Articles


Eskom to distribute electricity, handle billing in Maluti-a-Phofung

Eskom to distribute electricity, handle billing in Maluti-a-Phofung

Wednesday 02 June 2021 The High Court in Pretoria is expected to grant a final order next week that will mandate Eskom to act as an agent for the struggling Maluti-a-Phofung municipality in Harrismith and execute electricity distribution on its behalf. Eskom has confirmed that this will constitute the first of several so-called active partnership agreements with struggling municipalities that includes “a full suite of active partnering which includes distribution, reticulation and revenue management services. While commentators have warned against numerous stumbling blocks in municipal legislation, the 16 applicants – including Afgri Milling, the Harrismith Business Forum, Nestlé South Africa, Nouwens Carpets, and Busamed Harrismith Private Hospital – based their arguments on constitutional grounds that allow the court to find a just and equitable remedy that cuts through other legislation. Maluti-a-Phofung is one of several municipalities which together owed Eskom R35.3 billion at the end of March, and large power users have already been paying their electricity bills directly into Eskom’s account for some time following an earlier court order. The latest agreement was supported in court by energy regulator Nersa, and the Minister of Finance and Free State MEC for Finance have been ordered to appear in court on June 8. They will be required to indicate whether the provision in the agreement that the municipal electricity revenue will be paid directly into Eskom’s bank account is a reason not to make the court’s earlier order final. Commentators earlier pointed out that municipal legislation requires that all municipal revenue be paid into the municipality’s principal bank account. Attorney MC Botha of Joubert Galpin Searle, who represents the applicants, says intense engagements are ongoing to address the concerns and establish a lawful contractual framework for Eskom to provide the service on behalf of Maluti-a-Phofung.

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Unemployment figures to be released

Unemployment figures to be released

Tuesday 01 June 2021 Predictions are not on the positive side of the spectrum with some economists expecting that the country’s already disheartening unemployment figures will rise. In February, South Africa’s unemployment rate was revealed to be 32.5% - the highest it’s ever been on the back of the Coronavirus pandemic. The figures will be unveiled at 11:00 am. Whilst the debate on media platforms suggest that the number of unemployed graduates is high, Tashmia Ismail, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Youth Employment Service (YES), previously told the Business Hour that university graduates only constitute a mere 8% of the overall unemployment rate in South Africa. Ismail says South Africans without a matric certificate or those with only a matric are in fact the most unemployed in the country - roughly 56% - and it is them that we need to focus on. YES is a joint national initiative between business, government and labour that aims to address the youth unemployment crisis in South Africa by providing 12-month quality work experiences to unemployed youth. Ismail encourages business owners to not just automatically hire university graduates, but rather take a risk, on that which is unexpected. The Central South African region, specifically the Free State and the Northern Cape have in previous surveys been revealed to have some of the highest youth unemployment figures in the country.

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Agreement for workplace vaccination

Agreement for workplace vaccination

Tuesday 01 June 2021 Business, labour and government have agreed on a policy that will see employees being vaccinated at work. The agreement was reached at the National Economic Development and Labour Council. Employers will encourage workers to be inoculated and will offer them paid time off to do so. But workers cannot be dismissed for declining to get vaccinated. Government has set a target of vaccinating an estimated 5.5-million South Africans aged 60 and above under phase two. Business for South Africa says about 110 private and 210 public sites are planned to be online this week.

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Pan-African Parliament expected to elect new leadership on Tuesday

Tuesday 01 June 2021 The Pan-African Parliament (PAP) in Midrand, Johannesburg, is expected to vote for new leadership on Tuesday, amid high tensions over the elective process. Some members of the PAP resorted to violence on Monday as frustrations grew over whether the Presidency should be on a rotational basis or via the current direct ballot box. The southern caucus is leading the call to for rotation while the east and west caucuses heavily oppose the idea. On Monday, chaos erupted in the chamber with members laying hands on each.

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Aforika Borwa e kgutlela mokgatleng wa bobedi waho kginwa ha metsamao  emeng ya batho

Aforika Borwa e kgutlela mokgatleng wa bobedi waho kginwa ha metsamao emeng ya batho

Mon 31 May 2021 Aforika Borwa e tsoha e kene mokgatlelong wa bobedi wa mohato waho kginwa ha tse ding tsa ditshebeletso le metsamao ya batho ka lebaka la Covid-19. Ha mopresidente ane a tshetleha puo maobane, O hlalositse ha lebaka laho eketseha ha ditshwaetso tse ntjha tsa Covid-19 ho kentswe tshebetsong metjha e matlafetseng e kenyelletsang ya hore hose hotla dumellwa batho ba 100 dibakeng tse kwalehileng ka hara meaho, ha ba 250 dibakeng tse kantle le palo ya batho mafung eseng e dumelletswe ke 100 fela. Mopresidente Ramaphosa o boetse are ke tlolo ya molao hose kenye semonkwana, Ke boikarabelo ba baokamedi le beng ba melao ya setjhaba, mabenkele, diresturente, dibese le ditekesi ho netefatsa hore batho dibakeng tseo le dikoloing ba rwala dimonkwana le hore mehato ya ho se atomelane eya latelwa.

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SA Restaurants Association satisfied with new lockdown restrictions

SA Restaurants Association satisfied with new lockdown restrictions

Monday 31 May 2021 The Restaurants Association of South Africa (RASA) says they are satisfied that government is supporting the continued business operations by the restaurants’ industry. This after President Cyril Ramaphosa put the country on adjusted Level 2 citing a concern about the increase in coronavirus cases. The hours of curfew will start at 23:00pm and end at 04:00am. The association’s CEO Wendy Alberts says they were concerned that there would be further restrictions on restaurants. “It is critical to recognise that the industry is certainly committed to playing our part as we channel to the different levels of lockdown. It is imperative that we keep our patrons, staff, restaurants and restaurants businesses safe. It’s critical that our businesses are not interrupted abruptly and cause further economic loss for jobs,” says Alberts

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Questions mount over mysterious death of DRC family in Free State

Monday 31 May 2021 Free State police spokesperson, Thandi Mbambo, said there are no new developments in the case as the police are still awaiting post-mortem results on the family who hail from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The family was discovered on Wednesday (26 May) after an employee of a hardware store went to Thaba Nchu police station to report that he had not seen his employer for roughly 10 days. When police went to check in on the family at their home, they discovered the decomposing bodies of the family members estimated to be between the ages of 3 and 44 years old. According to Mbambo, the family had no physical injuries but their bodies were found bloated. The family consisted of an adult man and woman estimated to be 44 and 38 years old respectively. There were four children - two boys and two girls - whose ages are believed to range from 3 to 11 years old.

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LESEA LEA TIMELA KA MORA HORE A OTLWE KE MMAE

LESEA LEA TIMELA KA MORA HORE A OTLWE KE MMAE

Monday 31 May 2021 Lefapha la ntshetsopele ya setjhaba le seollotse ketsahalo e ho yona mosadi ya dilemong tse 42 a otlileng lesea la hae le dikgwedi tse 11 ha morao le timeletseng le Ha-Lambani kantlenyana ho Thohoyandou Limpopo. Sena ke nakong ena eo naha e tshwayang beke ya tshireletso ya bana. Sepolesa sere baahi bai le ba pholosa lesea leo hotswa ho mma lona bale isa cliniking e haufi moo le timeletseng, Mme wa lesea leo o tshwerwe. Mmuedi wa lefapha la ntshetsopele ya setjhaba Witness Tiva ore lefapha le bohloko keho timela ha lesea leo, ore seba tshwenyana ke hore ketsahalo ena e etsahetse ka nako eo ba loketseng ho bontsha lerato le kananelo baneng. Letona o etsa kgweletso ho batswadi banang le mathata le bana kapa dikamanong tsa bona hose etse ketso tsa dikgoka empa ba kopane le basebeletsi ba setjhaba hore bakene dipakeng. Ore Maafrika Borwa a lokela ho sebedisa beke ya tshireletso ya bana ho itekola leho hlokomela bana

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Free State municipal infights 'cause for concern'

Wednesday 26 May 2021 According to the Head of the Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) Department, Mokete Duma, the state of Tswelopele as well as Setsoto Local Municipalities - where mayors have been shown the door - is concerning. He says it is a cause for concern that there seem to be growing leadership and governance challenges at these municipalities. Answering questions over the role of Cogta in local government before the Public Accounts and Finance Committee on Tuesday, Duma said some of the challenges plaguing municipalities need to be resolved by their council, and not the department as it only oversees them. He said the Setsoto Municipality, where the mayor has recently been kicked to the curb and as a result leading to the municipality's failure to pass a draft budget, is a clear example of how political fights in council affect the operation of municipalities. During a virtual committee sitting, Duma confirmed the department is intervening in these municipalities as well as in many others where there are similar fights. Following recent Mangaung protests and looming unrests in Matjhabeng.

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Court orders #Mugabe's body to be exhumed

Court orders #Mugabe's body to be exhumed

Wednesday 26 May 2021 A traditional court in Zimbabwe has ordered former First Lady Grace Mugabe to exhume the body of her late husband Robert Mugabe. The court says Mugabe must be reburied at the Heroes Acre in Harare. Grace Mugabe is also instructed to pay five cattle and two goats for improperly burying her husband. Mugabe died in 2019 at the age of 95 and was buried in the courtyard of his home in Kutama, 90 kilometres west of the capital Harare.

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Strong police presence outside Pietermaritzburg High Court ahead of Zuma’s trial

Wednesday 26 May 2021 There is a strong police presence outside the Pietermaritzburg High Court ahead of the fraud and corruption trial of former President Jacob Zuma on Wednesday. Zuma and French arms company, Thales, are facing fraud, corruption, racketeering and money laundering charges in connection with the 1999 multi-billion rand arms deal. Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association spokesperson Carl Niehaus and Zuma’s son Edward have already arrived. But, organisers of groups supporting the former President say they are disappointed with the behaviour demonstrated by some ANC supporters during last week’s court appearance. Bishop Vusi Dube says such behaviour is regrettable, “We are very concerned, I think one of the highlights of that moment of Boeing was what Msholozi said when he stood up. He was very explicit and very clear that when people are coming here they must come with the heart of supporting his program, they must not come here with any political motive.” He adds: “What is important is that the people who are going to be coming here will be led religiously. Our programme is a religious programme. We are going to make sure that people who are coming here are orderly and they don’t do this thing of putting dirty linen of the ANC in front of the people and in fact of the world.”

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High probability of load shedding today, says Eskom

High probability of load shedding today, says Eskom

Wednesday 26 May 2021 Eskom said the power system remained under severe pressure with a high probability of load shedding on Wednesday. The embattled power utility is appealing to the public to reduce their electricity consumption. It said the shortage of generation capacity persisted, caused by breakdowns in generation units and delays in others returning to service. Eskom said if any further breakdowns occurred, it would be forced to implement load shedding at short notice. Spokesperson Sikonathi Mantshantsha said: “With the assistance of the people of South Africa, Eskom was able to avoid load shedding last night. Eskom would again like to appeal to the public to help the country get through these constraints by reduce their electricity usage.”

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