Thursday, November 30, 2006

Well, it looks like another "bun fight" in the making - the police verses the scorpions! And whilst our supposedly policing presence fight it out - what happens to the criminals? Well obviously they just go about their normal day to day business of robbing/killing/raping their intended victims! Bizarre!

One point raised in the article however that should be highlighted is the fact that our police force do not seem to have been properly trained in the aspect of forensic's and blunder about crime scenes destroying evidence - sounds like it should be back to school for all of them.


The arrest of a friend of South Africa's top police officer for murder, signals further embarrassment for the beleaguered law enforcement agency in one of the world's most crime-ridden countries. Members of the elite Scorpions crime-fighting unit carried out the arrest of Johannesburg businessman Glenn Agliotti at dawn on Thursday for the mafia-style killing of mining tycoon Brett Kebble last year. But while the breakthrough in the case would normally have been a cause for celebration, Agliotti's friendship with national police Commissioner Jackie Selebi has instead triggered calls for the top cop's resignation."I've never denied my relationship with Glenn. Never.

It has never been a secret," Selebi told The Star, sister newspaper of the Pretoria News, on Friday. "I don't know of his alleged criminality. He did not tell me about it. "Commentators, however, believe that not only has Selebi been hugely damaged by his ties to Agliotti, long regarded as a key figure in the underworld, but so has President Thabo Mbeki's government, which expressed its confidence in Selebi only last week after reports that he was under the surveillance of the Scorpions. The Mail and Guardian weekly, which broke the story of the ties between the two men, said the arrest had "opened up perhaps the biggest can of legal worms in South Africa's criminal history". "Agliotti's arrest must come as a huge embarrassment to the police chief and to the Cabinet, which publicly backed him last week," the newspaper added. Opposition parties have been quick to capitalise on the situation. "How is it that in a civilised nation, we have a situation where a police commissioner is associated with someone whom people are referring to as a South African mafia don?" The main opposition Democratic Alliance's shadow security spokesperson Dianne Kohler-Barnard asked. The DA has called for Selebi to be axed by Safety and Security Minister Charles Nqakula, a particular whipping boy for the opposition parties since he told MPs that those "whingeing" about crime should emigrate. A spokesperson for the minister said Nqakula had only just returned from a trip to the United Nations and was "appraising himself of the situation". Kebble's murder was one of 18 528 carried out last year, making South Africa one of the homicide capitals of the world. Flaws in the investigation into Kebble's killing may explain why only a minority of murder cases are ever solved. David Klatzow, a forensic expert and private investigator who was hired by Kebble's family after the killing, said there had been a "tremendous" decline in the standard of the police's forensic work. "The damage to the scene was so gross and the abuse of normal procedures of forensic investigations and crime scene procurement so abysmal that it raised the question as to whether it was done deliberately in order to make prosecutions unviable," he told a public radio station. Others noted that it was the Scorpions, South Africa's version of the FBI and who are answerable to Mbeki, rather than the police to arrest Agliotti. Since its creation in 1999, the unit has shown a willingness to take on high-profile targets such as former British premier Margaret Thatcher's son Mark, who was arrested for financing an attempted coup in Equatorial Guinea. The Scorpions themselves, however, have not been immune from embarrassment. The former deputy director and former strategic operations unit chief are both facing charges of theft, fraud and corruption. It is an open secret that the Scorpions have managed to get up the nose of the regular police force."The fact that the Scorpions effected an arrest while the South African Police Service has been investigating the matter for more than a year, proves that the Scorpions have far better investigative skills and abilities than the police," said Kenneth Meshoe, leader of the African Christian Democratic Party. Kohler-Barnard said South Africa could ill afford any such rivalry. "How can you have a situation where the Scorpions are literally competing with the South African police force? When the entire nation should be focused on dealing with the criminals, instead we are watching infighting when they should be working as a team".

This article was originally published on page 8 of Pretoria News on November 18, 2006

Sunday, November 26, 2006


Well . . . it's Sunday again and time to bring at least a little smile to your face! I am sure that many of us can relate to at least one of these.

Have a brilliant week everybody!


12. I Hate Every Bone in Her Body But Mine.

11. It's Hard to Kiss the Lips At Night That Chewed Your Ass All Day.

10. If the Phone Don't Ring, You'll Know It's Me.

9. I Liked You Better Before I Got to Know You So Well.

8. I Still Miss You Baby, But My Aim's Gettin' Better.

7. I Wouldn't take her to a Dog Fight 'Cause I'm Afraid She'd Win.

6. I'll Marry You Tomorrow, But Let's Honeymoon Tonight.

5 . I'm So Miserable without you, It's like You're Still Here.

4. If I Had Shot You When I First wanted To, I'd Be Out Of Prison By now.

3. My Wife Ran Off With My Best Friend and I Sure Do Miss Him.

2. She Got the Ring and I Got the Finger.

. . . . And the number 1 Country Song is:

1. I Ain't Never Gone to Bed with Ugly Women But I've Sure Woke Up With a Few.

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Here we go again! Every time there is a problem with corruption in the Home Affairs Department (or any other one for that matter), we have to change our ID's/vehicle registration number plates/whatever, at great cost to ourselves in terms of a fee that needs to be paid as well as the time it takes for the process to take place.

What makes anyone think for one moment, that changing from the green ID book to card system is going to make it any different? The fact of the matter is that we were given the same story when we had to change our Driver's Licences to the card system and we all know how corrupt that is too - perhaps it is time to deal with the actual problem and not the sympton!

Finding someone quilty of fraud and dismissing them is not enough! These individuals should be prosecuted, fined and/or jailed - the consequences do not fit the crime! They are essentially stealing someone's identity.


The beleaguered department of home affairs has asked the SABC to provide it with the footage in which its Special Assignment programme recently exposed widespread corruption relating to identity documents. In a written reply to a parliamentary question, Home Affairs Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said the department wanted the footage to determine the dates on which the offences were committed before criminal charges could be laid against individuals and departmental officials. She said only one individual had been identified as a departmental employee. "The said employee has been suspended pending an investigation," said Mapisa-Nqakula.

In the documentary, the Special Assignment crew, working with a Zimbabwean citizen, went to six home affairs offices in different parts of the country and easily bought South African IDs and birth certificates for the woman. Shortly after the exposé, Mapisa-Nqakula said the green ID books had to make way for the card system as a matter of urgency because they were "contaminated" by criminals. She told MPs it was embarrassing and the challenge was "to tighten our systems in the department".

The department fired 122 officials between July 2005 and October this year. She said all had disciplinary hearings, were found guilty and dismissed. - Political Bureau

Friday, November 17, 2006



A few weeks ago, I wrote a story about my “first” experience of being on the red carpet for the SAFTA awards (South African Film & Television Awards) that I was privileged to attend with my friend Kim Clayton-Millar from the STAR. You may remember that it was an evening of glamour and excitement and sadly for me it has now become the last memory that I will have of Kim.

It is with a great sense of sadness and loss that I am here today to tell you of the passing of Kim.

Kim and I first met in 1971. I was a junior at Mabelreign Girls High in Zimbabwe at the time and Kim, being a few years older than me – a senior. Our lives crossed again whilst I was at Speciss College in the then Rhodesia and Kim who was passionate about writing, worked at the Bowling Alley, where all us students used to congregate, whilst she waited , not so patiently for the post that she wanted, above all else to become vacant in the then Rhodesian Herald – the leading newspaper at that time. She finally got that position and we were all so proud of our friend “the journalist”!

Both Kim and I belonged to a huge circle of friends who went everywhere together and did everything together. Whether it was hitchhiking to Gwelo (a town about 300 kms away) to attend a party or dressing up to go to Le Coq Dor, our favourite hangout place that we used to frequent to listen to her brother Bernie who was the lead singer in a group called Circus, who was very popular at the time here in South Africa, but who used to travel home regularly to visit the “folks”. There are many memories of happy, laughter filled Sunday lunches at “Annie’s” (Kim’s mother) and semi serious discussions of “the meaning of life”, that we never quite concluded, and always seemed to resurrect (just to see where the discussion would go now) over the years. Of persuading Kim to sing - it usually took a few vodka’s in those days. I will never forget the first time I heard her sing – the hair stood up on my arms, the crowd quietened as everyone watched this tiny person with the big rich, bold, husky voice, sing from her very soul!

Kim left for Johannesburg and joined the STAR and I went off to search for my future in Cape Town and we lost touch for several years, but I always knew where to find her – where stories were to be told, where music was to be made and where entertainment abounded – there I would always be able to find Kim.

I re-located to Johannesburg in the early 1980’s and once again hooked up with Kim and Annie. The “old” times came flooding back and we rushed about town going to all the “hotspots” where Kim made magic, with the stories she told of the lives she crossed. Lives full of promise, full of talent and full of dreams. It was Kim’s job to tell the world about these wonderfully blessed individuals who would bring so much joy and entertainment to our lives.
Sadly again Kim and I lost contact as I moved from the banking world into the Corporate world and finally out of the Corporate World into the Entrepreneur world, where I now own my own business. Late last year Kim and I hooked up again and neither of us could believe that more than 10 years had passed since we had last seen one another – yet we chatted as if it were no more than a few days. We laughed at all the “remember when” and “when last have you seen…” comments and discussions that abounded and all the “catch up conversations” – 10 years worth of memories can take quite a long time to tell you know.

We went to several shows together, the last one being the SAFTA awards and as I watched my friend’s health slowly deteriorate, I was constantly reminded of how important it is for us to live our lives to the full. Kim, although constantly battling with illness was full of laughter and jokes. She was always interested in hearing the story – every person has a story to tell and her passion was to write the story.

She was well known, well respected and much loved. She will be sadly missed by all whose lives she touched.

Herewith a copy of the unsubbed obituary that will appear in the STAR this afternoon.

"By Tonight Staffers
Kim Clayton-Millar was short and stout but larger and louder than life than life. She played various roles in The Star and most recently as a TV writer at the National Tonight, but previously she had been a news editor, music writer and acting Tonight editor and listings editor.Kim died today after a year of illness in which she was hospitalised twice, but each time she returned to work with many plans for improving her health.
She joined The Star for the first time about 28 years ago in the syndication department. For Kimmy the new millennium presented a challenge because she needed to integrate herself into a world of music that included kwaito and other such non-Rock and Roll delights. For Kimbo, the world was a place where feather boas, sequins and leopard skin outfits should rule supreme. She even went so far, two years ago, to earn extra money by making her inimitable "orgasmatrons" - strange-looking objects covered in faux leopard skin and feathers, which would be used to tickle the scalp. Kimmy also wandered the first floor of The Star's building flogging chocolate penises in two different shades of brown and one in white.Kimbo's knowledge of music from the 1960s onwards was impeccable, and if anyone ever had to remember the name of some obscure character in a soapie, she was the walking encyclopaedia. In almost every conversation, she would cause much laughter amongst her colleagues be ending any sentence with "blah blah fishpaste".
Those who had been invited to her flat over the years bore witness to a work-in-progress: an ever-evolving collection of vinyls, gadgets and freebie gimmicks she had acquired through the various television, music, gaming and entertainment companies.
When she returned to The Star after she attempted to start a business which failed, she had lost all her money and some of her spirit. But, those who knew her were privileged to see from time-to-time her laughter and naughtiness return with her husky voice and sense of humour. During her time at The Star she was no stranger to grief her brother and her best friend died within months of each other. But each time Kim returned, shouldering the devastation and continuing with her work.
Kimmy looked after her beloved mother Annie and those who were seated near her could overhear conversations with her mother that showed her intensity of feeling and concern for her mother's welfare.
We will miss you, Kimmy, and we know your friends and loved ones are waiting for you in heaven. "

My thoughts go to Annie, who must surely be devastated and her brother Bernie. To all her friends, acquaintances and colleagues – I am sure you will never forget her and I am equally sure that she will never forget you either.

Goodbye my friend, may the Gods (whomever you perceive them to be) make your journey to where ever you have gone, safe and secure.


Correct me if I am wrong here, but the view of this picture seems to be focused incorrectly and it has become quite fuzzy! A new trend seems to have appeared over the last couple of years where the perpetrator seems to have all the rights and the victims rights seem to have been lost along the way! Who cares what was written on a piece of paper and that the words were not 100% accurate - the fact of the matter is that this man raped a women. Not only did he rape her, but he did so with the full knowledge that he is HIV positive - effectively giving her a "death sentence"! Quite unperturbed that he has inflicted a death sentence on someone, he was also visciously violent towards her and yet all of this seems to have been overlooked and not considered at all because "the charge against him had not been correctly framed".!

Personally, I think that it is time that we, as a society got back to the basics and instead of giving all the power to the people, who abuse it in the worst way, we give it back to the victim from who it was taken in the first place!

The rapist has given his victim a death sentence, he should be punised with the equivalent - he should be given a life sentence!


Ingrid Oellermann November 13 2006 at 07:02AM

An HIV-positive man who raped a 43-year-old woman while knowing his HIV status, and who also "savagely" assaulted his victim during the incident last September, escaped a life imprisonment sentence on Friday because the charge against him had not been correctly framed in the charge sheet. Acting Judge Raj Badal said in the Pietermaritzburg High Court that there were two provisions under the Minimum Sentencing Act (the Criminal Law Amendment Act of 1997) in terms of which Mbongwa Petros Sithole, 39, of Inchanga, would have faced a minimum sentence of life imprisonment. One of these was the fact that he was HIV-positive at the time of the rape - which is seen as an aggravating factor - and the fact that he had subjected the victim to grievous bodily harm.

However, because Sithole was not told before his conviction on the rape charge that he might face a term of life imprisonment, and was warned that he could face a maximum of 15 years' imprisonment, the High Court found it would not be proper under the circumstances to invoke the provisions of the minimum sentences Act and impose life imprisonment on him. Sithole was sentenced by Badal to 15 years' imprisonment. The judge said the Camperdown regional magistrate and the prosecutor who had dealt with the case had not been aware of Sithole's HIV-positive status until he (Sithole) had given evidence in the case and could not be blamed because only he had known his status. However, the same did not apply to the grievous bodily harm that had accompanied the rape, said Badal. "The prosecutor was armed with these facts and should have alerted the court and framed the charge sheet in terms of the (relevant) Act," the judge said. State advocate Deelan Naidoo confirmed that the failure to correctly frame the charge sheet would be investigated.

This article was originally published on page 5 of The Mercury on November 13, 2006

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Is this "friend" of "foe"? I guess only time will tell. Hopefully it won't be a case of spending a heap of money in terms of fees (mentioned below) and time and effort to save a few pennies!


The new Advance Tax Ruling System - intended to promote clarity, consistency and certainty in the interpretation and application of the tax laws - came into effect on Monday. The system allows the commissioner to issue two new types of rulings - binding private rulings and binding general rulings, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) said in a statement. Under the system, taxpayers could formally request a ruling from the commissioner in connection with the interpretation and application of the tax laws to a specific proposed transaction, subject to certain limitations. Provided there was full disclosure of all material facts, the ruling would generally be binding on the commissioner when an assessment was made in connection with that transaction.

The commissioner would also publish all binding private rulings in an edited form to protect confidentiality to provide information and guidance to taxpayers generally, and to ensure all taxpayers operated on a level playing field. However, the binding effect only applied to the applicant who requested the ruling. The binding private rulings could not be cited as precedent by any other taxpayer. The commissioner would accept applications for binding private rulings from October 16, and all applications should be submitted electronically through the ATR Service Portal on the Sars eFiling site ( Applications were subject to both an application fee and a cost recovery fee. The application fee for SMMEs was R2 500, and for all other taxpayers, R10 000.The cost recovery fee would generally depend upon the complexity of the proposed transaction in question and the issues raised in the application. Sars said the Commissioner would continue issuing non-binding written opinions in response to taxpayer queries in connection with current or proposed transactions. These non-binding private opinions would remain free of charge, and could be requested at a taxpayer's branch office. Sars would conduct workshops and training sessions with practitioners and taxpayer organisations over the next two weeks to help familiarise people with the new system. - Sapa

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


How ironic then the "brain drain" that we are currently experiancing! We have a huge number of vacancies that cannot be filled because a) there is no one in the country qualified to do the job, b) the people qualified to do the job are retired c) the people qualified to do the job are the wrong colour or not "previously disadvantaged - so we import the skills from outside of the country.

Go figure!


One million job vacancies and four million unemployed people - that, says Finance Minister Trevor Manuel, is one of the key challenges South Africa is facing 12 years into democracy.
Speaking to the Pretoria News after his presentation of the Medium Term Budget policy statement to parliament on Wednesday, Manuel said while he was not holding out a "right-to-work banner", it was clear there was a skills mismatch that had to be dealt with. "If we do not fix this, we'll all sink together," he warned. Manuel said he was not criticising the education department or Naledi Pandor, its minister, who he said was doing a "good job", but the education system as it stood was not producing the right results.

To encourage a better match between education outcomes and what was required by universities and employers, Manuel said more money would be poured into ensuring that competent people were brought into the education system and that the teaching of science and mathematics was upgraded. But, he said, there was a need to monitor that this money was well spent and the desired outcomes achieved.

"We must put pressure on underperforming schools," he said. This was the only way to ensure a "cadre of people entered the labour market better able to compete". The dire state of education was highlighted last week in the Treasury's provincial budgets and expenditure review for the period 2002 to 2009. According to these reports, only 17 percent of matric candidates achieved the right to go to university. The Eastern Cape was the lowest with 8.8 percent; the Western Cape led the pack with just over one in four candidates doing well enough to study at university. Maths and science matric hopefuls fared even worse. Only 8.7 percent - one in 12 - of the 26 383 students who wrote mathematics on higher grade and one in six, or 16.5 percent, of the 29 965 who wrote physical science on higher grade, passed. These passes are essential for university entrance for many professions South Africa needs badly - such as engineering.

This article was originally published on page 1 of Pretoria News on October 26, 2006

Monday, November 13, 2006

Well so much for the employee's right to work in a safe environment. Surely the police should be patroling that stetch of road as a matter of course because of the stone throwing incidents! Two weeks of a "better police presence" means nothing if the contract is a year or two long. The police presence should be an ongoing thing.

These teenages, once caught should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the adult law - they are committing adult crimes and should therefore be treated as such.


By Karen Breytenbach

The engineering firm working on the N2 near Cape Town International Airport will hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday to brainstorm a solution to a worsening onslaught by armed teenaged thugs. Martin & East has been struck by juvenile criminals in 10 separate incidents of theft in the last month, including five violent attacks on its employees. Between January and October the company experienced 37 incidents of crime.

The contractor decided to stop working at night because its employees became too scared to work in the dark. They are now working at weekends, exacerbating traffic congestion. On Monday, Freddie Zimri, the contractor's traffic manager, was attacked by four youths armed with pangas and golf clubs. One smacked him on the legs with a club and, as he fell, the others robbed him of his shoes, cellphone and wallet. It happened near the Borcherds Quarry footbridge at 3pm, in broad daylight, as cars were driving past.

Zimri was in pain on Tuesday morning and was taken for x-rays to determine whether any bones had been fractured. On Sunday another employee, Kelly Maree, was accosted at the Vanguard Drive turnoff by five teenagers armed with knives and sticks. He managed to flee when two colleagues came to his aid. Three other employees, including a woman and an independent contractor, were robbed at knifepoint or gunpoint in the last month.

In each case a gang of armed teenagers fled into the nearby maze of shacks through holes in the roadside fence. No arrests have yet been made. From the start of the company's contract with the provincial government in January, up to the beginning of October, it has been robbed of equipment worth R300 000 and six employees have been held up by robbers. After the Cape Times reported on it, the company's engineers said they saw an increased police presence for about two weeks between Vanguard Drive and Borcherds Quarry. But since then the situation has worsened, said contract manager Justin Spreckley.

"As we feared, things are escalating. It started with petty crimes, but now it has developed into full-blown attacks," he said. Another major concern was cable theft from the concrete holes at the roadside, where street lamps are supposed to be erected."They are slowly but surely ensuring there's no light. They are generally degrading the infrastructure," said Spreckley. This despite a promise by the police to up their visibility on the highway after a spate of stone throwings earlier this year. One plus was that the firm had developed a good relationship with the police along the N2."Last week they were here in ten minutes when we reported that one of our bakkies had been broken into. They also promised to check up on us more often," said one employee. Police spokesperson Billy Jones said the N2 was a priority for the Flying Squad, Provincial Traffic and Metro Police. Gugulethu Station Commissioner Darius van der Ross had made personal contact with Martin & East site manager Eitner Truter, and they were always welcome to phone him on his cellphone, Jones said.Van der Ross would report any incidents at a weekly N2 priority meeting. "If we see an escalation, we can shift our focus," said Jones.

This article was originally published on page 1 of Cape Times on November 08, 2006

Sunday, November 12, 2006


Who would have thought that one of the greatest lessons we will ever learn from life will be from the experiance of "an ass"!


The Donkey
One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to becovered up anyway; it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey. He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first,the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up. As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon,everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off! Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick togetting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a stepping stone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up. Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

1. Free your heart from hatred - Forgive.
2. Free your mind from worries - Most never happen.
3. Live simply and appreciate what you have.
4. Give more.
5. Expect less NOW. Enough of that crap . . .The donkey later came back, and bit the shit out of the farmer who had tried to bury him. The gash from the bite got infected, and the farmer eventually died in agony from septic shock.

MORAL FROM TODAY'S LESSON:When you do something wrong, and try to cover your ass, it always comes back to bite you.


I know that this is quite a large document, but read it through - it may well save your life.



12 November 2006

Prepared by:

Inspector Riaan Steenkamp
Elsburg SAPS

Sponsored By:

1. Introduction 10
2. How to Avoid a Hijack Situation 14
2.1 Take Precautions: 14
2.2 Don’t Be Fooled By: 18
2.3 Know Your Environment : 19
3. How to reduce the risk 25
3.1 When Entering Your Vehicle and While Driving: 26
3.2 When Parking Your Vehicle: 31
4. What is a suspicious vehicle/person? 34
4.1 Vehicles 35
4.2 Persons 37
5. Questions and Answers 39

1. Introduction
This document was designed with the following in mind:
· To educate the public
· To assist the public in recognising what a suspicious vehicle and person may look like
· To emphasise the seriousness of hijackings on the person reading this awareness guide.
Hijacking is not a new or unique problem to South Africa.
The first hijacking was recorded in 1984.
Between January and August 1996, there were 8 740 hijackings in South Africa, of which 5 251 were in Gauteng.
Hijacking is also not only a problem just associated with industrial areas; e.g. Wadeville in Germiston, but rather a problem associated with the availability of a certain of vehicle.
In 90% of these cases the hijackers were armed, although only 1% of attacks involved a fatal shooting. This means that the better prepared a potential victim is, the greater probability of the person surviving the attack with limited physical injury.

2. How to Avoid a Hijack Situation

2.1 Take Precautions:
· Be familiar with your environment.
· Get to know who belongs in the vicinity of your home or workplace, and who does not.
· Keep your eyes open for anything out of the ordinary.
· Lock all doors and close windows before driving off.
· Try to vary your route to work, the gym – all places you travel to regularly.
· Hijackers are professionals too; they plan their attacks carefully.
· Ensure all your mirrors are adjusted to give you an optimal all-round view of your surroundings.
· Try to stop about 5m behind the car in front of you at a stop sign or traffic light – it makes for an easy getaway if trouble arises.

2.2 Don’t Be Fooled By:
· False appeals for help.
· “Accidents” such as having you car rammed from behind.
· Someone trying to get help from a stationary car.
· your electric gates being jammed

2.3 Know Your Environment :
· If approached by a stranger while in your car, drive off if possible and/or use your hooter to attract attention.
· Be constantly on the lookout for suspicious looking characters or vehicles and do not hesitate to report them to the Police.
· Always be on the alert for potential danger, and be on the lookout for possible escape routes and safe refuge along the way.
· If your suspicions are aroused by any person or vehicle in a high-risk area, treat it as hostile and take appropriate action (i.e. Ignore a red robot if it is safe to drive through; turn off and speed away from the perceived danger zone) and call for assistance where necessary.
· Always have your identity document and driver’s license on your person; and a pen and notepad ready to make necessary notes.
· If possible, avoid driving in the dark. Hijackers may stage a minor accident; e.g. If your car is bumped from behind and you do not feel comfortable with the individual/s involved in the situation, drive to the nearest Police Station for help.
· Never open your vehicle window or door for any stranger. If a suspicious person is near your unoccupied car, do not approach the vehicle. Keep walking to the nearest public area and ask for assistance.

3. How to reduce the risk
While there is no guarantee what action will prevent hijacking, practising the following common sense techniques can reduce the risk:

3.1 When Entering Your Vehicle and While Driving:
· Have your key ready, but not visible.
· Inspect the outside and inside of the vehicle before unlocking.
· Know your destination and directions to it, and be alert should you get lost.
· Always drive with your windows and doors locked and/or closed.
· Make a mental note of any Police Stations in the vicinity while driving.
· When dropping a passenger off, make sure that they are safely in their own vehicles before departing.
· Avoid driving through high crime or unfamiliar areas.
· Avoid driving late at night at/or the early hours of the morning when the roads are quiet.
· Drive in the centre lane away from pedestrians where possible.
· If possible, never drive alone.
· NEVER, EVER pick up hitchhikers.
· Never follow routine routes when driving; change on a regular basis.
· Do not leave windows open more than 5cm.

3.2 When Parking Your Vehicle:
· Check rear-view mirror to ensure that you are not being followed.
· When returning home after dark, ensure that there is an outside light on, or have someone meet you at the door.

· When exiting your vehicle, be cautious and aware of surrounding obstructions and shrubbery that may be concealing a hijacker.
· Never sit in your parked car without being conscious of your surroundings. Sleeping in a stationery vehicle is particularly dangerous.
· When approaching your driveway, be on the lookout for suspicious vehicles/persons.

4. What is a suspicious vehicle/person?
A suspicious vehicle/person is a vehicle/person that acts in a manner which may seem to be unusual or strange.

4.1 Vehicles
You are driving from your home; a new vehicle follows you for thirty minutes staying in the same lane as you, taking the same turn-offs as you.
If this vehicle has an old registration number e.g. HSG 090 T, the registration number is false, as all new cars should now have new Gauteng numbers plates.
The most important fact to remember while driving a motor vehicle is to be alert at all times. This is why the K53 driving method of driving is beneficial since the method concentrates a lot on the regular use of rear view mirrors.

4.2 Persons
A suspicious person can be any person that you feel acts in a strange manner. The problem with suspicious persons is that there are no distinguishing features. Hijackers come in any form or shape. Colour, race, sex or age are not distinguishing features.
The best way to identify a suspicious person is to see all unknown persons as being suspicious.

5. Questions and Answers

At traffic lights 7%
At a stop street or yield sign 6%
At other intersections 1%
In front of private residences 51%
At business premises 5%
At shops, post offices, telephone booths, etc 3%
At filling stations 1%
Victims sitting in parked cars 10%
Victims forced off road by decoys 4%
Victims parking, i.e. Either starting cars or
leaving/approaching parked cars 2%
Victims stationery and working at the roadside, i.e.
repairing telephone cables 2%
While loading and offloading goods 2%
By hitch-hikers 1%
While taxis are loading/offloading passengers 4%
Unknown 1%

To date, the overwhelming proportion of all the hijackers have been men, and occasionally women. operating in groups of four or five, sometimes more. The hijackers tend to be very young, in their teens and early twenties, although some victims report the presence of a ‘team leader’ who seemed older. Women are being used to lull potential victims into a false sense of security, since most of us feel less threatened in the presence of a woman as opposed to a man.
These people are sometimes well dressed, but not always. They may wear a jacket or jersey under which they may conceal weapons, mostly handguns and knives, but occasionally AK47 assault rifles.
The hijackers operate from motorcars, although they have been known to attack on foot. The cars they use vary, but are normally high performance vehicles, sometimes with tinted windows. Their driving habits are immediately suspicious. Before an attack they may cruise slowly around a particular area (often for days before the attack) without any apparent sense of purpose or specific direction. They may also simply sit in the car parked off the road or in a parking garage. Immediately after an attack, their driving patterns change dramatically. They will speed off, driving perhaps nervously and recklessly, but often with an air of bravado as if enjoying or flaunting publicly their total disregard for the law and the innocent person they have just attacked. They might ignore red traffic lights, jump stop streets and weave in and out through traffic, especially on motorways. This renders them highly visible to the public and this is where private citizens can play a vital role in assisting these people’s arrest.
The police are urging citizens to make use of the 10111 telephone number if they find themselves in a hijack situation. It is also open to anyone who sees a suspicious looking vehicle either following them or loitering around the neighbourhood.

· The “Freight” hijacking, in which a commercial vehicle is hijacked, is not only to secure the vehicle, but also its cargo, which can be of substantial value. Frequently, the cargo is of more interest to the hijacker than the truck.
· The “Transport” hijacking, in which the vehicle is taken for the express purpose of using as transport during other crimes such as drug trafficking, burglaries, bank robberies and gun running. The vehicles are probably later cannibalised for spare parts or simply dumped.
· The “Showmanship” hijacking, in which a gang operates out of egotistical bravado, acting on the “this is a cool thing to be doing” rationale. Peer group pressure is very high and individuals may be coerced into more dangerous and daredevil approaches, being labelled as a ‘sissy’ if they do not. Thus intimidation, violence and vandalism is associated with the crime.
· The “Operational” hijacking, in which a group formally work together in a more structured way. They usually have experience in car theft and have established contact within the motorcar underworld who will receive and pay cash for stolen vehicles or spare parts. They also often have information with regards to the international black market, e.g. The movement of stolen cars into South Africa’s neighbouring states.
· The “Syndicate” hijacking, which is the most organised of all and often has international connections. A network of hijacking groups is established with the overall co-ordinator syndicating out work so that he remains out of view in exactly the same way as the “drug barons” use pushers. This makes identifying and arresting the ultimate boss very difficult.
Additionally, a syndicate is often backed by a lot of money, especially if there are international links and makes full use of any potential to bribe the authorities in order to protect their operations.

· Ensure that anyone leaving your property can get into their car, start it, lock the doors and be fully prepared to drive off before the gates are opened. Consciously think about this every time someone leaves your premises.
· If possible, ensure that anyone leaving you premises can do so without having to reverse into the road. Reversing forces one to concentrate on the driving and not what lies outside the gate. It also greatly reduces visibility.
· If your visitors have to park in the street, escort them out on foot and check that the road is clear for them. If you have dogs, take them with you, especially after dark.
· Ensure that your gate and driveway are well lit after dark. Replace fused light bulbs immediately.
· Ensure that the number of your house is clearly visible at all times, night or day.
· Install electrically operated gates – consider these now a necessity rather than a luxury.
· If you have electric gates and a buzzer system, ensure that visitors can reach the buzzer without having to get out of their cars.
· At the home, when someone rings the bell and you have established that the person can enter your property, do not leave them stationary waiting outside for longer than is absolutely necessary.
· Either do not leave you property or hesitate to drive away from it if you spot a suspicious looking person or car in your immediate vicinity
· Be particularly alert if you live in a cul de sac, given their single point of entry and exit. More and more residents are reverting to closing off cul de sacs and employing a guard at the entrance. However, when considering this, do not forget to liaise with the City Council.
· When driving, avoid wearing flashy jewellery, heavy gold chains, large dangling earrings, gold watches, or anything that can be easily seen from a distance by a casual passer-by.
· Never leave any important documents in your car, i.e. cheque books, bank statements, invoices, telephone accounts, credit cards, keys, remote controls or personal post, anything that may provide personal details, either while stationary or driving.
· Vehicle tracking: the only solution to vehicle related crimes is to have tracking systems installed.

· No matter how outraged you may feel at the time, your prime objective must be to look after your personal safety and that of your passengers. The preservation of human life must take precedence over material assets.
· Do nothing that is going to alarm the hijackers. Never initiate any movement yourself. This may give the hijacker the impression that you are reaching for a gun or panic button. Remember – the hijackers will be as nervous, if not more so, than you. Do not motion with your hands. Rather tell the hijackers where they can find the items. Keep you hands clearly visible and as still as possible, ideally at chest level. Do not raise them above your head as the hijackers may interpret this as you trying to attract the attention of a third party.
· Answer any Questions truthfully especially with regard to firearms. If the hijacker finds out or suspects that you have lied to him, he is more likely to turn violent and unleash his frustrations on you physically.
· Even in your shocked and terrified state, try to listen to and understand exactly what they hijackers want from you.
· Try to concentrate on the possibility of identifying your attackers at a later stage. But remember – this does not mean staring at your attackers, making it obvious that you are looking for a means of identifying them. Stare openly at them and they will be less willing to release you, as they will think that you have incriminating evidence against them.
· If they kidnap you – co-operate with them fully. If you have a baby sleeping in the back seat which they may not have noticed, tell the attackers. Tell them that driving away with your child is only going to make things more difficult for them. Ask them if they can fetch your child. Do not move towards the car without their explicit directive. Tell them that a baby means them no harm and is no threat. Do the same if you have a pet in the car. Do not push the issue to the point where your life may be threatened at the expense of a pet.


Oh dear

Not sure what happened there. When I posted the article it came up that it could not be posted, so I tried again - and this is obviously the result!

I keep telling my IT guru and friend, Jack Rahme from Halcyon's Haven ( that he should also start a blog - he should call it "When Gremlins Munch!", clearly this is what happened here.

Apologies everyone.



Over the next couple of posts I am going to give you all some information regarding hijacking and how to avoid it or become aware of your surroundings so as to prevent it. This information was supplied on the Business Warrior Site (, and I believe that if we all take note, it could save our lives.

So here goes:-

Vehicle Hijacking

You may find the following information, issued by the Tracking companies, of use:

1. Everyone may be alert when driving, and then relax when reaching home. BUT - 67% of hijackings occur when drivers arrive at, or leave, their homes.

2. Be cautious who is following when you approach home - if necessary drive around the block again. Being followed home is the most common form of hijacking

3. Can you see where you are driving? It may pay you to put up a mirror so you can see over a wall to avoid surprises if someone is waiting for you! Owning dogs helps, as does clearing away foliage which could give cover. Palisade-type fencing, where you can see where you are going can help.

4. Put away your car as soon as you get home - don't wait until after dark! Opportunistic hijackers often wait and get you when you come out after your favourite TV program. (And they try to steal your car in broad daylight)!

5. If you are entertaining guests in your home/complex, say your farewells BEFORE you leave the house and stand in the complex / road outside. The more you stand, the more time you give the hijackers!

6. If you live in a complex / flats, and someone is using the intercom when you approach, BE CAREFUL. This is a favourite trick - they swing around, gun in hand, and car is gone - and somtimes lives! Rather spend 2 minutes driving around the block, or watch from a distance (ensuring no one else approaches you as you wait, of course)!


Over the next couple of posts I am going to give you all some information regarding hijacking and how to avoid it or become aware of your surroundings so as to prevent it. This information was supplied on the Business Warrior Site (, and I believe that if we all take note, it could save our lives.

So here goes:-

Vehicle Hijacking

You may find the following information, issued by the Tracking companies, of use:

1. Everyone may be alert when driving, and then relax when reaching home. BUT - 67% of hijackings occur when drivers arrive at, or leave, their homes.

2. Be cautious who is following when you approach home - if necessary drive around the block again. Being followed home is the most common form of hijacking

3. Can you see where you are driving? It may pay you to put up a mirror so you can see over a wall to avoid surprises if someone is waiting for you! Owning dogs helps, as does clearing away foliage which could give cover. Palisade-type fencing, where you can see where you are going can help.

4. Put away your car as soon as you get home - don't wait until after dark! Opportunistic hijackers often wait and get you when you come out after your favourite TV program. (And they try to steal your car in broad daylight)!

5. If you are entertaining guests in your home/complex, say your farewells BEFORE you leave the house and stand in the complex / road outside. The more you stand, the more time you give the hijackers!

6. If you live in a complex / flats, and someone is using the intercom when you approach, BE CAREFUL. This is a favourite trick - they swing around, gun in hand, and car is gone - and somtimes lives! Rather spend 2 minutes driving around the block, or watch from a distance (ensuring no one else approaches you as you wait, of course)!


Over the next couple of posts I am going to give you all some information regarding hijacking and how to avoid it or become aware of your surroundings so as to prevent it. This information was supplied on the Business Warrior Site (, and I believe that if we all take note, it could save our lives.

So here goes:-

Vehicle Hijacking

You may find the following information, issued by the Tracking companies, of use:

1. Everyone may be alert when driving, and then relax when reaching home. BUT - 67% of hijackings occur when drivers arrive at, or leave, their homes.

2. Be cautious who is following when you approach home - if necessary drive around the block again. Being followed home is the most common form of hijacking

3. Can you see where you are driving? It may pay you to put up a mirror so you can see over a wall to avoid surprises if someone is waiting for you! Owning dogs helps, as does clearing away foliage which could give cover. Palisade-type fencing, where you can see where you are going can help.

4. Put away your car as soon as you get home - don't wait until after dark! Opportunistic hijackers often wait and get you when you come out after your favourite TV program. (And they try to steal your car in broad daylight)!

5. If you are entertaining guests in your home/complex, say your farewells BEFORE you leave the house and stand in the complex / road outside. The more you stand, the more time you give the hijackers!

6. If you live in a complex / flats, and someone is using the intercom when you approach, BE CAREFUL. This is a favourite trick - they swing around, gun in hand, and car is gone - and somtimes lives! Rather spend 2 minutes driving around the block, or watch from a distance (ensuring no one else approaches you as you wait, of course)!

Thursday, November 09, 2006


So much for the "Poverty" makes people turn to crime theory! Does "Poverty" also make people become violent and agressive? Personally, my take on this is that criminals have been sent a message that there is very little, if no consequences at all, if they are caught - therefore there is no deterrant - so why not! Isn't time that Government woke up and started smelling the roses, or as in this case rather they should start smelling the manure!


A man who dragged a 52-year-old woman around her house for an hour while kicking and stabbing her was jailed for 15 years by the Pietermaritzburg High Court on Tuesday.Alannah Valentine required neuro-surgery following the attack in August last year.The man, Bongani Ndlovu, 23, of Pietermaritzburg, was convicted of aggravated robbery by Acting Judge Thandi Norman.Valentine's husband had gone to his factory as an alarm had gone off when Ndlovu and another man invaded their house and assaulted her.As they confronted her, Valentine fired her revolver, creasing Ndlovu's stomach. During an identity parade Valentine asked those in the line-up to expose their stomachs and a badly healed scar on Ndlovu's stomach confirmed Ndlovu as one of her attackers

Acquitting Ndlovu's co-accused, Kansas Madlala, 22, Norman said he had been given the benefit of a doubt but warned that he should not in future sell things which did not belong to him.She was referring to items taken from Valentine. There was no proof that when he sold the items he knew that they were stolen."When people are offered stolen goods they must inform the police immediately to discourage robbers," Norman said.Ndlovu and his accomplice robbed Valentine of watches, rings, a revolver, clothing, jewellery, a cellphone, CD player, semi-precious stones and money.Norman told Ndlovu: "You showed no respect for the victim. You invaded her home at night. A person's home is the person's castle. She was entitled to safety and to sleep peacefully."It is criminal to rob people to satisfy your own needs - there was evidence that an item was sold to buy liquor. "You may come from a poor family but there are many people who come from even poorer families who do not resort to crime.Norman turned down Ndlovu's application for leave to appeal against his conviction.The evidence identifying him as a robber was overwhelming, she said. - Sapa

Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Oh dear! How sad



October 10 2006 at 12:30PM
Johannesburg - An email scam promising people free beer has been reported to the police, SA Breweries said on Tuesday.It said the scam surfaced about three months ago.The electronic letter was being widely circulated in South Africa, promising free products from the company.Despite two warnings from SAB against the scam, the email had re-appeared."We have reported this issue to the commercial fraud unit of the SA Police Service for investigation," said the company in a statement received in Johannesburg."The e-mail resembles a 'chain' letter and promised 12 cases of SAB's products if an email was forwarded to 'ten friends', and then copied to a company which SAB had never heard of and had no dealings with," SAB said. - Sapa

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


Another excellent piece of advise from my colleagues at Business Warriors. It all makes perfect sense - now the challenge is to live your life in this manner!


Our best advice - to ourselves

Don't date because you are desperate.
Don't marry because you are miserable.
Don't have kids because you think your genes are superior.
Don't separate because you think it's fashionable.
Don't drink because you have troubles.
Don't gamble because you think winning is inevitable.
Don't philander because you think you are irresistible.
Don't associate with people you can't trust.
Don't cheat.
Don't lie.
Don't pretend.
Don't dictate because you are smarter.
Don't demand because you are stronger.
Don't sleep around because you think you are old enough and know better.
Don't hurt your kids because loving them is harder.
Don't sell yourself, your family, or your ideals.
Don't stagnate.
Don't regress.
Don't live in the past.
Time can't bring anything or anyone back.
Don't put your life on hold for possibly Mr/Mrs Right.
Don't throw your life away on absolutely Mr Wrong because your biological clock is ticking. Learn a new skill.
Find a new friend.
Start a new career.
Sometimes, there is no race to be won,
Only a price to be paid for some of life's hastier decisions.
To terminate your loneliness, reach out to the homeless.
To feed your nurturing instincts, care for the needy.
To fulfill your parenting fantasies, get a puppy.
Don't bring another life into this world for all the wrong reasons.
To make yourself happy, pursue your passions and be the best of what you can be.
Simplify your life.
Take away the clutter.
Get rid of destructive elements:abusive/ backstabbing "friends", nasty habits, and dangerous liaisons.
Don't abandon your responsibilities but don't overdose on duty.
Don't live life recklessly without thought and feeling for your family.
Be true to yourself.
Don't commit when you are not ready.
Don't keep others waiting needlessly.
Go on that trip. Don't postpone it.
Say those words. Don't let the moment pass.
Do what you have to, even at society's scorn.
Write poetry.
Love Deeply.
Walk barefoot.
Dance with wild abandon.
Cry at the movies.
Take care of yourself.
Don't wait for someone to take care of you.
You light up your life.
You drive yourself to your destination.
No one completes you - except YOU.
It is true that life does not get easier with age.
It only gets more challenging.
Don't be afraid.
Don't lose your capacity to love.
Pursue your passions.
Live your dreams.
Don't lose faith in your God.
Don't grow old. Just grow YOU!

This was posted on the Business Warrior site (
by Sharon
LIGHTwise Designs for you.

Monday, November 06, 2006


Wow! What a powerful piece and one that is so true of most of us and certainly of me in particular. I will surely be more aware of what I say verses what I mean in my converstations going forward. Certainly an "eye opener" for me.


Tessa Silberbauer09 October 2006 at 06h00

We live in a violent society. One of the most common complaints around the braai is the crime rate and violence around us, and also reflected in our movies and other art work. I don't believe that violence on TV encourages people to be more violent. We are not that easily controlled. But I have noticed how easily we point out faults in others while ignoring our own. Violence is the result of disrespect for others, for yourself, and a belief that you cannot get what you need by any other way. But there are many forms of violence; one of them is coldness towards a person who is trying to talk to us. Another is road rage - even if the angry person never gets out of the car.Have you noticed the phrases we tend to use when we feel strongly? "I can't stand it …", "There's nothing worse than …", "I hate it when …" and "It kills me …" Of course there's nothing wrong with this type of statement per se - but it is the language of excesses and of violence.It encourages the attitude that forgets the grey areas between black and white, that refuses to validate anything but its own thinking. In the moment of conversation, it discourages creative thinking, and reduces the chance of finding a middle ground between our opinions and those of the people that we're talking to. And we cannot create a peaceful environment if we ourselves are using violent language, because our way of talking is both created by and influences the way we think. I am not suggesting that this type of language creates people who have no control over their actions. What I am saying is that we are indulging in a way of thinking which creates emotional violence. One of the principles of self-mastery is regaining control over our own minds. And one of the ways - or paths - toward that goal is the careful choice of word or phrase. To say what you mean and to mean what you say, is very hard - harder than it sounds, and harder than it feels at first. It feels very easy - until we learn to notice the words and phrases we use in our speech and thinking.
When this is added to the fact that we converse by default not with attention it is further complicated. We are creatures of habit, and once we find ways and topics for communicating we tend to stay in those patterns for comfort. We seldom truly pay attention to each other. And we know this. Important things often get overlooked in conversations - or they are noticed but not acknowledged for one reason or another. We feel snubbed and so we try harder to be heard. Our conversation becomes driven more by others' actions than our own truths.And, of course, when everyone is trying to get acknowledged, we end up in a roomful of shouting people, which only deafens everyone.
Notice how you express yourself the next time you talk about something which you dislike. Look at the images and symbols you use, and the nature of those symbols.
Are those images congruent with your desire to create a peaceful environment?
How would you use non-aggressive images instead of violent speech? How different do those images feel?
Notice how difficult it is to change the habit of extreme language.
Can you use different language and still be heard? Can you create a personal space where both parties are heard, and neither is "fighting" for their opinions to be respected?
Tessa Silberbauer is a Joburg-based life management trainer. For information, corporate training or private consulting, contact her at 083-310-0955 or


This is a great article and it reminds me of one of Oprah's shows that featured Dr Phil, who said something along the lines of negotiation is about getting an outcome that is a win/win. It's no good if you win the battle only to lose the war.

Negotiation - like networking is about connecting with people at different levels.


Jules Newton16 October 2006 at 06h00

Life is a series of negotiations, whether it's trying to persuade your three-year-old to eat veggies before going off to a party, asking your boss for leave at the busiest time of year, or handling a major crisis with all the bosses in the boardroom. And your negotiation skills can make the difference between a good outcome and a bad one.Where people struggle in this area, is in their basic belief about what negotiation is. Most think it's about tricks and tactics, about beating the other person. In fact, it's about connecting - you don't have to "win". It's about two people with different points of view working out a solution. And if they're really clever and creative in their approach, they may be able to make the solution much better than it appears at the outset.Most programmes that teach negotiation skills teach you how to play games. But that's actually a very small part of negotiation. We recommend focusing on brushing up on your interpersonal skills, learning about how to understand others, and how to connect with the person you're negotiating with.Negotiating is not about fighting; it's about a healthy adversarial process. And it should be a positive process, not a negative one.Many people who attend our training sessions arrive with the attitude of, "I know what this is all about. You have to play games to gain an advantage." They soon change their tune, because we have a novel approach to negotiation. We believe it's pointless to create the kind of negotiation that has a winner and a loser. After all, it's not as if you're never going to see that person again - you have an ongoing relationship to maintain. So you might win today, but at what cost? We prefer the approach of "Let's figure it out together".Here are some of our tips for good negotiation, whether it's with your toddler, or in the executive boardroom:
Know yourself - what are you really good at? But also know where your weaknesses lie: a clear understanding of your strong and weak points will help you guard against manipulation from your adversary.
Know who you're dealing with - do your homework about the people you'll be negotiating with. Learn to recognise different personalities and approaches from their verbal, vocal and visual cues, and make accurate judgments about them on the spot.
Know what you want - be clear about what you want to achieve, what your elements of trade may be, and at what point you cannot make any further concessions. Lack of clarity can mean you agree to things that make the deal no longer worthwhile for you. Anticipate what the other party might want: there is no replacement for doing your homework.
Work the relationship - traditional negotiation creates adversaries rather than mutually beneficial relationships. It takes strength of character and skill to keep relationships intact while working through conflict in negotiation. To get a better deal, it's crucial to keep the relationship intact.
Be prepared to co-create - bringing different parties to the table also brings different points of view and skill sets: an openness to possibility can give birth to all sorts of new, creative approaches that could enhance what all parties gain from the conversation. And sometimes it's okay to "lose", because it may buy you some credit for later. You'll get more out of life if you co-operate with people.Avocado Vision offers two kinds of negotiation courses: one for the public and one for our clients, where we help companies improve on their day-to-day negotiation skills. We work with practical examples that our attendees have experienced in the past, and apply thorough principles to generate learning to change behaviour and approaches to negotiation. It's not like traditional role play with artificial situations. Negotiation is a vital life skill - more than most of us realise. We negotiate a whole lot of things every day without realising we're doing it. It's about creating a win-win situation wherever possible.It's important to remember, the implication that the tough guys win is really not accurate at all. They simply don't own up when they've lost. And often, through pretending that they've won, they shoot themselves in the foot. Having good negotiation skills really doesn't mean you have to play games with people, and walk all over them. You can negotiate well and still emerge from the process as the good guy.
Jules Newton is managing director of Avocado Vision. Contact them on 011-614-0206

Sunday, November 05, 2006


Good Grief!


October 03 2006 at 02:37AM

Oradea - The principal of a Romanian high school is to buy a breathalyser to test students and teachers in the morning.Principal Ruben Filimon, of Mihai Viteazul High School, in Oradea, Bihor country, said he noticed many students, and also teachers, appeared to be "very tired" when they come to school.He said the penalties for those who are caught off-guard will be a one day suspension and "a surprise anti hangover lesson". -

Friday, November 03, 2006


Good Day All

This is an article that is being penned by my own fair hand, and therefore I do not have to mention anyone’s name or where and when it was first published etc. It is the first article (other than my Introduction) that has been written by myself, so I hope you enjoy the story as much as I enjoyed living it.

It was my privilege to attend the SAFTA ceremony on Saturday evening. Perhaps I should give you the full story from the beginning.

I went to school (many years ago - ok, not that many!) with a girl by the name of Kim Clayton-Millar. Kim works for the Star newspaper here in Johannesburg and since part of her job is to watch as many SA shows on TV as is humanly possible, she was one of the journalists that was invited to the show to write an article for the Star. I was invited to go with her as in this particular instance, partners & friends were also invited.

What an honour - what a first! My first "Red Carpet" event! The gala event was held at Gallagher Estates in Midrand and was full of the pomp and ceremony that goes with any of these events. The name of the statue - The Golden Horn!

Dressed in my "formals" and as hot as Hades (remember we are in the middle of a heat wave), it was up the red carpet we went together with the actors and actresses, famous here in South Africa for the parts that they play in our local Soapies, Drama's, Movies etc. Walking next to people from shows like my favourite Egoli, or Isidingo, or Generations to name but a few. Camera's flashing and huge video camera's being carried by many who were back-peddling at a rate in order to get the shots.

Once in the huge hall, everyone made a b-line for the bar and the food - row upon row of metal containers full of delicious finger foods. The sound was deafening as everyone gathered together to slap colleagues on the back for winning a nomination (remember it is an honour to be nominated -well that's what they always tell us), or to greet old friends that you haven’t seen for awhile.

In view of the fact that Kim has been working for the Star for at least 100 years (or near as damn it thereabouts), many people came up to chat to her and I was introduced to most of them. I’m not going to mention any names because for the life of me I would not be able to remember them all. Suddenly I heard my name being called and there was one of my clients (and a friend) Louise Barnes of Louise Barnes Communications and her husband Brett of Ear Candy fame. So even I knew someone who was there! Actually something that Brett had been working on had been nominated for an award – Well Done Brett!

Pretty soon we were called to enter, yet another huge hall where tables had been set with gold table clothes and gold serviettes – about 10 chairs to each table. Huge cameras on big mechanical arms that swept almost onto stage and back again as the went past the guests sitting at the various tables. At the rear of the hall were seating stands where people could sit and watch the show live.

We were ushered to a table right in front of the stage, but slightly to the right of centre. At this point realizing that the cameras would be capturing the faces of everyone at the tables, I quickly sms’d all my friends and told them to watch the awards that were being transmitted live!

Categories were announced, nominees named and accolades were won by many. Singers came onto the stage and sang sweet melodies, my favourite on the night being Simpiwe Dana ( I hope that I have spelt her name correctly) who sang two soulful jazz numbers. Her rich melodious voice washing wonderfully over all of us. For those who are jazz lovers, I recommend getting your hands on anything that is sung by her. What a voice and what a tiny lady, with a huge presence!

The highlight of my evening was meeting Macks Papo (again forgive my spelling if it is not correct) of Egoli fame. Egoli, our first South African soapie is welcomed into my home 5 nights a week. I have been watching it from the very beginning and still enjoy all the twists and turns that only a soapie can take. Sadly, Egoli wasn’t even nominated for anything and I was hugely disappointed at this.

I also had the privilege of meeting Leletti Kumalo ( oh these African names – trying my best though) of Sarafina fame who was wearing a most magnificent ball gown.

The awards continued well into the night and it was well after midnight when everything wrapped up and then it was time to attend the after party.

Tired but content I got home in the small hours of the morning. As I drove home in the cool (after a rainstorm) night air, I smiled in memory of a wonderful evening, of new friends I had met and in thankfulness to the Gods (whomever you may perceive them to be) of the wonderful world that we live in, of the beauty of the New South Africa, of the incredible talent that we have here and of the yet untapped opportunities that abound us.

I am truly grateful and proud to be a South African.



Perhaps the country's crime rate is due to the saying "Lead by Example". If we cannot trust the very people that we put into Parliament, what chance do we have to trust even the people next door, or over the road, or down the street?

What kind of message is our esteemed Goverment sending out, by the manner in which they conduct themselves. The then fun begins when they go to court and then the charges just seem to disappear and they get off scott free - this too sends a message to Joe Public, that it is okay to lie and to steal from people, and so the saga continues round and round it goes.

My biggest disappointment was when Hansie Cronje was caught match fixing, it took years for me to be able to watch and enjoy a game a cricket and even now, when a ball is dropped that I think could have been caught, or a run not taken that I think could have been run - my immediate question now is "how much is he being paid".

So for me it is no longer just the question of accountability and consequence, it is the fundamental issue of trust that I can no longer have or enjoy with my fellow man. What a sad way to live the rest of my life! What a sad way to lose the innocence that I was born with, and what should be my God given right.


October 17 2006 at 11:15PM

Another two former MPs pleaded guilty on Tuesday to defrauding parliament allowances, bringing to 16 the number of current and former legislators who have agreed plea bargains in the scandal.Lead prosecutor Jannie van Vuuren said the two were ordered to pay a fine of R25 000 or spend three years in prison.Twenty-three current and former MPs, mostly from the ruling African National Congress, as well as a number of travel agents, faced criminal charges after defrauding parliament of millions of rands in bogus travel vouchers and hotel costs.The convictions follow several corruption cases to hit the ANC, whose former chief whip Tony Yengeni quit in 2003 after he was given a four-year jail sentence for graft.
President Thabo Mbeki fired his deputy Jacob Zuma last year after he was implicated in the fraud and corruption trial of a former financial adviser. Zuma was himself later charged, although those charges were thrown out of court.Van Vuuren said more MPs were expected to come forward and strike deals with the National Prosecuting Authority before the next court date on November 14."We are talking to the travel agents as well," he said.

Thursday, November 02, 2006


Hi All

Got this off the Business Warrior site - Smile ladies, this one is for you!


Something for the ladies
THE BEST E-MAIL OF THE YEAR!!!A man was sick and tired of going to work every day while his wife stayed home. He wanted her to see what he went through so hePrayed:"Dear Lord: I go to work every day and put in 8 hours while my wife merely stays at home. I want her to know what I go through, so please allow her body to switch with mine for a day. Amen.God, in his infinite wisdom, granted the man's wish.The next morning, sure enough, the man awoke as a woman He arose, cooked breakfast for his mate, awakened the kids, set out their school clothes, fed them breakfast, packed their lunches, drove them to school, came home and picked up the dry cleaning, took it to the cleaners and stopped at the bank to make a deposit, went grocery shopping, then drove home to putaway the groceries, paid the bills and balanced the chequebook.He cleaned the cat's litter box and bathed the dog. Then it was already 1 P.M. and he hurried to make the beds, do the laundry, vacuum, dust, and sweep and mop the kitchen floor.Ran to the school to pick up the kids and got into an argument with them on the way home. Set out milk and cookies and got the kids organised to do their homework, then set up the ironing board and watched TV while he did the ironing.At 4:30 he began peeling potatoes and washing vegetables for salad, breaded chops and snapped fresh beans for supper.After supper, he cleaned the kitchen, ran the dishwasher, folded laundry, bathed the kids, and put them to bed.At 9 P.M. he was exhausted and, though his daily chores weren't finished, he went to bed where he was expected to make love, which he managed to get through without complaint.The next morning, he awoke and immediately knelt by the bed and said: Lord, I don't know what I was thinking. I was so wrong to envy my wife's being able to stay home all day.Please, oh please, let us trade back."The Lord, in his infinite wisdom, replied: "My son, I feel you have learned your lesson and I will be happy to change things back to the way they were.You'll just have to wait nine months, though. You got pregnant last night."

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Oh! This one has got to be tongue in cheek! To all the homophobes out there - being gay is completely natural - so says the animal kingdom! Actually I cannot for the life of me think of anything profound to say - just goes to show you - sometimes things are, just what they are. As for the clergy wanting to change the behavior of "deviant" animals - well guys, perhaps it is your mindset that needs to change, it would be a whole lot cheaper and probably a lot more fun to watch!


October 27 2006 at 07:18AM

By Pierre-Henry DeshayesOslo - Giraffes mounting, aroused whales mating and dragonflies copulating - perfectly normal, tender scenes - although perhaps not for all, as in this case these animals are of the same sex.Breaking what is taboo for some, the Oslo Natural History Museum is currently showing an exhibition on homosexuality in the animal kingdom which organisers say is the first of its kind in the world."As homosexual people are often confronted with the argument that their way of living is against the principles of nature, we thought that... as a scientific institution, we could at least show that this is not true," exhibition organiser Geir Soeli said.
You can think whatever you want about homosexuals but you cannot use that argument because it is very natural, it's very common in animal kingdom," Soeli adds.From beetles to swans and creatures considered to have a more macho image, such as lions and sperm whales, homosexual behaviour has been detected in 1 500 species.The exhibition, entitled "Against Nature?", displays examples of this behaviour in pictures and models.In one image two female adult bonobo chimpanzees are having sex, oblivious to a young male who is attempting to join in.These peaceful primates - with whom man shares 99 percent of his genetic makeup - use sex as a stress reliever regardless of age and gender barriers.Be it a one-off, occasional or seasonal, homosexual and bisexual contact in the animal kingdom serves different purposes.Big horn sheep "need to have sex with their own fellows just to be accepted. And by being accepted they are making up very important social relations which later give them better access to females", says Soeli.Among swans and flamingos there have been cases of two females living together using sexual contact with males purely to reproduce."One of them might have a small affair with a male, have her eggs fertilised, and the two females bring up the young birds together just as a family," adds Soeli.It has been reported that in certain bird species males double up allowing them to control a larger territory than a heterosexual couple which in turn serves to attract more females.The first documented cases of supposed homosexuality in animals date back to the Greek philosopher Aristotle who, more than three centuries before Christ, was intrigued by the promiscuity of male hyenas.The subject was then ignored for many centuries, with incidents of male coupling conveniently described as part of fighting rituals."They did not describe it as homosexual activity, or as the result of lust," Soeli says."But animals have strong instincts... maybe they're having sex just because it's good," Soeli adds.While the images displayed at the Natural History Museum wash over passing school children, the exhibition has sparked consternation in conservative Christians.A Lutheran priest said he hoped the organisers would "burn in hell", and a Pentecostal priest lashed out at the exhibition saying taxpayers' money used for it would have been better spent helping the animals correct "their perversions and deviances". - Sapa-AFP