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Hundreds of Mourners Show up to Pay Last Respects to Nathaniel Julies

Hundreds of mourners showed up in the Eldorado Park community to pay their last respects to Nathaniel Julies. 

Community members were lining the streets as the funeral procession passed by. Many were cheering “Justice for Nathaniel”, a reminder that this community is united in the campaign to get justice for the 16-year-old Nathaniel who was shot dead while eating a biscuit, allegedly by SAPS officers.

Picture: Aldrin Miller

Keynote speaker, Gayton McKenzie, businessman and leader of the Patriotic Alliance told mourners that no other child’s death would have had the same impact on the Coloured community. McKenzie said had it been any other child the gangster label would have stuck, but it was impossible to do so with Nathaniel.

McKenzie addressed Nathaniel’s mother saying, “It had to be your child. There could have been nobody else. I am sorry that your child had to die for the coloured nation to rise,”.

According to IOL, members of the ANC, EFF and various other political and civil society organisations also attended the funeral service.

Adapt IT CEO takes leave of absence amid allegations of assault

Picture: Twitter, @AdaptIT
Following allegations of serious armed assault against Adapt IT Chief Executive Officer, Sbu Shabalala, shares in the JSE listed company has dropped by about 13% on Monday 10 May. 

The Sunday Times reported that serious allegations of armed assault have been made against Shabalala by his estranged wife, Neo. According to the report, Shabalala is accused of ordering armed men to attack Neo’s partner, who has been hospitalised and is in critical condition.

Shabalala released a statement on Tuesday 11 May in which he condemns the allegations made against him. In his statement, he said he wishes to clarify his decision to take leave in context to the allegations made. The statement reads:

“I would like to clarify my leave in context to the allegations made.

“I have decided to take extended leave.

“The last five months have been some of the most difficult of my life. After more than 15 years of the relentless work of building a JSE-listed entity, I need a little respite. Time for rest and self-care while I deal with personal battles.

“I’ve had family tragedies, at a time when the business is going through its most important business lifecycle.

“In the midst of this, I am now being accused of violent and uncharacteristic behaviour, in what is clearly an unrelated attack. I have been caught in the crossfire.

“This has taken a toll on my well being. My instinct is to soldier on. However, those closest to me, who care for me, have advised that I take time out for self and family care. I listened. Hence my decision to take leave.

“My trust in the competence and excellence of our management team made the decision somewhat easier.

“The allegations against me are without merit. The best way to deal with them is through the judicial system. This is not only to clear my name of wrongdoing but to also bring those who are using my proximity to the situation to serve their own ends. This campaign is cold-hearted and must be condemned.

“Taking time to regroup is an essential part of good leadership and there is never a perfect time.

“I hope this clarifies my position as I will not be engaging these issues until I have resolved the dispute.

“Please respect both my personal and family’s privacy as we take much needed time out.”

Adapt IT has confirmed that Tiffany Dunsdon will assume the role of interim CEO while Tony Vicente has been appointed as an Executive Director.

Lambert’s Bay Mother Killed on Mother’s Day

Picture: Pixabay.com
While many celebrated Mother’s Day on Sunday with beautiful luncheons and heartfelt messages, four children in Lambert’s Bay lost their mother after their father fatally stabbed her. 

Liezel Toontjies, 28, was a mother of four children all between the ages of 16 and 1 years old. According to reports, Toontjies and her boyfriend, who is also the father of her children, got into an argument on Sunday, he grabbed her by the arm and allegedly stabbed her. She succumbed to her wounds on the scene.

Reports say the man, who is in his 30s, is expected to appear in court for murder.

Poultry farm in Worcester under quarantine after Bird Flu outbreak

According to reports, bird flu has been detected at a farm in Worcester, the affected farm has been placed under quarantine and a process of culling the affected chickens have begun. 

Bird flu, also known as, Avian influenza, is a viral respiratory disease of birds. It can be spread by direct contact between healthy and infected birds or through indirect contact with contaminated equipment or other materials.

The virus is commonly present in the faeces of infected birds and discharges from their noses, mouth and eyes.

The Western Cape provincial government has asked all farmers and poultry producers to be vigilant in their biosecurity measures to prevent the spread of the virus which could have a very negative impact on South Africa’s poultry economy.

The recent Bird Flu outbreak was first detected in Gauteng in April where at least two farms in the East Rand were affected.

Sick or dead birds – both wild birds and poultry – can be reported to Chief State Veterinarian, Dr. Lesley van Helden on 021 808 5017 or Lesleyvh@elsenburg.com.

Devastated parents want answers after their daughter fell to her death in China

24-year-old Kgothatso Mdunana Picture: Supplied
According to reports, South African student, Kgothatso Mdunana, died when she fell out of the window of her friend’s apartment on the 13th floor in the Hangzhou province of China on Friday, 30 April. 

Mdunana had been in China studying Civil Engineering at the Shandong University. She would have completed her studies this year and was excited to start her career in the UK.

According to reports, the 24-year-old student’s roommate, Princess, told her parents that she had gone to the Hangzhou province to meet up with a friend who none of her other friends there knew. Hangzhou is approximately 15hrs away from Shandong where Mdunana lived.

Her father, Pfarelo Mphamphuli, told EWN: “No one knew about this trip. All we know is that the police took this person in for questioning. No other information why they are questioning him or her about. All they said is this was an accident,”.

He said some of Kgothatso’s friends had offered to travel to Hangzhou to help fill in the missing pieces.

Mdunana’s family had reportedly not seen her in three years. She had been one of the South Africans who were offered a repatriation flight home, however, she decided to stay in China and take up teaching English.

Her family are now raising funds to bring her body home, the cost of which is almost R300 000.

Mphampuli shared with EWN that he last spoke to his daughter 2 days before she disappeared and his last text to her was “I love you too”

To donate to the fundraiser follow the link: Bring Kgothatso Home 

Watch: DA provincial leader Solly Msimanga assaulted

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Gauteng earlier today released a statement in which it praised the SAPS for their swift response after the party’s provincial leader, Solly Msimanga, was physically assaulted.

Msimanga’s assailant can be heard in a video saying Msimanga owes him money. However, the man, who has now been arrested, has since made a public apology and said that Msimanga does not owe him any money.

The DA explained, “In a video on social media, Mr Msimanga can be seen bleeding from the mouth and head, while being accused by the assailant of being a thief and owing money. Mr Msimanga categorically asserts that he owes no one any such money and will consider laying charges against the assailant.”

Mr Msimanga was reportedly on a social visit to his cousin in Benoni when the assailant, a business partner of the cousin, attacked Mr Msimanga’s family member.

The DA said it condemns the vicious and criminal attack on its Provincial Leader, saying: “No one has the right to take the law into their own hands, and compromise the rights of others, as what occurred today. Violence is definitely not the answer.”

Fritz calls for investigation by Ombudsman after rape victim told to investigate her own complaints

Facebook @MinisterAlbertFritz
On Wednesday Minister of Community Safety in the Western Cape, Albert Fritz, called for an urgent investigation by the Police Ombudsman into a report that a rape-survivor was told by SAPS officers to investigate her own complaints when she tried to report the case at the Khayelitsha Site B Police Station.

According to the report, the woman arrived at SAPS in Khayelitsha Site B the day after she was allegedly assaulted and raped. While taking her statement the attending SAPS officers apparently told her that she “did not look like someone who had been through a traumatic experience” and that she “looked too relaxed”. The SAPS official also told the victim and her friend that they should try to “trap the suspect” and attempt to establish his whereabouts so that the SAPS could arrest him. The victim said her friend didn’t want to do this because the suspect is a dangerous man.

Minister Fritz said, “This kind of thing is happening too often. We cannot have a situation where victims of gender-based violence are treated with such disdain and disrespect by the very officers of the law that are supposed to offer protection. This incident is one of the reasons why the majority of rape victims don’t report rape cases, and this needs to end.”

“While we have already asked the Western Cape Police Ombudsman to systemically investigate the way in which gender-based violence cases are handled when reported at SAPS stations, I am also requesting the Ombudsman to investigate this particular case as a matter of urgency.”

Minister Fritz continued, “My request for this investigation to be expedited by the Ombudsman is based on the need to hold the SAPS officials in question accountable. And, if the investigation finds the allegations to be true, I will then call for disciplinary proceedings to be instituted against the said officers.”

Minister Fritz concluded, “as a Minister in this provincial government, I want to emphasise that we have zero tolerance for any forms of gender-based violence and we will act against all instances where it shows itself.”

SASSA confirms termination of R350 Covid-19 relief fund

Picture: Twitter, @OfficialSASSA
SASSA confirms that the R350 Covid-19 social relief of distress grant will come to an end on Friday 30 April. 

SASSA released a statement on Thursday saying the “R350 grant” would come to an end on Friday.

The organisation said that no new applications would be accepted, however, those applicants who have been approved but have not received the money can still expect payment.

 

It said those who had their applications declined between February and April this year could appeal their decision by lodging an appeal on the website – https://SRD.sassa.gov.za.

“If the appeal is not lodged, the declined application will not be reconsidered. The appeal period closes on 31 May 2021. No appeals will be accepted after this date,”.

Many organisations such as Black Sash and #PayTheGrants have criticised this decision, the latter said it is “vehemently opposed” to it.

While the #PayTheGrants movement has rallied around the country to protest the decision, many South Africans also took to Twitter to express concern.

Alleged underworld boss, Nafiz Modack, arrested in Kinnear murder case

Picture: Supplied
On Thursday afternoon Police arrested alleged underworld boss, Nafiz Modack, and three other suspects in connection with the murder of Anti-Gang Unit detective Charl Kinnear.

According to reports, the men were spotted at Century View in Milnerton by the task team on the case. The men reportedly fled when they were approached, a car chase ensued and they were apprehended in Sable road. The task team were executing six warrants of arrest for cases of the attempted murder of Adv William Booth, gang-related extortion, kidnapping and intimidation.

Two vehicles were reportedly searched during the arrest and unlicensed firearms were found in both vehicles.

Police Minister, Bheki Cele.” This breakthrough must be congratulated more so because we have always maintained that the murder of Lt Col Kinnear was no random act but a callous act that’s part of a conspiracy that is being exposed by the work of the police. We also expect more arrests to follow.”

The men will appear in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Monday 3 May.

Search for escaped prisoners in Pietermaritzburg continues

Picture: Supplied
According to reports on Thursday morning, KZN police confirmed that they were still looking for 18 awaiting-trial prisoners who escaped from police custody in Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday.

The prisoners were being transported to the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court at around 8 am when the road was reportedly blocked by 5 heavily armed men in a double cab bakkie. The men instructed police officers to open the rear door of the truck.

According to Brigadier Jay Naicker, 31 of the 45 prisoners managed to escape, many have been re-arrested, however, 18 of the escapees are still at large.

Naicker said the suspects were facing charges relating to various crimes including murder and armed robbery.

Local Ward councillor for Pietermaritzburg, Ross Strachan, told reporters that he is suspicious of the incident and how easily the prisoners could escape.

Speaking to EWN, Strachan said: “I’d like to know if there was a convoy that managed to follow and be in front of this vehicle to ensure the safety of community members and residents in that area and through town to the High Court. Until those questions are answered, I want to plea to community residents to keep themselves safe while these prisoners are on the loose.”

Strachan asked for an investigation into possible negligence by the SAPS.

DA Provincial leader, Bonginkosi Madikizela, has resigned

Picture: Twitter, @MadikizelaBongz
The DA’s provincial leader of the Western Cape, Bonginkosi Madikizela, has resigned from his position as the regional party leader and the Western Cape cabinet.

His resignation comes after he had been suspended for lying about his B.Com qualification. Madikizela admitted that he had not completed his degree but said that it had not been a requirement for the job. The DA said that an investigation into the allegations had been launched.

Madikizela lead the province for more than three years. Announcing the resignation, Premier Alan Winde said: “I believe that his decision under the circumstances was the right and honourable thing to do. Mr Madikizela has worked hard in both the Human Settlements and Transport & Public Works portfolios, and I wish to thank him for the valuable contribution he has made to delivering progress in our province over the years.”

An interim leader will be elected at the provincial council in May. Until then, Albert Fritz will continue as the acting provincial leader and Tertius Simmers will be the acting MEC of Transport and Public Works until further notice.