VW completes R6.1 billion investment

Volkswagen Group South Africa has completed its R6.1 billion investment programme in the country, which began in 2015.

Volkswagen Polo GTI

This was announced at the launch of its new Polo in Uitenhage, Eastern Cape, on Thursday.

Most of the investment was spent on capital expenditure for production facilities, local content tooling, quality assurance and manufacturing equipment as well as information technology upgrades.

Speaking at the event, VWSA chairman and managing director Thomas Schaefer lauded the government for introducing the Motor Industry Development Programme, which was later succeeded by the Automotive Production and Development Programme (APDP).

“The automotive sector of the South African economy accounts for approximately 7.4% of the GDP and accounts for the direct employment of 113 000 people. I am convinced that the next phase of the APDP will continue in the same vein and allow for continued automotive investment,” Schaefer said.

Eastern Cape premier Phumulo Masualle said the automotive sector is one of the key sectors in the province’s economy mix, which, if correctly leveraged, can see the province not only grow the regional economy and contribute towards further national economic growth, but also become a leader in modernising and re-skilling the work force.

“We are particularly encouraged by Volkswagen South Africa’s commitment to not only their continued and expanding investment in the South African economy, but also bold initiatives such as the announcement of an R86 million grant to SMMEs located in the manufacture and distribution space of automotive parts. This is a clear signal of the private sector accepting that South Africa’s future prosperity will depend on the societal effort all of us are prepared to invest, not just government.”

VWSA also said it had introduced the one-line concept for the first time as part of the investment. This will allow for two vehicle derivatives to be produced on the same production line.

The group said it had produced 110 000 cars in 2017. This is set to increase to 133 000 for 2018, of which 83 000 will be exported to markets around the world. This will include not only right-hand drive markets, but also to some left-hand drive markets, especially for the Polo GTI. Maximum annual plant capacity is expected to be reached with a three-shift operation of some 160 000 vehicles, in 2019.

source: Moneyweb

New Central Suppliers Database Registration

All existing and prospective service providers/creditors to the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality are hereby notified that, with effect from 1 July 2016, the municipal (NMBM) suppliers’ database, on which they may already be registered, will cease to be operative and an electronic Central Suppliers Database (CSD), developed by National Treasury, will be implemented. Accordingly, to be able to do business with the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality from 1 July 2016, all existing or prospective suppliers or creditors of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality are required to register on this Central Suppliers Database (Note: Only providers registered on the National Treasury CSD will be regarded as verified providers by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality).

The implementation of this Central Suppliers Database is motivated on the desire to reduce duplication of effort and cost for both business and government. Registering is to be done through self-registering on the CSD website. In the self-registering process, the National Treasury CSD will verify the following information from suppliers/creditors: (1) Business registration (including details of directorship); (2) Bank account holder information; (3) Employees in the service of the state (National and Provincial); (4) Tax compliance status (5); Directors’/Members’ identity details (6) Tender defaulting and restriction status.

Note, however, that the following cannot yet be automatically verified by the National Treasury CSD and must therefore be sent to the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) Compliance Office for verification purposes (the Municipality will receive daily updates on all successful applications for registration on the CSD website):

* Municipal Billing Clearance Certificate * National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC) Certificate * Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) Construction Registers Service (CSR) status and * Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) Certificate
The above must either be hand delivered or couriered to the following offices (note that this documentation must be accompanied by a completed NMBM Suppliers Verification Form, obtainable from the NMBM website (www.nelsonmandelabay.gov.za – go to “Public Notices”) or from the offices below):

The Supply Chain Management Compliance Office, Harrower Road Depot, corner of Buxton Avenue and Harrower Road, North End, Port Elizabeth


The Supply Chain Management Compliance Office, Budget and Treasury Customer Care office, ground floor, Town Hall Building, Market Street, Uitenhage

For more details, please contact the NMBM Database Administrator, tel. 041 506 3274/3266; Fax: 0865144305 ; email: scmdatabase@mandelametro.gov.za

Garden Town brand Uitenhage to be restored: Danny Jordan

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor Dr Danny Jordaan said life will be breathed into the Uitenhage Town Hall with the appointment of senior municipal personnel in Uitenhage and hard work will be put in to restore the Garden Town brand Uitenhage used to carry.

Danny Jordan Nelson Mandela Bay Mayor

Assistant Directors of different service delivery departments will be appointed to report for duty in Uitenhage with decision-making powers to directly respond to issues affecting residents and efforts such as the “love where you live” campaign to clean up the area.

Executive Directors reported to the community regarding current ongoing expenditure in Uitenhage wards, efforts to curb water leaks, fix potholes and specific economic development opportunities that exist and the review of high rates for public facilities. The planned construction of a desalination plant, study outcomes regarding the development of the township economy, the ocean economy, the redevelopment of Bayworld and the many other planned initiatives were highlighted.

“We have the will to solve your problems and know how to do it. I can assure you that we have solved much greater problems,” Dr Danny Jordaan said to an appreciative crowd at the Allanridge Hall.

Last year the municipality hosted a council meeting at the Uitenhage Indoor Sports Centre and Mayor Jordaan said another council meeting with a clear bias on economic development for the area will be convened soon.

source: RNews

Eastern Cape refugees in the Western Cape

by Mike Fraser

Helen Godzille DA dictator hates Eastern Cape refugeesSo black people who migrate from the Eastern Cape to the Western Cape have now been afforded refugee status by Premier Helen Zille.

The statement attributed to Helen Zille in which she is reported as referring to Eastern Cape pupils who flocked to the Western Cape for a better education as refugees is appalling,insensitive, degrading, insulting, and extremely dangerous.

Her statement was in reference to a protest in Grabouw over overcrowding at a school populated by black learners.

The statement is appalling, insensitive, degrading and insulting because the term is levelled at black people from the Eastern Cape. What about other ethnic groups who also stream into the Western Cape in search of better opportunities here. This is the first time ever that the term refugee has been used to describe South Africans who migrate from one province to another in search of better opportunities. Not even in the despicable darkest days of apartheid was this term ever used in the context that Helen has now.

I am one of many people who have relocated from the Eastern Cape to the Western Cape over the years.

Most of us moved to the Western Cape in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s because the Western Cape is where you came to further your studies for better opportunities. The colleges and universities have always been here.

And we came to the Western Cape in our numbers, from all over South Africa, long before the ANC was in power.

So why does Helen single out black people from the Eastern Cape as refugees in the Western Cape???

You will be amazed at how many people of all ethnic groups have come to the Western Cape over the years to seek better opportunities. Many academics, and other influential people from the Eastern Cape (and elsewhere) have settled here over the years, and they are making a valuable contribution to the success of this Province.

Academics that immediately come to mind are Prof Jakes Gerwel, Prof Roland Fray, Prof Clarence Williams, to name a few. So if you follow Helen’s logic then they are also refugees in the Western Cape.

But the dear premier of the Western Cape has chosen that the term refugee in her esteemed vocabulary refer only to black people from the Eastern Cape.

Her use of the term refugees in this context is also extremely dangerous.

We know how refugees from outside South Africa’s borders, who also happen to be black, are treated in our country. Refugees are violently attacked, driven out and killed by people who see them as a threat to their own survival in our country.

The protest action in Grabouw has now turned into “race row” exactly because of this absurd racist perception that is generally peddled in the Western Cape that black people belong in the Eastern Cape and coloureds are preferred in the Western Cape. Some black and coloured people of Grabouw are violently engaging each other in defence of the very little that they possess.

The Freedom Charter declares that South Africa belongs to all who live (and love) in it. So freedom of movement is a human right in our country. Why then does Helen Zille choose to politicise the movement of people. People will always migrate in the direction of better opportunities.

In a moment of trying to score political points over her arch political opponent, the ANC, for their mismanagement of the Eastern Cape, Helen has, in the process allowed a mad rush of blood to cloud her judgement.

Or is the botox treatment getting the better of her. By the way, Helen Zille also migrated to the Western Cape from Johannesburg.

Doesn’t that also make you a refugee Helen???

source: MyNews24

Uitenhage Man up on kidnapping charge

A UITENHAGE man arrested in connection with a tense 16-hour hostage drama in Port Elizabeth earlier this week appeared in the Motherwell magistrate‘s court yesterday

Xola Stanley Zembethe, 35, of Solundwana Street, is facing a charge of kidnapping following the incident in Motherwell.

The state opposes granting bail to Zembethe, who will now have to bring a formal bail application on February 26.

Zembethe allegedly threatened to douse his girlfriend‘s house with petrol following a long standoff with members of the police.

Police negotiators tried in vain to convince the Uitenhage man to hand himself over after he had earlier taken his girlfriend‘s sister and her two children hostage in Ndlovu Street.

Source :   The Herald

Agents find billionaire Stanford

FBI agents in the US state of Virginia have served Texan billionaire Sir Allen Stanford with civil legal papers from the US financial watchdog, the SEC.

Sir Allen, who disappeared from public view on Tuesday when he was accused by the SEC of an $8bn (£5.6bn) fraud, is believed to be in the Richmond area.

The SEC filed a civil case in court describing the case as a “fraud of shocking magnitude”.

He is not in custody and has not been charged with any criminal violations.

But officials from the US justice department, which handles criminal prosecutions, have made clear they are proceeding with their own investigation. FBI spokesman Richard Kolko said that FBI agents, acting at the request of the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission), had served the papers on Sir Allen in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

The Texan cricket impresario is accused of luring investors with promises of improbable and unsubstantiated high returns on certificates of deposit and other investments.

The SEC needed to serve the papers to ensure that he turned in his passport and was made aware of the proceedings against him, the BBC’s Richard Lister reports from Washington.

‘Very depressed’

Stressing that Sir Allen had not been arrested, Mr Kolko said he did not know if he had actually surrendered his passport. Giving few details, he said that agents from the FBI’s office in Richmond, Virginia, had “located and identified Stanford Financial Group chairman Allen Stanford in the Fredericksburg, Virginia area”.

The papers were served about 1345 local time (1845 GMT) on Thursday as Sir Allen sat in a car, and the authorities do not believe he had been purposely hiding from them, an unnamed law enforcement source told the Associated Press.

ABC News quoted one of the billionaire’s lobbyists, Ben Barnes, as saying that Sir Allen had been “very depressed”.He had sought to end a federal manhunt for him by directly approaching officials at the US justice department, Mr Barnes added.

Sir Allen’s father, James Stanford, told AP in Mexia, Texas, that he hoped the allegations against his son were untrue.

“I have no earthly knowledge of it,” said the 81-year-old, listed as chairman emeritus and a director for Stanford Financial Group.

“I would be totally surprised if there would be truth to it. And disappointed, heartbroken.”

Asked what advice he would give his son, he said: “Do the right thing.”

States intervene

Earlier, Peru and Venezuela became the latest countries to intervene in local banks controlled by the Stanford group.

Peru’s securities regulator suspended local operations of the Stanford Financial Group for 30 days and Venezuela said it would take control of Stanford Bank Venezuela.

Panama, Ecuador and Antigua also took action after the accusations against Sir Allen were reported.

Regulators were hoping to calm customers worried about investments as queues of worried investors have formed at banks associated with him in the US, the Caribbean and Latin America.

A civil court judge in the US has frozen the assets of Sir Allen and those of the Stanford Group, its Antigua-based subsidiary Stanford International Bank (SIB), and another subsidiary, investment adviser Stanford Capital Management.


Herbalist jailed for 15 years over fraud

CRIMINAL activities by some foreigners were among the reasons behind xenophobic attacks which left several people dead and families displaced last year, the New Brighton Court heard.

This was the view of magistrate NK Dungane when he jailed herbalist Garry Saum Ssempija for 15 years for defrauding a Uitenhage pensioner of R540000.

The victim, Jurie Chessman Harris, had worked for VW for more than 30 years and received a substantial pension from the car manufacturer.

In sentencing Ssempija, Dungane agreed with the investigating officer, Inspector Glen van Eck, who had testified that it was not uncommon for foreigners to be involved in criminal offences and the locals who accommodated them feeling cheated.

“This may be a factor which led to the xenophobic phenomenon on foreigners. It is not the first case of a similar nature that I have dealt with,” he said.

Harris‘s woes started in April 2007 when he was introduced to “Professor” Ssempija, who promised to heal his stomach ailment.

A gardener had referred Harris to the Ugandan herbalist who operated from the Bears building in Caledon Street, Uitenhage.

During a consultation Harris mentioned his pension payout and immediately Ssempija created the impression that ancestors wanted to bless him.

In May 2007, Ssempija convinced Harris that he had spoken to the “ancestors”, who were keen to make Harris a “successful businessman”.

He told Harris the “ancestors” wanted to speak to him in person. He was then led into a dark room where a voice identified itself as the “head ancestor”. The voice instructed him to open a bank account and to hand the card and pin number to the herbalist.

He also claimed to hear the voices of “ancestors” and to have seen a big brown coffin placed in a dark room containing an alleged R2-million which could be his at a later stage.

On four occasions between May 12 and June 22, 2007, Harris withdrew R540000 from his bank account and handed it to Ssempija to be blessed.

He did not get his life savings back. The state suspects it was the work of a syndicate.

“The complainant was cheated of part with his life savings under the pretext that he would be blessed by ancestors.

“He worked hard hoping that when he retired he would have something for the remainder of his life,” Dungane said.

Source: The Herald

Bull gores farmer in Eastern Cape

Johannesburg – A 71-year-old farmer was gored to death by his own bull after it broke out of its pen on Wednesday in Kareedouw near Uitenhage, Eastern Cape police said.

Superintendent Priscilla Naidu said Alan Desmond Germond of Melkhoutkraal tried to get the bull back into its pen around 09:00.

The bull charged and flung Germond into the air. He sustained an open wound to his stomach.

He died on scene.

The bull was shot and killed on the instruction of Germond’s son who was on his way to the farm from Grahamstown, said Naidu.


source news 24

Bus plan thrown into disarray

Sbongile Dimbaza and Mawande Jack HERALD REPORTERS

CONSTRUCTION of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in Nelson Mandela Bay has been thrown into disarray following new demands by taxi associations.

Operators want the project to be completely redesigned to allow taxis free reign in the city and that new bus lanes be built in certain areas, including Uitenhage and Motherwell.

The transport system, which is a national project and a Fifa prerequisite for all cities hosting World Cup matches next year, has been the cause of a series of transport strikes that have crippled the city during the past four months.

Last week, taxi associations called off the strike after the municipality agreed to negotiate on a possible redesign of the BRT system.

The radical new demands follow a meeting between the municipality and taxi associations on Monday, at which they presented a redesigned plan.

A dedicated BRT committee has until March 2 to study its impact.

Any change of plan is bound to further delay the key 2010 project, which is already behind schedule.

The taxi industry wants both bus and taxi operators to have equal access to BRT infrastructure in the central business district (CBD).

The associations also oppose the idea that they be “feeders” to buses.

Port Elizabeth and District Taxi Association chairman Melekile Hani said they had also suggested that dedicated bus lanes be incorporated in the plan for areas like Motherwell, Uitenhage, Stanford Road and Kempston Road to curb congestion.

“But nothing much was discussed regarding the regulation of the industry and other key areas we are in opposition to. The municipality has agreed to pay, on our behalf, for the drawing up of a business and operational plan.”

Municipal spokesman Kupido Baron confirmed the taxi bodies had submitted their report, but alterations could always be integrated into the current BRT plan. “If the situation constitutes that extra manpower should be brought in to meet the deadline, we will do exactly that.”

However, the municipality could not say when the project would be completed or how far behind schedule it was.

On Monday night, taxi representatives faced the wrath of residents at a meeting organised by the SA National Civics Organisation (Sanco).

Taxi operators were grilled and forced to publicly apologise by angry Motherwell residents for the hardships caused to commuters during last week‘s strike.

Some even insisted Hani be called to the meeting to be reprimanded.

Transport was disrupted and two clinics in Motherwell were also destroyed by fire during the strike.

A Motherwell community leader, Mxolisi Mani, insisted that the taxi representatives give the public reasons for the destruction of their facilities.

“Why must it be us the people who suffer?” he asked. “Why, each time there is a taxi strike, must it be the poor people who are the victims?”

The meeting, attended by councillors, political parties and civic bodies, saw sparks fly as residents threatened to boycott the taxi industry, which they described as being “infiltrated by thugs”.

The situation, which could have got out of hand, was saved by the arrival of councillor Fikile Desi, who urged the residents to “also understand the plight facing the taxi operators, who see the BRT as a means of forcing them out business”.

“Taxi operators are asking for forgiveness. They did that by cutting last Friday‘s taxi fares by half. We should instead say that the next time there is a strike, we should be consulted and that we do not want to see any violence,” Desi said.

Sanco chairman Toni Duba moved the attention of the residents away from the taxi drivers to mayor Nondumiso Maphazi, who he said had failed to attend the meeting although she had been invited.

“We wanted the mayor to come and address the residents. All the problems surrounding the whole BRT system have been caused by her,” said Duba.

In Johannesburg, Transport MEC Ignatius Jacobs said the BRT system would be introduced in Gauteng in time for the Confederations Cup kick-off in Johannesburg on June 14, despite opposition from taxi owners.

Jacobs said taxi owners had been included in the BRT planing process with the City of Johannesburg for the past two years.

“Now, at the stage of implementation, they are asking us to hold on?”

source The Herald

2010 Soccer Sout Africa Are We Ready?

Johannesburg – Pretoria stadium Loftus Versfeld will become the first of 10 venues for the 2010 World Cup to open for action when it hosts a Premier Soccer League match on Saturday.

The stadium’s renovation has been completed, including the installation of a new roof on one of its four stands, ahead of the World Cup finals next year, South African organising committee officials said on Wednesday.

Its capacity has been increased from 45,000 to 50,000.

The venue, first built in 1906, is also one of four stadiums to be used for the Confederations Cup, the eight-team warm-up event to be hosted in South Africa from June 14-28.

Renovations at the other three venues — Ellis Park in Johannesburg and stadiums in Bloemfontein and Rustenburg — were supposed to be completed last year but are still weeks away from being operational, officials said.

Loftus Versfeld will host Saturday’s match between Kaizer Chiefs and Moroka Swallows. It is also the home ground of rugby’s Blue Bulls and is the venue for a test between the touring British Lions and South Africa’s Springboks on June 27.

The six other 2010 World Cup stadiums are due to be completed by the end of this year.     source sports 24

The Nelson Mandela Bay municipality is confident that the stadium in Port Elizabeth will be complete by the March 2009 deadline set by Fifa, after the city’s readiness to host the 2009 Confederations Cup was brought into question earlier this year.

“Although the initial target set for completion of the stadium was set for December 2008, it has been extended to March 2009 and we are on track,” Nelson Mandela Bay municipality’s 2010 World Cup executive director Errol Heynes told fellow host city representatives, the French Trade Commission and members from the French Embassy in Port Elizabeth on Monday.

Heynes said outstanding development included roadwork around the stadium, the general finishing off of the west wing, insulation of information technology (IT) items, and landscaping and fencing.

The municipality will host eight matches during the world cup at the 48 000-seater stadium, which is situated about one kilometre from the beach front and right on the banks of a lake, which he said.

This allowed for enormous potential for growth and development, he said.

“We see the stadium as a catalyst for the building of a new economic node in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality,” Heynes said, adding the World Cup would significantly benefit small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) in terms of job creation, economic and skills development.

Public transport legacy

As for creating a public transport system capable of dealing with the influx of thousands of visitors, Heynes said the municipality would procure 450 buses as well as 2 000 mini-buses for the Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) system, which involves the creation of a dedicated bus lane within the city.

To avoid creating tension with existing taxi bosses, the municipality came up with a unique idea of giving taxi organisations ownership in the BRT system in order to avoid people losing their livelihood and in the interests of harmonising existing business with infrastructure development.

Five road projects in and around Port Elizabeth have been completed, and a tender has been put out for an access road project, while a public transport operations plan was also firmly in place.

Heynes pointed out that some of the challenges facing the municipality included the limited number of contractors within the municipality, securing environmental impact assessments for projects and capacity constraints in the delivery of the BRT system.

Source: BuaNews