20 September 2013The countdown to the 20th anniversary of South Africa’s freedom and democracy officially began on Friday with the launch of the Freedom Fridays campaign – a call on all citizens to “wear anything that makes them feel proudly South African each Friday”.South Africans will celebrate 20 years of freedom and democracy on 27 April 2014. The day will mark two decades since South Africans of all races voted in the country’s first free and fair election, ushering in a new democratic dispensation.The Freedom Fridays campaign, which aims to build momentum in the run-up to the 20 years celebration, calls on all South Africans to take pride in their nation and celebrate the road they have travelled since 1994.It encourages South Africans, each Friday between now and 27 April 2014, to wear anything that expresses their pride in being a South African – including the colours of the national flag, traditional attire, national soccer or rugby team jerseys, or anything else that reflects solidarity with the 20 years celebrations.Speaking at the launch of the campaign at Sakhumzi Restaurant in Soweto on Friday, former political prisoner and anti-apartheid activist Ahmed Kathrada said the most important thing that the country had achieved since 1994 was human dignity.Holding up a sign with the words “This lift is for Europeans only – service lift is provided for tradesmen, non-Europeans, prams and dogs”, Kathrada said: “I am sure young people have never seen this before. I do not have to say anything more because one sentence has said it all.“Yes, 1994 brought us dignity. Apartheid is no longer there. Racism is now a criminal offence. But today we’ve got many challenges,” Kathrada said. “Poverty, unemployment, disease and children without schools are the new challenges we are facing.“I am glad that young people have already established what our new challenges are and I am confident that young people, who are the majority of our country, will stand up to the challenges that face us because there is no dignity in poverty, disease and hunger.”Speaking to SAnews afterwards, Bronwyn De Matros, a 38-year-old teacher from Redhill High in Morningside, Johannesburg said: “As a South African, I was so emotional when one of our struggle heroes demonstrated to us what he went through during the apartheid era.“It just showed to me how terrible apartheid was. It is painful to imagine what the generation before us went through during those turbulent years, but I am also glad that the democracy brought in 1994 has so far helped us as South Africans to live side by side.”Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile said the government fully endorsed the Freedom Fridays initiative. He urged all South Africans to be proud of their nationality and to celebrate who they are each Friday between now and 27 April 2014 by wearing anything that expressed their pride in being South African.“The message we are sending out is that we are proudly South Africans.”Mashatile said there was a lot to celebrate on the 20th anniversary. “Before 1994, black people had no right to vote at all. Our books were full of racial statutes that prohibited black people from going to certain areas, and one such racial law was the Group Areas Act, but all those laws are no longer exist.“We might have challenges that we still need to address, but we need to celebrate 20 years of stable democracy and as we celebrate, we are not going to fold our [arms] because they are still many hills to be climbed,” Mashatile said.“As South Africans, we are great people and we are building a great nation. I have no doubt that we are still going to achieve our goals. We are committed people, who are prepared to work very hard.”A grade 11 learner at St Martin High in Soweto, Tshogofatso Dhlamini, 16, said: “This is a good initiative, which will also help to teach us as young South Africans to love each other irrespective of different ethnic groups.”Pholoa Motlanthe, 16, a grade 10 learner at the same school, said: “Events like these help us, who were born after the dawn of democracy, to understand where the generations before us come from.”Freedom Fridays is fashioned after the inspirational Football Fridays campaign that united South Africans behind the 2010 Fifa World Cup, and the Magnificent Fridays campaign which mobilised South Africans to support the country’s national cricket, rugby and netball World Cup squads in 2011.Source: SAnews.gov.za
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Watford defender Kabasele taken to hospital after collision in Chelsea defeatby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWatford defender Christian Kabasele was immediately taken to hospital after colliding with a post in defeat to Chelsea.Kabasele was taken to hospital and given oxygen to numb the pain after being forced off.Despite returning to his feet momentarily, television pictures towards the end of the first half showed the former Genk man being wheeled into an ambulance on a stretcher with the aid of oxygen. With games coming thick and fast over the Christmas period, it is a blow for Watford to lose one of their key men at the back.
Fredericks: West Ham boost from Bournemouth drawby Paul Vegas25 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveRyan Fredericks says West Ham United have gained plenty of confidence from their 2-2 draw with Bournemouth on Saturday.The Hammers came back twice to steal a valuable away point which leaves in fourth place on the Premier League table.”Coming back like that gives us a lot of positive feelings,” Fredericks called the club’s website.”We’re a confident bunch anyway and we know we can go anywhere and pick up a result.”We didn’t panic when we went 2-1 down. Obviously it was frustrating to go behind, especially so early in the second half, but we knew we were going to get chances. “We have very good forward players who always create chances so we knew that as long as we didn’t concede a third we’d always have a chance of getting back in the game.”We’re a different beast this season. We don’t want to just be up there and think ‘it’s nice to be here’. We think we’re good enough to stay in and around these positions so we’re going to fight for every point, every goal and I think teams know that when they play against us it’s never going to be an easy game.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
AUBURN, AL – SEPTEMBER 17: Auburn Tigers play the Texas A&M Aggies during an NCAA college football game on September 17, 2016 in Auburn, Alabama. (Photo by Butch Dill/Getty Images)D’haquille Williams, one of the SEC’s top receivers, has left Auburn’s game against Jacksonville State after taking a nasty shot from the Gamecocks defense. Quarterback Jeremy Johnson tried to hit Williams over the middle, but he was unable to hang on, and got drilled by linebacker Dawson Wells. Williams went down after the play, but was able to slowly walk off the field.Not sure how Gus Malzahn would convince anyone this was targeting on Duke Williams. pic.twitter.com/MBVuroWsy8— Dr. Saturday (@YahooDrSaturday) September 12, 2015Gus Malzahn is furious no targeting call and points to new huge Auburn scoreboard with replay. pic.twitter.com/bdI4KTDzpb— Jon Solomon (@JonSolomonCBS) September 12, 2015It doesn’t look like targeting, but we can understand Malzahn being in up only three against an FCS team and losing arguably his best playmaker down the stretch. We’ll keep you updated on Williams’ status.
By Kenneth JacksonAPTN National NewsAs members of the Aamjiwnaang First Nation enter their fourth day of blocking a railway line running through their reserve in Sarnia, Ont., the mayor of the city is now questioning why Prime Minister Stephen Harper won’t just meet with First Nation leaders, the main demand of the protesters.The Aamjiwnaang protesters say they’re acting in solidarity with Attawapiskat First Nation Chief Theresa Spence who is in her 14th day of a hunger strike in Ottawa to force a meeting.“I don’t understand why Stephen Harper can’t unite Canadians by saying ‘yes, we will meet at the highest level possible and talk about these issues.’ There is a solution there and it’s not a difficult one. That’s the frustration,” said Sarnia Mayor Mike BradleyBradley said municipal officials have no intention of shutting the blockade down through force because they don’t want to impair relations between the City of Sarnia and Aamjiwnaang First Nation, which sits within the boundaries of the city.“This is an issue between the First Nations and the federal government and the community and the police service is in the middle. Our concerns are we have a very good relationship,” said Bradley. “CN (Rail) wants to ship products and get that line back open and we’re saying you’re going to have to live with some disruption until we can resolve this issue. Our long-term relationship is much more important to us as a community.”The blockade began Friday and won’t stop until Harper gives in to the demands of Spence, said blockade spokesman Ron Plain.Plain said they are disrupting shipments to dozens of oil refineries in an area known as Chemical Valley.He said CN representatives came to them Sunday trying to negotiate a closure of the blockade by promising to write Prime Minister Harper and urging him to meet with First Nation leaders.“We made them blink. They came to us (Sunday) to get us off the tracks. CN and companies of Chemical Valley are willing to write a letter to Harper telling him they want Harper to meet with Chief Spence,” he said. “Tha’s all well and good but until the meeting takes place we won’t consider taking it down. But the fact that we made them blink tells you something.”CN Rail spokesman Jim Feeny said they are calling on the local and federal governments to stop the “illegal” blockade.“Some plants are facing shutdowns if service is not resumed. It could potentially affect the supply of various products, including propane,” said Feeny.Plain said they have moved their blockade once after being served with a court injunction by CN police but now believe they are in a position where the courts can’t touch them.“The CN police came to the first site we were at and handed us an injunction to have us removed. There is several sites where these tracks cross reserve roads and there is one road in particular where there was no agreement ever made with the Indian agents over the road because the road didn’t exist when the Indian agents were around,” he said. “They don’t have permission to cross that road so that’s where we moved the blockade to on the second day and we have been there since. They can’t issue an injunction to that piece of road because they don’t have legal crossing on that road.”Plain said the crossings were negotiated back in the 1960s and because Chemical Valley grew so fast there are some crossings CN doesn’t have permission to cross.“We have several of these holes in their legislation because of Chemical Valley, because it was built so fast,” he said.Bradley said he hadn’t heard of this and was going to look into it. He was told there is a court date scheduled for Thursday to deal with the court injunction. As far as he knows police have the right to stop the blockade but will not.Plain also said they’ve been told their blockade is causing $5 million dollars a day in economic disruption but Bradley said while there is disruption he hasn’t heard of that number.Feeny said CN Rail is in a legal position to shut the blockade down and while there is some economic affect it’s too early for CN to say how much per day.Meanwhile, Aamjiwnaang members were also planning to shutdown Highway 402 and the Blue Water Bridge Monday halting traffic across the United States firstname.lastname@example.org@afixedaddress
TORONTO – Wall Street set another record high Tuesday on relatively minor movements as Canada’s largest stock index inched forward and the loonie cleared 80 cents US.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 84.07 points to 22,641.67. The S&P 500 index edged up 5.46 points to 2,534.58 and the Nasdaq composite index added 14.99 points to 6,531.71.North of the border, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index advanced 23.51 points to 15,728.51.“It’s a little sleepy today, pretty slow,” said Cavan Yie, a portfolio manager at Manulife Asset Management. “All you’re seeing is optimism in the markets being sustained.”“If you look at Canada,” Yie added, “the banks keep chugging along with share prices near all-time highs, with solid fundamentals to support them.”The TSX’s financials subsector was up nearly half a percentage point on Tuesday.Looking ahead to Friday, investors will be eyeing Statistics Canada’s labour force survey for September.RBC Economics Research has said Canadian employment is expected to continue to increase that month, rising 10,000 though this would be down from the 22,000 increase in August.“The slowing largely reflects the expectation that the gain in service-producing jobs drops to just 5,000 after the 35,900 surge in August,” it said in an investor’s note.Meanwhile, some U.S. economic reports may look abnormally weak because of the hurricanes that have recently struck the United States, such as this week’s upcoming report on hiring. But investors are expecting to see temporarily weaker numbers, which would limit the impact.In currency markets, the Canadian dollar was trading at an average price of 80 cents US, up 0.03 of a cent.The November crude contract fell 16 cents to US$50.42 per barrel and the November natural gas contract was down two cents at US$2.90 per mmBTU.The December gold contract gave back $1.20 cents to US$1,274.60 an ounce and the December copper contract was unchanged at US$2.96 a pound.Follow @DaveHTO on Twitter.
TORONTO – The TMX Group Ltd. says it’s launching a cryptocurrency brokerage service through the launch of its Shorcan Digital Currency Network subsidiary.The Toronto Stock Exchange owner says it’s partnering on the brokerage with Toronto-based Paycase Financial Corp., which specializes in decentralized financial services including a mobile-based remittance platform.TMX says the brokerage is designed to leverage Shorcan Brokers Ltd. background in providing brokerage services with Paycase’s cryptocurrency data aggregation platform and will focus on the Bitcoin and Ether cryptocurrencies.The partnership will also create cryptocurrency benchmarks based on consolidated data from the world’s leading crypto exchanges as well as over the counter brokered volume.TMX says the brokerage is a significant step in the execution of the company’s digital strategy as it looks to new ways to address client needs in both traditional and non-traditional markets.
LAS VEGAS — A judge in Nevada has temporarily blocked the planned release of a Massachusetts Gaming Commission report about allegations of sexual misconduct against former casino mogul Steve Wynn.A court aide says Clark County District Court Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez decided Monday she’ll hear arguments about whether the report contains confidential information and documents that Wynn attorneys say should be protected by attorney-client privilege.Wynn sued Nov. 7 to stop next month’s planned release of commission findings about whether Wynn engaged in sexual misconduct with female employees while he headed Las Vegas-based Wynn Resorts.Wynn resigned as company chief executive and chairman in February after misconduct claims were made against him.He denies the allegations.Wynn’s name has been removed from the company’s Massachusetts casino, now called Encore Boston Harbor.The Associated Press
Americans’ path to homeownership is likely to get more expensive this year, even as a severe shortage of homes for sale shows signs of easing.Mortgage rates, which climbed through much of last year, will continue to rise in 2019, driving up homebuyers’ borrowing costs and shutting others out of the market entirely. The projected result: a cooling housing market and falling home sales nationally.“On the whole, it’s going to be more expensive for buyers next year, despite the fact that they’ll have more options,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist at Realtor.com.The U.S housing market stalled in 2018 after a long period during which price increases outpaced income growth. That had been offset by historically low mortgage rates, until rates began rising steadily a year ago.While still low by historical standards, the average rate on a 30-year home loan was 4.55 per cent last week, according to mortgage buyer Freddie Mac. That’s up from 3.99 per cent a year earlier.Realtor.com and Redfin forecast the rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage will rise to 5.5 per cent by the end of 2019. Zillow expects rates will reach 5.8 per cent. That would be rates’ highest level since the last recession.A mere extra half percentage point can boost monthly payments and add tens of thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the typical 30-year loan.“Rising mortgage rates will take a bite out of affordability on top of an already supply- constrained and high-priced housing market,” Trulia senior economist Cheryl Young wrote in her forecast.As mortgage rates increase, so does the pressure on would-be buyers to lock in a rate and close a deal.Nate Vogel, a homebuyer in the Denver suburb of Lafayette, has felt some of that pressure after about a year looking for a home without success.Because of the limited number of homes for sale, especially under $500,000, the software engineering manager recently decided to look at homes at the top of his budget, $650,000. But that could be a problem if mortgage rates continue climbing.“If that interest rate goes up another per cent, that would make things much more uncomfortable,” said Vogel, 37. “At this point, no matter what house I buy, I’m sure the interest rate will probably be higher and the payment will be more.”Higher mortgage rates have already started dampening home sales. As of November, sales of previously occupied U.S. homes were down 7 per cent from a year earlier, the steepest decline since May 2011, when the housing market had yet to bounce back from the bust.Realtor.com predicts U.S. home sales will fall another 2 per cent in 2019.It’s not all bad news for would-be buyers, though. Economists project home prices will rise more slowly in 2019. Zillow’s forecast calls for prices to increase nationally by about 3.8 per cent. Realtor.com has them rising at just 2.2 per cent.Another plus for buyers: The number of homes on the market is expected to continue rising, albeit from historic low levels. The inventory of U.S. homes for sale was up 4.2 per cent as of November to 1.74 million units.Alex Veiga, The Associated Press
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Peace River Regional District has opened a new restroom facility at Mile 202 of the Alaska Highway.As part of the ‘Gotta Go’ pilot project, Electoral Area B Director Karen Goodings says this project is an important part of developing the Region’s transportation infrastructure, adding that this new restroom is a vital addition for those travelling through the area.“The ‘Gotta Go’ pilot project is an important part of developing our transportation infrastructure. Providing a rest area, increasing cell coverage, and providing information on our Alaska Highway will be a benefit to our important economic drivers, including tourism. Those of us who live and travel in our region know how vital the addition of this new rest area is and appreciate the cooperation of all involved to make it happen.” According to the District, more plans are underway to transform the area into a fully functioning rest stop, including picnic tables, a cellphone booster tower, and informational signage about the area and highway.The new facility was developed under the ‘Gotta Go’ pilot project in partnership with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, along with Northern B.C. Tourism and other various partners.