Gauteng Hawks shows its claws + challenge of Sibiya ruling
Acting National Hawks Head Major-General Berning Ntlemeza will appeal a court ruling that overturned the suspension of Gauteng Hawks boss Major-General Shadrack Sibiya.The appeal would be filed in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Monday. Ntlemeza suspended Sibiya pending an investigation into his alleged role in the illegal rendition of Zimbabweans to that country's police in 2010. Attorney for Sibiya, Victor Nkhwashu:
The Hawks have served my office with an intention to challenge the reinstatement. This means that my client may not return to duty as yet. We want this to be heard speedily of course, especially since there's been confusion over his suspension, reinstated and then suspended again.
Spokesperson for the Hawks, Hangwani Mulaudzi:
This is just a procedure, like in any other organisation; when you believe there has been some shortcomings in procedure, you are open to appeal the decision. There are concerns around the IPID report, the Integrity Report, which we know for a fact that it never came into light - it wasn't investigated as such. There are a lot of allegations against him and it isn't a witchunt as such.
SA on the lookout for 'Terror 11'
The UN Security Council has warned South Africa to be on the lookout for 11 international terrorists who may decide to use the country as an operational base. They are said to have links to Al-Qaeda and Islamic State. A proclamation in the Government Gazette this week noted that the group consists of financiers, recruiters and logistical supporters of the terror groups. The 11 men and women are from Norway, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq. Minister of State Security, David Mahlobo:
What we know is that there is an UN Security Council system where operational information around terrorists is shared. Violent extremism around the world is looked at, including information given by the AU's arm of security. This information is shared not only with us here as South Africa, but with all countries that are members of the UN.
Mahanyele steps down from Shanduka Group
Big business news today in the Business Day is that Shanduka Group CEO Phuti Mahanyele is stepping down to start her own business after more than 10 years at the company, founded by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. Details with Phuti Mahanyele:
It was coming for some time, I had been thinking that I've been here for 10 years, I thought it would be the right opportunity, let me not wait until I turn 60. It will largely be in the same area that I've been in.
Gauteng Sopa day
Gauteng Premier David Makhura has been delivering the State of The Province Address at the Gauteng Legislature today, focusing on specific points of intervention. EWN's Govan Whittles:
It's a very long speech with a very comprehensive plan which focuses on the so-called Corridors of Freedom, which include a range of interventions including in the township economy and invigorating entrepreneurship. Makhura has also touched on issues around infrastructure, crime and the issues surrounding the SAPS and how they affect the fight against crime. He's also spoken on health, saying that the Natalspruit Hospital (in Katlehong on Gauteng's East Rand) is the model for what each hospital in Gauteng should look like.
Details murky over Maties fire
Fire-fighters have managed to contain a fire at the University of Stellenbosch. The blaze had earlier engulfed the Van Der Sterr building which houses the Accounting and Statistics departments. Large parts of the building have been severely damaged. Students have been warned to keep clear of the area.The cause of the fire has not yet been established. Stellenbosch University Communications Director, Susan Van De Merwe:
Unfortunately we do not, and we don't expect to know for a couple of weeks. Insurers will commmission a team of forensics. The roof and the third floor of the building have been affected, but it's the whole building that was ultimately workstations Post-Grad and PhD students up to 2500 students in the lecture halls at any given times. We've had to select a few models that would not have classes today and we've created a website so students can see where their classes would be today.
When will Rea Vaya return?
It’s not clear when Rea Vaya services will resume. The service has been suspended for two weeks after over 200 bus drivers went on strike on February 2nd. Piotrans said it currently has 65 drivers, which it said were not enough to resume with the bus services. However, the bus operating company said it was in a process of recruitment. The company said it was losing around R700 000 a day as a result of the strike. General Manager of Strategy and Transformation at Piotrans, Dumisani Mntambo:
We are currently working on a plan to address when we would resume operations. We are currently in the middle of recruiting and training new drivers, which takes about 3 weeks. We are likely to be back in operation by the end of March.
SANDF soldiers not back at work - 5 years later
The South African National Defence Union (Sandu) may once again go back to court to have over 600 soldiers reinstated into the the army. The soldiers have been suspended for five years after their illegal march on the Union Buildings in 2009 which turned violent causing damage to property. Last year, the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled that attempts by the SANDF to dimiss the soldiers were illegal yet the soldiers remain at home, despite that. Sandu National Secretary, Adv. Pikkie Greef:
We've had no response from the SANDF not even the courtesy of an acknowledgement of receipt. This is a constructed contempt of a court law order, since the court found their suspension of the soldiers was unlawful. We are issuing the court papers this week hopefully, and we will be requesting a document that nullifies the suspension for these soldiers. We are now close to R500 000 in outstanding salaries since they were suspended, not to mention the outstanding benefits as well.
Al-Shabaab's latest targets
Terrorist group Al-Shabaab released a video on Saturday calling for attacks on shopping malls in the US, Canada and the UK. The video - released by the Somalia-based group's official media wing - calls for attacks in the style of Al-Shabaab's 2013 siege on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya, in which more than 60 people were killed. EWN UK's Peter Anderson:
These comments are being taken very seriously, with a lengthy posting on YouTube which appears to have been done by a British man, highlighting 5 specific targets in the US, London. The official line here is that these are being taken seriously (in London), while in the US, it appears that security has been visibly beefed up in shopping malls.
[DEVELOPING] 'Poo Protester 9' await fate
Sentencing is to be handed down at the Belville Regional Court today. EWN's Siyabonga Sesant:
The 9 were in contravention of the Civil Aviation Act for dumping faeces at the Cape Town International Airport. Sentencing will start around 2 o'clock this afternoon. The supporters are awaiting sentencing to find out if they will be handed the minimum sentence of 15 years or be handed a suspended sentence.
No suprises at the Oscars
The mainstream film industry's biggest night - the Oscars - came and went with no major suprises featured on the grand Winners list. Movie critic at The Times newspaper,Tymon Smith:
In terms of the big awards, it met all my expectations and predictions. I am very glad to see that Bradley Cooper and Keira Knightley didn't win awards! Things went down as we all thought they would. I think there were obviously some films that were left out of the nominations; I would have loved to have seen Boyhood get more Oscars, but on the night, everything in the big catergories went to Birdman.