Monday, January 30, 2012
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”
Thobeka Funani aka ‘supermodel’
Dineo Mokgosi (Above)
051 447 1655
JANUARY 27 - FEBRUARY 2 2012 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “Stha in dire straits” By Seleke Botsime
Stha in dire straits
It is not everyday when an angel comes along especially when times are as hard like now, but that shows that there are still those that still have UBuntu and that goes a long way.
That is Ntsikelelo Methusi who out of the blues decided to accommodate a stranger in his house without thinking twice. It has been three months that he has decided to stay with Sthandatho Lolo who originates from Xomvimvambo in a village called Sabelela.
Speaking to Mr Sithandatho who is in his mid-fourties, he said that he came to Bloemfontein for greener pastures in 1992. He said that he started to stay at the hostels when he came here and after sometime he fell in love and started a family where he had a child with his former wife. He added that there are four of them at home and both his parents have since passed on and now that he is sick and suffering from TB.
Sitha said that he came from a family of four whilst three of his siblings are living and working in Cape Town. He told Free state news that he would like to be reunited with his brothers and one little sister who are staying in Cape Town. Speaking about the unusual coming back of Tuberculosis since, he said that he started taking the medication from 98.
Free State news spoke to a recent graduate doctor, Dr Ntele who will be deployed to Eastern Cape since he studied with a bursary. Asking him why Stha’s tuberculosis keeps coming back like this, and he said that it’s difficult to get well with tuberculosis since Stha does not have a warm home to go to everyday. Also, he was sleeping on the street - during the night the temperature can drop and that too can make it a bit difficult for the medication to work properly.
Also, poor nutrition can be another factor, but the most important fact is that psychologically, he needs to be stress-free; and that can only happen if he stopped drinking and goes home to the people that understand him better.
Speaking to Free state news Stha showed that although he want to go back home, he seemed reluctant to go home now saying that he wishes to have an identity document before he leaves, but the problem is that he doesn’t have any birth certificate in order to apply for the ID.
When he was asked whether he has any relative from his home town, he said that he has one who is staying at Freedom West, but they are not on speaking terms, and even they won’t have any numbers of his close relatives since they too have moved to Bloemfontein long ago.
Speaking to the Ward Councillor, Nonkosi Khi about Stha’s situation, she said that the situation needs an intervention and she will be meeting with the community in order to find ways in order to make it possible that he must go home. “But in the meantime we would involve many stakeholders like the “Indians” who are renting shops in the ward and the community who can afford to donate food parcels to Stha. I will also find other avenues to take him home.”
A musical with a difference
By Dineo Mokgosi
This summer’s season of the Sand Du Plessis Theatre performances has just kicked off with four-day run of “Unbreakable Thread-Ubuntu vs Fear”.
This contemporary musical drama was directed by renowned theatre director Regina Nawa and written by Mothusi Mokoto and stars numerous accomplished theatre actors and television actors whose faces will be familiar to patrons who follow the theatre scene and are able to catch a glimpse of television every now and then.
The play is set at the Mthunywa household in Rocklands Bloemfontein, on the morning of January 08, 2012 and the family preparing to host Morena, friends, comrades and a few community members for a short ceremony. To prepare for the important day, Mkhulu Mthunywa, together with Morena, a Sangoma and a priest go to the heroes’ section of the cemetery to pay tribute to the fathers and mothers of our liberation struggle in a traditional ritual.
Upon their return from the cemetery, they arrive in the midst of diverse cultural dance festivities, from guests. In a short sermon, prior to the main festivities at the stadium, Moruti takes us through the journey of the formation of the ANC as a covenant made between the organisation and God on January 08, 1912.
As the elders later leave for the main festivities at the stadium, a conflict arises between Mkhulu and his granddaughter, Phetogo. The granddaughter is expressing frustration at the many unanswered questions she has been asking Mkhulu about the death of her parents in the struggle. She had been hoping that since Mkhulu had been writing a book on the liberation struggle, it might be the perfect place to find answers.
The main characters were played by Danny Jassoni, 34, as Mkhulu and Excellentia Rethabile Mokoena, 22, as Phetogo. Jassoni has acted in theatre productions such as Mid Summer Nights Dream, Julius Caesar and Maru; and also acted in television shows such as Molo-Fish and Ga Re Dumele on SABC 2.
“I thought the show went well. I believe people got the message. The message of Ubuntu which is what we should strive for in our everyday life. Let’s not forget who we are as the youth, as a people. In as much as there are differences now, there is still a lot to be done to rectify the wrongs of the past”, Jassoni said.
Mokoena has appeared in productions such as Op Soek Na Piet Khumalo and Mpumelelo.
“I’ve learnt a lot through playing this character. It hurts to find that people had to go through this for me to be here today. Youth need to be educated about our history”, Mokoena said.
Although poorly attended, the show ironically was a magnificent piece of theatre. The dancers executed a series of synchronous movements which brought euphoria into the Sand Du Plessies theatre as patron’s screamed at the sight of the dancers.
There is a dance scene which stands out as a masterpiece of choreography by Brian Mazibuko, the MK military training scene. “That is my favourite scene. We used Russian techniques with our choreography to do the scene”, Mazibuko said.
However, the amplication of the background music sometimes made it hard to hear what some actors were saying.
Stand out actors included Free State born actor and singer, Pesa Pheko, who has acted in big productions such as the Lion King and Sarafina, Sbongiseni (Khehla) Mguni, Katlego Khunou, Brian Mazibuko, who was also the choreographer, Abram Dithebe (Small) and the pint-sized 19-year-old singer from Welkom, Dikeledi Letebele.
Unbreakable Thread is an African National Congress (ANC) Centenary celebrations production that uses drama, music, reflection of historical experiences through movement and dance to showcase the values of Ubuntu.
The musical drama will showcase at the Sand Du Plessis Theatre until January 28, and every person, young and old will benefit immensely from attending the show piece.
EXCLUSIVE CASTLE LAGER LOCKER ROOM SESSIONS IN BLOEMFONTEIN
By Nthabiseng Lisele
It has been exhilarating times as the Locker Room sessions have been held at various locations around the country, such as the Wanderers Cricket Club in Johannesburg, Newlands Stadium in Cape Town, and most recently at the Chevrolet Park in Bloemfontein.
With the Cricket season in full swing, the proud sponsor of the Proteas, Castle Lager, have put together a series of exclusive Locker Room Sessions to kick-start the One Day International (ODI) series.
This session took place prior to the game of the Proteas against Sri Lanka. South Africa took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the series against Sri Lanka with a four run win on the D/L method after rain put a damper on the third match at Bloemfontein . After electing to bat, Sri Lanka did well to reach 266 for 9, and the match was stopped for a while because of rain.
The basic format of the evening was to enjoy a few cold Castles with some of the Proteas as they introduced specially invited guests to their locker room and shared some behind-the-scenes stories and insight.
Free State News gathered that this special event was a great platform for ordinary South African to see just how accessible and friendly our sportsmen really are.
Everyone was invited to chat and interact with them in this illuminating session, and people across the board were allowed to ask them questions.
As many people opined at the occasion, it appears that Castle always gets it right when putting together a “fan” experience. It really does come together with a Castle!
JANUARY 20 - JANUARY 26 2012 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “Zuma refulgent in Sasolburg” By Nthabiseng Lisele.
ZUMA REFULGENT IN SASOLBURG
…orchestrates Movement of the ANC Centenary torch
By NTHABISENG LISELE
President Jacob Zuma was at Fezile Dabi district in Sasolburg for the symbolic Movement of the Torch as it was one of the places chosen during ANC Centenary celebrations to host this torch movement around the Free State.
Premier Ace Magashule, during ANC Centenary celebrations also announced that the President of the ANC Jacob Zuma and other National Officials have handed the ANC Centenary Torch to the Provincial leadership of the Free State province.
Free State News gathered that the ANC centenary torch will be hosted by all five regions of the Free State Province with a total of 33 towns participating in the hosting, before it is handed to the Western Cape Province by the National Officials at the end of January.
And Sasolburg was one of the towns which were chosen to host the movement of the ANC Centenary torch. The President of South Africa while addressing the society at Sasolburg said that, “this torch is one of remembrance of what the first president of the ANC fought for back then”.
The late John Langalibalele ‘Mafukuzela’ Dube became the first president of the ANC in 1912 when the organisation of ANC was formed.
“Langalibalele Dube was a leader who fought for the future of his people and he was one of the greatest leaders who served the organisation with honesty”, Zuma said.
And according to Jackson Mthembu, the ANC National Spokesperson: “The main reason of the movement of the ANC centenary torch and its route is to highlight the role played by the various communities and individuals in the struggle against colonialism and apartheid”.
“The first province to host the National celebrations in provinces is the province of the Free State”, said Mthembu.
The ANC in the province has taken a decision to restore and upgrade the graves of ANC leaders who come from the Free State.
JANUARY 13 - JANUARY 19 2012 edition
FEATURE OF THE WEEK: “2011 Grade 12s ride crest of wave” By Nthabiseng Lisele
2011 GRADE 12s RIDE CREST OF WAVE!
BY NTHABISENG LISELE
The Department of Education started the year on a high note as it gleefully announced the matriculants’ results of 2011. MEC Tata Makgoe did the honours with aplomb.
The premier of the Free State, Ace Magashule, was one of the honourable guests during the 2011 grade 12 statistics announcements. Other luminaries who attended the occasion included principals, educators, parents; and most importantly the best achiever learners.
Free State News gathered that the grade 12 pass rate has improved since 2009 when it was 69.4%. In 2010 it was 70.7%, and last year (2011) it improved by 75.7%. The provincial target for 2011 was 75%, so the target measure was met in this case.
“The latter denotes an improvement of 5% of which we are happy and determined to work harder to improve upon the current academic year”, said a beaming MEC Tate Makgoe.
Generally, all the districts in the Free State delivered improved results in the 2011 grade 12 examinations. All districts performed above 70%, with two districts improving above the provincial target of 75% (Lejweleputswa 80%, and Xhariep 79.50%).
Free State schools have improved by a 20% pass rate. Thabo Mofutsanyana has the highest number of 15 schools that improved by more than 20%, followed by Lejweleputswa with 12 schools, Fezile Dabi with 10 schools, Motheo with 9 schools, and Xhariep with 3 schools.
The total number of schools that obtained a 100% pass in 2011 is 45. And Bainsvlei, a school located in an exceedingly impoverished area is amongst the 14 new entrants in the category of 100% schools. This school moved from 14% in 2009, to 80% in 2010, and 100% in 2011!
In 2011, 6 817 learners qualified to study towards a Bachelors degree, and 8 317 learners qualified to study towards Diploma studies.
From 2010 to 2011 there have been improvements in Maths, Physical Science and Accounting performance. Maths improved from 47.9% to 53.5%, Physical Science from 43.5% to 54.7% and Accounting from 53.4% to 59.5%.
The top achievers were showered with gifts. They managed to garner for themselves R 1 500-00 contributed by different Banks, Blackberry cellphone from Vodacom, and a full-time bursary from the Department of Education.
The best top candidates in Maths were Deidre Basson from Eunice High School who got 98%, Thaele Mokgomotsi from Nanabolela High School who excelled with 95%. In Physical Science: Deidre Basson from Eunice High School got 99.3%, Mhlophe Masoi from Mampoi Senior Secondary School got 100%. And in Accounting: Letsela Mantjhoto from Kgolathuto Senior Secondary School got 100%.
The MEC said: “We are celebrating the achievements of our grade 12 learners who made it in examinations. Our hearts go out to those who could not make it”.
Councillor Nonkosi Khi confronts challenges head-on!
Nonkosi Zukiswa Khi recently embarked on a long, tiring door to door campaign under the aegis of the African National Congress.
The councilor told Free State News that as the New Year gets underway it is important that people must revel in the membership card of the party in order to participate actively without any problem. “They should be vocal enough to bring changes within the structure of the organization. Now that the centenary celebration has been given a priority, there is still lot of work to be done in the ward.”
She emphasized the significance of reaching one million registered members. As regards her Ward 4, she pointed out that people must be aware that as they want change within the ward, strategizing was the key. “We must know that everything has to be tailored thoroughly from planning to budgeting, and that takes time. Namibia has been known as a place where one cannot move around, especially when it’s raining; and the only entrance that is manageable is the road that divides the police station and the Kagiso high school.”
Speaking about the challenges that are facing her ward she deprecated the rather poor attendance which she indicated was somewhat symptomatic of apathy. “People must become more aware about what is taking place within the Ward 4. Ward 4 has been having problems of sewerage especially on the east of it and water that flows excessively that makes it impossible for people to move around when it’s raining,” Nonkosi added that the Municipality is already aware of the challenges that people are facing.
When Free State news asked her why a place like Joe Slovo (townships) has bridges which makes things easier, she said that the problem is that Slovo was designed initially with the bridges integral, but Namibia was not. “So it’s important that people must not compare Slovo with Namibia since they are different from the blue print.”
Also, the road that starts from the school (Polokehong) is a national road, so it is a challenge for the Municipality just to make changes on their own without consulting. Speaking about the geyser problem, she said: “The Company that puts on the geyser faced a serious challenge when they had to put in the geyser in the RDP houses that are roofed with asbestos.”
However, she said that she instructed them to put in the geyser in one of the nearby houses, but unfortunately it fell right inside the house! “That’s when we realized that it could be deadly for people who are having asbestos roof…anyway, people must clean their yard and they must stop with the illegal dumping site as they don’t have any excuse. The rubbish truck always comes to our ward to take away the rubbish, and we must utilize this,”
On a lighter note, Nonkosi Zukiswa Khi ended by saying that there will be a lot of activity that will be taking place this year, especially for the youth. “This is in order to bring change and to show the people of Namibia that the Municipality cares deeply and we are trying to uproot the problems that people are faced with.”