Neighbourly Notes – 4 May 2017

COMPLETING THE TEAM: Part of the team of waitrons at the Port Alfred High School 2017 matric farewell dance, held at the school, were, from left, Sarah Ford, Herman Pienaar and Siobhan Kukard, who introduced the attendants as they arrived.

THIS weekend is a lot quieter than the previous few weeks, perhaps because most of our tourists have gone back home. Let’s hope we have been hospitable enough for them to come back during the next holiday season and bring more money to the Sunshine Coast.

SATURDAY morning starts with the Christian Men’s Association breakfast that takes place at the Celebration Centre on Albany Road. The message this time around is unity in the Christian church. Then there’s the R72 Craft Market at the R72 Saloon, also on Albany Road. Finally, we have the Port Alfred High School pre-primary barn dance in the early evening. Make sure you join in the Port Alfred/Ndlambe spirit and get to one of these events.

HAVE you noticed that Port Alfred’s Masonic Street is currently being paved? After all the fuss about the roads in town being full of potholes, you would imagine anything that fixes the road surface would be welcomed. Well, aside from a little inconvenience (particularly if you live on the West Street end of Masonic Street) everything seems good. Well done to the municipality for taking care of this road.

HOWEVER (you suspected there was a “but”, didn’t you?) what about Biscay Road? Currently used by delivery trucks to offload goods at the SPAR and other businesses on that street, the road surface has been churned and torn by articulated trucks. There is no other place for the trucks to go but down to the bottom of Biscay and then attempt to turn around. Those not able to do this turn right and proceed to Masonic Street but, with the paving going on, they must now continue to Campbell Street and turn there. The space at the top of Campbell Street/Main Street, where the municipal buildings are, is already a nightmare for drivers with cars poking out too far into the road, and is more so now, with having to contend with articulated trucks. Please Ndlambe Municipality, get someone who understands traffic flow and is able to make suggestions as to how vehicles must negotiate this highly congested area.

THE ancient Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times” is certainly true in the case of President Jacob Zuma who was booed at the Cosatu (Confederation of South African Trade Unions) Workers’ Day celebrations on Monday, preventing him from making his address. Cosatu secretary-general Bheki Ntshalintshali said Cosatu had invited the ANC to send delegates to the rally, and had not invited the president to actually speak. Cosatu, along with its other leg of the tripartite alliance, the South African Communist Party (SACP), have expressed their wish for Zuma to step down even before the elective conference later this year where a new leader of the ANC will be elected.

SOCIAL Services Minister Bathabile Dlamini was a no-show at a sitting of the parliamentary select committee on social services on Tuesday. The select committee calls ministers and deputies to explain their actions and to plan for future projects, and is different from portfolio committees in that it is expected to assist departments stick to their plans and meet objectives. Landulile Dlamini, committee chairperson, said minister Dlamini and deputy minister Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu had only appeared once before the select committee in three years. “Often we will call ministers in three or four times a year.” Dlamini informed the committee on Tuesday she would not be attending as she had another meeting booked for that morning, but Landulile asserts that only a meeting with the president could take precedence. Minister Dlamini is still to be brought to task for her handling the social grants crisis for which she has never given a satisfactory (or wholly accurate) account.

AND, in a television interview on Monday evening, Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant basically accused workers of being ignorant of the great things that Zuma has done for them during his term in office. She said [the workers] would not have booed Zuma if they understood that working conditions had improved under his leadership. She followed this with defence of the president, saying that they were better off now than at any time in the past, implying workers should be thankful.

HAPPY birthday greetings and many more to everyone celebrating a special day in the week ahead, especially Daphne Smith, Roma Young, Albert Johnson, Loretta Hawkes, Chris le Roux, Gerhard Strydom, Gavin Muir, Pieter van Niekerk, Sharon Hammond, Yvonne van Gass, Anet Fraser, Gavin Dell, Jean Hope Bailie, twins Darcie and Olivia Squires, Charmaine de Klerk, Dylon van der Spuy, Matt Wood, Gerald Denston, Len Holford. Keith Reid, Carlynn Garden, Marge Strange, Vici Champion, Yvonne Robinson, Dick Schuurman, Basil Rudman, Glynis Mather-Pike, Justin Sheffield, Ntombise Diamond, Bess Nel, Anton Maclean, Marguerite Smit, Pumza Rungqu, Jenna Barnard, Kathy Duffy, Deane Eales, Ntsikelelo Nodwala, Nicole Norden, Vicky Nelson, Nigel Coster, Ryan Lisher, Lindy Thurgood, Brandon Rademan, Kirsten Baart, Tyler Pullen, Rafe McKinnon, Connie Abbott, Antjie Rodgers, Edward Donaghy, Beryl Bentley, Stewart Kemp, John Gaylord, Lauren Pretorius, Sonja Blenkinsop, Cheryl Larson, Lynn Rodgers, Anet Fraser, Juanita Lax, Lindy Hulley, Margie Stephenson, Ross Purdon, Kristen Fletcher, Storm Olivier, Angela Sousalis, May Bennett and Estelle Estevez.

WELCOME to the world Amelia Reese Nel, born on Friday April 21, the daughter of Rob and Michelle Nel.

BUSINESS anniversary congratulations followed by good wishes for continued success go to the following businesses and organisations, especially Pam Golding Boknes, Kenton Standard Bank, Sunny Sports (Main Street), Oxygen Fitness (Rosehill Mall), Buco (PA), Suncoast Kwikspar (Kenton-on-Sea) and certainly not forgetting the AA which was founded in Port Alfred in 1961, and which has been a godsend for many folk and their families since then and still going strong.

THE price of petrol went up by 49c a litre at midnight on Tuesday, diesel by between 30c and 35c and illuminating paraffin by 35 cents a litre. The government is blaming an increase in oil prices, but the real reasons are that South Africa’s currency is now totally devalued, and this is attributable to being downgraded to junk status after President Zuma’s ill-advised sacking of finance minister Pravin Gordhan. And, as always, it is the poorest that will be most affected. At the time of going to press (and with last year’s figures in brackets to compare against), the rand was trading at R13.38 to the dollar (R14.68), R17.25 to the pound (R21.23) and R14.60 to the euro (R16.85). Commodities such as gold was trading at $1 258.24 per fine ounce ($1 280.92), Platinum at $929.50 per fine ounce ($1 068.00) with price of Brent crude oil at $50.90 per barrel ($45.07).

SPECIAL thoughts and prayers are with all those folk who are not well, who are having or have already had tests, operations and treatments. “Sterkte” to Roy Potter, Andrew de Vries, June Hart, Dot Fetherstonhaugh, Ben Kember, Myrna Keet, Barbara Tee, Brenda Shelton.

SINCERE condolences to the family and friends of Mickey Rushmore who passed away recently.

HEARTFELT condolences to the family and friends of Tommy Meyer who passed away this week.

WEDDING anniversary congratulations with best wishes for many more years of happiness ahead for all couples having an anniversary, especially Michael and Moira Schnehage, Ivor and Lesley-Ann Phillips, Paul and Gillian Lacey, Okkie and Chantelle Goosen, Twan and Kyle Badenhorst, Andrew and Belinda Ross, Shane and Chelsea van Eeden.

THOUGHT for the week: “A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.”

BEST regards as always,
The Team

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