Dear Editor

Making the hit parade
It was good to learn that the Kebble “hit-men” failed to get you.
Errol Friedmann
Meridien Group, Cape Town

Noseweek’s editor was on the late tycoon’s hit list. The above letter and the similarly supportive notes below are selected from the many kind notes received. Thank you. Ed.

I suppose one should see being on a Kebble hit list as a compliment, but I’m pleased nothing came of it!
Martin Plaut
Africa Editor, BBC, Bush House, London

I see you’ve brought new meaning to the phrase “making the list”.
By email

Congratulations! By being on Kebble’s hit list, your credibility has just shot up by 300%. This is better than winning the Pulitzer!
Mousy Mandarin
Cape Town 

I’m really really glad that you are safe from the madness around us!
Sun Valley

The above are just some of the witty and supportive messages received after the news broke that I had been amongst those on the Kebble hit list. Thank you all!Ed.

No escape for Investec
Your editorial about Investec (nose130) was superb. My wife Glenda and I thank you for vindicating us. We’re just getting started: next stop, the Constitutional Court. No-one is above the law. We will name and shame them.
Chad Thomas

Van Staden deeply missed
Raymond van Staden (“The spy who went in too deep”, nose129) was a colleague and friend and is sadly missed. The actions of the parties as described in your article in the days after his death are disgusting and horrendous. I sincerely hope that they are all brought to book. As for the sanctity of brotherhood – no comment!
Mike Irving
By email

Congratulations on a fine piece of investigative journalism on the looting of private investigator Raymond van Staden’s estate immediately after his tragic death.

Your report has caused many ripples in the security industry. I am certain Raymond would loudly applaud your skills in revealing the disgusting behaviour of certain family members, colleagues, employees and a former girlfriend. Particularly distressing is that so many people in the security industry are apparently not to be trusted.  Do they loot their clients’ desks as well? One can only hope that the police actually do their job and that justice will prevail. I also hope that SARS has taken note of the large amounts of foreign exchange allegedly looted by a Cape Town financial advisor. (That photograph of her should have been on your cover.)

Why no ponzi action?
I have been wondering why no further news ever surfaces regarding ponzi masters Tannenbaum and Rees, the perpetrators of one the biggest scams ever to hit this country. I’m truly amazed at the fact that nothing has been heard about what progress, if any, is being made in this case. No meeting of creditors has been held and the investors are simply being kept in the dark whilst T and R appear (on the surface anyway) to be leading “normal” lives – it’s preposterous.

Some investors have been subpoenaed to appear before the Master and a bank of attorneys in Johannesburg is attempting to recover all monies paid to them regardless of whether investors lost or made money. This smacks of desperation as they try and recover whatever they possibly can in order to continue drawing their fees. For doing what exactly?
Ponzi Pooper
Cape Town

No audit on World Cup?
Congratulations on your report on what some of the top Fifa officials are up to (nose128) – even if it’s cold comfort to know that such goings-on occur throughout the world and not just in SA.

Will we ever be told the truth about how much money the World Cup brought into SA and how much left the country? How much did it – will it – really cost the taxpayer? I believe that many in the hospitality industry lost a lot of money, upgrading hotels and guest houses which were fully booked by Fifa and then cancelled shortly before the tournament, when they had no chance of finding other guests.

If this was the USA, might they all have got together and instituted an action for damages?
John Nugent

I have an account with Vodaphone/Vodacom. For a long time now I have been experiencing ridiculous numbers of dropped calls or inability to get a signal. Many of my colleagues have the same problems, which are also reflected in the recent correspondence in the press between Trevor Noah and the CEO of Vodacom.
I started corresponding with Vodaphone about this in late May. After some thirty or more emails and calls to the so-called customer care help line, all I got was an offer to test my signal at home. All attempts to escalate the complaint got nowhere.

Whatever technology Vodacom is using to measure dropped calls (which I believe is part of their license condition) somehow (and not surprisingly) it measures perhaps 1% of the REAL number of dropped calls I suffer. I have offered to provide an affidavit to this effect, and for somebody from Vodacom to accompany me for a few hours to witness this – again to no avail. I finally got put through to Faizel Cassim, the head of the Vodacom escalation department. All he would say was that Vodacom was Icasa compliant, and my own experience was irrelevant.

I need my cellphone for my work and spend a lot on it a month. I believe Vodacom has oversold their licensed bandwidth and the SA public are paying for this – in my case I estimate about R500/month for at least the last few months. I suggested to Mr Cassim that all I wanted was an admission by Vodacom that their bandwidth was oversubscribed and a refund of the cost to me for the last few months.  He stated quite emphatically that that would not be possible.

I’m now escalating this to Icasa, in accordance with their guidelines, and trust they will do an independent investigation. I believe they will find that wholesale fraud is being perpetrated on South Africans, rich and poor.
Dr Richard Doyle
Greenside, Johannesburg

Don’t lose heart noseweek!
Thank you to the noseweek team for persisting against impossible odds. Thank you for uncovering the dangerous truth of so much nasty behaviour among our so-called social, political and business “leadership” and their armies of cronies and connections. Thank you for being so strong in the common folk’s defence.

My concern is that the clever barbarism seems to grow new heads as the old are chopped off, and that the noseweek team might eventually lose heart. I wonder how you stay “clear” amidst the endless poison that you have to swim in – because even as I thank God for your latest exposé, I literally grow ill. It takes me hours, even days, to recover hope for our “civilization”. I am tempted to stop, but have decided to continue reading, in solidarity, and in order to stay alert to the dark side of our political, business and social reality.

But I’m wondering: would it be feasible to devote some pages to hopeful initiatives, or stories of positive change? Surely, noseweek could not exist unless there was a powerful and realistic ideal which drives it? It would be absolutely super to have this ideal revealed in examples in each edition.
Rob Small
Harfield Village, Cape Town

  • I’ve said it before: there’s a nose week in every month – you need the other three to recover. We are seriously considering doing the odd affirming piece, as you suggest. Meanwhile, we will not pretend we haven’t noticed what is going on.Ed.


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Submitted by : Simon Burrow of Ménerbes on 2010-08-26 17:50:59
Noseweek - don't hold back! Keep the flag flying. You are the positive note in this assault on everything we fought for. We don't need positive puff pieces. The 'new' media will being doing lots of that to fill their pages and keep their advertisers happy.
Submitted by : Pete Swanepoel of MONTCLAIR on 2010-08-26 11:38:23
Rob asks for nose to "devote some pages to hopeful initiatives, or stories of positive change" - I take the whole of noseweek, cover-to-cover as a shining example of a hopeful initiative. I think Rob answers himself when he adds: "noseweek could not exist unless there was a powerful and realistic ideal which drives it". Nose - and the people in it who bravely fight the thieves - are the positive stories. You go, nose!!

Editor's Note
Thank you Pete.
Mr. Nose would not do it without all of you; it's individuals like you and Rob that enhance that hope for a better tomorrow and hence keep us going.


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