The new Northern Cape MEC of the Department of Health,  Fufe Makatong, visited Ben-del village to commemorate Repro-ductive Health Month on February 23, 2018.
Addressing the community mem-bers at the community hall, she said that people ought to have children when prepared to do so. As a result, the department is promoting dual protection approach where fertility control as well as prevention of sexual transmitted infections (STIs) is under prime advocacy to the broa-der community in the province.
“Our message as government to-day, is to make an appeal to you as communities - especially those who are still sexually active - to remain faithful to your partners and condo-mise. The youth should abstain in or-der to reduce the spread of diseases that ravage society in general.
“The fortunate part is that most of these diseases can be prevented and avoided, especially the sexually transmitted infections.
“This year's campaign is celebra-ted under the theme My health. My responsibility. Live a healthy lifestyle and use dual protection.
“A few years ago, government launched the coloured and scented male condoms, as part of our com-mitment to re-brand the choice con-doms. To date, max condoms are available at our facilities, free of charge, and this is aimed at promo-ting and increasing the use of pro-tection - particularly by younger people.
“We must not shy away from talk-ing about the realities. Let us emu-late what the late Tata Mandela stood for as he demonstrated to the entire country on how to use your personal life and that of your wider family, as examples to tackle issues affecting society in general - through education.
“At a time when one of his own sons, Makgatho Lewanika Mandela, who passed away in 2005 from HIV-related illnesses, the late Tata pub-licly called on each of us to consider
diseases like TB, cancer and STIs as normal illnesses – not something we must hide away and ignore. We are therefore calling upon you as residents, to learn from what Tata Mandela and many other fallen he-roes and heroines, including some from this area, fought for. Let us work together to fight and conquer this enemy called HIV, TB and STIs.”
She encouraged young women to take care of their health in order to deliver healthy babies. She said that the use of drugs, alcohol and mul-tiple partners put young women in the death trap.
Finally, there was an appeal that frequent visits to clinics are advis-able for the early detection of these ailments as a means of prevention control and management.

Few within the real estate industry can rival Charlene Maritz, when it comes to closing a deal and getting the job done.
Since joining RE/MAX Kalahari-Kathu, Charlene has consistently ranked among-st the top RE/MAX associates both regio-nally and nationally. She is no stranger to winning awards. She won the RE/MAX Chairman's Club and the RE/MAX Hall of Fame award at the RE/MAX of Southern Africa Awards - a glittering event at Sun City. She also finished 2017 as the number 1 sales associate in the Free State and Northern Cape region.
Charlene humbly attributes her success to her faith, hard work, colleagues, and her wonderfully supportive family.
Charlene said,” I believe it is my passion for people and an honest desire to look after their best interests. I truly love the satisfaction of bringing buyers or tenants to their dream homes or playing a funda-mental role in helping owners move on to the next phase in their lives. I meet so many different people and also learn so much form them and I am truly blessed to also form part of their lives.”

The Hawks Serious Corruption Investi-gation Unit conducted a search opera-tion at the Department of Education (Provincial office) in Kimberley, on 15 February 2018.
The allegation was about irregularities in the awarding of tenders with regard to the security tender and utilizing of Departmental funds to pay for SADTU conference without proof that it was held.
A search and seizure operation was then conducted at the Department, targeting va-rious offices and piles of documents were con-fiscated during the search.
No arrests have been made at this point and the investigation still continues.

Our local para-cyclist Barend Coet-zee just keeps on inspiring us all.
Recently Barend competed in the South African National Cycling Championships which were held in February 2018 in Oudts-hoorn. According to Barend, this is his seventh consecutive year he has been invi-ted to participate.
The morning of 06 February 2018, Ba-rend set off to compete in the individual time-trial whereby every cyclist competes against himself to ride a route in his fastest time possible. Barend explains: “It's a circular route of 14km which starts with an incline. With experience I have learnt to condition myself to set a steady pace throughout the race, so that I can maintain a constant speed, not to start too fast and burn out at the end.”
He claims he managed to keep a steady pace of 30km/h with his hand-cycle which in
the end ensured him a silver medal for the Timed-trial event.
After a good day's rest it was back to the road for the 42km road race. Unfortunately the thermometer in Oudtshoorn indicated a hefty 43 degrees which made it very difficult and uncom-ortable for the riders. This is where the true champions are separated  from the rest of the pack.
With the road race Barend claims he could keep a close eye on the competition and that the challenges he faced where what fueled him. These are the reasons he participates. He once again made us proud by securing a silver medal in the South African Champs for the group road race.
One can only sit back and admire Barend and be inspired, it's the challenges that inspire him to achieve. We all can learn a life lesson from this ! Well done Barend, we are so proud of you !

Thirteen is a lucky number for some people in the Tsantsa-bane district as thirteen de-serving young people received bur-saries from Kolomela mine to further their studies in 2018.
These students join last year's ele-ven bursary winners who are cur-rently studying at universities or TVET colleges.
The thirteen students received their letters of acceptance at a special ceremony on 26 January 2018, which was attended by Mr C Sehako from the Department of Education, the mayor of Tsantsaba-ne municipality councillor Maria Da-niels, and ward councillor Estelle Poto.
Sharing in the overall R1,5-million bursary value are Lesego Binang, Magdel Du Plooy, Fiona Lodewyk, Mapule Matsepane, Ntombikhona Mtetweni, Lehlohonolo Olyn, Ronal-dinho Roux and Refilwe Sello who are all enrolled at university. Atten-
ding the TVET colleges are Deliswa Nkune, Izelle Stlhodi, Lungisani Di-di, Malebo Mokwenyane and Queen De Bruin.
The bursaries cover registration and tuition fees, books, a laptop, ac-commodation and living allowan-ces, which relieves the students of any financial concerns and enables them to focus on their studies.
Councillor Maria Daniels gratefully acknowledged Kolomela's contribu-tion “Together with Kolomela we need to invest in the future of our young people so they are able to be-come better change agents and champions in life. We would like to see returns on these bursary invest-ments. To the learners I say, the fu-ture is in your hands, do not let us down.”
“When the mine conducted its so-cio-impact study in Tsantsabane in 2015, we found the level of educa-tion in the area to be very low,” says George Benjamin, Kolomela's Pub-lic Affairs manager. “Young people found it extremely difficult to enter the labour market and contribute to the economy of the area because they did not have the necessary skills.”
Education and skills development became a focus area within the mine's community development strategy. “Our objective is to work with our key education stakeholders to create an enabling learning envi-ronment for the toddlers entering our early childhood development pro-grammes all the way through the education pipeline to those deser-ving students entering tertiary stu-dy.”
At the same ceremony on 26 Jan-
uary, all the grade 1 learners from nine primary schools received their own schoolbags from Kolomela, filled with the necessary items for the year ahead. The young learners were also exposed to Monkeynastix - a unique movement education pro-gramme geared towards children under the age of eight and which en-courages them to explore and dis-cover the world through their senses and their bodies. It also wires their minds for academic success as they learn through movement.
“We believe in the potential of ev-ery single child here today and we support this belief with our two fa-vourite education projects that we celebrate today, ie the back to school campaign and the Kolomela mine community bursary scheme,” says George Benjamin.
Mr C Sehako, area circuit mana-ger, implored everyone to make a habit of teaching children to read, and to touch books. “Let us track down learners who require assis-tance and not wait until it is too late.
“The late Nelson Mandela said: 'Education is the great engine of per-sonal development. It is through ed-ucation that the daughter of a pea-sant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine, that the child of a farm worker can become the presi-dent of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.'
“To Kolomela mine, I don't have enough words of appreciation. Thank you, you are our partner. Let's grow our children together and make them better leaders of tomorrow.”

A contract to supply goods is worth very little when you do not have the wheels to get your business moving. Monica Nappie, a local businesswoman, realised this very early on in her entrepreneurial journey.
Monica established Khaya Mnandi in 2014 to supply perishable goods, such as milk, coffee and the likes, to feeding schemes and caterers. When she started providing goods
to Kolomela, she needed a larger vehicle to help her stock up more efficiently.
Anglo American's Zimele initiative advised Monica to buy a bigger vehicle and do single trips instead of doing two trips to fill an order. Anglo American's Zimele helped her get a much better interest rate, which reduced the repayments
Monica said “The Kolomela Small Business Development Centre has made it possible for me, as a small local business, to be ab-le to grow my business. This is making me feel very emotional and proud.”
Khaya Mnandi has four permanent staff members and two temporary staff mem-bers in her employ, and hopes that one day her business will generate more local employment so that it will expand.
Kolomela Small Business Development Centre was established in 2012 to service the needs of local entrepreneurs. The cen-tre offers internet access, copying and printing facilities, training and mentoring for free to the communities living in the Tsantsabane area.
Furthermore, the centre offers access to funding through the Anglo Zimele Commu-nity Fund.
The centre is situated at 21 Main Street in Postmasburg and can be contacted on 053 313 7615.

Councillors of the EFF in the Joe Mo-rolong municipality closed the of-fices of the municipality on February 05, 2018 for the better part of the day.
The disgruntlements leading to the clo-sure were about the circumstances sur-rounding the water crisis, the chief financial officer's reinstatement, and the VAT re-covery consultant.
Briefing the media, the articulate mayor of the beleaguered municipality, councillor Di-no Leutlwane, said that the water crisis in the vast Joe Morolong municipality is not a designed, but rather a natural phenome-non, characterised by the historical and geographical background of the area. Ano-ther cause of the scarcity of the precious liquid is lack or obsolete infrastructure, lack of water sources or dried up sources.
“This infrastructure is very old and the magnitude of this challenge varies from one area to another. The ageing material is suc-cumbing, hence the regular leakages and these disrupt the smooth flow of water where and when available. This keeps the maintenance crews on their toes to stop re-curring leakages.
“On the other hand, the municipality is try-ing to replace the aged underground ma-terial and equipment to ensure water sup-plies are smooth to the broader community. We are doing something towards the re-habilitation of the infrastructure and our motto is to deliver adequate services to the community. Water provision to the com-munity knows no politics and as such we cannot use it as an ideological leverage.”
The issue surrounding the chief financial officer is that she resigned and soon there-after, withdrew her resignation. The matter
was tabled at a council meeting leading to the approval of the withdrawal of her resig-nation.
The mayor was taken to task over the VAT recovery consultant Mabasotho who had been engaged by the previous administra-tion or council. The mayor said outright that Mabasotho consultancy had been appoint-ed on May 01, 2016.
In the 2016/17 audit report, the large monthly payments made to the consultancy by the municipality alerted the auditor ge-neral who classified them as irregular ex-penditure.
This matter, according to the Municipal Finance Management Act, must now be re-ferred to the Municipal Public Accounts Committee by council for investigation. It is estimated that around R25-million was gob-bled up by the suspicious consultant. The new council has since stopped payment to this dubious consultancy.