|Tel: 033 4132735
26 November 2008
Bail refused in murder trial
Bail was refused to murder accused Jerryl Chanda when he appeared in the Greytown Magistrate's Court on charges of the murder of Keseri Khan.
It is alleged that on the evening of 23rd October, this year, Keseri Khan was sitting outside his house with a group of friends. He was approached by the accused and an argument broke out between the two. Chanda then suddenly drew out a knife and stabbed Keseri in his left eye.
The injured man was rushed to Greytown Hopsital then transferred to Albert Luthuli Hospital where he died on 2nd November. Chanda was arrested and charged with murder. He appeared in the Greytown Magistrate's Court on 20th November and was refused bail. The case has been remanded.
Pythons are protected but it would appear that many people in the community are not aware that it is illegal to kill this somewhat on the large and long side reptile.
On being told by Muden station commander, Captain Mncube that three had been killed in that area, Captain Marie Naicker of Greytown SAPS, who is an Honorary Parks Board officer, requested that the message be put out in the area that, as pythons are protected they were not to be killed.
On Friday Captain Mncube phoned to say that a python had been found by residents on Ledger Mission in Muden and that he was being "guarded" to be kept alive.
Captain Naicker contacted Greytown's snake catcher, Nico Herbst and they went to Muden where the four and half metre long python was lying, quite close to the houses. The reptile was so long they were unable to get it into an 80kg bag and it eventually was put on the back of Nico's bakkie to be relocated in a safe place.
Captain Naciker told the Greyown Gazette that he was most appreciative of the action taken by the Muden Station Commissioner in alerting the community. Anyone who comes across a python is requested not to kill but to phone Captain Naicker on 082 926 3254 to arrange for the catching and subsequent release of this protected species.
SECOND HAND GOODS
An early warning for anyone dealing in second hand goods of any type that their licenses are due for renewal by 31st December in terms of the Act. Anyone who does not renew the license is not permitted to trade. If this requirement is ignored the trader is liable to a fine of R10 000.
For further information on licence renewal contact Captain Naicker on 082 926 3254.
POLICEMAN DIES IN CRASH
One of the top men in the New Hanover Police 44 year old Inspector Dillon Sewpersahd was tragically killed on Friday night in a car crash.
His shocked colleagues said that he had been driving to his home in Cool Air just after 10 p.m. when he apparently lost control of his vehicle, The vehicles hit a rock on the side of road and somersaulted -he was killed instantly.
The Inspector who had been art New Hanover police station for 25 years was highly respected and admired for his standard of work.
He leaves his wife and two grown up children.
FROM THE DITCH
There was a certain type of orderly chaos on the battlefield last Friday..what with all the casualties from previous skirmishes and lots of NCO's away there remained four and two thirds of Boer units and five British squads lined up.
Erika Fischer and Kolonel Alex Gevers proved to be the best of the Boers, bundling out Major General Mac McIntyre's valiant troops 16-6, while Major Jack
Mason and his wily cousin Sam the Scotsman teamed up with Wally Kohne, to clean up the best score of 17-5 against Charlie Warden's team.
Bob Simpson"s team beat Cherry Wulfsohn's lot 10 -3 while Major Paul Buss and his team succumbed 13-8 to the Boers.
The fifth battle was a Royal affair when Sannie Balzer, Omo Dinkelman and Karin Cordy took on Corporal Bryan Paul, Pam Paul and Recruit Brandon Wheeler in a match that swung this way and that, with the score 9-6 and one end to play. Behold the shot of the day when Sannie stormed through the strong British lead to pick up 4 and win 10 -9.
Much revenge took place in the canteen, and the campfires burned bright, as many stayed to enjoy their meals. Only one jaffle iron was in use, but there is talk that more of these wonderful irons will be in the fire next week.
Saturday turned out to be a pleasant prelude of bowls before the rugby.The ladies who were last year's trips champions united -Erika Fisher, Judy Ellman and Omo Dinkelman played a very tight game against the men - Ernie Weyks, Herbert Balzer and Bryan Paul. The scores were 6-6 on the 6 th; 9-9 on the 9th;10 all on the 11th;15-15 on the 15th and ended 18-18 on the 18th!
There is a very exciting time ahead for young local riders with Caroline Minnaar's Polocrosse Camp from 8th to 12th December and the Dunboy Gymkhana on Saturday 13th December.
Caroline’s Camp is an annual affair and is always fully booked. The Camp covers all aspects of polocrosse with confidence on horse-back as the central theme. Many of her pupils go on to do well in polocrosse and a number will be involved in international age-group tests next year. This is a wonderful way to start the school holidays with the gymkhana on Saturday where they can display their skills.
Many older residents will be delighted to see the return of gymkhana to the area. In the past there were regular gymkhanas at Greytown, Rietvlei, Kranskop, Came and Noodsberg. This is a first for Dunboy and will be organized by the Umvoti Polocrosse Club. They will cater for Lead Rein to Open and will include all the usual gymkhana events. There will be limited catering and, with good weather, this promises to be an exciting day.
Past gymkhanas included some military events and some equipment, swords and lances, must still be available, probably collecting dust in someone’s garage. Should anyone be aware of the whereabouts of military gymkhana equipment, please let any polocrosse club member know and, who knows, military events may be included in future gymkhanas.
Further information on the Dunboy Gymkhana may be had from Jane O’Sullivan 0828202097.
'BROKEN WINDOW' SYNDROME
Those of us living in the vicinity of King Edward park are all to familiar
with the selfishness and total lack of respect on display just about every
day by the alcohol-soaked individuals who seem to deem it their right to
make as much noise regardless of the hour.
Drinking in public and playing
load music have sadly become the norm. The degradation of the erstwhile
rugby club building continues on a daily basis. Broken windows, shattered
doors and vandalized fixtures bear mute testimony to the anti-social mindset
of these hooligans. Fixtures are systematically cannibalized and vagrants
are clearly using the structure to sleep in.
A stroll around the perimeter
of the park reveals random landmines of human excrement, contraceptives,
used syringes, broken bottles and littering of staggering proportions.
Upkeep and basic maintenance of the grounds is apparently not very high on
the agenda, although credit must be given to the Municipal cleaners who do
tend to clean up the most visible areas on Monday mornings after the weekend
soccer matches and festivities.
In the early 1990s, the mayor of New York set out to prove that his city
which for years had been assumed to be too crime-ridden to be managed—was in
fact, manageable. The “Broken Windows” thesis posits that something as
simple as a building with a broken window signals abandonment, a lax
attitude toward property, and therefore an absence of respect for the law.
The “broken window” is the first step in a neighborhood’s slow decline and
deterioration. Over time, other evidence of decay shows up: more broken
windows, trash accumulation, anti-social behaviour. Law abiding citizens
start to feel vulnerable and begin to withdraw. They become less willing to
intervene to maintain public order or address physical signs of
To counter this, protection services were encouraged to react to reports of
a broken window, trivial as it may seem. The end result was that the
criminally minded soon realised that they would not get away with anything.
If they were to be pursued for even trivial offences, what chances would
they have for more serious crimes? The reduction in the crime rate is a
matter of record; it is currently one of the safer cities in the U.S.A.
It is therefore with a sense of hope that I feel compelled to write a
message of appreciation at what appears to be a change in mindset of both
Municipal officialdom and policing services in Greytown. On the initiative
of our new Municipal Manager Hamilton Ntshangase, a meeting was recently
held between senior Municipal and Protection Services personnel and Dieter
Meyer and myself representing the residents in the park area. The lengthy
meeting, held in-situ at the park was most productive and we all agreed on
certain steps which needed to be implemented in order to improve what is
clearly an untenable situation.
We look forward with keen anticipation to the roll out of each proposal and
are confident that most of the unacceptable behaviour will be kept in check
once the work is done. I’m sure that our under-resourced Police Service will
be especially grateful, with an anticipated reduction in the number of phone
calls from irate and over-stressed residents!
In a press release to the Greytown Gazette Pradeep Ramlall, of AB Projects, the consultants appointed by DWAF to undertake a survey of Umvoti water supply states as follows
"Greytown has experienced more than its fair share of problems with respect to the supply of treated water to each of the customers in town, which has reached critical levels this year. The amount of water produced very day from the water treatment works amounts to, on average, about 4,5 million litres, and over 1,5 million litres of this is lost every day through leaks and wasteful water use practices.
The uMzinyathi District Municipality has, together with the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry and uThukela Water, embarked on the implementation of an accelerated programme aimed at increasing the operational efficiency of the current water distribution system, with the objective of decreasing the amount of losses and leaks from pipes and raising the awareness of water conservation.
A recently completed and approved study identified that the level of physical losses from the reticulation system could be reduced by as much as 800 000 litres per day and this intervention shall be commencing this week. This shall be carried out by the following:
- 1. Implementation of pressure management to reduce real/physical loss volumes by between 500 000 and 600 000 litres per day. This entails the reduction of pressure in the system during off-peak hours which reduces the rate of leakage without compromising on current level of service and fire-fighting requirements. The pressure reduction will be carried out in two distinct phases, the first of which shall commence in the beginning of December 2008;
- 2. An active leak detection and repair programme that will locate and repair all visible and non-visible leaks, resulting in an estimated reduction in leaks between 200 000 and 300 000 litres per day. This shall commence immediately;
- 3. Water conservation/demand regulation awareness and consumer education to reduce wasteful water use practices, which shall commence immediately.
The reduction of leaks and wasteful water use practices will take a concerted effort from all involved. Technical experts have been procured to assist with the pressure management and leak detection intervention, as well as the education and awareness campaigns, but the residents of Greytown will also need to be involved in making a difference. Although the technical assistance will be completed before the end of March 2009, the continued success of sustaining the projected levels of lower leakage from the system will rely on all residents contributing to extending the efficient use of water by reporting all leaks and using water wisely. Leaks can be reported to Rashnie on 033 413 9100.
It is important to mention that this project is in tandem with the Greytown Bulk Scheme i.e. replacing of existing line and finding an alternate source of water supply (awaiting results from Geo-hydrology section from Dwaf HO to determine borehole locations) so as to supplement Lake Merthley
To start with congratulations to Shaun Dicken on his lunker caught in a local dam. The bass weighed in at an astonishing 6.6kg which is 400gm heavier than the current S.A record held by Julian van Zuydam which weighed in at 6.29kg. Shaun measured his fish at 89cm which is a huge bass and it was taken on watermelon fluke
Continuing from last week we will have a look at time of day and weather conditions. Although it seems like an arbitrary fact, the time of day is very influential in the targeting of big bass. The better times to fish in are the low light hours ie. early morning and late afternoon. apart from the fact that bass eyes are lidless and affected by light conditions, big bass have become accustomed to less vulnerability during low light hours. They are able to feed without interruption from humans birds or reptiles.Take also into account overcast conditions where the same factors apply.
Continuing with the low light theme, bass will find low light conditions during bright light hours. They will position themselves in shaded areas like drop offs, plant cover or structure where they are also able to ambush their prey. If there is no such cover in the dam you are fishing try moving to deeper waters and fish through the different depth layers. When fishing low light hours especially in the shallows, baits to try are top water baits eg toads, Zara Spook, poppers etc.
If the bass have moved under cover during the heat of the day, try a weightless plastic worm or fluke. In sunny conditions in deeper water crank baits, weighted plastics or jigs can do the trick as these will get you down into the structure.
Some of the best fishing conditions are during overcast, slightly drizzly weather, with a slight breeze disrupting the water surface and the water temp is slightly higher than air temp. The two best seasons to target bass are the tuning seasons, spring and autumn when conditions are temperate rather than too hot or too cold.
During spring big fish need to replenish their strength after the spawn and often go into a time of high feeding, as too during autumn when big bass are fattening up for the winter.
Keep in mind also to fish with the sun at your back when fishing from shore, and with the sun facing you when fishing from boat because you will then be targeting the shade areas where the big bass are likely to hang out. Next week more on structure cover and depth.
Don't forget the competition at St Catheryn's on Sunday 6th December starting at 6 am to 5pm all anglers welcome entrance R40.00 per person bank or boat. Till next time keep it in the water. Any queries regarding the Angling club or the comp can be directed to Edge on 0825548235
St Cathryn's News.
Farmers Agri- Care Monthly Mug was played on Saturday 22 November and it was good to see a medium sized field turning out. The course has greened up after all the rain, and once again the fight is on to tame the grass
Results as follows:
1st : Liekie Steyn nett 67 oco
2nd : Mo Wulfsohn
3rd: Peter Rommelspacher nett 68 oco
4th : Kevin Williams.
Captains Putter: Sbonelo Khumalo.
Nearest to Pin 9/18th:Mbongeni Khumalo.
Results of the Grand Prix will be announced at the AGM after the Farmers Agri-Care Monthly Mug to be played on Saturday 13 December.. Although the race is over !!
On Sunday 14 December we will play the Mug of Mugs and all Captains Putters of the year are requested to caddie for the Mug of Mug players. ( Some players were on both sides of the board -- which means you can caddy for your self!)
Saturday 29 November will be the Prosurvey golf day, and will be played as a Better ball Stableford competition and we will be hosting 8 Golfers from the Free State. There will be some good golf played -- that's for sure.
A friendly reminder to all members that Membership subs are now due.We are happy to announce that the only increase for membership is for KZNGU and NGN CARD. These subs are due by 31 Decembers we need to pay over the membership to KZNGU and NGN. Please contact Cathy regarding membership as a Christmas present. A gift that lasts all year!
Our family golf day venue is between the berg and the coast on the 28th of December and on this day wives and families are invited to accompany us for a shopping spree while we battle it out on the course, and then we all go out for lunch. Last year we visited the Simbithi golf course. This day is open to any other golfer, please contact the club should you like to play. To play please contact Piet on 033 4441945 or 083 269 1661.
who is Aya Jana?
My son and his family have lived and worked in the Greytown for some years now, which has made me a regular visitor to your town. On the road to his home is a large sign indicating the way to the graves of Sarie Marais and Aya Jana.
I am sure most South Africans know the name Sarie Marais from the song, which some told me was adopted by the British Royal Marines a century ore so ago as one of their marching songs, but I always presumed she was a myth, But Aya Jana I had never heard of, nor any of the local people I have asked. I have often, as I did this morning, taken a walk from my son's house to the grave site, and, as always, have wondered why it is so neglected. Broken stone work, and overrun with weeds. There are four graves, two of which have headstones and from the inscriptions it would seem that they are mother and daughter, both having the name Sarie Marais. The other two are just stone cairns and have no headstones.
I would be pleased to hear from you who Aya Jana is, and why, if this is a historical site, absolutely no maintenance is carried out there.It would seen that if someone is important to warrant a National Road sign, surely they deserve a headstone on their grave.
Laurence C. Gorzellok
Thanks to Savvy of Greytown Museum for providing the following information:
Ayah Jana is said to have been orphaned at a battle between the Voortrekkers and Mzilikazi in 1836. She was adopted by the Mare family, uncle and aunt of Sarie and brought up as one of their children.She escaped with her life at the Battle of Bloukraans when Piet Retief and his men were attacked and killed.
The 7 year old was seriously wounded but escaped by faking death while being prodded with assegais.She was nursed back to health by the Mare family. She was honoured at the historical Voortrekker vow festival in 1912 when she planted a tree to commemorate the event and sat with all the VIPS. It is said she stayed with the Mare family until she died at the age of 93 and is buried in a corner of the family graveyard.
There appears to be no information available as where she was born and lived until the age of 7.
FROM THE COURTS
Weather permitting, the annual Wimpy Farmers vs. Town tournament will take place this Sunday, with players requested to sign in at 0800.
Contrary to popular opinion, all the farmers do live on farms, contribute handsomely to food and paper security of the nation, and have even been so kind as to lend a farmer to bolster the town team.
Town have won this event 8 times in the last 13 years with the farmers having cleaned up on 5 occasions, so they are keen to reduce this deficit. Excellent tennis is expected for the Wimpy event, which is a great get together of all local players.
Ladies are reminded to please bring a plate of morning snacks, and a delicious Wimpy lunch will be served.
christmas garden club meeting
Garden Club's Christmas meeting, was as always,thoroughly enjoyed by the many present. Held on 11th November at the home of Hillary and Gordon le Roux where the gracious home and lovely garden was much appreciated by all.
Guest speaker was Lou Kelly of "Green with Envy" in Durban. Her talk and demonstrations fitted in with the Christmas theme as she showed various techniques for wrapping presents using the most exquisite ribbons from India.. Her ideas with a difference for table decorations also created a lot of interest. One of Lou's specialities is "Pot au Fleur"and she showed how to achieve a striking floral arrangement with relatively little work.
Garden Club's next meeting is in February, on Tuesday 10th at Jenny Cowie's home when she will give a talk on waterwise gardening.
In the meantime, a Happy Christmas and flower filled 2009 to you all.
wartburg christmas market
One of the most popular craft and food fairs is the Christmas market or Weinachtsmark in Wartburg which will be held this Saturday,.29th November in the adjoining grounds of Wartburg Lutheran Church and Orion Wartburg Hotel.. Held in aid of the Wartburg cancer comfort fund it is supported by fans from all over the Province.
Among the wide of goods on sale - traditional German Christmas decorations, needlework, table line, toys, pottery, woodcraft, Christmas biscuits, stollen,breads, jams etc.etc-.from a gift point of view its an easy way to do the Christmas shopping.
For anyone on diet -forget it. The most tempting tasty calorie filled cakes are on sale at the Kafeestube -after all the shopping a good place to relax with a coffee and cake. For those needing cooler relief - there is a bar
A variety of take away lunch foods are on sale and don't forget to view the magnificent old tractors being displayed by the Natal Vintage tractor club.
The fair opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 3 p.m. -there is plenty of parking in the grounds at R10 per vehicle.
KFA CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
Kranskop Farmers Association centenary celebrations came to a roaring successful end over the weekend of 18th and 19th October concluding a wide range of events throughout the year.
These included a popular under 21 soccer tournament held at Kranskop School - Trophies and cash prizes were donated. It was so successful that it is planned to be held annually.
Many past members, sponsors and members attended the annual general meeting. Keynote speaker was Lance Turvey a past President of the Association. Gunther Meyer was elected as president.
A successful golf day was organized at St. Cathryns Golf Estate. Visitors, sponsors, past members, members, greenkeeper and many Ortmanns filled the course playing a 3 ball American scramble.
Climax of the celebrations was an unforgettable gala dinnerheld in the HermannsburgChurch hall on 18th October. The hall was decorated in gold, black, red and white. An exhibition and decoration of parts of the hall, by Dieter Kohne added to the atmosphereof yester year.
A history display was also in the order of the day.The original Constitution was also on display as well as letters from 1920 and on. There were files on the KFA history Joyce van Rooyen has written over the years. It is being compiled onto a flashstick and a book will be published during 2009.
Among the invited guests were Robin Barnsley,President of Kwanalu, Prof and Mrs.Bouwer of UKZN., Mr and Mrs. K. Maharaj of F.N.B., Mr and Mrs. C. Klipp Chairman of the Board of Directors U.C.L., Mr and Mrs. A. van der Merwe President of New Hanover Farmers Association, Mr and Mrs. G. Jarvie President Umvoti Agricultural Society, and many more.
Gunter Meyer opened the evening with a thought provoking speech; Mr. Barnsley gave a very informative talk which appealed to everyone whilst Etzel Nuss had to compress 100 years into 15minutes...and did an excellent job too.
These talks were followed by some outstanding entertainment and an excellent dinner.
A lot of networking and reminiscing took place during the most enjoyable evening.
The thanksgiving service was held on Sunday morning at St Cathryn's It was lead by Rev Erlo Stegen with a moving message The Kwasizabantu Brass Band delighted all with their music
Everyone enjoyed lunch together and spent the afternoon relaxing.
The Kranskop Farmers Association has expressed its appreciation to the generous sponsors of the different events and
to the Celebration Committee for their hard work throughout.
It was a wonderful, memorable centenary...here's to the next 100 !
19 November 2008
MIGHTY MEN 2009
Shalom Ministries announced this week that Mighty Men 2009 will now be held on the 24th, 25th and 26th April at Shalom.
Registrations, camp bookings can be made online on www.mmc09.co.za-for information check the website
or phone 012-997-5410
Shalom has apologised for the date changes-the first was due to the proposed General Election date on 6th May and the second date change was due to the NAMPO agricultural show that would have overlapped
FROM THE COURTS
People were obviously very busy or very lazy this past weekend, as only two courts were in action on Saturday. Hopefully players are more committed this next weekend, as the club needs your presence to keep this vital sporting and social activity vibrant. An appeal is made to all players to please make the effort and come along for tennis on Saturday afternoons, even if you can only get there after 3pm.
The teams for the Farmers vs. Town tournament on the 30th Nov are being made up, again with a reduced number of couples due to outside commitments by players. Play starts at 08.30 sharp, so please be there at 08.00 to allow for a prompt start. Can lady players please provide a plate of eats for the morning.
The Angling Competition at Craigieburn Dam, although not too well attended, was definitely enjoyed by all who did attend.
Congratulations to Werner Redinger who weighed in a bag weight of 7.78Kg with three bass weighing in at 3.54 Kg, 2.30Kg and 1.94Kg. Second Prize went to John Lagerwall's team with a bag weight of 3.12Kg of which the heaviest fish was 1.52Kg. Third prize went to Eddie Meyer's team.
A lot of discussion centered around bait and bait presentation especially lesser used baits like Jigs (on which Werner caught his fish), fished deep. What also was of interest was the targeting of Big bass compared to just fishing for any bass. Over the next few issues I will concentrate on the targeting of Big fish.
Bass and this includes BIG bass are found where certain conditions are prevalent, namely STRUCTURE, COVER, FOOD and CONDITIONS. Starting with coditions which can be divided into weather and water.
Bass are more accessible during early morning and late afternoon when they are in the shallows, mainly because the water is cooler and therefore contains more oxygen. The bass therefore are more active and more inclined to take bait. During summer especially on hot days and during the warmer part of the day, bigger bass are found in deeper water which is cooler where oxygen is available due to a more constant water temperature and helps them maintain their temperature within certain temperature ranges. A bass is dependant on surroundings to keep it's body temperature constant so as water temp rises the activity of a bass also increases up to a certain temp after which it needs to start looking for ways to keep it's body temp down ie. moving to slightly deeper water or cooler layers of water or structure such as grass beds which provide protection from direct rays of the sun, allow the fish cover for ambush and produce oxygen. Therefore the big bass will position itself where it can find comfort in it's surroundings
As Anglers we need to understand how a bass thinks, to enable us to eliminate non productive areas and concentrate on areas more likely to hold big fish.Next week I will deal with weather and structure.
The club will hold a competition on the 6th of December at either St Cathryn's or Smalhoek - venue will be confirmed. Anyone wishing to fish this competition can contact me on 0825548235. For all members who have not paid membership fees for the new year which started on the 1st of October, please contact me to do so.
Until next time "keep it in the water"
ST CATHRYN'S NEWS
Members are reminded to enter the Farmers Agri-Care Monthly mug to be played on Saturday 22 November. All those wanting to play -- please phone Piet to enter.
Thank you to Greytown for hosting the St Cathryns players at their Classic. We hope all our players swiped their cards in Greytown - if you did not - please let us have the scores.
We will be hosting a group of Varsity students led by young Dr Erik Kloppers on Saturday 29 November, who will be playing against a St Cathryn's Team led by Dr Rikus Kloppers. Eight St Cathryn's players for the team - if you would like to play - please contact Rikus. The format will be better ball and there will be braai afterwards. We will combine this with the Prosurvey Competition which is already on the fixture list and will be an individual stableford competition.
Their parents have gone forever...these young wide eyed orphans are faced with a festive season based on memories and little else.
But some of the orphans and vulnerable children living in Muden are cared for by the Sizani Christian Fellowship care and support group which provides monthly food parcels and school uniforms to the orphans. And the centre is to give them a special Christmas party on 23rd December.
Sizanani spokesperson Fundi Myaka, through the Greytown Gazette, is appealing to families, who will be out shopping for gifts, clothing, food etc for the festive season, to buy an extra item or two for those in need. Remember the orphans and vulnerable children throughout Umvoti face a sad and emotional Christmas as those around celebrate with their families. But for them, there will be grief, loneliness in their hearts as they accept they have no parents to hug...they have gone forever.
To bring some joy and happiness in the true spirit of Christmas Sizanani is appealing for donations of any kind...sweets, biscuits,chips, toys, toiletries, clothing, underwear etc to give to the children at the Christmas party.
Donations can be dropped at Greytown Gazette office or at Sizanani Care and Support centre, Muden or deposited at Nedbank: Sizanani Christian Felllowship; Greytown branch; acc no. 134 402 7199.
For further information contact Fundi Myaka at 072 246 0789.
MASCOR SQUASH CHAMPIONSHIPS
Greytown squash courts are a hive of activity each evening as the Mascor club championships progress. The handicap event has been exciting and some good matches expected this week. Players are reminded to play their matches as soon as possible. Entry fee of R30 payable at the club.
Finals of the handicap and championships will be played on Friday 21st evening - do come along and watch.
The annual Greytown squash challenge against ex-Greytonians was played last Wednesday. It was such an enjoyable and lengthy evening that the final score appears to have been forgotten!!!!!!!!!!!
AFRICAN CULTURAL MUSIC AND DANCE HIV/AIDS AWARENESS CAMPAIGN COMPETITION
As we are all aware that 01 December is World Aids day, a number of public and private sectors/role-players have joined forces to celebrate World HIV/AIDS Awareness Campaign at Mistley/Seven Oaks in the uMvoti local Municipality.
These include the Department of Agriculture, Environmental Affairs; DOE, Bracken Timbers, Mondi and its Contractors, uMvoti HIV/AIDS Centre, uMvoti Local Municipality, uMzinyathi District Municipality, Ekhamazi Sugar and Department of Health.
This year 2008, we aim at celebrating this day in a different manner, whereby the emphasis will be more on the cultural activities such as traditional dance, drama, music and poetry. The success of this campaign lies in stakeholder’s involvement and the encouragement extended to traditional groups from farm workers, contractors, townships and hostels to participate as the main players, giving their contribution of effort and self-expression.
It is going to be good to see the extent of involvement of ordinary people who have come forward of their own initiative to join this campaign. It is the ordinary man and woman who are threatened by AIDS, and so it must be the ordinary man and woman who take up the fight against it. The commemoration of this event will be on the 21st of November 2008.
YOU SNOOZE, YOU LOOSE -WALALA WASALA. ZIZOBE ZIBULALANA
Xolani Qwabe (community Engagement)
MONDI Greytown Area
Umvoti property rate consultants, Mills Fitchett have completed the Municipal valuations on all urban properties in Greytown, Enhlalakahle and Kranskop. With regard to the rural properties, valuations are approximately 85% complete.
A draft valuation board is to provided by them to the Municipality at the end of November for the Municipality to intergrate it with its budget and draft rates policy.
The consultants plan to deliver the Roll to the Municipality on 31 January 2009 from which, according to the Act, the Municipal Manager has 21 days in which to advertise for two consecutive weeks that the Roll is open for public inspection for no less than 30 days, from the date of publication of the last notice.
In the interim, the consultants will perform a number of quality control checks to the valuations prior to delivering the Final Valuation Roll by 31 January 2009.
The Consultants appeal to all farmers to please provide their Postal Addresses to the municipality so that when the time comes to issue the Rates Bills, the municipality knows where to send them. This is also to the advantage of the farmers themselves.
In response to a request from the Greytown Gazette, Umvoti Municipal Chief Financial Officer, Sipho Ndabandaba stated:
“Umvoti Municipality is well on target with the implementation of the new valuation roll and the adoption of its draft Rates Policy for the Municipality. The signed Valuation Roll is expected to be delivered on time on 31 January 2008. The Valuation Roll will then be advertised in early February 2009 and made available for inspection at the Municipal offices and library. Each ratepayer will also receive with their February 2009 rates or utilities account an extract of the valuation roll relating to their property together with a notice advising them where the Valuation roll can be inspected and how to lodge an objection.
It is important for owners who are being rated for the first time such as owners of rural and agricultural properties to ensure that their postal address is correctly shown in the roll. The onus rests on the owners to notify the municipality if they have not received an account.
It is proposed to put the draft Rates Policy to the Umvoti Council on the 10th December 2008 for approval, and if approved the draft policy will immediately be advertised in the media calling on the public to submit comments. Public meetings with ratepayer associations and stakeholders on the draft Rates Policy are proposed for early January 2009 before the closing time for comments, all stakeholders are encouraged to take part in this public participation in order to have their views heard before implementation. Notices will be given in the media for these meetings.
Both the Valuation Roll and the draft Rates Policy will also be published by placing them on the Municipality’s website”.
There is a growing trend to add-on and renovate old buildings rather than sell as a result of the economic downturn combined with tax rebates states Ros Devereux, built environment expert for the provincial heritage body, AMAFA.
All structures older than 60 years are generally protected throughout KZN and a permit is required from AMAFA to demolish, alter or add on. It is up to local municipalities to forward plans to AMAFA in such instances.
Devereux receives up to 50 permit applications a month, a growing number because of the current trend to add-on and renovate rather than sell and buy up.
Built structures in KZN have three levels of protection. The highest is the Heritage Landmark/Provincial Heritage Landmark (former national monument) status like Durban and Pietermaritzburg City Halls, the Post Offices, historic sites and places of importance to the province.
Then there are buildings and places listed in the 1980s surveys of individual towns which include churches, temples and residential buildings of local importance.
Last tier of protection is a general one for all buildings over 60 years. These include wood and iron dwellings, verandah houses with traditional gables and bay windows, and Indian vernacular houses in suburbs like Clairwood. Even structures like pig sties, farm sheds, stables and former coach houses, and other out buildings are included.
Amafa must give permission for any changes to any of these buildings or their surroundings. Applications for approval for demolition and or alterations and additions to these protected structures are assessed by a consultant panel of senior architects.
Sadly much has already been lost. She said “We need these tangible reminders of our past. All the great cities of the world have layers upon layers reflecting past conquests and civilisations.
So buildings and sites can be put to new use and at the same time be protected by us to value for ever. Like the former wall of the old Durban prison, now the Human Rights Wall with its murals depicting the Draft Bill of Rights and the new S A Constitution.”
Final deadline for building applications to Amafa for this year is December 3. Responses/permits will be issued by December 10. Applications received after December 3 will be considered after January 7 2009.
12 November 2008
DEPUTY MINISTER OF FINANCE...... FROM KRANSKOP
Deputy Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene of Kranskop was sworn in to
his new position last Tuesday by President Kgalema Motlanthe at the
Union Buildings. Well liked and highly respected, he is known for
his prudent approach to fiscal and macroeconomic policy and his
appointment has been welcomed across the board.
He has been an MP
since 1999 and during this time acquired a wealth of financial and
economic knowledge, chairing both the joint budget committed
and the Parliamentary portfolio finance committee.
Nene has been mentioned as a possible replacement for Finance Minister
Trevor Manuel who has said he was "delighted" by the
that Nene had performed his tasks as finance committee chairman with
diligence and integrity.
Last Friday a Greytown Gazette reporter was able to interview the new
First thing that strikes you when meeting South Africa's deputy minister
Finance, Nhlanhla Nene is his warm, down to earth manner and his humble
approach to all he has achieved and will achieve. He has a delightful
sense of humour rapidly activated by the mention of the word "chair"! He
states that after the SATV 2 appearance he was billed as the only "chairperson without a chair" and it was suggested that he should be
in standing committees!
Born in Kranskop, he completed his early education there prior to
Georgetown High School. A longstanding member of the ANC he was also
Regional Secretary of the local branch.
To celebrate Umvoti's first ever national minister, the Inkosi Bhambatha
ANC branch, hosted a surprise party for the deputy minister last
when over 200 supporters and friends gathered in Greytown to express
pride and joy in and with him.
A deeply caring family man, his wife and
younger children live in Kranskop as does his 83 year old mother. He
the Greytown Gazette that during his time in Parliament he would come
to Kranskop nearly every weekend to be with his family.
He is very well known in Umvoti -before entering Parliament Nhlanhla was
with Metropolitan Insurance in Greytown. He served on the LETCEE and St
David School boards.
Despite his more and more senior and responsible positions in Parliament,
Nhlanhla amazingly and impressively found time to study to further his
knowledge. He has acquired economic qualifications through UNISA; the
University of Western Cape; a B.Com honours and diploma from the
University of London in Economic Principles.
Throughout his career he has been guided by the belief "once deployed you
give it your best".
On being asked by the reporter, whether Umvoti would feature high on his
list, the Deputy Minister pointed out that there are 284 municipalities
with their needs -workable business plans needed to be submitted based on
the IDP and the needs of the people.
He admits its a daunting and challenging task ahead, particularly with
economic crises being faced throughout the world, but the Greytown
on behalf of all its readers, expresses its full confidence in Nhlanhla
Nene - a man of Umvoti and deputy Minister of Finance.
uThukela Water has drawn up a list of tips and advice as part of its
Education programme, Customer Care Manager Dumisani Thabethe recommends
all leaks be fixed as soon as possible. Check for leaks, by turning off all taps -take a meter reading; wait ten minutes and take reading again - if usage reflected then there is a leak. To find leaks: above ground - look for dripping taps, leaking toilets or baths. A drip a second adds R25 to the monthly water bill.
Underground leaks: look for damp or wet patches or green grass. Property owner is responsible for the payment of repairs within the property. Uthukela Water responsible for leaks and repairs outside the property.
Reduce water use by:
If you have a 12 - 16 litre cistern change it to a 9 litre
120 litres are used to have a bath - a shower saves hugely on that amount.
Use a glass when brushing teeth - do not leave the tap running.
Do not use a hosepipe to wash your car.
Check your consumption by:
Checking meter regularly ;
record readings and make sure meter is accessible.
Reduce amount of water used.
Report faulty meters immediately.
Any problems contact Uthukela 24/7 call centre on 0860 144144 or Rashnee Maharaj at Umvoti Municipality. ends
FROM THE DITCH
The forces have been gathering, and Veld Kornet Tony Smith has been practicing over the weekend with the heavy artillery, assisted by President Jacques Minnaar and skutter Gerard Balzer.
Major General Mac McIntyre has recruited Major Klaus Fischer of canteen fame, and veteran Peter Mason to form the first battalion; while Major Jack Mason has involved Scottish Highlander Sam and Wally Kohne to form the second command.
Sergeant Balfour has store man Roy Thomson and Bob Simpson, while Sergeant Jack Drew has already settled for look out scouts Clive Edkins and Roy Harris. Lieutenant Bobby Pistor has Major Paul Buss and recruited flag holder Errol Rottcher while newly promoted Corporal Bryan Paul will have the honour of Pam Paul and the wily Bobby Pearson at his side.
All troops are reminded to wear their uniforms (red shirts and white shorts)
this Friday and bring rations (your own food) -braai fires will be lit.
Anyone who would like to be conscripted is very welcome!
In the NIBA matches played in Pietermaritzburg results were:
men's trips:Tony Smith;Jacques Minnaar and Gerhard Balzer lost in first round;
in the ladies trips, Sannie Balzer, Judy Ellman and Erica Fischer won first round against Wanderers and lost to Collegians in the second round. ends
GREYTOWN COUNTRY CLUB NEWS
ON FRIDAY NIGHT NO CHICKEN RUN WAS PLAYED DUE TO BAD WEATHER. BAD LUCK STEVE STAMP ON LOSING OUT FRIDAY NIGHT WITH THE ATTENDANCE
COMING FRIDAY the pot WILL BE R900
SATURDAY'S MONTHLY MUG WAS WON BY ANTON VOSLOO, AT LAST ANTON ON A 71 NETT. SUNDAY THE CLUB HOSTED THE MIDLANDS CLOSED GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS which WAS
WELL SUPPORTED. 30 GOLFERS PARTICIPATED -
results AS FOLLOWS:
THE A DIVISION WAS WON BY Greytown's B MHANGENI ON 148.
The B DIVISION G WESSELS of Howick on 162 AND THE
C DIV BY Piet Coetzee of ST
CATHERYN'S on 180. THE BEST TEAM WAS WON BY BOSCHOEK. THANK YOU GOLFERS FOR
PLAYING AT GREYTOWN 36 HOLES IS NEVER EASY.
ON SATURDAY 15TH NOVEMBER GREYTOWN COUNTRY CLUB IS HOSTING THE YEARLY
CLASSIC - please enter as soon as possible
Firstly congrats to Joe Nel who took time off from repairing the Rietvlei
road to bag himself an 8 and a half Kg barble at Merthley, taken on Flying
Well the Bass have definitely come out of hiding with good catches
reported from several dams. We managed to bag 30 at St Cathryns over the
weekend, mostly small sport models but we also missed some bigger fish
mostly from being out of practice.
As mentioned in last weeks column we will continue with lines, this week
dealing with line size and applications. Starting off by dividing lines into
light, medium and heavy categories.
Light line - (6 to 10 Lbs) Using light lines will often allow you to feel
more bites but you may also lose more fish. Mostly light lines are used for
drop shotting in deep clear water where the chances of getting snagged are
minimal and you have all the space to play the fish without losing it.
Medium - ( 10 to 16Lbs) These are lines generally used in most situations
for small or large fish. Carolina and Mojo rigs can be fished with 12 and 14
Lbs line, crank baits can easily be fished to specified depths on 12Lb line
and Zara Spooks and other top water lures fish well with 15Lb line. 16Lb
line is suitable for light structure and sparse cover.
Heavy line (16lb upward) Heavy lines are commonly used when pitching or
flipping into heavy cover and not for long open water casts. When fishing
thick weed patches or timber stands or lay downs, braided lines come into
their own. A 50Lb braid with the approximate diameter of 15Lb monofilament
line will work in the heaviest of cover and you are more likely to lose a
lunker by tearing out the hook rather than a line snap.,If you get wrapped up
around a piece of timber by an old clever campaigner you might have to end
up sacrificing your expensive braid and cutting your line.
It is important to fish the right line for the right application thereby
losing less fish and minimizing fish snapped off with hook imbedded and line trailing.
Keep in mind the Cast For Cash at Craigieburn on Sunday the 16th Starting at
06h00. Entrance fee is R200.00 per two man team and tickets are available
from "the Edge" tackle shop or at the dam.
New Subscriptions to the Umvoti Bass club are due for the new season Sept
2008 to Sept 2009. Adults R300 per annum Juniors R150, Pensioners R200 and
Country Members R200 per annum. The club has currently got access to 6
private dams and we are hoping to increase that number during the year.
list of fixtures for the year will be printed in next weeks column until
then "Keep it in the Water"
POLICE SHOT IN CASH HEIST
A massive police manhunt is underway following the shooting of two police officers when they were ambushed by a gang of about 15 robbers during a brazen cash-in-transit heist in Maphumulo early on Monday morning.
Two other police personnel from Maphumulo were also shot they are reported to be in a stable condition in hospital.
The ambush occurred when the convoy, a Fidelity Guards truck with cash, CPS Toyota Venture vehicle and SAPS Toyota Quantum minibus was travelling on R74 from Maphumulo police station to Ezikhulile Store pension pay point in Emafahleni area outside Maphumulo at about 8 am. Maphumulo police were escorting as information had been received that a hold-up had been planned.
According to police reports a Ford bakkie drove past the security and CPS vehicles. Members of the armed gang on the back of the bakkie then opened fire on the police vehicle. Inspector Dludlu and Sergeant Sithole died at the scene and Inspector Khuzwayo and a constable were shot and seriously injured. The other vehicles swerved off the road. Driver of the Fidelity Guards truck, Bheki Mfusi stated that soon after the Ford bakkie had passed, a white Nissan vehicle followed it, which tried to push him off the road. He alerted his two colleagues when he saw that the occupants were heavily armed.
The Nissan made a U-turn overtook him and blocked his way. Gang members held them at gun point and forced them to open the back where the cash was held. A third vehicle with females from CPS Security then came on the scene and the women were held at gun point and threatened to shoot them.
As soon as the back door of the cash vehicle was opened robbers forced the security guards and CPS personnel to lie down and rob them of their firearms and celllphones. The gang took nine firearms, including 9mm pistols, R5 rifles and shotguns. Five boxes of cash were stolen.
An Isuzu double cab and a Mazda bakkie were used in the escape As they escaped the gang abandoned one of their vehicles on the Umvoti River bridge thus blocking the police who were forced to remove the vehicle before they could chase after the gang. A police spokesman said that the cash heist had been well organised and that it was possible that there would be an increase in such crimes during the build up to the festive season.
Anyone with any information is requested to contact the nearest police station or call toll free Crime Stop 0860 0210 111. ends
St Cathryn's News.
The Farmers Agri-Care Monthly mug has been postponed to Saturday 22nd
November from 10h00 onwards to enable our golfers to take part in the
Greytown Classic. All those wishing to play
please contact Piet Nel on 033 4441945 or 083 269 1661.
SABC NEWS MATRIC RESULTS SERVICE
Matrics who might not be able to access their results in December are reminded that 2008 will be able to do so on the SABC News’ News Break service. As in previous years, this popular SABC information line will provide detailed results in both SMS and voice versions. For the first time this year, IEB (Independent Examination Board) students will also be able to access their results on News Break 082-152, option 6.
There are three options to retrieve results:
1. SMS the word MATRIC to 35470 and receive detailed results on the day
of release via SMS, after submitting exam and ID numbers in the reply sms.
2. Call 082 152, select option 6, and register by following the
instructions to receive results via SMS.
3. Call 082 152 on results day, select option 6 and listen to the
Students must have both their ID number and exam number at hand to register beforehand or to retrieve their results on the day they are released. “We invite students to start registering from today to receive their results as soon as they are released”, says New Media Editor Judy Sandison, SABC News.
This service saves students time and money, especially if they are going to be away from home on results day. “If you have a mobile phone signal you will be able to access results, even in the United States (by dialing +27 82
152) or the United Kingdom by dialing +27 82 234 2900”, explains Judy. SMSs cost R3.00 each and calls are charged at standard VAS (value-added
The service is not limited to mobile phones. Students can also use a landline to listen to their results. Simply dial 082 152, select option 6 and use the hash (#) key to select further options.
7 November 2008
Yes...it really was Ernie Els himself, in person, at Greytown Country Club last Friday night.Jessie Odendaal, Lucy and Sarah McGhie and Sian Owen were among the many, young and not quite so, who were absolutely thrilled to meet the famous golfing hero.
Because of bad weather, the helicopter he was flying in landed at Pannar airfield early Friday evening. Ernie had to reach Durban urgently as he he was due to fly off to Mauritius at 6 on Saturday morning. The helicopter pilot arranged to borrow a vehicle - Dr Terry Owen was happy to do so but on one condition - that Ernie made a brief appearance at the Greytown Country Club. Much to the delight of the big crowd there - he did so and several photogrpahs, atuogrpahs, chats and a 100 dollar round of drinks later went on his way.
GROOT GAT GOOD NEWS!!!!
Regular users of the infamous "groot gat" detour will be pleased to hear that as from the third week of November the new black top road will be open to all vehicles. Hooray!!!!!!!!!!!!!
In the ongoing clampdown on traffic offences, combined Police/RTI road blocks were held in and around Greytown last Friday night.
Seven drivers were charged in terms of driving under the influence of alcohol and appeared in the Greytown Magistrates Court on Monday as follows:
Charged with the more serious driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor:
Jakobus Marius Janse van Rensburg and Linda Themba
Charged with driving whilst the breath alcohol content exceeds the legal limit:
Xolani Mkhize; Mthokozisi Mnyende, Mandlakayise Alfred Nene, Sithembiso Gwala, Michael Jonny Pillay.
Greytown Magistrate, on Monday, found two of those charged did not have driver's licences and gave them six months to obtain a licence. Four of the seven were charged and fined - the other three to appear during the week.
MORE MUNICIPAL MANAGER QUERIES!
Following the report introducing Umvoti's new Municipal Manager, Mr
Hamilton Ntshangase, to the public in the Greytown Gazette of 22nd October,
some readers decided to "google" his name on the Internet to find out more
information about Umvoti's first permanent Municpal Manager in 40
Much to the amazement of these researchers a number of press reports,
from 2000 on, were listed containing information relating to the
of Mr Ntshangase, as deputy director of youth and culture, in the
Department of Arts and Culture. He was suspended in December 1999, on
pay and reinstated in July 2002. The researchers passed these reports on
the Greytown Gazette in the interests of the Umvoti
In February 2002 Ntshangase was given a final
written warning after an internal disciplinary inquiry, chaired by
Dorkin of the Department of Education, had found him guilty of 12 counts
misconduct. Charges involved
mismanaging public money; awarding bursaries totaling one million without
following laid down procedures; departmental assets valued at R200 000
been removed to his home. - in all the R385 000 a year official was
in charges totaling 2.5 million rand.
Politicians were outraged at the
"slap on the wrist" punishment and the matter was raised in Parliament
it was decided to take it on a Labor Court review. Education and Finance
ministers' lawyers claimed the punishment was wrong and "grossly
disproportionate" in terms of
the loss of 1.2 million; nepotism and abuse of power etc and stated
difficult to imagine how anyone could escape dismissal in these
However in July 2002 Ntshangase was asked to return to the Department
Professor Lamina who stated that
"The department cannot take its own decision for review in the Labor
This was a precautionary suspension aimed at facilitating the official
inquiry so that Ntshangase could not interfere with the investigation.
felt that since the hearing had passed its verdict and sentence, we
continue to suspend a person when the matter has been finalized,"
Comment on the above was requested from uMvoti Mayor, with particular
reference to the interview committee; ANC Councilors and the DA -
unfortunately in view of press deadlines not much time was allowed to
prepare comment. However as ANC regional chairman, Councilor Avondale
expressed the considerable concern, on behalf of uMvoti ratepayers as to
the fact that:
In his previous position the uMvoti MM had been found guilty on a number of
charges involving money, goods and nepotism. The MM had been interviewed
and employed by the IFP led council despite a very disturbing history.
Anyone could have logged on to the internet and the "answers would have
Also extremely perturbing is the warning by the new MM to the businesses
Greytown to make sure that " (the Council) should not be ripped off" -
obviously a meeting to discuss this approach is a matter of urgency
the Municipal Manager and stakeholders. This is a very serious accusation
make about local businesses and the suggestion that Pietermaritzburg be
as a buying centre instead of Greytown implies a severe lack of trust in
the integrity of Greytown business.
In a statement to the Greytown Gazette by DA Councillor Paul Buss he
that the DA was shocked that the IFP led administration in Umvoti
municipality had seen fit to appoint Mr Ntshangase as the new municipal
manager in the light of his background. He stated "Local government is in
state of collapse and the DA believes that all deserve only the best,
particularly when it come to appointing senior management in this crucial
area of delivery. Given the serious questions that are a matter of public
record with respect to Mr Ntshangase's track record, the DA is strongly
opposed to this appointment which shows contempt for the legitimate
expectations of Umvoti residents."
Umvoti Mayor, Councillor P.Ngubane replied as follows:
"The interview Committee was aware of Mr. Ntshangase’s background. He
disclosed all this in his application. In fact it is in the CV. He did also
talk about it during the interview.
You are however urged to liaise with him should you be in need of further
In view of the time restraints the Municipal Manager was unable to reply but
it is hoped he will for next week's issue.
"LETS MAKE A DIFFERENCE.... SHOW WE CARE"
Two Greytown businesses have got together to spread joy and happiness to
those who face a bleak and hungry festive season.
In a joint iniative Dudley Rawstorne and the Rawstornes guesthouse personnel
and Tubby Larkan and his team from Mascor General Motors and John Deere
franchise are in the process of launching a major charity drive to run over
the next two months. Donations for the "Lets make a difference-Show we
care" campaign include non-perishable food, new clothes, toys and stationery
which will be distributed to charity organisations.
Anyone wishing to donate to this very worthwhile and heartwarming campaign
can leave items at The Rawstornes, 268 Voortrekker Street, Mascor and the
For further information please contact Dudley or Sue Rawstorne on 033 417
1344 or 082 820 2988.
"PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE"
An informative talk on diabetes, blood pressure, detoxing, Bemer treatment
and much more has been arranged by Greytown Drugstore to take place on
Wednesday 26th November, 5.30 for 6 p.m. at the Greytown Bowls club for
members of the community. Equipment and supplements will be on sale. Snacks
and refreshments will be available and there is no entry charge.
Anyone interested in attended is asked to contact the Drugstore clinic on
033 413 2157 (office hours) for catering purposes.
Friday’s Chicken Run was won by Murray Mason. The R1000 draw on Friday night
was won by Ladies Golf section and Chivas Regal by Karsten Meyer. Supper was
well prepared and sponsored by generously Greytown Drugstore and RTS.
Happy Hour was from 8am and all SAB products were half price sponsored by
Greytown Beer Distributors.
What a Friday night.......!!!!!! Thanks to Terry Owen’s guest who arrived at
the Club no other than our famous Ernie Els. Hands were shaken. Pictures
taken, autographs given.
On Saturday early the NG Church golf day was moved from St Cathryn’s to
Greytown. 24 golfers played and results were:
1st Dusty Shaw and John Lloyd Rawstorne ;
2nd Piet Nel and Gary Schwarts
Thank you Piet Nel
for having your sponsor day at Greytown.
Friday night the attendance draw is worth R900. Please come and support the
Club and you could be the lucky winner.
Dates to diarise is coming Saturday monthly mug and the Midlands closed -
please enter at club.
GREYTOWN MOUNTAIN BIKE CLUB
Greytown Mountain Bike club green and blue colours were eyecatchingly
prominent as fourteen riders from Greytown went on the "war trail" last
weekend at the superbly organised Natro Berg and Bush two day mountain-bike
ride traversing the renowned Anglo-Boer War battlefields on and around
Spionkop near Winterton.
Now in its third year, this multiday event has
burgeoned from small beginnings to hosting two hundred paired teams of
mountainbikers who are afforded the privilege of enjoying two days of
magnificent mountain-biking terrain, spectacular views and the generous
hospitality of the local community. Even non-cycling supporters are royally
hosted by being treated to a sumptuous champagne breakfast at a scenic and
strategic location along the route.
This year while the field of sweating
riders laboured in temperatures in the mid-30's their supporters picnicked
in the shade on the banks of the Spionkop dam and on Sunday they were able
to enjoy a pleasant morning enjoying a lavish brunch whilst watching their
loved ones crossing the mighty Thukela.
The 60 km course on Saturday took riders from the private Emseni camp,
through the Ezemvelo Spionkop Reserve and rolling farmland down to the
shores of Spionkop dam where members of the local ski-boat club availed
their craft to ferry fiders across the dam to the start of the long climb to
the summit of Spionkop mountain.
As riders tackled this shadeless and
exponential climb one had to cast ones mind back in history and sympathise
with the British "red-coats" labouring up the unforgiving mountain whilst
under fire in the African heat. However the final lung-bursting push for
the summit was rewarded with spectacular views of the patchwork farmland
below and the mighty Drakensberg as a backdrop, a sight that reaffirmed why
mountainbikers do what they do.
As the saying goes' "what goes up has to
come down". "Down" in this instance was a single-track junkie's delight of
kilometers of open cattle paths and breath-taking rocky descents all
challenging yet quite rideable for the average mountain-biker. After the
arid, rock strewn heat of the mountain the final kilometers of the course of
Day 1 led riders home through a section of track aptly named "The Garden of
Eden", a fast, flowing single-track along the banks of the Thukela in the
welcome cool shade of a Combretum "forest".
Day 2 dawned with searing temperatures and the field set off at 7h00 as the
mercury was already climbing toward the 30's. After a few kilometers of
open road where riders could stretch legs and lungs the course varied
between sections of flowing single track through Acacia thornveld and fast,
open farm roads, past friendly homesteads, where the inhabitiants all met
riders with joyous ululating and encouragment, and across vast stretches of
open single-track following cattle paths. Where the track and the mighty
Thukela met riders were faced with two options, either to stay dry and
"fuffi-slide" across on the specially constructed zip-line or shoulder ones
bike, hang on to the guide rope and wade the river.
After enjoying some
refreshment at this well stocked "watering-hole" the riders took off in a
beating wind for the beginning of the notorious climb up to the summit of
Bullers Point where, during the Battle for Spionkop, Sir Redvers Buller
conducted his troops in their efforts to capture the mountain. A taxing
climb up a rocky track known as "Big Red" followed by "Small Red" was made
more energy sapping by the searing heat, dessicating wind and the fact that
this tough ascent comes in the final kilometers of the ride when legs and
bodies are already weary.
The reward from the top of the plateau is another
spectacular view across the valley towards Spionkop mountain and a final 8
kilometers of fast, exciting single track that returned exhilirated riders
to the end of two magnificent days of mountain-biking. A mass entrance of
Greytown Mountain Bike Club's blue and green clad riders rolling in to the
finish chute made a huge impression and received media attention as well as
a positive response from both the organisers and many competitors who,
throughout the event observed and commented on the spirit of the Greytown
riders riding as a club
PREPARE TO MAKE YOUR MARK
South Africa is moving into election mode with all the signs that the 2009
elections will be more robustly contested than previous elections.
Dr Brigalia Bam, Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (IEC) has said "
cannot preside over an election where freedom of choice is not respected”.There
is nothing wrong with robust electioneering,
but unfortunately undertones of it turning into violent confrontation are
already surfacing...instances of political violence and hate speech have
been reported. All forms of political violence are condemned from
The Electoral Code promotes conditions conducive to free and fair
elections, including tolerance of democratic political activity
and free political campaigning and openness.
Voting stations throughout South Africa will be open this weekend, 8th and
9th November for South African citizens to either register or to check
registration details on the Voters Roll.
Umvoti Electoral Project Co-coordinator Chris Naidoo provided the
details on the eleven wards Of Umvoti Municipality.
For the local government elections of 2006 there were 39,418 registered
voters in the 11 wards. Ward 9 had the most registered voters with 4 040
and Ward 7 the least with 3 176.
Voter turnout for the elections was 50.83%.
Inkatha Freedom Party obtained
54.55% of the votes;
Highest turnout of voters was Ward
with 57.41% voting whilst Ward 3 had the lowest turnout of 43.7%.
All voting stations in all eleven wards where voters previously registered
and voted will be open on Saturday and Sunday with the exception of the
Ward 1 venue which was at the Enhlahlakahle Stadium in 2006. This voting
station will now be in operation at the old Enhlalakahle Community Hall.
Three other new voting stations are:
Ward 2: Tholinhlanhla Primary School in Enhlalakahle; Ward 6: Bubu School
and Ward 10: Lootshoek Primary School. A total of 168 personnel have been
trained by the IEC -there will be 3 personnel per station. All venues
will open at 8 a.m. and close at 5 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.
Voters and would be voters must take along their bar coded Identity
Books. It is very important for registered voters to check their details
on the Roll in whichever Ward they are registered. Registered voters who
have moved or relocated since the last elections must register in their
To be eligible for registration as a voter the following requirements apply:
a.. South African citizens who have not previously registered
b.. South African citizens turning 16 (but you can only vote when you are
18 years old)
c. Newly naturalized citizens (with a bar-coded South African Identity
Document showing their SA citizenship)
For more information please contact the Greytown IEC office on
033 417 or the IEC toll-free on 0800 11 8000