Justin Arenstein

Staff bail as Sangoco cash crisis deepens

Four senior staffers have resigned from the South African NGO Coalition (Sangoco) this month, as the funding crisis at Southern Africa's biggest non-profit umbrella body deepens. Head office operations manager Mabalane Mfundisi and research manager Fayrana Shabodien threw in the towel at the weekend, amid reports that Sangoco has battled to pay staff salaries for the second month running.

Cosatu strike empties Mpumalanga schools

SCHOOLING in Mpumalanga came to a virtual standstill on Wednesday as thousands of teachers joined protest actions by the Congress of South African Trade...

Two more arrested for matric exam scam

POLICE arrested another two Mpumalanga education officials in their Middelburg offices on Wednesday morning on forgery charges linked to the province's 1998 matric exam...

Two worlds tearing a boy’s dreams apart

Mpumalanga teenager Willie Sibuyi dreams of being a scientist one day, or an aircraft engineer. He has already wowed his neighbours in Chochocho village...

Feeding scam leaves children starving

Unscrupulous food suppliers are systematically stealing from starving children by plundering Mpumalanga's R34 -million school feeding scheme. A forensic audit completed in January indicates...

Donors ditch land NGO

South Africa's largest land rights movement, the 20-year-old National Land Committee (NLC), has been brought to its knees by ideological infighting, financial mismanagement and an exodus of member organisations. The crisis, which was set to be debated at an emergency board meeting on Thursday, has already frightened off the foreign donors who funded the NLC's umbrella structure since its inception.

Parastatal boss ‘UK-bound’

Mpumalanga's Economic Empowerment Corporation (Meec) this week backtracked on a public pledge by suppressing a damning forensic report on fraud and corruption at the corporation. Meec chief executive Ernest Khosa, who is being probed in connection with a series of irregular multimillion- rand loans, instead ''questioned'' board directors on aspects of the report's findings.

High price for land reform

The national government on Thursday ordered an urgent independent forensic investigation into 14 contentious deals in Mpumalanga that have cost the taxpayer R72,1-million. Chief land claims commissioner Tozi Gwanya has instructed senior independent property valuer Derick Griffiths to verify whether sales prices for the 14 vegetable and dairy farms in Mpumalanga's Badplaas valley were inflated or otherwise manipulated by land speculators and government officials.

Stats chief probed for graft

Statistician General Pali Lehohla's taste for expensive houses, with at least four traced so far, has prompted a high-level corruption investigation into his affairs. Minister of Finance Trevor Manuel has tasked the Public Service Commission (PSC) with discreetly probing Lehohla’s financial affairs to ensure that his property nest egg is not bankrolled by bribes or other irregular income.

A chequered career

Mpumalanga strongman Steve Mabona doesn’t like being trifled with. His violent temper and sharp tongue are legendary, with not even uniformed cops or magistrates safe from public tongue-lashings.

Hasta Manana

Mpumalanga's hardline health MEC Sibongile Manana may have finally met her match. The defiant former nurse has endured a string of sordid corruption scandals and last week stunned commentators by surviving an open revolt by African National Congress legislators who branded her department a national disgrace.

Dolphin dealer sinks?

The flamboyant tycoon behind Mpumalanga's infamous R50-billion Dolphin Deal has been arrested in Kenya after almost a decade on the run.

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