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White workers begin strike in South Africa

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They are protesting against their exclusion from a company share scheme that benefits black workers.



More than 6,000 workers from the mainly white union – Solidarity – have begun a three-week strike in South Africa over their exclusion from a company share scheme by petrochemicals company Sasol.

Sasol recently introduced a new 10-year staff share scheme, Khanyisa phase 2, which excludes white workers and foreign nationals, something the union’s Dirk Hermann says is “causing racial tensions on the work floor”.

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However, Sasol has defended its decision, saying the scheme is designed to boost black ownership within the company, as part of the legislated Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) programme which seeks to redress historic inequalities in South Africa.

“The company is in the middle of a scheduled three-week maintenance programme. The union has chosen to go on strike at the same time to ensure that the effects of the strike are felt.”

Delays in the maintenance programme will cost the company huge sums of money and many of the union’s members are technical staff and artisans and are needed to carry out the maintenance programme at various sections of the plant.

The Khanyisa share scheme is the second employee related incentive scheme in recent years. In a previous scheme, known as Inzalo, all workers could take up share ownership.

Mr Hermann said the change is purely aimed at earning Saso, BEE status with the government and was not meant to benefit workers.

The strike action will include go-slows and lunchtime pickets, the union said.

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Motherland News

Nigerian President Buhari Warns Ballot box snatchers to value their lives

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President Muhammadu Buhari has warned those planning to snatch ballot boxes during the elections to desist or pay with his or her life if caught.



President Buhari who stated this at the opening session of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Caucus meeting in Abuja, on Monday, said that such act would be the last unlawful act the person will be brought to book.

Meanwhile, the governors of Imo, Rochas Okorocha and Ogun, Ibikunle Amosun were conspicuously absent at the meeting.

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Buhari who said he is confident that he has garnered enough supporters having gone round the country to campaign, urged party members to reassure their constituents to come out and vote on the rescheduled dates.

While urging party agents to watch out for the party interests at the polling units the president said that he has directed security agencies to identify hot spots and be ready to move should they suspect any attempts to cause problems by thugs across the country irrespective of party affiliations.

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– Vanguard

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Health & Lifestyle

DR Congo blame Unending Ebola Outbreak on Violence , Community Mistrust.

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DR Congo Ministry of Health spokesperson Jessica Ilunga has declared that violence and community mistrust have continued to hamper all efforts to control and end the fresh Ebola outbreak, which started Aug. 1.



Though according to the World Health Organization the number of new Ebola cases has dropped slightly in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as there are 33% fewer cases to date in February compared with the same time period in December per STAT’s Helen Branswell, but some experts warn Axios that there remain signs that this outbreak is far from over.

Meanwhile, some experts warn that, that doesn’t mean the world’s second-largest Ebola outbreak on record is yet under control, and in fact it could simply be moving to new areas of the sprawling country.

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Johns Hopkins’ public health expert Jennifer Nuzzo maintains there are several reasons people should continue to view this outbreak as a cause for concern.

However, Nuzzo said Congo needs more than money from the international community and the U.S. in particular. Safety concerns have largely caused the CDC to limit its Ebola experts to the capital city of Kinshasa, where some have returned after being evacuated during an uptick in election-related violence, Nuzzo added that Now is the time for the U.S. to send them into the field.

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