October 17 2012
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I’m Samantha Moolman.
The Engineering Council of South Africa’s probe into On-Point Engineering CEO Lesiba Gwangwa to be finalised by year-end.
South Sudan ratifies border deal with Sudan despite protests.
And, the Institute for Security Studies says that additional police are not the answer to fighting crime effectively.
The Engineering Council of South Africa (or ECSA) will within 60 days finalise an investigation into whether On-Point Engineering CEO Lesiba Gwangwa had breached its code of conduct in relation to contracts awarded to his company in the Limpopo province.
The probe arises following Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s investigation and report on the unlawful awarding of tenders by the Limpopo government to Gwangwa’s company, through which former ANC Youth League president Julius Malema was found to have benefited “improperly”.
ECSA CEO Oswald Franks told Engineering News Online on Tuesday that Madonsela had referred the case to ECSA last week after an 18-month investigation into the R52-million 2009 tender.
Should Gwangwa be found to be in breach of the code sanctions could range from a reprimand through to a fine, suspension or even withdrawal of registration. This will, however, depend on the seriousness of the violation.
South Sudan's Parliament ratified a border and oil deal with Sudan on Tuesday. The deal intends to settle issues that brought the countries to the brink of resuming their two-decade civil war. It will also enable the South to revive its vital crude oil exports.
The agreement, ratified by an overwhelming majority, includes setting up a 10-km demilitarised zone along the border and in certain contested territories. This is an issue that has already triggered protests from southern border communities who fear losing their homelands to Sudan.
While the protests are unlikely to derail the deal, they show the difficulties both sides will face in reaching full, long-term agreements on contested areas and other issues. Officials say it will take between 3 and 12 months to get the production that both countries need to avoid economic collapse.
The Institute for Security Studies (or ISS) said that the country needs fewer, better-paid police officers to fight crime effectively.
ISS crime and justice programme head Gareth Newham told Parliament's Portfolio Committee on Police that swelling police numbers over the past few years were not necessarily having the desired impact.
He said the massive hiring approach in the South African Police Service since 2002 was as a result of communities wanting to see more visible policing. However, there were various problems that stemmed from creating so many new posts, as the increase in the number of shift commanders did not lead to better management.
As a result this has created perceptions that police were generally corrupt and officers could not be trusted. Newham said in the end it was about telling police they were doing a crucial job, paying them well, and reminding them that they were professionals.
Also making headlines:
Algeria awaits generational change in the ruling party ahead of 2014 elections.
African rhino poaching hits record figures in South Africa as a result of cancer cure claims.
And, Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs Edna Molewa has declared an acid mine drainage mitigation project an emergency government waterworks.
That’s a roundup of news making headlines today.