheid days. A strong believer, a student of Malcolm X, Shirley Chisholm, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr and many others” she said Fusing words with songs and drama on stage, she creates a unique and beautiful poetry which engages and captures her audience throughout. Plan Lebjane, 25, is one of the young writers who attended the presentation by Dr Flanagan. He said he was impressed by the presentation. “What impressed me is that she uses songs and words in her poetry,” he said. She has achieved everything she had ever dreamt of in her life. “Everything I’ve ever wanted, dreamt of happened. God made it happen,” Dr Flanagan said.


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THE ARTS

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SA dancer joins world dance group Incredible art form of ballroom dance combined with rock and roll Arts Correspondent

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outh African champion dancer Keoikantse Motsepe has joined Burn The Floor as a fully-fledged member of this international dance sensation. Motsepe’s’s dance teacher took him to see Burn The Floor last year. At first he was a bit resistant to see the show, but after a few seconds, it was one of the best dance shows he had ever seen. Says Motsepe: “I was blown away to be honest, I can't describe the feeling.” He managed to contact the Company Manager, Peta Roby, auditioned, and has been touring with the company since January 2012. Motsepe started dancing aged five, after his best friend suggested they try it out for some fun. Keo completed his formal dance training in Latin American, Ballroom and Contemporary at Corenergy Dance Centre, Craighall Park, Johannesburg, with Rafick Hoosain and Lorcia Cooper. He has represented South Africa internationally since 2003 in all major

Latin Dance Championships, and was the South African representative at the World Latin Championships in New York 2010. According to the producers, “Motsepe’s work ethic and commitment to his performance is unquestionable.” Burn The Floor is the show that revolutionised the image of dance, which then launched the many reality dance shows, So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing With The Stars and Superstars of Dance. The production was originally designed as a special performance in 1997 at Sir Elton John’s 50th birthday celebration. At the height of the festivities, a group of 16 young dancers brought the house down with a ten-minute dance cabaret. After seeing this performance, legendary Australian theatre producer Harley Medcalf had the spark of an idea to build a full stage show around what he had just seen. The show has toured 30 countries and over 160 cities worldwide. The current company boasts performers from 10

The Burn the Floor dance ensemble in action.

countries with more than 100 Championship Dance titles between them. These include winners and finalists from So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing With The Stars and Superstars Of Dance. While the production has no spoken dialogue, it does tell a story, and it brings a whole new meaning to ballroom dancing. “This ain’t your grandma’s ballroom,” says Harley Medcalf, the show’s creator. “Ballroom dancing has been around for years, but Burn The Floor, the theatrical ballroom dance show, is anything but old school. Burn The Floor labels itself as ‘Ballroom Reinvented’. “Filled from start to finish with spellbinding numbers in ballroom dance styles ranging from the Waltz, Cha-Cha, Samba, Salsa, Rumba, Foxtrot, Quickstep, Mambo, Tango, Swing, Jive, Lindy Hop, Viennese Waltz, and Paso Doble, Burn The Floor is “like ballroom dancing super charged. It’s the incredible art form of ballroom dance combined with rock and roll,” adds Medcalf.

PIC : JOAN MARCUS-FINALI

Burn the Floor’s energetic routine.

YEOVILLE CPF SECTOR MEETINGS

This exotic tale of love and adventure brims with pirates, pashas, harems and shipwrecks Nicolas Fonseca and Andrea Harvey in Le-Corsaire

Dazzling classics Arts Correspondent

W

ith a line-up of South African and visiting ballet stars, a cast of 100, and magnificent sets and costumes, SA ballet begins a new chapter next month when the country’s merging companies, Mzansi Productions and The South African Ballet Theatre (SABT), present Le Corsaire at the Joburg Theatre from 19 to 29 July. Le Corsaire will be the first production under the banner of the new company, the name of which is still to be announced, and marks the culmination of the merger process between Mzansi Productions and

SABT that began in 2011. To celebrate this event, the company presents the first ever SA performances of Le Corsaire, one of the great 19th century ballet classics. A treasure trove of dazzling classical showpieces, this exotic tale of love and adventure brims with pirates, pashas, harems and shipwrecks and provides a rich setting for the leading dancers, a cascade of soloist roles and massed corps de ballet sequences. In true 19th century tradition, the story is one of love besieged but ultimately triumphant, set to a sparkling, melody-rich score and glowing with classical ballet at its most irresistible. The first SA production

of Le Corsaire is being staged by distinguished SA ballerina, ballet mistress and coach, Angela Malan. She says South African dancers and audiences still have to experience the glories of many ballet classics that are virtually unknown here. “Le Corsaire is one of them and staging the ballet is a career highlight for me, the opportunity to bring to life a ballet masterpiece never seen in South Africa. I hope to give South Africa a Le Corsaire that will be unique while remaining respectful of the ballet’s rich traditions. I know audiences will be dazzled by the classical jewels in Le Corsaire,” Malan explains. artlink.co.za

This is to get the community to discuss issues with the police. The meeting programme is as follows: Sector 1: 23 June – Elijah Barayi Centre, Saunders Street Sector 2 : 26 June - St Aidans Anglican Church, 59 Regent Street The YCPF executives, station commander and officer of the MEC, have decided the vacant posi-

tions in the CPF. There are still six active members, including chairperson who was elected in 2009, the date of the election is to be announced. The executive, a representative from the MEC office and station commander will meet with the 3 sector forums before the AGM, to explain election procedures. For more call sector managers: Capt Mtshali on 082 694 6926 Cst Cebekhulu on 073 224 1580


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INNER-CITY GAZETTE

THE ARTS

21 - 28 JUNE 2012

Velephi Khumalo

A scene in an earlier version of Boesman and Lena.

Charly Azade, Elton Landrew and Quanita Adams in the current cast.

Play has stood the test of time An awesome performance that wrenches at your heart Jennifer de Klerk

T

he audience at the Old Mutual Theatre on the Square was dead-still. We were caught, mesmerised by the drama, the exposure to people and their pain. The stage is bare, littered only by the pitiful possessions carried in, but it is easy to see the dark sky overhead, the bare Swartkops mudflats, the occasional spindly bush, and to feel the chill bite of the wind. Stripped to nothing, all these two have are themselves and that is on the edge. “Lena, my name is Lena, say it,” she begs. An old, tattered

coloured woman, driven out into the dark, she walks the paths, the same old paths, never knowing where she is going, or where she has come from. Quanita Adams plays Lena in Boesman and Lena, and it is an awesome performance that wrenches at your heart. She expresses the pathos, the loneliness and the pain, but also the spirit that dares to laugh, even to sing. A pathetic pair of high-heeled shoes captures the aspirations, the yearning for something, anything beyond what life has given her, the bruises, the brown bitterness. “We are garbage,” yells the morose

Sharmini Brookes

Intense theatre at the Barney Simon

The play, The Brothers Size is a good story with plenty of local colour that speaks to a universal audience. This play is the second in a trilogy by Tarell Alvin McCraney called the Brother/ Sister plays. The performance of the Brothers Size in the Barney Simon Theatre was much more impressive. A minimalist stage set by Jessica Ford and lighting by Mannie Manim captured the atmosphere of the

and menacing Boesman, a fist raised against the world. It’s a powerfully understated and complementary performance by Elton Landrew, a black shadow to Lena’s fireworks. All they have is each other and they rip each other apart. Into this emotional wasteland comes Outa, played with conviction by Charly Azade. In the original production I saw many years ago, he was simply a black man. Here director James Ngcobo has made him more universal, a foreigner speaking an unknown language. The mudflats of Swartkops could be the mudflats of anywhere in Africa.

bayou without being intrusive and with brilliant acting by Joshua Elijah as Ogun, Rodrick Covington as Oshoosi and Sam Encarnacion as Elegba. The play is about the relationship of brothers; Ogun, the elder one who owns and runs a garage mechanic shop and his younger brother, Oshoosi, who has recently returned from prison and depends on his brother for support. A friend, Elegba, tempts Osi away from honest labour with a girl-magnet car and the attractions of local nightlife.

All they have to share is their pain and at times their pain is overwhelming. It’s a powerful play and always will be. This is not confined to the apartheid days, although it stems from them. Boesman and Lena are the forgotten, discarded people on the fringe of too many of our societies. Yet they are people, nuanced desperate, indomitable – characters that will come alive and be recognised in any day and in any time. This remarkable play by Athol Fugard has stood the test of time. I still remember moments from that production I saw so many years ago.

A mythological narrative based on Yoruba folklore overlays the basic narrative so that Ogun as the god of iron, war and labour symbolises a strong if unbending will; Osi, as the Orisha or god of the forest, symbolises the wanderer and a hunter and patron of justice while Elegba, standing between the worlds of the human and divine as the owner of roads and doors, symbolises the contradictory tempting devil. The Brothers Size production is being presented at the Market Theatre until July 1.

Engaging musical at the Market An authentic 1950s flair and personality to the show Take a trip I back to the fabulous 1950s. This electrifying musical is ready to take theatre fans back to the shebeens of the 1950s. Following sold-out performances at the Victory Theatre in Joburg last year, Kwela Bafana- A Night in a 50s Shebeen will once again take the city by storm. It started at the Market Theatre in Newtown last week and will continue until 24 June. Kwela Bafana is an engaging musical which brings to life the unforgettable sights and sounds of South Africa during a decade known for producing a distinctive flavour in song and dance. It is directed by renowned Sibikwa Art Centre founders Phyllis Klotz and Smal Ndaba, with musical direction by the multi-talented Themba Mkhize. It features songs from the classic King Kong, Victor Ndlazilwane of the Woodywood Peckers and Dambuza Mdledle of the Manhattan Brothers. Boy Ngwenya, an original member of the Woodywood Peckers and the famous King Kong cast, brings an authentic 1950s flair and personality to the show. Velephi Khumalo has in previous productions of Kwela Bafana become one of the show’s biggest attractions with her impressive vocals.


21 - 28 JUNE 2012

INNER-CITY GAZETTE

RELIGION

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21 - 28 JUNE 2012

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I NNER-CITY GAZETTE

SPORT

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Police runner wins medals Her determination, drive and pride in her work shows in the medals in her office Akhona Zibonti akhona@inner-city-gazette.co.za

Winner...Victoria Ngobese

PIC : INNER-CITY PRESS AGENCY

Veteran runner Victoria Ngobese of Hillbrow SAPS won a bronze medal in the recent Comrades Marathon. Ngobese, who is the head of data capturing at the Hillbrow police station also won five medals in the SAPS Athletics championships tournament that was held in the Western Cape between 11 and 14 June this year. Ngobese won first place in the 100m, 400m, 200m, 800m and cross country races. She came second in the four by

one relay in the Gauteng region, which won her a silver medal. “I felt great when I won the medals, even if I don’t win I still feel good,” says Ngobese. Ngobese has been an athlete for over 40 years and is still going strong. Her determination, drive and pride in her work shows in the medals in her office. “The love for sport does not stop just because you grow older or are too old to compete. My mission is to groom youngsters to perform even better than me,” she says.

The interior of the Bronx Gym

PIC : INNER-CITY PRESS AGENCY

New gym for Hillbrow Akhona Zibonti akhona@inner-city-gazette.co.za

T

he Bronx Gym in Pretoria Street, Hillbrow, opened five weeks ago and already boasts 1 500 members. The owner of the gym, Anthony Agrella says it is the only payas-you-use gym in the area, with equipment amounting to almost R4 million “It has a children’s section which consists of a jungle gym and tables. A supervisor for the children ensures the place is safe,”

Agrella says. There is a running track 80 metres long. Agrella adds that there is also a boxing room and that is the only gym which has one for professional boxers. The gym also incorporates a squash court, spinning classes, aerobics classes, shower and sonar. “This is the best value for money in the gym world. We need only your name and fee, and there is no contract,” he said. The Bronx Gym has created16 jobs for people in the Hillbrow neighbourhood, Agrella adds.

Youths attend Youth Day squash event Hundreds of youths from various communities attend day of fun and outdoor activities Sports Correspondent

E

very year on 16 June CGS Development runs a Squash Youth Day. This year about 350 children met at the Wits University Main Campus for a fun-filled day of out-door activities, dance competitions and educational activities. Five Social service organizations from across the country were invited to disseminate information on issues affecting youth. The Youth Day was supported by the Rackets For Africa, an initiative supported by the World Squash Federation and the African Squash Federation (SFA) that promote the game, tours, championships and grass-root development. CGS Development has faced challenges of acquiring equipment sufficient for the youths, but this was reversed through an initiative by Riley Waterous; a squash-

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playing student from Calgary. Dikana Mthombeni, the Head Coach of CGS Development said the equipment came at the right time, when nine CGS Development players had qualified for the Inter-Provincials and would represent their Central Province. It was all smiles for individuals and teams who performed well in the CGS Development projects since the beginning of 2012 as they were awarded with T-shirts, certificates and medals. Twelve teachers and five CGS Development Coaches who participated in the Level 1 course in May were awarded with their certificates on the day. This was a great achievement which CGS Development continuously engages in to ensure that it produces relevant, skilled and qualified coaches to improve kids’ playing standards. For more information call 011 886 1740.

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Some of the children who attended the squash event at the Wits Main Campus.

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