|'What will happen to those people who live in informal settlements'|
Durban - An additional 100 ambulances will service KwaZulu-Natal within the next year, the provincial health department said on Tuesday.
Both private operators and the provincial Emergency Rescue Services (EMRS) were expanding their fleets and training up more staff.
KwaZulu-Natal health spokesperson Leon Mbangwa said that by May 2007 the department hoped to increase its fleet to 570 ambulances.
He said EMRS currently had 470 ambulances with 160 vehicles operational at any given time.
"At the moment our response time in rural areas is between 60 and 90 minutes. That's not good enough. We want to bring that to below 60 minutes," he said.
Two of the province's largest private operators are also expanding their service.
Netcare 911 spokesperson Chris Botha said six ambulances had been added to their service and they were considering further expansion.
ER24 spokesperson Neil Noble said that by the end of the year the company hoped to have 30 ambulances in use, including subcontracted services. The company will be opening a base in Pietermaritzburg in the next few months, he said.
"The problem is to get more trained staff," he added.
Mbangwa said the department had 65 people enrolled on a paramedics course starting in August.
|'This is a challenge to our intellectuals'|
Let's ignore the insular implications of re-naming our province as KwaZulu, and the implied ostracism of the non-Zulu inhabitants (black, brown and white) and let's also put aside the fact that the original San/Bushmen inhabitants of this area were massacred by the invading Nguni, who took over this region by right of conquest (the oldest permission in the world).
Let's just talk about what came first. This region was named Natal (in honour of Christmas Day) by Vasco da Gama around 1498, the Zulu nation (and thus the Zulu kingdom) was created out of one of many Nguni clans by the great Shaka (one of the greatest leaders in the world) in the early 1800s.
So the name Natal is about 300 years older than KwaZulu, and therefore fully entitled to be part of the heritage of this, now very diverse, province.
While the name KwaZulu excludes all non-Zulus, regardless of their contribution to this region, KwaZulu-Natal is inclusive, in line with the vision of another great man, Nelson Mandela.
King Goodwill Zwelithini has launched a campaign to drop Natal from the province's name
Government has welcomed the suggestion by Zwelithini to re-write the province's history but cautioned against interference with the province's KwaZulu-Natal Heritage Renewal Project. Zwelithini is concerned about how land deals between the Zulu Kings and colonial rulers were portrayed.
The signature collection for the name change will end in September on the day of the Reed Dance. It will then be handed to Parliament.
Zwelithini's campaign comes at a time when the Nhlapo Commission is hearing historical disputes on traditional leadership.
|The Bluff local came in from the Round of 96 as a wildcard and after a grueling week of competition, walked away US$ 15000 richer. Busting out in the final and combo-ing his opponent, Australian, Dayyan Neve, Ricky Basnett was carried up the beach like the hero he is. Now ranked at fifth on the WQS, we caught up with the new Mr Price Pro champion right after a champagne-drenched awards ceremony.|
Zag: Ricky, you told me about two months ago that you were going to win the Mr Price Pro, did you really believe you would win?
RB: I've been telling myself for about two or three months now that I'm gonna do it so I suppose if you keep telling yourself you're gonna do it, well, I guess it works.
Zag: How have your plans and tactics changed since you first started competing on the 'QS a few years back?
RB: These days I just take it easy before heats. No more parties until afterwards!
Zag: It's easy to be stoked with a result like this but it's even easier to get bummed out when you're not making it out of the first rounds in a contest. How do you plan on keeping your momentum throughout the rest of the year?
RB: I'm just gonna think about this win and keep thinking that I can do it.
Zag: You're the first South African to win in 28 years, is there any way you could possibly describe what you're feeling right now?
RB: Honestly Not! I really cannot describe it at all.
Zag: Any last words?
RB: Come to Joe Kool's! (raucous laughter) That's all I'll say. I'm gonna carry on for a few days!
Interview by Jarryd Smith
Durban, South Africa (Sunday 9 July), Its been twenty-eight years since a South African surfer first triumphed at the Mr Price Pro, formerly known as the Gunston 500, and today Ricky Basnett (Bluff), 20, won the Six Star World Qualifying Series (WQS) event for the first time, since South Africa’s legendary surfing hero, Shaun Tomson back in 1978.
On a day that will be etched into South African surfing history, Basnett who entered as a wildcard into the round of 96, defeated world number four on the WQS Dayyan Neve (Aus) with a total of 15.60 (out of 20.00) to Neve’s 10.50.
Kicking-off with an explosive frontside air-reverse to score 8.5 out of a possible ten points, followed by a hands-free aerial earning 7.17, Basnett left his opponent in a combination situation, a feat that would have made Tomson proud.
As the ocean went flat, Basnett began counting down the minutes before stepping onto the sand as the 2006 champion. Swarmed by friends and drenched in beer, Basnett held the South African flag high as he was carried up the beach above a sea of fans.
“I don’t know what is going through my mind right now, I’m more stoked than I could ever be. This tastes better than beer!” said Basnett absolutely shaking from adrenaline.
“I got those two waves in the beginning and then the ocean went flat. When I saw my friends on the beach with the South African flag and I could not really believe what was happening. I was just sitting out there counting down the time.”
Adding this victory to his stellar performance at the four-star WQS in Margaret River, Australia, where he finished second, Basnett has climbed to fifth on the ASP WQS ratings and is closer to realising his dream of qualifying for the World Championship Tour.
Despite posting the highest individual wave score of the entire contest, an excellent 9.63 (out of ten) against defeating world number 23 Troy Brooks (Aus) in the semi-finals, the ocean failed to provide for Neve in the final and the Australian was relegated to second place.
However, this result was as good as a victory for Neve who has reached three WQS finals this year and is now at number one on the WQS ratings.
“This result means everything to me. I’m trying really hard to make the WCT this year so I’m really happy to get another final, especially in a Six Star,” said Neve who was considering quitting the tour when he dropped to 116th on the WQS at the end of last year, before deciding to give it one last go in 2006.
“It’s not the best place to come second to a South African, but if I’d won back in Australia at my local beach, I know it would be the same, just the other way around. I’m stoked for Ricky, he deserved the win and he’s got his friends and family around to celebrate with.”
Also reaching the semi- finals at North beach today was former Mr Price Pro Champion Neco Padaratz (Brazil), who bowed out to Basnett, needing a 6.44. Taking off on a wave, realising it was not going to have the potential he was looking for, the Brazilian clapped his hands in applause of Basnett, impressing the crowd with his great display of sportsmanship.
South African’s Travis Logie (Durban) and Jordy Smith (Umbilo) made it as far as the quarterfinals, the two surfers finishing equal fifth, earning R14000 for their efforts. Logie was defeated by Brooks, while Smith’s hopes were dashed by Neve.
The Mr Price Pro junior men’s final saw Brandon Jackson (Durban North) successfully defend his Mr Price Pro Junior title over Jordy Smith (Umbilo), who was penalised for an interference.
Taking off on the same wave, Jackson heading left and Smith right, the two surfers met in the middle, Smith failing to make way for Jackson, which cost him the win.
Despite posting two 8.17 scores (out of a possible ten), Smith had his second ride halved, relegating him to second place while Jackson held onto first.
“You can never right-off Jordy, he’s won contests on interferences before”, said Jackson markedly pleased with his win. “Jordy’s won every contest this year but you can’t win them all and I’m just happy I could halt his run.”
Jackson posted two six-point scores for a package of tight off the top turns and, despite numerous attacks from Josh Redman (Umdloti) and Brandon Roberts (Cape Town), who finished third and fourth respectively, maintained his heat lead, earning R3000 for his efforts.
Smith earned R2000 and valuable ratings points, which will keep him at the top off the ASP Africa ratings. Disappointed with his error Smith said, “I just got unlucky I guess, and I’m going to learn from this for next time, but still, well done to Brandon for winning.”
|'I wish to urge the people of KwaZulu-Natal to focus their minds on the bigger issues'|
Major sponsors of the R17, 500 event include First National Bank, Robberg Seafoods, Wavecrest Distributors, Ocean Life, deBIS Fleet Management and Fish Bone Design Studio.
“The pros this year showed such maturity and camaraderie – more so than any other division. I experienced this in my drop knee semi-final where I surfed my best heat ever, there was no hassling we just shared waves amongst ourselves; it was an unreal atmosphere. On the last day Mother Nature came to the party and delivered very good surf so all in all this year’s event was fantastic,” said SABA Wedge Classic Organiser Wayne Craig.
Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown winner Alistair Taylor (Berea - Durban) once again put on a phenomenal display with Air-Roll-Spins to place second in the pro final behind Kruger. Mark Watts (Westville - Durban) was on form up until the final where the set waves eluded him; Watts placed third ahead of Mark Jucker (Port Elizabeth).
In the Drop Knee final Sacha Specker (CT) opened as the siren sounded with a 9-point ride and was untouchable for the remainder of the clash. Sascha Taljaard (Durban) tried to play catch up but finished as the runner up ahead of local star Sampi Kamffer (Plettenberg Bay). Former SABA Champion Vaughn Harris (Cape Town) took fourth.
The Junior final was the best of the day with excellent surf for the 20-minute showdown. Emile von Vollenhoven (Margate – KZN) put together the perfect combination of manoeuvres to out-score Jason Duvenage (Durban) who had a perfect ten under his belt for an invert air move. Josh Kleve (Cape Town) and James Jones (Durban) were hot in pursuit and finished third and fourth respectively.
The SABA Wedge Classic is also supported by Bitou tourism; they provided an exciting line up of activities on the beach for families to enjoy. Product sponsors include Red Bull, Reef Brazil, Arnette Sunglasses and Logic Magazine.
The SABA Wedge Classic is the fourth event on the national circuit which counts towards the crowning of the year end champions in the Pro, Boys, Juniors, Men, Women, Masters, Drop knee, Under 12 boys, Under 16 girls and Development divisions.
Wedge SABA Classic Results:
Ian Kruger (CT)
Alistair Taylor (Berea - Durban)
Mark Watts (Westville - Durban)
Mark Jucker (Port Elizabeth)
Zwelithini has asked a team of experts to explore whether the name should be changed to KwaZulu
Soothing sounds: A desperately worried Sheldon Vetter has come up with a novel way to meet the mounting medical costs of his sick baby - by offering his services as a pianist at dinner parties. Photo: Bongiwe Gumede, Daily News
|Blood test revealed every parent's nightmare|
|'I would rather earn the money than just ask'|
Over 300 local and international surfers have started taking on the waves for Mr Price Pro
|Public apathy surrounding diabetes is a major problem|
|'Diabetes is not a death sentence'|
Pitted against a host of international talent, Chantelle Rautenbach (Melkbosstrand), Sarah Maritz (Warner Beach), Sarah Baum (Warner Beach), Tarryn Chudleigh (Scarbourgh), Nicole Annels (Margate) and Telana Flanagan (East London) all advanced into the first round of money, the women’s round of 48 at Durban’s North Beach.
Leading the charge was National Junior team member Chantelle Rautenbach who, at 16, rose to the challenge of her first ever WQS event, posting the second highest individual wave score of the women’s contest so far, an 8.33 out of a possible ten points.
With a series of lightening fast snaps, finished off with a closeout re-entry, Rautenbach defeated the Japanese duo of Kaori Mayaguchi and Erina Taniguchi as well as South African Champion Penny Robarts (Somerset West).
“I’m so stoked because I got knocked out in Pro Junior event, so I’m just glad I made it through that last heat,” grinned Rautenbach. Twelve-year-old Sarah Baum, the youngest competitor in the even, turned heads in heat four when she advanced in second position behind French surfer Amandine Sanchez.
Defeating girls almost twice her age, including Papa Luana (Caribbean) and local surfer Lynne Mackey (Westville) Baum said, “That’s the first time I’ve made it through a heat in a pro event. I’m going to get some money so I’m stoked! I’ll try my hardest to make it through some more heats, but mainly I’m trying to go out there and just have fun.”
Another Warner Beach surfer to advance on Wednesday was multiple runner-up at the South African Championships, Sarah Maritz who took charge of heat five with a good five-point ride.
Maritz held onto the lead until the last few minutes when the feisty Juliana Quint (Brazil) managed to step into first place, defeating Maritz by less than a point. Both surfers advanced into the next round.
A round one victory from world-renowned Stephanie Gilmore (Aus) was no surprise, the Australian youngster defeating Telana Flanagan (East London), Bronwyn Coote (Durban) and Lindsay Brown (USA).
With a surfing style increasingly compared to some of the best male surfers in the world, Gilmore already has a World Championship Tour title to her credit, winning the Roxy Pro, Australia as a wildcard in 2005. Gilmore posted the highest individual wave and two wave heat total scores of the women’s event and could be a title contender at this year’s Mr Price Pro.
Others to advance were Jenny Quam (USA), Tais Almeida (BRZ), Juliana Quint (BRZ) and Kaori Mayaguchi (JPN). Top seeds enter the water for the women’s round of 48 at 11h10 am tomorrow (Thursday). The Mr Price Pro women’s division is a five star WQS event which holds a $25,000 (R172, 500) women’s prize-money purse and is one of the most prestigious events on the women WQS.
The defending Mr Price Pro champion is Melanie Bartels (Hawaii) who has returned to Durban to defend her title.
Results Womens Round of 60
Heat 1: Stephanie Gilmore (AUS); Telana Flanagan (EL)
Heat 2: Jenny Quam (USA); Nicole Annels (Margate)
Heat 3: Tais Almeida (BRA); Tarryn Chudleigh (CT)
Heat 4: Amandine Sanchez (FRA); Sarah Baum (Warner Beach)
Heat 5: Juliana Quint (BRA); Sarah Maritz (Warner Beach)
Heat 6: Chantelle Rautenbach (CT); Kaori Mayaguchi (JPN)
Eye of the Tiger was followed by Sushisan, Equal Images and Lion Tamer
Fashion trailblazers steal the show at Durban July
While horses and jockeys battled it out for the prestigious Durban July title, designers and models in their extravagant outfits had a race of their own - outshining the rest with the glitz and glamour of fashion.
Big hats, bold colours and dazzling accessories were the order of the day. It seems almost anything went this year, from outlandish head gear, to revealing, little numbers.
South Africa's diversity was not missed either, as traditional, indigenous wear and exotic attire were part of the mix.
The Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown at the Bay of Plenty on Friday, June 30 had all the ingredients required to make a spectacular event with perfect scores, upsets and world class bodyboarding performances.
The Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown is a South African Bodyboarding Association (SABA) sanctioned specialty contest boasting a R10, 000 prize purse which was shared amongst the five divisions - Pro, Drop Knee, U20, U15 and Ladies.
”The standard of riding at this event was really high and there were many big upsets. Standouts from a judging perspective were Ray Kean’s 10 point ride in the Drop Knee heat and Marc Lightley’s deep tube ride,” commented one of SABA’s most respected judges Sascha Taljaard.
One of the day’s biggest surprises came when North Beach local rider Robyn Sorenson (Berea) defeated hot shot Karla Costa-Taylor (Berea) who has a world title to her name. 2004 SA Women’s Bodyboarding Champion Sorenson carefully selected the best set waves and outscored her more experienced rival.
Former national team member Kamala Botha (La Lucia) placed third on an impressive comeback trail with Lize-Mari Ras (Durban North) putting on an improved performance to finish fourth.
Sihle Xaba : photo courtesy Vodacom
The Pro Final was off to a slow start with only three waves ridden during the first ten minutes. Alistair Taylor (Berea) sprang into action in the second half of the heat executing big reverse spins off the lip with style. Five times SA Bodyboarding Champion Philip Rodrigues (Durban North) replied with some strong rides which included a large air-roll-spin manoeuvre which earned him second place behind Taylor.
Less than two points separated national bodyboarding team member Wesley Fischer (Berea) and Sihle Xaba (Durban) who finished third and fourth respectively. “I was stoked with how the Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown went today - we had fun waves, great weather and an awesome atmosphere at the beach. It’s great to be back with Vodacom sponsoring our bodyboarding event at the Durban Beach Africa festival.
I was also thrilled to have won the final which was tough and hard fought, but that makes it all the better to have come out on top against such good riders,” commented Pro winner and current SABA Chairman Alistair Taylor.
The U20 Final proved to be an extremely close tussle with only one point separating first and third place. It was Charles Pass’s (Westville) moment in the sun when he squeezed past Michael Ostler and Stephen Jansens (Westville) to capture first place. Timothy Singh (Berea) showed promise with his fourth place finish.
The Drop Knee showdown also came down to the wire with the usual favourites fighting for first place. Wesley Fischer (Berea) pipped Sascha Taljaard (South Beach) to the winner’s post with his fluid backhand style. Rheinhardt du Toit (Richards Bay) and Ray Kean (Durban North) stayed in the running for the title but despite shining earlier in the event they finished third and fourth.
In the U15 Final Janneck Ferrandi (Umdloti) almost doubled the scores of his nearest competitor Adam Waites (Durban North) with Warren ven der Merwe (Richards Bay) placing third. Despite making the final, reigning South African Boy’s Bodyboarding Champion Ian Campbell (Morningside) had to leave the event early so that he did not miss his flight to Plettenberg Bay.
The Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown was run by the North Beach Bodyboarding Club.
The surf conditions deteriorated over the course of the day, competitors were greeted by 1.5-metre perfection in the morning which flattened out with the high tide and cross-shore winds making for tricky conditions during the finals.
The Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown was one of the water sports highlights at the 2006 Durban Beach Africa festival in association with Vodacom and the SABC; the festival runs from June 30 to July 9 along the Golden Mile. Vodacom has a reputation for being the Greatest Supporters of SA supporters.
The next stop on the SABA tour is the SABA Wedge Classic which runs from July 3 to July 7 at Plettenberg Bay.
Vodacom Bodyboarding Showdown Results
1. Alistair Taylor (Berea)
2. Philip Rodrigues (Durban North)
3. Wesley Fischer (Berea)
4. Sihle Xaba (Morningside)
1. Robyn Sorenson (Berea)
2. Karla Costa-Taylor (Berea)
3. Kamala Botha (La Lucia)
4. Lize-Mari Ras (Durban North)
Drop Knee Final
1. Wesley Fischer (Berea)
2. Sascha Taljaard (South Beach)
3. Rheinhardt du Toit (Richards Bay)
4. Ray Kean (Durban North)
1. Charles Pass (Westville)
2. Michael Ostler (Westville)
3. Stephen Janssens (Westville)
4. Timothy Singh (Berea)
1. Janneck Ferrandi (Umdloti)
2. Adam Waites (Durban North)
3. Warren ven der Merwe (Richards Bay)
4. Ian Campbell (Morningside)