Daily Archives: July 13, 2017

President Zuma declares Special Provincial Official Funeral for trade unionist, Ms Mashinini

President Jacob Zuma has declared a Special Provincial Official Funeral for respected trade unionist and human rights activist, Ms Emma Mashinini, who passed on 10 July 2017, at the age of 87.Ms Mashinini, a recipient of the Order of the Baobab and the…

Wait finally over for Westonaria home owners

Westonaria � Last year, when Thabiso Mosethe was preparing for his matric exams, he had to wait until all his family members were asleep before he could start studying, due to limited space in the house.

My grandmother’s house is too small and everyone is forced to squash in because it’s the only home for all of us, including cousins, aunts and uncles, the 19-year-old told SAnews.

Mosethe was among the 60 beneficiaries in the community of Westonaria Borwa who were handed title deeds by Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu on Thursday.

Mosethe, who is a first year medical student at Wits University, has been looking after his 13-year-old brother and six-year-old sister for the past three years, following his parents’ death.

He told SAnews that having their own house and a title deed as proof of ownership is a huge relief for him and his siblings.

I still can’t believe that we now have our own place at my age because it’s been a struggle at my grandmother’s house with everyone staying there. Now I have enough space and time for my studies.

If it wasn’t for government, most people would still be suffering in informal settlements with no proper sewerage system and water, said an elated Mosethe.

Another beneficiary Makemelo Anna Tlhomola couldn’t hold back her excitement and started singing in appreciation of what the government has done.

I’m lost for words with everything happening today, thank you, said the 80-year-old.

During the event, Minister Sisulu handed over 60 of the 150 title deeds to the community. The beneficiaries included senior citizens, child headed households and disabled people.

Speaking at the handing over ceremony, Minister Sisulu acknowledged that although more than 4.6 million houses and subsidies have been delivered across the country, many people are still without houses.

She said one of the benefits of having a title deed is that it does not only cover the owner of the house but the whole family.

It is much further than yourself. It ensures that the older people are able to hand over their assets to their children and grandchildren. If the owner passed away, no one will come and evict you, it will belong to the family, said Minister Sisulu.

Don’t sell your houses

She also urged the beneficiaries not to sell their houses and move back to the shacks they stayed in before, warning them that the law does not allow a person to sell the house before 10 years of occupation.

The house you are selling for R20 000, we are building it for R160 000. Also, keep your environment clean and safe, she told beneficiaries.

She also encouraged people with skills to make use of the housing project by perfecting their skills because the owners would need their services, which would in turn generate an income for them.

There will be an office for small business here, take advantage of that office to perfect your skills, said Minister Sisulu.

Gauteng Human Settlements MEC Paul Mashatile said the housing in Westonaria has been extended and by the time the project is completed, there would be 16 000 houses in the area.

In these new projects, we are building new cities, including clinics, schools and police stations. We have identified 14 sites for the building of schools, with the building of two new schools starting next week, said MEC Mashatile.

He added that 1 600 title deeds are ready and assured the community that the houses would be allocated fairly.

We will allocate the houses according to the waiting list, and there would be no jumping queues, he said.

Source: South African Government News Agency

South African National Defence Force Hosts Joint Military Exercise Northern Cape, 17 July to 4 Aug

South Africa and United States of America to execute a Joint Military Exercise in the Northern CapeThe South African National Defence Force (SANDF) will host a joint exercise over the period 17 July to 4 August 2017 at the South African Army Combat Tra…

Botswana Risks China Backlash With Dalai Lama Visit

GABORONE � Botswana will host the Dalai Lama, Tibet’s spiritual leader, next month, officials said on Thursday, risking a backlash from China, a major investor in the African country’s economy.

The Dalai Lama is expected to address a human rights conference in the capital Gaborone on August 17-19 and will also meet Botswana’s president during the trip.

“President Ian Khama will meet the Dalai Lama when he is in Botswana. But the president’s attendance at the conference, for the official opening or otherwise, will be determined by his schedule,” Khama’s office said in a statement.

The Dalai Lama, who lives in exile in India, has long been at loggerheads over Tibet with China, which brands him a reactionary and a separatist. The Dalai Lama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, says he seeks greater rights, including religious freedom, and true autonomy for Tibetans.

Neighbouring South Africa has denied a visa to the Buddhist monk three times since 2009 in what opposition parties and Archbishop Desmond Tutu say shows the extent of China’s sway over Pretoria.

China’s fast-growing demand for raw materials has made it one of the biggest investors in Africa and its largest trade partner. Chinese state-owned companies have been awarded contracts worth billions of pula to build roads, dams, power stations and airports in Botswana.

Tang Shenpieng, the director of politics at the Chinese Embassy in Botswana declined to immediately comment, saying his office would issue a statement on the Dalai Lama’s visit soon.

But Lin Songtian, the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s director-general for African affairs, told reporters last Wednesday in Beijing that allowing the Dalai Lama to visit Botswana would set back relations between the two countries.

“Botswana should not harm such a true friend and reliable development partner as China and challenge the core interest of China and the dignity of Chinese people,” he was reported as saying.

Source: Voice of America