Tuesday, 13 December 2011
Cardinal Foley was the Christmas commentator for years: for the American English church. He was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI as head of the order of the Holy Sepulchre. That is: of getting charity for the Church in Jerusalem and the Middle East.
He is described as leaving thank you notes and making constant communication with friends and colleagues. They remember his jokes, and his ignoring of his cancer. His support of Salt and Light Television, his sentimentality and softness of person. His support for sometimes very politicised propaganda by Catholic News Service. His never bad mouthing a soul- allegedly.
Chaput notes his charismatic ability and that those who loved and cherished him and respected him: he hopes will be consoled. The Pope gave similar words.
Oddly lacking in all accounts is any claim that the man was even slightly effective as Head of the Social Communications department of the Vatican.
From the moment he retired there, news quality has gone considerably up.
The Cardinal died in Philadelphia.
The Deputy Shadow Minister of Transport has written to the Editor of the SACNS, as has been his habit for a long time, requesting that the following view be noted. We do not take sides in political matters at present although the Scripturelink Vote Service will when the next election occurs. The claims of the DA and their representatives while highly interesting are their own.
"Letter to the Editor
The Simelane ruling highlights the Zumafication of government
Earlier this month the Democratic Alliance was victorious in defending our Constitution. The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) found in the DA's favour that the appointment of Menzi Simelane as National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) in November 2009 was unconstitutional and as a result invalid. Judge Mohamed Navsa in the delivery of a unanimous decision emphasised the fact that the legislative and executive arms of government are not above the law. Judge Navsa reminded the government that it cannot ignore, defy or subvert the Concourt.
However Zuma and his government simply do not understand this. They also do not understand our Constitution. This is evident when Zuma was being questioned during a Parliamentary session recently, he said the following; "The powers conferred on the courts cannot be superior to the powers resulting from the political and consequently administrative mandate resulting from popular democratic elections." In other words Zuma's understanding is that once a party is elected it can govern like a dictatorship presumably until the next elections when it should be able to do so until the following elections.
This scary scenario is further reinforced as more of the ANC leadership demonstrate their ignorance of how our democracy was carved out and how it should work. ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe is quoted in the media as saying, "you can't have a judiciary that seeks to arrest the functioning of government" describing the Constitutional Court as a consolidation of opposition to government.
The ANC is simply ignoring the principles of separation of the powers and arms of government, especially the assurance that no government could impose their will unchecked. Again, this statement is supported by the fact that the cabinet will be appointing a research institute to review the Constitutional Court's decisions.
Almost weekly we see how President Zuma is running the country- by constructing the "Zumafication" of South Africa. An example of this is the fact that Zuma ignored concerns raised about Simelane's character during the Ginwala Commission of Inquiry into whether the then NDPP Vusi Pikoli was fit to hold office. In truth Simelane gave misleading evidence to the Ginwale Inquiry into the fitness for office of his predecessor, Vusi Pikoli.
This ruling has opened an even bigger can of worms; it is clear that the Minister of Justice, Jeff Radebe, who was supposed to have advised Zuma on Simelane's fitness for office, is loyal to President Zuma and not the Constitution. We can be sure that Radebe will continue to serve on Zuma's cabinet as it suits his plan perfectly.
Zuma's mission is simple: to "Zumafy" state institutions so that they shield and protect the President and his network from being accountable to the law for any illegal actions he may have committed.
The President is however left with a dilemma; who must he appoint as the National Director of Public Prosecutions. He needs to apply his mind this time round. If he doesn't then the potential is there that this could escalate into a constitutional crisis. For once, Zuma needs to follow the interests of the country and not himself. I somehow doubt it though.
Manny de Freitas MP
Member of Parliament
Shadow Deputy Minister for Transport
Member of Parliament for Johannesburg South
Wednesday, 7 December 2011
Was meant to go on my diary Blog!
Sometimes I feel a bit lonely. Today I certainly did. I noticed one of a female relative's magazines. I'd cleared it with everything else downstairs. Shape.
I simply looked through at the pictures of smiling women. Oddly pacifying!
So, last night, I help make chicken stir fry. Really it was half chicken stirred and half anything else fried.
I enjoyed cooking. Especially as I didn't have mom's guidance. Was a bit like swimming alone in a lake for the first time.
So, today... Was a day. A day to go down to the beautiful enclave of that cove we discovered on Monday.
Mostly some teenaged girls were bathing in the tepid Indian Ocean waves. I sat, then lay with my Oakleys sunglasses on, and tons of SPF 30. Finally, when the girls near the ocean calmed down, I went for a splash at the waves myself.
Was 30 degrees today (86 F)- so hectic heat.
I enjoyed the waves, at the height. It was almost midday. One to 7. One to seven. Intensity heightening like tension. Ebbing slowly away.
And hour in the surf, spray and sunspray. I hope I got a tan.
Today is my last day of Holiday in Margate. On Thursday we leave at 5 a.m. Then off to Kruger soon.
Saturday, 3 December 2011
The Johannesburg Star: headlines with the diplomatic storm, after heavily armed South African police tries to storm the Nigerian Consulate.
The Nigerian officials were accused of stealing the passports of 68 South African citizens after they allegedly refused to pay a bribe. Invasion of a diplomatic station is a serious crime in International law. Nicaragua v USA, is one case where the sovereignty issue was shown costly for a violator of it. Peru v Venezuela, at the ICJ also, however showed that the laws of sovereignty and embassies are limited and complex.
The invasion of "Nigeria" by police, doesn't rank near South Africa holding alleged Rwanda Genocide criminals. That is, diplomatically.
But, the taking of nearly 4 score South African's passports away, is a very serious matter also. Passports are property of the state. Passports are part of citizenship, a constitutional right.
Nigeria swiftly handed back the 68 South Africans' passports, and denied travel visas. Their staff, want the responsible parties for the "invasion" taken to task.
Precedent would say sovereignty is one of the strongest factors in any diplomatic activity. The South African constitution does not allow for the nation to go to war offensively.
The question, if this lands in the ICJ, is this: is the alleged human rights abuse of 68 members of one country by another: adequate justification for violating territory to "rescue" them. Especially, given the fact that Al Qaeda flies on South African passports.
Thursday, 1 December 2011
As the world powers cut back in funding for HIV/AIDS: endangering lives: one method is still very cheap. The oldest method.
Remember this. And that the organization which treats more than any other: of the ill who suffer with this virus, patients of all creeds: is the Catholic church.
Also! ARV treatments have had the greatest success after campaigns against dangerous sexual activities: polygamy and homosexual lifestyle. Condoms, have unfortunately often lead to an initial increase in infections due to false perceptions of "safety". Condoms are not 100% effective, and in preventing pregnancy also lag behind.
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