Category Archives: Current Affairs

Illegal abortions still high in SA

ABO-ARTICLEA 17-year old girl died on Thursday at Frere hospital in East London after nurses tried to remove a foetus from her womb. The girl had had a blotched termination of pregnancy after using a ‘backstreet’ abortion clinic.

Nurse Lefa, who works at the Women’s clinic and gynaecology unit, expressed how the girl was found. “She came to us at 6 o’ clock in the morning trying to hide a blotch of blood on her pants which was getting worse,” said Lefa. “When we placed her on a bed, she fainted.

Lefa said that the girl had lost a lot of blood because of a sceptic wound in her uterus which occurred from an infection. It was reported that she was given abortion inducing pills and thereafter, attempted to pull the foetus on her own the night before she went to the clinic.

It is unfortunate that the girl Lefa and her staff assisted is not the only one who has died due to unsafe pregnancy terminations. Since South Africa legalised abortion 1996 with the Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act, abortion-related deaths have decreased by 90%. However, the Act has not been implemented to decrease or remove the presence and use of illegal abortionists.

Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini said, “Where abortion is permitted on broad legal grounds, it is generally safe and where it is highly restricted, it is typically safe.” Minister Dlamini was addressing delegates in Boksburg at an Ipas conference.

A study in 2005 looked at women’s reasons for going to illegal providers, which included not knowing where to access safe or free abortions, stigma from their communities, judgemental staff and concerns over confidentiality and cost. Only about 53% of the public health facilities to provide safe abortions are operational currently.

Most state-funded hospitals offer abortions in less than 13 weeks into a woman’s pregnancy. Between 13-20 weeks (3 to 5 months) a woman may have an abortion under certain conditions where: her physical, mental health is at stake, her baby may have physical or mental abnormalities and if the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest; or when she is of the opinion that her economic or social situation is enough to terminate the pregnancy.

Several females from the ages of 12 to 40 terminate their pregnancies, some falling victim to the “same day, pain-free, quick” street post abortionists. These illegal operations hand out medical abortion pills indiscriminately, placing second-trimester women at a risk of death. Most botched abortions include severe bleeding, uterine damage, tearing of the cervix, severe damage to the genitals and abdomen, internal infection of the abdomen and blood poisoning.

By Siphosethu Jim


Jub Jub and co-accused ruling overturned

untitledMolemo ‘Jub Jub’ Maarohanyye and his co-accused Themba Tshabalala have had their ruling overturned.

News 24 reports that in December 2012, Magistrate Brian Nemavhidi sentenced Maarohanyye and Tshabalala each to 27 years in prison in total in the Protea Magistrate’s Court in Soweto.

The murder convictions were replaced with convictions of culpable homicide and the 20-year sentences for murder were replaced by prison terms of eight years, with two of those suspended. They will be given credit for time already served.

According to Business Day Live in June, the pair’s second appeal revolved around the disgraced gospel star claiming the reason why his conviction should be altered is because he wasn’t in control of his faculties because he was high.

Maarohanye and Tshabalala, were found guilty on four counts of murder after ploughing into a group of pedestrians travelling through Protea Glen four years ago, killing four schoolchildren.

News24 reported that at the time of the appeal, Maarohanye’s lawyer, Willie Vermeulen, argued that his client had been convicted of murder; dolus eventualis. This means that the court found Maarohanye and Tshabalala had an understanding of the damage they could cause by their behaviour, and therefore had indirect intention to kill.

“Those kids left home in the morning to go to school to better their lives and the lives of their families. As they were upstanding citizens, they did not go to town. They decided to go straight home. They did not arrive home that day,” Mr Nemavhidi told the accused men.

However, Vermeulen insisted that because of his client’s use of drugs on the day of the race, the dolus eventualis argument no longer stood.

Judge George Maluleke and his team of appeal judges seemed to agree with this argument, saying the dolus eventualis charges could not stand.

He altered the four counts of murder to four counts of culpable homicide and set aside the driving under the influence and attempted murder charges. He sentenced the pair to 10 years, with two years suspended, and insisted that the sentence be back dated to when the pair were originally sentenced in October 2012.

After the new sentence was handed down there was much public outcry with social networks going abuzz. People were discussing whether the ruling the previous week of Oscar Pistorius would affect any other cases that had already been concluded.

As the South African justice system loses credibility in the eyes of the public eyes now shift to the Dewani case.

by Siyanda Cingco

The Chilli Boys stun Orlando Pirates in Port Elizabeth

ef21beaa237de8efff1baf0d5defa166Chippa United put out a brave performance and defeated South African football heavy weight’s Orlando Pirates at the Nelson Mandela stadium in Port Elizabeth on the 27th of September 2014.

The Port Elizabeth community has been starved of Premier Soccer League football for years, since the days of Bay United. The locals would have been very proud of their new adopted local team Chippa United performance against Orlando Pirates, as they won the match 1-0, from an early goal from their striker David Zulu.

Orlando Pirates came into this encounter looking to bounce back from their previous weekend’s MTN8 final defeat to their bitter rivals, Kaizer Chiefs. That defeat in the final made head coach Vladimir Vermezovic to make several changes to the team that lost to Kaizer Chiefs, with Ntsikelelo Nyauza, Thabo Qalinge and Mpho Makola coming in for Happy Jele, Sifiso Myeni and Issa Saar respectively. The Buccaneers were eager to beat Chippa United for the first time, while the Chilli Boys came into this clash looking to give Roger Sikhakhane his second successive victory as their head coach, since the departure of former coach Kostadin Papic.

The visitors attacked their opponents from the beginning of the match, with Mpho Makola coming close as early as in the second minute from a corner- kick; however, Makola’s header struck the framework with Mbongeni Mzimela well beaten before Chippa United defenders recovered to clear the ball away from the danger area. Four minutes later, the home side took the lead against the run of play, from a counter attack with striker David Zulu finding himself in space behind the Pirates defence after dribbling past a couple of the Orlando Pirates defenders, before slotting a well-timed and directed shot past Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Senzo Meyiwa with his left foot in the bottom corner.

Chippa United did well to give their opponents no space in front of their own goalkeeper, with their big and physically stronger defenders forcing Orlando Pirates to take shots from long range. Thandani Ntshumayelo tested Mzimela from distance in the 26th minute, only for the former AmaZulu goalkeeper to gather the shot easily. Mpho Makola had a chance to beat Mzimela from a free-kick, but the midfielder missed the target, with his attempt going to the right hand side of Mzimela’s goal. Chippa United held on to their 1-0 lead going into the break, as they kept Pirates at bay in the first 45 minutes.

Orland Pirates coach Vladimir Vermezovic saw that the tactics he had used in the first half didn’t work and that he needed a new plan to break down the tight defense of the home team. He made two changes towards the hour-mark, introducing both Lehlohonolo Majoro and Sifiso Myeni for Mpho Makola and Thabo Qalinge respectively. Pirates threatened to score but they were still unable to break down Chippa United’s defence, let alone test Mzimela, who was hardly tested in the entire game as Pirates had a single shot on target in the second half through substitute Sifiso Myeni, despite dominating possession, especially in the last 20 minutes of the game. The Soweto giants still couldn’t get past the Chippa United defense.

In the end, the Port Elizabeth outfit walked away with all the points after having a remarkable performance especially by their defenders in front of their home fans, who would be proud of their local team.


By: Luzuko Sampo

Getting to know Lesetja Kganyago

President Jacob Zuma announced that South Africa’s new Reserve Bank governor for the next five years would be Lesetja Kganyago.thumb

Born in Alexandra in 1965, the Governor later moved to Polokwane with his mother. Returning to Johannesburg at the age of 18, he enrolled at Wits University where he joined the commerce faculty. He would later complete his Bachelor of Commerce degree in accounting and economics in 1991 through Unisa and move on to acquire his Master’s degree in economics from the prestigious London School of Economics.

Amongst his list of accolades the Harvard University educated governor also has the Eurobond Deal of the Year, Helen Suzman Leadership Award and the South African Institute of Race Relations Scholarship.

The Mail and Guardian reports that Marcus’s decision to resign after her first term did not come as a complete surprise to all.

It was initially expected that Kganyago would replace outgoing governor Tito Mboweni in 1999 when Kganyago was moved from the bank, shortly before Mboweni left. Instead, Marcus was brought in from outside the bank.

Lesetja Kganyago has also worked for J P Morgan, in New York and as an accountant for the South African ruling party the African National Congress.

Upon his appointment the rand rallied to a session high of R11.2590 on the appointment. . FNB economist and spokesperson Alex Smith said the fact that the rand strengthened slightly following the announcement indicates that investors are broadly in support of the decision.

“At this difficult time for SA’s economy it is important that fiscal and monetary policy work together as efficiently as possible in order to foster economic growth,” he said.

According to Business Day Live one of Lesetja Kganyago’s first priorities when he takes office as Reserve Bank governor next month will be to put the tools in place to execute the Bank’s mandate to safeguard financial stability. His other priority according to Business Day Live was to make the Bank the first port of call for young professionals seeking a career in economics and finance.

by Siyanda Cingco