Sangoma in court for allegedly forcing student to walk over burning coal


PORT ELIZABETH – A Port Elizabeth sangoma made a brief appearance in the New Brighton Magistrate’s Court on Monday for allegedly forcing a woman to walk over burning coals.

Police spokesperson, Captain Andre Beetge, said a case against 45-year-old Nomatamsanqa Madlamini Meze was opened and she was subsequently arrested over the weekend.

Beetge said the complainant, 40-year-old Pumeze Lugawu, opened a case after she was admitted to Dora Nginza Hospital for serious burn wounds to both her feet.

“The incident happened on 8 July 2017 when the victim was undergoing a training ritual as a sangoma and was forced to walk over burning coals.

“Since the incident, the victim went to a health clinic, she was then referred to a doctor, until finally being admitted to hospital,” said Beetge.

Meze is facing charges of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

The case against her was postponed until October 19 for further investigation.

– African News Agency (ANA)

Girls with disabilities reaching for the stars


CAPE TOWN – Mr South Africa Habib Noorbhai addressed a group of young teenage girls with disabilities and said “having a disability should not make you feel inferior, it makes you unique”.

Noorbhai addressed the young girls during the 3rd annual Celebration and Empowerment Workshop held by the Women’s Achievement Network for Disability (WAND) at Artscape on Friday during the Artscape Woman and Humanity Arts Festival.

Sixty girls from Jan Kriel School, Paarl School, Astra School and Tembaletu School for Learners with Special Needs attended the workshop.

WAND co-founders Karen Smit and Artscape CEO Marlene le Roux welcomed the schoolgirls, telling them that WAND existed to show girls with disabilities that they are capable of living successful, full lives, despite the barriers they encounter in their lives.

Noorbhai told the crowd that persons with disabilities have extraordinary abilities as each person “brings something extra” to this world. He encouraged the high school learners to dream big. “Don’t stay in the plateau, go beyond, work smart and chase your dreams”.

Noorbhai briefly shared with the girls how he is the shortest, skinniest Mr South Africa in the competition’s history, telling them that achieving a dream is not impossible and they need to be bold and believe in their dreams.

Keynote speaker writer and director Hennie van Greunen shared his story of growing up with a sibling who has a disability and how the experience heightened his empathetic capabilities and developed his listening skills.

Speaking to the girls, van Greunen said that even though they may appear weak or lacking to someone who doesn’t understand them, what is on the inside of them must be stronger than what is visible on the outside because their voices must be heard. “Be infinitely bigger on the inside than on the outside and make your inside better than the outside” he emphasised.

“We live in a country where people still need to be educated about disability,” he said.

He highlighted the importance of knowing what your skills and strengths are for “we all have one skill that we do better than other people”.

Those skills and strengths he told the girls, are the keys for shaping their future for themselves and not having their lives shaped by people who don’t understand them, or what they want.

“Your story is shaped by you, not by society.”

Radio presenters and DJs Tracey Lange and Bonita Blanckenberg shared how they overcame their challenges as women in the workplace.

Blackenberg who has been blind from birth told the girls that she didn’t let her blindness stop her from pursuing a career in radio.

“You need to stand your ground. It might not work out the first time, or the second time, but never stop believing. Don’t ever let go of your passion, even if your circumstances are not what you want them to be, don’t give up on your passion.”

Lange shared how one decision to follow her gut about leaving a company she once worked for due to harassment led her to a fulfilling career in radio. She said the decisions you make impact your future.

Le Roux and Smit shared their stories and their triumphs of overcoming their disabilities. Smit has rheumatoid arthritis and le Roux was affected by polio.

“It is very important for you to make yourself heard,” said Smit.

Le Roux agreed: “We met when we were at the hospital, and we were seen as medical objects. No one asked us what we wanted.”

Becoming successful women in the workplace, they each told the girls, takes hard work and doesn’t happen overnight.

“We never knew we would have to prove ourselves for the rest of our lives.”

Smit said it was important to “turn something into an opportunity” and make it work.

“You need to know your rights to enable you to participate fully in the workplace and at home, and always push the boundaries.”

A few girls shared what their dreams were, saying they wanted to become beauticians, lawyers, pharmacists, fashion designers, actresses, motivational speakers and makeup artists.

“Today you have shared your dreams. Now ask yourselves: ‘What little steps do I need to do to bring this dream true?’,” said le Roux.

“Don’t wait for someone else to fulfil your dream.”

– African News Agency (ANA)

10 Inspiring quotes from Mzansi’s Top 100 of 2017

Launch of Mzansi's Top 100 of 2017 Source: TYI

We were all privy to GauTv and Studio Independent’s live streaming of the annual “Mzansi’s Top 100 Leaders of 2017” awards ceremony, held at the exclusive Houghton Golf club in Johannesburg.

The excitement was palpable as the 15 category winners of 2017 were announced.

Congratulations again, to the Top 100 of 2017.

Keep on inspiring!

The winners of The Young Independents Top 100 Award were recognised in five categories namely; the disruptors, the healers, the influencers, the innovators and the trailblazers.

The disruptors: Recognising young people challenging the status quo or traditional thinking with their unconventional ideas and actions.

The healers: Young medical practitioners and educators, involved with environmental work such as recycling, and NGO workers.

The influencers: Recognising young people who are influencing the actions and behaviours of brands, policies and people, and this includes government leaders, trendsetters, social media gurus, and critics.

The innovators: Celebrates young people inventing new products, and business ideas or services that are changing the way we live, work and play; this includes young people driving business or technology, scientists, architects, and chefs.

The trailblazers: Recognises young people leading their field at local, national, and international levels. These include top sports stars, academics, scientists, and business leaders.

Here’s a compilation of inspiring quotes from our Top 100 of 2017 to keep you going this week:

1. Disruptor, Sibs Shongwe-La Mer

“If I weren’t doing this, I’d likely be dead, on heroine or homeless. I couldn’t survive any other way. Imagining up worlds is all I’m good for.”

Sibs Shongwe-La Mer lives by the words “give it all, no drop spared”.

Words that also account for this 25-year-old’s daily pursuit to make his entire life about art. His creative pilgrimage meandered through prep school plays and dreams of becoming a stage director.

His 2015 film, Necktie Youth – an uncomfortably honest glimpse at the lives of the (mostly overlooked) affluent, born-free generation – won the Grand Jury Prize (World Cinema Amsterdam Film Festival, 2015).

It also won Best Director and Best SA Feature Film (Durban International Film Festival, 2015) and the TV5 Award (Carthage Film Festival, 2015).

2. Disruptor, Dr Anastacia Tomson

“The hardest lesson I have learnt is that life isn’t always fair or just.”

Anastacia Tomson, 31, embarked on four journeys to get to where she is today. The first was to study medicine, the
second to transition from male to female, the third to write about it, and the fourth to fight for it.

Today, these four journeys are perfectly interwoven in the daily fabric of Tomson’s life as a medical doctor, author, and transgender activist.

3. Disruptor, Naadiya Moosajee

“When life is not fair, get over it.”

As a female engineer, Naadiya Moosajee often encountered discrimination and harassment in the workplace, and was even cyber-stalked by a colleague.

Determined to turn things around, she and her friend, fellow engineer Hema Vallabh, hosted a conference showcasing the technical excellence of women under the banner, SA WomEng.

More than a decade later, the group is a global force, instrumental in developing strong female engineering talent pipelines.

4. Innovator, Paseka Lesolang 

“The best advice I’ve ever been given was take care of your business and the business will take care of you.”

Lesolang’s company is at the centre of South Africa’s green economy. Among other achievements, his product was endorsed as a smart solution by Trade and Investment KwaZulu-Natal in 2009. In 2010, Lesolang was named Entrepreneur of the Year by the University of Pretoria, and WHC was selected as one of 15 delegate companies at the 2010 Shanghai EXPO.

Lesolang also won first prize in the City of Johannesburg’s Green City Startup Awards in 2015, winning R1-million for his innovation – Leak-Less Valve™.

5. Innovator, Nthabeleng Likotsi 

“I live by the words: God will never give me what I can’t handle.”

In 2009, Likotsi founded the Young Women in Business Network Holdings (YWBN), a broad-based investment company owned, controlled and managed by women.

Seven years later, YWBN has 271 members and R2 million capital – a solid grounding for building a financial empire.

6. Innovator, Dave Blakey 

“If you want to succeed, you need to adapt, see what’s happening, and adapt.”

From a young age, Blakey has been all about business. He received his A+ computer technician certification at age 11, and became a Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert by 13, all the while learning about business from his father.

Snapt was initially aimed at SMEs, but that soon changed when NASA phoned to place an order.

Today he is the founder of Snapt- a software load balancer, web accelerator and application firewall. This company competes against the giants in the world of computer science.

7. Trailblazer, Wayde van Niekerk 

“If you want to succeed you need to believe in yourself and love what you do.”

At 24, Wayde van Niekerk is living up to the hype he created at the 2016 Olympic Games when he clinched gold in the men’s 400m, smashing Michael Johnson’s 1999 world record in the process.

His Olympic success was preceded by his 400m gold at the 2015 World Championships.

It’s no wonder he won the award for Best Male Athlete at the Rio 2016 Olympics. It’s not just the medals that make van Niekerk a darling of the press.

He’s well known for being a gentleman, on and off the track, and always takes the time to sign autographs for his growing number of fans.

8. Trailblazer, Seabelo Senatla 

“I live by the words: Be you, all the other characters are already taken.”

The concorde on the field. This 25 year old has been tearing rugby field apart, leaving his opponents confused as he soars past them with easy.

He claim bronze at the Olympic games in Rio last year, gold in both Cali World Games in 201 and the Commonwealth Games 2014.

To top this all off he helped the Bliztbokke claim the World Series Title for the second time since 2008.

9. Healer, Jessica Dewhurst 

“If you have privilege, you have an immediate responsibility to use it to change the lives of others.”

She displayed a heart of gold from the the tender age of 14.

During her high school years, Jessica spent most of her time addressing social inequalities.

In 2013, while still a student, Dewhurst co-founded the Edmund Rice Justice Desk in Cape Town. The organisation operates in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Zambia. It focuses on educating, advocating for, and equipping youth, vulnerable groups, civil society and governments across South-Central Africa in human rights, justice and advocacy.

It works primarily in township areas and vulnerable communities, empowering and equipping communities to lead their own change.

As the director of the organisation, it’s Dewhurst’s task to develop a yearly formation programme that will educate and skill ERNSA members, as well as the general public around Social Justice and Advocacy issues. For her work, Dewhurst received recognition from President Jacob Zuma, and Prince Edward, and was honoured with a Queen’s Young Leaders Award in 2016.

10. Influencer, Katlego Maboe 

“If you can dream it, you can do it.”

His debut was on the lifestyle magazine show, De Kat, before he moved onto investigative journalism on 50/50. Six years ago, Maboe landed an audition for the live morning show, Expresso, and he hasn’t looked back.

His work on Expresso earned him the South African Film and Television Award for Best Presenter in 2015, and a second one in 2016.

– Compiled by Leland Edwards

Young blood might be the answer to eternal youth


London – An American start-up company has adopted the idea of eternal youth by offering transfusions of young blood for £6 200 (about R105 000).

Older recipients receive two litres of blood plasma – the liquid part of blood – from someone aged 16 to 25.

While the service has little scientific backing, there seems to be some appetite for it.

Jesse Karmazin, who has a degree in medicine, claims his firm Ambrosia, based in Silicon Valley, has 100 people with an average age of 65 on his books undergoing the ‘treatment’. He said: “It could help improve things such as appearance or diabetes or heart function or memory.”

“I’m not really in the camp of saying this will provide immortality but I think it comes pretty close, essentially.”

Speaking to The Observer, he added: “It’s like plastic surgery from the inside out.”

Ambrosia gets its supplies by buying surplus blood from blood banks.

In May, Mr Karmazin claimed that customers’ blood cholesterol levels fell 10 per cent and a biomarker linked to increased risk of cancer fell by 20 per cent.

Amyloids, substances that form plaques in people with Alzheimer’s, were reportedly 20 per cent lower.

An experiment that linked the blood vessels of young mice to old mice found that the young mice deteriorated, while the old mice improved, the journal Cell reports.

Transfusions are considered safe but may cause a rash, lung injury and infections.

Daily Mail.

Call for action against barbaric violence at Richard’s Bay school

Source: Video Screen grab

RICHARDS BAY– The African National Congress in KwaZulu-Natal on Sunday called for “urgent arrests and disciplinary action on all those involved in turning a school into a war zone” in Richards Bay.

The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal was appalled by the recent reports of barbaric and inhumane incidents of violence at a well-known school in Richards Bay, on the KwaZulu-Natal north coast, ANC provincial spokesperson Mdumiseni Ntuli said.

“A horrifying video, currently circulating, depicting an unidentified group of learners engaging in serious acts of violence and viciously attacking each other on school premises has sent shock waves and raised concerns to parents about the safety of their kids.

“What is even more disturbing is that the learners are seen in possession of knives and other dangerous weapons while other learners, mainly female, [are] screaming and scurrying for cover,” Ntuli said.

“The ANC calls for urgent arrests and disciplinary action on all those involved in turning a school into a war zone. This incident, if not responded to with the concomitant punishment it deserves, will have a negative lifelong emotional and psychological impact on learners who are victims of this scary incident.”

The ANC called on those who witnessed the incident to come forward and provide evidence that would lead to the successful prosecution of the perpetrators of this shameful act. To the ANC, schools should be centers of learning and teaching, not the sites of violence, gangsterism, and criminality.

The ANC called on education MEC Mthandeni Dlungwane to act decisively on this matter and ensure that acts of bullying and violent conduct were nipped in the bud at all schools. Education was a number one priority in the country and no parent should fear sending their children to school because they may be harmed.

The education department should also work hand in hand with relevant stakeholders such as the South African Police Service (SAPS) to prevent acts of criminality at school surroundings and the public in general.

“The ANC is of the view that parents and communities in general should also play their role and take active interest on the day to day running of the schools. We call upon all stakeholders to unite and stand against any form of school-based violence,” Ntuli said.

– African News Agency (ANA)

Jacob Zuma Foundation unable to pay student fees

Jacob Zuma Source: IOL

CAPE TOWN – The Democratic Alliance has noted with disappointment the Jacob G Zuma Foundation’s inability to pay the 2016 fees of at least 30 university students.

“It is ironic that on the eve of the release of the president’s commission of inquiry into fee-free higher education the charitable foundation which bears his name finds itself unable to keep its promises to students,” DA spokeswoman Belinda Bozzoli said on Sunday.

A number of students from poor backgrounds, particularly those at the University of Zululand, had been left high and dry by the foundation which had either run out of funds or had exercised poor planning of its financial affairs, she said.

Either way, this was a scandal as the futures of many students now hung in the balance. The DA called on President Jacob Zuma to urgently review the impact of the foundation’s failure to pay the tuition fees of those students who were already awarded bursaries.

The lack of access to higher education was among the causes of unemployment in South Africa and the foundation’s failed bursary scheme put even more students in a difficult position. It was bad enough that thousands of students from impoverished homes had to protest to secure financial support from the state.

“The foundation added further insult to injury by offering support to students only to withdraw it because of its own ‘financial difficulties’. The move was irresponsible and cruel to the affected students,” Bozzoli said.

It was also outrageous that the foundation had put pressure on universities to pick up the slack when those very institutions were in financial difficulties themselves. The foundation had also tried to palm its bursary holders off on the already-strained National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) to “alleviate the financial burden”.

Raising private money and spending it wisely were matters that required care and responsibility. The issue of access to higher education was one that was intrinsically linked to one’s ability to access the job market. This could not be used as a political football or a failed legacy project for the president.

If Zuma truly cared about the work that this foundation was established to do he should make a personal commitment to ensure that those who had been promised bursaries would not be left in the lurch, Bozzoli said.

– African News Agency (ANA)

How to future-proof your career prospects

Source: Ruslan Burlaka

It is no secret that the world of work is shifting, and that individuals need to prepare for this changing landscape if they want their skills to remain in demand.

And the way to do so, is to become a SMART worker, an employment expert says.

“Within the next decade – and we are already seeing this happening to some degree – the traditional employer/employee relationship will be largely a thing of the past,” says Georgina Barrick, MD of Cassel&Co, Insource ICT and IT Edge – the specialised recruitment agencies of ADvTECH Resourcing focusing on Finance, Accounting and IT.

She says that by 2030, historical workplace structures will overwhelmingly have been replaced by the concept of workers as consultants and their own bosses, who sell their services to client companies.

“As we move away from the idea of the employee working for one company, depending on that company for everything from their salary to the promise that they will in all likelihood be able to rely on that company for a safe and ongoing income, individuals need to understand how they can navigate the workplace market in the not-so-distant future,” says Barrick.

And this is where being SMART comes in.

“SMART is an acronym for the profile of future-fit workers: Specialist, Mobile, Adaptable, Resilient and Talented. Being SMART will be the key to surviving and thriving in the new world of work,” she says.

Barrick says the driving forces behind the changing work environment include rapid and ongoing technological innovation, which is responsible for the disruption of historic industries and old economic systems. This gives rise to new industries and jobs, but also means that an estimated 50% of all jobs currently in existence – including white collar roles – will become automated.

“Already, we are seeing evidence of so-called creative destruction in rising global unemployment, declining average length of service, increasing mid-career transitions and disruption across all industries,” says Barrick.

“Over the next five years, the World Economic Forum estimates that we’ll see the decline of job families like Office, Administration, Manufacturing and Production. Conversely, there should be a rise in the importance of Business and Financial Operations, Information Technology, Mathematical, Architectural and Engineering roles.

“While these are certainly scary times, they are also exciting, as we enter an age where the goal of a bigger return for less work may be achieved, but only if you have the right skills and are able to adapt to a rapidly changing work environment.”

Barrick says global research has identified 4 major trends that will impact the world of work over the next 15 years:


“Globally, we are seeing a continuation of the growing trend towards short term work.

According to the International Labour Organisation’s ‘The Changing Nature of Jobs’, 75% of the global workforce is currently employed on temporary or short-term contracts.

It is believed that by 2030, workers will work ‘with’, not ‘for’, companies and will work with multiple ‘clients’ simultaneously, joining skills guilds, rather than becoming employees.

The focus will be on knowledge workers, who can do their jobs anywhere and at any time.

This idea of workers as entrepreneurs will promote flexibility and autonomy – and will benefit high-skill workers.”


Already, the idea that you study and then use what you’ve learned to follow a career at one company throughout your life has become obsolete, notes Barrick.

“Lifelong learning, where workers constantly reskill or renew skills every 5 years, is becoming the norm,” she says.


“The emphasis is shifting away from chasing money at all costs to a focus on critical values, like work/life balance, happiness and fulfilment,” says Barrick.

“In future, there will increasingly be a shift away from the culture of ‘overwork’ towards a system where work is enmeshed in life – and reward is based on expertise and results, and not on job title or length of service.”


Technology already enables remote work and, as fibre becomes the norm in South Africa, internet speed is no longer the inhibitor it was 10 years ago.

“Over the next 15 years, it’s predicted that rapid technological innovation will promote 24/7 work performed by employees in different geographic locations and time zones. The traditional notion of a ‘corner office’ as we know it today will become obsolete as workers work remotely, hot desk and collaborate in ways we can’t yet imagine.”

“Ultimately what all of this means, is that individuals need to become more adaptable, and be able to manage their careers with greater resilience and flexibility,” says Barrick.

“They also need to become adept at building their personal brands and selling themselves on a fluid job market. Reputation management, customer relations and negotiation will be key to the worker of the future. Additionally, they need to take responsibility for lifelong learning and regular upskilling, with a good dash of entrepreneurship thrown in.”

Employers of the future also need to adapt, she warns.

“They will need to be able to manage complexity and ambiguity effectively, and quickly and efficiently identify skills gaps and tap into the freelance market.

Additionally, employers should already start investigating how they can develop collaborative, global, and virtual working environments in order to attract the best talent.”

Mzansi’s 100 of 2017: Trailblazer, Luvo Manyonga

Photo: Siyabulela Duda

Luvo Manyonga (26) was born into a life of socio-economic struggle.

Raised by a single mother, outside Paarl, he took to athletics to escape the hardships of his life. His raw talent was quickly identified by local coach, Mario Smith, who took him under his wing and became a father figure to the gifted Manyonga.

A fairytale career blossomed, which saw Manyonga crowned World Long Jump Junior Champion in 2010. But his story took a dark turn when he fell into the wrong crowd and a TIK (crystal methamphetamine) addiction in 2012. It could have been the end, but in 2014 Manyonga chose to jump, rather than die. He set about making up for the four athletic seasons he had missed.

Two years later and he clinched silver with an impressive 8.23m jump at the 2016 African Championships. We may never know the true courage and willpower it took, but no-one will ever forget Manyonga, standing on the winner’s podium at Rio, beaming as brightly as the silver medal he fought so hard for. That was the start of a new chapter and a new African record of 8.62m, which he set in Pretoria earlier this year.

The next step is sure to be another giant leap forward.

|The hardest lesson I have learnt is that bad company ruins good morals.|

Mzansi’s 100 of 2017: Trailblazer, Henri Schoeman

Photo: ©Christiaan Kotze/SASPA

Henri Schoeman made history last year in Rio, when he became the first South African to ever win a medal in the triathlon event.

What the South African public may not know is that the 26-year-old won bronze shortly after recovering from a severe chest infection, a testament to his dedication and discipline. Schoeman, renowned for his cycling and swimming dominance, surprised many at the Olympics with a strong running performance that helped him clinch third place and claim his place among the world’s best.

His Olympic bronze was achieved off the back of his gold medal at the 2016 ITU Grand Final in Cozumel, Mexico, which saw him finish the season in fourth place overall. The passionate triathlete also spends time developing the next generation of triathletes alongside his coach and father, Joe Schoeman.

True to his millennial status, Schoeman uses technology, most notably Skype, to hold virtual cycling sessions with enthusiasts from all over the world, as he gives back to the sport that has given him so much. Schoeman has only scratched the surface of his seemingly endless talent.

If his recent performance is anything to go by, we can expect more accolades and another Olympic podium finish by the time he turns 30.

|Stay humble and always remain who you truly are.|

Mzansi’s 100 of 2017: Trailblazer, Paul Modjadji

Source: TYI

Leading his life as if it’s a dance, Paul Modjadji never stops moving.

If he’s not leaping on the stage, he’s whirling through writing his next script, or soaring through roles as a choreographer, entrepreneur and social activist. Inspired by films like Sarafina and Fame, this dynamic 33-year-old from Temba township won a scholarship to study dance in Denmark, before returning to work on the local soapie, Backstage.

After studying Journalism and Media Studies, he started his entertainment company, Imvula Pula. He danced his way onto global stages, winning both the European DanceStar World Masters in 2011, and top dancer in the world for the Talent America Showcase in 2013.

In 2015, he was selected for a Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, which led him to rub shoulders with officials in the White House. Despite his international accolades, he remains dedicated to Africa, choreographing South Africa’s first made-for-cinema dance movie, Hear Me Move, in 2014.

He also founded the Dare to Dream Movement, a project that aims to empower young people by providing arts education to townships, both locally and on the continent.

With creativity being the catalyst for his own success, Modjadji believes art can change the world, and that communities need art to express their truth and heal.

|Don’t quit because it’s hard, quit because the passion is dead.|

Ongoing Initiatives

Join The Young Independents Community