This web page(s) regularly focuses on the leading Free State (South Africa) newspaper – Free State News – the first regular newspaper to be orchestrated fully by black people in the Free State province. The paper has been published on a weekly basis since 1999. Regular items like “Feature of the week” have appeared here over the years.
Free State News crew
Maki Mohapi aka “Madam Maki” “H.C”
051 447 1655
JANUARY 28 – FEBRUARY 3 2011 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “She disappeared without a trace!” By Flaxman Qoopane. Page 2
She disappeared without a trace!
By Flaxman Qoopane
A mother of three children left home on 30 November 2010, and has not been seen since!
Dineo Mabeta  from Phase 10 in Mangaung told Free State news: “Our mother Maleshoane Veronica Mabeta  lived with my sister Masebabatso Mathetse  my brother Katleho Mathetse  and myself at Phase 10. On November last year at 09:30 a.m she went to attend a church service of the Jehova’s witnesses at phase 10 and she never came back at home.
According to her other daughter Masebabatso Maleshoane was reported at the Sonskyn Police station at Phase 5, as a missing person
Dineo Masebabatso and Katleho looked for their mother at all the hospitals and mortuaries in Bloemfontein, Botsabelo and Thaba Nchu. Unfortunately they could not trace her
Dineo said: “We are very worried about our mother. We don’t know whether she is still alive or she is dead. We are praying day and night that our mother must come home safely. We are desperate to meet her
Anyone with information about the where about Maleshoane Veronica Mabeta should contact the nearest police station, either Dineo; 082 056 5805 or Katleho; 073 658 0014
JANUARY 21 – JANUARY 28 2011 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “A splendid painting” By Flaxman Qoopane. Page 2
A Splendid Painting
By Flaxman Qoopane
Stephen Chinedu Achugwo has become famous in Mangaung for his splendid painting paying tribute to eleven international musicians.
Achugwo told Free State News: “I was commissioned by the owners of the Ekhayeni Pub & Grill to use oil colours on canvas to paint the following late musicians, Luciano Pavarotti, Tupac Shakur, Miles Davis, Michael Jackson, Luther Vandross.
Marvin Gaye, Barry White, Gerald Levert, Groover Washington, Notorius Big and Bob Marley, the painting is titled the last Super @ Ekhayeni the size of the painting is 3m by 1 and half meter.
His eye – catching paintings also hang on the walls of many business buildings in Bloemfontein. “During the World Cup, tourists bought many of my paintings. It has been my wish to sell some of my work to the tourists. I have also exhibited my paintings at several art galleries in Bloemfontein and also during Macufe festival in 2002.
Achugwo is from Nigeria. He came to South Africa in October 2002. “My philosophy in art is based on inspiration. I love creating paintings and artworks that inspire people. I believe that with inspiration, a man can achieve stupendous success in any calling.
“In the South African Society, today, where several efforts are made to encourage people for self – development. I hope to use my paintings to inspire South African people”, he concludes.
Also: (Page 5)
BARD REACTS TO BEING HONOURED!
This week Hector Kunene was announced as the “Free State Author of the Year” (2010). Already a well known bard, this is how Hector "Okonkwo" reacted ecstatically (via poetry!) to the news…
I failed dismally to find this piece a title!
How do I even begin to thank thee
When I am vocally wounded with glee
This magnanimous award just for me!
I could not have even afforded it with any fee
The Eclectic Writers Club has sent me world packing!
Packaging me through the wires to reach even the aging
A massacre avenging words to sink ignorance and sing for victorious parades
Can cards speak the truth like a heart does, but not diamonds neither clubs nor spades
What an accolade for a virgin who just lost his ink
Lost it in the middle of dotted lines that look pink
I blink, wink and think about such a moment of introspection
With gratitude to comrades who have bandaged me to benediction
These are the days of harvest
Every soldiers spear smeared with blood to recognize the bravest
The dough is ready for sunrise
Thus the territory is enlarged by grace with no price
- Hector S. Kunene
JANUARY 14 – JANUARY 20 2011 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “Son attacks Mom’s boyfriend!” By Flaxman Qoopane. Front page
Son attacks Mom’s boyfriend!
…Nurse’s uniforms destroyed in the process
By Flaxman Qoopane
The uniforms of a female nurse were destroyed by fire last Friday. Her son, who is an ex-convict allegedly hit his mother’s boyfriend with a brick on Saturday. The victim was rushed to the hospital. And the suspect was arrested on Sunday.
Letshego Tshepe (20) from Hillside View said: “On Friday at 5.30 pm, we were shocked when we discovered that the bedroom of our mother Peggy Tshepe (54) was on fire. Our mother was not at home – she had visited her boyfriend Piet Skweti (71) somewhere in Hillside View.”
He continued: “Our neighbours came to help us to extinguish the fire. The uniforms of my mother who works as nurse, her important documents, her beds, wardrobe were destroyed by fire. We don’t know what caused the fire,”
Peggy Tshepe’s son who is an ex-offender went to the house of Piet Skweti. Piet Skweti from Hillside View said: “The son of my girlfriend came to my house on Saturday at 7.45 am, we had an argument. He then hit my left arm with a brick. His mother tried to call him into order, but the son was stubborn he beat me in the face with a fist and eh managed to escape”
The grandfather was rushed to Pelonomi Hospital where was x-rayed and plaster was put on his injured arm. Piet Skweti went to Kagisanong Police Station to open a case against the son of his girlfriend.
The suspect was arrested by the cops on Sunday
FRAUDSTER has to repay R 35 580.00 to SASSA
By Flaxman Qoopane
Josephine Mamontsheng Roman (34) an employee at Trade Centre in Bloemfontein appeared in the Bloemfontein Regional Court 17 for allegedly defrauding the Free the South African Social Security Agency. (SASSA) an amount of R35 580.00 from 2004 until 2009.
Prosecutor Keith Muller said Mrs. Roman pleaded guilty to one count of fraud, she was sentenced to three years imprisonment which was suspended for five years. On condition that she continued to pay back the SASSA the money that she defrauded R 35 580.00.
According to Prosecutor Muller, Roman will pay R 350 per month. “Since February 2010 Mrs. Roman has been repaying the money to the SASSA. The Presiding Officer Mr. Koekemoer commended that it was a very common crime and that imprisonment would have been a suitable sentence for Mrs. Roman,”
She received a monthly foster care grant for a child (10) whose mother died in 2003, but told lies to the Commissioner of Child Welfare on 15 April 2004 that father of the child was unknown until October 2009.
In November 2009, Jacob Cebe former investigator from the Compliance and Fraud Management under the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) in Bloemfontein found that the father of the child was alive and has been maintaining his daughter; Jacob Cebe investigated the alleged fraud and opened a case of fraud against Josephine Roman of Phelindaba, at Kopanong Police Station in Mangaung. The case was transferred to Commercial Branch at Park Road Police Station in Bloemfontein.
Roman first appeared in the Bloemfontein District Court 19 on 12 May 2010 on charges of fraud. She pleased guilty in the Bloemfontein Regional Court 17 on 24 May and on 7 June.
Mr. Gerald Roberts Regional Executive Manager SASSA Free State Region said, SASSA does not tolerate fraud or anyone who defrauds it irrespective of who they are. The number of cases taken to court each year for fraud bears testimony to this. The Agency has made good progress in its against fraud and corruption. Thus far, the Agency in partnership with the special investigations Unit (SIU) has been able to investigate 14 513 people for grant fraud. As many as 12 540 of these were convicted and signed acknowledge of debt to repay the fraudulently received grants. In addition to those prosecuted an additional 18 174 people also signed acknowledgements of debt and are repaying the Agency.
SASSA is serious about uprooting fraud and corruption in the social grant environment. The Agency is there to ensure that it pays the right social grant to the right person who deserves it as government measure of poverty alleviation. A total amount of R61.3 m has a thus far been recovered.
Over 32 687 fraudulent grants were removed from the system in the current financial year. This is a clear message that SASSA has zero tolerance of people accessing social grants fraudulently. Society has to blow the whistle on this heinous crime as the fraudulent grant could have benefited someone in dire need. Those intending to defraud the Agency can rest assured that will be hunted down and prosecuted. They will face the full might of the law as in cases above.