English News, 14 February 2019

Written by on 14/02/2019

News Editor: Xolisa Sindaphi

Metrorail’s Enforcement Unit has been succesful 

Metrorail has suffered no major infrastructure damage since October. It coincides with the launch of the 100-member Rail Enforcement Unit.The rail operator has on Thursday briefed the media on the unit’s successes. Between October and January, the Rail Enforcement Unit conducted 133 joint operations which led to 66 arrests. Metrorail’s Richard Walker says they’ve recorded no significant losses since the unit’s launch. In September, the rail operator suffered damages of more than R39 million. Metrorail lost almost half its fleet in arson attacks last year, however, none of the 66 arrests made by the Rail Enforcement Unit were in connection with the train fires.

FUL had bought an application to withdraw case against Richard Mdluli

Deputy National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) boss Nomvula Mokhatla has revealed how she was kept in the dark about high-profile civil litigation being handled by then prosecutions boss, Nomgcobo Jiba. Mokhatla has testified at the Mokgoro inquiry which is sitting in Centurion on Thursday. Mrwebi possibly misrepresented Dramat’s view on Mdluli case The advocate is responsible for the NPA’s legal advisory division which handles civil litigation brought against the organisation. Mokhatla says she was made aware that Freedom Under Law (FUL) had brought an application to challenge the decision to withdraw the case against former police crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli. Mokhatla says she was then told by Lawrence Mrwebi that the organisation had withdrawn the matter. Months later she was called to Jiba’s office. She says she was unhappy with not being kept abreast of civil matters considering it was one of her responsibilities.

Hawks on a bust

The Hawks have cracked down on a multi-million rand abalone operation in Durbanville, in the Western Cape.Officials, including those from the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, discovered abalone worth more than R3.1 million at a drying facility on Wednesday.Two suspects were arrested.Hawks spokesperson Philani Nkwalase said: “Several drying equipment used to process abalone were seized along with the wet abalone, as well as dried one and processed abalone.”Last month, two people were arrested after police found abalone worth R2.4 million in Milnerton and in December, a man was arrested after officers discovered abalone valued at R3 million in Swellendam.

McBride to testify on the attempt to capture law enforcement agencies

The commission has postponed the testimony of Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) head Robert McBride who was meant to take the stand on Thursday. Vytjie Mentor’s description of Gupta residence scrutinised This was to allow the commission to notify the people who he’s expected to implicate in his testimony.The commission says McBride’s statement was only finalised on Wednesday night and, as a result, over 30 high profile individuals he is expected to implicate haven’t been notified. McBride, who is expected to testify on the attempt to capture law enforcement agencies, will be back at the commission on a date soon to be announced.Meanwhile, the commission will hear evidence from Treasury officials on Monday and Tuesday next week. Witness corroborates Vytjie Mentor’s claims of Gupta ministerial job offerOn Wednesday, the inquiry will start the first day of a three-week stretch dealing with the embattled power utility Eskom.It’s expected to hear evidence of mismanagement and corruption at the state-owned enterprise.

DA wins ward 54 by 88%

The Democratic Alliance has retained ward 54, in the Camps Bay, Sea Point area, following a by-election. The by-election was called after the ward became vacant due to the previous councillor’s resignation. The DA’s candidate, Nicola Jowell, won with 88 percent of the vote. The Cape Party’s candidate, Gavin Duncan Ford received 9 percent, while the ANC’s Donald Munro received one-point-seven percent of the vote. While in another by-election in ward 4 in Knysna, the ANC won the ward after receiving 60 percent of the vote.

Ramaphosa speaks on allegation of selling out comrades

President Cyril Ramaphosa has responded to claims that he sold out his comrades during apartheid. On Wednesday, struggle stalwart and Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota branded Ramaphosa a sellout. During his reply to the debate on his State of the Nation Address on Thursday, Ramaphosa stated he was advised not to respond to the accusations, but felt it important to set the record straight.The president has told the house that despite being arrested as a 21-year-old student in 1974 and being detained in solitary confinement for six months, he refused to turn state witness.Ramaphosa says his father, a policeman, visited him in detention in Pretoria and supported his decision. There are three things that security police want from you: it’s either you cooperate with them and you give evidence against your comrades, or you become an askari and go and kill your comrades, or you become a paid agent. I did not do any of the three things they wanted.He says after his release from prison, he was not allowed to return to university and joined the Black People’s Convention. Ramaphosa was arrested again in 1974, but again refused to turn on his comrades and was eventually released.And they said you’re going to be like Nelson Mandela, you’re going to break rocks on Robben Island. I said, in the end, I rather go and break rocks and will never ever betray my people.The president has warned MPs against wedge drivers that he says could lead to people being killed. Ramaphosa says ANC leaders knew better than to listen to tall tales about Madiba.


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