Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Concerns mount over xenophobic violence

Mmmm. It seems Adriana Stuijt's Censorbugbear blog may be vindicated after all. In fact, it is probably more prescient than most. The article I'm posting here is from none other than, wait for it...A loony right wing blog? Nope, from Richmark Sentinel.

It's very brief but you can click on
this link to get the whole enchilada...

O ye of too much faith and short term memory, thy blindness shalt depart from thee and there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth...

Threats of xenophobic violence after the World Cup are spreading quickly in Johannesburg.

The Human Rights Commission, which released a report on xenophobia last year, said it is taking the matter very seriously. The Nelson Mandela Foundation has also added its voice to the chorus of concern led by immigrant organisations.

Eyewitness News spoke to residents in Alexandra, one of the townships hard hit during the 2008 violence in which locals accused immigrants of stealing their women, jobs and belongings. But two years down the line and it appears Alexandra residents still have poor perceptions of foreigners.

“Most of the criminals are those people who come from outside of our country,” said an Alexandra resident.

“Zimbabweans are killing people. At night if you meet him (a Zimbabwean) he will kill you,” said another.

People in the area said there has been talk of a fresh wave of xenophobia.

“I hear rumours that it is going to happen,” said a resident.“After the World Cup, foreigners have to leave the country,” said another.

Human Rights Commission Chairperson Lawrence Mushwana is concerned and said police and government have been given a list of recommendations on how to deal with the problem.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The true South African way




There are robberies, and then there is the South African version of it.

It is to be expected.

With something like the world cup in progress, we have to expect that the criminal side of South Africa will have a field day. To relieve people of their belongings is not something new, and it will happen, regardless the country.

What however stands out is the manner in which this one went down.

And to put it mildly, this one went down mildly…….even if it was perceived as robbery with violence.

And I want to highlight just one of the comments on this article.

• “Welcome to hell on earth. Why do you think a million south africans have fled? These tourists got off lightly. There are many cases where women are raped as their husbands are forced to look, and babies are murdered. A month ago two white women were sexually assualted with broken bottles before being hacked to death. People of all reaces are suffering under one of the worst crime rates in the world. And the govenrment is corrupt from top to bottom. What is happening now is worse than apartheid ever was. The world chooses to look away.”


Aussies robbed at Cup

ARMED gunmen tied up and robbed Australian soccer fans at their hotel in South Africa on Thursday, with reports a woman was also sexually assaulted by the gang.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade confirmed the incident, which took place when the Australians returned to their Hazyview hotel about midnight after the match between the Socceroos and Serbia.

Hotel guest Steve Gaynor, who lost $10,000 worth of goods from his room while he was downstairs in a nearby bar, said four Nigerian men with rifles and handguns followed the Australians back to the hotel and attacked them in their rooms.

"I had watched the match from the hotel that night and about 12.30am three cars arrived back at the hotel and people started filing in," Mr Gaynor said.

"I was in the bar and some people came in there while others went back to their rooms.

"While we were sitting in the lodge bar we were oblivious to what was going on. These poor kids were tied up, held at gunpoint and robbed. My room was robbed, but luckily I wasn't in there when they broke through the window."

Mr Gaynor said one female Australian had been sexually assaulted in the attack.

The Australian Federal Police confirmed an off-duty member was one of the victims, who took control and tried to keep others calm, Mr Gaynor said.

"They took cash, jewellery and watches off the people they had tied up and stole phones and laptops," he said.

"I think they knew Aussies were in that hotel, they were targeting us.

"It was robbery with violence. One guy was on the floor and the man had his boot on his head and told him not to move or he is dead - it was serious.

"It's just horrible."

The gunmen fired shots as they fled by vehicle.

Mr Gaynor returned to Australia on Saturday after Australian consular staff provided him with an emergency passport.

Toilet Dispute Continues: Zille Walks out of Meeting

Eish! what a mess. If you don't get what you want - break something. Or, everything. Make the city ungovernable so the government will provide stuff for you.

This is what passes for logic amongst members of the ANCYL.

While Zille proves once again what proper government looks like, and the ANC are left looking like the thugs they are, the sinister undertones of this whole issue remain: whitey exists to provide whatever the locals want.

Am I extrapolating too far? There's no doubt a political angle to the unreasonable demands being made on the City of Cape Town, whose budgets are already stretched to the limits. Thousands of new residents pitch up every month with a ready-made list of demands to be met and no intention of contributing anything to the City other than violence. The ANC is trying to destabilise the DA-led Western Cape and this is their strategy - which, like all their strategies, come at the cost of their 'own' people's comfort and livelihood.

The DA's crime? (apart from not being the ANC, that is) = Not sufficiently milking the productive population to provide free stuff for whoever decides they want to live in Cape Town. Because productive areas of South Africa are only allowed to continue existing on the condition they give, give, give. Give not quite enough, and we wreck the place. Give enough, but not quite as fast as we want it, and we make the city "ungovernable".

Ungovernable must be the longest English word in the ANC lexicon. I wonder who taught it to them?

Cape Town - Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and Cape Town mayor Dan Plato walked out of a meeting on toilets on Thursday after what she said was another threat by the ANC Youth League to make the city ungovernable.

The closed meeting was convened by Co-operative Governance Minister Sicelo Shiceka in a bid to resolve a dispute over provision of toilets in the Makhaza area of Khayelitsha.

It began in Khayelitsha's Solomon Mahlangu community hall just after 14:00, but Zille and Dan Plato emerged 15 minutes later.

Zille told waiting journalists that youth league member Andile Lili had in the meeting repeated the league's threat to make the Democratic Alliance-controlled city ungovernable.

She and Plato were not prepared to give an organisation that used violent, racist and insulting language legitimacy by staying in the meeting.

"While people are there who are threatening to make the city ungovernable and to destroy property, we are not going to be part of those discussions," she said.
She and Plato were happy to talk to genuine representatives who had an electoral mandate.

Brick and mortar

Lili, who said he was at the meeting "on behalf of the community" as chairperson of a ward development forum, later denied her accusation.

"That's false... she never wanted to sit with us. She knows very well we've got all the facts.

"She ran away from this meeting," he told reporters.

League official Loyiso Nkohla, who was also at the meeting, made a similar threat last month.

A row erupted earlier this year over the fact that about 50 toilets installed by the council in a site and service scheme had not been enclosed.

When the council, which maintains that the community agreed to erect enclosures themselves, eventually put up tin and iron structures, league and community members tore them down, demanding brick and mortar.

The council subsequently removed the toilets altogether.

Disputes of fact

Shiceka on Thursday visited residents affected by the dispute and then, along with Zille and Plato, addressed several hundred in an open-air meeting.

He told reporters after the aborted meeting in the hall that he had never seen such an arrangement in any other part of the country.

"This is a Cape Town phenomenon, which to me is surprising and strange," he said.

He believed the row came down to disputes of fact between the provincial and city governments and the community.

He said the city insisted that the norm of one toilet to five households applied to Makhaza.

"That one is to five applies to informal settlements. That place there (Makhaza) is definitely not an informal settlement.

"You can't have tarred streets, you can't have water-borne sewage, you can't... give people title deeds."

However he was confident a solution could be found.

National norms

He intended to meet the SA Human Rights Commission to understand the thinking behind its recent report on the toilets.

The provincial and city governments would be asked to join a team that included his and other national departments.

"On the basis of that we want to take the process forward in dealing with the issues," he said.

Zille told reporters earlier she believed the 1:5 norm applied to site and service as well as to squatter areas.

The city was already providing a toilet for each house, five times more than the national norms and standards required.

"If people are unhappy with that, they must get the minister to change the national norms and standards," she said.

She said there was a simple solution to the issue.

"The moment enclosures are put up by the city and stay up, the toilets will be back. That's been the solution from the beginning and it hasn't changed."

- SAPA

Should circumcision schools be monitored?

One of the most fun stages of learning about Southern African 'culture' is the point where circumcision is explained. It's always done in a humorous manner, and I can see why. The spectacle of a bunch of young men wearing blankets in a field next to the main road in preparation for a brutally painfully and unnecessary piece of "surgery" is comical in a cruel sort of way.

The pain must be excruciating. I've been reliably informed that the trimmed member cannot be used for its intended purpose for a few months afterwards, and this sounds like a good thing to me. The idea of South Africa's finest young males being unable to procreate for a given time is a blessing to the whole country, particularly to anyone who has a daughter.

One would think that the sheer discomfort involved would give the sufferer a newfound respect for the aforesaid member, perhaps teaching him the wisdom of using it only at appropriate times. Sadly, this lesson is neither taught nor learnt, and the young men continue to impregnate with glee.

I cannot summon sympathy for the victims - and I have tried. It's probably because the story below caused me to envision myself in the position of one of the hapless initiates who "had to be rushed to hospital with mutilated penises, which had to be amputated to save their lives."

My response: Doctor, just shoot me!

The minister of traditional affairs was considering the regulation of initiation schools after reports of many boys dying from being circumcised at illegal initiation schools.

"The department has also submitted a policy paper on the traditional practice of initiation which seeks to introduce the accountability of traditional leaders for this practice, as well as look into the general management of initiation schools and the criminalisation and harsh sentencing for those found to be running illegal initiation schools," Minister Sicelo Shiceka said in a statement.

City Press reported on Sunday that dozens of young Xhosa initiates were dying in the Eastern Cape bush because of illegal initiation practices. Many survivors had to be rushed to hospital with mutilated penises, which had to be amputated to save their lives.

Shiceka said he was still considering the paper on the regulation of the practice.

"The deaths are totally unnecessary. Parents need to talk to their children more about the serious risks they subject themselves to when they go to these illegal initiation schools, in the name of a long honoured cultural practice," said Shiceka.

"The police also must be even stronger in acting against those who bring this cultural practice into disrepute through greed and a complete disregard for tradition, resulting in the horrific deaths and maiming of our young people."

He said if anyone was found to be running an initiation school without authorisation, police should arrest them immediately.

"Our young people should be encouraged to only attend legal and reputable initiation schools that have the blessings of local traditional leaders, government and their parents," he said. - Sapa

Sunday, June 27, 2010

How Does The UN Work? If at all ...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Jeremy Gordin: A murderous mayhem is brewing

h/t Ingrid, who provided the edited content.

Jeremy Gordin on disturbing undercurrents beneath the World Cup bonhomie

One of the oddest things to emerge from the world cup this week was the comment allegedly made by Jacob G Zuma after the Bafana/Arsenal B match on Tuesday night.

According to the report I heard, Zuma said that, now that Bafana are out, we Seffricans must support the African teams, and if they all disappear (as they might in the next 75 minutes - I'm writing this during the German-Ghana game), then we must support the South Americans because they're from the southern hemisphere, as are we.

And if the South Americans disappear (which they won't - but if they do), then are we supposed to support the Europeans because they're the only ones left? What is this? The old south-north struggle? The war of the hemispheres? Sometimes JGZ should think before he speaks.

But enough football talk for the nonce.

Until recently, say four-five weeks ago, when my car radio gave up the ghost, I spent a fair amount of time, while doing the early morning school shuttle, listening to John "don't call me Robbie" Robbie on Radio 702 - carrying on about the possibility of new xenophobic attacks.

I have written "carrying on" because I found it irritating - and irresponsible. Why keep putting things into people's heads if they aren't there? Why raise issues that don't need raising? Why sew panic?

But it seems that I might have been the arse.

A focused look across the news of the last three weeks or so shows that xenophobia has raised its ugly, ugly head again, so much so that the government has re-established an inter-ministerial committee (IMC) to deal with xenophobic attacks against foreigners during or soon after the world cup.

"The IMC will liaise with civil society structures to ensure that a country-wide approach is adopted to prevent any form of violence against anyone," cabinet spokesperson Themba Maseko said.

"Government," he added, "would like to re-iterate that any attacks are totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated. The law enforcement agencies will not hesitate to act speedily and decisively against anyone found to incite or participate in violent acts against foreign nationals."

Most chillingly - for me, anyway - was a conversation I had yesterday with a Wits student who is part of the "2010 football newsroom" that I am news editing at Wits' Journalism school (www.witsvuvuzela.2010.co.za).

She hails from Limpopo and went last weekend to visit some relatives living in Diepsloot. There she interviewed some locals who said they were going to "attack" foreigners as soon as the world cup was over.

I said to her that I wasn't happy with running a story in which unidentified people made these "hate" claims about what they would do later to foreigners living in their community.

"I mean, this is serious stuff we're talking about. The last time this happened, there were 62 people murdered," I said.

"I know," she said - and then told me the background story to her interviews.

She had encountered a huge crowd that had gotten hold of a young Zimbabwean. Crowd members claimed they had caught him stealing soccer tops from a vendor - and they had beaten him to a pulp.

"Blood was running down his face when they took him away, I was very frightened," she said to me.

"Taking him where?" I asked.

"Some of the kids who went with the crowd told me later that he had been killed. They told me that they were killing people like that Zimbabwean almost every day."

"Weren't there any policemen around?" I asked.

"Yes," she replied, "they arrived later, after it was over. I believe that what happens is that the police make sure that they arrive late in Diepsloot. If they intervened and tried to save the victim, the crowd would attack them - and they're frightened of that."

Her story had, alas, the ring of truth. It seems that while our police are being coerced into worrying about young women in orange mini-skirts or irascible English fans going to talk to their team in the changing rooms, serious, murderous mayhem is brewing again.

Maybe we're not as far as we like to think from Saigon, Kabul or Baghdad or from Algiers in the late 1950s.

So close to escaping hellhole of Jo'burg

...And here's the article itself, from New Zealander Chris Rattue


Fencing covered by razor wire is seen outside the main press  centre next to Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg. Photo / AP

Fencing covered by razor wire is seen outside the main press centre next to Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg. Photo / AP

One way or other, the All Whites will be out of this hellhole in days, and we will be off with them.

To Durban, probably, or home, and quite honestly, preferably the latter in some ways.

Johannesburg is an eye-opener, in a way that makes you want to shut the eyes tight and dream of elsewhere.

This is the most dangerous dump I have ever been in.

Sepp Blatter and his superstar Fifa mates may have been right to bring the World Cup to Africa, but they will be enjoying a luxury ride.

Blatter hasn't had to wait outside Ellis Park in the dark, surrounded by people, police cars driving by, hoping the promised van turns up before violent robbers do.

The stories I have heard of life here are heartbreaking, tragic, awful.

We have met some wonderful people, without a doubt.

We have also met wonderful people with doubt, because you quickly learn never to trust.

One in our contingent has had his credit card skimmed, probably by the smiling, waving bloke at our only regular cafe.

And while trying to get money out of an ATM, a hand that came with a happy face suddenly grabbed the card, supposedly with the offer of help. Sure.

And don't step out of your compound at night alone. Don't even think about it.

Our van driver took us to a posh shopping mall he said was safe, except for the carpark.

This is a place where you look over your shoulder, without making eye contact.

As for the stories ... I don't know how people live here. They say they become immune.

The include a man whose wife was stabbed for a cellphone, had a friend shot and paralysed in her driveway and a mate taken on a carjack ride.

There's a motorway off-ramp that was once more like a shooting gallery for robbers. People are left for dead, or needing wheelchairs.

How is the World Cup coming across at home? It's all about the soccer, I suppose.

Not when you are here, though.

We have been through a magic ride with the All Whites in and around Jo'burg and, on leaving, it will be for the last time.

Why Lie About SA Crime?

Adriana Stuijt, tireless journalist of South African crime, posts from a comments section of a New Zealand news site. A commentator, claiming to be from France, writes about crimes committed against friends of his during the World Cup. When I read it, my alarms immediately went off. Here is the text:

Just returned. Francois (France)
11:51AM Friday, 25 Jun 2010
My 4 Eyropean friends were robbed and raped in most brutal fashion close to Rustenburg and then again insulted by local Police who blamed them for not having been careful. They were ridiculed and 2 girls had to go on retro-viral medications.

Anyone on this site claiming SA is safe is as far I am concerned a Propaganda writer hired by either the ANC or FIFA. That you would toy with tourists lives like that is pathetic and sickening. Your country has become a disgraceful increasingly 3rd world joke.

We will never forgive FIFAs BS safety propaganda nor forgive the safety crap you spewed before we arrived there.

We hope FIFA gets its derierre sued for playing with people lives.Bon voyage to anyone stupid enough to still visit your crime infested, corrupt and racist country. All we experienced was trauma worth a lifetime. Thanks to the writer of you story to tell your experience. We wish we would have known all this before going.
This is something that really bothers me about South African crime reports; there is so much of it about that there's no need to bullshit. And this comment is bullshit.

First of all, this is not written by a Frenchman. He has misspelt derriere ...

It is written by someone whose first language is probably English, as you can tell from the use of colloqualisms, and from the pathetic effort to insert French words.

Also, what kind of person casually mentions that his friends were raped?

It frustrated me because there are so many true stories to tell, so why make them up? It's not like similar events don't happen all the time in SA.

It goes to show that the only way you can, to quote the author, "spew" "crap" is to talk out of your backside!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

2010 World Cup Scrapbook, by Madam&Eve

very good! (click image to enlarge)
h/t Ingrid

Foreigners Exempt from AA Laws

In a way, this makes sense, in that the twisted logic of AA should be apparent to all.

However, fat lot of good the exemption does us if we can't get work permits in the first place.

H/T Cape Independence Movement

Foreigners exempt from AA laws

Parliament - South Africa's affirmative action laws do not apply to foreigners working in the country, Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana said on Wednesday.

"Provisions are made in the regulations for employers to record and report on foreign nationals separately, however, they are not targeted for affirmative action," Mdladlana said in reply to a parliamentary question from the Inkatha Freedom Party.

The minister said the Employment Equity Act sought to eliminate discrimination and implement affirmative action measures to ensure the representation of black people, women and people with disabilities.

"The affirmative action part only applies to designated employers and individuals from the designated groups."

Mdladlana was also asked whether it was permissible for an employer to refuse to fill a post if a qualified white candidate had applied but there were no suitable black candidates.

"Where a South African black candidate is not available for a post, and if all things are equal, the South African white candidate should receive preference," he said.

- Sapa

Khayelitsha residents burn tyres to reduce visibility while they go to the loo



Hat tip: Ingrid


CAPE TOWN. Insults, accusations of racism, and warm fresh feces are flying in Khayelitsha in the ongoing dispute over open toilets after relations between the Democratic Alliance and the ANC Youth League reportedly bottomed out.

The riots have been triggered by a showdown between the ANC Youth League and the Democratic Alliance-led City of Cape Town, in which both sides keep tearing down the enclosures around the toilets, putting up new enclosures around the toilets, tearing down the enclosures that the other side have just put up around the toilets in order to put up their own enclosures, telling the residents to put up their own damned enclosures, telling them to burn tyres to protest the other side of the dispute, taking away the toilets altogether, and throwing shit.

Meanwhile, the residents of Khayelitsha have taken to burning tyres in the streets to reduce visibility while they relieve themselves behind the bushes.

The ANCYL has accused the DA of racism for providing second-rate toilets to Khayelitsha residents. The DA claims that the ANCYL approved of the toilets in the planning stage, and furthermore that the ANCYL’s mommas are so fat. The ANCYL responded by upending a full bucket-toilet on the DA’s freshly dry-cleaned carpet. The DA responded by flinging handfuls of excrement at leading ANCYL members and their spokespeople.

Both sides have called on the Khayelitsha citizens to throw excrement at each other.

Political analyst Elias Khazi described it as a messy situation.

“If the DA don’t take the resident’s crap away then they’ll take crap from the ANCYL, who are giving the residents crap by stopping the DA from taking their crap. But the longer the residents go without a crap, the more likely they are to believe the ANCYL’s crap about the DA not giving a crap about them.

“Basically, It’s not about race. It’s not black versus white. In this fight, both sides are the same shade of brown.”

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Noooo! Not during the World Cup!


Senseless axe attack on Baty

Written by Nicolene Smalman and Mark Kinnear - Tuesday, 22 June 2010 09:31

WHITE RIVER - Mr Charlie Baty (70) lay in a hospital bed, in the intensive care unit on Friday morning. His head was bandaged and bruised, and his small frame was almost indiscernible under the sheets. The ventilator pipe in his mouth seemed unnaturally large and the sound of all the medical machinery around him bore testimony to the seriousness of his condition. But he seemed peaceful, despite his horrific injuries.

Baty had always been at peace with himself and the world. Always positive, always helping others.

After 53 years in South Africa, the Scotsman was planning to leave these shores to be with his family in the United States. But a recent incident of extreme violence took his fate and future out of his hands.

This much-loved and well-known member of the community was brutally attacked with an axe last Thursday afternoon and as yet no suspect has been apprehended.

He was found in his home in Magaliesberg Street after he had suffered severe injuries to his head.

According to his goddaughter, Ms Gillian James, he had gone to the Methodist Church in town just after 13:00. A friend visited him afterwards and left at about 15:30. Another friend, Mr Peter du Plessis, arrived at his home at 15:55. The entrance gate and front door were open and he entered and discovered him unconscious in the passage.

J&M Security, the police and Bossie’s Justice were summoned to the scene and paramedics of ER24 and Netcare 911 stabilised him before taking him to Nelspruit Medi-Clinic.

The police’s dog and forensic units swept the area for clues.

Lt Col Erhard Ströh, head of detectives at the White River Police, said that a bloodied axe was later found in a field behind the home. There was a hole in the back fence, but it was not clear how long it had been there. Ströh added that it was also not clear what had been taken.

Baty was first treated in the cardio-thoracic ICU, but has since been moved to the general ICU where he is being ventilated. He suffered extensive damage to the right side of the head and brain and his ear was almost severed during the attack. James added that the swelling was subsiding and his condition was described as stable.

One of his daughters, Ms Jenny Davidson arrived in the country on Sunday. Baty has three other children, Ms Cathy Palm, Mr Alistair Baty and Ms Janet Hunt, who also reside in America. His house had been sold in January and he was to emigrate to the USA in August. Baty, a leading figure in local Scouting, is a member of the Stevenson-Hamilton Pipe Band who came to South Africa more than 50 years ago.

Eskom Strike - Prepare to Play in Darkness

It looks like they're actually going to do it. Outrage, at this stage, is probably misplaced, as many could have foreseen such an event as an Eskom strike during the World Cup coming a mile off.

Nonetheless, some element of incredulity might be permitted me when it comes to the Eskom 'workers'.

They show contempt for every single South African - and international guest - by their appalling and opportunistic actions, which are only made more unacceptable by their timing. The timing is, of course, crucial, for they know they can hold the country to ransom with their ever-expanding list of demands.

Contempt, too, for every South African who is out of work and has given up trying.

Bastards.

An Eskom strike during the World Cup was still a possibility as the national power provider's negotiations with three trade unions ended in disagreement on Monday night.

A commissioner for the Commission of Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) had given Eskom until 10am on Wednesday to consult its executive committee on the unions' revised demand of a nine-percent increase and a R5 000 per month housing allowance per employee.

"They said they don't have a mandate to agree to it," said trade union Solidarity's chief negotiator Bennie Blignaut on Monday night.

"We have agreed to disagree."

Solidarity, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) had initially demanded a 15-percent across the board increase and a housing allowance of R5 000.

The unions proposed a settlement offer of nine percent at the meeting on Monday.

"It was not our mandate, but it was an agreed settlement offer that we decided on earlier in the week," said Blignaut.

"We said give us nine percent and the housing allowance, then we would sign now, but they didn't want to do it," he said.

Eskom tabled a revised offer of an eight-percent across-the-board increase on basic salary, a 5.6-percent increase to key allowances and a R12 000 once-off payment per employee.

The R12 000 payment, which the company said would be ex-gratia (as a goodwill gesture), would be paid in two equal instalments, in July 2010 and July 2011.

Blignaut said Eskom's offer was linked to a new cost to company system that the power provider wanted to initiate next year.

"We're not even going to take that to our members," said Blignaut.

"The cost to company system is a whole new system that we have to go and explain to our members."

He said if Eskom failed to return with a new offer on Wednesday, the unions - who were still in agreement on the issue - would go on strike.

"It would be an unprotected strike, because they are essential services, but that is a chance we will have to take," said Blignaut.

He said the commissioner refused to issue a certificate for a dispute, even though the unions felt they had reached a deadlock.

"If they don't bring something to the table on Wednesday, he would issue the certificate," said Blignaut. He said the unions' demand went back to 15 percent after the meeting.

Eskom's human resources head Bhabhalazi Bulunga, who attended the negotiations at the CCMA's offices in Johannesburg, said the power utility's offer was "very reasonable" as it was well above the inflation rate.

"That is very generous in today's economic climate, and it comes on top of the other benefits our workers already enjoy," Bulunga said. - Sapa

Monday, June 21, 2010

When You Combine Your Loyalties, You Get ...

The True Origins of The Vuvuzela

These pictures bring a new meaning to the term "Blow my horn".








Race Card!



I was wondering when someone was going to play it bold as brass, and here it is...Blame the coach! I never said it before (I gave them a fair shake) but it needs saying now. The baboona baboona EXPECTED to go through to the next round of the SWC, purely because of a culture of entitlement, and when they did not get their way, instead of taking responsibility for their own actions, they found someone else to blame. Fuck them, I'm predicting 6 nil in favour of France. Viva le Francais!

Radebe wants local coach to replace Parreira

South Africa’s Brazilian coach has picked the wrong players and should be replaced by a home-grown manager after their expected first-round World Cup exit, according to former skipper Lucas Radebe.

Radebe, who won 70 caps for Bafana Bafana between 1992 and 2003, said Carlos Alberto Parriera’s gamble to rely on local players rather than experienced performers from overseas league had backfired.

The hosts are now expected to crash out of the Cup at the first hurdle when they play France in their final Group A match in Bloemfontein on Tuesday.

No home nation has failed to reach the second round at least in the tournament.

“There’s a pool of players who could have at least added to the team who are experienced,” he told reporters in Johannesburg.

"With Nasief (Morris) in the team and his experience ... playing at this level I think ... we could have done better,” he said of the defender excluded from the squad and who plays in Spain for Racing Santander.

FOREIGN COACH

Radebe told Reuters after the news conference that the team needed a South African coach, adding players found it hard to relate to a foreign manager.

"If we use our own (coaches) it can really make a difference and to have a better selection as well in terms of how we know our players, how we know our own type of football instead of trying to change to the European style,” he said.

“I’d like to see a South African coach after the World Cup.”

Of local media reports of dissent in the camp, Radebe said: ”I think possibly there might have been something brewing for a while - we came into the tournament with problems and a lot of criticism.”

But he said the team must forget it and not degenerate as France had in a boycott of training on Sunday over the expulsion of striker Nicolas Anelka for abusing the coach.

“We can’t copy France outside the field of play - what’s left is to salvage our pride against France.”

He added that South Africa simply did not have the quality of players needed to compete at such a high level.

"We still lack a quality to compete at this level,” he said.

“It’s all about the players. If you don’t have the quality in terms of the players or in terms of the play, it’s always going to be difficult.”

Another South African Goal

.... but not for South Africa

Mark Dennis Gonzalez headed one past Switzerland today. But he plays for Chile, although he was born and raised in Durban, proving that much South African football talent lies overseas.

Remember Roy Wegerle? He played for the USA in two World Cups, but was born in Pretoria. He was naturalised through his American wife and scored seven goals for the national team.

Gary Bailey, while born in England, was raised in SA. He was reserve goalkeeper on the England squad for the 1986 World Cup but only won two caps. He now does the rounds as a TV commentator on Supersport.

Bruce Grobbelaar was also born in Durban, and was only prevented from playing for England because he had previously been on the Rhodesian national team. Grobbelaar was probably South Africa's greatest footballing export (praise indeed from an Everton fan).

South Africa may want to consider looking overseas for their talent; Everyone else does. The number of foreign-born players on national teams has increased in each World Cup, but ancestral connections are still a good source of players. It might not go down well with the hoi polloi, but if the current poor performance of Bafana Bafana continues (much worse than previous World Cups), anything is worth a try.

In spite of massive chaos in the French camp, only a fool would put money on South Africa tomorrow.

**UPDATE**
It's just been pointed out to me that Scotland international Richard Gough grew up in SA (although he was born in Sweden). Gough played for Scotland 61 times, including during the 1986 World Cup. Any more additions to the list, let me know!

**Craig Johnston, usually thought of as an Australian, made the England squad in 1988 although never played for the senior team. He did play for the under-21s and the 'B' team. Johnston was born in Johannesburg.

**I deliberately left out Sean William Dundee because he never played internationally for Germany, although he was one of the top goalscorers in the German league in his day.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

FW: Hey, has anyone seen Jonas lately?


Saturday, June 19, 2010

Angelina Jolie "Too White" to Play Cleopatra

H/T Ghostofaflea

Here we go with the black Egyptians again!

Essence Magazine complains,

Just when we thought there weren't enough leading roles for Black women in Hollywood, they create one and give it to a White woman.

Well, when they make a movie about a black woman they'll be sure to cast an appropriate actress. Cleopatra was, of course, Greek. (Or, rather, Macedonian - a descendant of Alexander's general, Ptolemy.)
Gasp, the nerve! "She's got the perfect look?" Honestly, I don't care how full Angelina Jolie's lips are, how many African children she adopts, or how bronzed her skin will become for the film, I firmly believe this role should have gone to a Black woman.
Bit racist, but what do you expect from someone who considers Cleopatra to have been an "African Queen"? Angelina played a Macedonian in the godawful flick "Alexander" - complete with Russian accent - so seems to have some experience for the job. Needs to work on the accent though ...

Two movies about Carthaginian conqueror Hannibal Barca are in production at the moment, one starring Denzel Washington and the other, Vin Diesel. Well, historically he came from Tunisia, right? That's in Africa, right? One can envision the producers scrabbling through the drawers to find a world map and then giving up.

The fact that the Carthaginians were of Lebanese extraction adds too much confusion for the Hollywood elites and their audiences. Vin Diesel is definitely the better choice, even if the race-baiters will bitch and moan about it.




MEC's house torched during burglary



More "petty" theft going down in ZA. But don't fret, gentle tourist, you are safe in ZA as guests of the ANC, who in turn have abdicated entrusted your wellbeing to the safe hands of Fifa. After all, you are paying three times more than usual for everything...


And puhleeeease, don't worry about all the nasty reports of crime in ZA, especially disregard the fact South Africa has some of the highest incidences of
child and baby rape amongst black communities in the world!


Pshhaawww! That's not for you to get a headache over, we'll deal with that crap all on our own. Run along now and have more fun...be sure to spend lots of money suckers friends!!!!! Erm, sorry about the vuvuzelas, you'll just have to take that as a whatchamacallitthingamabob...oh yes a "cultural expression"...



MEC's house torched during burglary





Johannesburg - A house in Johannesburg belonging to Gauteng Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation MEC Nelisiwe Moerane was torched during a burglary early on Saturday morning.

"The extent of the damage is not yet known and this can only be determined once full investigations have been completed," a statement from Moerane's office said.

Moerane and her family were not at home when the incident occurred.

"The police are investigating and we hope the perpetrators are brought to book."

Why South Africa Lost



Hat tip - Ingrid


Sy Lerman says vuvuzelas don't win soccer matches, players do


JOHANNESBURG - Vuvuzelas, as Bafana Bafana have now cruelly discovered, don't win soccer matches.

Players win soccer games.

And when players of lesser experience and know-how are thrown into the deep end of a challenging World Cup cauldron - as Bafana Bafana were in the 3-0 demolition by Uruguay at a shell-shocked, iced-up Loftus Versfeld Stadium on Wednesday night - without the right kind of match conditioning and preparation it should come as no surprise when they end up sinking into an abyss of despair and failure.

Ranked 83rd in the world, the initial gnawing and disturbing realisation that South Africa might well become the first host nation of a World Cup in 80 years not to progress beyond the first round, emerged when the draw last December placed them in a first-round group that included the now ninth-ranked France, 16th-ranked Uruguay and 17th-rated Mexico.

So what happened after this cruel and unexpected stroke of fate had befallen them? Bafana ignored the obvious and urgent objective to acclimitise themselves to the kind of opposition they were destined to face in the World Cup and proceded to pump up a false level of security, optimism and confidence by going through 13 unbeaten matches against teams that were mainly mediocre and worse.

None of the sides Bafana faced in this misconstructed build-up period measured up to France, Uruguay and Mexico - and so it was almost inevitable the old maxim that you reap what you sow would come into play.

As any sportsman will tell you, when you step up a level without suitable preparation you are simply looking for trouble and destined to flounder.

Yet, for all this, the mood after the opening 1-1 draw against a Mexican side that followed well the old Muhammad Ali maxim of "floating like a butterfly", but possessed none of the great man's follow-up assertion to "sting like a bee" was epitomised by the headline "We have nothing to fear from Uruguay."

So who to blame for Bafana preparing for the World Cup against the likes of hastily-assembled Thailand and Guatamala?

Well the South African Football Association (Safa) - both the present regime and that, which preceded them in what was effectively a coup last year - must jointly take the lion's share of the blame.

An adequate programme of build-up games should have been implemented for Bafana from the moment that South Africa were awarded the historic right of becoming the first African nation to stage the World Cup.

But seasoned coach Carlos Alberto Parreira is not blameless either, despite his constant refrain of looking for tougher matches.

Parreira has been around for a long time during his twin-pronged tenure with Bafana and he too should have looked ahead.

Instead, it seemed, he became sucked in by the spreading delusion of major progress which emanated from the unbeaten streak against the make-shift minnows.

And now Bafana are perched on the edge of a precipes of extinction after the first round from its own World Cup.

Only an amazing outcome of results and scores in the remaining Group A games can save them, with their fate now largely out of their own hands and the suspensions of goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune and Kagisho Dikgacoi adding to ther wavering loss of morale and confidence.

And while Safa president Kirsten Nematandani is optimistic Bafana will stage a comeback against France in Bloemfontein on Tuesday, they might well find themselves playing for nothing more than to restore a measure of pride.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Afriforum Objects to "Peter Mokaba" Stadium

Interesting from CensorBugBear.

I am opposed to the cult of renaming (unless it's re-renaming, like Leningrad). It happens everywhere and goes little way to establishing peace and goodwill. In fact, the triumphalism it expresses spreads nothing but ill will. How many people abroad watched the game today knowing that Polokwane is properly called Pietersburg?

Towns are often named after the person who founded them (or their monarch). Pretoria, Nelspruit, Port Elizabeth, all meant something to the people who founded them and lived in them. Have they been re-founded? Then why should they be re-named?

Would we play football in the Adolph Hitler Stadium?

Afriforum ‘s video explains why it objects to the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Pietersburg/Polokwane

Imagine if a FIFA World Cup stadium in Germany had been named the Adolph Hitler Stadium. Would Germany have permitted that? Or FIFA? Would they just have glossed over the names of those responsible for the deaths of so many?

Why then will FIFA 2010 World Cup matches be played at the Peter Mokaba Stadium? Peter Mokaba openly encouraged the murder of innocent South Africans and he influenced the South African Government to deny the existence of HIV/Aids.

More than 3,500 farmers and smallholders have been brutally murdered under ANC-hegemony -- because of what Mokaba stood for with his chants of “Kill the Boer, Kill the Farmer”; his terrorist-activities in the Pietersburg region as a member of Umkhonte we Sizwe (the still active military branch of the African National Congress). Mokaba has never testified at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission – however former SADF officers did testify at the TRCe that Mokaba was suspected of many violent acts of terrorism causing the deaths of many people; that he was arrested for carrying out terrorist acts; but that three of his comrades had taken the rap and gone to jail instead when they refused to testify against him.


read the rest

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Pictorial Guide to the Vuvuzela

I imagine this originates in SA, but it comes courtesy of NotPC:

VuvuHumour

More vuvu humour here.

Cape Independence Movement Protest in London June 19th

A message from the Cape Independence Movement

Protest - South Africa House 19th June 12pm-4pm


Apologies for the late notice but we were waiting on the Met Police to authorize this. On Saturday we are holding a little protest outside South Africa House in London. If you support the Cape Independence Movement and would like to make a small statement please feel free to join us outside South Africa House on Saturday. The exact position of the protest is yet to be determined (The Met have a few more questions).
Keep an eye n this blog post as it will be updated as and when further information is available.

If you require further details please contact me via my mail address or via the comments section. Obviously we're not expecting droves of people but of course the more the merrier.

Date: 19th June 2010
Time: 12pm-4pm
Dress: Black & White

Please feel free to bring banners/posters etc. Please note however any racist paraphenalia etc will not be tolerated. Bear in mind with protests like this the police will be in attendance and will pretty much nip any racist behaviour in the bud.

See you there!

Zuma "Baffled" By Destruction

President Jacob Zuma praised the National Youth Development Agency for its work in improving the lives of young people, but remained baffled by people who torched public buildings to complain about services.

"It is still baffling as to why someone would torch down a clinic because they do not have a school or destroy a library because the water taps have run dry," said Zuma in a speech prepared for delivery on Youth Day in Thulamahashe, Mpumalanga on Wednesday.

He said it was much easier to destroy than to build, and that every facility was an investment for future generations.

Zuma doesn't get it. Once you create a monster, it's not so easy to cage it again.

read the rest.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Home Affairs has eight employees to deal with backlog

I got an email from my immigration agent today with a PDF document explaining why my work permit application has taken three months, as opposed to the promised 4 weeks.

Apparently, due to the huge level of fraud, particularly in Germiston, Springs, Jo'burg and Pretoria, HA has set up a new central 'hub' so that all visa/immigration/permit applications can be physically sent there for assessment.

At any one time, there are hundreds of productive foreigners waiting in limbo for their permits, and several million rand of investment waiting to come into the country with them. Many want to retire to South Africa, with pensions coming from overseas. Many are business people looking to invest, and many are professionals who are needed by the South African economy.

But corruption, and the huge volume of applications, is playing havoc with the economy once again. HA's response? Eight adjudicators to oversee the centralised 'hub'.

Recently, when Cape Town's HA office tried to take on extra employees to deal with the increased volume of traffic, processing times actually increased, due to productive employees having to train newcomers.

Chickens come home to roost



Hat Tip: Ingrid

Totally hilarious!!!!!

Cape Town - Why did the chicken enter the stadium? The World Cup's organising committee doesn't know, and doesn't like it.

Roosters were seemingly allowed into Cape Town Stadium during the match between France and Uruguay. The Gallic rooster is a French national symbol.

In the Beeld newspaper, a French supporter is shown in a photograph kissing his rooster in the stadium.

"No animals are allowed into stadiums," spokesperson Rich Mkhondo replied to questions by Sapa.

"Just like food and alcohol, the rules state clearly that no animals can be taken into the stadia.

"And why do people want to take their chickens there? The stadium is not there for playing with chickens... it's there to watch soccer."

If a group of Nigerians had been allowed to take their green-painted chickens into Ellis Park stadium in Johannesburg on Saturday, their team may not have lost one-nil to Argentina. A group of them were left clucking outside the stadium.

Ridiculous

"This is ridiculous," John Okoro protested.

"We were allowed to take our chickens in 1998 (World Cup), but these people won't let us," he complained.

Okoro and a few of his countrymen in traditional green robes were attending the second day of the World Cup tournament.

Mkhondo stressed that like South Africans, international guests were also aware of the rules and regulations of attending any FIFA match.

"Our visitors know what the rules are... and what they can and cannot bring into the stadiums. Have you ever seen a live animal being brought into a stadium anywhere else?"

Mkhondo said people could stand outside stadia with their chickens, provided it was outside the ticket zone area. Anyone found attempting to take a pet into a stadium would be denied access, he warned.

http://www.sport24.co.za/Soccer/WorldCup/NationalNews/Chickens-come-home-to-roost-20100613



Durban Rioters Fired

They're taking no shit during the SWC, that's for sure. The only bad news is that they still got paid. R205 is not a lot of money, but it's more than a LOT of other people earn; the 'work' is not hard and everyone else is unemployed so what do they expect?

What kind of employees sign a contract to work and then riot instead of doing their jobs?

And what does it say about the country that visitors' "security" is left in the hands of such thugs?



Detained: Hundreds of security stewards were arrested at the Moses Mabhida stadium during a protest about low wages. Photo: AP


June 15 2010 at 03:09PM

About two thousand disgruntled security guards, watched closely by riot police, handed in their uniforms and received their pay outside Moses Mabhida stadium on Tuesday, two days after violent scenes at the World Cup venue.

Police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse hundreds of protesting guards, unhappy at the level of pay they were being given, after Germany's victory over Australia on Sunday.

On Tuesday, security staff were marshalled by riot police as they queued up to hand in their World Cup accreditations and orange jackets to Stallion Security officials, receiving small brown envelopes containing a day's pay in return.
ne man waved the envelope with R205 rand he had received from the Stallion Security Consortium officials at a blue pick-up and shouted "peanuts, peanuts, peanuts".

"They just told us that our jobs have been taken by the police," said a female security guard, Zanele Mcineka.

"We signed a contract for three months. I want to get a straight answer about whether our jobs are still here."

Organisers said on Monday that police would handle security at the Cape Town and Durban World Cup venues until further notice after a strike by other guards employed by Stallion.

Some former stewards who turned up without the correct papers were turned away by riot police, who had a water cannon on standby.

"We're not fighting with the police, we're fighting for our rights," said Thamsanqa Mapumulo as he was ushered away.

Spain face Switzerland in the second World Cup match at the 62,760-seater Moses Mabhida stadium on Wednesday. - Reuters

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Mens Lingerie - WTF?

Seriously, are we men losing it? Have metro-sexuals become all the rage? I can understand wearing "long johns" in very cold climates, but stockings for men?



These are apparently becoming mainstream.


Oh well at least for some of us we won't have to wear our partner's lingerie anymore.

Study: Vuvuzela could spread colds and flu




JOHANNESBURG — Already criticized by some for being too noisy, the vuvuzela could also be spreading colds and flu germs, according to a London doctor.

The vuvuzela, a long plastic horn as common as uncomfortable seats at soccer matches in South Africa, is just about the most popular item in the country with the World Cup only one day away.

But with the flu season in South Africa in full swing, Dr. Ruth McNerney of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine told The Associated Press that the instrument could cause health issues.

"Vuvuzelas have the potential to spread colds and flu as a lot of breath goes through the vuvuzela," McNerney said, adding that they can infect others on a greater scale than coughing or shouting.

McNerney was involved in a recent study of eight healthy volunteers who blew the vuvuzela in order to measure what comes out at the other end. They found that tiny droplets which can carry flu and cold germs were formed at the bottom of a vuvuzela.

Those particles are small enough to stay suspended in the air for hours, and can enter into the airways of a person's lungs, McNerney said by telephone.

"For ethical reasons, we have not tested sick people yet as we need special permission and a secure room to test sick people in," McNerney said. "But it is evident that the potential of a vuvuzela spreading colds and flu exists."

Dr. Maggi Soer of the Department of Communication Pathology at the University of Pretoria agreed that it could be harmful, especially because people often share vuvuzelas by passing it along to each other to blow.

"For me that is not a healthy principle," Soer said.

But Soer was also concerned about another potential danger: hearing loss.

In a separate study done by Prof. James Hall and Dr. Dirk Koekemoer at the University of Pretoria, it was found that vuvuzelas can have negative effects on people's ear drums when they are exposed to the sound for a certain time period.

Soer, who was present when the study was done and is knowledgeable of the findings, gave some simple advice on how to avoid any danger.

"Wear earplugs to the games," she said. "Either buy them at a pharmacy or make them yourselves and take it with you to the soccer games."

Despite the health risks, some soccer fans aren't at all concerned.

"I am not worried," said Matthew M'Crystal, a 24-year-old law student. "Anyway, it won't kill us."

Others, however, don't want to chance it.

"We have to take certain precautions to avoid spreading diseases with the vuvuzelas," said Shireen Morgan, a local housewife and mother of two who said she allows her children to blow vuvuzelas, but explained that she "gives them medicine" to keep them from getting ill.

As for the fans in South Africa just for the World Cup, it's going to take more than the threat of a cold to keep them from taking part in the local phenomenon.

"I could have died in Mexico," said Ricardo Avila, a 56-year-old soccer fan visiting South Africa for the tournament. "So no, it does not bother me."

Friday, June 11, 2010

Greek players, Chinese reporters robbed

And it begins. Now for the negativity - plenty of crime and, in the case of the Chinese at least, some roving armed gangs looking for vulnerable foreigners. Vulnerable in this case meaning, 'without automatic weapons'.



Three Greek World Cup players had money stolen from their hotel rooms and Chinese journalists were robbed at gunpoint, officials said on Thursday.

World Cup 2010

Another 11 tourists were robbed of passports and luxury goods while visiting a wine farm near Cape Town, adding to several separate incidents against tourists less than 24 hours ahead of the opening match between host nation South Africa and Mexico. [ID:nLDE6591F]

The incidents in the crime-plagued host country follow the armed robbery of Spanish and Portuguese journalists at a lodge north of Johannesburg on Wednesday. [ID:nLDE65816H]

South Africa, which has spent heavily on security, has been hoping the World Cup would boost its tourism sector and provide a jolt of pride for the continent but experts say persistent reports of crime could undermine those aspirations.

Greek team spokesman Michael Tsapidis said the players were not upset by the theft at the Beverly Hills Hotel in Durban and they were "extremely satisfied" with the way the hotel had responded to the incident. [ID:nLDE6591GK]

"In our opinion this is not such a big deal. This incident is something that could happen anywhere in the world," he told a news conference.

The three Chinese journalists has been in the country for a few hours and were on their way to the main venue for the Cup in Soccer City on the edge of Soweto, a sprawling township outside of Johannesburg, the local paper Beeld reported citing various sources.

They stopped on the side of the road when gunmen approached and stole equipment from their vehicle, it said.

Chinese embassy officials confirmed the robbery but offered few details. South Africa police said the incident has not been officially reported and were looking into the case.

Petty theft is a fact of life in South Africa, a country of that averages 50 murders a day.

TOURISTS ROBBED AT WINE FARM

Police said a group of tourists from Canada, Denmark, Finland, Sweden and Tanzania returned to their bus at a visit to a wine estate outside Cape Town to find nine passports, two digital cameras, a laptop and $500 cash missing. A case of theft had been opened, a statement said.

FIFA said on Thursday three arrests had been made for the armed robbery of Spanish and Portuguese journalists at a lodge in Magaliesburg, a sleepy, scenic town about an hour north of Johannesburg, and all the stolen property had been recovered.

The thieves made off with cameras, computers, credit cards and cash. The FIFA spokesman played down the incident, saying the soccer body's main concern was traffic chaos.

Police bolstered their presence in the Magaliesburg, where the Portugal squad base and police chief Bheki Cele visited the area on Thursday to express regret over the matter, a statement said.

"General Cele assured the group that all plans for a safe World Cup were still on track and he was confident that South Africans and fans alike will have a fantastic time over the next month," the statement said.

But travelling journalists including one held at gunpoint were angry at FIFA for not showing greater concern for their safety.

"It's just ridiculous, a total lack of respect for people who have come here to work, to show this country to the whole world," said photographer Antonio Simoes.

The raided hotel now has several police officers patrolling the grounds around the clock and almost all the other hotels have police or private security protecting journalists.

"FIFA saying it was more concerned with traffic than someone being attacked in a hotel room with a gun to their head does not dignify the institution and the organisation in any way," Paulo Guerrinha, a reporter for the Portuguese internet portal Sapo, told Reuters. "A situation like this cannot be devalued like it has been," he said.

World Cup Underway!!!

The opening ceremony is underway as I write, and the atmosphere is tangible even through the TV!

The stadium is Jo'burg has some empty seats - word is, there're "traffic problems" in Johannesburg. Who saw that coming?

The other striking thing about the (Canadian) coverage is that they can't let the race issue drop. (How is it in other areas?) 20 years after Apartheid it seems that's all foreigners know about the country. How sad. When the SWC was held in Korea/Japan I don't recall them talking about the Korean War or World War II. In 2006, in Germany, I'm not sure how many times they mentioned that country's, er, troubled history.

One hopes at least that when the tournament is over, people will remember the country for something else. And let's hope that something is not 'crime'.

*UPDATE*

South Africa managed not to embarrass themselves, in fact they did quite well with a 1-1 draw against Mexico in the opening game. And, if truth be told, they deserved to win.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

No evidence Terre'Blanche was murdered: Defence



This is one of those rare occasions that I have to resort to the K word. Yip, typical kaffir logic. Oops...

What a rubbish defence. Really irresponsible. This "moegoe" Moroko, should be fired, a defence like this is never going to stand. Not even in Azania....

There was no direct evidence that former AWB leader Eugene Terre’Blanche was murdered, the Ventersdorp Magistrate’s court heard.

In his closing argument for the bail application of Chris Mahlangu, defence lawyer Puna Moroko said that there was no direct evidence to indicate exactly what happened on the day Terre’Blanche died.

He said it was based only on suspicion.

Moroko submitted that Mahlangu’s version of events was that he acted in self-defence.

He said on paper the state’s case looked very strong but on the cross examination it had proved to be very weak. There was no robbery with aggravating circumstances and was simply theft of a cell phone at most.

Moroko said that once the trial proceeds he will move that the charges be reduced from premeditated murder to self-defence.

Mahlangu and a 15-year-old youth are accused of murdering Terre’Blanche in his bedroom on his farm outside Ventersdorp, in the North West, on Easter Sunday.

Earlier on Thursday the court heard that Terre’Blanche had driven Mahlangu and the youth to a liquor store where they bought a bottle of vodka and about 30 bottles of cider.

Moroko said the amount of alcohol given to them could “quench the thirst of everyone in this court”.

He said it was unclear if the alcohol had affected his client’s mental capacity as no examination was carried out on them.

The case against the accused was arguable and the purpose of bail was not to mete out punishment,” said Moroko.

Moroko said that bail should be granted to his client because he was a South African citizen, and not a Zimbabwean as reported.

He submitted that Mahlangu had applied for a South African identity book several times but was always told to come back.

“It’s not his fault he does not have one... if you are illegal they arrest you there and then. My client was never arrested,” said Moroko.

Dumb Criminal of the Week

He worked at a Cape Town supermarket for three years but that didn't stop a thief from getting caught stealing on camera.

He thought he would outsmart his boss by switching off the surveillance camera's monitor before raiding the shop.

But he had no idea the camera was recording his every move as he walked around the Grassy Park shop.

The owner says footage allegedly shows Watson Sebastian Gomanjira entering his office on Monday afternoon, then moving to the front tills where the cameras clearly catch him red-handed.

The owner of the shop wishes to remain anonymous, but says the employee let himself in with a key.

"We always lock up for lunch from 1pm to 2pm and on Monday I locked the place like I always do but didn't activate the alarm," he said.

"He must have made copies of the back door and my office keys to gain access.

"He came in and had the whole shop to himself and went into my office, took a large sum of money I usually deposit on Mondays, my laptop and its charger.

"Next he made his way to the tills and that's when I could see it was him.

"He struggled to open the tills and after a while he gave up and left."

The Grassy Park businessman said he was immediately suspicious of Watson when he returned to work.

"When I came back, I noticed that he was missing and I became suspicious when the back door was unlocked," he added.

"I immediately went into the office - all the money was gone.

"The monitor in my office was switched off, so he must have done this thinking it would stop the camera from recording.

"This is the same guy I've employed for three years and had trusted," he said.

Police spokesman Ian Leibowitz said they would use the footage to look for Gomanjira.

"A burglary case has been opened," he said. - Daily Voice

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Off Topic: Religion and Multiculturalism

The young son of a family I know told me about the Indian kids in his school carrying knives; young Sikhs are allowed to carry their Kirpans to school in Canada. This awoke a hazy memory from long ago, where I was sure I had read that the kirpan had long since been replaced by a 'symbolic' knife in the form of a replica worn in place of the traditional weapon.

Sure enough, after some quick research, it emerged that this is indeed the case. While the kirpan is intended as a weapon, it's supposed purpose is to defend the weak. There have, of course, been cases in Canada of murders committed with kirpans. So why aren't they rather wearing the harmless replicas instead?

The answer is Multiculturalism, whereby in the name of "tradition", some problems that were solved long ago - or should have been - have become problems once again. The kirpan is a very good example of this. It was deemed impractical by many Sikhs to carry a knife about their person, particularly in countries where this violated the law. So they substituted a representation of the knife, to remain observant to both their faith and to the law of the land.

This is how religions evolve and change. If we look to Christianity we find similar patterns. Baptism was initially performed by full immersion, indeed many churches still baptise this way. But very early on in church history - some say because of conversions in Roman prisons - sprinkling with water was adopted as a symbolic representation of baptism (which means "to immerse"). Similarly, Communion was altered from a full meal to a sip of wine and piece of bread, a tradition that very few churches, if any, have challenged.

Religious rituals and symbols change over the years, they adapt to local customs and laws, and most manage to find some accommodation. Catholics, who give First Communion to young girls and boys, are faced with allowing children to consume alcohol, which many parents have difficulty with. They are not breaking the law as they are not selling the wine to minors, but the option is available to substitute either low-alcohol wine or grape juice. Many smaller churches offer grape juice to their congregants.

The doctrine of Multiculturalism has reversed this process. Sikhs are carrying knifes to school. Muslim women - many of whom have for years adopted a subtle headscarf in place of the burqa/niqab - are beginning to don more "traditional" garb, even though it is highly impractical. Indeed, the notion of pragmatism has all but gone out the window. Many religions - except Christianity of course, to whom the idea of symbolic representation is an accepted part of our faith - are following the rules of Multiculturalism to roll back areas of progress that have formed part of their traditions.

In fact, adherents of Islam seem to advocate some traditions above others when it comes to clothing. The Muslim Brotherhood dress their women in the jilbab, which, whatever its origins, only became popular in the 1970s in one country, Egypt. Now it is worn by women from many Islamic countries, even in Britain amongst women of Pakistani origin. The famous case involving Cherie Booth, wife of Tony Blair, involved a schoolgirl who insisted it was her right to wear a jilbab instead of a school uniform. Booth (sister of lunatic antisemite Lauren) successfully argued the case for the girl wearing a costume originating in a completely different tradition of Islam from her own.

It proves the point made by Mark Steyn when he said that under Multiculturalism, we're not obligated to actually know anything about other cultures as long as we feel warm and fuzzy towards them.

Radical traditions of Islam are busily rattling around within all the other traditions, amongst which we make no distinction. Most Westerners don't know the difference, and we're happy to allow those traditions to be taken over by extremist Islam, and Multiculturalists are cheering them on from the sidelines. Radical forms of Islam are busily undoing what little concessions to practicality Muslims have made over the centuries. Now, regionally specific forms of dress are made compulsory across the Islamic world, and we don't even notice.

The general rule with these changes is that they make the adherent as distinct (and hostile) as possible to host cultures. The jilbab is the prison of choice for many Muslims because it is so provocative to Westerners, and so completely at odds with Western notions of womens' equality. They have gone out of their way to force their traditions - which are really not traditions at all - down our throats, in defiance of centuries of religious pragmatism.

What about Jews? contrast the behaviour of Jews and that of Muslims. Having lived in Europe for centuries, Jews learned to assimilate whilst maintaining their distinct ethos, and adapted to their environments. Jewish dietary requirements are adhered to without imposition on society at large. In contrast, in many parts of Europe, when it's Ramadan, you had better not get caught eating a ham sandwich in public. A Jewish child will bring a kosher meal to school. A Muslim parent will insist everyone eats halal.

Religion, having been separated from the state and thus of society at large, is now happily following the dictates of Multiculturalism, whereby the most extreme, isolationist and fanciful elements of tradition can be wheeled out in the name of diversity. The exception is, of course, Christianity. Imagine were I to cite Luke 22.36-38 as a reason to send my son to school with a sword, arguing that Jesus commanded Christian to obtain one?

Christianity is the oldest assimilationist religion in Europe, and nobody would seriously argue that those elements should be removed. The more recent religions to arrive in the Western world are the ones from which least is demanded. Even legalising (and sanitising) some form of female genital mutilation was being considered in the USA and Australia, although thankfully this proved a bridge to far for Americans (see here).

Multiculturalism is therefore not only a vehicle for the reintroduction of some of the most vile and barbaric practices of the premodern worlds from which they originate, it also actively prevents the integration of the adherents of those religions with the societies in which they are living. Furthermore, radicals and extremists amongst the latter are now free to undo centuries of assimilation and syncretism, creating a more fractious and atomised society, all in the name of "reform".

The uniformity and radicalism preached by extremist Muslims is dismissed by Western liberals as an aberration of the 'true' faith, and most hold out hope that Islam can be "reformed". But as Steyn has observed, maybe the radicalism is the reform. And he's right: Only arrogant liberals assume that Islamic reform would move in the direction liberals want it to.

Multiculturalism not only makes radical traditionalism possible. In failing to make any judgments whatsoever, we are actively encouraging the worst and most destructive elements of all religions.