DAY 133 of the national lockdown and health minister Dr Zwelini Mkhize stated in a TV interview on Wednesday morning that families were not having their children vaccinated from the usual childhood diseases such as polio, tuberculosis, diphtheria and rotavirus for fear of Covid-19. According to the department of health, children should be immunised against childhood diseases from birth to at least 12 years of age. Many diseases have been controlled and even eradicated over the last century precisely due to the introduction of childhood vaccinations, but there is growing conspiracy and concern that vaccines are used for nefarious purposes by governments to control the populace. Yet the fact remains that infant and childhood mortality rates have dropped hugely because of immunisation protocols introduced over the years and have saved tens of millions, if not billions, of lives.
A TRAGIC fire at Hayes Siding on Monday not only razed a house to the ground but all the personal possessions and memorabilia gathered over many years. The home, belonging to Warren Steenkamp, was completely destroyed. Steenkamp, well known for his company Rain Catchers, said all of his tools and equipment, including rainwater tanks, at his home had also been destroyed by the fire (see page 2 for the full story). In the meantime, several residents, including his sister Debbie Lowther, are collecting on behalf of Steenkamp. Judy Buckle at Out of the Blue and the Joba Café at the Heritage Mall have a trolley inside the store to collect items on his behalf and welcome any donations of clothes, food or other useful items.
AFTER Tuesday evening’s special council meeting (held remotely using Microsoft Teams) it seems municipal workers will be paid a 6.25% wage increase as of July 1. The National Treasury has stated that there is no money available to give such a rise, but trade unions point to the collective bargaining agreement that guarantees the 6.25% increase as a right. The South African Local Government Association (Salga), bearing in mind national Treasury’s cut-back of R160bn on provincial and national budgets, has made an alternative proposal of a total freeze on salaries as of June 1, off-set by a salary increase of 3.25% as from July 1 and a further increase of 3% as of January 1, the former deferred until January 1. But the unions have rejected this out of hand, demanding that municipalities pay according to their collective bargaining agreement. The ANC majority in council, with the support of the lone EFF councillor, approved the payment of 6.25% as from July 1 as per the historical salary and wage collective agrement. This means that, despite the job losses and business closures in the private sector, where people who still have jobs have endured pay cuts, municipal workers will receive a pay rise (along with their 13th and 14th annual cheque). How long are residents going to cope with sewage flowing down streets, dump sites spewing garbage all over the area, along with the noxious fumes of burning rubbish, poorly maintained roads, inconsistent refuse collection and so forth, while municipal workers receive guaranteed wage rises? The municipality must acknowledge that they work for residents who pay rates and service charges. If we endure wage losses and reductions, then they must do likewise.
BIRTHDAY congratulations and very best wishes for the year ahead to everyone having a special day this week, especially Edith Miskin, Adie Wilkins, Burg Naude, David McCowen, Barbara Spencer, Daphne MacLachlan, Pat Jones, Colleen Firth, Cecil Swart, Biff Todd, Nadia Grimbeek, Flora Kuhlane, Peter Smethurst, Alda Elliott, Lara Reed, Angie Botha, Toezie Turner, Nancy Schnehage, Lyn Haig, Elsie Merifield, Craig Robertson, Gill Marcus, Owen Moore, Lynda Clarke, Hannah Coetzee, Megan Waddington, Jimmy Joubert, Sandy Birch, Josh Harvey, Alan Hulley, Sandy Maclaghlan, Matthew Steck, George Morgan, Ian Macpherson, Una Webber, Jay Williams, Eric Strydom, Janene Lynn Turner, Hikash Maharaj, Michael Swanepoel, Yvonne Mackenzie and Jenni Muller.
BUSINESS anniversary congratulations and all the best for your continued success to Bushman’s Bar and Grill and Hendri Frankenfeld’s office at Rosehill Mall.
PETROL diesel and illuminating paraffin prices all rose at midnight on Tuesday; petrol by 5c per litre (all grades), diesel by 45c per litre (all grades) and paraffin by 39c per litre. With the rand currently experiencing significant pressure, this is not good news for consumers, particularly in respect to imported goods. With last year’s figures in brackets to compare against, the Rand was trading at R17.25 to the dollar (R14.84), R20.40 to the Euro (R16.60), R22.61 to the pound (R18.03). Commodities were trading at: Gold $2,034.39 per fine ounce ($1,487.78), Platinum at $940.80 per fine ounce ($857.27) and Brent Crude Oil at $44.47 ($58.61) per barrel.
SPECIAL thoughts and prayers are with all who are not well, having or have already had tests, operations and treatments. Sterkte Roy Potter, Andrew de Vries, Jenny Groenewald, Jan Haig, Si Little, Charlton Hilpert and family, Fred Golombick, Bevan and Linda Edwards and Bev Young.
OUR sincere and heartfelt condolences to the Charter family on the passing of Keri on Tuesday July 28. Special thoughts go to her husband Mark and daughter Noo. May cherished memories comfort you during this sad time.
WE are very sorry to hear of the passing of Renee Vroom on Saturday August 1, and we send our sincere condolences to her family and friends.
OUR sincere condolences to the family and friends of Douglas Haig who passed away on Wednesday July 29. May the wonderful memories left behind sustain you at this very difficult time.
DEEPEST sympathy and special thoughts to the family and friends of Brian Waddington who passed away on Saturday August 1 surrounded by his family. We especially think of his wife Margie.
WEDDING anniversary greetings, congratulations and best wishes for many more years ahead to all couples having an anniversary, especially David and Jean McCowen.
THOUGHT for the week: “A happy life consists in tranquillity of mind.”
BEST regards as always,