Author: Rod Amner

By KUHLEKONKE DLADLA They say good Samaritans do not exist, and if they do, they have a hidden agenda. But wait until you meet this remarkably compassionate woman with a heart of gold. Mary Birt can make anyone believe miracles exist. Her eyes have seen the horrors and beauty of this world. Known to many as Mama Mary, she is no stranger to the challenges and difficulties that face our home town. “A town divided. That’s the only way we can describe Makhanda,” says Birt, who has lived here for many decades and noted that many people were suffering due…

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By GAVIN GAKA Makhanda is our home, the place where diverse people and multiple climates converge. And it’s home to another home – for writers and their myriad voices and stories. Rhodes University’s Ink Society is an outlet for writers (mostly students) to express themselves via words. One of the society’s strongest voices and its chairman, Markan Nkhwazi, is one of the people currently residing within this community of writers. “Writing for me has always been about expressing and exploring your imagination. The more I write, the more I find I grow as a human being,” Nkhwazi said. Writing for…

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By BONGILE SIGONYELA The dining hall buzz is missing. It’s after lunch – precisely 2.30 pm – and the students of Courtenay-Latimer Hall on the Rhodes campus have gone their separate ways into the afternoon. At last, it is lunchtime for the catering staff. This is the only time they get to relax, rest their feet, and talk to Grocott’s Mail. “Life passes you by,” Lonwabo* says. He is a performing artist but has had to miss many opportunities to perform because he was working. He laments losing the chance to send a message out there on Human Rights Day,…

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By NWABISA NGUNA There’s a network of life-support agents in Makhanda, and their work sustains more than just local peckish people. Ivan Ngonichada is a part-time driver for Mr D, and Allen Chada is a full-time driver. Mr D Food is a tech company that delivers restaurant food to customers at home across South Africa. Ngonichada has been with Mr D for a year, while Chada has been there for a year and a half. Talk about a sizzling frien-chip! Ngonichada, an independent contractor, enjoys that independence as it allows him to do his own thing on the side –…

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By CHESLEY DANIELS Trying Stars confirmed their quarter-final spot in their EPRU Grand Challenge Competition with a 27-19 win over Despatch on Saturday at the Wentzel Park Sports Ground in Alexandria. The home side narrowly edged Despatch 17-14 at halftime. With the win, Stars finished in the second position of Group C on 50 points behind Park, who are log leaders on 64 and unbeaten in their 14 games. The top two teams of the four groups will advance to the quarter-final playoffs. Despatch drew first blood in the first five minutes of the game with a converted try to…

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By CHESLEY DANIELS Lily White ended the EPRU Grand Challenge competition with a hard-fought 28-22 win over a defiant KWARU side in their final Group C fixture encounter at the Albany Sports Ground on Saturday afternoon. The visitors KWARU were in a commanding 17-9 lead going into the halfway stage. This second-round win for Lily White over KWARU was the second win for the Makhanda side over their counterparts from Gqeberha. Blues also registered their first win over KWARU in their own backyard in PE in the first round. This vital win surely means a lot for the Blues as…

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Thanks to Nita’s Makhanda Events for these listings. FRIDAY 5 AUGUST Department of Political and International Studies Weekly SeminarSmall Arms Availability and Conflict in the Sahel – SaharaSpeaker: John PokooChair: Lesego Monyai@ Ruth Mompati Seminar Room, Politics Department, Rhodes University13:00 – 14:00 Signs of Spring by Saeculum AureumIn aid of Food4FuturesA Choral Recital focusing on unaccompanied singing from various periods, genres and languages.@ St. Bartholomew Church, cnr. Market and Bartholomew St.19:00Free entryDonations welcome Live Music with AlexVocal and guitar – Jazz, Neo Soul and Blues@ The Pothole and Donkey, 123 High Street19:00 – 21:00Free entry BiorhythmFeaturing:Matinino (Electro Dream Pop)Alex Collett (Neo Soul…

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The Action for Accountability project’s next public meeting is at the Assemblies of God Church, on Blackbeard Street, Scotts Farm, on Wednesday, 10 August, at 10 am. A4A is on a mission to influence public participation in the community, and all are warmly invited to attend.

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By MANDISI MAJAVU, Senior Lecturer, Department of Political and International Studies, Rhodes University One of the sources of social discontent in post-apartheid South Africa is the legacy of white racism. This toxic legacy is evident in racialised poverty and inequality. It is a historical fact that the economic prosperity of whites in South Africa is based on the racist exploitation and impoverishment of blacks. The long history of racism enabled white South Africans to enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world by the 1970s. In his new book, titled Can We Unlearn Racism?, Jacob R Boersema, a New York University academic,…

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By ROBYN TYLES, BRIAN RAMADIRO, CAROLYN MCKINNEY, and XOLISA GUZULA From the fourth year of schooling, the majority of South African schools teach all subjects in English only. The devastating learning consequences of this for children who speak African languages at home have been compellingly captured in the documentary film Sink or Swim. These consequences include a lack of conceptual understanding and little identification with the content. There are 12 official languages in South Africa, including South African sign language. The constitution allows any of these languages to be used as a medium of instruction in schools. But only English, and in a…

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