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TAXI TIMES

MPUMALANGA

WEEK 30 26 JULY 2019 WWW.TAXITIMES.NET

A PUBLICATION BY:

Homeless Nelspruit man found dead

A group of homeless people in Mbombela had the search for their friend turn to tragedy after his body was discovered in the brush opposite the Town Lodge on Friday. The man died in a clearing with his only earthly possessions just metres away from his body. Hi-Tech Medical Service’s Gerty Greyling was on the scene with police when the discovery was made. She said, “Before 11:00, his friends were looking for him after he had been noticeably absent. When they checked his usual sleeping spot, they found his body and informed police.” One of the policemen on the scene estimated the deceased to be in his

According to his friends, he had been ill for a few days, but we could not corroborate this claim.

forties Greyling added that the man had been dead for a few hours and that the cause of death could not be determined at that stage. “According to his friends, he had been ill for a few days, but we could not corroborate this claim. At this stage we will have to wait for the pathologists to remove the body and conduct an examination to ascertain whether the cause of death was natural or not.” At the time of going to press, Nelspruit Post was unsuccessful in determining the deceased’s identity. The Nelspruit police spokesman, Capt Zandile Gqawa was unaware of the discovery. She said, “No case was registered with the Nelspruit police.”

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ONLINE A 30-year-old mother accused of chaining her 12-year-old disabled daughter and locking her inside the house was granted R500 bail in the Bela Bela Magistrate’s Court. Limpopo police spokesman Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe however said the woman was still in custody because no one turned up to pay her bail. She was arrested after concerned

neighbours alerted police about a girl being ill-treated by her mother. Officers found the 12-year-old alone and chained to a chair in the house. She was rescued and taken to a place of safety. The mother was arrested and charged with child neglect and appeared in court on Thursday. Her case was postponed to August for further investigation.

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26 JULY 2019

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A NOTE FROM THE

EDITOR “BLACK TAX” BURDEN

There is a responsibility of pulling others up when you succeed. We are still very afraid as young people to speak up because we think it is selfish. While others don’t mind paying black tax, the burden comes when nobody else is willing to take over the responsibility Parents should stop comparing their children’s success with others, just because their neighbour’s son manages to send money home and extend the house, doesn’t mean your children can also afford to do so. Black parents should be more understanding. We have our own lives to live, we have dreams that we want to achieve and if we are constantly. Young people need to adopt a saving culture. We are the

A LETTER TO THE

generation that can take action in stopping this cycle by starting to save. We also need to learn to say ‘no’ and develop a habit of planning our finances to combat the cycle of poverty.

Taxi drivers’ reckless driving has claimed numerous victims, not to mention innocent people who have been caught in the crossfire during violence in the industry. The taxi industry is the only one I know of that treats clients like trash. Their actions lead to the deaths of pedestrians, other motorists and

Teaching under the trees

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Ins and outs of starting a taxi business The taxi industry in South Africa has been given a bad reputation over the last few years, but what very few realise is that it’s a very lucrative business opportunity for taxi owners. There will always be commuters; hence there will always be a business opportunities available for taxi operators. Who to register with As with any other business, owning a fleet of taxis requires planning. Planning that involves fleet management and acquiring the necessary paperwork to operate in a certain vicinity. After the business plan and funding has been obtained, the taxi owner must register his business with the appropriate South African agencies, including the Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO), the Department of Labour and the Department of Transport. Thereafter the licensed taxi driver is free to operate and can be hired for business. What you need to get started The most important certificate for a taxi operator to have is a route license. The taxi association will upload the driver and vehicle details on a database, which will then in turn show if the route is profitable or not. If there are too many taxis on the same route, then the likelihood of the driver making a profit will be reduced. The routes are also allocated and controlled by local governments, but the taxi association’s task is to be very careful in making sure

EDITOR

themselves. They don’t follow the rules of the road. They skip red lights with impunity. If you want to observe their bad driving in all its glory, Soweto is the place. They simply disregard other road users, not forgetting they march in protest against the impounding of the wrecks they sometimes drive. It’s like people demanding to be allowed to kill others in peace. If they want to be taken seriously, they must start by respecting themselves and the passengers.

that there aren’t too many drivers running the same route. They basically make sure that the routes are viable. This will also ensure that no conflict will arise between drivers, even if it may seem like the inevitable given the stigma of South Africa’s taxi operators. Start-up capital Commonly used vehicles are Toyota or Nissan taxies. These are called the premium vehicles in the taxi industry because of their reliability. These taxies retail from about R100 000 to about R340 000, but for the overall cost that would include paying your license and taxi association fees, the total cost can amount up to R350 000 to start a taxi business. Every industry has its flaws, and every business comes with financial gains and financial losses. It’s up to the taxi operator to ensure that his business runs smoothly. Although minibus taxis are a familiar sight on South Africa’s roads, the inner workings of the business are not generally well-known. That is why before venturing bull-headedly into this industry, it’s best to do the necessary research. Speak to someone in the know Another great way to find insight into the world of taxi operators is to speak to a driver about the ins and outs of the business. You will be able to get a better feel for it and even learn a few tricks of the trade amongst the rest of the drivers. People are always willing to share if you are willing to ask.

Almost 12 years have gone by since the community of Tshiungani village was promised new classrooms for Lwathudwa Secondary School. The school was established in 2001, with four classrooms only, starting from Grade 8 to 10. In 2003, the school accepted its first Grade 11s, and the next year some Grade 12s. However, no classrooms were provided, which resulted in some classes’ being conducted under the trees. The school governing body (SGB) of the school has been submitting requests for more classrooms since then, with no success. “The department gave us four mobile classrooms in 2009 as a temporary solution to our problems. They promised that we would get classrooms in the following year. Since then, the department has been making empty promises that have not materialized until today,” said SGB chairperson Mr Nkhetheni Tshibalo. “In 2018, we communicated with the department telephonically, at which time we were given empty promises. Early February this year, we went to Polokwane where we met Ms Maswanganyi, whom we were referred to because Mr Senyatsi, the director for infrastructure, was not available.” He added that she showed them a file “which proved that our school will be built in the 2019/20 budget with 14 classrooms, an admin block, 24 toilets and nutrition centre”. Tshibalo said that they went back to Polokwane on 25 February and met Mr Senyatsi, who made the same promise that Ms Maswanganyi had made. “We requested nine mobile

classes, so that our pupils can be accommodated while they are busy building new classrooms. Unfortunately, this promise was not fulfilled. We called him to make an appointment, but he said he was not in the office on that day. But when we arrived at their offices, we met Mr Senyatsi in the parking bay, where he said he was in a hurry and referred us to Ndebele.” He added that they were then assured that they would get the classrooms in the first week of May. “He said they were modern mobile classes with air conditioning.” Tshibalo said that they agreed with the arrangement, “but when we asked about new classrooms, he said we would get them in 2020/21. He said the only thing we could get in this financial year were toilets.” Tshibalo said that they went back to Polokwane on 21 June and that they were informed that an order for the classes had been placed “and they were going to be delivered before the school re-opens. Unfortunately, we have not received these classes until today”. The school has an enrolment of 669 pupils. Tshibalo said the lack of classrooms was impacting negatively on the matric results. “Overcrowding in classrooms is making it difficult for educators to teach more effectively. Pupils cannot concentrate fully during outside classes under the trees as they are easily distracted by movements of cars and anything passing by.” He added that their concern was that the government only seemed to listen to people who resorted to destroying public property while engaging in protest marches. “As people who live in far-flung rural areas, we know the importance of the little resources we have. We are also aware the future of our children relies on education.” In his reaction to the situation at the school, the spokesperson for the Department of Education, Mr Sam Makondo, stated that: “As a department, there is no condition of any school we are not aware of. There is no infrastructure we are not aware of. We are addressing all challenges financial year after financial year.”


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Over 3K schools to close due to dwindling numbers By Sipho Mabena

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Schools haemorrhaging pupils are mainly in the rural areas of Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West and the Eastern Cape. The department of basic education is set to close thousands of primary and secondary schools throughout the country, the majority in the Eastern Cape, mainly due to the dwindling number of pupils. Provincial departments have received circulars detailing the number of schools that should either be merged or closed, a move which the department says will save money and optimise available resources. According to the department’s spokesperson, Elijah Mhlanga, more than 3,000 primary schools with fewer than 135 pupils, as well as high schools with fewer than 225 pupils, will either be closed or merged. “It is also to save money because there is no reason to keep these schools open. If there are two schools that can be merged to reach the required [teacher-pupil] ratio, then that will be done,” he said. Schools haemorrhaging pupils are mainly in the rural areas of Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West and the Eastern Cape, which leads the pack with more than

1,300 schools facing demise or merger in that province alone. By January 2017, 508 schools were either merged or closed down in the Eastern Cape, with multimillion-rand schools built as recently as 1994 left to rot and costly stationery and equipment gathering dust. There were also reports of pupils at Junction Farm School, closed in 2004 in the Cathcart farming area, complaining that their children were unable to get to their new school, 28km away, as there was no transport. The department said the main reason for the drop in the number of pupils in rural schools was because parents moved to cities, or moved their children to live with relatives in cities. Mhlanga said the process of closing down or merging schools took at least nine months, as every step had to adhere to rules and regulations. According to a circular from the Mpumalanga department of education, the school “rationalisation is intended to reduce or eliminate the number of micro schools and merge them with other schools so as to address inefficiencies in the system and improve quality of education”.

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Schoolgirls dating taxi drivers The image of a taxi driver looking cool and powerful in a taxi with the latest music appeals to young innocent girls, who fall for their sweet talk, while parents are left hurt and disappointed when they realise their “little girl” is dating an older man. Senior lecturer at the Department of Sociology Dr Rob Pattman, said young girls tend to fall for taxi drivers because they can provide for them materially. “As older and more powerful males, taxi drivers and conductors may be particularly popular among some schoolgirls because they see them every day and also because of the status they may attach to men driving and owning vehicles. Where power is associated with males, the girls may view their own status as being enhanced through developing a relationship with such men,” said Pattman. He said, however, these kinds of relationships are often problematic and exploitative and no doubt contribute to the much higher incidence of HIV and Aids among teenage girls than boys “Often it is girls, themselves who are blamed for being materialistic and entering these relationships for access to the 3 Cs - cash, cars and cellphones,” he said. A parent, who does not wish to be named, said he feels it’s the taxi drivers’ sweet talk that young girls fall for. “They charm the young girls and once they get what they want, they leave them,” he said. His two teenage daughters were impregnated by taxi drivers. He said he still felt “a lot of pain and anger towards the men”. He feels that what happened with his daughters, whether it was consensual or not, was rape as they were still young. His wife, on the other hand, expressed a different opinion. She said she did not blame anyone for what happened to her daughters. “Before I blame anyone, I blame myself.” She said she believed dysfunctional families produce unhappy children who do not turn to their parents and

fall prey to this type of situation. She said she had wanted to give her children a happy home but felt she had failed them. “It is not only one sector in our community that does this to our children. The abuse is all over, it’s in our homes, schools and everywhere.” A teenage girl, who cannot be named, said initially a driver would start by paying compliments to a young girl and the girl would eventually give in to the relationship. “Being young and foolish you start to accept the gifts he buys for you. You forget about how old he is and enjoy that fact that he says he cares for you,” she said. She said that it was mostly about the free rides and the money. She added that at first bunking school is not an option, but when “you think of the things the driver has done for you, you will bunk when they ask you to”. “Sometimes you do think about how it will hurt your family if they find out that you are dating a taxi driver, but then you realise that you have gone too far and can’t go back.” A nurse from Newlands, Lizette Conway said some of the drivers and conductors have bad attitudes and act as if they are doing the community a favour but are just causing problems. She feels there needs to be “some sort of law that monitors these guys’ behaviour” and doesn’t let them get off lightly when they put a foot wrong. Pattman believes the root of the problem lies in the assumption that males are expected to be economically and socially more powerful than their female partners.

The Ndlovu Youth Choir recently opened up about their journey on America’s Got Talent (AGT). The South African choir caught Mzansi’s attention following their stellar performance on the show that saw them receive a standing ovation. The video of their audition on the show received over five million views. In an interview with Channel 24, the

choir’s musical director, Ralf Schmitt said that the group is over the moon after they made it to the live show rounds. “We have received the most amazing messages of encouragement. One of the most beautiful ones was when someone said, ‘South Africa needs another 2010, and this is it’.”

Pastor feeds followers dog meat

“If the problem of schoolgirls having relationships with taxi drivers is to be addressed, then, we need to encourage boys and girls to develop more equal relations with each other. “The current state of affairs is not good for girls who are often exploited in relationships with older males,” concluded Pattman.

TAXI BOSS BY DAY, SINGER BY NIGHT By Aaron Dube

The Mzansi Ndlovu Youth Choir continue to make us proud

THEMBI Magubane (45) said being a taxi boss is not easy, but she has learnt to take the blows. The businesswoman from Daveyton, Ekurhuleni, owns nine taxis. She’s also a gospel singer with three albums under her belt. Thembi said she loved the taxi industry. The mother of two children said the taxi world is not always easy, but counting profits is always wonderful. “Some taximen find it hard to listen to a woman, even when I come up with a good idea,” she told Daily Sun. Thembi said there’s nothing that makes her more comfortable than

walking around the taxi ranks. “The taxi industry needs respect and unity. “It’s a good investment opportunity, even though there are challenges.” Her recording label is called Music is Life. “During the day I run taxis and at night I’m busy writing songs.” She’s working on a live DVD. It will be released in November. “It will be released at the same time as I’m on tour in the UK,” she told the People’s Paper. Her album Singakwazi has been nominated for this year’s Ingoma Awards in the category of Best Female Artist.

Pastor Veteran Peter from the Heaven on Earth Centre Ministries in Mahikeng, North West, fed his congregation meat from a dog he had slaughtered. The church shared disturbing photos of the incident on its Facebook page and captioned the post with Mark 16. Peter confirmed he gave his congregation dog meat and claimed that all who ate

received healing. However, when asked where he found the poor canine, Peter refused to answer and claimed he had to get to a sermon. However, this has been found somehow not good by those outside the ministry and there seem to be actions to be taken over this act.


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Former soccer star Marc Batchelor shot dead Former Kaizer Chiefs star Robson Muchichwa says the death of former teammate Marc Batchelor is painful for him to come to terms with. Batchelor was shot several times in his car by two assailants on a motorbike and died on the scene. Recent reports have suggested the motive for the attack may have been linked to the former footballer’s role in a drug trafficking ring. The former Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Mamelodi Sundowns and Moroka Swallows striker was sadly just 49-yearsold. Muchichwa told KickOff: “He was a great guy both on and off the field.

“My greatest memories playing with him was when we won the Rothmans Cup. That was a great memory with him at Kaizer Chiefs. “He was a born winner and he hated to lose. We would always sit down to discuss combinations and how we can score goals. “I am grateful that I contributed to his career and he also contributed to my career. “He is a legend and contributed to football in South Africa. It’s a loss. It’s painful how he died. It’s sad, but death is something that as human beings we can’t control.”

Community fighting crime using sport The ever-increasing crime at Maniini outside Thohoyandou has been blamed on the youth, most of whom are just roaming the streets with nothing to do. This, however, could soon be a thing of the past, thanks to businessman Mr Mpho Nelwamondo, who is trying to get the youth back to the playing field. The 29-year-old businessman, who owns the Thavhani Guest House at Maniini and IT and finance companies with offices in Thohoyandou and Polokwane, handed over a full kit to the fourth-placed Maniini Ravies FC, a local team campaigning in the Thulamela Football Association, at the weekend. The donation came about after a community leader, Mr Eric Radzilani, approached him for assistance. In handing over the full kit, Nelwamondo said businesspeople had a responsibility

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to help their communities, especially the youth. “As the business community, we can make a change in our communities. Crime is ravaging our communities. We can help change that by sponsoring the youth in sport, taking them from the streets and back to the playing field,” he said. He further indicated that, as a company, they were also financing youths who had business minds but did not have the finances to start up their businesses. “This is a way of ploughing back into the community and we will continue doing so as long as resources are available,” Nelwamondo said. Team manager Mulisa Ravele said he lacked words to thank their sponsor. “Youths with nothing to do face many temptations, most of the time ending up in prison. We are very excited as a team.”

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