Disaster with cyclone communication

2012-03-04 22:41

Richards Bay - Cyclone Irina emergency numbers released by the department of co-operative government and traditional affairs (Cogta) at a press briefing in Zululand on Saturday evening are incorrect.

And in one of the areas where the incorrect numbers for disaster help were quoted in a statement, uMkhanyakude District Municipality, three men were reported drowned on Sunday.

Another man was reported drowned in Hlabisa; which also falls under uMkhanyakude.

Phoning on Sunday to verify the numbers, The Zululand Fever found that four of the numbers allocated to district disaster lines yielded no results. Eleven numbers were quoted on the release.

All four numbers within the northern KwaZulu-Natal area on the list - believed to be most affected by the cyclone - were useless.

Amajuba and uThukela had a fax-like tone; uMkhanyakude’s number simply did not exist and Zululand District’s number rang and then connected to an alternative line, which also just rang.

All four numbers were contacted numerous times by The Zululand Fever. 

What is a cyclone?

One disaster call centre employee at a northern KwaZulu-Natal municipality with a functioning disaster line, asked what a cyclone was. She then said they had received no update on the situation. 

Another call centre employee at a northern KZN municipality asked The Zululand Fever to phone an alternative number; which led to another "alternative" number and eventually to a third "alternative" number. 

The employee also said that policy was to phone the municipality, which would get in touch with a ward councillor, who would get in touch with disaster management.

When asked how long the disaster centre expected a man or woman stuck on their rooftop to dial alternative lines while their home was flooding, the operator said she wasn’t quite sure. 

An employee at the KwaZulu-Natal disaster management centre in Pietermaritzburg told The Zululand Fever that the numbers  were double-checked before being issued.

However, The Zululand Fever has since ascertained that the number for uMkhanyakude has not been operational since 2010.

uMkhanyakude’s disaster management confirmed that this was, in fact, "an old number".

The only number in the Northern KZN area on the list that was working and manned by an operator who knew the situation and was on hand to give information was the uThungulu District Municipality - which includes uMhlathuze (Richards Bay), Umlalazi, Nkandla, Mfolozi, Ntambanana and Mthonjaneni  municipalities.

This does not bode well for the planning and implementation of Cogta’s or KZN’s disaster management policy.

An emergency meeting was called in Richards Bay on Saturday at the City of uMhlathuze (incorporating Richards Bay, Empangeni and other areas) municipality to discuss disaster management plans.

The KwaZulu-Natal cabinet EXCO was present.

Emergency meeting

It was at this meeting that the statement with the incorrect numbers was released. 

Cogta spokesperson Vernon Mchunu was made aware of the problems with the incorrect numbers by The Zululand Fever on Sunday evening  and said he would "inform the relevant people to look into the situation".

He said a meeting is to be convened on Monday where the matter is likely to be brought up.

In a press release issued at 19:30 on Sunday evening, Cogta reported that one infant and three female passengers died near Richards Bay on Saturday evening in an accident said to be due to the rains.

In uMkhanyakude District, a wall collapsed on a 56 year-old female resulting in a fractured pelvis and leg.

It further reported that in Hlabisa, the Wela River was in flood, making it difficult to cross in order to assist a maternity patient at Nhlwathi Clinic.

From Jozini to Durban, 13 minor accidents had occurred due to wet road conditions.


  • Sariena - 2012-03-04 23:02

    hahahahahahahahah.What a lot of fools.I bet the world is laughing.What a joke this country became

      JohhnyBGood - 2012-03-05 09:19

      hahaha, I had a good laugh! Thanks for lifting my spirits on the Monday morning. Ireally enjoiyed the laugh -- so did others in my office. Just read this again:"When asked how long the disaster centre expected a man or woman stuck on their rooftop to dial alternative lines while their home was flooding, the operator said she wasn’t quite sure." Hilarious !!!

      Paul - 2012-03-05 10:15

      Then please leave !

  • MandyDbn - 2012-03-04 23:03

    so.....what is a cyclone then? What a badly written article, I totally agree with @ Brad Frank.

  • Spyker - 2012-03-04 23:03

    And little more than 17 years ago this was still a functioning country...

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 10:37

      Really? For whom?

      robert.m.sylvester - 2012-03-05 10:42

      For everyone actually.........

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 11:43

      @robert, actually no, a little more then 17 years ago it was only white people who benefited, sorry to raise that old dish rag again, but so it was...

      gbbfg - 2012-03-06 09:19

      PointBlank: point is, all these important positions of responsibility were willfully handed over. Look what the newcomers have done with their position of power. Of course people are asking what the hell is going on! As far as the structure of the country goes, power, water, security, military, it's all WORSE. Much worse. You can not deny this. This has nothing to do with racism. It's about rushing people into positions before they had the means to do the job. It was obvious for all to see that this would happen, and yet this madness continued unabated. And now look. Everything is broken. But even worse than those not qualified for the job are those who are just plain lazy and corrupt. It is of no benefit to anyone, white, black or anything in between, to erode the structure of the country. It's the base on which everything else is built. Every single person in this country should be calling for the right people to be put in these jobs, but still they blindly carry on with this destructive policy of placing woefully inadequate people in charge of stuff that matters. There's a serious lack of foresight. This is what has been getting to me most. It seems that the ANC and the people it puts in charge don't have the ability to see past today. Honestly.

  • reine.marais - 2012-03-04 23:07

    This is an absolute tragedy. That a country can't even get an emergency situation right. People can and are dying as a direct consequence of ineptitude. For heaven's sake, please, people of South Africa. It really is time to do something pretty drastic about the crass incompetence of almost everything in this country.

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:48

      No im afraid its not a country that cant get it right, its KZN disaster management! Cape Town disaster management is the best in the country with competent people in place.

  • Bertus Pretorius - 2012-03-04 23:08

    Well, printing billboards with incorrect numbers just cost us hundreds of thousands of rands and was a big oops. Now, screwing up emergency numbers might just cost lives... Well done, our capable leaders, well done.

      Bakers - 2012-03-05 07:14

      Even ADT can get a 911 number 0860 100 911 Shame

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 08:48

      Dont follow the 911 number, think of numbers that sa masses can remember Like "0"

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 10:38

      @Fussed, not everyone is as dumb as you..

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 13:04

      @ PointBlank, I see the Cap fits

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 16:01

      You see a cap? Drinking much?

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 18:23

      @ PointBlank, You ,must be from Limpopo

  • sparklysparkle - 2012-03-04 23:13

    A damn shame. Disaster management African Style!!

      Juan - 2012-03-05 00:48

      A bigger disaster and more dangerous than the cyclone itself

      ronel.cousins - 2012-03-05 07:15

      Yes,the only disadter management they did,was to create another disaster!

  • Beverley Zieseniss Schutte - 2012-03-04 23:17

    ... So much for disaster management policies! 'They'll look into it, worries me on the complacency in light of the KZN storm deaths!

  • gevaert.gunter - 2012-03-04 23:25

    "What is a cyclone?" is used as a rhetorical question and heading and refers to the question asked by the Disaster Call Centre Employee. Most people know what a cyclone is. When you go see a doctor and tell him you have bad cough, he shouldn't ask you, "what is a cough?".

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:50

      Cyclone is a bicycle that looks just like another one!

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 08:50

      Most common frase used "eeeeeeeeeeee eish"

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 11:44

      @Fussed, as I mention above, it appears as if you the dumb one, it's "phrase" not "frase"... Eish, eeeeeeee... yes, you are the weakest link, goodbye.

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 18:27

      @ PointBlank Please dont hate yourself, there is medication you can take. Oh and by the way. get your head out of your ase and lighten up.

  • robbieyahu - 2012-03-04 23:41

    if one reads this ... it sums up alot about the situation in the country ...interesting ... fukin sad but ...interesting oh and my condolences to the famillies of the missing

  • phathuchicos - 2012-03-04 23:51

    So if it was white people handling this disaster I supposed they would have even managed to turn prevent the cyclone from coming...don't be pathetic, we are human-beings too and based on my experience SA is far much better now compared to pre-1994...i don't know about your experience.

      phathuchicos - 2012-03-05 01:06

      oh i get it...i rest my case then.

      Sean - 2012-03-05 09:12

      @The-Azanian- Are you trying to justify incompetency ??

      Susan - 2012-03-05 09:25

      Azanian, you mean no experience..hahaha

      robert.m.sylvester - 2012-03-05 10:48

      If it were white people, I would have personally hanged them.

      gbbfg - 2012-03-06 09:29

      Azanain: doing again what you do best: deflect. Don't be stupid. Nobody can stop a cyclone, and nobody suggested they could do so. That is entirely your own invention. I hate incompetence. And there is so much more of it now than there was before. How can you deny this? Blind.

  • Fanie - 2012-03-04 23:53


      phathuchicos - 2012-03-04 23:58

      And when the guy with 40% brain unoccupied(mr mulder) like you and those you mentioned experience a speech mulfunction...

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 07:19

      Azanian........My 6 year old son knows what a cyclone is. Stop looking for excuses for your incompetent government and accept the facts. A couple of years ago, some people were killed in KZN by lightning, and some or other stupid minister said, "Eeeh, we have to investigate lightning".....What kind of a reply is that to the problem. Now they are probably gonna say,.."Ehhhhh, we have to investigate the cyclones", rather than asking why their support and warning systems are up to sh*t, and why the people on the other side of the line don't know what a cyclone is. When you phone KFC for a Zinger, do you expect the staff to ask you,...."Ehhhhhh, what is a Zinger?".

      phathuchicos - 2012-03-05 07:53

      or so why not just donate him to the disaster management since he knows its meaning...does he also know what a cyclone is in African languages?

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:53

      A cyclone is a synonym for hurricane!

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 08:30

      Azanian....because he will probably make the rest of disaster management in KZN look like idiots. No need for him to know the word other than in English or Afrikaans, as it is deemed two of SA's 11 official languages. If you have nothing else constructive to say, stop pulling out the "African" this and "African" that comments. We were all born in Africa, that makes me an African, whether you like it or not.

      S - 2012-03-05 09:42

      @The-Azanian: By your definition Pieter Mulder has 60% of his brain occupied - by following your posts here it's clear that it's a lot more than you can claim.

      gbbfg - 2012-03-06 09:31

      Typical. Every time someone makes a valid, logical point, people like Azanian counter with total irrelevance and lies. Because they can't counter with logic. Either they know they are wrong, or they simply don't have the ability for rational thought.

  • Will - 2012-03-04 23:56

    And why am I not surprised? Imagine what the consequences would be if a major hurricane or tornado should hit the area!

      Boer - 2012-03-05 00:54

      It will be apartheid's fault.

      iainrhind - 2012-03-05 06:40

      Actually, cyclones and hurricanes are the same thing. It just depends on where you are in the world, as to what it gets called.

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 10:23

      Tey'll be doomed.

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 10:24

      Heavens, my spelling is bad this morning. That is ofcourse they'll be doomed.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 11:47

      @Jacqui, brain fart? "...ofcourse..." :)

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 13:27

      Pointblank. Sorry it gets to me sometime. Chemotherapy had curdled my brain. So yes, a real brainfart.

  • John - 2012-03-04 23:59

    Imagine "emergency number" 999,911 or 000. One number for all. We always have a "special agenda" when comes to a vital services like that

      Juan - 2012-03-05 00:58

      Good point, why can't we have one emergency number in this country? The USA have 911 accross 52 states. Is it impossible to do in 1 banana republic?

      John - 2012-03-05 02:06

      Juan, Emergency numbers in Nort American Dialing plan are subject to a reoccuring monthly fees to any landline and mobile phone. This is not optional and everyone pays those small fees to contribute for this global communication center. From there calls are redirected and all relevant entities (support services)are informed and dispatch. South Africa has a non-centralised system and/or policy in this regard. We don't have a single number policy. Just ask yourself what emergency numbers you dial when you need the fire department, police, medical assitance and others. Furthermore nowadays we don't have only Telkom in telecommunications sector. Chances of emergency call(s) not to reach those communication centers is very high. There is not real rulling by ICASA who can deliver emergency service calls. All ECN/ECNS licensees claim that emergency calls are bypassed by them and hand over to Telkom, but everyone has own way of dealing with this matter.

      robert.m.sylvester - 2012-03-05 10:51

      Helkom are simply too inefficient, and they don't care.

  • kitsykatsy - 2012-03-05 00:27

    Two typos --- so sorry - bad, bad, bad !

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:56

      In all of that, and the bigger picture, all you could come up with was typos???? Bad bad bad!

  • Petro - 2012-03-05 00:44

    So sad for the people who lost their lives and those who are missing....but then this cyclone is perhaps yet again allowed by Greater Powers to open some peoples ears and brains - if it is at all possible. Classic example of we have to deal with. Just had a phone call from the UK - someone read the article.....I HATE IT WHEN PEOPLE ASK ME WHAT THE HELL I AM DOING IN A THIRD WORLD COUNTRY??????

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:57

      This is why i get so angry with white people who dont vote and then use the BS excuse that their vote wont make a difference!

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:13

      hear, hear @ Jasoneye!

  • Donovan - 2012-03-05 00:50

    You can NOT make this stuff up!

  • mary.kircher - 2012-03-05 02:21

    so basically, what you are saying is, because nothing, but nothing, works as it is supposed to in every aspect of ANC government ..... we would stand a much better chance if we just shouted 'Beam me up Scotty' !

      JasonEye - 2012-03-05 07:59

      @Ayanda, Are you retarded? who runs the disaster management in KZN? isnt it the ANC? so if they fail at their duties, which they have so clearly done.....then we are not allowed to comment??? Me thinks you are blinded by unsubstantiated loyalty!

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:16

      Ayanda go sit in the corner and say 100 times to yourself "I will not make and @ss of myself on a public forum" KZN disaster management is managed by? come on, you can do it... ok, i'll spell it out for you... A.....N....C provincial government *facepalm*

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:48

      *nervous giggle* I think i may just have made a grammer @ss of myself with my "and @ss" comment... :D

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 10:29

      Ayanda, growing up is something you want to do. Of course the ANC is to blame, they are the ones who think people without proper training should be doing a job they can't. Surely by now you also know that, I mean look at the one who taught you English. Geez.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 11:50

      Guys, the disaster team did a fantastic job over the weekend saving THOUSANDS of lives, stop nit-picking - you are in fact the childish ones.. and you don't even realise it!

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 18:36

      @ PointBlank It's getting dark now dont forget your medication and taxi back to lompopo

  • Steve - 2012-03-05 03:51


  • beryl.knipe - 2012-03-05 04:55

    @Given: "An educated, sound-minded person.." MUST know what a cyclone is, which confirms some of the comments here - don't you think??

  • Heimirich van der Merwe - 2012-03-05 05:14

    Ayanda, what are u smoking??? This has nothing to do about hate, this relates to human lives. Having the right info is essential, like saying u r prepared then best u be prepared. Come now, playing the race card is really getting so old

  • Hein Helmand - 2012-03-05 05:26


  • Bandile - 2012-03-05 05:30

    That's how they roll in (South) Africa. Incompetents are in charge.

  • Marais Van den Berg - 2012-03-05 05:34

    What I don't get is how a call-centre operator, who has been deployed SPECIFICALLY at the the cyclone disaster centre, doesn't know what a cyclone is. It's a bit like calling the fire department with your house in flames and they reply, "what is a fire?" For all I care they can appoint a person who is purple with orange and yellow polkadots, as long as s/he CAN DO THE BLOODY JOB AND IS NOT A BLOODY COMPLETE RETARD!

      Susan - 2012-03-05 09:31

      Ya and i suppose they have paid this person a fat salary for not knowing anything,,,

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 11:50

      @Susan - "call-centre operator.."

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 18:37

      @ PointBlank "TAXI"

  • clivegoss - 2012-03-05 05:35

    Poorly written with one honest comment "what is a cyclone"? For the the rest a standard local gov SNAFU ! Sadly human lives are lost because of these inefficiencies.

      Pieter - 2012-03-05 05:48


  • Pieter - 2012-03-05 05:46

    BWA HA HA What is a siclone??? Only in SA. Onnosel p@ephol

      Pieter - 2012-03-05 05:48


      Pieter - 2012-03-05 05:49


  • Imvubu - 2012-03-05 06:01

    The remarks to this article show again the "Intelligent Elite" with an IQ of 0.0 which can only point fingers and criticize people which are less fortunate and had the misfortune not to have the same ""high"" level of knowledge. I wonder why you guy's are not sharing the knowledge of yours with others? Just one question-- do you know the difference between a Cyclone and a Tornado????

      Marais Van den Berg - 2012-03-05 06:12

      A tornado is a violent, dangerous, rotating column of air that is in contact with both the surface of the earth and a cumulonimbus cloud. A cyclone is a storm system characterized by a low-pressure center and numerous thunderstorms that produce strong winds and heavy rain. Now you know too...

      Boer - 2012-03-05 06:48

      Imvubu: Stop playing the victim. We all had opportunities to go to school. Some choose to go to school and learn, some choose to burn them down and some choose to sleep under the tree on the way to school. If you’re happy with the level of incompetence don’t think that we all are.

      jannie.beirowski - 2012-03-05 07:37

      @Marais - Thanks for the detail. Maybe you could have added they are both natural disasters that cause lots of damage and deaths by wind and water. In your explanation you are using lots of words that will confuse lots of people even more and lots of comments like ''Éish!''

      NrGx - 2012-03-05 09:12

      While you and some others find excuses for the ineptitude of our government (yes, OUR!), once again blaming the "white people" for pointing out the obvious, YOUR brothers and sisters are dying! The simple fact is, regardless of race, it is flipping simple to get a telephone number correct...right! (i.e, whats your cell phone number? i bet you know!). So our plight is...WHY CANT THE GOVERNMENT GET A TEL NUMBER CORRECT, especially when lives are at stake!

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:27

      @NrGX sometimes its not so much about what is being pointed out, but in the manner in which it is done. As much as i agree with the ineptitude and incompetence of KZN disaster management, the manner in which people are sharing their frustrations leaves a lot to be desired. Yes, people are 'gatvol' and rightfully so, however making overtly and on most occasions subtle racist comments does not help to either make for a better SA or constructively mend the situation we ALL find ourselves in.

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:28

      ps @ NrGX... i agree with you ;)

      Pur - 2012-03-05 10:19

      I don't think anyone is criticising people for being less fortunate or for not having the same "high" level of knowledge. What they are criticising is the ANC local government for appointing those "less fortunate" people who do not have the "high" level of education to jobs they cannot do properly or efficiently. It's not about race, its about unnecessary loss of life caused by the mismanagement of the ANC.

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 10:35

      Why is it that with you lot they are always less fortunate?. Do you think I was born with a golden spoon in my mouth?. If I were you I would not mention IQ. 'Misfortune of not having the knowledge of yours'. Blimey what are they teaching at school these days.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 13:44

      @Pur, are you reading the comments?? How can you not see the subtle racism????

      Fussed - 2012-03-05 18:38

      @ PointBlank you still here.It's dark now

      gbbfg - 2012-03-06 09:36

      I'm noticing a definite trend here. This is not a racist comment but an observation. It seems to me that most of the comments from the people capable of logical thought involve a timeline that begins today, and runs long into the future. The people like Imvubu have a timeline that ENDS today and only spans backwards. Now you tell me which is more beneficial to our country. Yesterday will never happen again. When are you people going to start worrying about TOMORROW?

  • Wendy - 2012-03-05 06:09

    Disaster management and journalism all in the same category!

  • The-third - 2012-03-05 06:35

    I think I see the funny side in all of this... yes, I do.

  • Lynne Straughan Keuler - 2012-03-05 06:40

    What is disaster management? Lol...

  • anthro45 - 2012-03-05 06:48

    Does this come as a surprise to anybody? The usual uneducated, useless bunch at work.

  • Daan - 2012-03-05 06:50

    When in Rome, do as the Romans do. WORRY!!!!

  • Kevin - 2012-03-05 06:55

    The anc excelling at service delivery. What a circus. Was the journalist on something when the article was written?

  • godesha - 2012-03-05 06:58

    No surprises here. When I read that the disaster team in KZN were on stand-by, my thought were "Yeah right".

  • Lauden Kirk - 2012-03-05 07:01

    Budget speech = cyclone. Moral of the story high rip off tax and no honest gov. Murder charges

  • Andrew Worrall - 2012-03-05 07:02

    Eish its apartheids fault probably

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 13:45

      Seriously, so old now.

  • Craig - 2012-03-05 07:10

    It is common knowledge that without private security or medical you are pretty screwed, so why the suprise over incompetent disaster management. It`s the poor that keep an incompetent government in place and the poor that suffer the most as a result. So lets all stop bitching and whining and get on with making sure our own arses are covered.

      robert.m.sylvester - 2012-03-05 07:52

      Absolutely correct.

  • Wayne - 2012-03-05 07:10


  • Mark - 2012-03-05 07:11

    KwaZulu/Natal's disaster management system reminds me of the joke about military intelligence - a contradiction in terms - which in turn reminds me of why we're a 3rd world country. You really can't expect people who are only in government because of their party membership to actually be able to do anything. That would make us 1st world...........

  • Bomb - 2012-03-05 07:12

    Damn racist cyclones.....sent by the agents to attack the poor black communities. This is all the white man's fault!!

  • Marion - 2012-03-05 07:17

    May all those who have died RIP and condolences to their family and friends. COGTA, you should hang your heads in shame for telling people they could reach out for assistance and then not ensuring that assistance was readily available. Then you should be severely disciplined if not fired. This is nothing but sheer incompetence.

      Boer - 2012-03-05 07:19

      "Then you should be severely disciplined if not fired. This is nothing but sheer incompetence." Dream on, not going to heppen.

  • braamc - 2012-03-05 07:28

    Good day, your call is important to us. You are no 4563 in line. All calls are recorded for your safety and security, ayes

  • Andriette - 2012-03-05 07:33

    OMG... Hopefully all the people who needed help got help no thanks to the goverment.

  • Johan Grobbelaar - 2012-03-05 07:34

    LOL! This is Africa!

  • Sariena - 2012-03-05 07:35

    Azanian.There are human-beings and idiot-beings.You are an idiot-being with a brain capacity of chicken.Go back to your playpen.

      phathuchicos - 2012-03-05 07:48

      such a desperate old lady living in the past ey...come back to 21st South Africa.

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 08:34

      Azanian......South Africa was still in the 20th century up until 1993......then we went back to the 14th century.

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:38

      democracy is so 14th century! :| Seriously!!!? Whether we like it or not, we are now in a democracy, pre 94 we were not. I yearning for pre 94 is a yearning for Apartheid and all its 20th century benefits. Going backward wont help any of us, we need to move forward... TOGETHER! And as much as you may wish for it, there is no going back to your '20th century' South Africa. Together Bomb, TOGETHER! And if the other kids (ANC) dont want to play with you, show then you are the better person... dont wish for the old 'evil' because it benefited you better then the present 'evil'... ;)

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 10:17

      @Juliarse,.....the last thing I wish for is pre 93 apartheid. But I do wish for pre 93 education standards, health standards, infrastructure standards, service delivery standards, policing and military standards. All of which was in place when the first democratically elected government took over, YET it has all fallen apart. I benefited absolutely nothing from the previous "evil" era, I paid for school, didnt get it for free, paid for water&electr, didnt get it for free, paid to stay in a house, didnt get it for free, paid for medical, didnt get it for free, had to obtain HIGHER educational pass rates, didn't get it on a plate, and so I can go on. The streets were much cleaner, the police more professional, the hospitals much better, and schools without broken windows. Everything was in place already, but yet you could'nt even get that right.All you had to do was make it available to ALL, QUITE RIGHTLY SO, and look after it without letting everything go backwards, YET YOU COULD'NT GET THAT RIGHT!

      Jacqui - 2012-03-05 10:41

      Now you call me an old lady and I will shove my Luthuli right under your nose. Don't try and be grown up before your time.

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 10:55

      and so i am either black or an ANC supporter if i disagree with your comment and the manner you have versed it(ps... reading your 08h34 comment... what do you think people will think you are referring to?) "...but yet you could'nt even get that right.All you had to do was make it available to ALL, QUITE RIGHTLY SO, and look after it without letting everything go backwards, YET YOU COULD'NT GET THAT RIGHT!" FYI... PROUDLY DA! PROUDLY SOUTH AFRICAN... and not a person with a darker shade of skin. WOW dude! Enough said ;)

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 11:01

      Juliarse,........yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwn.........FYI (not the "for your info" one).

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 11:29

      :) very mature Point taken... Nice comeback! ;)

      Bomb - 2012-03-05 11:35 yourself to one of my ice cold Bells!

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 13:07

      @Bomb, you wish for a pre 93 with all the benefits? But bomb, those only favoured white people... So in essence you are wanting apartheid back.. The apartheid government never had to look after as many people as the current government...

      Bomb - 2012-03-06 07:26 must READ my young boy, READ what I said. I want pre-93 benefits back for ALL people. Where did I say I want it back for whites? READ, son, READ......but then again, you probably came through the post-93 education system, so reading and interpreting what you are reading might be a challenge. The current government could look after more people, if there were LESS corruption and thieving and plundering of tax money. R..E..A..D. When you cant argue a valid point, why always pull the "apartheid" card? Why do you not acknowledge that your politicians are thieves. Its funny how all of them live like kings and the majority of the supporters still like squatters. Wake up man. They are just feeding you enough to ensure you vote for them again, yet behind your backs, these idiots laugh at all of you, filling the pockets.

  • Mind - 2012-03-05 07:36

    my condolences to the families who lost their loved ones. again poor policies and implementation as well as lack of training. but reading most comments i think racism is a big issue and we are far from being a rainbow nation. if there is still individuals who look at another race and referr to them as "twats"? may God have mercy.

      willybegood - 2012-03-05 09:42

      100 THUMBS UP... to counter the myriad of thumbs downs you probably will receive from "you know who". hehehehe

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 13:08

      It was not this that killed those people, it was wait for it..... the weather!

      TaniaSandraSteyn - 2012-03-05 14:34

      Thank you, Mind. The racist comments already started last night when there were only about ten comments. People only read what they want to "hear". My comment seems to have disappeared. The article reads as a chronicle of failure - which I believe was writer's intention. Imagine you frustration as a caller in dire straits, trying number after number wihout a response, or proper assistance. Government Disaster Management should seriously look into GPS to pinpoint locations - the namechanges have left a lot of people confused.

      Bomb - 2012-03-06 07:33

      @PointBlank........funny, you are not blaming the weather on the "apartheid" government.....that's good man, a step in the right direction

  • ZION - 2012-03-05 07:40

    First we had the V.d. Merwe jokes then the Shaik jokes. the Selebi jokes, the Zuma jokes, Malema jokes, Bob-next door jokes and now we have the Cogta Jokes. How much rain must come down before it can go up again.

      Gerhard - 2012-03-05 12:17

      The Ancestors sent the cyclone to punish the ANC

  • Devon - 2012-03-05 07:42

    Shocking; is this the way to handle a state of emergency dew to wrong contact numbers and in the mean while people are dying? Shocking; shocking

      richard.hipkin - 2012-03-05 13:10

      No Devon, they didn't die because they couldn't contact the emergency centres.... You making something of nothing..

  • Kevin.Ellianda - 2012-03-05 07:48

    There is one important thing to learn from this. Do not rely on anything from this government because you WILL be terribly dissapointed. No use in complaining about them too because that won't change anything. We need to learn to stand together and help each other. Educate yourself on as much as you can and prepare yourself for natural disasters.

  • rooibok1 - 2012-03-05 07:54

    They did well.... 7 out of 11 was working.!! Wasnt expecting that odds.

  • LekkePerd - 2012-03-05 08:00

    Get your Local HAM Radio community involved. In Indonesia with yhe Tsunami that was all comms that worked . Proudly Radio amateur ZS1DDP