Tag: tame TIMES

INTERNATIONAL NEWS: L’Oreal to remove words like ‘whitening’ from skin products

French cosmetics giant L’Oreal said Saturday that it will remove words like “whitening” from its skin care products, a move that comes amid global protests against racism sparked by the death of George Floyd in the United States.

The company said in a statement that it “has decided to remove the words white/whitening, fair/fairness, light/lightening from all its skin evening products.”

L’Oreal’s decision follows a similar move by Anglo-Dutch firm Unilever last Thursday. It is among a number of companies that have been the target of criticism in the wake of Floyd’s death following his arrest in Minneapolis.

Earlier this month, L’Oreal tweeted that that it “stands in solidarity with the Black community and against injustice of any kind. … Speaking out is worth it.”

The post drew a negative reaction from people who see the company’s business model and advertising as focused on white consumers.

Johnson & Johnson

Johnson & Johnson will also discontinue the Neutrogena Fine Fairness line in Asia and the Middle East amid growing criticism of skin-lightening products, including rival Unilever’s Fair & Lovely brand.

Conversations over the past few weeks highlighted that the name of our Neutrogena Fine Fairness line may be perceived in an unintended way as it represents fairness as better than your own unique skin tone,” a J&J spokeswoman said in a statement. “Grounded in the belief that healthy skin is beautiful skin, we made the business decisions to no longer sell the Fine Fairness product line.”

J&J said its global Neutrogena portfolio “uses ingredients that help boost skin cell turnover to even out the skin’s natural skin tone and smooth skin’s texture. We also use anti-aging ingredients that help fade the look of dark spots that naturally occur over time with aging and sun exposure. We do not sell products that bleach the skin.”

The Fine Fairness line uses a retinol formula to lighten dark spots, but doesn’t bleach the skin, she said.

J&J will work to replace the line with “the Neutrogena Bright Boost collection that uses resurfacing ingredients like Neoglucosamine to boost skin’s natural renewal process for brighter, more even skin tone, she said. It was developed to “meet the diverse needs of all skin types, even in different environments around the world,” she said.

J&J says its website and retailer pages are being updated now to remove links to purchase Fine Fairness products.

“For a short while products may still appear on a limited number of in-store shelves as stock runs through. We will no longer produce or ship the product line.”

Sources: Associated Press, AdAge

Photo Credit: Associated Press

 

COVID-19: Gauteng approves 4.9% hospital tariff increase.

The Gauteng provincial legislature’s committee on scrutiny of subordinate legislation has approved regulations which gives effect to the annual adjustment fee of 4.9% for hospital tariffs, according to News24.

The adjusted fee is on services payable by patients at provincial hospitals, mortuaries and for ambulance services, according to a statement issued on behalf of the chairperson of the committee Dulton Adams.

The amended regulations, which were presented by the Gauteng Department of Health will come into effect from 1 July.

“In approving these adjustments, the committee took into consideration the current unfavourable economic environment brought about by Covid-19 and its impact on ordinary citizens as well as the need for the provincial government to generate revenue in order to strengthen its capacity to provide much needed healthcare services,” Adams said.

He said the committee noted that the fee adjustments were necessary to ensure public hospitals had the necessary resources to function effectively.

However, not all patients would be subjected to paying for these services, he said.

Patients exempt from paying for healthcare services include:

  1. Children under six
  2. Pregnant women – social pensioners
  3. Any persons receiving social grants
  4. Formally unemployed people

“In terms of the approved regulations, all foreign nationals are classified as fully paying patients except for refugees with valid documents.”

Source: News24

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Kruger News: Warthogs steal and eat cheetah’s meal

The video was taken by 41-year-old Shakera Kaloo, who had the opportunity to witness the rare sighting on June 18.

Kaloo said the sighting was unusual and interesting.

“Even more surprising than seeing warthogs at an impala catch was the fact that the cheetah did not even fight to protect the meal once the warthogs advanced closer to the food and instead walked way, submitting the impala to the warthogs.

“We’ve never seen a warthog doing this — nor did we know that warthogs eat meat from a carcass. The sighting ended with the cheetah walking away from the kill. It walked along the side and sat on the signpost before moving off into the bush.”

Source: TimesLive

Ekurhuleni DA launches, Take Back Your Power campaign

A crisis that started many years ago at the ANC-led City of Ekurhuleni has reached breaking point with persistent electricity outages affecting areas all the way from Nigel to Germiston, leaving residents to freeze in the dark for prolonged periods.

The Ekurhuleni metro, by its own admissions, suffers more than 1500 unplanned outages a day, overwhelming its limited technical staff and leaving whole areas and sometimes whole towns without power for days on end.

Daveyton

On Friday alone, much of Daveyton was subjected to a devastatingly disruptive power outage.

Springs

In February, a substation burnt to the ground after years of warnings to the City about its state of disrepair, leaving all of the factories in New Era, Springs without power for weeks.

Germiston

In the industrial hub of Wadeville in Germiston, persistent outages over the past year have brought production to a halt, making it impossible for workers to do their jobs.

Large swathes were without power in early June after the staff went on a go-slow and switched off areas as a result of the metros failure to pay its overtime bills.

Kempton Park

Kempton Park has also been subjected to power outages for years, and last June a fire at the Glen Marais substation resulted in a 6 day outage, while power outages are a weekly occurrence in Ward 92.

Further underlying factors unearthed by the Democratic Alliance (DA) include poor contractor management, winning bidders subcontracting out their work in violation of the law, electricity substations that are in a critical condition from not being upgraded nor maintained and area managers who rarely go out on site to assist their teams.

Problems also stem from underlying issues like underspending of budgets on priority repair and maintenance work, no monitoring system for overtime work done, poor HR systems to manage non-performing employees, and major electricity cables that are not repaired years after being logged as defective.

The City of Ekurhuleni’s energy staff are stretched thinly, and having to work overtime constantly to attend to its ailing power grid.

The City also has a bloated management structure at the expense of service delivery.

Residents are being taxed heavily but staff is not hired to fulfill the municipality’s constitutional obligations.

The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) estimates that municipalities on average spend 10% of their salary budgets on staff for energy repairs, maintenance and reticulation, but Ekurhuleni spends just 3,7% on this critical function and constitutional obligation.

The City of Ekurhuleni recently admitted in Parliament to having been engaged in load shedding practices despite receiving sufficient supply from Eskom.

In some instances the DA has established that the claims of cable theft by the metro are used as a cover up for the fact that there has been a lack of maintenance on high-voltage cables.

Every hour of outage in the City of Ekurhuleni is estimated to cost R1,6-billion in lost economic output and hundreds of thousands of jobs are being placed at risk by a municipality that is failing to meet its constitutional obligations.

In order to address this crisis, the DA proposes that:

  • The standby team schedule for energy outages be shared on a weekly basis to all councillors.
  • There should be rapid improvement of communication on outages, such as estimated restore times being communicated within 4 hours of the outage being reported.
  • The same communication should be shared with the call centre management and on social media.
  • A special task team should be convened, inclusive of national government departments to investigate properties that are overloading the network, because of overcrowding and illegal connections.
  • In order to assist with the illegal connections, the city should request assistance from the police and army to protect officials, city and private property. The Metro should also investigate solutions toprovide electricity or alternative energy sources to areas with illegal connections.
  • All vacant posts should be filled in the energy reticulation department with an active shift-rotation system. This will reduce the amount of overtime required by the department and it will be a more effective way to spend the energy budget.
  • A schedule should be published for energy rotational load shedding to allow businesses and residents to plan in advance.
  • The metro should share the budget and accurate progress reports on all projects for energy infrastructure to date and allow regular, in-person oversight visits to projects by councillors.
  • Considering that the City of Ekurhuleni is the industrial heartland of Gauteng, thousands of jobs are being placed at risk by a municipality that is failing to meet its constitutional obligations.

When Eskom reintroduces load shedding to Gauteng, it will further exacerbate Ekurhuleni’s pending economic collapse.

The DA calls on the residents of Ekurhuleni to support its “Take Back Your Power campaign” by signing the below petition to pressurise the ANC-led City of Ekurhuleni to deliver a more acceptable electricity service to its residents.

https://petitions.da.org.za/p/takebackyourpower

 

Issued by The DA

department-of-education

Dates for phased reopening of schools

The Department of Basic Education has gazetted regulations surrounding schools operating during Covid-19, including dates for the phased return of pupils, as well as guidelines for parents who will not be sending their children back.

Dates for phased reopening

According to new regulations, released on Tuesday:

Grades R, 1, 2, 3, 6, 10 and 11 will be able to return to school from 6 July.

  • Schools catering for pupils with severe intellectual disabilities (SID) will also be able to welcome Grades 1, 2, 3 and final-year pupils from this date.
  • Schools with pupils with severe and profound intellectual disabilities (LSPID) will allow years 1-3 to return.
  • Autistic pupils below the age of 13, as well as final-year students who are 18 and above will also return on 6 July.

On 3 August 2020, Grades 4, 5, 8 and 9 will be able to return.

  • As well as first-year pupils in schools of skill, Grade 4s and 5s in SIDs and pupils above the age of 13 in schools catering for autistic learners. 

Hostels

Hostels are also allowed to open if they comply with minimum health, safety and social distancing requirements, and the department is notified.

The department will also be able to conduct an inspection once the hostel opens to verify this compliance.

Aftercare Facilities

Aftercare facilities are also allowed to reopen if they are compliant, however, school events like sport and cultural activities remain suspended.

Deviation from phased return

  • The regulations allow for schools to deviate from this phased return with regard to specific grades or dates if the school is compliant with the minimum health, safety and social distancing measurements and, in the case of a public school, has all Covid-19 essentials in place, and the principal has notified the department.
  • Should the school not be compliant with the Covid-19 measures, the deviation from the phased return can be revoked and the school closed until it becomes compliant.

School attendance

  • Parents of pupils who will not return to school after the phased return will need to apply to the head of the Department of Basic Education, which can then exempt a child entirely, partially or conditionally from attending school if it is in their best interest.
  • According to the regulations, this is dependent on whether the parent has made an effort to ensure the child continues their schooling from home through learning materials supplied by the school
  • The parent will also have to comply with legal requirements concerning home education.

The link to the Gazette:

https://www.gov.za/sites/default/files/gcis_document/202006/43465gen343.pdf

Source: News24

COULD THE CIGARETTE BAN FORCE SOUTH AFRICA INTO A TAX INCREASE?

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni

The cigarette ban has, by many accounts, been a disastrous policy rolled out by the government. Whatever merits there are for limiting the sale of smokes, they have been mitigated by the numerous court challenges and communication fiascos that have dogged Parliament since tobacco was taken off the shelves.

However, with a billion-rand industry suddenly being brought to a crushing halt, there was always going to be consequences.

The cigarette ban has left an enormous tax-revenue hole, presenting the Treasury with a major headache.What’s more, Tito Mboweni has to deliver his emergency budget speech on Wednesday  and the finance minister might have to think about doing the unthinkable.

COULD THE CIGARETTE BAN FORCE SOUTH AFRICA INTO A TAX INCREASE?

Tax Justice South Africa are vocal critics of the prohibition on tobacco.

The group estimate that R35 million each day is being lost in tax revenue to the prolonged cigarette ban, a figure they say could pay the wages of 50 000 nurses.

Elaborate comparisons aside, they believe this loss of earnings could force many South Africans into making up for the losses via increased taxes elsewhere.

“Get ready to pay for the decision by the South African government to throw away over R3 billion in cigarette taxes. The tobacco ban during lockdown has diverted that money to criminals in illicit trade. Now decent South Africans are expected to plug the gap again…”  Tax Justice SA

Meanwhile, Charles de Wet, PricewaterhouseCoopers partner, told Business Insider that the government may want to target another increase to the fuel levy, or they could even go for a ‘wealth tax’ option, which would ask the highest earners in South Africa to part with a few more of their funds.

Until Tito Mboweni takes to the podium and reveals what he’s got in his magic red folder, nobody can say for sure what direction the finance minister will take us in. He’s walking the narrowest of all tightropes, and will be under pressure to both toe the party line and announce radical changes that can bolster our ailing economy.

But with an estimated 10 million smokers in South Africa, a bustling industry, controversial yet profitable, is now bleeding money.

If we can’t get cigarettes back, Mboweni may have to take drastic steps to raise capital elsewhere.

Source: Thesouthafrican / Tom Head

Photo Credit: Gallo Images

New projects in SA, including a Spacehub and a New City

The inaugural Sustainable Infrastructure Development Symposium South Africa (Sidssa) was launched on Tuesday (23 June) as part of a major government initiative to encourage development in the country.

As part of the government’s presentation, it outlined a number of ‘catalytic projects’ which provide a ‘snapshot of its ambition’ as well as its priorities and projected impact.

The Space Infrastructure Hub for National Development

The Space Infrastructure Hub will allow for the development of satellite infrastructure, satellite-based augmentation systems, and earth observation satellites.

“Domestic access to this type of infrastructure will reduce South Africa’s reliance on other countries for the type of information that these satellites can make available and is expected to reduce the time frames for collecting necessary data.

Government said that the proposed investment value of the project is R3.1 billion and the investment period is three years.

Over the three year period, the investment will on average support 4,695 jobs per year, of which a quarter will be in the informal economy, it said.

Broadband – Project Thobela

“Businesses and households are becoming increasingly reliant on the internet, and the Covid-19 pandemic has forced even more activity online.

“For an economy to benefit from the opportunities of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR), it needs to have access to affordable broadband,” government said.

Government said that the proposed investment value of the project is R9.8 billion and the investment period is seven years.

Over the seven-year period, investment in Project Thobela will on average support 6,553 job opportunities per year, of which just over a quarter will be in the informal economy, it said.

New City – The Greater Cornubia

The Greater Cornubia is a mixed-use and mixed-income development, which consists of industrial, commercial, residential and open spaces.

It is situated 25km from Durban’s CBD and 7km from King Shaka International Airport. The development will include 58,000 housing opportunities available to a wide range of income groups, and which will be provided by the public and private sectors.

The proposed investment value of the project is R25 billion and the investment period is 16 years (the project officially started in 2016).

“Over the first 10 years, investing in the Greater Cornubia will on average support 11,254 jobs per year, of which more than half (57%) will be for semi-skilled and low-skilled labour.”

Scheepersvlakte Citrus Farm

Scheepersvlakte is a greenfield citrus project, that will grow 516 hectares of citrus in the Kirkwood region in the Eastern Cape province.

“Once the farm is operational, it will create employment opportunities for farmworkers and for the downstream processing of fruit and nuts into other consumables.

The proposed investment value of the project is R122 million and the investment period is five years.

Mokolo Crocodile Water Augmentation Project (Phase 2A)

The MCWAP-2A will increase water supply in the Lephalale region, government said.

“In the case of the MCWAP-2A, we understand that the water will be used as a second source for the Medupi and Matimba Power Stations, and that it will also help to meet the growing demand for water in Lephalale Municipality.

The proposed investment value of the project is R12.4 billion and the investment period is five years.

 Source: BusinessTech

Photo Credit: Depositphoto

department-of-education

Gauteng school applications open this week

The 2021 applications for Grade 1 and 8 learners in Gauteng will commence on Thursday.

“I urge all parents and guardians to use the online registration process and apply during the specified application period. No late applications will be accommodated,” Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi said on Tuesday.

Parents of all learners that are currently in Grade R and/or Grade 7 must apply for admission of their children to Grade 1 or Grade 8 for the 2021 academic year by logging on to the Gauteng Department of Education’s Admissions Online Application platform at

www.gdeadmissions.gov.za.

Applications will open on Thursday at 8am and close on 25 July 2020 at midnight.

“To ensure access to applicants who are unable to apply from the comfort of their homes and/or offices, the department has identified 34 decentralised walk-in centres in different areas where applicants will be safely assisted to make applications.

“In addition, all District Offices and Head Office will serve as walk-in centres. A detailed list of decentralised walk-in centres with addresses and contact numbers are available on the department’s website and local media,” the department said.

All decentralised walk-in centres have been deep cleaned and sanitised. The centres will observe COVID-19 protocols aimed at preventing the spread of Coronavirus.

“All required documents must be submitted within seven days of making the application. This year, the department is introducing online uploading of documents through the Admissions Online Application System.

“Parents will therefore have a choice to either upload the documents online to one school, which means that other schools will manage to access those documents in the system. Alternatively, parents may submit hard copies of documents to all schools applied to,” the department said.

Parents can upload documents using any computer device, including smart phones.

The following documents must be submitted within seven days after making an application:

Grade 1

Parents Identity Document/ Passport

Child’s Birth Certificate

Child’s Clinic Card/ Proof of Immunization Proof of Residence

Grade 8

Parents Identity Document/ Passport

Child’s Birth Certificate

Child’s Latest Report Card

Proof of Residence

Parents urged to not visit schools

Parents have been urged to apply at their leisure and refrain from rushing to schools or walk-in centres when the system opens.

The principle of first come, first served will not be applied as a rule. There is, therefore, no need for any urgency to apply at 8am on 25 June 2020.

“So far, we are pleased with the success of the online application system and humbled by the overwhelming response by the people of Gauteng. The process has provided several cost-effective solutions.

“Automating services and moving away from human intervention has freed up manpower from other activities and enables better utilisation of human resources,” Lesufi said.

The department has appealed to parents to stay away from schools during this time, as schools cannot assist walk-in applicants due to the high risk of infection and spread of Coronavirus.

All schools will, as a safety precaution, make provisions for parents to drop documents off at an identified area at the school gate, away from class rooms and office space.

The 2018 Admissions Regulations and the Feeder Zone Regulations state that priority will be given to applicants who live in the school’s feeder zone, and closest to the school.

Parents are therefore urged to use the “Home” option to apply to a school that covers their home address.

The admissions criteria is linked to application options and ranked in the order outlined as follows:

Option 1: home – The parent’s home address is within the feeder zone and closest to school;

Option 2: sibling – The child has a sibling at the school applied to (not siblings in Grade 7 or 12); previous school – If the previous school is in the area/feeder zone of the high school that the parent wants to apply to (only applicable to Grade 8 applications);

Option 3: Work address within the feeder zone – the parent’s work address is in the feeder zone of the school;

Option 4: home address within 30km of the school – the parent’s home address is not in the school feeder zone, but within 30kms of the school;

Option 5: home address is beyond 30km of the school – the parent’s home address is not in the school feeder zone, but within 30kms of the school.

SAnews.gov.za

GARLIC PORK CHOPS IN CREAMY MUSHROOM SAUCE

Ingredients:

4 pork chops, bone-in or boneless (about 1-inch thick)

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon garlic powder

Salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

 

For the mushroom sauce

1 cup sliced brown mushrooms

4-5 garlic cloves, crushed

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1/2 cup (125ml) chicken broth

1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. To make the garlic pork chops: Combine paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Pat the pork chops dry with kitchen paper then season generously with the spice mix. Heat olive oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high until butter is melted.
  2. Sear the pork chops for 3-5 minutes per side until well browned on both sides. Transfer the pork chops to a warm plate and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add the mushrooms and stir fry until golden brown, scraping up any bits leftover from the chops.
  4. Add garlic, parsley and Italian seasoning then stir fry for another 30 seconds before pouring in the broth. Add the cream, give a good stir then allow simmering for 3-4 minutes until slightly thickened and adjust seasoning if needed.
  5. Place pork chops and their juices back into the sauce and allow to simmer for 2-3 minutes, or until the pork chops are cooked to your liking.

Garnish with remaining fresh parsley and serve the garlic pork chops in creamy mushroom sauce immediately with cauliflower rice, zucchini noodles, or pasta. Enjoy!

 

Source: eatwell101.com

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