Dear Editor

Berea monster must go

I found your report on the SCA's ruling allowing construction of the illegal Berea monster building to proceed, based on the metro council's dishonest submissions most distressing (nose230). In the original case Judge Esther Steyn delivered a totally correct judgment which the SCA should have upheld.

I only hope that there is still a way (Constitutional Court?) to hit this nest of vipers, trading as eThekweni Municipalty, with a successful challenge and see this illegal building reduced to rubble.

'Heather Feather'
Hyper by the Sea, Durban

Tragedy of lost training colleges

Reading your profile interview with UCT's new Vice-Chancellor, Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng (nose230), I was shocked by her almost flippant assessment of the ANC government's decision to close down the once-flourishing technical colleges, teacher colleges and nursing colleges: "Now we realise it was a mistake to shut them," she told Noseweek.

So that's it, is it? Just a little "mistake". Oops, sorry? It's not as if this little blapsie crashed a jumbo jet and killed 300 people.

The government's handling of this and other education matters has resulted in incalculable damage. It may not have killed people, but it has robbed millions of poor South Africans of the opportunity to reach their potential and enjoy decent lives. It's little short of a crime against humanity, and should be acknowledged as such.

There is no denying that the education available to black South Africans under white rule was unforgivably sub-standard in relation to what was provided for whites. But at least it sortof worked. I think it was Mamphela Ramphele (also a former Vice-Chancellor of UCT) who once observed that she was a product of Bantu Education, and she had not turned out so badly!

Top achievers like Ramphele, Wendy Luhabe, and Prof Phakeng might consider themselves fortunate to have been born early enough to grow up with the old education system. Had they been born a little later, they might not have been educated at all!

Ron McGregor
Cape Town

Crippled by statins

I have only recently come across the (nose220) article in by Dr David Klatzow in which he stated that "The jury is still out on whether cholesterol on its own is a health issue and, similarly, on whether statins have any value whatsoever."

Years ago a cardiologist put me on a high dose of Lipitor as my cholesterol level was 8. After a month I suffered severe muscle pain in the legs. A neurologist arranged by the cardiologist advised me to immediately stop taking Lipitor. To this day I am a cripple.

By email

Pam Herr 1949 - 2018

Pamela Herr died in Cape Town on 5 December. Finally Pam's age may be declared, something she resisted to the last. Indomitable spirit, impervious, troubleshooter, and very well organised is how I will remember her.

She was for many years a member of the Cape Town Chamber of Commerce, the Black Management Forum and Business and Professional Women.

Her mission in the Cape Town business community was education. In the early days she made it her business to research what the ANC's policies were likely to be when they came to power, and then ran workshops advising business on what to expect and how to adapt to the new era. Later, the Herr Organisation's many workshops and seminars brought a large variety of speakers well-versed in their subjects to society at large: Clem Sunter, Michael Bagraim, Tito Mboweni, and even Neal Donald Walsch from the USA, to name but a few.

It was indeed an honour to be associated and work with Pam for 31 years and I will miss her deeply.

Dorothy Guest
Cape Town

So will all at Noseweek miss her enthusiastic support, her box of goodies personally delivered every Christmas - and her always insightful letters that over the years appeared on these pages - the last in our May 2018 issue. Her husband, Mervin died in February 2000. She had no children. Friends were everything to her. - Ed.

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