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Townships organise private security to do police work

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“We as a community decided to assist police to reduce crime in Musina. We have to take it step by step from one township to another, forming neighbourhood watch groups in each township who will work as security guards,” says Alpheus Mamafa, a community leader.

“Since our own security started patrolling … we have not heard of any burglaries at night and we are very pleased we are getting there,” says Mamafa.

The neighbourhood watch roll-out to a township starts by calling a community meeting where people volunteer to be guards. The community vets the list of names and these are then registered with Mahosi Protection Services.

Many businesses in Musina are using Mahosi Protection Services, named after its proprietor, Mahosi Nelwamondo.

Township residents contribute R150 per month. The guards are paid R2,000 a month. Contributing households are identified with a sticker.

Mahosi neighbourhood watches were introduced to Mushongo-Ville in February and to Nancefield in September. Each township has one vehicle and 14 security guards. Wearing reflector vests, they patrol Monday to Thursday from 10pm till 6am and Friday to Sunday from 11pm to 5am. Each patrol has one armed member.

Sinah Masebe from Mushongo-Ville said: “People in our area were tired of reporting cases to the police, because police could not do much to reduce crime in the area. Now that the guards are patrolling at night, crime has gone down very much. We are happy that these guards are doing a good job.”

She said recently her car battery was stolen. She alerted one of the guards, even though he was not on duty, and within hours she says the suspects were caught and handed over to police.

Delina Mumba, 80, of Nancefield said she misses the good old days when people could sleep outside their houses safely. She sells tomatoes and fruit at a roadside stall. On a good day she might make R250. She contributes to the neighbourhood watch.

Nancy Moyo, a hairdresser, works from home. “Per month on average I get R3,000, but have to pay towards security of this place,” she says. She contributes R50 per month to the patrols, as does her housemate and landlord. This comes to the R150 household payment.

Guards do not attend to houses that do not have a Mahosi sticker.

Musina police station commander Colonel Mmboneni Simon Mukwevho said crime has been reduced by the neighbourhood patrols, but could not give further details.

Source: GroundUp

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N2 Kei Cuttings bus accident leaves 27 dead

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At least 27 people have been killed in a bus accident on the N2 at Kei Cuttings between East London and Butterworth in the Eastern Cape on Monday afternoon.

The death toll has been revised from earlier reports which indicated that 10 people have died.

Eastern Cape transport department spokesperson, Unathi Binqose, says the number of the deaths could increase as more people were still trapped inside the wrecked bus.

A large number of search and rescue personnel, traffic officers, firefighters and paramedics are on the scene.

Binqose said the death toll is likely to increase as search and rescue personnel plan to flip the bus over to see whether more people are trapped underneath.

The accident took place on the notorious section of the N2, known as the Kei Cuttings, north of the Kei River, which is known for its perilous twists and turns.

Binqose said the driver of the bus is among those who died.

The driver is believed to have lost control of the long-distance passenger bus before it plunged 200 metres down a steep embankment.

Read | 13 killed in KZN horror truck and minibus taxi crash

“He lost control just before he could cross the river on the last curve,” said Binqose.

Chief director of clinical support services for the health department, Kidwell Matshotyana, told TellitallSA that 22 people were stable and did not want to go to hospital.

“In terms of the injured people, we have five patients admitted at Frere Hospital and one at Life St Dominic’s Private Hospital [both in East London],” he said.

The department will arrange transport for the 22 people, who don’t want to go to hospital, to the nearest town. They will be given accommodation.

The bus is understood to have been transporting passengers from Cape Town.

Hospitals and emergency services in the area and further afield were offering help with triaging patients.

He said the police had the grim task of going through the luggage to find identity documents, in order to begin informing the next of kin of the tragedy.

The department would also work with the bus company to establish a contact centre for worried families checking up on people who were on the bus, and those details would be announced later.

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Skeem Saam’s Koko Mantsha death dismissed as fake news

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Koko Mantsha, the popular Skeem Saam character acto, real name, Lydia Mokgokoloshi is not dead.

Social media is awash with news of her death which seems to have been fuelled by fake news sites aiming to profit from unsuspecting lovers of the 80 year-old veteran actress.

Lydia Mokgokoloshi, has appeared in many television shows including Muvhango and Bophelo ke semphego.

Mokgokoloshi was born on 27 September 1939, in Polokwane, Polokwane Local Municipality, Capricorn District Municipality, Limpopo.

She is most famous for acting as Koko Mantsha the grandmother of Katlego Pietersen (Patrick Seleka) in the soap, Skeem Saam.

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Watch: Thulani Dlomo an alleged ‘Zuma spy’, hands himself in

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Thulani Dlomo, the axed former SSA top spy and former SA ambassador to Japan has handed himself over to police on Friday.

Dlomo’s lawyer Philani Shangase said that he handed himself over at his own will at the Durban Central Police station on Friday.

He said Dlomo was not arrested but wanted to clear his name following media reports.

Dlomo was being interviewed by police officers at 17h00 on Friday.

“He has denied all wrong doing,” Shangase said.

Dlomo was suspected to be one of the instigators of the unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

This is a developing story.

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