|Tel: 033 4132735
26 January 2011
Pride of India in full bloom
Photo by Keith Simpson
NGO’S STILL WAIT FOR MEC DONATIONS
Thanks to unfulfilled promises made by MEC of Social Development at a gala dinner for President Zuma last September seven Umvoti NGO’s are facing financial embarrassment as the R300 000 donation each was promised has not materialised.
National media coverage at the time conveyed the gratitude of the seven NGO’s to this generous gift as well as to the promise from Umvoti Councillor P.G. Mavundla to an additional R50 000 for each of the seven.
However to date, letters and phone calls from the NGO’s to the MEC Mischack Hadebe , have not been acknowledged;appeals to the office of President Zuma have elicited assurances to follow up on the promises made in Greytown and a request to the NGO’s to be patient. But nothing concrete has been forthcoming and no funds have been received at all from any sources.
All these NGO’s work with , assist and support vulnerable and underprivileged children, and are dependent on donations received. The promised R350 000 will go a long way to help the NGO’s continue bringing hope , and a future, to those in need and to give them the resources to reach out to even more of the countless vulnerable and underprivileged in Umvoti.
D.A MPL Radley Keyes while welcoming the promised funding , expressed his concern at the delay and silence in the follow through.In this regard he today,Monday, posed a parliamentary question to the MEC with the expectation that he will expedite the payments as a matter of urgency.
ELECTION CORRECTION ‘
Apologies to the voters of what used to be Ward 3 Umvoti for publishing incorrect information in the report on ward changes in last week’s Greytown Gazette. As one of the voters in this previous Ward 3, the Editor was also totally confused by the information given for the article.
The correct position is -voters who previously voted at Greytown Junior School as part of ward 3 will now vote in Ward 11 if they live between Harding and High Street. Their voting station is the Elijah Ministries in Cooper Street.
Previous Ward 3 voters who live in Harding Street and up to Shepstone Street are now in Ward 10 and can still vote at Greytown Junior School!
Advice to all voters -please check your registration and where you must vote -call 080 011 8000;or check the “am I registered” on the IEC website www.elections.org.za
One of the facilities offered by the IEC for checking registration is to SMS your ID to 32810 when in theory anyone of the three networks will confirm your registration. This works BUT does not indicate where you have to re-register or vote.
However, in the interest of yet another successful free democratic local government election -please take the time over the registration weekend of 5th and 6th February to check out at your previous voting station , if you do not know your new one, and the Officer in charge will inform you of where to go.
aQuelle Hermannsburg Mudman Count down!
Only 10 days to go till the Mudman challenge in Hermannsburg! On Saturday 5th February athletes, men, women, children, schools and businesses will be taking part in this popular multi-sport event, which has become an annual highlight at Hermannsburg.
It is hoped that all entrants have trained hard in the last couple of weeks and are ready for the challenge. Remember the Mudman has various entry levels, from little “mud skippers” (mainly pre-school and primary school) through half and full events, and even an option to enter as a team if you are not fit enough to do all three disciplines on your own.
Do remember the ‘Business Challenge’. Enter your company as a team,in your own category and stand a chance to win a trophy and prize for your firm. Run in company colours or specially printed t-shirts( free advertising!).
Delicious snacks will be on sale all day, be there, either as a spectator or a participant - a good day’s fun in the sun for young and old!
Enter on-line or phone the school for details on entries.
For more information please visit www.hmbschool.co.za
WANTED FOR 2008 MURDER AND ARMED ROBBERY
Greytown detectives have issued an urgent appeal for information on Phamlani Nzama wanted for question in connection with murder and armed robbery in Kranskop[ in September 2008. The Police have issued a warning that the wanted man is known to be dangerous, probably armed and members are the public are requested not to approach him but to contact the Police immediately
On the afternoon of Monday 22nd September 2008, an armed robbery and shooting took place at Trixie’s Supermarket in Kranskop. Security guard, Jeffery Madakane who was in the process of filling an in store ATM with cash ,was confronted by three men one of whom produced a firearm and fired numerous shots at Madakane who died on the scene.The robbers grabbed two money boxes, the security guard’s 9 mm service pistol and fled in a waiting car which was found by the Police abandoned about ten kms from Kranskop. Police have established that the vehicle, a silver Nissan Tida, was stolen in the Pinetown area.
It is believed that Nsama may be in the Maphumulo, Nsuze or Durban areas.
Police are appealing to anyone that can assist with any information regarding the whereabouts of the suspect to contact Investigating Officer - Detective Captain Bobby Naicker on (033) 413 9034 or 082 469 9189.
Anyone who wishes to remain anonymous may contact Crime Stop on the toll free number 08600 10111.
A sixteen year old was arrested following the stabbing of her grandfather on Tuesday 18th January. It is reported that 67 Bhekokwakhe Gumede was stabbed when he had an argument with his teenage granddaughter in their home in the Harburg district. The suspect’s mother went out of the house to fetch water when her father ,, who lived in an outbuilding, went into the kitchen . It is alleged that an altercation took place and the 16 year old stabbed her grandfather in the chest , fatally wounding him.
On her return to the house the woman found the body of her father and contacted the Police. The 16 year old has been released into the care of her mother and will appear in New Hanover Magistrate’s Court shortly.
GARDEN CLUB MEETING ...SOMEWHAT DIFFERENT!
February”s Garden Club meeting has two major changes - firstly it is taking place on a Friday and secondly it is in Pietermaritzburg!
Umvoti Garden Club members and visitors are being offered an excursion to Rosehurst in Pietermaritzburg for the first garden club meeting of 2011 on Friday 11 February. The committee are excited to be able to offer this unique opportunity to spend a morning at a genteel pace and in the style of a bygone era in the beautiful Victorian garden at Rosehurst. The garden, is comprised of theme gardens - such as the Pink lawn garden; the White gazebo garden and the Topiary garden .The current owner, Candy, will be present a talk on the gardens and facilities at Rosehurst. This will be followed, in true Victorian style, with tea and scones to enjoy in the peace and tranquility of the garden.
As this meeting entails traveling, members and guests interested in joining the excursion are asked please to note the following:
-Transport in the Arcadia bus will be provided – booking is essential -there will be a charge for this transport. Over and above this non-members pay R20-00 visitors fee.
The bus will leave from Concordia at 8h30. For those travelling independently the meeting will start at 10h00 at Rosehurst.
Tea and scones will be provided by Rosehurst but those preferring coffee can purchase it from the Café on the premises.
It is absolutely essential to contact Sheila Redfern on 082 486 7541 not only to confirm that you will be there but also if you want to book a seat on the bus. Please not later than Monday 7th February.This must be done by Monday 7 February at the latest.
There is a Café and Gift Shop at Rosehurst and remember
the meeting is on Friday 11 February, not the usual Tuesday.
ST CATHRYN’S NEWS
The Farmers Agri-Care Monthly Mug was played on Saturday 22 January in hot conditions. The course is looking good after the hollow-tining treatment, but the rough is very tough - helped along by the wonderful rains. We had 55mm by Sunday morning and another 12 mm by Monday morning. The balance of the hollow - tining will commence later on in February.
Results as follows :
1st: Barry Oehme 69 nett
2nd: Piet Coetzee 70 nett
3rd: Steven van der Merwe 72 nett
Captains putter: Carina Rommelspacher
Two Clubs : Barry Oehme
Nearest to pin 9/18: Gerald Harrison
The next Farmers Agri-Care Monthly Mug will take place on 12 February. Golfers can now concentrate on training for the Mudman to take place on Saturday 5 February at Hermannsburg School.
To book for golf please phone Piet on 083 269 1661 or 033 4441945 and to book for meals please phone Paul 084 5966 292.
GNOMING IN THE GARDEN IN HOTHOTHOT JANUARY
Firstly happy New Year and here’s hoping we have lovely rain right through to the right month… maybe even to April.. There’s nothing better than mud on your boots!
Came home from a three week break to a garden full of weeds and kikuyu..
I threaten to put some sort of edging around the beds that would stop the Kikuyu from encroaching in to the flowers but it is very costly and really does not look natural… so I plough on , pulling digging and ruining my nails.
Luckily it rained fairly often and that saved my neighbour from the task of watering for me - only had to water once and he watered UNDERNEATH the roses , not straight over the top. This is the correct way to water roses as it does not damage the blooms.Also roses do get black spot when their leaves are wet.
I have sprayed for fungal disease and insects plus I always add liquid fertilizer in to the spray. They are really looking splendid… I will be punished for bragging I am sure! Soon I shall mulch again as what was there has definitely diminished.
Hydrangeas can be slipped now. I take old wood, dip into Hormone Powder,push into a mix of half sand and soil/compost and water well. Continue to water till new leaves appear. They take along time to grow but are worth while. There are some wonderful colours to be had so take cuttings from these. They normally do produce the same colour.
If sweet peas are your fancy , get the trenches ready now.Go down as deep as you like and fill with well rotted compost and manure and leave for a few weeks. Sweet peas have very long roots hence they need the deep trenches to flower abundantly.
Vegs… keep planting beans. lettuce,spinach,beetroot , most things this month but beware of insects,with the rain and hot weather they really thrive..particularly snails and slugs.
MASCOR SQUASH CHAMPIONSHIPS
There were some exciting and well contested matches at the Mascor 2010 squash championships played last Friday
For the tenth time Terry Owen is Club Champion. At the prizegiving and awards evening Pete Koller thanked Mascor and Mascor BP for their continued and generous sponsorship.Bill Comins of Mascor assure the club of his firm’s continued support in future.
Men's plate: Mike Barrow and runner up Egon Kassier.
Ladies:champion:Lauren Cawood ;runner up Kath du Preez
Mascor:champion:Terry Owen;runner up:Etienne van Rooyen
Most improved lady:Lynda Drogemoller
Most improved man:Driaan Bresler
Best league captain:Conrad Fourie
Chairman's trophy for service to squash:Clive Edkins
COUNCIL CHAOS ...AGAIN
An out of town visitor at last Friday's special statutory Council was so entertained by the histrionic performances of Councillors, that his 3 hour plus wait to make a presentation, passed in a flashing flurry of amazement and amusement at the antics taking place. Maybe the excitement of the first meeting of the year, as well as this being an election year created the feverish and frenetic atmosphere which prevailed for the first four hours.
Highlights of note:
*At the start a secret ballot to vote on an ANC proposal to suspend the Standing Orders .15 minute break for Municipal officials to prepare the ballot papers which were rejected by the ANC when it was noted that Councillor's names were requested!
Finally new ballot papers and voting was 12 against suspension (IFP) and 8 in favour of suspension (ANC).
Representatives of the Auditor General's office and the Department of Finance also seemed somewhat shell shocked at the shenanigans of the Council.
AG representative gave a briefing on the 2009-10 audit report which was once again unqualified. However a number of queries were raised by him as follows:
*Irregular expenditure of over R3 million through contracts awarded to bidder who fraudulently used two names "COA Development Interface Projects and TSW Construction" approved though in direct contravention of Municipal Finance Management Act.
*Supply chain management records not maintained in orderly manner
*No construction contracts registered with the CIBD
On a visit to the Municipality on 14th January this year to assess key internal controls, the AG representative identified "poor record keeping and safeguarding of documents and monthly reporting on predetermined objectives not evident."
Heated discussions followed with ANC Councillors demanding to know why KPMG forensic audit report last year to suspend Supply Chain manager, Zakhiti Magubane had not been implemented and she was still in charge of that department. Also asked AG representative why no action taken in regard to R3million illegal expenditure.
Councillors were assured by the representative that the audit was totally unbiased and totally independent. The Mayor said he was proud of the officials but urged them to be cautious of the AG's comments and thanked them and Council for their support and hard work.
Further chaos erupted as ANC gave notice of intention to introduce a motion to remove Mayor and Exco members. Speaker, Councillor Hitla Maharaj struggled to keep order as Councillors from both parties loudly and repeatedly voiced their opinions ,without regard to procedures or protocol.
But more drama was to come. As Councillor Mavundla was talking, the Mayor banged on the table -claiming afterwards he wanted to get the attention of the Speaker who sits alongside him. Mavundla took exception to what he said was unbecoming behaviour and the ANC volubly demanded an apology from the Mayor.
The Mayor then announced that he had just received a "death threat" and left the Council Chamber, for a short while, to report to the Police. Greytown Station Commissioner, Lieutenant Colonel Mapalala confirmed that the Mayor had laid a charge of intimidation against Mavundla. Prior to departing the Mayor claimed that he would regard the media as biased if it did not report this.
Sense and sensibility was then introduced when ANC Councillor Titus Ngubane, (Exco member, past Mayor of Greytown) calmed the spirited debating by suggesting that Councillors show respect for the Speaker and spoke only when the Speaker indicated permission. The Speaker thanked Titus and said he always spoke sense in the "circus".
A presentation was then made by Richard Bates of Ocean Challenge on the development of a multi million rand shopping mall just outside town on Durban Street extension and Dundee road - and shopping centres in Kranskop. The Mayor organised a letter of intent to be signed there and then by the developer and the Municipality.
Depending on the financing, the developers are looking at the opening of the mall by December this year.
A report on a second presentation on solar power equipment on page 3
19 January 2011
Local Government Elections...Umvoti ward boundary changes
Voting day for the 2011 local government elections still has to be announced but a lot of interest has already been generated by the official lEC launch of its national campaign for the fourth democratic elections of Municipal Councils.
Umvoti’s 40 731 registered voters will need to check their details on the Voters’ Roll as a number of change shave been made by the Demarcation Board to wards and voting stations in the area.
The number of Umvoti Municipal Councillors will be increased from 21 to 22 -this is an additional PR appointment. The number of polling stations has also increased and there are now 68 polling station which will operate in Umvoti on registration weekends and also on Election Day . This is 12 more than in the last election.
As the boundaries of the wards have been altered so have Ward numbers been changed,. But voters are still required to register at the voting station where they will cast their vote on Election Day.
Examples of the new boundaries and the extent of the new wards can be seen from the following examples of the old Wards 1,2 and 3. Greytown residents in Ward 3 who previously voted at Greytown Junior School will still do -but this is now Ward 10 . New voting stations in Ward 10 are Seven Oaks;Upper Umvoti and Tholinhlanhla Primary Schools - these new stations show how the boundaries of this particular ward have changed. Ward 2 voters who previously voted at Greytown Town hall will still do but as Ward 9 voters. Previous Ward 1 voters now WArd 7 cover Buhlebuyeza School;Enhlalakahle hall; Smallhoek Primary School and Enseleni Creche. A balance of Greytown voters now fall into Ward 11 where the voting stations range from Elijah Christian Ministries in York Street to Lembether(Muden);Mount Ernestina School;Quarme farm school;Elsie Mtshali (Rietvlei road) and Itembani School (Holmesdale farm).
In order to avoid any confusion voters are urged to check their registration at their polling stations on 4th and 5th February or contact the various information sources listed at the end of this article.
Government still has to announce the date of the elections which is expected to be in May as the current term of office for Councillors ends on 1st March and the election legally has to be held with 90 days of that date.
Currently the voter roll has 23 181 997 registered voters and the IEC is aiming to register 1.5 million new voters targetting in particular young newly qualified voters.
There will be 20 868 polling stations which will be open for voter registration on the weekend of 5th and 6th February from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. A spokesman for the IEC told the Greytown Gazette that it was more than likely that a second registration weekend would take place on the 5th and 6th March./
At the IEC launch last Wednesday, the Chairperson, Dr Brigalia Bam unveiled the 2011 election logo which carries the slogan “Love your South Africa 2011 Municipal elections”
The 2011 municipal elections will take place in 8 metropolitan councils, 226 local councils, 44 district councils and 4277 wards. .
Just over 60 000 registration officials have been trained for the voter registration weekend and no less than 196 000 staff members will be recruited for Election Day. Party Liaison Committees have been consulted to ensure that presiding and deputy presiding officers comply with the criteria set for their appointment and that they would discharge their responsibility impartially and efficiently.
Members of the public can call 080 011 8000 on weekdays, between 8a.m. and 5 p.m. to check whether they are registered;or to check where to go if they are registering for the first time or have moved house.
Registration details can also be checked through the “Am I registered?” facility on the IEC website www.elections.org.za
An SMS facility has been made available to voters to check their registration details through a cell phone. on all three networks. A voter has to type in his/her identity number and send it to 32810 on all three networks and will in return receive confirmation of registration details.
FROM THE DITCH
From the Greytown Bowling Club to all readers of the esteemed Greytown Gazette, we wish you all the very best for the new year and hope to see many new faces enjoying the wonderful game of bowls this year.
We have two official bowls days, mid-week on Wednesdays (casual dress) starting at 2.00p.m. and Saturday afternoons (white dress) also at 2.00p.m.
Friday evening bowls at 5.00p.m. is an enjoyable social event and anyone interested is most welcome. Friday nights has proven to be very popular and picked up quite substantially after the festive season lay off with 17 players enjoying last Friday night.
Please note that there will be social bowls only this Friday but no bring and braai afterwards as the clubhouse has been booked for a private function.
ST CATHRYNS NEWS
The family fun day played at Umhlali golf club on 29th December was a great success,with 20 players taking part.
St Cathryns course holes, two, three, four, five and eight had a hollow tining and heavy scarifying which led to the postponement of the Farmers Agricare monthly mug to this Saturday, 22nd January.
Balance of greens will be done next week.The 12th green will be partially reconstructed due to a water drainage problem and will be out of play for February. Local rule that will apply is “play hole 12 to the 3rd green”.
Members are requested to support the Jen’s Jug challenge this Sunday in Greytown.
To book for golf please phone Piet on 033 444 1945 or 083 269 1661 and for the restaurant Paul on 084 596 6292.
Detour update ... nearly there!!!!!!!!
Latest information on the Greytown/Pietermaritzburg detour from KZN Department of Transport is as follows:
”The contractor has been on site for the ten days and is busy with the layers works. On completion of the layer works the surfacing will be done and it is anticipated that the road will be opened at the end of the month.”
This is the good news. The bad news is the motorists who believing that the rules of the road do not apply to them have been indiscriminately and irresponsibly ignoring the ruling for”residents only” and have been driving , whenever possible, on the detour. Not to mention the motorists who have bashed through on a farmer’s plantation road as well as using the surrounds as a dump site!
492 houses ...still in the pipeline
The only difference between this photograph and the last one published in July 2009 is that there are no construction workers or offices on site and that although the stands have been demarcated they are somewhat overgrown and neglected. Roads and pipelines remain unutilised.
However the to be house owners can once again start thinking of living in their own homes. Housing and Planning manager, Milton Chonco told the Greytown Gazette that the hold up had been as a result of the registration of the township which was now in the process of being finalised by the KZN Local Government Department. This could mean that work will start on the building of the houses next month . A meeting of the Housing Forum is to take place in March at which it is expected that the timeframe will be announced.
This project has been in the pipeline for a number of years. CSM Consulting Services spokesman told the Greytown Gazette last July that 487 houses were to be built with 5 sites being set aside for community centres, shops etc.
Concern has also been expressed about the impact of these additional houses on the Greytown water supply but the consultants stated that as the “majority of beneficiaries of the new homes will come from the Greytown area, the additional demand on the water supply is not as dramatic as it may seem.”
Whilst March 2010 was given as the completion date in July 2009, here’s hoping for the sake of the would be residents that by March 2011 there will be a positive start to the building of these houses.
GREYTOWN SPCA NEEDS YOUR HELP!
The following appeal has been received from Greytown SPCA by the Greytown Gazette which appeals to all readers to support, in whatever way possible, the wonderful work undertaken by our local SPCA. The appeal is as follows:
“We are desperately in need of funds for our monthly running expenses, and are appealing to you, the public, for assistance to help us to continue to provide a much needed service in the community;apart from dealing with numerous cruelty cases. taking in unwanted animals or finding a lost pet which requires us to be available on a 24 hour basis.
We would be most grateful for any contribution that you can make to our Society. This can be done by means of a monthly payment (even as little as R10 a month will help) via your monthly electricity/rates account.
By completing and signing the form below the municipality does us the service of adding the amount to your monthly electricity or rates bill and pays this over to us each month. This saves payment of bank charges on debit orders.
The form should be posted to SPCA, P.O. Box, 462 , Greytown.3250,
VOLUNTARY CONTRIBUTION FOR ESSENTIAL SERVICES:GREYTOWN SPCA
I am prepared to pay a monthly amount towards the running costs of the essential services provided by the Greytown SPCA and hereby give permission to the Umvoti Municipality to have the under mentioned amount added onto my monthly electricity/rates account and paid over to the Greytown SPCA.
MUNICIPALITY ELECTRICITY OR RATES ACCOUNT NUMBER........................................................................
NAME OF ACCOUNT HOLDER................................
MONTHLY AMOUNT R.............
(If applicable I am presently contributing an amount of R........and wish to increase this to the above amount)
SIGNATURE OF ACCOUNT HOLDER.............................
According to a report released by the motor insurance industry recently there are about 9,6 million motor vehicles in South Africa, of which an estimated 480 000 are unlicensed and 337 000 unroadworthy.
Almost a million drivers are out there with expired driving licences, and there are about 233 000 professional drivers with expired permits.
Then comes the really frightening bit: only 35% of all the vehicles on the roads are insured.
So if you are involved in a collision, the odds are the other person won’t be able to pay for any of the repairs.
POPULAR PANNAR JUNIOR TENNIS TOURNAMENT
Over fifty young tennis players gathered in Greytown last week, from all over the Midlands, to play in the popular junior tennis tournament sponsored by PANNAR and organised by Greytown professional coach, Derek Brown.
Really good tennis was played and not only did the youngsters improve their play but so enjoyed meeting up with old friends and meeting up with new.
Winners and runners-up(in brackets) of the various age groups were:
Singles: U10:G. Daugherty(L. Poree)
U14:L. Comins(J. Meyer)
U16:T. Mzila(D. Muller)
U10 G. Daugherty/C. Norris(O. Pride/B/Cotterrell
U12:L.Ogelsby/D. Trench(R. Goble/T. Norris)
U14:J. Meyer/L. Comins
U16:D. Muller/S. Cowie(J. Pearson/T. Mzila)
Singles:U10:M. Dutton (Y.Dube)
U12:H. Tedder(K. Pearson)
U14:C. Scott(H. Brown)
U16:R. Barnard(J. Brown)
U10:S.Ogelsby/Y.Dube(A. Cotterrell/M. Dutton)
U12:H. Tedder/J. Brown(J. Buchan/T. Poree)
U14:S and J Botha(C. Scott/H. Brown)
U16:C. O’Neill/R. Barnard(C. Botha/H. Pride)
U10:C. Norris/M. Dutton (G. Daugherty/A. Cotterrell
U12:R. Goble/H. Tedder(L. McGhie/K. Pearson
U14:I.Dede/L. Comins(J. Meyer/H. Brown)
U16:T. Mzila/R. Barnard(D. Muller/C. O’Neill)
PANNAR mixed doubles tournament takes place this Sunday 23rd January -entry fee R100 per player which includes lunch and tea eats. Club members are requested to bring along a plate of tea eats.
To enter please contact Wendy Edkins on 033 417 1808 or 082 771 7205. All players, including High School students welcome.
12 January 2011
ITS BECOME A MAJOR HEALTH HAZARD
Greytown residents have been complaining since the beginning of December about the major health hazard which has grown exponentially at the Municipal waste site -the compactor has been out of action for nearly six weeks - William Cooper of Logquip offered to have a look to sort it out but has had no response from the Municipality. In the meantime, township residents, in particular, are being plagued by flies, smells of rotting and decaying rubbish as well as the unseen menace of underground and ground water seepage.The Greytown Gazette has been monitoring and photographing the dump since early December - these photos have been sent to the Municipal officials. Another health hazard is not once have the workers at the dump been seen working with masks, gloves and gumboots which they claim have not been supplied to them. In an effort to improve this disgusting situation the Municipality has been using its TLB to load rubbish but this is not going to solve the basic unhealthy and dangerous problem
FOUR ARMED ROBBERS SHOT DEAD
Shortly after robbing a Greytown business, four armed robbers were shot dead in a shoot out with Police on the Kranskop/Greytown road. Early on the morning of Thursday 23rd December three men entered China's Engineering Services and at gunpoint demanded they be taken to the safe and given the money. However the safe was empty as the company does not keep money on the premises.
On seeing this the robbers assaulted the employees and then robbed them of cellphones, handbags, a chain and a gold watch. As the robbers fled, China Engineering staff alerted the police. Details of the getaway car, a navy blue Citi Golf with ND registration plates, were given.
En route to the scene Greytown Police spotted the vehicle and gave chase on the road to Kranskop and radioed the Kranskop Police to assist.They set up a road block on the R74.The robbers were forced to stop at the blockade and four armed men got out of the vehicle and immediately started firing at the Police. A shoot out ensued and one of the gang was shot while the others fled into the surrounding sugar cane fields. Members of the Pietermaritzburg Dog Unit arrived and joined the Greytown and Kranskop Police as the shoot out continued during which the remaining three gang members were shot dead.
Three unlicensed 9mm pistols, a Police 9mm Z88 pistol, with the serial number removed, handbags, cellphones, cash and jewellery were recovered by the Police from the vehicle. A number of expended 9mm cartridges were found on the scene
A Police spokesman said that the gang, believed to be part of a larger syndicate, had been behind several other robberies in Umvoti. One of the men was identified as 35 year old Msinga Gwala, a wellknown criminal wanted for several other armed robberies in Greytown and Kranskop
A bogus speed camera was used by a gang of armed men to hi-jack and rob a driver on the R622 Mooi River road in the Rietvlei policing precinct on Wednesday 29th December. Mr M. Mhlongo was driving his company truck, a white Toyota Dyna, when he noticed a speed camera on the road side -then a man ran into the road to flag him down. Stopping about 20 meters away Mr Mhlongo became suspicious on seeing a black Golf parked on the side of the road -he drove off but was forced to stop when the Golf swerved in front of him. Shots were fired at which Mr Mhlongo and his passenger fled into the bushes. He heard his truck being driven away. Rietvlei Police were informed and circulated details. Shortly afterwards the Police found the truck near Greytown but R20 000 cash was missing and the keys.
Acting on information received Mooi River Police arrested four men , recovered a bogus speed camera, the truck keys and cash to the value of R5 000.
A fifth suspect who fled in the black Golf is being sought.
ANC ‘DEMANDS’ ANSWERS FROM MAYOR
In a press release issued by Ahmed Shaikh, Umvoti ANC media spokesperson, following a special informal Council meeting called by the Mayor last Thursday to discuss solar energy provisions at which the Mayor apparently did not reply to the following:
“We demand that Mayor Ngubane answer the following questions.
a. Why does a private Chinese rental business which Mayor Ngubane courted enjoy financial assistance from council?
b. Why were Council resources in the form of a T.L.B used to hoist a commercial sign of this business in Durban Street?
c. Why has the Mayoral Vehicle until late being used to chauffeur these Chinese business men to and from work?
d. In our view this is a criminal offence in terms of Section 13, Forbidden activities and financial misconduct of the M.F.M.A (Municipal Financial Management Act)
e. We demand answers”
”Sifuna iMayor uNgubane aphendule lemibuzo elandelayoa.
a.Yini ndaba ibhizinisi lama China leli uMayor uNgubane elethula lithole usizo lwezezimale zomkhandlu?
b. Yinizonke izinto zomkhandlu zisetshenziselwa ukukhanyisa ibhizinisi lama China kuDurban Street
c. Kunjani imoto yeMayor isetshenziswa ekukhambiseni nasekulandeleni osomabhuzinisi bama China emsebenzi kuze kube late?
d.Ngokubona kwethu konke lokhu akukho emthemthwen ngokomthethu uSection 13b. Sifuna izimpendulo “.
FROM THE COURTS
New Year resolutions to the fore members arrived early on January 1st ready to start the new year on an active and healthy note - a great way to shed some of the festive season’s excess weight!
2011 tennis season starts on a high note with the annual PANNAR mixed doubles tennis tournament on Sunday, January 23rd. Please phone Clive Edkins ( tel. 03341-39544) or Wendy (03341-71808 or 0827717205) to enter. Starting time is 8H15 for 8H30 and the entry fee is R100 per person which includes a scrumptious meal. Players will be playing in different categories suiting the level of their game.
A reminder that the popular three day PANNAR junior tennis tournament starts tomorrow -players and spectators welcome.
We would like to extend an invitation to any visitors to Umvoti to come along to the Tennis Club on Saturday afternoons and remember to enter the tournament.
See you all at tennis on Saturday!
WEATHER ROUND UP
For Greytown weather followers the following details from PANNAR Research Data Processor, Ram Bhagdath, should be of interest:
Total rainfall for December was 150.8 mm. Most rain recorded: 29.6 on 2nd December; 18.4 on 11th December;15.6 on the 13th;12.6 on the 15th and 10.8 on the 16th.
So far this month the most rain has been 10.4 on 5th January.
In contrast to the freezing and snow filled days experienced by the editor in a very wintry United Kingdom the temps here were somewhat on the warmer side. Highest was 35.82 on 23rd December with between 30 and 34 degrees on the 1st; 22nd; 24th; 27th; 28th and 29th December.To counteract this heat the mercury hit a zero on 11th and 18th December!
January heat has been fairly modest in comparison -the highest temp so far 33.1 on the 2nd and the lowest 11.96 on 8th January.
Lake Merthley is 83.75% full and 0.550m below the wall.
SAFETY HINTS FROM THE POLICE
South Africa Police have issued the following safety hints, specifically for members of the public in Pietermaritzburg. However these are general safety and security measures which should be followed wherever - village, town or city.
· Be crime conscious - be aware of crime opportunities at all times
· If you are waiting to be collected, avoid waiting outside. Always try to wait inside a building if possible.
· Carry your bag around your neck and diagonally across your body – keeping it in front of you. Don’t carry it hanging over one shoulder. Put your wallet in an inside coat pocket or your front pocket of your pants – not in the back-pocket.
Try to walk in well lit busy streets and if possible walk in a group. If you know or suspect that a pedestrian is following you, go to the nearest busy area and contact the Police.
· If a vehicle follows you – never try to outrun it. Turn and walk in the opposite direction and react by shouting – to get the attention of others.
· Carry change or a phone card for emergency calls. Hide your cell phone and don’t walk around talking on it – as it will distract you from what is going on around you – and you will become an easy target.
· Avoid: taking short cuts through deserted areas such as parks, empty areas and passages; carrying large amounts of cash and laptops and cameras in public areas; wearing expensive jewelry in public places – you will become an easy target;going out unnecessarily after hours – especially on foot.
Round up of matric results
KwaZuluNatal beat the national matric pass rate by 3 percentage points with a 70.7% pass rate. Education MEC Senzo Mchunu said that the province would have done even better had not been for the public servant’s strike and the time lost to the World Cup.
Number of schools with 100% pass rates had increased from 81 to 118 .
The announcement that marks had been adjusted in some subjects has been criticised by education analysts who said that the practice could affect the qulaity of hte country’s education. Analysts and critics have urged the Department to be transparent as to how th marks were adjusted and in what subjects.
Results have not yet been recieved from the majority of schools in Umvoti as teachers only go back to schools this week. The Greytown Gazette appeals to these schools to submit their matric results ,photos where possible, not later than next Monday 10 a.m.
The following information has been recieved:
GREYTOWN HIGH SCHOOL
Well done to Greytown High School which has once again excelled and for the 19th consecutive year has achieved a 100% pass rate as well as improving the exemption rate from 71% in 2009 to 77% in 2010 with a group average of 62%.
77% of thje 53 pupils qualified to do a bachelor’s degree and 23% to study for a diploma.
Congratulations to top Umvoti achiever Jivesh Maharaj who achieved 7 A symbols -Math (95%); Physics (94%); Accountancy (88%); Life (86%); Life Science (84%); English (82%); Math3 (81%) and Afrikaans (75%). Jivesh, who is the son of Rohan and Kasturi Dedi Maharaj plans to study Mechanical Engineering at Wits University.
Hermannsburg Matrics once again achieved outstanding results in the IEB exams with all obtaining their National Senior Certificate at Bachelor degree university level.
Top achiever Karin Kassier achieved six A symbols and was in the top 1% of IEB matriculants in German second additional language; Life orientation and Life Sciences.
Maqhinga Memorial High School
Congratulations to 18 year old Londeka Magubane who obtained five distinctions in IsiZulu;English;Life Oreintation;Economics and Business Studies. Londeka was second in the Umvoti Circuit to Jivesh Maharah of Greytown High School.
Maqhinga principal Mr S. Msomi and Londeka’s teacher and HOD Commerce , Mr W.S. Zondi are delighted with the hardworking young lady’s outstanding results.
Londeka is to study for a B.Com (Accountancy ) at the University of KwaZuluNatal .
Mr Msomi said that she is the fifth pupil from the school to register for a B.Com degree since 2000.
The school had an above average 93.6% pass of 63 matrics who wrote - 16 bachelors; 28 dipliomas; 12 Higher and 22 national certificates were obtained
ST CATHRYN’S NEWS
The first Farmers Agri - Care Monthly Mug for the 2011 season was played on Saturday 18 December 2010. Unlike the SA Open played in Durban, our course was not as wet and play could start on time in great sunny weather. Although wet under foot, the sunshine burnt off the moisture and soon the golfers, all fourteen of them built up a sweat, because not only were they playing for the first Farmers Agri- Care Mug of the 2011 season but also for the start of the Grand Prix season .
With two nil returns due to one injury and the other a lack in confidence in his game, results were :.
1st : Barry Oehme nett 64
2nd : Mike Harrison nett 69
3rd : Merwin Rabe nett 71
Captains Putter: Peter Rommelspacher
Nearest to Pin 9/18th : Mike Harrison.
The AGM of the club was held after the Farmers Agri - Care Mug.The AGM is held in the form of report back, as the golf course is run as a private business.
A resolution was passed that if a golfer intends playing in any competitions at St Cathryns and does not have an official handicap, such player will then play off scratch. This rule would apply to all competitions played at St Cathryn’s and would be subject to the primary sponsor’s decision on the day.
Awards :Kluver Design Golfer of the year: Peter Rommelspacher.
1st : Peter Rommelspacher with 114 points.
2nd: Paul Els 112 Points
3rd : Merwin Rabe 103 Points.
St Cathryn’s Committee:
Club Captain : Paul Els
Committee : Klaus Kluver
Liekie Steyn( Ladies Captain)
Piet Nel. (Greenkeeper contract renewed for another year)
We request the payment of the new reduced subs that are due as the golfing year runs from the 1st January to the 31st December.
A special thanks was proposed to the Greytown club for the great working relationship that exists between the two clubs. Other special thanks was passed on to all gofers and sponsors of the club during the past year. The Fairway Restaurant sponsored a delicious supper that was enjoyed by all.
The Farmers Agri- Care Mug of Mugs was played on Sunday 19th December . This competition is played by all the previous winners of a Monthly Mug during the past year. . Unlike the winner of the SA Open, Ernie Els who has won the SA Open title five times, the Big Easy from Kranskop won his first Mug of Mug by one single shot.... ( Ernie also won by one shot.)
1st : Piet Nel nett 72
2nd : Merwin Rabe nett 73
3rd : Barry Oehme nett 74
Update GTN/PMBG detour
Start counting the “sleeps” . Latest information on the detour is that the road will be open in the last week of January. Department of Tranbsport spokesman states that the stabilization layer has to be finished and “then the surfacing will be done under traffic per lane.”
Its home is the hot, dry plains of southern Brazil, Uruguay and northern Argentina, but Portulaca is now grown throughout the world as a favourite summer bedding plant. Its popularity, especially in South Africa, is hardly surprising, as this tough little bedding plant rewards the garden with masses of brightly coloured blooms.
Portulacas, commonly known as ‘Vygies’, or moss roses, takes the heat better than most - in fact, the hotter it gets, the better they like it. The bright single or double flowers bloom freely in all shades except blue. Fairly low growing, they make ideal flower bed and hanging basket fillers.
New hybrids with a neat, compact form are now available. They come into bloom quicker and stay flowering for longer. They grow well in poor, sandy or gravelly soils, as long as it drains well. Most importantly they need a sunny home. Fortunately, while they are attractive to our eye, pests find them quite unappealing.
Information supplied by the Bedding Plant Growers Association. Go to www.lifeisagarden.co.za for more.
DO YOU KNOW HIM?
This magnificent Blue Tick youngster was rescued on the PMBG road near the PANNAR airfield turnoff at the beginning of December. He is well trained and in good condition so hopefully his owner out there will contact Greytown SPCA (033 4172274) and be reunited with this very special gentleman.
Any dog owners who “lost” dogs over the festive season please contact Greytown SPCA as they have a number of unclaimed dogs in the kennels.