Today's Big Stories

'Collins was like a son' - President Jacob Zuma

Image courtesy: GCIS

'Collins was like a son' - President Jacob Zuma

The Minister of Public Service and Administration was killed in a car crash on the N1 highway in Limpopo on Saturday night. His two protectors - Sergeant Lesiba Sekele and Sergeant Lawrence Lentsoane - were also killed. Chabane had previously been Minister of Performance Monistoring and Evaluation in the Presidency, after some time as an MEC in Limpopo. This morning, President Jacob Zuma visisted the Chabane home in Pretoria to pay tribute. EWN's Govan Whittles:

He's been celebrated here in Polokwane, especially by the ANC's regional structure here, as you can imagine. An official wreath-laying ceremony is set for the next hour. A lot of ordinary people are also celebrating him and his artistic side, saying he was a very humble man. (On details of the accident) the car's roof was completely ripped off, and the truck had tried to make a u-turn on an open road. Authorities have said they are having issues with un-roadworthy trucks in the area and roads towards Limpopo. Police are confirming whether or not the driver had been using alcohol and he was found to have had 0,08% alcohol in his system after his body was tested after the accident, with the legal limit being 0,02%.

ANC MP, Jerome Maake:

(On when he first met Chabane) it was in 1980, he was a class ahead of me at the University of the North. He was very militant and politically active. We'd mostly talk politics or sing freedom songs. We were a unit of 7 students who went into exile; we left early 1980; we were in varsity for three months and then we left into exile. There was no question of being afraid or not; you knew what you would be facing when you left the country. He was a very brave young man.

The return of the #SpyTapes saga

In the High Court in Pretoria was an application by the DA for the court to hear its application for a review of the decision to withdraw corruption charges against President Jacob Zuma. In 2009, then NPA Acting Head, Advocate Mokotedi Mpshe withdrew the charges after recordings known as the 'Zuma spy tapes' emerged. Mpshe said that the tapes showed that NPA officials had behaved improperly in relation to the case. EWN's Gia Nicolaides:

Today was all about setting a timeline; President Jacob Zuma has not filed his answering affidavit. The DA has seeked a timeline to get the NPA to file the affidavit that the President must have answered by the 10th of June. The DA initially wanted an expedited date, but the judge doesn't see why they should get an expedited date, but they are welcome to pursue an expedited date in a court of law. They are hoping to have the case heard some time before the end of the year, hoping that the NPA will set aside their 2009 decision to drop the charges against President Zuma.

The Jozi traffic light Blues

This morning saw the distribution of a multimedia report by EWN this morning about traffic lights in Joburg and why they’re not working so often. JRA's head of mobility and freight, Darryll Thomas:

There's various reasons why signals can be out, mainly three: (1) when there's problems with the electronic signal components, which can take about 24 hours to fix (2) when the traffic signals are vandalised via cable theft, which can take about 3 days to fix (3) when there's a power fault due to City Power issues, where some of the robots are reliant upon Eskom and others are reliant upon City Power.

Flabba case hears of bail

The case of slain hip-hop artist Nkululeko 'Flabba' Habedi has taken a turn, where his murder-accused 26-year-old girlfriend Sindiswa Manqele has appeared at the Alexandra Magistrates Court. EWN's Masego Rahlaga:

The state started off arguing that Manqele tried to commit suicide last week. The magistrate said that since her arrest last week, she didn't try to harm herself, so she therefore isn't a potential harm to herself. The magistrate also said she would have to report to the Midrand Magistrate Court twice a week and her bail was granted on those grounds at R10 000.

JHB City bylaws tightening over billboards

The City of Joburg says it’s now tightened up its by-laws in a bid to stop people advertising illegally through outdoor billboards. Manager for Outdoor Advertising at the City of Joburg,Jack Sekgobela:

You'll appreciate we are under a really tight situation. Increasingly, we see the erection of illegal advertising signs by some companies. The turnaround strategy was introduced to address some of the by-laws which weren't working in our favour. We have no choice but to come up with new stringent measures to tighten up the situation because it is really getting out of hand. If you own the property and you want to run a business and put up a sign, you would need to get an 'own premise sign' - there's a clause that deals with that. If on the other hand, someone approaches you and they want to advertise on your property, then a 'third party sign' is needed and they'd have to lodge a full application that involves by-laws and processes. There are also exemptions for signs that are there for a good cause, but they have to compliant as well.

MPs and police in Parliament

In the Western Cape High Court, the DA is asking a judge to change part of an act regulating Parliament to prevent police from entering the National Assembly and removing MPs. The case comes after men in white shirts and black trousers forcibly removed Economic Freedom Fighter MPs from the House during the State of the Nation Address. EWN's Rahima Essop:

The DA is challenging legislation that essentially empowers the Speaker to have non-compliant MPs removed by security services from Parliament. What's under contention is Section 11 of the Powers and Privileges Act. They say that Sections 58 and 71 protect the Freedom of Speech of MPs, and are thus also inconsistent with Section 11 of the Act. The definition of the word 'disturbance' as it appears in the Act is what is being challenged.

Matric matters: woeful forecasting

A report this morning is that only one out of every ten Grade 1 learners is expected to pass matric with 50% or more when they get to matric. The Director of the Centre for Education Practice Research at the University of Johannesburg's Institute for Childhood Education, Professor Elizabeth Henning:

I can't make judgements about where we go wrong in our teaching. We lay a lot of emphasis on what goes wrong later on in school; the emphasis should be at the foundation phases. We have been saying this for the last five years - the lack of emphasis on Early Childhood Education. We also don't nearly produce enough Foundation Phase teachers who can teach children in their mother tongue.

China to review one-child policy

There now appear to be more moves to relax the one-child policy with some experts even suggesting it should be mandatory to have two children. Asia Correspondent, John Bailey:

The policy has really impacted China, resulting in a number of demographic issues including an ageing labour force. It does seem that the government wants to change the policy, because China might become uncompetitive because there wouldn't be many people to do work. In Beijing alone, only 30 000 couples applied to have a second child; but many people say it's too costly to have more than one child, and this has resulted in many spoilt children.

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