|February 23rd, 2008||#21|
Join Date: Oct 2007
|February 23rd, 2008||#22|
SAP founder Hasso Plattner invests in green South Africa
It seems to be the latest fad among the SAP crowd. First, Shai Agassi raises $200 million for Project Better Place, which hopes to install electric charging stations and kick start the electric car industry.
Now Hasso Plattner, SAP's founder, has raised a fund, approximately worth $45 million, to invest in start-ups in South Africa, according to publications in that country. A portion of the funds will go to clean-tech companies. Originally from Germany, Plattner currently owns golf courses in South Africa.
Like many nations (Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Spain, the U.S., China, and Japan), South Africa has set its sights on being a center for clean-technology development. It has universities, a government interested in creating high-tech exports, and quite a bit of sun. That's important if you want to experiment with solar. South Africa also has a lot of experience in making liquid car fuel out of coal. During the Apartheid era, it was tough for the country to get oil. Thus, it erected Fischer-Tropsch plants. With oil trading around $100 a barrel, some believe that liquid fuel from coal could become popular. (The emissions on liquid coal, however, are not good.)
So far, however, South Africa's main tech exports have been emigrants such as Elon Musk (Tesla Motors, SpaceX, PayPal) and Lyndon Rive (Solar City).
|February 23rd, 2008||#23|
Is black SA turning old friends into foes?
February 22 2008 at 03:29PM
By Pius Adesarmi
The letters came within two days of each other. The first was an invitation from Professor Georges Harault, director of the French Institute of South Africa (IFAS). Three years after my last visit to South Africa to assess the perception of Francophone African literatures in universities, IFAS was again inviting me as visiting scholar.
The second was from Chris Dunton, the chairperson of the English Department of the National University of Lesotho at Roma. Like Harault, Dunton was inviting me to Lesotho as visiting scholar.
I arranged a few other engagements and braced up for a very engaging psychic reconnection with the African continent.
I needed the return to Africa badly. I had been away from the continent for an uncomfortable stretch, carrying out my scholarly labour in the minefield of North American academe, writing Africa "from a rift", as Achille Mbembe would put it. I also needed a reprieve from the oppression of the North American media image of Africa.
The African living here is in constant danger of accepting whatever image of Africa he or she is presented by the media as gospel truth.
In North America, I have been consistently assailed, assaulted, and oppressed with images of Africa traceable to the colonial library: Africa-as-Aids, Africa-as-hunger, Africa-as-civil war, Africa-as-corruption, Africa-as-the-antithesis-of-democracy, Africa-as-everything-we-are-glad-not-to-be.
You get tired of the ritual of explaining to charmingly ignorant interlocutors that there is a fundamental distinction between the Africa they see on CNN and the real Africa.
I also wanted a break from Occidentalism. Fernando Coronil, the scholar who coined this term, uses the concept to account for those discursive, usually innocuous processes through which the West turns difference into hierarchy and reproduces existing asymmetrical power relations. Occidentalism covers all the mundane quotidian events through which the West constantly reminds the immigrant of his otherness, strangeness, and difference.
Departure date finally came around. "Be careful. Urban violence is rife in South Africa," the Nigerian friends who drove me to the airport warned. I shrugged and dismissed their anxiety. There may be violence in South Africa; I certainly was not going to be scared of returning to Africa. I wasn't going to be afraid of black people in Africa.
I arrived in Johannesburg on a cold July morning. A delighted Harault was on hand at the airport to welcome me. We drove straight to the offices of IFAS located in downtown Johannesburg.
Later I announced to Harault that I was going to take a stroll. I was eager to get a feel of the same streets I had seen three years earlier.
Harault's countenance changed. "Be careful. Don't go out there with your wallet. You could get mugged." I assured Harault I would be all right but took the precaution of leaving my valuables in his office.
I started my walk on the busy Bree Street. For someone who had walked the same street three years earlier, I could not help but observe the heavy black presence. Like the Hillbrow area, blacks have taken over downtown Johannesburg.
The official principle of separate development through which racial segregation was enforced under apart-heid seems to have been replaced by what one may call an unofficial principle of voluntary separation.
While separate development instituted an order in which blacks had to move out whenever whites moved in, as was the case in Sophiatown, voluntary separation now induces whites to move out quietly whenever and wherever blacks move in.
In office complexes and shopping malls, one does not fail to notice the ubiquitous "To Let" signs, evidence of white retreat to "safe" areas of the city like Rosebank or back "home" to Britain, Holland, Canada and Australia.
I was about to cross a busy intersection when a street sign told me I was on Fox Street. Fox street! I had heard a lot of terrifying things about that street since my last trip to South Africa. It is said to be one of the most violent streets in Johannesburg. One could get mugged or killed for as little as R100. I looked around me anxiously.
I was surrounded by a sea of inscrutable black faces. I touched my forehead and found out, much to my irritation, that I was perspiring profusely. It was winter in South Africa! And to my utter embarrassment, I discovered that I relaxed and felt safer each time white faces appeared in the crowd. Here was I, a black man, looking anxiously for white faces to feel safe from black violence in an African city!
I reluctantly came to the realisation that I was far more affected by the oppression of the image of "black violence" in South Africa than I had been willing to admit.
The image of the post-apartheid black condition in South Africa always have two constantly-repeated, over-sensationalised buzzwords: mugging, robbery.
That image had quietly slipped into my subconscious and was responsible for my feeling so uneasy amidst my own kind in a busy street in Johannesburg. I hurried back to IFAS.
On hearing that I had arrived in Johannesburg, Professor Harry Garuba came from his base at the University of Cape Town to spend a weekend with me. After a joyful reunion we hit town.
Harry wanted to see downtown Johannesburg. He also needed to go to the Consulate-General of Nigeria in Rosebank.
As we meandered our way through the ever busy Bree Street, Harry could not help observing how filthy downtown Johannesburg had become.
I had made the same disturbing observation myself the day I arrived, but had been reluctant to accept the disturbing fact that decay of public infrastructure seems to be the story in areas of the city inhabited by blacks.
Predominantly black areas have become an eyesore. The beautiful lawns and flowerbeds I noticed in some areas three years earlier now tell sad stories of degradation.
Some of them have become open-air urinals. Harry and I were worried. We tried to place ourselves in the shoes of white South Africans discussing the now filthy streets of Hillbrow and downtown Johannesburg: "Ah, the good old days of apartheid!"
When Harry concluded his business at the Nigerian consulate, we took a bus and headed back to Hrault's residence.
I still don't know what it was about us that gave us away as foreigners but the other passengers, all blacks, lapsed into an uneasy silence as soon as we entered. I looked at the faces around us and thought I saw hostility.
The tension in the air was so thick you could cut it with a knife. Harry confirmed my worst fears when we left the bus. I had just experienced, firsthand, South African xenophobia and I was to experience it again and again throughout my three-month sojourn in that country.
Harry explained to me with the coolness of someone used to it that the black South African passengers on the bus had identified us as makwerekwere, hence the naked hostility.
Makwerekwere is the derogatory term used by black South Africans to describe non-South African blacks. It reminds one of how the ancient Greeks referred to foreigners whose language they did not understand as the Barbaroi.
To the black South African, makwerekwere refers to black immigrants from the rest of Africa, especially Nigerians. I was confounded by the fact that black South Africa had begun to manufacture its own k*****s so soon after apartheid.
As I later discovered after a series of encounters, black South Africans have found an easy explanation for the myriad problems of poverty, housing, transportation, unemployment, crime, violence, decay of public and social infrastructure.
"Ah, the makwerekwere! These Nigerians are all criminals! When they are not busy trafficking drugs, they are taking over our jobs, our houses and, worse, our women.
"All foreigners must leave this country!" What Salman Rushdie refers to as a "demonising process" of the Other is at work here and the consequences are predictably disastrous.
There is so much anger and frustration among the Nigerians I met in South Africa. Most of them have become paranoid, living permanently in fear.
In a discussion with some Nigerian medical doctors in Pretoria, I observed that their anger is directed more at black South African leaders.
"Imagine these South Africans treating us like this. They think apartheid came to an end because they fought in Sharpeville and Soweto. It means Mandela never told them the truth. Mbeki never told them the truth."
The doctors were referring to Nigeria's heavy moral, political, and financial investment in the anti-apartheid struggle.
Nigeria's financial and political commitment to that cause was total and unflinching. In the 1970s and 1980s, the South African freedom struggle was completely woven into Nigeria's national imagery, so much so that a Nigerian leader, Olusegun Obasanjo, suggested we mobilised "African juju" and other maraboutic forces of African sorcery to attack PW Botha and free our black brothers in South Africa. And he wasn't joking.
Every Nigerian musician, from reggae singers to fuji musicians in the Yoruba tradition, waxed radical anti-apartheid lyrics to energise the 1970s to 1980s. "Who owns the land, who owns the land?
"We want to know who owns Papa's land," crooned Sonny Okosuns. Majek Fashek, the reggae man replied: "Now, now, now, Margaret Thatcher, free Mandela!" Victor Eshiet of The Mandators screamed: "Truth is our right, Jah is our might, we must free South Africa."
Everywhere you turned in the Nigeria of those heady decades, freedom for black South Africans was the dominant national agenda.
Black South Africans, including President Thabo Mbeki, found warmth, hospitality, and friendship during their years of exile in Nigeria. Many black South Africans attended Nigerian universities on Nigerian scholarships.
When it became clear that South African whites, like their European and American kinsmen, were determined to make peaceful change impossible and make violent change inevitable, Nigerians donated money to the armed struggle.
Personally, I recall donating money during special anti-apartheid fundraisers as a high school student in Nigeria.
# view of this, the Nigerians I met in South Africa had only two words to describe the attitude of black South Africans to them: collective amnesia.
Prejudice has been the force majeure of so much of human history. Our pantheon of small-minded hate is formidable: Christian prejudice manufactured the unbeliever; Islamic prejudice manufactured the infidel; heterosexual prejudice manufactured the faggot; patriarchal prejudice manufactured the hysteric; European prejudice Truth is our right, Jah is our might, we must free South Africa manufactured the native; American prejudice manufactured the n****r; German prejudice manufactured the Jew; Israeli prejudice manufactured the Araboushim; Afrikaner prejudice manufactured the k****r.
Not to be outdone, black South Africa has manufactured the ma-kwerekwere as her unique post-apartheid contribution to this gory pantheon.
The joy of your instant-mix coffee or your instant-mix powdered milk is the considerable labour and hassle it saves you.
Just pour water, add sugar to taste, and your drink is ready. The makwere-kwere is black South Africa's instant-mix k****r, very easily produced with minimum labour.
# Pius Adesanmi is Associate Professor of English and director, Project on New African Literatures (www.projectponal.com) at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada.
Last edited by Alex Linder; February 23rd, 2008 at 02:23 PM.
|February 23rd, 2008||#24|
Offensive lyrics incite racism, says FF+
February 23 2008 at 03:53PM
By Bronwynne Jooste
Music has always been a powerful tool of expression but a string of controversial songs in recent years has raised questions about whether artists are crossing the line with lyrics that are racially or religiously offensive.
Just this week the Freedom Front Plus lodged a formal complaint with the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa about a song by artist Zubz, titled Get Out.
The lyrics read: "Understand I'm gonna get this panga to your neck. Take what is mine today and I'll rob you tomorrow."
The song ends: "It's not all white people that's racist. And not all white people perpetuate the imbalance. So not all white people needs to be addressed."
The song and its gory video were broadcast on SABC1 last month.
Willie Spies of the FF Plus said the party had decided to pursue the issue because of the sentiments regarding race. It also felt the song could fuel crime.
"Crime occurs every single day, and some of the incidents have racial undertones. The lyrics are just not appropriate and we can't afford to glorify the use of violence to settle past grievances.
"While the party would not want to impinge on artists' right to express their views, musicians should do so without offending anyone," said Spies.
"We can all agree that freedom of expression has its limits. Even the Constitution says we may not use art to incite violence between different groups. And we need to take note of the context that South Africa does not have a history of peaceful co-existence. We have a past filled with intolerance and oppression, so this kind of rhetoric is unacceptable."
Get Out is not the only song with lyrics deemed offensive to certain people.
Afrikaans singer Bok van Blerk's hit De La Rey was at the centre of another recent controversy.
Van Blerk said his track was merely a tribute to boer general Koos De la Rey, with its lyrics "De la Rey De la Rey/Sal jy die boere kom lei?", meaning "De la Rey, will you come lead the boers?"
Young Afrikaners across the country embraced the song, and were even seen brandishing the old South African flag at Van Blerk's concerts.
The department of arts and culture denounced the song, saying it could be interpreted as a call to arms by racial right-wing groups.
For his part, Van Blerk said, while he in no way identified with any apartheid ideology, he was proud to be Afrikaans and would continue to promote his culture.
In one of the most serious incidents four years ago, songwriter Mbongeni Ngema's song AmaNdiya, meaning "The Indians", sparked outrage and was subsequently banned by the Broadcasting Complaints Commission. It was the first song to be banned in post-apartheid South Africa. It opens with an English voice-over stating: "This song represents the way many African people feel about the behaviour of Indians in this country. It is intended to begin a constructive discussion that will lead to a true reconciliation between Indians and Africans."
The lyrics, in Zulu, state that Indians do not like black people and only vote for white political parties. The words include: "We struggle here in Durban, as we have been dispossessed by Indians/Who in turn are suppressing our people."
Analysts highlighted the fact that racial tensions between the two groups in Durban stretched back to the 1940s, and agreed that the song had the potential to stir up the situation.
The Human Rights Commission's request that the song be banned was eventually granted.
At the time Ngema said his intent was to start a debate around the racial issues between the two groups, not to fuel racism.
He also promised to participate in discussions around improving race relations.
But it's not only racial slurs that raise eyebrows.
Afrikaans punk rock band Fokofpolisiekar have long been at loggerheads with the Christian community over some of their songs.
Guitarist Wynand Myburgh triggered angry reaction in 2006 when he wrote the words "F*k God" on a fan's wallet. Religious commentators across the country voiced their disapproval. None the less, the band, originally from Cape Town, continues to enjoy widespread popularity.
The chairperson of the Cape Town Jazz Festival, Rashid Lombard, said while creative expression should not be stifled, artists should choose their words wisely.
"Music crosses boundaries and, as a medium, should unite more than divide. Artists should try to be sensitive with their lyrics," Lombard said.
The Western Cape Musicians' Association said music had played a powerful role in the country's liberation struggle, and remained an emotive medium.
Spokesperson Rozzano Davids said even in the apartheid era, political parties used music to spread their message.
|February 23rd, 2008||#26|
Zubz video "Get Out"
Now by now some of you must’ve heard about the “Get Out” Zubz video being banned from SABC and Channel O. It seems to me there is a na´ve group of people in SA hell bent on censoring any voice other than the “we are the rainbow nation” one. So much for freedom of speech after thirteen years of democracy.
Last edited by Alex Linder; February 23rd, 2008 at 12:48 PM.
|February 23rd, 2008||#27|
[Indian reaction to nig Ngema anti-Indian song, "The Indians"]
The song of discord
Sunday, Jun 23, 2002
In South Africa, a song by a local artiste, Mbongeni Ngema, is threatening to whip up strong anti-Indian sentiments afresh. EDWIN NAIDU on how the Indian community's sense of belonging has thus come under scrutiny once again.
JUST over 140 years after arriving in South Africa as indentured labourers, Indians appear no more secure about their future in the country than when they first arrived.
Chatsworth ... the largest Indian suburb outside Durban
That sense of belonging has come under intense scrutiny in recent weeks following the release of a song that criticises Indians and their treatment of Africans in the country, particularly Durban in the KwaZulu Natal province.
The man at the centre of the row is a controversial musician Mbongeni Ngema, whose song "Amandiya" (which means "Indians") has sown the seeds of discord rather than promote reconciliation, which the songwriter claims, was his initial intention.
In fact, the tune has polarised the Indian and African communities, sparking fears of a repeat of the most severe racial clash — dubbed the 1949 riots — more than 50 years ago when Indians were attacked in large numbers by Africans in a bloody weekend in January.
Law and order stood still as Africans swept through with their attack on the persons and properties of Indian people. Whites and their businesses and houses were not attacked. Although the official death toll was 142 (87 Africans, 50 Indians, one White and four whose identity could not be established), it is believed many more were killed, raped and Indian women abducted.
South African born Indians have enjoyed and maintained links with India despite the distance between the two countries. Bollywood movies are blockbusters in South Africa. This year, when Amitabh Bachchan visited in April, thousands turned up to welcome him. Annually, religious tours are undertaken to India. During the liberation struggle, India was the first to express support for the African National Congress (ANC), an act reciprocated when Nelson Mandela chose to visit India as his first overseas destination following his release from prison in 1990.
In the wake of the song, Indian community leaders have expressed fears of a repeat of racial clashes, although not on the same scale as the 1949 riots. The song says that while Black people are living in shacks, Indians own lots of businesses and oppress Black people. They also "keep coming from India" to South Africa.
In the past few weeks reports in the Indian mass media have shown a distinct racial edge, one story last weekend about an Indian preacher allegedly raping an African girl, and another about Black youths going on the rampage at a shopping mall in Chatsworth, the largest Indian suburb outside Durban.
Attempts by former President Nelson Mandela to intervene and secure an apology from the artist have so far been futile. Unveiling a monument to honour participants in the 1946 passive resistance campaign, Mandela praised the contribution of Indians in the struggle for a democratic South Africa. The sculptures unveiled during the ceremony depicted events such as the 1913 resistance march led by Mahatma Gandhi, the Sharpeville massacre, the Soweto June 16 uprising and Mandela's release from prison.
It is against this backdrop of bridge building; led by the former President that Ngema's song has been released. In the song Ngema criticises Indians and says, "Whites were better than Indians", and calls for "strong brave men to face/confront Indians", adding that "Indians have conquered Durban — we are poor because all things have been taken by Indians".
Amichand Rajbansi, leader of the Minority Front that has an alliance with the ANC, says Blacks who have not been troubled by Indians previously would now obtain a distorted and disturbing view of the community through the song. "Ngema is very popular among Black people in the province and it is dangerous to imagine where this could lead," he says.
Rajbansi adds that one of the main reasons for the anti-Indian sentiments could stem from the fact that in the two general elections since democracy, Indians have twice voted overwhelmingly for White parties. "I've heard it on many occasions that Indians should get a thrashing like in 1949 because they're siding with Whites during elections," he says.
"That's why I formed an alliance with the ANC, to get rid of the anti-Indian sentiment," reveals Rajbansi.
The Chatsworth politician admits recent events, such as the attack by Africans at a shopping mall, and the wave of anti-Indian sentiments is cause for gloom. However, he insists he's involved in projects, in partnership with the ANC, to forge better relations.
"Decades ago during a visit to Africa, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru sent a message to Indians that they should work with Africans. The Minority Front and the ANC are attempting to improve relations through joint rallies and public meetings," he says.
Tholsiah "T.P." Naidoo, community leader and director of the Indian Academy of South Africa, says Indians were just as disenfranchised as Africans, and worked hard for all they had achieved in South Africa. "Our forefathers built schools on meagre labourers' salaries and put a premium on education. The likes of Ngema should not grudge us for this but learn from us and accept that we too suffered under apartheid," he says.
Still, Naidoo labels Ngema as a "misdirected individual" and says "we give too much credence to idiots", and urges Indians to keep a level head and register with local police stations should there be any hint of trouble. "Some of our African leaders have been guilty of throwing the 1949 riots in our faces. This can only affect South Africa adversely in the future as nobody wants this country to look like Zimbabwe in 10 years," he says.
"Indians," Naidoo urges, "must show maturity and communicate or make friends with Africans. We are guilty of befriending only White people and must learn to stop living in isolation and extend the hand of friendship to Africans as well."
Despite agreeing to withdraw the song, a defiant Ngema says South Africans should accept that there were problems between Africans and Indians. "I believe that it is my role as an artist to mirror society and highlight the plight and tribulations of people on the ground. It is a fact that all the shops in the major towns and cities of KwaZulu-Natal are owned by Indians. It is a fact that Chatsworth and Phoenix get better services than Umlazi and KwaMashu," he claims.
Ashwin Desai, former academic and political commentator, dismisses Ngema's claims that Indians owned a majority of business in the province. "Last year 46,444 Asians (including Chinese and Japanese) applied for visas to come to our country compared to over 3,00,000 from the African continent. The notion that Indians are swamping the country is questionable.
"According to the song, Indians dominate the economy, but a report shows that 40 per cent of business on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange is foreign owned. Around the issue of facts, clearly he is found wanting," Desai says.
He adds: "I agree with Ngema, the situation needs attention, but he is far from being the right person to carry the majority of the Africans' aspirations. We need to honestly acknowledge our prejudices."
Earlier this week when Ngema failed to turn up for a radio debate with Desai after initially agreeing to do so, Desai was incensed. "He's a coward because he's not being honest about his intentions. He's a coward because he's not prepared to say there's a problem with unemployment, the government and the economy, and the reasons for this are because he's eating from the hands of government," Desai rages.
Ngema has had a colourful and controversial career. Recently, he received an award in the U.S. for his contribution to music. But it was his role in what became known as the Sarafina scandal that threatened to adversely affect his career when there were irregularities found in an R14-million contract he had with the National Department of Health in 1996.
Letters in newspapers and callers to radio station talk shows were divided, and while the song has South Africa talking, it has done little positive for race relations. One Indian, Ms. Sebastian, believes: "More racial crimes will occur because of the song; it fuels hatred."
And Desai concludes: "If the intent was dialogue and if it can be helped by an apology then he (Ngema) should do it."
Yogin Devan, a former journalist, says whatever were the real causes of the attack on the Indian people, the African blamed the Indian because of his life and activities as an Indian. "During the time when the African came into the city of Durban, he saw Indians travelling in limousines and owning large and impressive businesses in Grey Street. When the African wanted to see a movie, he had to patronise an Indian owned cinema. When he wanted to drink and dine in the city, he had to go to Indian owned hotels. He had to buy his food from Indian outlets."
Devan says while the new South Africa affords every citizen equal opportunities in terms of law, however, it would take a long time before the abyss is bridged, or at least narrowed, between the haves and the have-nots, the advantaged and the disadvantaged, the educated and the illiterate. "Already, the present day peaceful co-existence of Indians and Africans in the newly developed parts of Cato Manor is reminiscent of the inter-racial respect and harmony that permeated the area before 1949. This is great," he says.
Unfortunately, Ngema's song threatens to again make bad neighbours out of people who have been living in harmony.
Edwin Naidu is a journalist in South Africa and can be contacted via e-mail at [email protected]
Last edited by Alex Linder; February 23rd, 2008 at 01:28 PM.
|February 23rd, 2008||#28|
South Africa: Home Affairs Slams Racially Motivated Attacks
22 February 2008
The Department of Home Affairs has condemned the attacks on foreign nationals living in Laudium and Atteridgeville, west of Pretoria, which are believed to be racially motivated.
Nearly 300 foreign nationals were forced to flee the homes when squatters from the Itireleng informal settlement behind Laudium attacked them, torching their homes, belongings and a church earlier this week.
"Scores of foreigners have reportedly been attacked and chased out of their homes by armed locals in what can only be described as barbaric and thuggish behaviour," said the department on Thursday.
In a statement, the department warned that "such action will never be condoned in a country that upholds human rights for every individual residing in the country.
"We urge those concerned to refrain from such unbecoming behaviour. The law will not hesitate to deal decisively with those found to have been part of this despicable action."
Xenophobic attacks cannot be tolerated and are, thus, denounced, the statement said.
The victims of the attacks are currently being housed at temporary shelters and the department said will consult with relevant stakeholders to find a solution to probe the attacks.
Meanwhile heavily armed policemen are reported to be patrolling the area, escorting those families who have returned to their homes to collect what was left of their belongings.
It was also reported that on Wednesday night, police arrested 10 people on charges of public violence and they are to appear in court soon.
|February 23rd, 2008||#29|
[Christian Science Monitor fantasyland pumping of band Freshlyground]
South Africa tunes in to racial harmony
'Freshlyground,' an ethnically mixed band, fuses culture, language, and sound to unite listeners weary of crime headlines.
Possibly South Africa's most well-known up-and-coming band, Freshlyground is a breath of fresh air in a society struggling to put its ugly racial past behind it. Its seven members are as diverse as the society they come from, a group of blacks and whites who seem to have moved beyond race.
|February 23rd, 2008||#30|
South Africa: Government Graft Surges Dramatically
Business Day (Johannesburg)
22 February 2008
A total of 1042 cases of financial misconduct from the country's 14 national and 107 provincial departments were reported to the commission in the period 2006- 07, as compared with 771 in the previous year.
|February 23rd, 2008||#31|
Can Big Business and Media bring ANC and ESKOM in check?
By Mike Smith – Cape Town
The mining industry in South Africa came to a grinding halt this past week due to the South African Power supplier, Eskom, unable to deliver electricity to the mines. This has a major knock-on effect, because thousands of other smaller companies supply or deal with the mines and are dependent on the mines for their very survival.
Now I see the newspapers report that the CEO of Anglo American Corporation, Cynthia Carroll is on her way to South Africa to meet with Government Ministers and Eskom Representatives.
Anglo American is the second largest mining group in the world next to Rio Tinto. Anglo moved from South Africa to London in 1999 after it merged with the Luxembourg company, Minorco. They changed their entire corporate structure, which was imposed on them by the previous South African Government to prevent them from raping the country too much. Anglo’s move was received with consternation in South Africa, where it was seen as a political snub to President Nelson Mandela’s government and it was slammed by the big unions. Anglo American was instrumental in bringing the ANC to power in South Africa. Their previous leaders like Ogilvie Thompson (a former Rhodes Scholar) and Gavin W. H. Relly, frequently spoke out against the previous government and Relly led a business delegation in 1985 to go and speak to the then banned ANC terrorist organization. The combined assets of Anglo American and Minorco is estimated as $ 15 Billion; money that was earned off the backs of cheap Black Labour. Such is the hypocrisy of this company. Speaking out against Apartheid while at the same time enriching themselves with virtual black slave labour. Ironically Anglo has been slapped with a lawsuit to pay reparations to victims for “upholding” Apartheid. They are basically sued for everything they have ($20 Billion).
Cynthia Carroll, is known in South Africa as the “Queen (BEE)Keeper” for meeting all Anglo’s Black Economic Empowerment goals, but it is in Alaska where she really made a name for herself. There she is known as “Cyanide Cynthia” the World’s Biggest Scrooge.
She is reported by Forbes magazine to be the seventh most powerful woman in the world. What she and her buddies from Northern Dynasty want to do is to build the world’s biggest dam in Alaska so she can mine stacks of gold to gild her mirrors and toilet seats with. The area where she wants to do it is prime Sockeye Salmon habitat. These Salmon needs to swim upstream to lay their eggs. With the dam in the way the Salmon will never reach their spawning grounds. Bears, Fish Eagles and Native Humans who rely on the Salmon will obviously be affected, but the cyanide used to extract the gold from the rock will destroy the Salmon population completely. Anglo-American and Northern Dynasty plan to spend $100 million this year on consultants, environmental impact statements, and bribing the locals (or, as they put it, “getting the social license”).
Does she give a flying hoot? Does Anglo American Corporation worry about sensitive eco systems? No. All they care about is selling their gold and platinum to Rappers to hang around their necks as “Bling”.
Anglo American (De Beers) and Consolidated Goldfields were started by Cecil John Rhodes and his South African Company and it is now controlled by the Oppenheimer family; one of the world’s ten richest families. An offshoot of the SA Company was LonRho or the London Rhodesian Company, who have been raping the African continent for almost a century. Rhodes was also the one who instigated the Anglo Boer war against the two Boer Republics. A war that saw genocide and the deaths of tens of thousands of this tiny white nation and also the introduction of concentration camps of Lord Kitchener, where twenty-seven-thousand Boer women and children died; all for the greed of gold and diamonds.
Before the transfer of power to the ANC terrorist regime in 1994, the Oppenheimers controlled about 80% of all the stock on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Today, after the blacks got their “Freedom” they still control almost 80% of all the stock on the JSE.
It is common knowledge amongst South African journalists worthy of the name, that Mandela never took any decisions without consulting the Oppenheimers. The Oppenheimers also control the media in South Africa through various front companies such as the Argus Group which was sold to Tony O’Reilly’s Independent Group of Ireland (1994) and Caxton/CTP.
In 1993 Mandela spent Christmas at the Nassau Holiday home of Tony O’Reilly in the Bahamas. Tony O’Reilly also owns major shares in British News Paper Publishing (43%), Australian Provincial Newspapers (55%), in New Zealand (44%) of Wilson and Horton, and (25%) of Irish Press Newspapers. I am not even considering his interests in Radio and television, the point I like to make is that Tony O’Reilly is also a big buddy of Robert Mugabe. In 1992 he entertained Mugabe at his mansion in County Kildare. He considers the current South Africa a “Modern Day miracle”.
You will note that I refer to him as Tony O’Reilly and not “Sir” Anthony O’Reilly, because Irish citizens aren’t supposed to have titles.
But Anglo American was not the only big corporation who supported the ANC terrorists. Let us not forget that the Dutch oil giant, Shell, donated an entire tower block in the centre of Johannesburg to the ANC. Shell, BP and Anglo America refused to testify before the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 1997 to explain their links with the Apartheid government.
However. In countries suffering from civil war such as Colombia and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Anglo American continues to profit from the conflict and associated human rights abuses which condemn local communities to insecurity and terror. In the Philippines and South Africa, local communities threatened with Anglo American mines have faced severe repression in their fight to stay on their land. In Ghana and Mali, local communities see little of the huge profits being made by AngloGold Ashanti but suffer from fear and intimidation and from the damaging impact of its mines on their environment, health and livelihoods.
In September 2006, Colombian mining leader Alejandro Uribe was assassinated. Uribe had been leading the community’s peaceful opposition to AngloGold Ashanti’s mining in the region and was seeking an investigation into the killing of another mining union leader the month before.
I am however very interested to know what is going to be discussed between Cynthia Carroll and the ANC/Eskom delegation. I wish I was a fly on the wall.
Remember these are companies who have MONEY and who hire private armies such as MPRI and Blackwater to “Guard their interests”. These private armies are not scared of any government’s troops. They simply offer them employment for a hundred times what they earn in their own countries and redeploy them in Iraq or Afghanistan.
This could get VERY interesting. As Anglo-American/De Beers’s profits are being affected, expect their liberal do-gooder stance to fly out the window faster than you could say “Mercenary”. Maybe now you understand why the South African ANC Government has introduced draconian Anti-Mercenary laws.
Interesting times indeed. Maybe these Multi Billion Dollar Corporations will realize that when they supported the ANC terrorists, they betted on the wrong horse. Maybe the previous government wasn’t so bad after all. It will be interesting to see how they scramble around trying to do damage control after their darling ANC buddies stuffed up their profits and business interests in South Africa.
They know exactly where they can go and find sympathy…
|February 23rd, 2008||#32|
ESKOM and Electricity: The Truth
By The Real Realist
Sitting comfortably in my exile, I looked on aghast as the very worst of my predictions came true over the weekend, when Eskom failed to supply the mining industry with sufficient power to keep operations running. My mind flashed back to a story I wrote on the original ‘Why South Africa is Crap’ blog, which preceded this one, about when I visited Cape Town and was handed an ‘Eskom passport’ telling me how to save power and when power cuts would be etc. etc.
So I can’t say I was particularly shocked – I mean, after all, who would really have expected anything else? Who, apart from the demented liberals, would have ever thought that South Africa would end up any different from the rest of Africa? Not me.
Chatting by phone to Whites still in South Africa, I was struck by three things: firstly, their passive acceptance of it (“we will get by’) — for which I just feel disgust; secondly their crazy idea that buying generators will help them out of this mess (you clots, what happens when the petrol and diesel supplies become so intermittent that you can’t power your generators. And Don’t think it won’t happen, it will); and thirdly, the most astonishing thing (in fact, the only thing about this whole affair which did astonish me) was the claim that the power outages were occurring “because South Africa’s economy is booming and power production could not keep up.”
Now that one floored me. Crikey, of all the strange excuses I have ever heard, that one was the best.
The reality is that Eskom’s production has been dropping, directly because they have fired all the competent Whites and appointed Blacks – or, in many cases, no-one, in some sort of strange belief that skilled Whites were not necessary to keep things going. Hau, the machines, they will work without the White racists, was obviously the rationale.
So, even if the economy was growing (which I strongly doubt, given the simple unemployment figures which continue to increase year upon year, not exactly a healthy sign) is it actually a case of Eskom not being able to keep up?
There are two aspects to this question: firstly, if the scenario were true, then the crisis is due to Affirmative Action incompetence in government and Eskom (surprise, surprise). They got rid of Whitey, thought hau, now we have the money, and the machines she works, and that was that. Now of course, everything has gone to crap, just like the rest of Africa.
But, and this is the second, and most telling part, the reality is that in fact Eskom’s production has not been increasing, but rather declining!
On the 1 February last year - during the maintenance cycle - Eskom’s output was more than 32,000mW. But last Thursday – the day before the mines went bang – Eskom’s output was 27,000mW – because large numbers of power generating stations were out of service. The total capacity loss was over 9,000mW, enough to power three cities the size of Johannesburg.
In other words, the reality is that Eskom is not, as the lunatics want to claim, “unable to keep up with growth” but, actually, is unable to even maintain production, and the decline in output is the real cause of the outages, Now, go figure.
As shown on Carte Blanche, even the claim that the reason why the power stations were out was because of “wet coal” (bizarre that this has never happened before, it must be something I missed, I mean I am sure it has rained before. Yes? Or did I miss it?) is rubbish, as it was clear from the Carte Blanche visuals that there was simply no coal either in reserve at the power stations, or none was being delivered because the roads had fallen apart and Eskom was paying too little to make it economically viable for private companies to deliver.
So where does this leave South Africa? Answer: deeper in the sh*t, quicker than what even I as a hard boiled cynic, thought possible. They say it will take ten years of this situation before they recover – well, sunshines, let me tell you there will be no industries left in South Africa is this carries on for another ten years. Who are they trying to kid?
Last edited by Alex Linder; February 23rd, 2008 at 07:46 PM.
|February 23rd, 2008||#33|
Saturday, February 23, 2008
History repeats itself
By a pissed off Eli the Bearded
Feb 2008, Pretoria
A whole week rushed by with endless news flashes trumpeting corruption, out of control crime, lame budget speeches, the sorry state of arsezania, and the usual reports of complete third world fucking idiots trying to run a once first world country.
I decided to travel back in time and take a peak at a truly sad event that happened a long time ago. Have a read and see if anything has changed since then?
In February 1838, Piet Retief and 70 men (known then as Voortrekkers and hereinafter referred to as Trekkers) made the fatal mistake to try and negotiate with a zulu SPIES GOOIER, the brain dead tyrant known as Dingaan, to obtain some land. (Note, they did not just take it right?)
Piet left approximately 445 Trekkers behind, their wagons spread among the shores of the rivers Bloukrans, Boesmans, Buffels and the Mooi. This was in the region of the small towns known today as Estcourt, Colenso and Weenen.
These Trekkers had no reason to fear anything, except wild animals like Lions and Elephants. Neither were they on full alert. Usually they were alert, expecting the normal marauding SPIES GOOIERS trying to steal, murder, rape and pillage. (Like they still are still doing today I might add).
This time they were relaxed, they were camping out, the women teaching the children, and the men out hunting, assured by Piet Retief, that the tyrant Dingaan harbors no ill intent towards the Trekkers. (Just like Dan Roodt and Steve Stofsuier trust the zulu JZ … mmm)
What these poor Trekkers did not know, was that a certain Captain Allan F. Gardiner, and his ilk from the royal british moffie army, encouraged Dingaan with English “bling-bling” to kill the Trekker (Much like “Kill the Farmer, Kill the Boer today). The Trekkers, he propagated, were “deserters”, and “deserters” deserves to be killed (And we was too big a fucking queer to try and do it himself even with the aid of his moffie army).
So, thus encouraged, Dingaan instructed his SPIES GOOIER impi’s to attack the Trekkers on a night with a “dark moon” and to “devour” every single man, women and child. (mmm… sounds like a shit load full of liberals in the west encouraging the ANC in the same way prior to 1994)
According to history, there was a missionary Owen, (yet another dumbass libby that tried to save the third world) who described in his diary how on the night of the 7th, after Dingaan killed Piet Retief and his 70 men in cold blood, the impi’s were pulling into the zulu kraal, or informal settlement called Ungundgundlovu at the time. Here they started to sing, dance and chant brain dead war songs the whole night long with pleasant phrases such as “kill the white dogs” (Yip, the toy toy).
It comes as no surprise then when the president of the ANC starts singing “bring me my machine gun” in public today! The only difference was that at the time, Dingaan and his army had no fucking clue what a machine gun was. So they were singing “bring me my spear” instead. Years later, the whitey introduced the AK47 to the SPIES GOOIER which is another sad story in itself.
OK, let us get back to this story then. The fat and useless slap gat, and did I mention the brain dead tyrant Dingaan, then commanded his two chief generals, Ndedla and Dambuza, to start gathering the whole zulu army on the shores of the Tugela river. For days, the SPIES GOOIER soldiers streamed in and outnumbering the poor 455 Trekkers thousands fold.
Recce SPIES GOOIERS were dispatched at night to spy on the unsuspected Trekkers waiting for their leader to return with the “good” news.
On Saturday morning the 17th of February 1838, just after midnight, the Trekkers woke up in a place worst than hell!
The most barbaric attacks occurred on the shores of the rivers Bloukrans and Moordspruit. Wagons were overturned and burned. Small children were swung by their legs and their skulls cracked against the wagon wheels. The bigger children were slashed, ripped and slaughtered, and body parts flung into thorn trees. Babies were thrown into the air and caught on the end of a spear. Pregnant women were gutted and even the fetus was not spared from slaughter. (The same methods can be seen at farm murders today)
The scared to death and panic stricken women and young girls tried to hide inside the lower cargo areas of the wagons to no avail, they were brutally speared, and their blood dripped through the wagon floors onto the grass. Still not good enough, the zulu’s senselessly gutted all their victims. They believed that the sole should “escape the body”. I don’t feel like elaborating on the rapes. Not even the animals were spared, they were killed and gutted as well. (House invasions follow the same trend)
Sarel Cilliers, another Trekker in the region caught wind of the shit that went down. He took FIVE men and started an effective resistance. Another Trekker with a pair named Manie Maritz, also gathered a few men, and together, they unleashed their wrath of the Afrikaner on the SPIES GOOIERS. By noon the same day, they had the cowardly zulu “warriors” running like scared baboons for cover.
Sarel Cilliers had no idea that in 200 hundred years time, the same shit will happen and be endlessly repeated on the same ground he stood on. He removed his hat, he threw his arms into the air, he stared at the heavens and cried “O God, will the blood of the infant ever be revenged?’
|February 23rd, 2008||#34|
SA is going down, says Mbeki's brother
February 22 2008 at 12:21PM
A controversial BBC documentary portraying South Africa as being on a downward spiral is an accurate portrayal of the country and the ANC is the main destabilising factor, leading intellectual Moeletsi Mbeki has said.
Mbeki, brother of President Thabo Mbeki, told the Cape Argus that South Africans had to face the fact the rest of the world had reason to be "very concerned" about the direction in which the country was moving.
Mbeki also criticised new ANC president Jacob Zuma for "bad-mouthing" his own country's political and justice system in a foreign country.
Zuma claimed in court papers in Mauritius this week that fraud charges against him were part of a political move against him.
In court, Zuma accused President Mbeki and suspended director of public prosecutions Vusi Pikoli of being the chief suspects in a conspiracy against him.
Moeletsi Mbeki, who is deputy chairperson of the SA Institute of International Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand, said: "Here we have the president of the ANC, the possible future president of the country, claiming that the 16 charges of fraud against him are part of a political campaign to keep him out of office.
"There are no such things as political trials in this country, but he goes and says so in a foreign country, creating a bad impression of his own country's justice system.
"The world looks at this country, they hear things like that, they see that the ruling party's president is going to appear in court on 16 charges of fraud and what should they think?"
Moeletsi Mbeki was responding to the debate that has raged following the scathing documentary No More Mandelas, which was aired on the BBC and on M-Net's Carte Blanche on Sunday.
|February 23rd, 2008||#35|
Pics from "Why South Africa Sucks" and "Death of Johannesburg" blogs
Greg, be glad the pics TRR took are from 2005/6. Those are the "before" pictures. You don't want to see the "after" pictures in 2008.
There wouldn't be enough room on TRR's blog to post the latest scenes of grime and decay.
Last edited by Alex Linder; February 23rd, 2008 at 02:50 PM.
|February 23rd, 2008||#36|
"Why is it, the the Carlton Hotel - once Johannesburg's finest 5 STAR hotel - where the ANC held their victory celebration after the 1994 elections, has closed its doors? Located in the heart of the CBD and servicing the financial district it is unable to operate. Why?"
|February 23rd, 2008||#37|
[Comment from South Africa Sucks blog]
Brothers and sisters. I┤m going to tell you a little story.
Some of you might remember that old fellow who owned Durban City football club, Norman "the silver fox" Elliot. Well, in about 1980/81 he rang me and asked me if i would like to accompany him to a cocktail party for the football hiracy to be held at the Wits grounds in Joburg. As I was at a loose end, I accepted his invitation, and as we were about to go into the building, he turned to me and said with a smile on his lips, "under no circumstances are you to disagree with anything said to you, otherwise we might not make it out again". I wasn┤t sure what he was on about until we walked into the room and I saw that it was overflowing with K4┤s. Other than the barman, we were the only other white dudes there.
As the evening wore on the niggas got drunker by the minute and started abusing the barman when he couldn┤t supply them with more grogg quickly enough. The crowning glory came when the snacks were brought out. Well, they weren┤t actually snacks, but rather hot dogs. Man you should have seen it. The waiter had the tray snatched out of his hands as the kaffirdogs fought for the food, with hotdogs flying in all directions. The ones that ended up on the floor where grabbed up and wolfed down. It was as if these fatcats (because I am talking about wealthy niggas here, not poor crackers) had never seen food in their lives before. When we were leaving, there were nigga┤s standing on the grounds hallowed lawns, pissing all over the place. I remember Norman saying to me as we passed a drunk nigga bitch squating down with her panties around her ankles, "so, what do you think?" All I could do was shake my head in disbelief.
" The best part", he said, " Is that these baboons are going to be running this country one day".
Never, I thought.
|February 23rd, 2008||#38|
Self-rated ***** 5 Star
Join Date: Dec 2007
Predictive Programming - South Africa: The School Pledge
This is the pledge that is to be read daily by school kids, as proposed by the ANC government, reads as follows:
|February 24th, 2008||#39|
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ANC Goverment cannot even manage their own finances - much less the Entire Nation
Article in IOL news today bleats with hands a-wringing - ANC government officials are debt ridden which support the reason why we are seeing such a large spike in recent months on property and personal vehicles being repossessed in our wonderful blood nation. How in the world can the ANC even think of managing a country which is on the brink of anarchy and self destruction when they cannot even manage their own overpaid and undeserved salaries at the expense of the hard working tax payers of South Africa. What a bunch of idiots. I hope the banks show no mercy when they take back what rightfully belongs to the tax payers.
(heh-heh... even the mainstream media is getting pissed off with these ANC clowns)
|February 24th, 2008||#40|
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TNB / TKB / TMB: Accusations fly in stressed Mbeki cabinet
The two centres of power are straining President Thabo Mbeki's cabinet, with Trevor Manuel, the finance minister, accusing his colleagues of buying parliamentary support, while Charles Nqakula, the safety and security minister, is accused of defying his boss by appeasing the ANC. At the ANC parliamentary caucus this week, Manuel turned on his cabinet colleagues, accusing them of using patronage to subdue ANC members from calling them to account.
The day after his budget speech on Wednesday, in which he did a balancing act by appeasing his ANC bosses while getting the nod from the opposition parties, Manuel addressed the party caucus. An MP at the caucus meeting said: "Manuel said the government coffers have a surplus because departments are failing to spend. He said ANC resolutions had not been implemented because ministers were using patronage to get the support of members. Because of these relationships, members were not able to hold ministers to account."
Tensions in Mbeki's government, and the strains of running the country with two centres of power became more evident this week amid uncertainty and confusion about the future of the Scorpions. Mbeki was overheard saying that his criminal justice ministers had "got it wrong". This was after Nqakula told parliament that the Scorpions would be dissolved and incorporated into the police, contradicting Mbeki. This has been seen as Nqakula trying to appease the new ANC leadership, led by Zuma.
This week Zuma told a Mauritian court that the corruption charges against him were part of a conspiracy led by Mbeki's government.
Senior officials of the ANC national executive and of the government have accused Nqakula of disregarding his president and undermining the parliamentary process. Trevor Bloem, Nqakula's spokesperson, would not comment, saying: "We don't comment on what nameless, faceless sources are saying."
Nqakula has infuriated opposition party leaders by not spelling out the parliamentary process. Mbeki, in his state of the nation speech, made only a vague, ambiguous reference to the Scorpions. Nqakula, according to a colleague on the national executive committee who cannot be named, was trying to appease the ANC.
"It is difficult when some of us are concerned about our political career. That is why there is confusion. Even the cabinet is confused," said the committee member. Nqakula's "over-zealous" actions, said the committee member, could lead to the formation of a "half-baked, not-thought-through" and "inefficient" anti-organised-crime unit.