Friday, 29 July 2011

Message from Mobilitate Founder

As you know it is tough for citizens to influence municipalities, government and politics. Noam Chomsky put it this way:
"To some degree it matters who's in office, but it matters more how much pressure they're under from the public"

That is Mobilitate's purpose, the reason why we created this platform for all South African citizens.

There is now a comprehensive set of functionality in Mobilitate to enable citizens to communicate, collaborate and pressure those in power to deliver on their promises and duties. How can we help to Mobilise Jeffrey’s Bay? How can we help to bring about the following:

Every citizen or household in each of these four wards:


joins Mobilitate and joins their wards. They now get updates on blog posts on these wards, event notitfications and information on what is going on in their wards.

They see their municipal page at to get a view of municipal service delivery and news/events regarding their municipality.
As they submit issues, their councillors will automatically receive an email for every issue logged in their ward, every comment made on their ward page etc.

Thus we jointly pressure the councillors to join Mobilitate so as to respond to citizens.
As we achieve that, we create a Mobilised Jeffrey’s Bay community that can communicate, collaborate and jointly pressure for a better Jeffrey’s Bay for all its people.

Can we help to organize and fund awareness campaigns? Can we work with the local paper to enable this?
Would you be interested in working with us to bring this about?

Thank you for your feedback and keep Mobilising!

Lionel Bisschoff

Mobile: +27 83 585 6050
Office: +27 12 991 0269

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Why are South Africans so jealous?

Contributed by John Oram

The topic of Julius Malema riches gets everyone’s knickers in a twist – but why? Surely, if you too could live the lifestyle he leads, you wouldn’t want an experience from the South African Revenue Service (SARS) that is likely to feel like an anal-probe delivered by an epileptic monkey?

So what if Julius owns houses worth over R4.6 million. So what if there is a huge Malema trust fund (used for charitable purposes only).  So what if his watch is valued at R250,000. So what if Mr Malema has some swanky luxury cars.  And so what if he can amass all this by shrewdly using his salary of R25,000 per month? Instead of proclaiming him to be a financial genius,  South African haters mock the poor man.

Could it be that South Africans are fuming with envy at his success?  One thing is for sure, after Mr Malema walks away from the SARS audit squeaky clean (if there will actually be an audit) – South African financial advisors are going to be under serious pressure to up their game.  The public will expect them to deliver the kinds of returns Mr Malema has achieved with his capital.  Fund managers across the country are reported to be sweating Red Bull.

Further,  I am pleased to report that this issue has gone international.  Barack Obama and economists from all over the world,  including those pondering the outcome of the US national debt crisis,  are also keeping a keen eye on the situation.  Mostly, Mr Obama is wondering if Mr Malema will share his financial leverage secrets so that he may rescue America’s fiscal deficit using his presidential salary.

Come on Julius, please spread the love!

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Speaker se besittings opgeveil

Huishoudelike besittings van me Magdalena Dlomo, speaker van die Kouga-munisipaliteit, word eersdaags op ‘n geregtelike veiling in Humansdorp van die hand gesit.

Dit spruit ‘n eis van ene me Henriette van Niekerk.

‘n Advertensie in dié verband het Vrydag, 22 Julie 2011, op bladsy 13 in Die Burger verskyn. Daarin word vermeld dat die veiling ter uitvoering van ‘n vonnis gehou word. Dit word op 5 Augustus 2011 by die Baljukantoor, Bureaustraat 16, Humansdorp gehou.

Geen besonderhede oor die eiser of die aard van die vonnis word gegee nie. Die saaknommer is 410/11 in die landdroshof in Humansdorp. Die advertensie is geplaas deur Spangenberg-prokureurs. Interessant genoeg is die advertensie een-en-‘n-half groter as ander soorgelyke advertensies op dieselfde bladsy.

Volgens die advertensie sal die volgende opgeveil word: 6-sitplek-sitkamerstel; 2 TV-eenhede; ‘n platskerm-TV; (nog ‘n) TV; Sony-stelsel plus DVD; koffietafel, yskas; mikrogolfoond; wasmasjien; kroegstoele; eetkamertafel; DSTV; spieëltafel; kopplank; verwarmer; hoekkas; stofsuier; randsnyer en twee bedkaste.

• Volgens die Staatskoerant (nr. 33867) van Desember 2010 verdien die speaker van ‘n graad 4-munisipaliteit, soos Kouga, R363 053 per jaar plus ‘n vervoertoelaag van R121 018 per jaar. In totaal is dit R484 071 per jaar of R40 339 per maand.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

State of Emergency = State of ill Repair

Contributed by a resident who prefers to remain anonymous.

How long are residents going to accept the present standard of our town that looks and smells like a sewerage farm?Wavecrest has sewerage water running and standing in potholes in just about every street. There are sewerage tanks over flowing and running into Noorsekloof and on down to the beaches.

We are getting dirty drinking water that stains washing and destroys it at the same time . We have water restrictions with an average of 88.8% full dams. Is it because the price of water was increased when the restrictions were put in place to discourage residents from using water and will the price be reduced if the restrictions are lifted?

There are major potholes in just about every street.  Some are being repaired with red top soil and some with poor quality cement, and are not even given time to dry or gain strength . Potholes are being repaired in Da Gama road and sidewalks are being cleaned so that the visitors to the Surfing Competition thinks all is nice and well in Jeffreys Bay but the internals shows a different picture of our failing services.

There are street lights that have been burning since the power outage and no effort to have the day/night switches repaired. What a waste of taxpayer's money!

There is a saying if you want a reaction, apply heat.  I think a lot of heat is required very quickly as rigor mortis has already started in Jeffreys Bay. It is up to us the residents to do something now!


Monday, 18 July 2011

Standard Operating Procedure for Noise Nuisances

This article is extracted from the RAC Website (Jukskei Park & surrounding suburbs) in Johannesburg. Although aimed at Gauteng residents, it provides some useful guidelines for how to deal with noise nuisances in a municipal environment.
Not all noise disturbances can be measured in accordance with the stipulations of SANS 10103 and SANS 10328 and are therefore then addressed in terms of Regulation 9 of the Noise Control Regulation of Gauteng 1999

Regulation 9 of the Noise Control Regulations of Gauteng 1999 (Provincial Gazette, Extraordinary no 75 of August 1999) defines a noise nuisance as any sound which disturbs or impairs or may disturb or impair the convenience or peace of any person.

The person, whose convenience or peace is disturbed or impaired by any noise, is therefore entitled to lodge a complaint with this Department.

The official of the Department investigating the complaint does not evaluate the noise or take sound level measurements (Objective Assessment) in the case of noise nuisances (sound that cannot be measured in accordance with the stipulations of SANS 10103 and SANS 10328) but issue a statutory notice on the person causing the noise nuisance, or allow it to be caused, on strength of the information provided by the complainant/s, in his/her official complaint supported by sworn statements, only. (Subjective Assessment)

The complainant/s will be notified in writing that a notice had been served and the complainant shall diarise and keep evidence, if and when the noise nuisance reoccurs.

If the person on whom the Statutory Notice has been served, does not comply with the instructions set out in the notice and the noise nuisance continues, the investigating official must take the matter up with the Control State Prosecutor in order for a J175 (Notice to Appear in Court) to be issued.  The only information the Control State Prosecutor will have to evaluate whether the State will be able to successfully bring the matter to it’s conclusion in Court, will be the statement of the Complainant that initiated the matter and support statements of subsequent reoccurrences after the Statutory Notice had been served.

Although the Statutory Notice served on the person causing the noise nuisance or allowing it to be caused, is strongly worded and have, in most cases, the desired effect to resolve the matter, it remains the first step in instituting legal action. The complainant must therefore be prepared, once the process is set in motion by the issuing of the Statutory Notice, to avail him/herself as State Witness as he/she will be subpoenaed as such.  In fact the complainant will be the only person that can prove the case in front of the magistrate.  The investigating official handling (investigating) the complaint will be only part of the system to bring the parties, complainant and accused, in front of the Magistrate. (Subjective assessment) The Magistrate, as presiding officer, will asses whether the sound emanating from the alleged transgressor’s premises constitutes a noise nuisance or not, on strength of evidence presented to him during the hearing. The case of the complainant presented by the State by the Prosecutor, using the information from the statement of the complainant, and the counter arguments of the accused represented by his/her legal counsel will therefore apply.

Seeing that the Court Roll is congested, the Control State Prosecutor is obliged to only issue J175 Notices to Appear in Court and place cases on the Court Roll that have a reasonable chance for successful prosecution.

Audio visual material (videos) will be accepted as court evidence if it can be authenticated and submitted with the initial statement, as well as with the statements of recurrences of the Noise Nuisance after the Statutory Notice was served.  This will greatly enhance the case and in some cases the Control State Prosecutor will insist on it, as in cases of dogs barking, prior to issuing J175 Notices to Appear in Court.

It must be emphasised that if, for some reason or another, the case is lost in Court and the accused is acquitted, he/she will assume that he/she was in the right and can continue causing the noise nuisance, which will not necessarily be the case, but it will be extremely difficult to bring the same matter to court again.

Note that transgressions of the stipulations of this legislation is a criminal offence and the accused can be fined up to R20 000 or imprisoned for up to 2 years, or both, if found guilty or admit guilt and will then have a criminal record.

It is therefore critical for the complainant to keep all the above in mind prior the lodging of a complaint and in compiling his/her statement. The investigating official and the State Prosecutor will assist during the Court proceedings, but to have the matter placed on the Court Roll, bring it to a successful conclusion in Court, have the accused found guilty, sentenced and resolve the noise nuisance in this manner, are largely dependent on the complainant him/herself.

Therefore, if a person wishes to lodge a complaint with this Department with regard to a noise nuisance, it should be in writing and preferably in the form of a statement which must include:

1.      Complainants full names and surname.

2.      ID number

3.      Physical address

4.      The exact nature and extent of the complaint with times and dates

5.      How the noise negatively impacts on his/her convenience and/or peace

6.      The exact physical address of the property from where the noise originates from

7.      The contact details of the person causing the noise nuisance or allow it to be caused if possible.  (This assists to expedite matters)

8.      History of the noise nuisance as well as evidence of efforts to resolve the matter prior to lodging the complaint with the Council.

Bringing the matter to Court must be the last resort.

9.      As much evidence and collaboration of other affected parties, if any.

10.     The complainant must sign and affirm the statement in front of an authorized person, whom must certify that the deponent acknowledges the content of the statement to be accurate and the truth and considers the prescribed oath or affirmation binding to his/her conscience.

Danie Geldenhuys
Environmental Health (Pollution Control)
City of Johannesburg (Region A)
Telephone: (011) 237 8036
Facsimile: (011) 237 1716
Cell: 083 467 6627

Going bananas about radiation

This little factoid might drive some people "bananas" when they read it. But, it illustrates a fact of life: radiation is everywhere. 
banana equivalent dose is a concept occasionally used by nuclear powerproponents[1][2] to place in scale the dangers of radiation by comparing exposures to the radiation generated by a common banana.
        Many foods are naturally radioactive, and bananas are particularly so, due to the radioactive potassium-40 they contain. The banana equivalent dose is the radiation exposure received by eating a single banana. Radiation leaks from nuclear plants are often measured in extraordinarily small units (the picocurie, a millionth of a millionth of a curie, is typical). By comparing the exposure from these events to a banana equivalent dose, a more intuitive assessment of the actual risk can sometimes be obtained. 
        The average radiologic profile of bananas is 3520 picocuries per kg, or roughly 520 picocuries per 150g banana.[3] The equivalent dose for 365 bananas (one per day for a year) is 3.6 millirems (36 μSv).
Bananas are radioactive enough to regularly cause false alarms on radiation sensors used to detect possible illegal smuggling of nuclear material at US ports.[4] 
        Another way to consider the concept is by comparing the risk from radiation-induced cancer to that from cancer from other sources. For instance, a radiation exposure of 10 mrems (10,000,000,000 picorems) increases your risk of death by about one in one million-the same risk as eating 40 tablespoons of peanut butter, or of smoking 1.4 cigarettes.[5] 
        After the Three Mile Island nuclear accident, the NRC detected radioactive iodine in localmilk at levels of 20 picocuries/liter,[6] a dose much less than one would receive from ingesting a single banana. Thus a 12 fl oz glass of the slightly radioactive milk would have about 1/75th BED (banana equivalent dose). 
        Nearly all foods are slightly radioactive. All food sources combined expose a person to around 40 millirems per year on average, or more than 10% of the total dose from all natural and man-made sources.[7]
Some other foods that have above-average levels are potatoeskidney beansnuts, andsunflower seeds.[8] Among the most naturally radioactive food known are brazil nuts, with activity levels that can exceed 12,000 picocuries per kg.[9][10]
        It has been suggested[11] that since the body homeostatically regulates the amount of potassium it contains, bananas do not cause a higher dose. However, the body takes time to remove excess potassium, time during which a dose is accumulating. In fact, the biological half-life of potassium is longer than it is for tritium,[12][13] a radioactive material sometimes leaked or intentionally vented in small quantities by nuclear plants. Also, bananas cause radiation exposure even when not ingested; for instance, standing next to a crate of bananas causes a measurable dose. Finally, the banana equivalent dose concept is about the prevalence of radiation sources in our food and environment, not about bananas specifically. Some foods (brazil nuts for example) are radioactive because of radium or other isotopes that the body does not keep under homeostatic regulation.[14]

2.      ^ Weston, Luke. (2007-07-25) banana dose « Physical Retrieved on 2010-10-19.
3.      ^ CRC Handbook on Radiation Measurement and Protection, Vol 1 p. 620 Table A.3.7.12, CRC Press, 1978
4.      ^ Issue Brief: Radiological and Nuclear Detection Devices. Retrieved on 2010-10-19.
5.      ^ Radiation and Retrieved on 2010-10-19.
7.      ^ Radiation. Risks and Realities, US Environmental Protection Agency
8.     ^ [1][dead link]
9.      ^ Brazil Nuts. Retrieved on 2010-10-19.
10.  ^ Natural Retrieved on 2010-10-19.
12.  ^ Rahola, T; Suomela, M (1975). "On biological half-life of potassium in man". Annals of clinical research 7 (2): 62-5. PMID 1181976.
14.  ^ Brazil Nuts. Retrieved on 2010-10-19.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Christian Civic Responsibility

This is the text of a sermon given by Dave Webster at the Jeffreys Bay Bible Church on Sunday 10th July 2011.
Text: 1 Peter 2: 11-17
Intro:    In the last two weeks of June I was involved in 4 meetings, meetings which have left me challenged and determined to do something. 
The first meeting, on the 15th June was the J/Bay Residents/Ratepayers Assoc. meeting – Trevor Watkins (the chairman) and others informed us (approx 80 people) of the sad condition of our town and Municipality and they then went on to ask us “what are we doing about it, besides complaining?”
The next day I phoned Trevor and thanked him for his informative and challenging address.  We arranged to get together and have coffee, which we did on the 20th June and I learned more about our Municipality – and again left challenged to the core.
The third meeting, 22nd June in Humansdorp, was as a result of a public invite to listen to and interact with the Mayor and the ANC councilors, who make up the Mayoral Committee – these are the seven people who run the Kouga district – this invite to the public was made 24 hours before the meeting – and there were no more than 30 of us from the entire Kouga area.  After the late arrival of the Mayor, on the day, and the “ear tickling”, promise politicking of some of the Councilors, and taking the opportunity of saying something myself, I/we all left disillusioned.
The  fourth meeting on the 30th June, an invite from the Chairman of the JBay Res Assoc, a meeting at which 6 of us were asked to be part of a new group called “The JBay Res/Rate Payers Legal Watchdog.”  The function of this “Watchdog” group is to fact find (which means reading the 5 Municipal Acts some 336 pages) and then see where the law is being broken; address one on one with the Mayor and or Councilor; then use public media; and finally take legal action, if necessary.
Now beloved, I was/am left in limbo – this is not my thing, my calling, my passion, not even my real interest.  What do I do?  What would you do or more correctly ‘What should we all be doing?” 

Topic:  The Christian and Civic Duty/Responsibility
Let me start with sharing a few Random thoughts/questions: (Think and respond with a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ or ‘I don’t Know’)
·                     Since, as Christians, we’re “in the world but not of the world” are we therefore to be pacifists, to sit back and do nothing (involving "the world") until the Lord Jesus returns?  After all, mankind messes it up and Jesus returns to fix it up.
·                     Are we to be “so heavenly minded that we’re of no earthly good?”
·                     Are we to allow and say and do nothing about injustice, crime, the murder of unborn babies, unbiblical sexual/marital unions, corruption etc etc?  If you say “No, we must do something” then let me ask “What/How?”
·                     What about paying rates and taxes, from our hard earned God-enabled money, money we know is being mismanaged, used for personal gain by corrupt means, etc.  Where does responsible and good stewardship come into the equation?  Or are we to knowingly dish it out and say, “They’ll give account, not me”
·                     What about taking/holding office in public/political parties?  What about Kenneth Meshoe and the ACDP?  What do say about Joseph in the OT, he ran the economy of Egypt for Pharaoh.  What about Daniel who was made ruler and chief administrator over all of Babylon, second only to Nebuchadnezzar.  What about you/anyone of us?
·                     Does the view of separation between State and the Church mean that neither one, in any way, is to get involved with the other?  Therefore:
·                     Was the RCC and to a degree the Protestant Church biblically correct in not getting politically involved, or even speaking out, against anti-Semitism, Hitler murdering 6 million Jews? 
·                     Just how far are we to get involved?  Is voting for political parties every few years and individuals OK, but no further?
·                     Where do we draw the line/lines with community/party politics/social, civic responsibility?
NB. I think we’re beginning to pick up how either naive or deceived, or possibly even brainwashed, many of us really were and/or still are.  No offence!
A few profound quotes from the Enlightened:
·                     "Evangelicals will inevitably disagree about policy, but we realize that we have many callings and commitments in common: commitments to the protection and well-being of families and children, of the poor, the sick, the disabled, and the unborn, of the persecuted and oppressed, and of the rest of the created order." (If you want a few Scripts that teach the truth of this quote, then start at Gen 1:26 which declares man's God-given dominion over all creation; go through to the Lord's prayer “Thy will be done on earth as it is done in heaven”, and through the rest of the Bible!)
·                     "As Christian citizens, we believe it is our calling to help government live up to its divine mandate to render justice." As we consider this profound quote, let's look at the last question of the many  referred to earlier (“Where do we draw the line/lines with community/party politics/social, civic responsibility?”).
 The answer?  Understand we live in a Democracy, which basically means “the rule of/by/for the people” – that’s every one us who make up the RSA.  We have the second best form of rule in the world, the best being a Theocracy “the rule of God” that’s when the Lord Jesus returns.  We’re not under Communism or a Dictatorship, but a Democratically governed country.  Therefore the people appoint national and local authorities and ensure that they “live up to the divine mandate” – and if they don’t then using our “Constitutional democratic right” we respectfully counsel them, then if needs be admonish them, and then if necessary legally remove them.  And it’s with this understanding we apply (Rom 13:1-7; 1 Peter 2: 11-17).  
"The fulcrum on which South Africa’s future will pivot is our Constitution. It is a carefully balanced document that represents an historic compromise between all the significant sectors of our society. It makes provision for a fully democratic society; it is based on the rule of law; it protects the fundamental rights of all our citizens; it entrenches our language and cultural rights; it envisages a society based on equality and human dignity. It is a transformative document that rightly rejects the status quo. If we can maintain this excellent Constitution I am confident that our future will be secure."

The final profound quote, in the light of all that’s been said so far, is this:
·                     “Beloved if we don’t who will? And if not now, then when?”  And the passage that immediately comes to mind is the one our pastor preached from a            couple of weeks ago Mtt 5: 13-16 (read).  We are "the salt and the light ... the world needs to see our good works and come and glorify our Father in heaven!"
In our remaining minutes please turn with me to 1 Peter 2:11-17 (read again).
The last verse (v17) lays out four commands for Christians who daily face the tension of living in this world whilst citizens of another, it says we're "pilgrims" (v11).
As “bond servants of God” v16, here are the Apostle's commands:

1 ) "Honor all men." Treat all men alike, for all have been made in the image of God.  Let’s stop stereo-typing those different from us- be it colour/language/political persuasion! (Testimony: Pam & I - SASSA South African Social Security Agency).  In the words of C. S. Lewis. "We are all kings and queens under wraps." Our language/colour/where we live, doesn't show who God sees us to be.  All equally in need physically, emotionally, and most important spiritually!

2) "Love the brotherhood." Love each other, all of God's people (the redeemed),  with "agape" love (a sacrificial love!), and keep on doing that to all, not just people who are like us and in agreement with us, but all! – the good, the bad, and the ugly.

3) "Fear God." Which means being filled with awe, in light of the fact that all authority is from God, given to--kings and Presidents, and Mayoral committees, etc.--therefore  as His "bond servants"  we will/we must be busy  fulfilling our resposibilities doing good works, “Faith without works is a dead faith” (James 2: 14-26); and “whatever you do do it all to the glory of God.”  Why?  Because we know He is in Sovereign control!
4) "Honour the king." Know that all of our leaders have been placed in leadership by God – understand God’s perfect will, which is a Theocracy and understand His permissive will, in which/through which He is ultimately fulfilling His sovereign plan, even using dictatorships or corrupt democracies. Although voting and involvement may seem like a waste of time, it's our privilege and right and responsibility to partake in a Democratic society, knowing that ultimately God is going to set up His Theocracy.

Although the king may be a tyrant or the democracy be corrupt, God has appointed them as His servant for a reason/season. We must rest in that.  Right through the OT God raises Nations and Kings to deal with His people Israel.  For us, the redeemed, the best is yet to come!
Close with a Challenge:
We, as enlightened “born again” Christians, "servants of God" are surrounded by opportunities for "good works" to fulfill our civic responsibilities – the Ratepayers/Residents Association; Neighborhood Watches; the Community/Police Forum; the Joshua Project; the Business Training ministry headed by Willie and Leon; the Kouga Business Forum,  and many other opportunities, whatever they may be. Let us pray that we will have eyes to see them, hands that will want to participate in them, and feet that will be willing to walk in them.
In this way, Christians can reflect the life of Christ to a fallen world until He comes again! "Even so Lord, come quickly!"
Now if you're here this morning and not yet a "born again" Bible believing person, having acknowledged your sinfulness and need of forgiveness, then I must lovingly warn you that no matter how much good you do/how involved you are with whatever social good it is, without Christ as your Saviour and Lord -- all the good you do will not gain you entrance into Heaven.  Today is the day of salvation, acknowledge you're a sinner, having broken the Law/s of God, ask forgiveness and by faith receive Christ into your live.  Amen.