Following the news with passion

2008-08-15 00:00

What is your connection with The Witness and to Pietermaritzburg?

The Witness is part of my daily life as it keeps me well informed about what is unfolding in my city, the country and the world.

Where were you born, where did you grow up? What’s your educational background?

I was born in Edendale in Pietermaritzburg and grew up in Willowfountain. I matriculated at Zibukezulu High School in Imbali, then I enrolled and completed an MA degree in transportation at the then

University of Natal.

How do you spend your days?

I work for the Msunduzi Municipality as a transport engineer.

Do you write letters to other newspapers? Why do you choose The Witness?

I sometimes write to the Sunday Times. I regularly write to The Witness because it is the newspaper that I read daily so I can closely follow the debates, views and news and also make my views heard.

How do you receive your news about South African current affairs and why do you follow it?

I receive news through The Witness, radio current affairs talk shows and debates, television and the Internet. Following the news through these media keeps me well informed and it expands my knowledge about various issues.

Do you have any other passions or interests?

I am a marathon runner. This year I finished my sixth Comrades Marathon. My photograph, together with a “bus” of runners, was on the Comrades Marathon results front page on June 16. I have also completed two Two Oceans Marathons. I have been running since 1988 while I was at primary school. It keeps me fit and healthy. I also do community work by assisting unemployed graduates and I help in youth leadership and sport development projects. I also help my former high school friends with motivation and life skills.

What do you think the value of letter writing is? What inspires you to write letters?

It allows the sharing of know-ledge and views through a healthy debate without attacking the person but rather his or her views. This allows us to learn from each other, appreciate our diversity as readers

and also to tolerate the differences of our views on various socio-economic and political issues.

What do you think are the biggest challenges facing South Africa today?

Crime, unemployment, HIV/Aids and corruption, especially in the public service, as it results in the wasting of taxpayers’ hard-earned money and deprives the vulnerable people of accessing their livelihood and the much-needed basic services such as housing, health and social grants.

What is your age, marital status, children?

I am 33 years. I am married with three children.

What do you believe has been your best letter?

It has to be my letter about my disappointment at the light sentences (“slap on the wrist”) handed to KwaZulu-Natal public servants who fraudulently obtained low-cost housing, which was meant to be for the poor.

Do you get any feedback as result of your letters?

Lots of accolades and positive feedback. People who know me always phone when they see my letters in The Witness. Sometimes they challenge me on what I wrote and we debate the subject on which I wrote my letter.

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