Nelson Mandela covered most of South Africa during five decades fighting apartheid and five years as president, and it sometimes seems a museum has sprouted everywhere he set foot.
The 93-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner is among the world's most famous living icons, and re-tracing his steps is one of the country's major tourism draws. In Johannesburg alone, visitors can spend several days following the trail of Madiba - the clan name by which Mandela is affectionately known.
Whether you are Bill Gates, Lady Gaga or Julius Malema, chances are that your forefathers came from Eastern Cape. This is according to research by Curtis Marean, a professor at the Arizona State University, in the US. Curtis has just received funding of R10-million from the world's leading funding organisation, the National Science Foundation, to prove his theory that the Pinnacle Point golf estate did not produce only 2010 British Open winner Louis Oosthuizen, but the world's entire population.
The taxi industry wants to expand into other transport modes including buses, trains and even airplanes, the SA National Taxi Council (Santaco) says. "We will be launching a low-cost airline," Nkululeko Buthelezi, business development officer for Santaco, told potential investors and reporters in Johannesburg. "I can see some of you rolling your eyes because of how our taxi drivers drive... I can assure you we won't allow our taxi drivers to drive (the planes)." The airline would be officially unveiled on September 16 and take to the skies by November
Former Springboks have expressed their disgust and shock that the Springbok emblem has for the first time in its 105-year history been bumped off the chest of the jersey. However, the removal of the emblem from the chest of the jersey the South African team will wear at this year's World Cup, came as no surprise at the unveiling of the garment this week. The National Colours Act demands that all national teams wear the Protea on the left breast. As a result, the Springbok emblem had to shift to the right breast in 2010.
On the busy streets of Cape Town a group of artists dodge traffic and evade the police as they try to sell their work. For these Zimbabwean immigrants the "robots," South African slang for traffic lights, are the marketplace where they try and eke out a living. "Robots" in South Africa are a common place for township entrepreneurs to hawk their wares to passing motorists. But drivers are more used to being offered sunglasses or earmuffs than works of art. The artists who sell at the traffic lights each have their own story of hope and survival, many choosing to come to Cape Town for better work opportunities and living conditions.
Skinless chicken, fresh spring water and early morning walks across Pretoria. These are the ingredients that turned overweight health minister Aaron Motsoaledi into the trimmed-down man who challenged his chubby colleagues this week to eat fewer biscuits and cream buns in parliament. In an interview with the Sunday Times, Motsoaledi, a doctor, outlined plans to shed many kilos from the government gravy train, starting with himself.Skinless chicken, fresh spring water and early morning walks across Pretoria. "I was once obese, I must confess. You are always in a car, always invited to gala dinners. If you don't live on a strict diet you will find yourself bulging," he said.
As Joburg feels the first bitter bite of winter today, residents are all fired up over proposed electricity load-shedding schedules posted on the City Power website – warning of rolling blackouts as often as four nights a week. The frenzy was triggered by a mass e-mail campaign sparked by the updating of load-shedding schedules by Eskom and City Power. However, both the power utility and the city were quick to deny today that they were preparing for rolling blackouts. Joburg residents were seemingly unconvinced. Across the media this morning, residents from around the city have been raging about the load-shedding plan posted on the website.
It is nearly five years since the death of Vladimir Tretchikoff, the flamboyantly miniature businessman-painter, Cadillac owner and Bishopscourt resident, who in life often boasted that he was the richest artist in the world after Picasso. In this half-decade, strange things have happened, peculiar events that bear out an old legend. According to this legend, death is good for an artist, especially if they're doddering through the haze of a late career, their aptitude and stock in free fall.
South African Airways (SAA) is currently the only airline that can test the feasibility of using cellphones on its flights, the SA Civil Aviation Authority (Sacaa) said on Friday. "The Sacaa wishes to clarify that despite reports from some media outlets, SAA to date is the only operator/airline that officially applied and received the requisite exemption to test this possibility," spokesperson Kabelo Ledwaba said. He said SAA was granted a six-month exemption in January and that the testing phase started on April 15.
Like many biologists, the German biologist Oliver Zompro spends thousands of hours looking at specimens of dead animals. He found his first new species when he was twenty. By the age of thirty he had named dozens of wild new forms.Like many biologists, the German biologist Oliver Zompro spends thousands of hours looking at specimens of dead animals. He found his first new species when he was twenty. By the age of thirty he had named dozens of wild new forms. While other people around him did crossword puzzles and drank lattes, he explored the world, one animal at a time.
South African banking group Nedbank has opened the first partially wind-powered bank branch on the continent. The small informal settlement of Du Noon, just off Table Bay in the Western Cape province, was considered windy enough to install a Kestel e300i 1kW small wind turbine which produces up to 7.8kWh, enough to power the branch’s air conditioning, security systems, and all computers. It also produces energy for storage, which is fed to the branch during a power cut. The wind-generated energy is converted to three-phase electricity and then stored in an uninterruptable power supply.
For some homeowners, a squatter camp mushrooming next door could be a sign to start packing up. Darren Clarke, however, saw it as an opportunity to help start a decent rugby team. Clarke and other residents of well-heeled Noordhoek in Cape Town have teamed up with township rugby players to form the country's newest and most unusual rugby club. Members of the Masi Pumas include players from Noordhoek, one of the city's wealthiest areas, and Ocean View and Masiphumelele, two of the peninsula's poorest communities.
Oscar Pistorius' history-making participation at the world championships ended with a silver medal after his teammates guided South Africa to second in the 4x400m relay on Friday. The controversial 'Blade Runner', who runs with carbon fibre prosthetic running blades and was the first amputee to compete at the worlds, finished last in his semi-final heat in the individual 400m.
He was omitted from the relay team for the final, having run the first leg in qualifiers on Thursday, when South Africa finished third quickest.
South Africa is in its mid-year labour bargaining session known locally as "strike season", with unions seeking wage hikes about two to three-times the country's 5 percent inflation rate. The following are some questions and answers about the strike season and its impact on Africa's largest economy.
KwaZulu-Natal bathers need to be cautious as shark nets have been removed from most beaches due to the annual sardine run, the province's tourism MEC said in Durban. This was done as a precaution to prevent predators such sharks and dolphins getting caught in the nets while feeding on the sardines, Mike Mabuyakhulu told reporters in Durban after taking a flight to see shoals of sardines. “Currently shark safety gear has been removed between Salt Rock on the north coast and Port Edward on the south including Durban.”
Water shortages have been a problem for the country's oldest city since Jan van Riebeeck arrived. Ten years after the Dutch ship's captain settled in Cape Town he was forced to build a reservoir to deal with the problem. Professor Jenny Day, director of the Freshwater Research Unit at the University of Cape Town, said much has to be done to ensure that the Mother City does not dry up. This could even include pumping water from under Table Mountain.
A teenage harpist is heading off to a prestigious art school in the US after blowing away judges during an audition late last year. Vivienne Janse van Rensburg, 16, a grade 11 pupil from Northriding, northern Johannesburg, so impressed teachers at the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan that she was accepted "straight away". She had auditioned with three pieces - Dizi's Etude 14, Fantasie for Harp by Saint- Saëns and Scherzetto by Ibert - and bagged a scholarship worth nearly R100 000 a year.
It's like finding Moby Dick in Lake Ontario," says Tullis Onstott of the nematode worms his Princeton University team discovered living far beneath the Earth's surface in South Africa. The tiny worms – just 500 micrometres long – were found at depths ranging from 900 metres to 3.6 kilometres, in three gold mines in the Witwatersrand basin near Johannesburg. That's an astonishing find given that multicellular organisms are typically only found near the surface of the Earth's crust – Onstott's best guess is in the top 10 metres.
A granny with a walking stick has been accused of robbing at least two shoppers at a mall after duping them into helping her carry heavy bags from her car. The elderly woman was believed to be working as a decoy for a syndicate operating at Maponya Mall in Soweto. The trio targets young men standing in queues either to withdraw or deposit money at banks. Kabelo Dube, 18, who recently fell victim to the granny said: “I never suspected anything wicked about the old woman as she looked like a pensioner and had a walking stick.
A Cape cockroach, that can jump, has been named as one of the world's new top ten species. The "leaproach", which can grow up to one centimetre in length, was discovered in the Table Mountain National Park by scientists from the University of Cape Town, Beeld newspaper reported on Thursday. "Its jump is powerful... it has very strong back legs," said scientist Mike Picker of the zoology department.
On a beautiful autumn day, Johannesburg is quietly rusting. I sit at a pavement café, sipping a cappuccino in the gentle May sun. Life may not be perfect, but at least I have my health for now, a job and a future. Around me sit others apparently of similar good health and position. Life is good. Not that you'd know it. Listening to the conversations around me, this might be a besieged city in Libya. A woman complains bitterly to her husband about incompetent domestic help while their young children sip milk shakes. A man in a business suit bemoans the corrupt state of our government. An old man wearing a golf shirt says: "Education is finished in this country. They can't fix it."
Police raided the home of the leader of the Dagga Party of South Africa, but all they found were a few seeds. Jeremy Acton, whose party is registered in the Langeberg Municipality to contest the May 18 local government elections, said he was not at his Montagu farmhouse when police arrived early on Friday, but they questioned one of his workers and took him to the police station. “They took all the pips and took photographs of my marijuana graphics and a poem I have for meditation.”
When a handsome lawyer took a young social worker on their first date at an Indian restaurant – she getting her first taste of hot curry – it was unimaginable that bridges, municipalities, parks, squares, streets and theatres would one day bear his name. Or maybe just about imaginable to anyone who knew the prodigious Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. What would have seemed more incredible is that his companion that day, a self-confessed country bumpkin, is about to join the likes of Richard Nixon and Anna Nicole Smith as the eponymous subject of an opera.
The media is the main opposition ahead of the upcoming local elections, the ANC said on Tuesday. "We must realise that in this elections the main opposition is the media. Leave the DA, leave Cope... we will work very hard against that strong opposition,” ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said at a briefing at Luthuli House in Johannesburg.
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