Archive for the ‘Home’ Category

This is not Civil Disobedience…

October 7, 2013

THIS IS NOT CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE….SIMPLY FIGHTING FOR OUR RIGHTS…”TOY TOY BY EMAIL”

 

Send this on to everyone you know in SA to ‘hopefully’ stand together on this one.  

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Remember, postal summonses are not legal documents and you need not react to them.

Henk Bolhuis [Ex-Deputy Chief Traffic Officer of Pretoria]

TAX

I think, and I am sure that many of you are the same, that the tolls are a disgrace, both the extortionate toll fees themselves and also the widely published fact that we are expected to pay up to R18 BILLION over the next 10 years just to collect the toll fees. I wanted to share the clarity of thought in this mail and agree that I will not be installing anything on my car. They are not going to have easy access to my bank account, they say they want a debit order – forget it. Send me a bill (by registered mail) every time – and I will pay it just as fast as I pay the speeding fines that arrive by normal post (which I also ignore). Together we can make this whole thing fail – as it should. Let the toll gates stay there, not working, as monuments to people power. Let’s call this the start of the SA Awakening, look what the normal people are achieving in North Africa with the Arab Awakening. I hope this goes around at least a billion times. Taxes and Open Road Toll Fees People should not install the transponders but still use the highways and force the government to issue accounts and summonses to all motorists until such time they drop the prices. The government will be forced to send out millions of accounts every month and they don’t have the manpower to do it. This is the best and easiest way to boycott the system. What is the government going to do about motorists from other neighboring countries that don’t have these transponders? South Africans are too complacent and its time we fight back.  WE have paid for these roads. Now they are also proposing a 1% tax to fund the SABC Circulate this to all your friends!!!!!!!! Has anyone thought just how much tax we are already paying? a. 35% on your salary b. 14% on everything you buy (bar fresh produce) and services rendered. c. Carbon tax if you buy a new car (besides the 14% VAT you have to pay) d. Tax on the fuel you put in your car to run it. e. Toll on our roads – and for some it is going to come to a whopper of 10% of your salary (If you earn R10 000.00 a R1 000 would go toward tolling if you migrate between PTA and JHB every day.) Bully to try and pacify me with the idea that I can claim it back from my income tax!!! I have to fork out the money first. Going on holiday to DBN? Remember to save up your R1000.00 for tolling. To say the least – For every R10.00 you earn, the government is already taking approx R6.00 and still they want more. Are you happy with the R4.00 you are getting? NICE!!!!! When are we going to get up and do something about it? Where is all the money going to? It is definitely not being spent on what it should be – our hospitals are in a state of disrepair, our schools in shambles, our roads full of potholes, our water contaminated, sewers not working, left in the dark because Eskom failed to do their upgrades, the poor are poorer still, municipalities on the brink of collapse, and so the list goes on. Heard about the youth day celebration that cost R100 million? Mmmm… did you pay for it? Oh yes sir/madam you did! R100 million that could have paid for a couple of things our country needed more. And to put the numbers in perspective: The next time you hear an SA politician use the word ‘billion’in a casual manner, think about whether you wanted the ‘politicians’ spending YOUR tax money. A billion is a difficult number to comprehend, but one advertising agency did a good job of putting that figure into some perspective in one of its press releases: A. A billion seconds ago it was 1959. B.. A billion minutes ago Jesus was born in Bethlehem. C. A billion Rand ago was only 27 hours and 12 minutes at the rate our SA government is squandering it (over a billion rand a day??!!) Building Permit Tax Cigarette Tax Corporation Tax Income Tax Value Added Tax Fishing License Tax Food License Tax Fuel License Tax Petrol/Diesel Tax Hunting License Tax Luxury Tax Property Tax Service charge taxes Capital gains Tax Social Security Tax Securities Transfer Tax Road Usage Tax Local Tax Vehicle License Registration Tax Vehicle Sales Tax Worker’s Compensation Tax STILL THINK THIS IS FUNNY? Hardly any of these taxes existed 20 years ago… And our nation was one of the most prosperous in Africa. We had absolutely no national debt… What happened ? ANSWER : Look at the Government…..and who is ‘running’ the country…. INTO THE GROUND – on YOUR and MY ‘billions’!!! We hope this goes around at least a billion times.

 

Open Letter…

December 12, 2012

Greetings,

I am sharing this with you based on my experience with the school and the response received from the staff when we tried to address a few concerns we encounted with the school.

Open letter to the Principal

Choose Carefully…part1

November 21, 2012

This post is being written after much discussion with a few people and while in consutation and dispute.

Life is not how it use to be, simple, care-free and fun. With all the technology, information and other responsibilities come a host of challenges as well.

Schools are institutions of learning and although not the only places they are fundamental in your junior years (actually the first seven years of your life). This foundational platform that is laid will determine how you cope, adopt and adjust with your schooling years. Not only is this ‘conditioning’ done in a physical sense but there is huge impact on a childs psychological and emotional state of being. This is evident by watching a childs reaction when they achieve or master a task which we will call simple, yet to them will be very complex.

Relationships also play an important part in ensuring children have a well rounded education. as it has been mentioned in the begining of this post that this is being done in the midst of a dispute. The dispute is between parents and a school.

If there was ever a time relationships need to be good is just there, educators, management teams and parents make for good wholistic education for children. When the quality of the teaching practice is found to be of a substandard, the parents are a little wiser and the management team become arrogant, then there is a need for concern.

Parents I would like to urge you to consider your chose of school for your children carefully. Independent/ private schools need to make their board of directors known to the customer…yes you are a customer…you are paying for a service. What they fail to realise as the service provider is that you are also a shareholder as their salary is dependent on your child being at that school.

You are also being urged parents to cross reference information, look at children in government school and see what is their level of work standard to the one your child is receiving. The saying will always stand, ‘In the land of the blind the man with one eye is king.’ Also educate yourself about some of the policies and regulation and make sure you look at your childs work when they do homework.

I am in a dispute with a school my son attends, and the issue is based on principle. Gate-keepers are not always right and usually are more defensive when they are aware that they will be found to be wrong. I am not ashamed to exercise my democractic right to expose mal-practice and injustices especially at the extent of the consumer and when children are being prejudiced.

More about this in part 2…

Stop South Africa’s Secrecy Bill!

May 30, 2011

RIGHT2KNOW (R2K)

Thousands of people across South Africa have united against the proposed Protection of Information Bill (the Secrecy Bill) being discussed in Parliament, which threatens to drag South Africa back to apartheid-era secrecy and undermine community struggles for access to information. Despite months of public outcry from a wide spectrum of civil society organisations, political parties and ordinary citizens, MPs of the ruling party seem determined to finalise the Bill by 24 June with many of its draconian provisions intact!

 

The Right2Know Campaign calls on all those who object to the passing of the Secrecy Bill in its current form to make their collective and individual voices heard now by signing this petition!

Let the truth be told

Stop South Africa’s Secrecy Bill!

A responsive and accountable democracy that can meet the basic needs of our people is built upon transparency and the free flow of information. The gains of South Africans’ struggle for freedom are threatened by the Protection of Information Bill (the Secrecy Bill) currently before Parliament. We accept the need to replace apartheid-era secrecy legislation. However, this Bill extends the veil of secrecy in a manner reminiscent of that same apartheid past. This Bill fundamentally undermines the struggle for whistleblower protection and access to information. It is one of a number of proposed measures which could have the combined effect of fundamentally undermining the right to access information and the freedom of expression enshrined in the Constitution.

 

The Bill will create a society of secrets

  • Any state agency, government department, even a parastatal and your local municipality, would be able to classify public information as secret. Over 1000 institutions would be granted this power.
  • The definitions of ‘national security’ remain vague and open to abuse. Even ordinary information relating to service delivery can become secret. Officials do not need to provide reasons for making information secret
  • Anyone involved in the ‘unauthorized’ disclosure of classified information can be prosecuted; not just the state official who leaks information.
  • The disclosure even of some information which is not formally classified can land citizens in jail. This will lead to self-censorship and have a chilling effect on free speech.
  • Whistleblowers and journalists could face harsh prison sentences for releasing classified information in the public interest; they would spend more time in prison than officials who deliberately conceal public information that should be disclosed. Even the leaking of secret information in the public interest is criminalised.
  • A complete veil is drawn over the workings of the intelligence services. It will prevent public scrutiny of our spies should they abuse their power or breach human rights.

 

Our demands:

The Constitution demands accountable, open and responsive government, realised among other things through freedom of expression and access to information. Our elected representatives are bound by these Constitutional values and any legislation they pass must comply. Furthermore, we recognise that the Protection of Information Bill is a symptom and symbol of an existing climate of secrecy facing South African communities today: ordinary South Africans struggle to access information that is relevant to their livelihoods. We demand that the Protection of Information Bill – the Secrecy Bill – must reflect the following:

 

  1. The Bill should apply only to core state bodies in the security sector such as the police, defence and intelligence agencies.
  1. Even then, the Bill’s powers must be limited to strictly-defined national security matters and no more. Officials must give reasons for making information secret.
  1. Do not exempt the intelligence agencies from public scrutiny.
  1. Do not apply penalties for unauthorised disclosure to society at large, only those responsible for keeping secrets.
  1. Do not criminalise whistleblowers and journalists: the Bill must protect those who release classified information if that information is in the public interest.
  1. An independent body appointed by Parliament, and not the Minister of State Security, should be able to review decisions about what may be made secret.

 

Any law that doesn’t meet these demands is unconstitutional and must be scrapped!

 To sign this petition, visit www.r2k.org.za or fill in your details below:

 

First Name Surname Email address Phone Signature
 

Please return to Tinashe Njanji by 10 June 2011: admin@r2k.org.za or 0214617211

Right2Know calls for new period of action on Secrecy Bill

May 26, 2011

Right2Know calls for new period of action on Secrecy Bill
26 May 2011
The decision by ANC MPs on Parliament’s ad-hoc committee to vote on clauses of the Secrecy Bill on Tuesday confirms that the ruling party is willing to use its majority on the committee to steamroll a range of unresolved problems with the Bill (see outstanding demands below). Despite months of public outcry from a wide spectrum of civil society organisations, political parties and ordinary citizens and stalled debate in the committee room, MPs have failed to reduce in any meaningful way the Secrecy Bill’s draconian provisions. Indeed, ANC MPs seem determined to finalise the Bill by June 24 using any means necessary, including ramming it through via clause-by-clause voting.

What yesterday’s events confirm is that the ANC position on the Secrecy Bill has hardened. As a result, its MPs have reneged on a number of concessions made in recent months to reduce the Bill’s powers.

On Tuesday the chair of the committee, Cecil Burgess, allowed state law advisors to table a version of the Bill which does not include the concessions made in a previous draft tabled by the ANC. This version of the Bill will introduce wide powers for the state to classify information at every level, and will have no independent oversight, or proper whistleblower protection. In doing so, Burgess and other ANC MPs on the committee have negated a number of gains made in narrowing the Bill’s discretions, reversing what progress had been made in aligning the Bill with constitutional provisions around the rights of freedom of expression and access to information.

This is a struggle that is bigger than political affiliation. The Secrecy Bill will affect us all!

The Right2Know Campaign is calling for a new period of action to stop the Secrecy Bill.  We call on all those who are seriously concerned by this turn of events to make their collective and individual voices heard now. In the coming days, as MPs meet in Parliament to finalise the Secrecy Bill, R2K working groups will join together to develop plans to ratchet up the pressure to halt this regressive piece of legislation that threatens to take our country back to the dark days of secrecy. The ANC must abandon its efforts to pass the Bill in its current form and withdraw the Bill to be redrafted from scratch, with proper public consultation. We will spread the message across the country and the globe:  Stop the Secrecy Bill! Let the truth be told!

For comment please contact:

Dale McKinley
R2K Gauteng spokesperson
072 429 4086 and dtmckinley@gmail.com

Judith February
R2K Western Cape spokesperson
083 453 9817 and jfebruary@idasa.org.za

Quinton Kippen
R2K KwaZulu Natal spokesperson
083 871 7549 and quinton@ddpdurban.org.za

Murray Hunter
R2K National coordinator
072 672 5468 and murray@r2k.org.za
R2K demands:
When the Right2Know launched on 31 August 2011, we tabled the ‘7 Point Freedom Test’, a list of demands that must be met by any law governing state secrecy. So far only one has been addressed:

1.      Limit secrecy to core state bodies in the security sector such as the police, defence and intelligence agencies.

2.      Limit secrecy to strictly-defined national security matters and no more. Officials must give reasons for making information secret.

3.      Exclude commercial information from this Bill.

4.      Do not exempt the intelligence agencies from public scrutiny.

5.      Do not apply penalties for unauthorised disclosure to society at large, only those responsible for keeping secrets.

6.      An independent body appointed by Parliament, and not the Minister of State Security, should be the arbiter of decisions about what may be made secret.

7.      Do not criminalise the legitimate disclosure of secrets in the public interest.

Any law that doesn’t meet these demands is unconstitutional and must be scrapped!

Duties of Metro Police…

April 18, 2011

Greetings Mr. A. Pillay,

I am not sure if my previous correspondence to you was the reason for the smooth flow of traffic from the 07th of April 2011 to the 15th of April 2011. I would like to thank you should for ensuring that these officers do their work effectively and efficiently.

As of Saturday 16 April 2011, the robots at the intersection of the M41 and the N2 (north bound) off ramp as well the M41 and N2 (south bound) of ramp have been out of order. Today traffic was backed on the M41 way past the bridge going over the Phoenix Highway. There was a metro police vehicle parked on the painted island monitoring traffic ensuring no vehicles travel in the emergency lane perform any illegal activity either traveling east on the M41 or as they join the M41 from the Phoenix Highway. There was also a vehicle (NDM 6817) parked in the bushes where Flanders Drive joins the M41 (east bound) and a male and female offer performing their routine duty of pulling vehicles over and giving them tickets for various reasons. After spending more than 45minutes (7:35-8:20am) to get from the Flanders Drive/M41 intersection to the M41/N2 intersection then to notice the robots still not working with only a points man at the M41/N2 (south bound) intersection. An additional points man was walking towards the M41/N2 (North bound) off ramp to perform duty.

As I have not heard from you previously regarding the first correspondence sent, it is with grave concern that I need to ask what the purpose of metro police is when traffic lights at major intersections are not working yet the officers are giving traffic violation tickets a few hundred metres away? Does not the interest of society become first priority to ensure traffic is smooth flowing allowing them to get to work at reasonable times or is the metro police becoming a capitalist body whose only interest is about making money from traffic fines and fulfilling their fine quotas for the day? This has to be asked because I am only noticing these police giving tickets and performing these duties at those particular points between the 16th and end of every month.

Please can you provide some clarity to this regard.

I look forward to your correspondence.

Thank you,

Regards

Quinton Kippen

Name them but most of all discipline them appropriately…

April 18, 2011

Greetings Mr. A. Pillay

Sent: 06 April 2011

I reside in Phoenix and commute Monday to Friday to the city centre to work. It is very interesting to note that on most days there are metro police vehicles (Verulam or Kwa Mashu) parked either in the yellow line on the M41 (up to 8 vehicles) and at least 12 personnel pulling over motorists checking the vehicles and issuing fines for various faults that were found. This activity mostly takes place during peak traffic (6:30am-8:30am) at least twice a week.

Last Thursday 31 March 2011, the metro police were out on duty doing their random checks and pulling over motorists and issuing tickets for various reasons. On Friday 01 April 2011, there was not a police vehicle or personnel in sight and the traffic lights at the intersection of the M41/ N2 off ramp were out of order.

Today, coming to work there was a slight drizzle and the traffic light at the M41/N2 off was not working correctly. After spending more than 90minutes in traffic from the Phoenix highway on ramp to the M41 to the M41/N2 intersection we find the robots not working and parked on the island next to the robot is a metro police vehicle (NDM 7435). One of the officers was standing outside the vehicle talking with a lady while the other officer was sitting in the vehicle. The intersection was very chaotic and they showed no interest in trying to remedy the situation.

I called your offices (031 361 0000) and spoke with Josh who informed me that the response he got from a captain from the North Durban unit was that the  police could not perform points duty because it was raining.

My second point during my journey to work, at the intersection of the Jan Smuts highway and the road leading to Cato Manor. Two metro police officers were in the metro police truck with their eyes fixed on the cellphones while people were blatantly engaging in illegal activity of making U-turns and the intersection to go back up the Jan Smuts Highway. Unfortunately as I write this letter I do not have the registration of the truck on hand but it is in my possession.

Please can you help me understand and confirm if this response is true and if this is not can you please provide a reason and the steps taken should this be a case of people shirking their responsibility as paid officers.

I look forward to your response.

Thank you,

Regards

Quinton Kippen

Sutcliffe wants to rent out the beach…

April 14, 2011

Rental of beach

Can you believe this, and to confirm it I met with the association fighting this and they have confirmed it. This issue actually started out as an April Fools joke and now has become a reality. I will not allow another person to claim the beach as their own and privatise it for personal gain. Show your support against these injustice taking place in the country and especially in our own municipality.

Finalising the Secrecy Bill

April 7, 2011

We call on the people of South Africa and organisations to take a stand against the bullish arrogant behaviour of government…

Committee expects to finish Secrecy Bill in four meetings

The Right2Know campaign today expressed its shock at the proposed schedule for finishing work on the Secrecy Bill, and called for the Committee to scrap the Bill. A proposed schedule being circulated among committee members suggests that the Bill may be debated for another four meetings, and then voting to adopt a position on the Bill.

 

“We’ve seen the proposed schedule for wrapping up the Secrecy Bill, which suggests four more deliberation meetings of the Committee will do the trick,” said Alison Tilley on behalf of the campaign.  “No amendments have yet been tabled, and one of those meetings will do nothing but try to get the various opposition party positions clear, without the ANC tabling anything until the subsequent meeting. The committee therefore have to do a line by line reading of the Bill, and deal with the wording of all proposed changes in just two meetings.”

 

“It is this type of planning that has caused the discussions on the Bill to go in circles in the Committee,” said Tilley.

 

The Right2Know campaign has repeatedly called into question the Committee’s readiness to deal with a Bill as dangerous and far-reaching as the Secrecy Bill. The position of the ANC is not clear on many of the major issues raised by civil society and the opposition, let alone the minor drafting issues that have not yet even been discussed.

 

In light of the mounting unresolved problems with the Bill, the campaign believes that withdrawing the Bill to be redrafted from scratch is the only feasible solution.

 

Furthermore, in the event that the committee attempts to go ahead with the current schedule – passing the Bill to the National Assembly by 24 June – the Right2Know campaign will return to mass action to highlight and expose our MPs’ cavalier approach to this disastrous Bill and apparent willingness to ram through anti-democratic legislation.

 

Unresolved issues

§  The Bill still promises to cast a veil of secrecy across the public sector, covering 1001 institutions, including municipalities, universities and parastatals such as Eskom.

§  The Bill still promises outrageously harsh prison sentences for journalists who expose secrets in the public interest. There is no public interest defence.

§  The Bill will still penalise everyone in the ‘distribution chain’ of leaked information (i.e. it will be a crime to receive a state secret). It should only be the official who breaches classification that should be penalised.

§  The Bill was never submitted for a cost assessment as required by the Public Finance Management Act. This may be an impossible task, since the Bill’s applications are so wide.

§  The committee has failed to correctly categorise the Bill, thereby excluding the National Council of Provinces from deliberations

§  There is no independent oversight for the making of secrets. In the current version of the Bill the Safety and Security Minister is responsible for reviews.

 

 

Copy of proposed schedule for Protection of Information Bill

Friday 15 Apr – deliberations

Tues 19 Apr – deliberations

Tues 24 May – deliberations

Fri 27 May – deliberations

Fri 3 June – voting on proposed amendments

Fri 10 June – final consideration of amendments

Fri 17 June – adoption of report

Fri 24 June – Report to be debated in the House

 

The DA is shooting itself in the foot by refusing to explain its alleged relationship with the Gupta family.

March 18, 2011

S’thembiso Msomi: The DA is shooting itself in the foot by refusing to explain its alleged relationship with the Gupta family.


Columnists

When the Sunday Times asked the party, two weeks ago, if it had ever benefitted from donations by the family or any of its companies, DA federal chairman James Selfe refused to say.

“The DA has a long-standing policy never to disclose information about donations to the party . [We] do not say who does or who does not donate to the party,” Selfe said.

On Sunday, City Press reported that DA leader and Western Cape Premier Helen Zille had refused to confirm or deny allegations that she had visited the Gupta compound in Saxonwold, Johannesburg, in October.

The newspaper quoted sources that said that they had seen Zille being dropped at the house by a driver and that she had gone inside alone.

Instead of a straightforward answer, admitting or denying that Zille had visited the Guptas, her spokesman, Priya Reddy, adopted the same stance as Selfe, hiding behind party policy of not revealing the identity of its donors.

Mind you, City Press had not asked if the family funded the DA – it wanted to know if the party leader had visited the house.

For a political party that professes to be a great advocate of an open society, the DA’s behaviour is curious.

An open society, the DA tells us in its policy documents, is one in which, among other things, “transparency and accountability” are guaranteed.

Well, it is time party leaders practised what they preach.

If Zille did visit the Gupta homestead, she broke no law. Like any other citizen, she has every right to pay a visit to the home of whomever she wants. But her party’s refusal to confirm or deny that she did so leads to suspicions that she has something to hide.

There have been too many rumours about the Guptas holding sway over our political elite. Much of this has centred on their ties to President Jacob Zuma and his family.

But there have also been allegations that the brothers – or those connected to them – often brag to ANC and government officials about their influence extending far beyond the ruling party.

Unless the DA and other political parties are open about their sources of funding, it is difficult not to believe that their unusual silence when the Gupta story first broke had to do with donations to party coffers.

Zille should take a leaf out of United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa’s book.

When the Sunday Times approached Holomisa with similar claims that his party was a beneficiary of the Gupta brothers’ generosity, the former Transkei ruler readily admitted to having received R100000 from the family.

“They helped us with the conference last year and it was the first time we had gone to them,” Holomisa said.

His openness about the issue makes Holomisa believable when he says the donation did not influence his party’s attitude towards the family.

“Our integrity is not compromised. We are not apologetic . because political parties approach all companies cap in hand. We went to them in good faith and we even wrote them a letter thanking them for the donation,” Holomisa said.

As the country’s second-biggest political party – and the ruling one in Western Cape – the DA wields a lot of power.

Therefore it should be our right as citizens to know if its decisions – and of course those of the ANC – are not unduly influenced by secret funders.

If there is one thing the ANC and the DA seem to be in agreement on it is their refusal to support steps that would make political party funding more transparent.

DA leaders often say the party will open its books only once the ANC agrees to do so.

But if the party is genuine about building itself into an attractive alternative to the ANC, it will choose transparency over secrecy.

It is hypocritical of its leaders to demand that the ruling party be transparent about the Progressive Business Forum, Chancellor House and other fund-raising methods the ANC employs while it keeps its own books closed.