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There’s no doubt in my mind that special investigation and national prosecution veteran Willie Hofmeyr is being side-lined by National Director of Public Prosecutions boss Shaun Abrahams.

Call me unscientific and anecdotal, but witnessing his career and behaviour, both since 1994 and against the apartheid riot police in greater Cape Town’s townships in the turbulent, flaming 80’s, convinces me of his integrity.

I watched Hofmeyr prostrate himself in front of the large wheels of a Casspir in Khayelitsha after the notorious Major Dolf Odendaal, (if memory serves), had arrested and loaded then Progressive Federal Party MP and activist, Jan van Eck, into the back of the vehicle. (Van Eck’s “crime”? Being in a township without express permission and/or within sight or sound of ‘’unrest”) Proper use of weird laws.

Today we have weird use of proper laws. I have no doubt about Hofmeyr’s backbone; his career is replete with examples. His superior, well…that’s a different story.

Abrahams has certainly shown very little respect for the track record and experience of his colleague, as this letter of complaint from social worker John GI Clarke to new Public Protector, Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane, highlights.

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Since Sanral CEO Nazir Alli announced his retirement in August last year, the Sanral Board has finally settled on Skhumbuzo Macozoma to take over. He first appeared in the pages of Sanral’s Annual Reports as a board member in 2006. Let’s not speculate why it took so long to name a successor when the person was there all the time. I give him the benefit of the doubt and offer him another story to ponder as he acclimatises.

Australians vest pride in the Sydney Harbour Bridge for its design and vital statistics. If they knew what lay beneath the surface and back in history they would be prouder still.

Bill Bryson in his book Down Under describes the bridge;

“From a distance it has a kind of gallant restraint, majestic but not assertive, but up close it is all might. It soars above you, so high that you could pass a ten-storey building beneath it, and looks like the heaviest thing on earth. Everything that is in it – the stone blocks in its four towers, the latticework of girders, the metal plates, the six-million rivets (with heads like halved apples) – is the biggest of its type you have ever seen... This is a great bridge.”

sydney bridge schematic

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 MRC Ltd has announced that it is disinvesting its 56% share in Transworld Energy and Minerals Pty Ltd, the applicants for the Xolobeni Mineral Sands project on the Pondoland Wild Coast, and has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with its Black Economic Empowerment partner “Keysha Investments 178”.  

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On Sunday 10 July Archbishop Emeritus Tutu again found himself the centre of media attraction when VIP’s crowded with Sunday worshippers and proudly Anglican church people to mark what was billed as the “40th Episcopal Thanksgiving Service for the Most Revd. Desmond Mpilo Tutu.”

 

Desmond Tutu 40th anniversary July 2016The Anglican Cathedral of St Mary in downtown Johannesburg played host to the celebration attended by former Presidents Thabo Mbeki and Kgalema Motlante, Minister Susan Shabangu (representing the Cabinet) and a range of other dignitaries, to give thanks for the outstanding Episcopal ministry of Archbishop Tutu who was ordained Bishop of the Church in the same cathedral forty years ago. His first appointment was as Bishop of the Diocese of Lesotho, but with the outbreak of the Soweto riots in 1976, he found himself increasingly drawn into prophetic mediation which earned him the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984, the Albert Schweitzer Prize for Humanitarianism in 1986; the Pacem in Terris Award in 1987 (awarded by the Catholic Church); the Sydney Peace Prize in 1999; the Gandhi Peace Prize in 2007; and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009.

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About John GI Clarke

John Clarke hopes to write the wrongs of the world, informed by his experience as a social worker and theologian, to actualise fundamental human rights and satisfy fundamental human needs.  He has lived in the urbanised concentration of Johannesburg, but has worked mainly in the rural reaches of the Wild Coast for the past decade.  From having paid a fortune in toll fees he believes he has earned the right to be critical of Sanral and other extractive institutions, and has not held back while supporting Sustaining the Wild Coast (www.swc.org.za), the Southern African Faith Communities Environment Institute (www.safcei.org.za) and the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (www.outa.co.za), in various ways.

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