Cartoons – Zapiro – Mail & Guardian Online: The smart news source

Cartoons – Zapiro – Mail & Guardian Online: The smart news source.

Mugabe in Singapore hospital Zapiro

Zapiro's take on Mugabe's illness

Funny as always…and true ūüėÄ

 

Advertisements

The missing 368,628 tonnes oil South Africa imported from Iran

There were some raised eyebrows recently when customs figures revealed that South Africa was still importing oil (417,000 during February) from Iran in spite of sanctions against that country.

Sasol took responsibility for some 12,000 barrels per day during January. Engen South Africa, which is owned by Petronas Malaysia, did not.

Reuters reported that Engen South Africa claimed that the company had halted oil imports from Iran. When exactly this happened, is unclear. They did not want to comment. Petronas indicated that their Engen unit stopped imports in March of last year. Engen, while not contradicting the statement, also did not confirm it. The messages are mixed.

I have to say this: the numbers don’t tally up. Either somebody is telling half-truths or somebody (and I suspect it could be more than a single somebody) is not owning up!¬†Let’s calculate:

Of the 417,000 tonnes of oil imported from Iran, how much

South Africa Iran - Oil still important.

Other than Sasol, nobody is owning up for the large amount of oil imported by South Africa from Iran.

did Sasol buy?

Sasol said they imported only 12,000 barrels per day, right? A barrel weighs 139kg, or 0.139 tonnes. February had 29 days and I assume that their ‘per day’ includes weekends, high days and holidays.¬†So the sum would be:

Number of barrels x tonnes x days = total monthly import.

12,000 x 0.139 x 29 = 48,372 tonnes.

So WHO imported the remaining 368,628 tonnes?

That is a whole lot of oil, and it sure as heck got delivered somewhere!

  • Petronas said it was not them. Engen does not say anything. I am not sure I believe them. My suspicion is that they are looking at stopping imports, but haven’t made a final decision .
  • Sasol could be importing more than they claim but, even if they did, it would not be anywhere near the missing 368,628 tonnes!
  • Chevron I believe is innocent. They are US-owned and won’t violate US sanctions. The repercussions would be too severe.
  • There seems to be confirmation that BP is not the culprit either.
  • Shell..well now, Shell is a bit of a dark horse. They have not breathed a word. In fact, they refuse to comment. No answer is an answer too.

A lack of political will

I believe there is a lack of political will to support the US and EU sanctions against Iran.¬†South Africa is notoriously bad at taking a stand. They usually end up dancing around issues. Think of Zimbabwe, Lybia etc. There really is no political pressure from our government on Engen, Shell, Sasol and whoeverelse. Things might change during May this year when Energy Minister¬†Dipuo Peters¬†is set to finally respond to the US in terms of implementing sanctions against Iran. There is a good chance she won’t. As I explained in my¬†previous blog¬†, South Africa and Iran are bedfellows in at least two joint ventures and have been supplying arms to Teheran in spite of the embargo on weapons – an embargo South Africa had agreed to.

In the mean time, this blogger is waiting for the March customs figures to be released. Hopefully the amount of oil imported by South Africa from Iran, will be a round zero.

Also read:

http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=168894

UPDATE 1-Petronas S.Africa unit Engen ends Iran crude imports | Reuters.

Stop 2010 World Cup Animal Sacrifice More than Just Another Petition

Note: For those who have not been following the story, please see: https://thewordwright.wordpress.com/2009/10/25/2010-soccer-world-cup-animal-sacrifice-planned/

A week ago, I felt as though mine would be the only voice screaming to FIFA and the South African 2010 Soccer World Cup Local Organising Committee to disallow the animal sacrifices planned by the so-called traditional leaders here in honour of the event. Minutes within launching the petition (http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Stop-2010-World-Cup-Animal-Sacrifice) on the Care2 network though, it became apparent that I was wrong – other voices were joining mine from right across the world.

The chorus grew rapidly and is but a few voices short of the 2,000 signatory milestone.  Judging by the overwhelming public response, 10,000 signatures are within reach! A month and a day remains before the self-imposed deadline for submitting the Stop South Africa from Sacrificing Animals at 2010 Soccer World Cup petition to the FIFA Executive Committee.

Driving towards success in the mean time ….

To improve our chances for success in stopping South Africa from sacrificing animals for the 2010 Soccer World Cup, we have to manage our drive as a carefully orchestrated CAMPAIGN. Unless we do that, we will probably be brushed off and ignored.

We figured that a really good target would be each and every one of the 2010 World Cup Sponsors and Partners – both locally and abroad.

The 2010 World Cup Sponsors are:

  • Budweiser
  • Continental
  • MTN
  • McDonalds
  • Satyam
  • Castrol

The FIFA Partners are:

  • Adidas
  • Coca Cola
  • Sony
  • Hyandai
  • Visa
  • Emirates

The FIFA South Africa Partners are:

  • BP
  • Neoafrica
  • Telkom
  • FNB
  • Prasa

Next week I will be sending an email to the Board of each of these sponsors and partners. In brief the email will contain:

  • a link to the Reuters article which broke the news of the impending sacrifices -http://uk.reuters.com/article/idUKLN24914120091023, and
  • a link to the Stop 2010 World Cup Animal Sacrifice petition on the Care2 network

We will also be asking them, as sponsors / partners of FIFA and the 2010 Soccer World Cup, whether they agree with the proposed sacrifices of animals to honour the event. Naturally I will remind them that should the sacrifices happen, they will by virtue of their presence at the 2010 World Cup, be viewed as in support of this abhorrent practice.

Their responses will be duly noted both here and on the Care2 Network Site.

Once the petition is submitted …

Do we sit an wait for a response, hoping that someone somewhere in the great rambling FIFA organisation will send us some sort of an acknowledgement or perhaps even go to the trouble of discussing the matter with their South African ‘leg’?

This kind of tack would be downright naive.

The high level plan of action is thus, that over and above submitting the most crucial document in the campaign (namely the petition) to the FIFA Executive Committee, we will be sending copies of this petition to the FIFA CEO, the Chairman of the South African 2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee, and the 2010 World Cup Sponsors and Partners.

To ensure that we prevent the ‘out of sight out of mind’ trap, we will be asking supporters of the petition (those that are prepared to remain involved for a while longer) to send a pre-formulated email message to all the above organisations on a daily basis. Email addresses will be supplied.

Right now…

Securing as many signatures as possible is of paramount importance. If you have not done so yet, please sign and ask others to do the same. The petition is located at http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Stop-2010-World-Cup-Animal-Sacrifice.

Thank you ūüôā

Shock. Limited Animal Sacrifices took place at 2010 World Cup Stadium sod turning ceremonies

HUH? ¬†LIMITED? When I caught sight of an IOL article (http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=13&art_id=vn20091028124741514C399059) this morning that was originally released by the Cape Argus on October 28, that was my first though…confusion growing with each subsequent paragraph I read.

The article reported on South Africa’s 2010 Soccer World Cup Animal Slaughter Plan and¬†the sacrifices that were already performed (between 2005 and 2007, I assume) during various sod turning ceremonies. Ostensibly the sacrifices were made to bless (or is that Bless in Blood) the construction of the sites where new stadiums for the 2010 Soccer World Cup were to be erected.

Naturally those that approved these sod turning ceremony slaughters are quick to defend their decisions. For instance: Pieter Cronje, who is spokesman for the City of Cape Town, (one of the cities where the 2010 Soccer World Cup will be played) told the Cape Argus that:

“There was a blessing and limited sacrifice ceremony on the stadium site before the start of construction.¬†This was done under the appropriate supervision of law enforcement and city health officials.¬†There was also an inter-denominational blessing at the sod-turning ceremony for the stadium by the premier and mayor at the time”

What a load of RUBBISH. Here is my take ….

ONE

Considering that they approved BLESS in BLOOD once before, there is no reason for them not to approve the proposed 2010 Soccer World Cup animal slaughter. In fact, they created a precedent!

TWO

LIMITED sacrifice? I am sorry, but I do not understand that term.  Does LIMITED  mean play-play sacrifice? Nope, not likely. Or does it mean that only a half a cow was sacrificed? Nope, not doable. Or does it mean that a smaller animal Рsome poor hapless goat, or lamb or chicken Рwas gleefully sent into the hereafter in order to BLESS in BLOOD a 2010 Soccer World Cup venue and a sport where blood really has no role to play? Or does limited mean that the animal is kinda dead or kinda alive after having been LIMITED sacrificed? I have no idea. Do you?

THREE

They try to make it sound all controlled and harmless by being quick to point out that the Bless in Blood sacrifices at the construction sites of the 2010 Soccer World Cup sod turning ceremonies were done “under the appropriate supervision of law enforcement and city health officials“. This includes South Africa’s N SPCA by the way.

Oh, that is just great. Sarcasm intended.

So, the SPCA supervises the killing of innocent, healthy animals instead of preventing this cruelty. (When last I checked, the role of an animal cruelty prevention agency was Preventing Cruelty. That is what the P and C in SPCA are meant to stand for. ) But then, in South Africa SPCA may be the abbreviation for Society for the Perpetuation of Cultural Animal killings. Anything is possible. If you don’t believe me, have a look at their media statement in which they make it abundantly clear that they WILL be supporting the proposed BLESS in BLOOD sacrifices to inaugurate each of the 10 FIFA Soccer World Cup Stadiums.

“The N SPCA position is respectful and supportive towards cultural and traditional practices,” said the statement.¬†“Welfare standards are paramount and these include issues such as transportation of animals, holding facilities, the manner of handling, plus the method of slaughter.¬†The N SPCA wishes to give input on this issue to all relevant parties, including to the traditional leaders who made the announcement on this issue.”

Their words, not mine. All I can say is SHAME on you N SPCA. My monthly contributions will now be made to Wet Nose instead!

FOUR

Naturally Cronje was also quick to add that there was also an inter-denominational blessing at the City of Capetown sod-turning ceremony (presided¬†over by both the premier and the mayor, just by the way). Oh, how nice…..!

Double HUH? Am I missing something?

Why were the cultural killers not included under INTERDENOMINATIONAL blanket? Is that not what interdemoninational implies? Or are we dealing with yet another populist move on the part of the powers that be, pandering to a massive portion (80%) of the South African population considered to be above everything – even above interdenominational? (Bear in mind that these animal slaughtering people are mostly practicing Christians, so it is not a case of them belonging to some strange ancient religion. This makes what they are doing an insult to Christians all over the world.)

Bet you those who fell¬†within¬†the ambit of interdenominational did not kill to bless the 2010 Soccer World Cup stadiums though. And perhaps that is why these so-called ‘traditional’ African Style guys and gals needed and wanted to be in a class of their own. And they ARE. A real killer crowd.

LET US STOP THIS

Please sign the petition! And ask as many people as you possibly can to sign and spread the word.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Stop-2010-World-Cup-Animal-Sacrifice

The petition IS doing well. 1,313 signatures within four-and-a-half days. We need many, many more though! The petition will be handed to the FIFA Executive Committee and the South African 2010 World Cup Organising Committee at the end of November. Your contribution is and would be HIGHLY appreciated! Thank you ūüôā

The SPCA, South African Law, the 2010 World Cup and the Planned Sacrifice of Animals

When President Jacob Zuma won the South African Presidential elections, he too was

Blessed

in

BLOOD

Just in case you have not heard the story, yet:

South African¬†‚Äėtraditional leaders‚Äô intend performing¬†ritual animal slaughters in order to bless the Soccer Football Stadiums to be used during the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup.¬†Zolani Mkiva, chairman of the Makhonya Royal Trust, said the tournament has to to be blessed in true ‚ÄúAfrican style‚ÄĚ and that they are going to slaughter cows in sacrifice¬†at each of the 10 stadiums to be used for the event.

Any reasonable person will immediately think: Surely this can be prevented. After all, South Africa does have Animal Protection Laws and an N SPCA. You are right if that is your response Рon the latter part of your thought anyway. BUT, as I am about to explain, NOT  on the former part. Here is why.

 

The SPCA

When Reuters broke the news, the N SPCA of South Africa made it clear that they will not prevent or oppose the animal slaughter / sacrifice planned in honour of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. In a very politically correct media statement, they indicated that they are

“respectful and supportive towards cultural and traditional practices”

and that

“the N SPCA stresses that its role will not be to preach or dictate but to act in a welfare liaison capacity”

A cop-out if ever I heard one!

The N SPCA has a history of allowing these kinds of things to go ahead. For instance, when Jacob Zuma became president of South Africa earlier this year, they endorsed (YES, endorsed) the slaughter / sacrifice of 25 Cows to bless Jacob Zuma’s newly acquired President-ship. (See¬†http://iluvsa.blogspot.com/2009/06/25-cows-to-die-for-zuma.html and¬†http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/africa/news/article_1480885.php/Zuma_party_rolls_on_25_cows_face_the_chop_for_village_feast) Bear in mind that these slaughters will have been done in the TRUE AFRICAN way….

Don’t expect any support¬†against the 2010 Soccer World Cup animal slaughter / sacrifice from¬†the N SPCA

 

South African Law

Sure! South Africa DOES have laws governing the treatment of animals Рabout 40 of them Рand that does not include the many bylaws passed governing our behaviour and conduct towards animals. We also have a Consitution. A Consitution that allows religious freedom INCLUDING, in this instance, slaughtering animals for religious purposes and, by the looks of it, to BLESS the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

The law is extremely vague as the humane-ness of such killings, saying that it should be done in – and I quote:

” in a humane way as is reasonable within the particular religious or cultural values of the person effecting the slaughter and subject to the requirements of the SPCA.”
Killing tethered – their legs are bound together and they are flipped on their sides – bulls with bare hands (see yesterday’s blog:¬†https://thewordwright.wordpress.com/2009/10/26/2010-soccer-world-cup-animal-slaughter-just-the-tip-of-the-iceberg/) and slitting (although HACKING would be a better description) fully conscious cows’ throats, leaving them to slowly bleed to death (see¬†https://thewordwright.wordpress.com/2009/10/25/2010-soccer-world-cup-animal-sacrifice-planned/)¬†are perfectly REASONABLE and ACCEPTABLE religious and cultural values and not contrary to the social standards of the bulk of the population in South Africa.
Don’t expect any ¬†protection against the 2010 Soccer World Cup animal slaughter / sacrifice under South African Law

 

What now?

 

Stopping the proposed, torturous deaths of the animals intended for sacrifice in honour of the 2010 Soccer World Cup is going to be NO easy matter! I started a petition two days ago to try and rally as much support as I can from people across the world. Please sign this petition if you disagree with animal sacrifice: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Stop-2010-World-Cup-Animal-Sacrifice.
So far we have 327 signatures. The target is 50,000. Your support in terms of creating awareness among friends, colleagues etc will go a long way towards achieving the targeted number! The petition will be submitted to the FIFA Executive Committee and 2010 Soccer World Cup Organising Committee of South Africa. I am also busy rallying support from Animal Rights Organisations across the world and approaching the media to solicit additional support. I am of the conviction that if sufficient pressure can be brought to bear, the animal sacrifice planned by South Africa to celebrate and bless the 2010 Soccer World Cup can and will be stopped.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2010 Soccer World Cup Animal Slaughter – Just The Tip Of The Iceberg

Happy slaughter ritual participants

After writing the blog (https://thewordwright.wordpress.com/2009/10/25/2010-soccer-world-cup-animal-sacrifice-planned/) yesterday on the planned ritual slaying of cows by South Africa in lieu of the 2010 Soccer World Cup, a few things kept lingering in my mind. So, I decided to put them in writing today:

One: The bloodthirsty throat slitting – or rather throat hacking – of sacrificial cows are not the worst ceremonies these animals are subjected to in this country. There are some rituals where a bull would be killed with bare hands (obviously the poor animal would be tied down). This involves gouging out his eyes, tongue, testicles and tearing his throat open. As you can imagine the latter takes a while to achieve. Cattle hide is rather tough. And YES. These heinous acts are all perpetrated to celebrate spirituality! ???????

Two: The SPCA is suddenly being referred to as if they could be the potential saviours of cows while, in real every day South African life, they – in a s far as I know – NEVER get involved with any of the so-called ‘cultural’ animal killings. On the one hand, it simply would not be politically correct. (And I am saying the latter with a good measure of sarcasm.) On the other hand, and in all fairness, it could also be very dangerous for the inspectors to try this. Chances are good that the gathering could turn on them – and this could end up in grievous bodily harm or even death. Africa is not for the fainthearted. (No, I am not exaggerating – read the SA newspapers)

Three: The number of  cows earmarked for death by suffering to celebrate the 2010 Soccer World Cup is, compared to the number of cow (and bull and goat and chicken) sacrifices in South Africa,  like a single cup of water out of a great big seething cesspool of a dam.  When you take all of Africa into account, the dam becomes a polluted ocean.

The petition (http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Stop-2010-World-Cup-Animal-Sacrifice) I launched on Saturday night (GMT+2) in an attempt to stop the ritual killing of cows at each of the ten stadiums to be used for the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup is standing at 195 signatories at the time of this writing. We are still 49,805 signatures away from our target.

The petition will be submitted to the FIFA Executive committee and the South African 2010 FIFA World Cup Local Organising Committee.  I believe that if we have enough support, if the media gives the matter sufficient attention and if animal rights organisations internationally endorse the campaign against the planned 2010 World Cup Animal Sacrifice Rituals, it can be stopped.

For now it is work in progress.

The An Yue Jiang sets sail from Luanda, Angola

It is no small victory for those in Zimbabwe and in the rest of the world who have been watching the weapon bearing An Yue Jiang with bated breath. It is also no small victory for the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), whose members ‚Äď in a display of solidarity ‚Äď refused to unload the deadly arms shipment from China, both in Angola and South Africa. It is suspected that the weapons ordered by the Mugabe regime, were intended to support his re-election during the presidential runoff campaign.

The ITUC (International Trade Union Confederation) and the ITF (International Taekwon-Do Federation), who played an active role in preventing the weapons from reaching Zimbabwe from the time that Noseweek broke the story some three weeks ago, remained in close touch with the Port Workers Union in Angola, who monitored all movements to and from the An Yue Jiang since it docked in Luanda. The Port Workers Union verified that only construction materials (cement etc.) destined for Angola were offloaded from the An Yue Jiang.

In their press statement, the International Taekwon-Do Federation told reporters that, under the watchful eye of Angolan Police, the An Yue Jiang refuelled, took on some supplies and set sail, with its controversial arms cargo still on board: destination China.

The International Taekwon-Do Federation also told the media that they will keep a watch on the movements of the ship and provide an update on its whereabouts later today.