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RHODE S U N I V ER S I T Y INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER
EDITION 4 • 08 MAY 2012 • SINCE 1947
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A C T I V A T E
A threat or a tool?
SA Men’s hockey to go to London
Grahamstown’s fight against TB New Media:
Skype Sexy Time
Edition 3 . 24 April 2012
Press Freedom debate
Page 11: Page 13:
Editor-in-chief: Lauren Kate Rawlins Deputy Editor: Isabelle Anne Abraham Content Editor: Kayla Roux Managing Editor Palesa Mashigo Online Editor: Alexander Venturas Chief Media Supervisor: Megan Ellis Chief Sub-Editor: Matthew Kynaston Chief Designer Simone Loxton Assistant Designer: Mignon van Zyl Chief Pics Editor: Anton Scholtz Assistant Pics Editor: Niamh Walsh-Vorster Illustrator: Katja Schreiber News Editor: Sibulele Mabusela Politics Editor: Marc Davies Business Editor: Njabulo Nkosi C&A Editor: Alexa Sedgwick Features Editor: Karlien van der Wielen Features Assistant Editor: Nina McFall Lifestyle Editor: Sarisha Dhaya A & E Editor: Elna Schütz Sports Editor: Bridgette Hall Science & Tech Editor: Brad de Klerk Environment Editor Shirley Erasmus Advertising Manager Lethukuthula Tembe Advertising Assistants Justine Pearce Adrienne Weidner Advertisement Designer: Alex Bernatzky Distribution Manager: Bulali Dyakopu Community Engagement: Victoria Hlubi Editorial Consultant: Craig Wynn capacity as Editor-in-Chief, apologise to any party that was offended by the article. We were approached by students who had legitimate concerns and felt that these concerns should be aired in the interest of anyone who eats and works in the dining hall. We did not feel that the story was biased against dining halls, as we had quotes from a Senior Caterer and a representative from the Health Care Centre. Upon reflection and careful consideration of the responses, I realise that there were some problematic elements in the story that might have caused offence. Through our mistakes and oversights, however, we learn how to improve our work as student journalists and develop the sensitivity and careful insight necessary to work in this profession. I am happy that these students’ concerns have been brought to light and an investigation into the state of the food in their dining hall is being scheduled. Whether their concerns were based on the truth or not, the food can only get better from here! I hope you all enjoy this online edition of Activate. Editor-in-Chief, Lauren Kate Rawlins Contacts: Editor: activate.editor@gmail. com Deputy Editor: activate.deputy@gmail. com
Bare feet on campus
Lu-Fuki album launch
Green hospital in Khayalitsha
Above: Clifford Bangusha, a gardener in Grahamstown, takes a break from his job and the heat of the afternoon. Bangusha earns R100 a day for this work and only works one day a week. On this salary he does his best to support his two children in high school and his wife who is currently unemployed. In light of Worker’s Day on the 1st of May, it is important that South Africans confront the fact that many of the country’s workers are subject to similar employment practices which can be considered to be unacceptable, even bordering on exploitation. Pic: Anton Scholtz Front page: A sticker showing support of the fight against Tuberculosis is displayed on the glass door which separates one of the wards from the nurses station at Temba TB Hospital in Fingo Village. Temba has played an integral part in the battle against the disease in the Grahamstown area. See page 8 and 9 for a photo feature on the hospital. Pic: Anton Scholtz
n this edition of Activate, we have decided to publish an online version only. There are many reasons for this decision, but let’s just say it is sort of an experiment... Read our Science and Technology section for a look into new media and its uses – whether as a threat to the tradition of print media or a tool to be used by it. Has the rapid growth of the online media reached Grahamstown yet? Are Rhodes students reading online, offline, or at all? I believe that the experience of reading a newspaper can never be replaced. However, there are many positive aspects to bringing our work online. Firstly, our print run is not limited: the paper can be read by anyone anywhere in the world with Internet access. Secondly, we’re saving the trees and reducing paper waste. Look at us, saving the environment! Thirdly, you can choose what stories you want to read, and if it’s not good enough, a better one is just a click away. If nothing in this edition meets your standards, why not tell us so by using your Facebook account to comment on our website? The possibilities are endless. In other news, Activate received some negative feedback about a story entitled ‘Enough to make you sick’, which was published in the last edition. We have published two letters in our letters section on page 5. I would like to, in my
From the Editor
Printed by Paarlcoldset, Port Elizabeth
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
03 News in Brief[s]
Niehaus asks for job back
By Nikho Mageza Carl Niehaus, former ANC spokesperson, is asking for a second chance from the party. According to News24, Niehaus quit his position in February due to allegations of fraud. Accusations pointed to his extravagant lifestyle, his fraudulent doctorate and a fraudulent letter used to obtain loans. Niehaus said he has had time to reflect upon his actions. “I want to be the person who made the decision to join the ANC when I was 19 and stuck with it,” he said in a press conference. “I don’t want to be the person who made wrong decisions.” According to News24, known ANC spin-doctor Brian Sokutu said the party viewed Niehaus’ immediate resignation as an unfortunate event. Sokutu explains that if Niehaus would like his position back, there are structural units within the ANC to which he must first report.
News [in briefs]
Advocate targeted in shooting
By Nikho Mageza According to TimesLive, advocate Glynnis Breytenbach may need police protection after being targeted in a shooting on her way home and a second attack by two motorbikes attempting to throw her off the road in Centurion. Breytenbach is known as a no-nonsense corruption judge and is in the process of investigating the arms deal case, as well as the National Police Crime Intelligence Chief Lieutenant-General Richard Mdluli’s corruption case. If Breytenbach is placed under police surveillance, she will be the second judge who is dealing with the arms deal case to be placed under surveillance. “If it was an attempt to intimidate me, it was not successful,” she said.
Cape Canna Festival kicks off
By Kayla Roux Last weekend saw the birth of the Cape Canna Festival, which was kicked off by about 400 protesters who took part in the Global Marijuana March in Cape Town. The march started outside Cape Tech University and progressed through the city streets with no interference from authorities. They joined forces with over 700 other cities across the world to make their voices heard for the decriminalisation of marijuana. The Global Marijuana March, also known as the Million Marijuana March, started in 1999 by main organisers Dana Beal, a marijuana activist, and magazine Cannabis Culture. “The goals of the protest were to decriminalize spliff, and to not be hassled for our lifestyle choices,” explained James Speirs, a Rhodes graduate who attended the march. “There were lots of cool people,” said Speirs. “There was a nice vibe from the cars that drove past – even a friendly police escort that didn’t harass us, even though people were smoking.”
From doughnuts to desserts
By Sibulele Mabusela and Brenda Sekgota Soon to satisfy the sweet tooth of Rhodes students as well as Grahamstown locals is a dessert parlor scheduled to open right across the Arch on Somerset Street on 19 May. This student-owned project is an extension of what many already know as Freshly Fun Doughnuts, a business that formerly worked on an order-and-delivery basis. Luke Muyambi, who was featured in an earlier edition of Activate for his entrepreneurial skills, started Freshly Fun Doughnuts in his flat when he found a doughnut machine at a discounted price. Muyambi is now branching out and will be trading to the greater public from the building that currently houses driving school Pronto’s offices, and will be renaming his business to Dessert Island. No longer just selling doughnuts, Muyambi will be adding other desserts to his menu and although he will continue to deliver, he admits that those who come to the store will have the pleasure of seeing how the doughnuts are made.
A rebel fighter points his gun at a suspected Gaddafi supporter as other rebels try to protect him, on a road between Benghazi and Ajdabiyah. March 21, 2012. Pic: Reuters
A SPLA-N fighter stands with a mortar shell near Jebel Kwo village in the rebel-held territory of the Nuba Mountains in South Kordofan, Sudan. May 2, 2012. Pic: Reuters
Sana, a five-year-old girl, plays on a cloth sling hanging from a signalling pole as smoke from a garbage dump rises next to a railway track in Mumbai. May 2, 2012. Pic: Reuters
Artist and poet Barry Edgar Pilcher, age 69, is the only inhabitant of the island on which he has lived for the past 20 years. May 1, 2012. Pic: Reuters
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
Idols 2012 wows the crowd
By Yemurai Matibe would imagine that for most aspiring contemporary singers, auditioning for Idols is has been a possibility at some time or another, but imagine if you could sit on the judge’s panel and carry the esteemed mantel, as have some of our favourite musicians? Judging the Founders Hall Idols competition was a perplexing and exhilarating experience, as I was not sure what to expect. As a classically trained singer with some background in contemporary singing, I did not want to appear a “classical” snob to students who had braved the stage. I didn’t want to appear as the ‘Randall’ of the show! Instead, I wanted to be fair and encouraging as I believe that it takes a lot of
courage to stand in front of your peers and sing with conviction. The most gripping aspect of this encounter was the reaction of the audience, who were as captivated as avid fans at a soccer or rugby match: there was shrieking, cheering and screaming in support of the contestants. I felt rather hesitant when I realised that I was the only judge with singing experience, and the thought that the fate of these contestants rested partly in my hands proved to be a sobering experience. Luckily, the other judges made the job less daunting and each brought their own unique perspective to the table. They were deputy Dean of Students Roger Adams, editor of Activate Lauren Rawlins and Binwe Adebayo, the Oppie Press Arts and Entertainment editor.
The competition was a testament to the hidden talent that ican be found amongst us Grahamstonians. The evening was marked with a couple of spirited and moving performances – particularly in the final round. All the contestants must be commended for the commitment and effort that they put in to their performances. With such talent, picking the top five and the winner proved challenging. While the contestants only introduced themselves by their first names, the top 5 made their presence known. Congratulations are due to winner Khanyisa, who gave a heartfelt performance that left many – including myself – completely speechless. Special mention must also be made of the other finalists: Governor, Sikelelwa, Roberto and Carol, who are truly talented
‘Bladerunner’ among 100 most influential people
By: Kendra Dykman
Bloodscan surf contest busts out
By Chelsea Nelson
performers and may just give some of the international Idols winners a run for their money one day! At the end of the concert, I began to ponder what made this experience outstanding to me with regards to the conservative world of classical music I have grown accustomed to. I realised that despite the difference in vocal technique, the success of a singer’s performance lies in their ability to pick the right song and know how to express the meaning of that song to the audience. This experience was indeed a ‘feel-good moment’, and I caught a glimpse of aspiring artists living every singer’s dream - to sing before a huge crowd, basking in the acclamation of loyal spectators. Is there much more that you can ask for?
lade-runner Oscar Pistorius has made TIME’s list of the 100 most influential people in the world. He is the only South African to be on the 2012 list, which features names such as Barack Obama, Lionel Messi, Adele and Wang Yang. Sean Gregory, sports columnist for TIME, said that Pistorius “is the definition of global inspiration”. Pistorius has faced much controversy surrounding his prosthetic carbon fibre running blades, with some believing they give him an unfair advantage. He has had to fight to be able to run in the same competitions as other able-bodied athletes, and he is now allowed to compete in international events. Pistorius is on a quest to compete in the London Olympic Games this July. However, his current competing times are not good enough to see him qualify. In an attempt to be the first amputee competing,
ast month, the 2012 Bloodscan Jeffrey’s Bay Surf Challenge and Industry Cup saw surfers from across the country flock towards the popular holiday destination for what was bound to be a weekend of excitement. With small conditions it was difficult to surf the waves right down the point but younger surfers were at an advantage, able to whip around and manoeuvre themselves slightly easier than the larger, older crowd. Team Lizzard won the Industry Cup division. Their team, comprising Oscar Pistorius ran his way into the TIME’s 2012 list of of Antonio Bortoletto, Casey Grant, most influential people. Pic: Supplied Klee Strachan and Gavin Roberts who together accumulated enough points to earn the trophy. “The Pistorius must run 400 metres in 45.3 seconds. His best location of the event is awesome, time so far is 48.24 seconds. Pistorius says that he is I’ve done a couple contests there as not overjoyed with the result, but says there is time to improve, saying that it is “not a train smash at all”. He has a junior so it was sick to be back. The waves were fun nevermind it until 30 June to meet the qualifying time.
being 1-2 foot the entire event,” said Strachan. “It was glassy every day, which made it cool.” First place in the Industry Cup went to Mikey February, surfing for Team Bloodscan, winning R 15 000. February was also victorious in the u-20 Boys division, adding an extra R7 000 to his winnings and taking home a grand total of R22 000 for a full weekend of work. The Red Bull Air Show - always an exciting event to watch - was dominated by Beyrick De Vries, who took home a cheque worth R 7000. “I think it was a well organised and well supported event with great potential to grow and become an annual fixture,” said Emma Bone, a judge at the event. “Although the waves were tiny, the surfers still went big and fantastic sportsmanship was displayed amongst all the competitors.”
Awkward Turtles claim third RIPL victory
By Craig Dargie his year’s edition of the Rhodes Internal Premier League saw two new cricket teams enter the competition. The Danger Mice and the First Years took the place of the Smuts Sultans and Oppidan team, The Cunning Stunts. Perennial favourites the Belmont Bashers were placed in the same pool as defending champions Awkward Turtles. This time RIPL 4 took place earlier in the year than usual, the first matches played in the final weeks of the first term. After a few mishaps such as failing lights midway through the first innings of the Turtles vs Bashers group encounter, the semi-final fixtures were set. For the first time in tournament history, a day of
20/20 cricket was to take place with the semi-finals and finals taking centre stage on after the other. Even SAB came to the party, setting up a ‘Castle Corner’, providing entertainment for all spectators. The Awkward Turtles finished top of their group, setting up a semi-final encounter against the newly founded Danger Mice. Turtles showed superb nerve to chase down an imposing total of 138 after a slow start. With darkness setting in, the Belmont Bashers set about dismantling their opponents the Pink Platypuses’ bowling attack, setting an imposing total of 168/3. The Platypuses never really got going – only Nick Raw, the fifth batsman, gave them a brief glimmer of hope with some spirited batsmanship in the middle
overs. In the end it was a bridge too far finishing on 110 all out; thus setting up a much anticipated final between perhaps the two strongest sides of the tournament: the Awkward Turtles taking on two times champions the Belmont Bashers. A man-of-the-match innings of 72 by opener Jonty van der Meulen allowed the Turtles to set a competitive total of 157/5 in their allotted overs, beating their opponents. The Bashers set off quickly too, Nicholas Tatham set up a close finish before a match winning spell from Cameron ‘Tug Boat’ Braans got rid of the main man. In the end, the Turtles held their nerve to claim their second trophy in as many seasons by 15 runs, joining the Bashers as the tournament’s most decorated team.
SA men’s hockey secure position in Olympics
By Kendra Dykman he SA men’s hockey team have secured their place in this year’s London Olympics tournament to be held in July. This weekend saw the team play Austria in a semi-final draw of 2-2 on Friday which proved inconsequential as they had already secured their place in the final on Sunday. The South African side went on to battle it out in the final against Japan, winning 2-1 after a tense first half.
Japan and South Africa were competing in the Olympic qualifying tournament held in Kakamigahara, Japan, vying for the last available spot in the Olympics. This was their second meeting of the tournament, with the previous pool match resulting in a tight 3-3 draw. It was a defensive match on the side of the South Africans, with Thornton McDade and Lloyd Norris-Jones doing the team and the country proud as they scored the two goals. The South African team presented a strong side, remaining unbeaten for their six matches of the tournament.
The South African men’s hockey side will go on to compete alongside the South African women’s hockey side in the Olympics later this year. The women qualified for the tournament in February, also beating their hosts, India, with a 3-1 victory. Prior to the game, defender Justin Reid-Ross said of the tournament, “Our sole focus is on banking our spot in the final and once that is achieved we’ll worry about our performance in that final.” Clearly their hard work and consistent strategies paid off, and the team will be participating in the Olympics that will begin in less than 80 days.
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
Cacadu to become Sarah Baartman
By Nikho Mageza
he Cacadu District Municipality will be renamed as Sarah Baartman. According to Grocott’s Mail Cacadu ANC Chairperson Lungile Mxube explained the change is to recognise Sarah Baartman and the Coloured community for their contribution in the struggle. Mxube added that the brutal treatment of Baartman at the hands of colonialists needs to be recognised. The ANC decided the name change in a meeting on 3 May. Another reason for the name change, according to Mxube, is the district’s need for ‘rebranding’. The name Cacadu has not brought the district any economical development, he said, adding that the ANC believes that the name change will inspire the people living there. Although he is not sure how much the name change will cost, Mxube said it will be paid for by government and the ANC.
In response to concerns about the costs of the project and protests that the money should have been spent on healthcare or education, Mxube says the public are always ready to criticise the government, even if it is a development project. He added that while they welcome criticism, it must be constructive in developing their district. NMMU Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Sibongile Muthwa, told Activate that the renaming of streets, towns, villages and cities in SA is an important practice. She believes it should not be used as a punitive measure, but rather as a lever for reconciliation in a way that moves the country from bitterness and exclusion of races to a context of inclusion and choice based on equal opportunity and merit. “We salute the efforts of our former President Mandela, and the rest of human rights activists that made sure that the remains of Sarah Baartman return to our country and to her rightful birthplace,” said Muthwa, “This is a heritage for future generations to treasure.”
In the 19th Century, Sarah Baartman was exhibited as a freak show attraction. Pic: WikiCommons
To the Editor
The following letters were sent to Activate in response to an article in our 24 April 2012 edition, ‘Enough to make you sick’. The article, which investigated complaints of stomach illnesses and unhygienic practices in res dining halls, has elicited responses from both Desmond Tutu Hall and the Rhodes Food Services department. Although the article contained a comment from Kimberley Hall Senior Caterer Mavis Mnyungula and Avril Kivitts, a nurse at the Healthcare Centre, we are publishing these letters here in order to provide other parties with a chance to air their side of the story, which they did not have a chance to do in the article. At the time I received an e-mailed response from Mrs Pillay to the article, the paper was already in the process of being printed. I met with Mrs Pillay on Monday, 23 April to discuss her concerns, but it was too late to change anything in the article. This was relayed to Mrs Pillay as soon as the status of the paper had been verified. Thus, her request had not been ignored, but due to the above-mentioned circumstances her response could not be included in the same edition as the ‘Enough to make you sick’ article. With specific reference to Vimbai Midzi’s letter, I would like to emphasise that a statement by the kitchen staff was sought and printed in the article. It appears in the 6th and 7th paragraphs, and is followed by statements from a Health Care Centre nurse. Our intention was not to insult anyone, but rather to investigate claims often made by students concerning dining hall food. If the entire article is read, it would be apparent to the reader that such claims are often unsupported by fact. This is why we included a statement from the Hall Senior Caterer. This is also why a statement was sought from the Health Care Centre, which clearly elucidates the procedure that must be followed in order to verify cases of food-poisoning. Karlien van der Wielen, Features Editor As the Head of Campus Food Services at Rhodes University, I wish to explain Rhodes Campus Food Services food safety standards in response to the publication of the article entitled “Enough to make you sick” in the latest edition of Activate. Campus Food Services subscribes to the Food Safety–Health Act which explains the requirements for food safety and hygiene standards that has been in effect for a number of years, and is generally well enforced by local health authorities. In addition, the standards followed by Campus Food Services are HACCP compliant. HACCP, or the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point system, is a process control system that identifies where hazards might occur in the food production process and puts into place stringent actions to take to prevent the hazards from occurring. By strictly monitoring and controlling each step of the process, there is less chance for hazards to occur. HACCP is important because it prioritises and controls potential hazards in food production. By controlling major food risks, such as microbiological, chemical and physical contaminants, we can better assure our students that our meals are as safe as good science and technology allows. By reducing foodborne hazards, student health protection is strengthened. Monthly hygiene audits conducted by an external body ‘Industro Clean’ at Rhodes University’s kitchens are based on the outcomes of the National Qualification Frameworks Unit which in turn are formulated through consultation with the Government Health Sector, HACCP and Food Service Industry best practices. The National Qualifications Framework training /audit guidelines for South Africa have to subscribe to Government Health Regulation 918. Our Food Service staff are trained and assessed by Siyaya Skills Institute in Basic HACCP, Food Hygiene and Food Handlers Certification. This response is an attempt to dispel any concerns and to reassure our students of the stringent food safety standards we adhere to rigorously at Rhodes Campus Food Services. The Activate article reflects exuberance and a somewhat sensationalist desire to expose what the authors claim to be a major hygiene compromise in Food Safety standards. The article should have reflected a more balanced view, containing a response from Food Service Management which was in fact requested by myself when contacted by email on Saturday 21 April. It is concerning that this request for time to investigate the allegations and formulate a measured response was ignored by the Activate editorial team. Given the seriousness of the issue, we have requested the University’s Risk Manager to investigate the claims made by the students quoted in the Activate article. Mrs Jay Pillay Head-Campus Food Services Rhodes University To the editor, On behalf of the Desmond Tutu Hall committee, I would like to file a formal complaint with regards to an article that appeared in the Features section of the recent edition of Activate (24 April 2012), entitled “Enough to make you sick”. The article speaks of the state of the dining hall kitchen area in Kimberley West Hall. The allegations are particularly concerning, as the food that is supplied to Kimberley West Hall is effectively the same food that is served to Desmond Tutu Hall and Kimberley East Hall. The crux of my complaint lies in the inappropriate language used to describe the conduct of the Kimberley Kitchen as well as the sources that the article was based on. Firstly, the comments were made by the two first year students who had been serving out their compulsory service orders – their reactions to the kitchen environment could have easily been influenced by their feelings towards having to succumb to punishment, therefore being highly biased. Not only did they comment on the lack of hygiene, but the quality of food, saying, “Two flies flew out of the beef” that was to be served to the students in the dining halls was a highly incongruous assertion. To further reiterate my point, there were no comments from any of the kitchen staff themselves – people whom we have come to have a courteous working relationship with, and whose view of us may change due to the scathing and inflammatory remarks arousing from this article. I wish to bring the attention of the Activate team that the Kimberley Kitchen prepares on “average 2 466 meals in day.” As one of the largest kitchens on campus, this required tremendous commitment, and effort from the kitchen staff to ensure that students’ needs are catered to. They work long hours whilst offering support when we have hall dinners and functions. This article is not just an insult to the catering administration, but to the staff that bend over backwards every day of the week and work tirelessly to ensuring the successful functioning of a large kitchen, and who have not been represented fairly in the article. It is in this light of the irresponsible accusations, we feel strongly that a formal apology should be addressed to the Kimberley Kitchen Staff for the bold and unverified comments that were made in this article. Rhodes University is not just made up of students – it is the basis for the livelihood of so many who keep things running as smoothly as they do, and to insult them is the highest form of ingratitude and we consider it downright disrespectful. Sincerely, Vimbai Midzi Sub-warden: Ellen Kuzwayo Residence
By Marc Davies Ahead of the deluge of posters and promises, sloganeering and fingerpointing that surfaces during South African elections, our nation’s citizens may do well to reflect on former President Thabo Mbeki’s 1996 speech, ‘I am African’, that so poetically defined the disposition of the ANC at the time. Mbeki’s reaffirmation of the word ‘African’ gave birth to the vision of the African Renaissance – a philosophical and political movement for the transformation of Africa and renewed vitality to overcome its ills. This definition should be one that resonates across the plains of our embattled continent, yet in recent years it appears to have been forgotten by many: perhaps by those who buried it when they buried Mbeki in the months before Polokwane. What emanates most strongly from the philosophy is the necessity of strong, moral leadership to drive Africa’s renewal. Universal embodiment of this program by our leaders is necessary for it to work. Current state leadership in South Africa, for the most part, exhibits a critical failure of imagination. Factionalism and distasteful internal battles have marred the vision of renewal for the continent. Additionally, the media’s infatuation with internal spats and particularly the growing impasse between seniors and the ANCYL perhaps worsens the failure of the political imagination and the gradual migration away from progressive discourse by many of our top leaders. Too seldom do the ‘counterrevolutionaries’ critically debate the ANCYL’s ‘radical’ calls for land expropriation without compensation and the other seemingly ‘threatening’ policy change suggestions without honing in on the often hateful insults from the likes of Julius Malema, Sindiso Magaqa and Floyd Shivambu. This attitude towards concerns about gross land and wealth inequalities is also fruitless. The South African leadership vacuum does not, however, remain confined to the likes of Luthuli House. The ‘blue opposition’, from which equally disturbing comments about ‘education refugees’ and ‘professional blacks’ can be heard, is similarly less-than-admirable in its approach to transformation. The DA’s failure to engage critically and vocally on issues such as land reform and nationalisation detract from its service delivery successes. The lack of DA MPs and ward councillors that do not come from the white, middle-class ideology alludes to the party’s inability to grapple with the challenges of a diverse, and mostly poor, South Africa. I argue that it is imperative to give rebirth to the philosophy of the African Renaissance ahead of 2014 and select our leaders more carefully than we have in past. Those who lead us must embody a vision of an Africa that informs its own identity and is strong on its own feet. We must stand in solidarity against those who wish to detract from this vision.
Panel slams upcoming judicial review
governmental body, as opposed to an external, independent body, and whether the judiciary should ipho Pityana warns: be the only branch being singled “Not everything and not out for review as opposed to all everyone who proclaims three branches. transformation advances Smuts added that review and democracy.” The statement debate should be an ongoing was made at a Rhodes panel process, rather than an official discussion on the controversial government procedure promoted matter of South Africa’s in “colourful, glossy publications” upcoming judicial review. (a reference to the ‘discussion The discussion on 24 April DA representative and shadow Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional document’). saw four speakers: Pityana, Development Ms Debbie Schafer from UCT speaks during the Rhodes panel The speakers also suggested Chairperson of the Council discussion on South Africa’s upcoming Judicial review. Pic: Niamh Walsh-Vorster that the review has adopted for the Advancement of the a questionable approach regarding the the legislative, executive and judicial branches of South African Constitution; DA representative Constitutional Court. Kruger says that “limiting state. The “discussion document” provided by the and shadow Deputy Minister of Justice and [the Constitutional Court’s] powers changes Department of Justice about the review, entitled Constitutional Development, Debbie Schafer; the Constitution,” while Pityana says it “might “Transformation of the Judicial System and advocate Izak Smuts; and Rhodes Law lecturer Dr undermine our Constitutional democracy.” the Role of the Judiciary in the Developmental Rosaan Kruger, all of whom vehemently criticised President Zuma’s recent warning to the South African State,” claims that the state should the review. “function as an integrated, singular unit in pursuit Constitutional Court ‘not to overstep its A representative from the Department of Justice of the vision set out in the Constitution,” implying boundaries,’ coupled with his claim that the and Constitutional Development had been set to review seeks not to review the court itself, but a possible shift away from the independent nature attend the discussion to provide an alternative rather “its powers” have purportedly led a wide of the three branches of state. perspective in defence of the review, but failed to base of critics to doubt the motivation behind the According to Kruger, such a shift would arrive. review and fear for the future of our constitution. endanger the system of ‘checks and balances’ The review, set to take place over the next 18 “This is not the democracy for which SA voted currently in place to prevent a potentially months, has been described by government and for which we must do everything in our dangerous dominance of power by one branch. officials as a means by which the judiciary can power to preserve,” said Schafer. To support this point, Smuts quoted the United be transformed to create easier access to justice Commenting on the discussion itself, former Nations’ “Basic Principles on the Independence of for all. For example, this will work through journalist and current Rhodes Politics student the Judiciary” which states that “There shall not re-establishing the position of lower courts as Mathieu Dasnois described the talk as “onebe any inappropriate or unwarranted interference to make them more accessible, decreasing the sided”. “It seemed to me that the focus was on with the judicial process, nor shall judicial infamously long waiting periods for hearings and the potential motives behind the review, and decisions by the courts be subject to revision.” ultimately relieving some of the pressure on the on its timing, rather than the review itself. I was He went on to stress that that a review of South Constitutional Court. interested to hear arguments about reform to Africa’s judicial system should not in itself be However, the review has been widely criticised considered a negative thing, but the circumstances our system of justice itself, but unfortunately as a ploy by government to interfere with the the debate never got there.” Official dates for under which this particular review is taking place judiciary and minimise judicial obstruction or meaningful action as part of the review have have aroused suspicion. resistance to the aims of the executive branch. yet to be released. “Until then,” said Dasnois, Each of the speakers questioned whether it was One of the primary concerns raised by the “speculation and controversy will dominate”. appropriate for the review to be orchestrated by a speakers was the separation of powers; namely By Tegan Phillips
Renewed demands for economic emancipation
By Marc Davies
amongst other historical events, the severe implications of the creation of homelands for black people and development of the migrant peaking at the Rhodes ANCYL lecture labour system on South African society in its on economic freedom, ANCYL SubRegional Chairperson Andile Hayi asserted the present form. Discussing the ANCYL’s call for drastic urgent need for all South Africans to support policy change Jaggarnath said, “We can’t the league’s drive for national economic have policy change for the sake of change, emancipation. we need to consider implementation as well.” Hayi reiterated the ANCYL’s demands of the She suggested that increasing corruption is nationalisation of mines, land expropriation without compensation, free education and equal a potentially major deterrent to the success of the policy. “We need to think about how access to health services amongst other things at the on-campus lecture on Monday, 30 April. nationalisation [of mines] would be structured,” she added. Reflecting on the ongoing deprivation of Reflecting on past and present roles of the millions of South Africans, he said that the youth in challenging the status quo, Politics country does not exist in this system by lecturer Richard Pithouse said that the youth accident but was rather “led into it by a system need to hold their ground, “even when told they of imperialism”. Hayi referred to persisting are being undisciplined”. He added, “No-one inequalities in ownership of land within the has all the answers to this complex issue. South borders of Makana and Cacadu, saying, “Land Africans need to think carefully, which we don’t is not owned by the people of Makana… some of it is owned by people that do not even reside always do.” Presenting an academic perspective on the in South Africa.” issues surrounding economic emancipation, Rhodes History lecturer Vashna Jaggarnath Pithouse criticised liberalism as a widelyrecently presented a chronological account of endorsed ideology that “tries to de-politicise colonial movement in South Africa, stressing the ‘economic’” and has presented poverty in the “key aspects of land and mines” in local history. The infamous Land Act of 1936 is “one Africa as inherent rather than as a result of exploitation. He commended the ANCYL for of the big nails that weakened black people in South Africa…took away their agency in a very “blowing open the liberal consensus” by making serious way,” said Jaggaranath. She emphasised, political the unjust life experiences of many
South Africans. Pithouse also noted some negative aspects of nationalisation. “State ownership does not automatically mean something will meet the needs of society,” he said, using the example of South African Airways as a state-owned company that does not allow for transportation of the majority owing to its competitive prices. However, he said, “Nationalisation can be something that makes a huge advancement to the South African economy.” Pithouse says that nations such as Venezuela and Bolivia have significantly reduced poverty by endorsing nationalisation but adds that the policy has the potential to transfer resources and economic power from one elite to another as opposed to distributing equally. There are many positives and negatives to this debate. Pithouse suggests that in order for such a radical programme that challenges liberalisation to work, people must create “mass democratic organisation from the groundup”, adding that sustained movements, and not simply temporary protests, are necessary to achieve this aim as well as hold the state accountable. The document on nationalisation and other issues raised by the ANCYL is to be discussed at the ANC’s policy conference in June and will be finalised at the party’s highlyanticipated elective conference in Mangaung in December.
8 May 2012
DA, ANC debate press freedom
By Sibulele Mabusela arking the 18th World Press Freedom day ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu and DA Shadow Minister of Communications, Marian Shinn, engaged students, lecturers and members of the public in a lively discussion on matters relating to the regression of media freedom in South Africa, the privatization of the SABC, and South Africa’s low Information Communications Technology (ICT) ratings. Kicking off the discussion, chair of Highway Africa Professor Jane Duncan, put forward the question of what the two parties’ stances were regarding communication policies and to what extent these policies aimed to achieve the media freedom that many regard as being threatened. Duncan mentioned that a number of international institutions such as Freedom House had downgraded the global rating of South African media freedom. Mthembu responded that it was not the ANC’s intention to do away with press freedom. He had said previously that the controversial Protection of Information Bill was originally established because the self-regulatory system the media had in place was not keeping it accountable. This, according to Mthembu, was where disagreements between the ANC and the media originated, which resulted in the ANC bringing about an ultimatum: “We can’t have a body of people that go day-in, day-out going against the holy grail of its constitution.” “Our constitution is clear and is
underpinned in equality, human dignity and freedom,” said Mthembu. “The press cannot be free outside of the constitution, but should rather be a press that finds its freedom within the constitution,” he continued. With the Bill a lingering threat to media freedom and the rejection of government involvement in media proceedings, the Press Freedom Commission reviewed the current self-regulatory stance and introduced recommendations on the independent co-regulation of the press. The recommendations, which ANC Secretary General Gwede Montashe said the ANC was “comfortable” with, have stricter regulations in place and allow for a greater involvement of the public. Explaining the DA’s stance on the privatisation of the SABC, Shinn said the broadcasting commission needed to be broken up and should start developing social content. She added that the ANC needed to let go of “the old stale cake”, referring to print media and Mthembu’s insistence on a larger amount of black ownership and involvement therein. She assured that dynamic journalism was happening in and around South Africa and it was being done by young black people. Shinn believed that if the government put structures in place to address the level of ICT development, black entrepreneurs would naturally rise to the occasion and claim their stake. She further claimed that South Africa had the resources and were just sitting on them: “We should use technology to let go of elements of the past”.
World politics round-up
SARKOZY PLEADS INNOCENCE
FRANCE: Prior to the French national election on May 6th, President Nicolas Sarkozy was called on to “explain himself to the people” by the Socialist opposition. This comes after allegations that the late Libyan leader, Muammar Gadaffi, offered him €50 million for his election campaign. Sarkozy labelled the claim a “disgrace and fabrication” and accused the French left of attempting to create a distraction using the reports. An alleged letter, written in Arabic and dated December 2006, is said to have been issued following a meeting between then-minister for local government Brice Hortefeux and Gaddafi’s spy chief Abdullah Senussi, amongst others. Following Sarkozy’s denial of the allegations, he admitted to considering co-operation with Libya in nuclear energy. However, he had previously denied this as well. Sarkozy was beaten by socialist challenger Francois Hollande yesterday, Monday 6 May.
STUDENT PROTESTORS KILLED
SYRIA: Four students have been killed and some 200 arrested after engaging in anti-regime protests at Aleppo University in Damascus. Government troops and Syrian forces raided the university campus following daily demonstrations against continued violence in the country. Demonstrations in support of the Aleppo students at several other universities ensued following the attack and dispersion of students using tear gas. Violence has continued in the embattled nation despite a UN-backed ceasefire agreement that went into effect on April 12th. The UN has since accused both parties implicated in the Syrian conflict of not abiding by the ceasefire which called for anti-violence, the removal of weaponry from urban areas, media access and an inclusive political process amongst other stipulations. 600 people have died since the ceasefire was put into effect.
BRAZILIAN JOURNALISTS MURDERED
BRAZIL: UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, has condemned the killing of another journalist in Brazil, who is the fourth reporter to be killed there in 2012. Pillay’s spokesperson, Rupert Colville, said Pillay’s office is concerned about the trend of attacks on journalists in Brazil, saying the exercise of freedom of expression is being damaged. Two of the deceased journalists were newspaper editors, one a radio journalist, and the fourth, Decio Sa, was a blog reporter. The police said they would use information from the journalist’s blog in their investigation. Colville called on the Brazilian government to pass a law that would require federal investigations of crime against journalists.
ZANU-PF FACTIONS CRIPPLE PARTY
ZIMBABWE: Factionalism amongst top leaders in Zanu-PF has allegedly seeped into grassroots structures, creating difficulties for 88-yearold Robert Mugabe ahead of the upcoming election campaign. District elections were suspended across five party provinces after allegations of vote rigging and intimidation led to violence. Mugabe has pushed for elections to be held this year; however, infighting has prevented Zanu-PF from developing a new campaign to create voter solidarity. This is seen as necessary, following a decline in voter support which started in 2008. Zanu-PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo said party leaders are to meet to discuss the violence, while other officials say Mugabe’s insistence on hosting elections in 2012 is deepening party divisions. All elections have been suspended while the ruling party investigates the issue.
08 Photo Feature
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
Grahamstown’s fight against tuberculosis
By Anton Scholtz
emba TB Hospital in Fingo Village has been instrumental in the fight against tuberculosis in Grahamstown for over 50 years. From its initial location after WWII, where it was known as the Catherine Webb Municipal TB Hospital (now the Raglan Road Clinic), it has since moved to its current location in “A” Street, Temba, meaning ‘hope’ in isiXhosa, has provided relief to citizens in need. For over 40 years, Temba was managed by the Grahamstown TB Care Society with funding from the SA National TB Association (SANTA). It changed management in 2005, coming under full control of the Eastern Cape Department of Health. In 2003, after an appeal by the Grahamstown TB Society, the
National Lottery Board donated R2 million to the renovation of the hospital. Temba now has 60 in-patient beds for treatment and monitoring, of which about 45 are currently occupied. There is also a special isolation ward for severe cases. The hospital has many out-patients who come to collect medicine from the pharmacy on a weekly basis, which is also open to the rest of the community. With the prevalence of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) steadily on the rise across the world, the implications for South Africa seem dire. “South Africa has some of the highest levels of TB infection in the world and therefore we also have a very high incidence of MDR-TB,” says Dr Marion Ahern, resident doctor at the hospital. “These numbers are steadily climbing and it is a big problem.” Ahern explains
that a large quantity of expensive medicine is needed in order to treat patients effectively for MDR-TB and the length of this treatment is usually a minimum of two years. The cure rate is also much lower for these strains and fatalities are more likely. While Temba Hospital does not offer treatment for MDRTB, it does have several patients who are classified as ‘monoresistants’ – those who are resistant to either of the two firstline anti-TB drugs, isoniazid or rifampicin. Patients with MDRTB in the Eastern Cape are treated at larger TB care facilities in East London or Port Elizabeth. Temba is a place which offers hope to those who may otherwise have had none and ensures that people receive a full and effective course of treatment for tuberculosis. As the prevalence of the disease worsens, it is places like this that will become influential in the struggle against the disease.
 Nonthuthuzelo Dayimani, an enrolled nurse at Temba TB Hospital in Fingo Village, takes a patient's blood pressure during her morning duties in one of the wards. The constant monitoring of patients is essential during TB treatment. Eastern Cape. 26 April 2012.  The ladies in the hospital kitchen serve lunch to the patients through a serving hatch. The patients queue up to collect their plate of food and are given a fully balanced meal comprising of vegetables, meat, starch and fruit. 4 May 2012.  The old chapel in the grounds of Temba TB Hospital. While this chapel is no longer used, there is a weekly church service held for patients in one of the other buildings on the property. 4 May 2012.  Some of the patients chat and watch television in one of the communal lounges between the wards at Temba Hospital. 3 May 2012.  Temba TB Hospital at the edge of Fingo Village has been working to alleviate the burdens of Tuberculosis on the surrounding communities for over 50 years. Grahamstown, 3 May 2012.  Dr Marion Ahern looks over her schedule and checks patient files with some of the nurses. Ahern is the resident doctor at Temba and moved there from the Eastern Cape Department of Health head office in Bhisho two years ago. 3 May 2012. Pic: Anton Scholtz  Patrick Sitheba sits next to his bed in one of the wards at Temba. Sitheba comes from Extension 9 in Joza and has been at Temba for treatment for a month and a half. 3 May 2012. Pics: Anton Scholtz
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
09 Photo Feature
8 May 2012. Edition 4
R7.74 / 1 USD R10,37 / 1 EUR R10.15 / 1 GBP
The African National Congress welcomes the decision of the Department of Transport to delay the implementation of the e-tolling system by a month. This shows leadership and responsiveness on the side of the government.
Spain’s crisis deepens
By Njabulo Nkosi
any are familiar with the rhyme ‘the rain in Spain stays mainly on the plain’. With the financial crisis in Europe getting worse for some countries, the rhyme may just have to change to ‘the pain in Spain’. Local debt in the country is unsustainably high, which means they will have to cut government spending before improvements are likely to be seen. Spain’s ruling party runs the risk of losing some political control, as it will have to greatly decrease impose greater austerity on regional governments, leading many to question whether other parties could do better. Things don’t look too positive for their economic future: the cost of borrowing is rising again, the construction bubble has burst, there is substantial debt that has yet to be settled and
youth unemployment is over 50%. The government expects to have direct financial control of at least one of the nation’s ailing regional governments by the end of May. “It wouldn’t be surprising if this happened in May,” said a high-ranking official according to The Guardian UK. “Some are paying interest rates that are impossible.” Rescue plans are welcomed by international leaders in the face of the massive deterioration of the Spanish economy, as government borrowing costs jumped by over 6% and the rate of 10-year government bonds hit 6.1%, the highest they have been since December. Spain’s Ibex 35 share index fell to 7245, down from February’s 2012 high of 8902. “We’re back in full crisis mode,” says Lyn Graham-Taylor, a Rabobank strategist. “It is looking more and more likely that Spain is going to have some form of a bailout.”
Regions which run health, education and other essential services were largely responsible for Spain’s failure to bring its deficit under control last year, leaving investors and other European countries worried that they had become untameable. Fellow Eurozone countries have told Spain, which is now seen as the greatest threat to the common currency, to slash its deficit from 8.5% to 5.3% this year. Luis de Guindos, the country’s Minister of Finance, says that Spain entered recession in the first quarter of 2012. Many Spanish banks are running out of liquidity and investment experts are questioning the financial leadership of the EU. Some claim EU leaders are letting history repeat itself and are allowing Spain to follow the same road as Greece, Ireland and Portugal. One thing can be counted on: the crisis is getting worse for Spain – and there is no quick solution for problems like these.
Spain’s capital city, Madrid, is expected to be pivoted in relieving the country of it’s financial burdens. Pic: Flickr
Renewable energy’s future in SA
By staff reporter outh Africa is taking its first firm steps towards renewable energy, and billions of rands of investment are being received by the nation. “We have spoken a great deal about using cleaner sources of energy,” said President Jacob Zuma at the COP 17 meeting in December last year. “Today we reaffirm that commitment and determination to move towards a low-carbon economy.” This was recently confirmed by the SA Minister of Energy, Dipuo Peters, when she stated that alternative energy is the route South Africa will be taking. The question is not if but how. This proposition provides opportunities for international companies, and many of whom are interested in capitalising on them. The challenge facing the international companies aiming at capitalising on SA’s green future, is dealing with complicated ownership structures. This is because local-content requirements have resulted in many larger international companies partnering with local companies and communities. Also, the cost of
investing in renewable energy is high and requires a lot of equity. Regardless of this ownership structure complication, many renewable energy companies and projects are already active in South Africa. Some of the active projects in the country are the giant wind turbine project in Darling, Western Cape, a 135MW Cookhouse wind farm being developed by African Clean Energy Developments, the Hopefield wind farm being developed by Umoyo Energy in the Western Cape, the Jeffrey’s Bay wind farm being developed by South African Mainstream Renewable Power and the 100MW concentrated solar plant being developed by the KaXu Solar One Consortium in Pofadder. These projects, among others, contribute to the projected expenditure of R120 billion on establishing renewable energy in SA. Greg Nott, Director of Werksmans Attorneys notes that the current scale of investment is R50 billion. “We are seeing immediate growth in a very short period of time,” says Nott. This level of investment should be beneficial to the rest of the economy in the form of job creation and an improvement of
national welfare. However, maintaining and sustaining this sector presents some challenges. One of these challenges is ensuring that the renewable energy sector is not dealt with in isolation from economic development globally. Many investors are based in the financially struggling European Union, which affects their investment ability, confidence and sustainability. Regulation of the renewable energy sector by the government and developing adequate policy to ensure the industries survival, is another challenge. Although the prospects of the ‘Green Economy’ are promising for national and global improvement of renewable energy and curbing the effects of global warming, major problems in SA cannot be overlooked. “This renewable energy project also confirms our view that we cannot separate climate change responses from our goals of pursuing development and poverty eradication,” notes Zuma. “Pursuing the green economy must be linked to our overall agenda of pursuing employment creating growth, and inclusive growth that improves the lives of our people.”
E-tolling: what’s the big fuss?
By Gaolese Moroeng
he highly controversial e-tolling system is still a very real possibility in Gauteng, despite the High Court’s ruling that it be postponed. Cabinet still has to approve changes to the law which would give SA National Roads Agency Ltd powers of enforcement on the freeway, said Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane. Although e-tolling is not intended to affect the poor, many question how people will afford the hefty fee that will be billed to their account automatically. Citizen boycotts have been planned by COSATU and other organisations, who believe the system is one of extortion and will milk the public. COSATU spokesperson Patrick Craven said that the postponement of the R20-billion e-toll project was “a direct product of the workers’ power and sacrifices”. “We are happy to announce that in our discussions with the ANC,
we agreed that we must postpone the implementation of the e-tolls in Gauteng for a month whilst we work on alternative funding methods,” he went on to say in reference to the success of the meetings. COSATU has called on the government to instate efficient, affordable and safe public transport. The trade union says that tolling forces drivers to pay exorbitant amounts of money to travel Gauteng’s previously free highways. Consumers face sharp price increases as a result of the extra cost of transporting goods to the shops. Although there have been some protests, many Gauteng citizens registered for e-tolling at the last minute. “This is what South Africans do,” wrote Mail & Gaurdian reporter Faranaaz Parker. “We complain and then, at the last minute, we comply.” The South African Treasury has also stepped in to defend the R20 billion project saying that “the project generates benefits to its users, and it follows from ordinary public finance principles”.
There is also some political conflict, as government officials such as Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale have been implicated in the mismanagement of tenders. Moreover, a rift between the ANC and COSATU has developed as a result of the e-tolling issue. “We pay taxes so that government can build and maintain roads, hospitals and schools,” read a COSATU protest statement. “We demand the dismantling of the Gauteng motorway gantries, and the immediate halting, for good, of the Gauteng open tolls.” The facts about e-tolling make for sombre reading. It will cost roughly R550 per month for light vehicles and motorcycles to travel on recently-upgraded highways. Heavy vehicles will get a time-of-day saving of 20%. This does not mean it will be cheap: the initial fee of 50cents/km was reduced to 40c late last year, and again to 30 cents/km. If and when e-tolling is passed by law, the citizens of Gauteng may well protest more vehemently at what many still see as daylight robbery.
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
By Wynona Latham
11 Comment & Analysis
o socks, no shoes, no slippers – just feet in their birthday suits, moving from lecture to lecture. Many barefoot Rhodes students can be found on and around campus: university is, after all, a place of self-expression – or so it would seem. With the relative freedom given to students and the general atmosphere of expanding ideas, it may seem appropriate to contest the social norm of shoes. However, there are still rules and regulations governing dress in res dining halls, and depending on the particular hall, walking barefoot can be a punishable offence. Even outside of the dining hall, bare feet are met with a range of reactions. While some people can be deeply offended or disgusted by the idea of walking barefoot, others see it as a liberating experience. It is not without its benefits as there is evidence to suggest that it can improve posture, lessen the chance of joint injury and stimulate blood flow to the feet. It can also be identified with the ‘hippie’ or ‘bungie’ trend – a counter-culture that values creativity, but is considered dirty or unhygienic by some. Shoes, or the lack thereof, have found their way into many different cultures around the world. This is evident in the Japanese custom of removing shoes when entering a building. The opposite is illustrated by “No shoes, no service” signs that can be found in the USA. There is even a belief amongst Pagans that one can connect with Mother Earth by walking without a barrier between oneself and the earth. Rhodes is considered to be a secular, multi-cultural university, but at what point is there a clash of cultural beliefs? Is walking barefoot in public an acceptable social practice? Activate sought the views of both shod and kaalvoet Rhodents. Ruth Krüger, Rhodes SRC Environmental Councillor I think walking barefoot is about making a statement. I do like walking barefoot because of the freedom it allows, but I also think that we are too distanced from the world and our effect on it. If there is broken glass on the floor, we put on shoes and
Too much to bare
around campus. Campus is very dirty and there are so many things you can step in. It is also not safe to walk barefoot with the number of broken bottles and glass around campus. I think that having dirty feet in formal settings, such as lectures, is just not appropriate. Hannah Kirkaldy, BA 3 I think that whether or not walking barefoot is a good idea really depends on the situation. It can definitely be a bad idea after Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Walking barefoot can also be quite a lot of fun! I occasionally walk around barefoot in summer when it is really hot, although I have to avoid tar. If I’m in a hurry, walking barefoot is actually better. Veronica Moodley, Warden of Courtenay-Latimer Hall and Oriel House I think that walking in bare feet should be contextualised. For students to walk barefoot in public it is acceptable, whereas for learners at schools (more so at our private schools) it is socially unacceptable. However, with learners from poorer backgrounds it will be acceptable, as the assumption could be made that the parents could not afford school shoes. Walking barefoot is an issue of class and status. Inga Sibiya, BJourn 1 Walking around barefoot for me is a lifestyle. This is going to sound extremely pretentious, but it’s all about a connection to the earth for me. If it wasn’t for the social construct of the university we go to, I would be eating with my hands too because I do that at home - much to the dismay of my Westernised parents. So walking around barefoot is an extension of my need to engage with nature; I love nature and so experiencing it with my hands, face, skin and feet is heaven to me. Shoes are also just really constricting and I get rather claustrophobic when my toes can’t breathe. You can only imagine how much I am dreading the coming of the cold days of winter, although rain is the best weather to walk barefoot in.
Bare feet, just an unhygenic hippy trend or lifestyle to those who prefer to feel the earth beneath their feet? Pic: Niamh Walsh-Vorster
we don’t pick up the glass. We protect ourselves and don’t solve the problem. I also think that walking barefoot is a statement against the idea of materialism. People are too focused on the idea that what you have defines who you are. If what you wear isn’t acceptable by this standard, you are looked down on. If you were unable to afford shoes and had to walk barefoot, I think it is unfair to say that you are less of a person. It’s a very elitist tendency. Shadha Omar, LLB 5 and Hall Warden for Adelaide Thambo The idea of walking barefoot bothers me quite a lot. I think that it is very unhygienic to walk barefoot especially if you walk
By Alexa Sedgwick
fter a recent online video depicting the gang rape of a mentally-disabled girl went viral, Archbishop Desmond Tutu wrote that such violence could be curbed if parents taught their children “decent values”. Many psychologists have debated the idea of nature versus nurture: some believe that violent tendencies are purely psychological (i.e. they stem from the individual, and are in their genetic makeup). Others insist that they develop according to the way in which people are raised, how they are treated and what they are exposed to as children. Possible criminal defences have been based on these argument. Some lawyers who represent violent offenders try to prove that some people are predisposed to aggressive behavior because of their genetics, not their choices, and should therefore not be held accountable for their actions. While this theory has largely been discredited, it has been known to successfully reduce some criminal sentences in recent years, especially after an official study in the early 1930s showed that certain gene mutations could cause violent behavior. Others argue that violent tendencies can develop in perfectly ‘normal’ children who witness aggression around them, are exposed to violent video games and cartoons, or are the victims of brutal crimes. So, is it nature or nurture that’s to blame for the violent crime around us in society today? Do individuals become violent because of a built-in biological tendency, or is it a result of what they see and learn as small children? Audrey Zwinavashe, BA Legal Theory 3 I’m 100% in agreement with Tutu’s statement that children who are raised with good values will decrease the chance of a violent society. I do believe that the way in which someone is raised has an effect on how they conduct themselves and the values they have as a person. It’s also got to do with the way that people handle themselves in certain situations and the way that they behave, because from this you can really tell that it’s got a direct link to the way that they were raised. By the time you are plunged into the real world and have to make decisions for yourself, you really need a strong background to enable you to be a positive contributor to society. In a situation like the gang rape video, it’s something that’s really horrible and calls out to parents and guardians. You learn
Children see, children do
how to behave and what to think about things from an early age at home, so that’s where the moral grooming has to start. Werner Bohmke, Psychology lecturer Linking the problem of violent crime simply to a question of personally held values reduces the complexity of our explanations and makes it possible to peg responsibility for crime at the level of the individual actor - more often than not resulting in the pathologising of the perpetrator. This is an oversimplification that ignores the complicated relationships between interpersonal, socio-economic, historical and cultural factors that contribute towards crime in society as much as individually-held values do. It could be expected that if one holds personal values that stress respect for others’ rights and property, as well as the sanctity of life, one would probably be less likely to commit violent crime. If, on the other hand, one held values that glorified violence as an expression of personal agency, or attitudes that expressed a sense of selfish entitlement, together with a sense of impunity, it could be argued that one may be more likely to commit violence. A final aspect to consider is that violent crime is often committed by people acting in groups. In these situations, individual actions may be more closely linked to group behaviours and expectations than to personally held beliefs or values, so that even if one were raised with “good” values, one might still commit crime. All in all, it’s a difficult question to comment on decisively and I’d prefer to stress the complexity of the issue of crime and the multiple and intersecting nature of the ‘causes’ for this social problem. Dr Jamie McGregor, English lecturer Raising children with better values for a less violent society might work, but it might also have the opposite effect. In teaching
my classes how dangerous the Irish Catholicism was that James Joyce, the renowned author of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, grew up with it shows one way of defining what good moral upbringing means for children – and in Joyce’s works it threatens to be the death of the hero’s soul. I’m very wary of people trying to take the moral high ground and say what it is that children need. I’ve always thought of violence as immature, no matter who perpetuates it. So if it’s a child in the playground stealing his friend’s sweets and beating him up, or if it’s a grown man brawling outside a pub, or if it is nations going to war against each other, it’s all pretty childish, isn’t it? Whether that has to do with a faulty upbringing, or too much upbringing, I don’t know. Tristan de Robillard, BJourn 2 There are some serial killers who had perfectly normal childhoods and others with abusive ones. No one can explain it. When people blame what happens during one’s childhood on what one does later in life, it is easy to forget that sometimes it is a single traumatic event which overloads the brain and breaks down an individual. When that happens, you could be capable of anything. Just look at what happens to soldiers during war. Once they witness death in the way that they do, they can kill many more people, because the experience numbs them psychologically. If children are performing violent acts against each other, I think that it is just as important to consider what they live through on a daily basis as adults as it is to consider whether as children they were taught that violence is bad. Even the most stringent of values can’t prepare a person for some experiences. Sometimes it’s just too much. Julia Fish, BJourn 1 I think Tutu’s sentiments are correct. As a nation we not only have vast social-economic inequalities, but globally there tends to be a moral vacuum. In Grahamstown we had a similar incident to the one mentioned by Tutu in The Sunday Times, with the alleged rape of a young girl and her brother – by their teacher, to boot. Morally, and in the spirit of Ubuntu, we need to start caring for each other more. Children need a sense of community and charity in order to grow into people who will run this country with passion and justice. To care more about your education than your pay cheque you can earn after it rather than what go-od you can do with it, is evidence of a corrupt socialization process in my opinion.
Mangaka throw down the gauntlet
By Kerstin Hall hen people who don’t know much about anime overhear conversations about it, nervous whispers and uncomfortable glances abound. “Isn’t anime, you know, like, porn?” one girl whispers as she leans across the table. “It’s an incorrect assumption that a lot of people make,” says Tessa McGraw, the organiser of the 2012 Anime Art Competition. She ponders for a moment before adding: “There was a stigma attached to it in the past. It’s animated, so it gets more attention. People judge it because they perceive it as being more targeted at kids. There’s kids stuff obviously, but it isn’t exclusively for children.” This discussion is happening during an anime drawing class at the Neko Anime Society. This week, members are learning to draw chibi, which are small, cute characters with heads massively out of proportion to the rest of their bodies. There is hot chocolate and music. McGraw is demonstrating the correct proportions for the facial features on a whiteboard. There is no porn in sight. Anime is a Japanese term denoting anything animated, whether it be movies or television series. Anime as it is known today developed in the 1960s and was influenced by the
Two of the artworks that were entered into the 2012 Anime Art Competition by Jeremy Carver (Left) and Anonymous (Right) style of Western animated films such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Bambi, where unrealistic facial proportions prevail. In the 1980s anime and manga – the Japanese equivalent of the graphic novel – began to receive attention outside of Japan. From that point onwards, anime spread across the globe. This term the Neko Anime Society at Rhodes decided to host an Anime Style Drawing Competition. Entrants were given a choice of topic words and had to use any or all of them to come up with an artwork in their chosen medium. The words given were: tea, chair, fire, joy, eggplant. You may be wondering: eggplant? “Kudos to you if you use this,” warned the description on the Facebook page. This comment seems to have acted like a red flag for a bull. Nearly all the entrants picked up on the eggplant theme somewhere in their work, with a lot of artworks having purple and green colour schemes. Some artists, such as Clayton Baxtor and Bill Masuku, took the opportunity to be more direct and included actual aubergines in their works. The styles of the pieces varied widely, but they all clearly
demonstrated facets of the anime style. “Anime covers everything; everything covered in regular television is done in anime,” says Tessa. Someone else in the room shouts, “Except anime makes it awesome!” to noises of general approval and laughter. As with typical Western media, anime is all a question of genre. It is correct to say that some anime shows could be classified as porn – more specifically, anime of a sexual nature. This is commonly referred to as hentai. Let’s not forget, though, that America gave the world a thriving porn industry too. According to The United Families International Blog, Internet-based pornography rakes in $2.84 billion per year, while other sources place this figure as high as $13 billion. In 2002, LA Times Magazine reported that Hollywood produced 11 000 adult movies a year – twenty times the number of mainstream movies. Yet when a Hollywood movie is mentioned, people do not react with suspicion, as they sometimes do when it comes to anime. Many of the entrants into Neko’s competition opted to digitally render their work using tablets. There were also entries that had been handpainted. The judges are keeping quiet about their favourites and the competitors are waiting until 12 May for the winner to be announced.
Clinical trials prove positive
By Kerstin Hall linical trial. The immediate image that jumps to mind is not a positive one. The words summon the idea of trials gone wrong - mutant creatures, the likes of which can only be found in B-rated horror movies. But that’s really just for the movies, right? The reality is that clinical trials are an essential part of the scientific developmental process. After creating a product, it has to be tested. If it did not need to be, the pharmaceutical industry would be flooded with ineffectual, harmful and perhaps even lethal products. The side effects of new products can cause harm, but some are willing to take that chance – primarily because it pays well. Not all clinical trials are dangerous. There are risks (there would be little purpose in the testing if there weren’t), but many trials don’t detrimentally affect the subjects. Such a trial is currently being conducted at Rhodes. The posters asking for volunteers have been a regular sight for years. BRI Blanching, as it is known, is a study that the Biopharmaceutics Research Institute of Rhodes University has undertaken. According to the handbook they send to prospective subjects, they are exploring the effect of two different creams on skin blanching to make “an assessment of their relative clinical efficacies”. Skin blanching is not as ominous as it sounds. It is really just temporarily lightening the skin by causing mild vasoconstriction of the blood vessels. The effect is similar to what happens when you pinch yourself and the skin grows paler for a moment. The study is trying to produce this effect
using what they term “corticosteroid products”. Dr Mike Skinner, who is in charge of the trials, says, “The mechanism behind skin blanching is unknown. The trial is not looking at why it is happening, but the way the corticosteroids work.” For example, in two different products containing the same amount of the corticosteroid chemical, one may have a greater blanching effect than the other. “That is related to the composition of the product and how it penetrates the skin,” Skinner explains. The blanching product under development is hoped to dampen the effects of allergies and some autoimmune conditions. “That’s the ultimate clinical implication,” says Skinner. The trials have been running since February and will continue until June. There are four different groups of trials, with a single one taking six weeks to complete as different products are tested. Skinner adds that the only connecting feature between the volunteers is their desire for monetary reimbursement. “We have a full range of people, guys and girls. They are just people who need the money.” These volunteers spend a weekend at the BRI clinic, which is located above the Catering Department next to the African Media Matrix. The volunteers have the corticosteroid products applied to demarcated areas on their forearms and then are free to go about their business at the clinic, provided they don’t wash, exercise, swim or sunbathe. It is a good opportunity to study and students are advised to bring books and notes with them. Their arms are checked for changes on a regular basis. The volunteers are provided with meals and refreshments and access to ablution facilities and a kitchen. And at the end of the process, they are paid R950. Not bad for
a weekend of doing practically nothing. In the handbook, it is also indicated that the trial is approved by “an independent ethics committee and the Medicines Control Council of South Africa”. Additionally, the study adheres to the International Good Clinical Practice Guidelines. As trials go, this one appears to be exceptionally safe and carefully managed. Chelsea Nelson, a past trial participant, says that while the trial may not have been “fun”, she was glad she did it. “It’s definitely worthwhile,” she says. Nelson spent Friday evening until Sunday afternoon at the clinic and while she says she suffered from ‘cabin fever’, her overall experience was positive. “Don’t spread the word too much; this is my only job. I think a lot of people are too scared to do clinical trials in case they end up with some weird deformity, but this trial is pretty mellow compared to some of the ones they do overseas.” After all, the polka dot effect on your arms is said to fade after 24 to 36 hours. After that, you are just left with a lighter study load and a lot more money.
Edition 4. 8 May 2012
7pm on 10, 11 & 12 May Rhodes Drama Department Building, R25 (Students)
Lu-Fuki’s fresh stench
ROAR: DJs@Play & Richard the Third
7pm, 11May The Union, Members R15, non-members R20
ROAR: Graeme Watkins Project
7pm, 18 May The Union, Members R20, non-members R25
Grahamstown alternative funk band Lu-Fuki recently celebrated the release of their debut album at SlipStream. Pic: Daniel Hollick By Campbell Easton to be the origin of the term ‘funk’. ‘Funk’ means a thick, pervasive smell which overwhelms one’s senses. “That’s what we do,” jokes band frontman Sandi Dlangala. “Just try to stink up everyone’s ears!” Sandi, a third-year Drama and Instrumental Music Studies student, had his doubts about the group at first. “When they offered me the job, I had never been in a band before. I wanted to become an actor,” he explains. But after only one rehearsal, he changed his mind. “We just connected. We all flow so well together.” Luke Clayton believes that this connection is vital to the band’s performance. “We’re all on the same page musically, so there’s nobody holding us back,” he says. “We all have the same tastes, so we all still have our musical integrity. You have to make music that you’re happy with, you know?” Formed in May last year, Lu-Fuki had been together for little more than a month when they won the Live Music Society competition Battle of the Bands, beating some of Grahamstown’s top student bands. The short time in which the band has achieved this success is astonishing, but the group is not prepared to slow down just yet. “We’ve done quite well for ourselves so far, but we do want to go way, way further,” says bassist Vee Lourenço. Like many other musicians, the members of LuFuki dream of playing internationally, but know how much hard work that will require. “It’s a hard market to break into,” says Vee. “But we need to make it in South Africa first.” Having played shows all through Grahamstown last year, the band has begun taking their music nationwide. They have just performed a show in Cape Town and are already preparing for their July tour, which will take them to Johannesburg, Durban and East London. “This year is all about expanding the Lu-Fuki brand,” says drummer and part-time manager Steve Haiden. “We are focusing heavily on using social networking to spread our name around.” Lu-Fuki has not yet signed with a record label or manager. The album Bad Body Odour is not available in music stores, but is for sale from the band itself for only R50. They can be contacted on their website www.lu-fuki.com. Their songs are also available on YouTube and Soundcloud.
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u-Fuki is on its way to making it big. The up-and-coming Grahamstown alternative funk band celebrated the launch of its first album last week. Composed of several Rhodes students and one graduate, Lu-Fuki has achieved a loyal following in the last year. Described as being “very energetic, very bouncy” and even “a world-class act” by fans, Lu-Fuki has spent a painstaking six months recording what they hope to be the first of many albums. Titled Bad Body Odour, the CD contains an eclectic mixture of funk and alternative rock not often seen in music today. The album was recorded almost entirely at the house of guitarist and producer Luke Clayton. “We were influenced by bands like Red Hot Chili Peppers and Rage Against the Machine,” says Clayton. “But there’s a lot of reggae in my guitar playing. Our vocalist even brings in some Kings of Leon.” The album features seven songs, including local hits Fly Away, 7 Car Pile-Up, and Goodbye. The name ‘Lu-Fuki’ is derived from a Kikongo word meaning ‘bad body odour’, believed by some
Sci-fi at its endearing worst
By Gemma Barkhuizen Title: The Darkest Hour Director: Chris Gorak Cast: Emile Hirsh, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghello Running time: 1 hour 29 minutes Rating: Perfect viewing for when you are feeling talentless and consequently depressed – watching this film will prove to you that your lack of talent is shared by many, including most of the people involved in making this movie. we’re-total-strangers scenario amongst four young adults who are faced with the invasion of man-eating aliens in Moscow. The movie is definitely entertaining, but not for the reasons intended. There are a number of inexplicable and incoherent scenes which were supposed to be poignant, but ended up either stereotypical or just bewildering. Because this film incorporates intricacy of neither plot nor character, one can assume that the beauty is meant to lie in its special effects. For comedic reasons, it certainly does. There are classic techniques, such as the bullets-firedin-slow-motion effect and the use of handheld-cameras to enhance panic, which make films great and leave us with timeless images of heroism and wonder. In this movie, they make me think that Chris Gorak paid far too much attention in film school and is now too scared to divert from cinematic clichés. Because of The Darkest Hour’s shoddy execution and equally bad acting, it is nearly impossible for viewers to care about the
here is one thing that every low budget film needs to round it off: an alien invasion. The Darkest Hour provides lucky audiences with just that, in a hilariously typical sci-fi fashion. Questionable acting is paired with cheesy dialogue, and the cinematography is as poor as the special effects. The plot is a classic it-is-the-apocalypse-so-let’s-fall-in-love-even-though-
Emile Hirsch stars in a new action sci-fi, The Darkest Hour, about five young people that lead the charge against an alien race who have attacked Earth. Pic: Supplied fates of the characters. This makes the fact that the end of the film resolves or explains almost nothing slightly less annoying. It also makes me scared that Gorak may want to make a sequel!
8 May 2012 . Edition 4
Getting sexy on Skype
By Sarisha Dhaya
t is about that time of the year: your friends are breaking up with their hometown sweethearts and cursing Taylor Swift’s love ballads, and are now out on the prowl. Long-distance relationships can be challenging, but if you want to keep your soulmate in your life without things getting lukewarm and boring, you might want to familiarise yourself with technology like Skype – and I’m talking about getting extremely familiar…
Miss. Sexilicious69696969* says: I was seeing this guy who lived in Cape Town. We spoke all the time but obviously couldn’t see each other. So we would Skype one another and as our relationship progressed, so did the sexual tension. My personal take is: I think that for any person who is a bit kinky and adventurous and in a long-distance relationship, it’s a great idea. You cannot necessarily make up for physical experiences with the other person, but the mind is incredibly influential in the bedroom. So there is definitely pleasure involved for the both of you – visually and verbally – much like phone sex, sexting or sending your partner some steamy photos. This is just a more intimate version of that. People should do it because: There is not much involved past having an Internet connection and Skype on your PC. Also, you can be as kinky and steamy or as tame and PG as you and your partner are comfortable with. There are number of things you can do over Skype to keep the person on the other side turned on and thinking of you. I think it’s easy to say that guys are always being sexual, but I think women have the same sexual desires and are just less brash about it. So you can model a sexy outfit, pose
provocatively or watch as things get more intimate. I say be as imaginative and experimental as you want. The dangers: Well, there have been horror stories about people being taped or photographed without their knowledge, and it landing up somewhere dodgy. So there is that aspect, but my hope is that you’re in a relationship with a person whom you trust enough to not do that. It’s something for both of you and if you’re comfortable enough to be intimate in person, then the trust exists over Skype. If not, then ditch that dude fast if he wants the world to see things you only do for him. My embarrassing story: Basically, I was Skype-sexing this guy, and there was a bit of a risk because I was in res and he had roommates. So we weren’t speaking, just watching each other. As things got more heated and intense there was a knock at my door, and, well, you can’t really interrupt things like that. After a few more knocks, I regained some composure and answered by popping my head round the door as I was only wearing a pair of stilettos. My sub-warden, after hearing more than she needed to, just said, “Uh, you dropped your car keys…” That still makes me cringe and giggle at the same time.
Mr. Hotinthecot007 says: I was in a relationship for approximately two and a half years. The distance between us wasn’t great, and often it wasn’t possible to be together due to transport and things like that. My personal take is: I don’t see anything wrong with it. Everyone is going to have their own rules and ways of doing things in relationships, and if being intimate or showing it by using technology works for a couple, great! People should do it because: It can be a great way to ‘connect’ with that special someone. It provides a thrill and triggers a sense of closeness, despite not physically being together. Not much is involved: just Skype, a whole bunch of nudity and whatever floats your boat. It’s about how comfortable you are with yourself and your partner. I wouldn’t recommend doing anything
you’re not completely okay with, but at the same time you can be a little experimental. It is safe, if the necessary precautions are taken, like locking your door. The dangers: The main danger about having ‘sex’ through Skype or video chat is that once something is in black and white it can be very hard to erase. So, if your partner takes a screenshot of you, it can be used against you and could lead to some rather traumatic and unpleasant demons that could pop out of the closet a few years later. My embarrassing story: The oddest experience for me was catching my partner off guard picking their nose. But apart from that, nothing too horrible has happened. One would hope that you know a person well enough that for an experience to be classified as ‘odd’, it would have to be rather intense!
Shopping in Hong Kong
By Kendra Dykman
Lamma Island harbour, Hong Kong. Pic: Kendra Dykman
ong Kong, a place where East meets West and where you can experience China without the language barrier standing in your way. Most people in this part of China are able to speak English because it was under British administration until 1997. Western tourists continue to flock to Hong Kong, where the locals are very accommodating. The region, particularly the less tame Lamma Island, has a similar climate and vegetation to Durban: humid and green. On the downside, your shoes may go mouldy in the cupboard. Even if you’re not a born shopper, you are bound
to find something you have always wanted and needed in Hong Kong. It does have a reputation for being the shopper’s paradise, after all. The city has numerous markets taking up entire streets and little back alleys with shops that sell everything you could possibly think of, from clothes and shoes, to fancy dress costumes and wigs, to Angry Birds Uno and remote-controlled helicopters and even kinky men’s underwear. All this, with countless different iPhone and iPad covers - you could says it’s a shopaholic heaven. The scenery, too, is beautiful: there are mini temples alongside some of the highest buildings in the world, and they have just about every mode of transport. It is definitely a place worth going to.
Redefining VW: a review
By Ruan Scheepers
hat defines a truly great car? This question has been asked and answered by many wise men and women who have gone before me. I’m not completely sold on the argument that a well-built, well-performing car simply defines greatness in the automotive world. Immediately, I’m confronted by those wise ones who all point to the BMW M5, the clear-cut example of a great car: it is built amazingly, it performs like a dream, and it is as perfectly balanced as the books of the midlife-crisis accountants buying them. When VW South Africa finally axed the Citi Golf in 2010 after 25 years, it was given a nationwide memorial service worthy of Caesar himself. The Citi Golf was never a particularly good car. It was a small box that picked up a few bright colours and quirky engines along the way but still handled like a wounded badger
without power steering. The Polo Vivo, on the other hand, is South Africa’s bestselling car. It’s based on the previous generation Polo and has a reliable, very economical 1.4l engine and doesn’t behave like a small aggressive animal. Optimists may call this progress. It may well be, but progress towards what? Technological advancement on this level is synonymous with boredom. The Vivo is soulless. It’s not particularly stylish, fast or thrilling in any way. Yet, the sales figures suggest that this should theoretically be a great car. At this point I will recognise the needs of normal humans. You may have your Vivo because it won’t kill all the polar bears, it won’t break down, and it will shift you from A to B safely and comfortably. However, for the rest of us, bring back the adventure! Bring back the thrill! Lighten up our dreary grey driveways with an Alfa Romeo that bursts into flames every now and again if you must! At least liven things up for those who feel
The new Polo Vivo GT. Pic: Auto Motor Und Sport
that cars are more than just transport machines. Admittedly, I must add that VW has tried to liven things up by sticking a GT badge on the grill in front of a bigger 1.6 engine and painting a few of the plastic bits silver. Born is the Polo Vivo GT. Sounds promising? But when it comes to VW, what is a ‘GT’ without the ‘i’ on the end?
Edition 4. 8 May 2012
Aquarius You are a great friend, and if people had to pick one star sign as a best buddy, it would always be you. You’re so creative that it’s scary – people sometimes hide but your imagination paired with your science brain will sniff them out and then fill your pockets one day. Maybe you’ll even meet someone who wants you as a lover and not just a friend. Pisces You’re a hopeless romantic to the end. You love being in love and all you want is world peace. You are delusional, little fish, but you’re happy that way. If a sandwich proposed to you, you’d smile and keep it forever – all you want is a silly fairy-tale. Aries You are such a wonderful leader that even the lions at hunting time want you to lead them to their next meal. People idolise your leadership skills with awe and amazement. They worship you – this is what you wanted to hear. You always hear, read and believe you are the best no matter what anyone else says. Aw, and you will be, especially as you’re a mommy’s dearest and she loves you and tells you how wonderful you are everyday. Taurus You’re skilled with drinking, hunting and cheese-tasting. You find hobbies very pleasurable and you pick up skills that make you perfect marriage material. It’s really a pity no one’s really looking for a marriage partner at Rhodes. Gemini You can have a threesome with a clean conscience: after all, there are always two of you. You’re adventurous, and you love exploring Grahamstown on Sunday mornings at 2am to look for any jewellery that could have been lost at Grey Dam. Cancer You’re dependable and like stability, staying in and tidiness. You are perfect for Bobby the Bookworm, but not so much for Peggy the Partier. But a partier could never make you happy – they’re too liberal for your liking. You like being conservative – conservative is sexy, because it’s clean. Leo You could woo a baby cheetah away from its meal and into your arms. You have such wooing powers that any person would love you: it’s your expensive gifts, your generosity and your ability to sing in the shower that gets us going. We just want to wrap you up forever and take you home to meet the parents – you’re so perfect! Virgo You make love to a person’s mind, you’re so clever. The first thought that comes to mind when your partner sees you after a long time apart is whether or not you can figure out how to work the new blender they bought. Being smart helps get things done and get household appliances working, and your mom and gran are your biggest fans because you helped them learn how to work ‘the Google’.
By Sarisha Dhaya
At your best horoscopes
Libra You are simply charming, but the worst driver out of all the star signs. Let’s hope you can charm your way out of traffic fines this month. Mr Libra is all about style and the posh lifestyle: you look like a movie star, and you believe you truly are one with your amazing hair – horse shampoo really does give it a nice glow. The truth is you can’t afford to live the façade – secretly you munch on dog food and use perfume from magazine freebees. Scorpio You’re great in bed and have a penetrating stare that makes anyone melt and their knees go weak… Or, it makes them think you’re a creepy paedophile.
Sagittarius You are just amazing with teacups and saucers: if you could be reborn you’d want to be the Mad Hatter from Alice and Wonderland – because you love making tea for friends and dressing up is all you’re really good at. Get out that moth-eaten second-hand clothing and experiment with all bargain bin make-up like crazy. Capricorn You’re so hard-working and organised that you were what Dr Seuss envisioned when he created ‘Thing 1’ and ‘Thing 2’. Your hairstyles are really wacky, and whoever bags you one day is going to be the luckiest gold-digger ever born.
By Sarisha Dhaya Clothe me Coachella The Indo Valley is a desert 125 miles east of LA, and home to the indie music movement, where people parade in sunkissed, flower-child style. Team Zoe provides some style tips to coach you in Coachella style: think hippie chic-meaning daisy belted jerseys, chartreuse-accented sandals, and floral print shorts. The perfect outfit? “A tie-dye tank, denim shorts and a bucket bag,” says Team Zoe. Hunger Cover The release of The Hunger Games has fashionistas channeling their inner tough girl. Think fierce and rich shades of tobacco and black. Give boots a try – Mr. Price has a stylish black lace-up boot for R189, 99. Pull out your gladiator sandals, heels, combat pants… Anything that looks fierce and fearless! Experiment with some studs and Revlon ColourStay 16-hour eye shadow for some serious impact. Titanic Tease Lovey-dovey passion, death and open seas are whisking the fashion world away on a fantasy! Try a unique, decadently deep blue pendant necklace, classic looks, lace and other feminine fabrics – or even something that hints at a mysterious underwater persona! If you go for the classic ladylike look, try teal or black lace boyleg and bra sets, paired with a round neck and over-the-knee navy dresses with a waist belt. The sea seductress should try silver jewellery and clothes that feature exotic fabric and chiffon sequins that will let you shimmer and shine like a deep water pearl. Free Fashion Freedom day fashion is something fun and funky that incorporates all the colours of our rainbow flag in a couple of trendy looks. Try colour denims from Edgars in chilli pepper red for R279, 95, or look for coloured knits and jackets. You could always celebrate our wildlife with leopard print leggings or tribal print tops. Fairy-tale fashion Got some fairy-tale princess syndrome in anticipation of Snow White and the Huntsman? Every girl can feel like a princess in pretty ballerina pumps in shades of magenta, velvet blue and metallic from R79, 99 at Mr. Price. Soft, fluttering fabrics are great for princesses, while metallic and sequin dresses are perfect for the girl who wants to be queen. Who thought royal fashion could be affordable? Runaway lips Pouts from the runways of London, Paris and Milan and New York have come to the Rhodent runway. Think bright red lips and vampire-dark lips in shades of plum. Try Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick by Kate in 04 for R69,95. Keep in mind that statement lips work best when the rest of your face is kept neutral.
Colour denims are fashionable amongst both men and women this winter. If you are feeling brave, go check out Mr Price or Jay Jay’s and choose your colour. Pic: Sourced
The tie-dye top is very popular on campus and is inspired by the Coachella style from Los Angeles. Pic: Sourced
16 Science & Technology
8 May 2012 . Edition 4
A threat or a tool?
By Megan Ellis Old versus new. Tradition versus modernity. Familiarity versus change. It seems to be part of human nature to fear the unknown and try to protect established norms, and this is no different in the world of the media. New media is gaining a greater foothold in the public sphere, with traditional media institutions often attempting to keep the ‘natural order’. This is no different from when radio was introduced and threatened print, and when television threatened both. New media, however, is often seen as a threat to all traditional forms as it is able to encompass the features of each. The introduction of the Internet has completely changed the game. Old marketing strategies are crumbling, with many newspapers going out of business because people simply do not want to pay for news when there is such a wide variety of it available for free on the web. In South Africa, our slow Internet development has protected traditional media from the extent of failure seen in the US and other countries with a wellestablished Internet presence. However, the Internet is growing in South Africa, and more people are gaining access to it as prices drop. Increasingly, traditional media institutions are faced with the question: “What do we do now?” Sensationalism – which sells – is one of the worse answers to this question as more and more publications turn into tabloids. Websites are set up because publications feel they need to, instead of wanting to. These sites aren’t utilised to their full potential and are instead used to shovel outdated content online. This has raised debate amongst media practitioners, who say that media workers should stop asking how to save newspapers and start deciding how to save journalism – in whatever form. This calls for new media not being seen as an enemy, but rather an ally in the restoration of journalism’s best practice. Journalism is a public service: one which supports the development and sustainability of democracy and does so in as many ways as possible to reach as many people as possible. New media is not an enemy to journalism, but rather a tool which democratises it – bringing news and information to anyone able to access it for free. While our print edition is able to reach those who aren’t able to access the Internet, our site gives news updates and stories between printed editions to people across the country and world. New media brings a new opportunity to producers of journalism, as we are able to source and disseminate information globally and without the costs. Instead of resorting to sensationalism to ensure the media’s continuity, journalists and media workers should strive to use it to reach new audiences in new places in new ways, every day.
Telkom CoE celebrates 15 years
By Brad de Klerk
he Telkom Centre of Excellence (CoE) at Rhodes’ Department of Computer Science celebrated 15 years since its establishment on Wednesday, 25 April. The centre hosted an afternoon of practical research as well as a gala dinner to celebrate its success. Since 1997, the Computer Science department at Rhodes University has hosted one of the 16 Telkom CoEs nationwide, with the Rhodes centre placing a special focus on distributed multimedia. Telkom’s CoE programme was established in collaboration with telecommunications industry Telkom and the government to promote a culture
of excellence in research in information and communication technology. The centres also aim to provide facilities to encourage young scientists and engineers to pursue their interests in South Africa. In addition to developing skills in science, engineering and technology, the centres are aimed at creating partnerships between historically disadvantaged and advantaged institutions. These institutions are paired through sharing a CoE in which they jointly focus on a specific aspect of telecommunications research. This provides for the transfer of skills and the upliftment of the previously disadvantaged institution. The Rhodes centre is a culmination of the
research expertise within the department, contributions from other departments at Rhodes and other tertiary institutions (both nationally and internationally), and input from industry partners. The Centre is a prime example of triple helix at work: where academia, industry and government come together to pool resources and improve the competiveness of the industry. This is done through the preparation of highly skilled practitioners and the co-development of appropriate technology. Some other universities that host CoEs include: University of Fort Hare, University of Cape Town, Stellenbosch University and University of KwaZulu-Natal.
Two new Air India 787 Dreamliner aircrafts are seen at the Boeing production facilities in North Charleston, South Carolina. April 27, 2012. Pic: Paul J. Richards — Getty Images
Diabetes remission found after weight-loss surgery
By Megan Ellis
study has found that a particular weight loss surgery, laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (LSG), can help obese patients by alleviating type 2 diabetes and its complications. The study compared the results of the LSG operation with other weightloss therapies such as consultations with healthcare professionals, weight-loss medication, lifestyle changes, exercise and dieting. Out of the 60 participants who were all heavily obese and had developed this type of diabetes, 30 underwent the operation while the other half used other weight loss solutions. The operation involves removing a major part of the stomach, leaving only a Nearly two years after the infamous BP oil spill, Al Jazeera reports that fishers and scientists are finding strange deformities in sea creatures in the Gulf. Shrimp without eyes, fish with tumours and sores, and crabs without claws or hard shells are among the many mutations. Scientists have blamed the oil spill and the chemicals used in the cleanup as the cause for the deformities. According to The Daily Galaxy, the European Space Agency (ESA) plans to launch a mission to search for life on Jupiter’s moons. The Jupiter Icy Moon Explorer (JUICE) will be launched in 2022, and is expected to arrive at its destination by 2030. The explorer will spend three years making detailed observations of the planet’s Galilean moons.
small pouch which fills up quickly. This results in patients eating far less and therefore shedding weight rapidly. The study found that, along with weight loss, there was a decrease in BMI and triglycerides (fat found in blood which can contribute to heart disease), as well as an increase in HDL cholesterol – the ‘good’ kind. This discovery is of particular importance, with type 2 diabetes making headlines due to its increasing prevalence. A rise in children who have it has been seen in many countries struggling with obesity rates. According to UK News, diabetes will account for 17% of the British National Health Service’s costs by 2035. Some have speculated that this rise may bankrupt the health scheme unless diabetes is seriously decreased in coming years. A study has found that religious websites contain more viruses and malware than pornography sites. Symantec, the largest producer of security software in the world, found in its Internet Security Threat Report that sites with religious or ideological themes had three times the number of security threats than adult sites. Symantec has suggested that these sites are kept malware-free to ensure returning customers. Plans have been announced for Durban to become the first African city to use sea currents to generate electricity. The project will be a joint effort between US energy firm Alternative Energy, SA’s Occtur Ocean Energy and the eThekwini municipality. The project will be completely funded by the profits made from selling the electricity, which will give taxpayers a break.
By Megan Ellis
Edition 4 . 8 May 2012
Rooibos threatened by climate
By Gorata Chengeta ecent reports show that rooibos is a species under threat. The fragile ecosystem in which it grows could be destroyed by global warming, and the fact that rooibos only grows in the Cape Floristic Region has caused ripples of panic around South Africa. One farmer was quoted as saying he had noticed unusual weather patterns and suggested that increases in temperature and a lack of rainfall would result in the endangerment and possible extinction of the rooibos plant. According to Gerda de Wet, Communications Officer for Rooibos Ltd, the problem was “not as bad as it has been made out to be”. De Wet acknowledged that global warming was being considered as a danger, but there was no need for the anxiety. “We know we should be careful about it, but we don’t want to worry the consumer.” De Wet said that typically, rooibos is grown for two years and then harvested and so far, the company has adequate supplies.
Climate change poses threat to South Africans’ beloved Rooibos tea. Pic: Flickr
Richard Bowsher, a farmer and owner of a private rooibos farm in the Northern Cederberg area, also dispelled the claims. “I haven’t seen any evidence of this at my farm,” he said. “We are seeing consistent cycles where we’ll have a couple of dry years, and then wet cycles.” Bowsher added that rooibos farming could actually pose a threat to biodiversity. He explained that farming rooibos, which happens on vast areas of land, reduces biodiversity because the plant is a monoculture. This means that there are no other plants grown in the same area, which can be very damaging to an ecosystem. However, Bowsher remains optimistic about the future of rooibos farming. Organisations such as the South African Rooibos Council have developed guidelines to promote sustainable practices in rooibos farming. If government can successfully implement such standards, farmers will be able meet the high demand for rooibos, and at the same time conserve the biodiversity in the Western Cape area.
Through nature’s lens
By Shirley Erasmus his month marks the 8th year of the annual Reel Earth Film Festival. The event is the leading film festival in the southern hemisphere, and has a strong emphasis on nature and the environment. Hosted exclusively in New Zealand, the festival offers filmmakers, scientists and environmentalists from across the globe an opportunity to enter films, documentaries, animations, ‘mockumentaries’ or allegories into the line-up. An interesting element is being added this year: the EF Factor – a short film competition for local youth. A total of 56 films will be shown in New Zealand cinemas
from 11 until 19 May, finally drawing the festival to an end with the Reel Big Night Out, an awards ceremony where the best of the films will be recognised and honoured. “The environment is everyone’s concern – and environmental issues are both broad and mainstream,” says festival director Dorothee Pinfold. Films to be featured include People of a Feather, Your Environmental Road Trip, Raising Resistance and The Clean Bin Project. However, the festival’s carbon neutrality and the environmental friendliness of the event itself is something that has gone largely unnoticed. The festival could have a much larger impact on the social conscience if its own carbon footprint was addressed.
New Zealand is not alone in honouring high-quality films and documentaries of an environmental nature this month. RU Green and the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) will also be holding a film festival, here in Grahamstown. The first film, From Pole to Pole was screened in Eden Grove Blue on Thursday 4 May, after which WESSA speakers held a discussion. According to Alex Lenferna, chairperson of the South East African Climate Consortium Student Forum, RU Green intends to screen a film every week and resume screenings again next term. This offers an opportunity to learn about the environment and gain a better understanding of the planet on which we live.
Green hospital demonstrates new frontiers
By Jane Berg
new hospital with the capacity to hold 240 beds has been completed in Khayelitsha, Cape Town. It was officially opened by Premier Helen Zille and the National Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, on 17 April. Its designers, ACG Architects & Development Planners, took considerable steps in making the new building an environmentallyfriendly one that worked in harmony with its surroundings. These measures include low-energy lighting, water recycling, natural ventilation, and a renewable energy system. The result: a level three carbon footprint accreditation. The Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) stated in a recent newsletter that “worldwide, buildings are responsible for a third of all carbon emissions. Given that SA has boldly committed to reducing our carbon emissions by 34% by 2020 and 42% by 2025, it is especially significant that our
government is demonstrating its commitment in this manner.” Nikki Köhly, Rhodes’ Safety, Health & Environmental Officer, says, “The benefits are so numerous that it would be foolish not to embrace green building initiatives. Think of the cost associated with water saving [and] energy saving.” However, the extra expense involved in using green building strategies can be very large, especially at a local level. “A lot of project managers and building contractors err on the side of conservatism, using old technology and ideas,” adds Köhly. “The pity is that they don’t consider the long term benefit.” She also notes, however, that many Grahamstown residents and environmental groups have submitted a proposal to the municipality concerning using a greener building ethic, because it could save on both water and electricity with a rates rebate on water tanks, solar panels and plumbing in homes. This would help
The new green hopspital recently completed in Kyahalitsha, Western Cape. Pic: Sourced reduce the municipality’s financial burden in the long term, as well as add a real practical component to the Makana Green City Initiative. Perhaps once the long term benefits of building designs such as those used in Khayelitsha begin to show, it will only be a matter of time before urban planners start to think of the shift towards sustainability as inevitable. “As with all new ideas, the early adopters may have to ‘fight for it’ to some extent,” concludes Köhly. “But it is inevitable in the sense that those aspects that are worthwhile will stick, and eventually become standard practice.”
On the ball
By Bridgette Hall Today I am writing not only as a sports supporter, but more specifically as a female sports supporter. This is a distinction I wish I didn’t have to make. I constantly find myself having to prove my sporting knowledge when I am with my male counterparts. Why is the role of women in sport so distinctly marginalised? I can name a number of men who play both provincial and national sports, but women? None. They do not receive nearly the same coverage or admiration, and let’s face it – the ladies of Banyana Banyana are the ones with achievements to write home about. My frustration with the sidelined role of women in sport goes further than just the fact that women receive barely any recognition and the fact that money prizes in competitions are almost never equal. This is something we should applaud the tennis world for making an effort to change: in 2007, Wimbledon joined the US Open and the Australian Open in paying equal money across the board. Last year, SuperSport held a competition to find a female rugby presenter. At first glance, this looks great – but what do these women do besides read tweets? Why don’t we see female analysts in studio, on panel discussions and in the commentator’s booth? Are they somehow less knowledgeable? I doubt that. Also, why don’t we see female referees/umpires in men’s fixtures? Sian Massey is the best example of how well this could work: she is a respected, professional referee in English football, who works at the highest levels of the game. And yet, during a game in 2011 where she was one of the match officials, Andy Gray, a football television presenter, had the audacity to say, “What do women know about the off-side rule?” This is exactly the kind of attitude that makes being a women’s sports fan so infuriating. In the end, Gray lost his job, and Massey is still refereeing today. As soon as I walk into a pub it’s assumed I’m there to watch hot players on the field, or worse still, just to be around the guys watching. A round of beer and some sports gossip later, I have (sort of ) convinced them that I actually care about football. And while it is going to take a lot of work to find equality in the professional sporting world, I hope that for now men can at least try to offer the same acknowledgement and respect to all female sporting fans as they would any male.
The weekend saw the return of Inter-res sports with teams from across campus competing in Dodgeball on Saturday, 5 May 2012, and a 2km row, sixlength swimming race, and a 3km run on Sunday. Pic: Matthew Hirsch
The road to Wembley
By Tommie Gilbert and despite worries of it being a slip-up, Liverpool dominated and won 6-1, he FA cup is one thanks, in part, to a pair of of the oldest cup own goals from Brighton. competitions in the In the quarter-finals, Stoke world. Saturday saw two City fell to Luis Suárez and of England’s giants clash Stewart Downing in a game at Wembley as both clubs that ended 2-1. The semis saw tried to end their rather them pitted against the blue inconsistent seasons by half of Merseyside and despite adding some silverware to going down 1-0, they pulled their cabinets. back to win 2-1 with goals Chelsea’s season has had coming from Suárez and Andy its ups and downs. It started Chelsea Football club celebrates winning the FA cup at Wembley on Saturday. Their Carroll’s ponytail. with the promise of an Fourth FA cup in six years. Pic: Supplied Saturday’s Final however, André Villas-Boas reign, but did not turn out to be the game many thought it that quickly faded as Chelsea stumbled and their with a brace. The semi’s saw them playing at might be. The first half was a rather dull affair, Wembley (where the final was played) against season seemed to be heading nowhere. AVB got which was surprising given the rivalry between city rivals Tottenham in what was meant to be the sack and the reigns were handed to former the two teams over the past decade. Ramires a close battle. However, Chelsea overran their Blues great Roberto Di Matteo. neighbours, winning 5-1 in a highly entertaining scored the only goal of the half - but the second This proved to be the boost their season half was entirely different. Drogba scored yet match. needed, as they stormed their way to the finals another goal at Wembley to give Chelsea a 2-0 Liverpool’s season has been something of a of both the FA Cup and Champions League. lead. This prompted Kenny Dalglish to bring on disappointment, with their league form hugely In the FA Cup, Round 3 saw Chelsea host Andy Carroll, who lit up the game with a goal underwhelming. In Cup Football, however, they Portsmouth and they duly dispatched them 4-0 with 25 minutes to play. However, Liverpool have been stellar. They have already lifted the before tackling QPR at Loftus Road in a tightlycould not find a second goal, despite a header Carling Cup at Wembley, and they needed no contested game, where Juan Mata’s penalty was from Carroll being blocked on the line. Chelsea replays on their ride to the FA Cup Final. In the the difference between the two sides. third round they faced Oldham at Anfield, where won the FA Cup for the fourth time in six years Round 5 against Birmingham forced a replay and will now set their sights on the Champions they produced a flattering 5-1 win. In Round 4 (the game that cost AVB his job), where Chelsea League final against Bayern Munich on 19 May. won 2-0 – and then the floodgates opened. In the they faced arch-rivals Manchester United, and For Liverpool, it is back to the drawing board as quarter-finals Chelsea demolished Leicester City after trading goals in the first half, it was Dirk Kuyt’s strike in the 88th minute which separated they prepare to mount a much better challenge 5-2, with Gary Cahill getting his first goal for for the league title next season. the two sides. Round 5 saw them face Brighton the club and Torres ending his 24-game drought
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