Nuclearisation of Africa - Conference in pictures

Ode aan SA se Erin Brockoviche

Written by  Adriaan Basson Tuesday, 17 June 2014 21:45
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Moenie met ’n vrou mors nie, jy sal tweede kom.
Suid-Afrika het ’n trotse geskiedenis van brawe vroue wat hier opgestaan het vir wat reg is.
Frances Baard, Helen Suzman, Lilian Ngoyi, Patricia de Lille, Mariette Liefferink, Charlotte Maxeke, Irene Grootboom, Thuli Madonsela, Mamphela Ramphele en Sophia Williams-De Bruyn is almal vroue wat ons gedeelde geskiedenis ten goede verander het en steeds doen. En Emily Hobhouse, wat onthou sal word vir haar ontbloting van die gruwels in die Boere-konsentrasiekampe.

Deur Adriaan Basson

 


Vandag wil ek nog twee name by hierdie lysie voeg: Glynnis Breytenbach en Christine Anderson. Want hier reg onder ons neuse is hierdie twee brawe vroue besig om geskiedenis te maak.
Albei voel te na gekom deur twee van ons kern- demokratiese instellings: die nasionale vervolgingsgesag (NVG) en die weermag. En albei het besluit tot hier toe en nie verder nie.
Hulle verdedig – teen ’n groot geldelike en persoonlike koste – hul name en dit wat reg is.
Hul gedeelde opponent is ’n hardkoppige regering wat alles in die stryd sal werp om pres. Jacob Zuma te beskerm teen enige vorm van vervolging of bevraagtekening. Die hardkoppigheid word gefinansier uit ’n skynbaar bodemlose put van belastinggeld.
Breytenbach is nou al amper 18 maande lank uit haar pos as hoof van die NVG se handelsmisdaadtak in Pretoria. Dít nadat sy onskuldig bevind is in haar tugverhoor en die voormalige waarnemende hoof van die NVG, die hoogs problematiese adv. Nomgcobo Jiba, belowe het sy kan terugkeer na haar pos aan die einde van die verhoor.
18 maande later baklei Breytenbach steeds. Dít terwyl die NVG nou nie juis oorloop van talent nie en ’n aanklaer van Breytenbach se kaliber broodnodig het om die gróót skelms te vervolg.
Die storie loop mos só: Breytenbach wil lt.kol. Richard Mdluli aankla van korrupsie. Sy wil ook vir Imperial Crown Trading (ICT) in die hof sien oor die omstrede Sishen-mynlisensie wat aan die maatskappy toegeken is.
Wie is Mdluli? ’n Zuma-lojalis wat trou aan die president belowe het in die aanloop tot Desember se ANC-konferensie in Mangaung. As hoof van misdaadintelligensie het Mdluli toegang gehad tot dieselfde geheime (waarskynlik onwettige) opnames wat Zuma gebruik het om sy eie korrupsieverhoor vry te spring.
Wie is ICT? ’n Onbekende mynmaatskappy (sonder myne) wat deels besit word deur die Gupta-familie en adj.pres. Kgalema Motlanthe se meisie.
Toevallig dat die NVG alles in die stryd werp om Breytenbach se terugkeer te verhinder? Ek dink nie so nie.
Anderson bevind haar in ’n soortgelyke posisie. Drie maande voor haar aftrede kry sy in April ’n oproep van Bruce Koloane, hoof van staatsprotokol.
“Nommer Een,” sê Koloane aan haar, wil hê die Gupta-familie se bruilofsvlug moet op die Waterkloof-lugmagbasis land. “Nommer Een” is die staatshoof en Anderson voer haar opdrag uit.
Koloane het mos geen rede om vir haar te lieg nie? En hy noem “Nommer Een” nie net een keer nie, maar vertel haar ook van ’n vergadering wat hy met Zuma gehad het en dat die president wou weet of alles vir die landing in orde is.
Ná die landing bars alle hel los en koppe moet rol. Zuma se regering stel ’n ondersoekspan van ministers aan om hulself te ondersoek. Hulle bevind Koloane het gelieg (maar vra nie waarom nie) en dat Zuma se hande skoon is.
Koloane is terug by die werk. ’n Militêre verhoor staar Anderson in die gesig, maar sy gaan nie lê nie. Die waarheid maak seer en verlede week het sy Zuma onder eed geïmpliseer in Guptagate.
20 jaar ná vrywording is die uitkoms van Breytenbach en Anderson se sake ’n lakmoestoets vir ons demokrasie

MINING

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SA NEWS

Lauded for research on SA acid mine drainage

The launch of Acid mine drainage in South Africa: Development actors, policy impacts and broader implications, by Suvania Naidoo, took place on 10 February 2017. The book has proven to be a timely publication because of the incipient water crisis in South Africa. The event was hosted by Unisa’s Department of Development Studies in the College of Human Sciences. The guests were welcomed by the chair of the department, Prof Gretchen du Plessis, who expressed that “development studies is an ever-changing discipline and is a space where different issues converge”. She further stated that the book fills a void in our knowledge about acid mine drainage (AMD) and that the publication is “an example of hard work which results in big achievements”.   This publication is the culmination of the findings of the research conducted for Naidoo’s master’s dissertation. The book focuses on assessing the responses of the various development actors involved in addressing the issues of AMD, and its socio-economic and developmental implications. Prof Dirk Kotzé, from the Department of Political Sciences at Unisa and programme director for the event, said that AMD research is generally analysed from highly technical, engineering, and natural science perspectives. He also said that the purpose of the publication was to identify and explain the different conceptual understandings of AMD and its implications. Kotzé acclaimed the publication as being one of the few cases where a social science approach successfully ventures into the domain of the natural sciences.   Naidoo uses sustainable development and, specifically, environmental sustainability as the departure for this research, which is directly linked to water and food security. She said the book concentrates on AMD as “a phenomenon in water management in South Africa and its potential impact on sustainable development, as well as mining and the quality of water in South Africa and the impacts of AMD”.   She emphasised that one of the most important contributions of her research is conceptual in nature and said “the manner in which AMD is defined determines how it is assessed as a water management, environmental, and social problem. It also means that the response to AMD is determined by how it is defined by government”. Naidoo highlighted that, while the South African government has made strong and valuable attempts to address the issues surrounding AMD, the conclusions of her research showed that there was no clear indication in policy as to what the socio-economic impacts caused by AMD are, and how they should be responded to.   Keynote speaker, Mariette Liefferink, CEO of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment, and a leading activist in this field, provided a detailed account of the historic and contemporary context of AMD. She alerted the audience to a significant fact that AMD dates as far back as 1903. She used a more current example to illustrate the impact of AMD on South Africa’s water systems by explaining how the problem of AMD in the West Rand Basin, Gauteng, was left untreated for almost 10 years. She said the immediate short-term treatment of AMD only commenced in 2012 and said that a feasibility study for the long-term treatment of this phenomenon was conducted in 2013 at a cost of R25m. Liefferink said that the long-term treatment plan for AMD was launched on 18 May 2016 but would only be implemented by 2020. She warned that this might have a significant impact on water security. She stressed that academics who employ their research for the benefit of society should be applauded and endorsed Naidoo’s publication as having a definite economic and social value impact.   Zachary Romano, editor at Springer, New York, via a pre-recorded video, said: “Suvania’s research was a perfect candidate for our SpringerBriefs edition, in Earth Sciences, Geography and Environment at Springer Nature. This series is targeted at publishing interdisciplinary case-studies that speaks to larger issues, particularly from young researchers with promising careers. As South Africa’s water systems are under much stress from climate change and pollution already, this is a timely document and we are confident that many academics and professionals will find it to be a great resource”. He also said that the book proposal was reviewed by several leaders in the field, all of whom were impressed by the final product. He further mentioned that the publisher is looking forward to future collaborative work with Naidoo.   The event was extremely well-attended by key stakeholders and experts in this field.

Truth of the dust that brings death

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Harvard Report: The Cost of Gold

A report has been published by the Harvard Law School International Human Rights Clinic titled "The Cost of Gold: Environmental, Health, and Human Rights Consequences of Gold Mining in South Africa’s West and Central Rand.   The reports states, "The complex web of responsible government agencies and repeated legislative changes to that organizational structure have impeded the development of a coordinated plan to deal with the negative effects of mining. The limited scope of action, inadequate attention to at-risk communities, and insufficient consideration of environmental concerns have undermined the completeness of any response."

SA hasn't protected residents from gold mine pollution: Harvard report

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WATER

Rand Water tightens the taps in Gauteng

In the Midvaal suburb where Sipho Mosai lives, the gardens are lush and green because the sprinklers run all day. There's little sense of alarm at the fast-declining water levels in the Vaal water system after which the suburb is named.

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Corruption seeps into South Africa’s R26 billion water project: report

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