ABOUT US
noticeboardpic.gif (1810 bytes) Notice Board   space.gif (821 bytes)

Issue no.16 - 14-28 June 2002



International Bar Association
Durban, October 2002
Government Gazette Update
For Comment
Commencement Dates
Gazette Notices
Recent Journal Articles of Interest
Bureau for Mercantile Law Bulletin
Comparative and International Law Journal of Southern Africa
De Rebus
The Taxpayer
News on the Electronic Front
Recent Judgments available on the Internet
Documents now available on the Internet
Useful links and other snippets
News on the Net
Making search engines work for YOU
New viruses on the block
Light relief
. . . a bizarre story

Source : unconfirmed     



Durban, Otober 2002 

Largest international legal conference goes to Durban

Lawyers from around the world will be gathering in Durban, South Africa in October for  this year’s major conference for the legal profession. The International Bar Association (IBA) will host over 100 sessions on all major aspects of law, from commerce to human rights, and on its pioneering work dealing with international terrorism.

Globalisation has placed a greater demand on the legal profession to broaden its knowledge and as the most recognised international organisation for debate and discussion on issues that impact on both global and domestic legal markets, the IBA is ideally placed to provide this education.

For more than 50 years, the IBA has gained recognition as the global representative of both individual lawyers, and the Bar Associations and Law Societies that oversee them.  It is this dual membership that makes the IBA unique and well placed to meet the challenge of responding to a modern legal profession.

Grouped into three Sections – Business Law, Legal Practice, and Energy & Natural Resources Law – more than 60 specialist Committees provide members with access to leading experts and up-to-date information as well as top-level professional development and network-building opportunities. The IBA’s Human Rights Institute works across the Association, helping to promote, protect and enforce human rights under a just rule of law, and to preserve the independence of the judiciary and the legal profession worldwide.

Each year, the IBA stages some 30 events around the globe.  The highlight of the IBA Conference calendar is the major international Conference, which the Association holds each year.  This year, it will be held in Durban, South Africa between 20 and 25 October. As a country that has experienced immense legal and political change over the last decade, the IBA believes that South Africa is the ideal setting in which to stage its first major conference in Africa. Thabo Mbeki, who played his part in this historic transition, has been formally invited to speak.

Durban 2002 promises to be this year’s largest gathering of international lawyers, with 3,000 delegates expected to attend.  It is open to all practitioners, regardless of whether or not they are currently members of the IBA. The programme features 100 working sessions covering all areas of practice, as well as a number of showcase sessions which will provide a platform for debate on some of the most important issues affecting the legal profession today. 

‘Durban 2002 is probably the most important legal conference ever to be held in South Africa, and indeed Africa,’ says Ms Nicky Newton-King, Director New Business and General Counsel of the JSE Securities Exchange South Africa. ‘I think it will be essential to be there, and to participate in the impressive programme.  Members of my team will definitely attend the conference and I urge all African lawyers to do the same.’

One of the key sessions to take place will see the groundbreaking first report of the IBA’s Task Force on International Terrorism, headed by Justice Richard Goldstone and Ambassador Emilio Cárdenas, and other leading figures in international law and human rights.  The IBA is hopeful that the Task Force’s work will lead to a new international convention on terrorism.  A second showcase session will explore the contradictory, and sometimes dangerous position in which lawyers that practice in multiple jurisdictions may find themselves when fulfilling their professional obligations.  This session will raise some of the contradictions now faced by lawyers as cross-border work continues to expand.  The role and value of truth and reconciliation commissions will also be considered in a third session.

The programme has been devised for lawyers by lawyers to ensure the content is as relevant and up to date as possible.  At least one fifth of the programme focuses on issues specific to Africa with African speakers leading many of the sessions.

Here are some of the sessions that African lawyers may find of particular interest, among others:

  • The impact on the banking, investment and financial services industry of global measures to combat abuse of the financial system

  • Status and outlook for the Doha Round

  • Law office management

  • The Hague Child Abduction Convention

  • Child abuse: an international problem

  • Independence of the judiciary

  • Insolvency in Africa

  • Accessing the African mutual funds market

  • Arbitration in Africa

  • Real Estate in developing countries – in particular in Africa

  • Electricity restructuring and international trading: lessons from the African experience

  • Human Rights in Southern Africa

  • Barriers to entry to the legal profession in Africa: the unlevel playing field for wome n

  • Alternative investments in Africa

  • Conservation issues in Africa

  • Telecommunications models for developing countries – looking to the future

‘The IBA conference in Durban is the first ever annual conference to be held in Africa. For us in Durban it is a proud achievement to host the largest gathering of lawyers in the world at our internationally acclaimed conference centre (the ICC) and to show the outside world what Africa and South Africa are all about.’
Ashwin Trikamjee, Chairperson, Host Committee

IBA Conferences also offer participants the chance to network with lawyers from across the world, helping them to build and extend contacts and exchange professional experiences.    The varied social programme gives plenty opportunities for networking, and along with the strength of the working programme, this is undoubtedly a major reason why delegates return year after year.

Further information

The IBA website – – lists details of all forthcoming IBA Conferences, including programme and registration information.  Papers can be downloaded and the site also offers an online registration facility.  To view the programme and register on-line for the IBA’s 2002 Conference in Durban, please go to

To request a printed programme by mail, please contact Membership Services, International Bar Association, 271 Regent Street, London W1B 2AQ, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (0)20 7629 1206; Fax: +44 (0)20 7409 0456; e-mail:




  For Comment 

Management of drug abuse in schools and training institutions

Call for comment on draft policy for the management of drug abuse by learners in public schools and further education and training institutions – before 30-06-2002
GN 790/ GG 23490/ 06-06-2002


  Commencement Dates 

Lotteries Amendment Act
with effect from 07-06-2002
Proc R 48/GG 23502/07-06-2002
Land and Agricultural Development Bank Act
with effect from 10-06-2002
Proc R 50/GG 23505/10-06-2002



Road Accident Fund Amendment Bill
Explanatory summary
GenN 928/GG 23487/06-06-2002
Reinstatement of Enrolment of Certain Deceased Legal Practitioners Bill
B-6B 2002
Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill
B-8B 2002
Constitution of the RSA Amendment Bill
B-16B 2002
Constitution  of the RSA Second Amendment Bill
B-17B 2002
Probation Services Amendment Bill
B-18B 2002
State Information Technology Amendment Bill
B-24 2002
KwaZulu Cane Growers' Association Act Repeal Bill
B-48 2001
Mental Health Care Bill
B-69D 2001
Planning Profession Bill
B-76B 2002



Animal Identification Act 6 of 2002
No 769/GG 23479/03-06-2002
Veterinary and Para-Veterinary Professions Amendment Act 10 of 2002
No 770/GG 23480/03-06-2002
Immigration Act 13 of 2002
No 766/GG 23478/31-05-2002



Amendment of Public Service Regulations 2001
GN R 838/GG 23524/14-06-2002
GN R 840/GG 23517/21-06-2002
Genetically Modified Organisms Act 15 of 1997
GN R 823/GG 23517/21-06-2002
Notice of intention to make regulations regarding the use or possession of certain radio apparatus without a radio frequency spectrum licence, certificate, authority or permit
Gen N 930/GG 23491/07-06-2002
Notice of intention to make regulations regarding the continuous compliance of telecommunications equipment or facilities
Gen N 931/GG 23492/07-06-2002
National Lottery regulations in respect of promotional competitions
GN R 798/GG 23501/07-06-2002
and with effect from 07-06-2002
GNR 797/GG 23501/07-06-2002
South African Police Service
GN R 839/GG 23525/14-06-2002


  Gazette Notices 

Financial Services Board
Levies on financial institutions
BN 60/2002/GG 23510/11-06-2002
Notice of intention to issue a Public Switched Telecommunications Service (PSTS) licence to the second national operator to be licenced in terms of s.32A
GenN 894/GG 23475/31-05-2002
Public Service Act 1994 (in respect of the Free State)
Amendment of Schedule 2
Proc R 49/GG 23498/14-06-2002
Trade and Industry
Usury Act : amendment of annual finance charge rates
GN 819/GG 23512/12-06-2002




  Bureau for Mercantile Law Bulletin 
Personal liability of director of financial service company
Product liability
Common assumptions in contracts
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.1
Court Reports

Position of arbitrator - Johan Louw Konstruksie (Edms) v Mitchell v NO and Another 2002(3) SA 171(C)          

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.2
Close Corporations

Liability for carrying-on business of corporation recklessly with main gross negligence - L& P Plant Hire BK en Andere v Bosch en Andere 2002(2) SA 662(SCA)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.3

Winding-up - Nel and Others NO v The Master and Others 2002(3) SA 354(SCA) ; Atkinson v Rare Erf Extraction Co Ltd 2002(2) SA 47(C)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.3

Simulated transactions - Registrateur van Aandelebeurse v Aldum h/a Onecor Group en Ander Besighede 2002(2)SA 767(SCA)

Rectification - Akasia Road Surfacing (Pty) Ltd en 'n Ander v Shoredits Holdings Ltd en Andere 2002(3) SA 346(SCA)

Contract not void if common assumption fails - Smith NO and Another v Van Reenen Steel (Pty) Ltd and Another 2002(2) SA 613(D)

Claim in delict for the breach of contract - Pinshaw v Nexus Securities (Pty) Ltd and Another 2002(2) SA 510(C)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.7
Labour Law

Unfair dismissal : the constituency principle - South African Commercial Catering and Allied Workers Union and Others v Irvin & Johnson Ltd 2002(3) SA 250(LAC)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.7

Advertising billboards: commercial speech - North Central Local Council  and South Central Local Council  v  Roundabout Outdoor (Pty) Ltd and Others 2002(2) SA 625(D)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.7
Monetary Law

Duty of care imposed on director of financial services company - Pinshaw v Nexus Securities (Pty) Ltd and Another 2002(2) SA 510(C)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.8

Future Medical expenses - Peens v Road Accident fund 2002(2) SA 636(D)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.9
Property Law

Legal representation: Extension of Security of Tenure Act 1997 and Labour Reform (Labour Tenants) Act 1996 - Nkunzi Development Association v Government of Republic of South Africa and Another 2002(2) SA 733(LCC)

Is sand a mineral? - Kameelfontein Boerdery CC v Worldwide Expo (Pty) Ltd 2002(3) SA 248(T)

Mortgage and bond - Nedcor Bank Ltd v Kindo and Another 2002(3) SA 185(C)

Purchaser buying property without knowledge of unregistered servitude - Wahloo Sand BK en Andere v Trustees, Hambly Parker Trust , en Andere 2002(2) SA 776(SCA)

CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.9
Action based on defamation - Holomisa v Khumalo and Others 2002 (3) SA 38 (T)
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.11
Liability of surety - Blue Chip Consultants (Pty) Ltd v Shamrock 2002(3) SA 231(W)
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.12
Liability for defective products - Ciba–Geigy (Pty) Ltd v Lushof Farms (Pty) Ltd en ‘n Ander 2002(2) SA 447(SCA)
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.12
Publications and research
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.14
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.16
International Review
CLISB - 2002, v.20(1), p.18


  Comparative and International Law 
  Journal of Southern Africa 
Planning, informal settlement and housing in South Africa : the Development Facilitation Act in view of Latin American and African developments
J M Pienaar
CILSA - v.35(1), p.1
The enforcement and recognition of judgements and other forms of legal co-operation in the SACD
A Thomashausen
CILSA - v.35(1), p.26
The debt collection problem : can credit control offer solution?
R Kelbric
CILSA - v.35(1), p.38
The threat posed by the World Trade Organisation to developing countries
D de Noronha Goyos
CILSA - v.35(1), p.52
The multiplicity of transition
K van Marle
CILSA - v.35(1), p.65
University autonomy and academic freedom in Africa : ex Africa semper aliquid novi?
C R M Dlamini
CILSA - v.35(1), p.77
African responses to environmental protection
M van der Linde
CILSA - v.35(1), p.99
Current legal developments : Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe
Donovan, Jacobs, Kumar, Moodley, Quansab, Southwood
CILSA - v.35(1), p.114


  De Rebus 
click on the underlined titles to access the documents online
It's time for hard questions about the Road Accident Fund
DR - 2002 June, p.2
DR - 2002 June, p.3
MVA symposium backfires on RAF
DR - 2002 June, p.10
Moseneke challenges judges to embrance transformative adjudication
DR - 2002 June, p.12
Two articles share Butterworths prize
DR - 2002 June, p.12
Pro bono : appealing to the profession's social conscience
DR - 2002 June, p.13
Bench press
DR - 2002 June, p.15
People and practices
DR - 2002 June, p.16
Negotiating the financial Intelligence Centre Act
In this first of two-part series, Bert Bester explains attorneys’ administrative duties under s 42 of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, pointing out that its’extraordinary demands’ will compel attorneys to walk an intimidating tightrope between the FICA duties, their personal interests and their clients ‘ interest
DR - 2002 June, p.22
2001 : a trademark odyssey
Last year saw the passing of an unusually high number of judgements by the Supreme Court of appeal in trade mark cases. Owen Salmon surveys those judgements which concerned an area of law frequently crucial to the outcome of trade mark disputes
DR - 2002 June, p.26
The poisoned chalice
Derek Momberg and Adele Els examine the history and rationale underlying the post-infringement trade dress evaluation principle and discuss its general application. The discussion canvasses previous finding of the appeal court which might have a different outcome had the principles been applied
DR - 2002 June, p.30
Practice management : practical bookkeeping
Dirk Vercuil
DR - 2002 June, p.35
The law reports
DR - 2002 June, p.37
Civil procedure and costs
Andries Cilliers
DR - 2002 June, p.41
Recent constitutional cases
Saber Ahmed Jazbhay
DR - 2002 June, p.43
Case note : fees for attorney acting as counsel
Roelof McLachlan
DR - 2002 June, p.47
New legislation
Pieter and Koos Stassen
DR - 2002 June, p.48
Capital Gains Tax and limited interests
Ben Strauss
DR - 2002 June, p.51
Employment law update
Talita Laubscher
DR - 2002 June, p.53
Property law update : drawing the line : apportionment of expenses of exclusive use areas
Tertius Maree
DR - 2002 June, p.54
Books for lawyers
DR - 2002 June, p.56


  The Taxpayer 
The quality of income tax assessments : not good
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.81
Tax avoidance : recent United Kingdom precedent turns away from 'substance over form'
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.82
Notice to furnish returns for the 2002 year of assessment
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.85
Approval of retirement funds
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.87
Revision of transfer duty rates for natural persons
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.88
SARS Interpretation Notes
Interpretation Note 2 : Foreign dividends : deductibility of interest
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.89
Interpretation Note 8 : Insolvent estates
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.92
Purchased annuities : administration expenses
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.96
Tank containers : whether tax avoidance scheme involved
Case law
Taxpayer - v.51(5), p.97




  Recent Judgments available on the Internet 

7 June 2002

Mbuli v The State

Robbery - whether evidence establishing guilt of appellant - unlawful possession of hand grenade - whether joint possession established

31 May 2002

Weiner v Broekhuysen

Administration orders – Magistrates’ Courts Act 32 of 1944, s 74 – Interpretation of – Administrator’s entitlement to fees

31 May 2002

Ndhlovu and Others v The State

Criminal law–Hearsay evidence–Act 45 of 1988–Act not unconstitutional–Admission of hearsay evidence by one accused against fellow accused–Admissible when if sufficient guarantees of trustworthiness

31 May 2002

Premier of the Eastern Cape Province and Others v Sekeleni
Public Service – Transkei – Interpretation of section 15(1) and (2) of Public Service Act 43 of 1978 (Transkei), as amended

31 May 2002

Pretoria Portland Cement Company Ltd and Another v Competition Commission and Others

Search and seizure under the Competition Act 89 of 1998 – warrant issued by judge in terms of s46 – whether acts judicially or administratively – in any event judge not to be cited as a party – dicta to the contrary wrong – refusal to hand over affidavit on which warrant obtained – denial of right to know accusation faced - insinuating uninvited television crew – serious invasion of privacy – either an abuse of court process or a wrongful or unconstitutional act under s49 (1) of the Act or the Constitution – warrant set aside

31 May 2002

Muller v Botswana Development Corporation Limited

Principal and surety – actions against surety – summary judgment – surety raising defence that principal debtor in separate action had illiquid counterclaim against creditor for amount exceeding creditor’s claim and involving set-off – opposing affidavit to comply with Uniform Rule 32(3)(b) and disclose valid counterclaim

31 May 2002

Road Accident Fund v Klisiewicz

The interpretation and application of article 43 of the Multilateral Motor Vehicle Accidents Fund Agreement in a case where the monetary limitation in article 46 applies



14 June 2002
CCT 53/01
Khumalo and others v Holomisa

12 June 2002
CCT 13/02
National Director of Public Prosecutions v Mohamed NO and others

12 June 2002
CCT 7/02
Uthukela District Municipality and others v President of the Republic of South Africa and others

12 June 2002
CCT 49/01
Singo v S

11 June 2002
CCT 52/01
Bierman v S

11 June 2002
CCT 21/01
Van Rooyen and others v S and others


no new judgments this week



14 June 2002
LCC 41R/02
De Kock v Frederick
Automatic review under s19(3) of Extension of Security of Tenure Act, 1997 - magistrate failed to forward papers for automatic review - respondent already evicted - right of residence not cancelled - had separate lease agreement - no notice to vacate - failure to indicate whether s10 or s 11 applies - failure to request s9(3) report - failure to consider s13 - eviction order set aside

14 June 2002
LCC 40R/02
De Kock v Pilane and another
Automatic review under s19(3) of Extension of Security of Tenure Act, 1997 - magistrate failed to forward papers for automatic review - respondents already evicted - right of residence not cancelled - had separate lease agreement - no notice to vacate - failure to indicate whether s10 or s11 applies - failure to request s9(3) report - failure to consider s13 - eviction order set aside

13 June 2002
LCC 19/02
Gili Greenworld Holdings (Pty) Ltd v Shisonge and others
Extension of Security of Tenure Act,1997 - urgent application for eviction under s15 - possibility of economic loss not necessarily fulfilling requirements of s5(1)(a) - facts did not establish real and imminent danger of substantial injury or damage to person or property - application dismissed

11 June 2002
LCC 52R/02
Hlomohlomo Game Reserve CC v Sithole
Extension of Security of Tenure Act 62 of 1997 - automatic review in terms of s19(3) - sction 13 not considered - referred back to magistrate to consider s13


  Documents now available on the Internet 

Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill : unofficial information repository
* a website dedicated to this document and related articles


South Africa Government Online
Land and Agricultural Development Bank Act 15 of 2002
Immigration Act 13 of 2002
State Information Technology Agency Amendment Bill [B24-2002]
South African Maritime and Aeronautical Search and Rescue Bill [B23-2002]
Local Government: Municipal Structures Amendment Bill [B22-2002]
Disaster Management Bill [B21-2002]
Health Donations Fund Act Repeal Bill [B20-2002]
Prevention of Corruption Bill [B19-2002]
Draft Bills
Draft Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Bill (Gazette 23438, Notice 763), 22 May 2002
Draft Community Reinvestment (Housing) Bill (Gazette 23423, Notice 747), 17 May 2002


Umwembi's Resource of South African Government Information
* Road Accident Fund Amendment Bill  [B27-2002]
* Loss or Retention of Membership of National and Provincial legislatures Bill [B25-2002]


Parliamentary Monitoring Group
Justice and Constitutional Development Portfolio Committee
25 June 2002
Interception and Monitoring Bill : deliberations ; International Criminal Court Bill ; High Court Decision on Crossing Legislation
Justice and Constitutional Development Portfolio Committee
21 June 2002
Committee Report on Protocol on Establishment of African Court on Human and Peoples' Rights
Justice and Constitutional Development Portfolio Committee
19 June 2002
African Court Bill : adoption of Resolution ; Interception and Monitoring Bill : deliberations ; Crossing-the-floor Legislation : consideration of NCOP amendments
Justice and Constitutional Development Portfolio Committee
18 June 2002
Interception and Monitoring Bill : deliberations
Justice and Constitutional Development Portfolio Committee ; Provincial and Local Government Portfolio Committee : joint meeting
10 June 2002
Crossing the floor : resolution ; Notices to Speaker and Electorical Commission
Provincial and Local Government Portfolio Committee
20 June 2002
Resolution relating to Cape Town rates challenge ; Committee Report on Study Tour to Spain
Provincial and Local Government Portfolio Committe
19 June 2002
Resolution relating to Cape Town rates challenge ; Committee Report on Study Tour to Spain
Labour and Public Enterprise Select Committee
18 June 2002
Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill : finalisation
Labour and Public Enterprise Select Committee
12 June 2002
Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill : briefing
Security and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee
25 June 2002
Implementation of Rome Statute of International Criminal Court Bill [B42B-2001] and Reinstatement of Enrolment of Certain Deceased Legal Practitioners Bill [B 6B-2002] : finalisation
Security and Constitutional Affairs Select Committee ; Local Government and Administration Select Committee : joint meeting
18 June 2002
Crossing the Floor Legislation : final mandates
Security and Constitutional Affairs ; Local Government and Administration Select Committees : joint meeting
14 June 2002
Crossing the Floor Legislation : negotiating mandates
Social Services Select Committee
18 June 2002
Child Support Grant / Social Security for Children : briefing by ACESS
Constitutional Review Committee COMMITTEE
18 June 2002
Constitutional Literacy Campaign : briefing by Government Communication and Information System
Joint Monitoring Committee on Improvement of Quality of Life and Status of Children, Youth and Persons with Disabilities
19 June 2002
Department of Justice and Constitutional Development on Child Justice Bill and Child Justice Project : workshop
Ad Hoc Committee on Filling of Vacancy on Commission for Gender Equality
19 June 2002
Shortlisting of Candidates
Ad Hoc Committee on Filling of Vacancies for Human Rights Commission
21 June 2002
Final Recommendations
Task Group on Sexual Abuse of Children
12 June 2002
Adoption of Final Report


Treasury Department
Address to the Black Business Council Conference, Sandton
18 June 2002
Mr Trevor Manuel
Absa Bank Limited joining the panel of primary dealers
1 July


  Useful links and other snippets 

15th Annual Labour Law Conference website
3-5 July 2002


Jakob Nielsen : guru of web usability
Interview 2002


World's smallest website


  News on the Net 

The fax machine uprising - 24 June
How did a loose collective of internet users force a government U-turn on controversial changes to digital privacy laws? The answer is that they did it using simple technology to create a large-scale grassroots protest campaign almost overnight
'Snoop' climbdown by Blunkett - 18 June
Home Secretary David Blunkett has admitted he blundered over plans dubbed a "snooper's charter" to give a raft of public bodies in the UK access to private e-mail and mobile phone records.  The proposals are to be put on hold indefinitely in the face of huge opposition, which the home secretary conceded his department totally failed to predict


Business Day
Administrators abuse low income earners - 20 June
Magistrates court administration orders intended to help low income borrowers in distress are instead being extensively abused by administrators who leave borrowers much worse off
High court rules against Oudekraal development - 21 June
SA's new constitution requires that property rights acquired in the apartheid era to be balanced against society's needs and other modern human rights.  This was a key consideration by Cape High Court Judge Dennis Davis when he ruled against the right of property developer Casper Wiehahn to develop an extensive nature reserve area near Camps Bay, Cape Town
Putting the court to its greatest test yet - 24 June
The Constitutional Court's response to the floor-crossing legislation will be the greatest test of its independence yet. To date the judges of the court have taken stands against government policy, but never challenged an issue as fundamental as deciding whether a party has a mandate to govern
Scorpions must probe Grootvlei - 21 June
The Law Society of SA has called for the Scorpions investigative unit to be included in the probe into allegations of corruption at Grootvlei Prison in Bloemfontein
Group urged to lobby Mbeki over domain bill - 11 June
More than 7000 members of an organisation representing technology professionals are being urged to lobby government for last minute changes to the controversial ecommerce bill
Ruling may have sold media a little short - 25 June
This month saw a definitive decision being handed down by the Constitutional Court. The Sunday World published a report about General Bantu Holomisa, the leader of the United Democratic Movement (UDM), in which, among other allegations, the newspaper suggested he was involved with a gang of bank robbers and under police investigation. He sued the newspaper. Judge Kate O'Regan, on behalf of a unanimous court, decided that the constitution does apply to disputes of this nature where private parties (and not the state) are involved
Advertisers who send spam may face the music - 13 June
Advertisers who insist on sending intrusive e-mail and cellphone messages risk a fine or jail term under SA's proposed e-commerce legislation
Spoornet executives' day of reckoning - [28 June]
Today marks the start of Transnet's disciplinary inquiry into alleged wrongdoing in a property deal by Spoornet CEO Zandile Jakavula and Chain Vilakazi, head of property management at the rail utility


Business Report
Minister shrugs off internet fears - 26 June
Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri, the communications minister, has shrugged off "irrational fears" about the government wanting to control the internet as she successfully steered her controversial Electronic Communication and Transactions Bill through parliament
Manuel to get tough on pension funds - 7 June
By the time exchange controls were scrapped, they would have been replaced with tougher rules for institutional investors, Trevor Manuel, the minister of finance, warned


CNet News
From Microsoft, a new Office, Tablet PCs - 25 June
Microsoft, looking to expand its desktop software monopoly into new areas, announced plans for a new version of its cash cow, Office, and the launch of the first Tablet PC systems
Your PC's enemy within - 26 June
Spyware, adware controversies show why Net needs new laws.  Three part series
Police database brings feature searching - 27 June
In Arizona and Los Angeles, police are replacing law enforcement mainstays such as mug shots and lineups of suspects with technology some call Mr Potato Head.  The photographic database and facial recognition systems, called Crime Capture and CrimeWeb, allow investigators to pick different types of facial features to search databases for criminals. It's not unlike the toy famous for allowing kids to change body parts on a potato, police said


Dispatch Online
Govt should only look at ­ Rhodes expert - 20 June
Rhodes University's technology information (IT) director Francois Jacot-Guillarmod says the government is looking in the wrong place in its efforts to take control of the Internet in South Africa
Internet gurus fear Bill will erode privacy - 20 June
The government's attempt to control the Internet in South Africa, has been deemed to erode an individual's right to privacy
Prison video ample evidence ­ law society - 24 June
The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) said last night that the video depicting scenes of corruption in jail should be admissible as evidence because it was a similarly-made video to that which helped convict policemen who set dogs on illegal immigrants


Financial Times
Reasons to think before you link - 24 June
But as the web has become an increasingly important channel for commercial activity, so the principle of linking has come into conflict with other considerations - and recent court cases suggest that anyone linking to third-party sites without due caution could fall foul of the law


Globe and Mail
Earth faces supply crisis, study finds - 25 June
It would take 15 months for the planet to regenerate the natural capital that humanity uses in a year and that disparity is widening, according to the first comprehensive, science-based estimate of human demands on the biological functions of the Earth


Placing Big Brother on wrong side of the law - 2 June
A new code will make it more difficult for employers to justify snooping on their staff


The Herald
Disgraced lawyer linked to fraud claims
Controversial former Durban attorney Linda Zama has been linked to a Port Elizabeth company which finds itself in the centre of multi-million rand fraudulent claims


Who will defend them? - 25 June
Defence lawyers are under attack again, accused by Lord Falconer of underhand delaying tactics and ruthless cross-examinations. How did they become the bogeymen of the criminal justice system? And do they deserve to be?
Strasbourg votes to ban cosmetics tested on animals - 12 June
MEPs put European Union governments under massive pressure to agree tough new rules for the cosmetics industry yesterday by voting for a Europe-wide ban on the sale of products tested on animals anywhere in the world


Independent Online (IOL)
Sacked DA nine get their jobs back - for now  - 26 June
The Cape High Court gave nine Democratic Alliance councillors their jobs back for at least the next month, pending a full hearing in court of the circumstances around their axing from the party
'Wait now, fly later' as UDM floors new laws - 24 June
A full bench of the Cape High Court on Monday afternoon ruled in favour of the United Democratic Movement's application that South Africa's defection laws be put on hold until the Constitutional Court could rule on their constitutionality
Mixed reaction to defection law judgment - 24 June
Although some political parties on Monday expressed their delight that the floor-crossing legislation has been put on hold, government vowed to fight the issue when it came before the Constitutional Court
Defectees barred from KZN legislature - 24 June
Five KwaZulu-Natal members of the provincial legislature (MPLs) who defected to the African National Congress have been prevented from sitting, participating, or voting in the provincial legislature, pending a court ruling on the constitutionality of the defection legislation
High Court judge puts defection laws on hold - 20 June
A Cape High Court Judge ruled late on Thursday night that the crossing of the floor legislation which was to have come into effect at midnight should be put on hold until a full bench of the Court had heard the matter
Child sex abuse report released - 19 June
Mandatory reporting of child sex offences, more lottery funds for child protection services, and the criminalising of all sexual relations with males under 16 years of age as statutory rape are among more than 100 far-reaching recommendations made by parliament's task team on child sex abuse
Healthy cereal ... or serial child abuse? - 7 June
Healthy breakfast or promoter of violence against children? That's what the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has been considering after a number of complaints about a ProNutro TV ad
Legal eagles swoop in to tighten rape laws - 15 June
Sex laws and legal procedure are being tightened to ensure that rapists do not escape justice on a technicality and that rape suspects are subjected to compulsory HIV/Aids tests
Grootvlei prisoners stop their transfer - 21 June
The Bloemfontein High Court has granted an urgent application that four inmates of the Grootvlei prison - who exposed jail conditions by means of secretly-made video recordings - not to be moved to another prison
Lawyer tells corruption probe of 'influence' - 19 June
An independent lawyer who presided over a number of disciplinary hearings at Durban transport for a year alleged he was influenced by management to find guilty and dismiss innocent workers
Victims launch court bid against TRC - 26 June
Of all the people HF Verwoerd might have imagined apartheid victims taking to court, Desmond Tutu and top ANC leaders would surely be the unlikeliest.  But that's exactly what happened when the Khulumani support group of victims of gross human rights violations filed an application with the Cape High Court.  The victims are demanding access to information held by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC)
Teenager sentenced to 28 years in prison - 10 June
A High Court judge in Pietermaritzburg has sentenced a 17-year-old youth to an effective 28 years in prison for the murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances of 88-year-old Catherine Victor in her home last May
Shot dead : the cop who never carried a gun - 12 June
Leon Neville Josias was a rare South African policeman - he never carried a gun, fearing the law was unclear about when he could shoot during an arrest. But his stand may have cost him his life
Internet users relax : .za domain is safe - 21 June
South African Internet users have nothing to fear about the location of the Internet route file, says the "father of the Internet" in South Africa, Mike Lawrie
Domain name debacle 'still not resolved' - 11 June
Talks are on the cards to resolve the tussle over Internet domain administration in South Africa, the parties concerned said
Big brother fears, but .za's staying online - 7 June
Mike Lawrie, the administrator of the .za domain on the Internet, denies he will shut it down
Give us our pensions at 60 too, say men - 20 June
Irate pensioners have gone to the Cape High Court because women may claim state pensions at the age of 60, five years before men at 65
No 'dog maintenance' in this courtroom - 7 June
A dog called Alice - and her expensive needs - was the subject of some discussion during a divorce hearing in the Durban High Court


Internet Society calls for crypto civil obedience - 18 June
The issue of control over the .za domain space may be hogging the limelight, but the Electronic Communications and Transactions (ECT) Bill which triggered the dispute contains other provisions more worrying to many IT experts
Govt slammed Namespace ‘by mistake'
The Ministry of Communications says a statement by it, which launched a scathing attack on the Namespace ZA organisation, was published by mistake and does not represent the views of Communications Minister Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri

Entire firm can lose coverage if lawyer lies on application form - 10 June
A law firm's legal malpractice policy can be rescinded if a partner lies on the application, despite the other partners' claims of being "innocent insureds," the Superior Court Appellate Division ruled


Mail and Guardian
Victory for UDM, defections on ice - 24 June
A full bench of the Cape High Court ruled in favour of the United Democratic Movement's (UDM) application that South Africa's defection laws be put on hold until the Constitutional Court could rule on their constitutionality
Court to decide on defection debacle - 24 June
The hopes and fears of politicians across the country lie with the Cape High Court on Monday, as it weighs up the United Democratic Movement's (UDM) challenge to the defection legislation
Defectors feel parties' wrath - 24 June
Five KwaZulu-Natal MPLs who defected to the African National Congress (ANC) have been prevented from sitting, participating, or voting in the provincial legislature, pending the court ruling on the constitutionality of the defection legislation
SA's musical chairs legislation ready this week - 18 June
Legislation allowing public representatives at all three governmental tiers to change party allegiance without losing their seats is expected to complete its parliamentary passage this week
ZA domain name row hots up - 13 June
Mike Lawrie, administrator of the ZA domain on the internet, said he had moved a major control mechanism abroad until stability returned to the issue of who controlled the domain
'The Internet belongs to no-one' - 7 June
Communications Minister, Ivy Matesepe-Casaburri, tried to reassure critics that she had no intention of controlling electronic commerce in South Africa through powers granted to her in the controversial e-commerce bill
Rural land restitution goes for broke in KZN - 14 June
Thabi Shange, KwaZulu-Natal's regional land claims commissioner, is building a reputation as a tough decision-maker who delivers land in big portions and attracts big investments. She is on contract to deliver on the Land Restitution Act and to do so as fast as possible
Land invasions are inevitable - 21 June
This week the beneficiaries of apartheid launched a bid to remove a critically-placed brick from the shaky edifice of post-apartheid land reform. The brick - the state's right to expropriate land for land reform - is all that stands between the promise of orderly land reform and the prospect of desperate actions by the poor and landless to secure land through their own effort
In search of a better deal for informal workers - 21 June
Government officials, workers and employers assembled in Geneva for the 19th annual International Labour Conference this month to find solutions to the problems facing workers who fall outside labour regulation. South Africa was represented by the Congress of South African Trade Unions and two independent worker rights activists : Pat Horn, the coordinator of StreetNet, an international alliance of street-trader organisations, and Khoboso Nthunya of the South African Self-Employed Women's Union
Justice reaches into the confessional - 11 June
The application of a woman, sentenced to life imprisonment, for special leave to appeal against an earlier court ruling was refused in the Constitutional Court. Rethea Bierman was convicted of murder and of two other offences relating to the unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition by the Pretoria High Court. he has said that her constitutional rights were infringed when the High Court allowed a priest, who heard her confession, to testify in the trial
Oh, the indignity of it all ... - 21 June
If I said Judge Kate O'Regan had a beautiful mind, would she use it against me? . . .  The question arises because of an important judgement handed down by the Constitutional Court last week, written by Judge O'Regan, in which the issue of dignity - and its constitutional protection - plays a central role


SA's digital Boston Tea Party - 14 June
One of the most remarkable acts of rebellion in South Africa's history has just occurred. Mike Lawrie, the administrator who ensures that dot.ZA suffixed e-mail addresses and Web sites are visible to the world, has moved control of the system out of the country to prevent nationalisation of the namespace


Natal Witness
Warders given life sentences for Bhengu's murder - 22 June
Two Pietermaritzburg Prison warders were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering Correctional Services human resources director Thuthu Bhengu in June last year
Sex offenders register considered
Parliament's task group on the sexual abuse of children has stopped short of calling for the establishment of a register of sexual offenders, saying the matter should be investigated further
Draft land rights bill presents 'big challenge' - 28 June
The "devil might live inside" various sections of the draft Communal Land Rights Bill (CLRB), but at least government is starting to listen to civil society's hands-on experiences with previous land legislation.  This was the verdict at the close of a two-day workshop convened by the Association for Rural Advancement (Afra) to allow grassroots input from a diverse group of non-governmental (NGO) and community-based organisations (CBO), lawyers and academics
Abused wife pleads guilty - 27 June
A woman pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of her abusive husband, saying she paid an inyanga (traditional healer) R15 000 to ensure that the man was killed. She told the Pietermaritzburg High Court that her husband once locked her in a room for three days with a dead 2,5 metre leguaan
Crossing the floor - 14 June
From early on in South Africa's relatively new democratic dispensation, many people found reason to regret the provision that parliamentarians could not cross the floor without losing their seats. It was felt that this inflexible system was not sufficiently responsive to the shifting tides of political opinion
Major KZN political shuffle likely - 14 June
Speculation is rife that a major political reshuffle is on the cards for KZN with expectations that 15 members of the IFP are to join the ANC during the floor-crossing window period



15 new planets - 14 June

Astronomers have come a step closer to finding a solar system in deep space that is similar to our own. US researchers have identified 15 new 'extrasolar' planets, some of which have similar characteristics to those orbiting our Sun

Holomisa fears violence - 27 June
United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader Bantu Holomisa has told the country's highest court that the controversial floor-crossing legislation could lead to political violence in KwaZulu-Natal
Maduna called second judge - 27 June
The dark cloud hanging over the head of Dr Penuell Maduna, minister of justice, on Thursday darkened even further when it was confirmed that he had phoned a second Cape Supreme Court judge late on Thursday evening in connection with the court battle over the controversial floor-crossing laws
'Don't jump the defection gun' - 11 June
Parliamentarians wishing to defect to another party were warned by National Assembly Speaker Dr Frene Ginwala not to jump the gun, as they risked losing their seats
OK to seize asset without notice - 12 June
The Constitutional Court found on Wednesday that it was not unconstitutional for the Forfeiture Unit to seize property possibly obtained through the proceeds of organised crime without giving the owner prior notice
US, German firms new targets - 23 June
German banks Dresdner and Deutsche and US computer firm IBM are the next targets of lawsuits seeking huge sums in reparations for victims of apartheid, a lawyer for the case said
Prison not an 'internet cafe' - 20 June
A convicted murderer, who believes access to the internet is his constitutional right, was told in the Pretoria Supreme Court that prison is not an internet cafe
Big brother is watching - 23 June
How much do you think your employer would pay to make sure that you did not spend half your day browsing an online book store, watching sports, or downloading music files - and that you never spent your working hours at a porn site?
Justice's 'absurd' salary revamp - 7 June
The salary of the national deputy director of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has to increase by R1 million to R1.4 million per annum, while that of a junior state prosecutor has to drop from R63 000 to R36 000. These recommendations by consultants have been included in a new proposed salary structure for the Department of Justice. The recommendations caused a stir among prosecutors, magistrates and state attorneys this week, who believe that the suggestions are "absurd"


Apartheid suit faces hurdles, reparations row - 18 June
A multi-billion dollar suit against Swiss and US banks on behalf of victims of apartheid faces daunting legal hurdles and has fuelled debate over who should pay for the sins of white-ruled South Africa. More than 500 South Africans called a telephone hotline on its first day to join a $50 billion class action suit to be filed soon in a New York court by Edward Fagan, a US lawyer known for his controversial tactics


The Scotsman
Lawyers to face fines for appeal delays - 18 June
awyers face being fined or banned from practice under radical new proposals to cut down on excessive and costly delays in the appeal court


 Sunday Times
* Online system speeds up courts - 23 June
The Durban Magistrate's Court will become the first in the world to go online when it completes its integrated case management system next month
Plea-bargaining cuts court red tape - 23 June
The Western Cape is leading the way in thrashing out new plea-bargaining agreements, which are boosting state coffers and helping to clear the backlog of cases awaiting trial
Court's floor-crossing ban may have come too late - 23 June
The government will tomorrow ask a Full Bench of the Cape High Court to set aside the ruling it made on Thursday to suspend defection legislation, and clear the way for floor-crossing by public representatives
Advocates work for free to do justice - 16 June
South Africa's top advocates will be offering their services as acting judges and prosecutors for free in an attempt to ease the huge backlog of more than 200 criminal appeal cases. At least 56 advocates from KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, some earning up to R30 000 a day, will give up their July recess to help the embattled Justice Department
Renowned lawyer praises Constitutional Court - 16 June
One of South Africa's most prominent lawyers, now practising in England, has paid tribute to the Constitutional Court, saying he found it an "overwhelming" experience to serve as one of its members. However, he was less flattering about some aspects of the new mechanism for choosing South African judges.  Giving a prestigious lecture in Cambridge, Sir Sydney Kentridge examined the process of choosing judges for the highest court in Britain
Attorneys suspended over trust funds - 9 June
A firm of attorneys was suspended from practising until a probe into their trust account has been completed


Washington Post
Does ruling signal shift in thinking? - 25 June
For more than 10 years, from the late 1980s until recently, death-sentenced inmates won virtually no major victories in the US Supreme Court or elsewhere. The political climate tilted dramatically in favor of capital punishment, and the pace of executions quickened to the fastest rate in nearly half a century. Recently, however, the climate has changed
Web thinkers warn of culture clash - 21 June
The Internet's potential for promoting expression and empowering citizens is under threat from corporate and government policies that clash with the medium's long-standing culture of openness, some leading Internet thinkers warned
A global audience, a world of worries? - 19 June
Australian Court's ruling in libel case could have a chilling effect on Web publications
Justice Dept seeks High Court review in 'Net filtering case - 20 June
In a case that tests the limits of constitutional free speech rights on the Internet, the Bush administration asked the US Supreme Court to uphold a law that denies federal funds for public libraries that allow patrons to look at pornographic Web sites
ICANN, dotted with doubts - 20 June
Role as domain-name manager in danger as criticism grows
Web porn ruling filters down - 18 June
Role of censor shifted from libraries to parents


Washington Times
Asbestos overload - 19 June
An avalanche of asbestos lawsuits — many filed by people who are not extremely sick — is overwhelming courts and threatening companies even though the cancer-causing substance has not been widely used in the United States for almost 30 years




  Making search engines work for YOU 

Have you tried using Google to locate SA documents?  One can narrow the options down remarkably using the Advanced Search facility.

Eg with legislation : by typing in the full name of a Statute/ Bill/... in the "all of the words" window and inserting ".za" in the domain window, you should be given a list of SA websites which house a copy of that particular document or refer to it.

I've used the Advanced Search to locate documents on our own sites : by typing in, eg, "Journal articles of interest" in the "all of the words" window, "South African Journal of Human Rights" in the "exact phrase" window and "" in the domain window, Google returns a list of pages it has indexed, which in practical terms means it tells you in which InfoUpdates one can find an index to SAJHR.

If you would like to share any search tips with others, please send them to


  New viruses on the block 

McAfee has increased the risk assessment of a virus named W32/Yaha.g@MM to medium risk for home users and explains that this mass-mailing worm attempts to disable anti-virus and firewall protection, leaving infected systems vulnerable.  See the McAfee website for more details

Another one to watch out for is transmitted through digital images - W32/Perrun.




  . . . a bizarre story 

At the 1994 annual awards dinner given for Forensic Science, AAFS President Dr Don Harper Mills astounded his audience with the legal complications of a bizarre death.

Here is the story.

On March 23, 1994 the medical examiner viewed the body of Ronald Opus and concluded that he died from a shotgun wound to the head.  Mr Opus had jumped from the top of a ten-storey building intending to commit suicide. He left a note to the effect indicating his despondency. As he fell past the ninth floor his life was interrupted by a shotgun blast passing through a window, which killed him instantly.

Neither the shooter nor the deceased was aware that a safety net had been installed just below the eighth floor level to protect some building workers and that Ronald Opus would not have been able to complete his suicide the way he had planned.

"Ordinarily," Dr Mills continued, "A person who sets out to commit suicide and ultimately succeeds, even though the mechanism might not be what he intended, is still defined as committing suicide."

That Mr Opus was shot on the way to certain death, but probably would not have been successful because of the safety net, caused the medical examiner to feel that he had a homicide on his hands. 

In the room on the ninth floor, where the shotgun blast emanated, was occupied by an elderly man and his wife.
They were arguing vigorously and he was threatening her with a shotgun. The man was so upset that when he pulled the trigger he completely missed his wife and the pellets went through the window striking Mr Opus.

When one intends to kill subject "A" but kills subject "B" in the attempt, one is guilty of the murder of subject "B".

 When confronted with the murder charge the old man and his wife were both adamant and both said that they thought the shotgun was unloaded. The old man said it was a long-standing habit to threaten his wife with the
unloaded shotgun. He had no intention to murder her.
Therefore the killing of Mr Opus appeared to be an

that is, if the gun had been accidentally loaded.

The continuing investigation turned up a witness who saw the old couple's son loading the shotgun about six weeks prior to the fatal accident. It transpired that the old lady had cut off her son's financial support and the son, knowing the propensity of his father to use the shotgun threateningly, loaded the gun with the expectation that his father would shoot his mother. Since the loader of the gun was aware of this, he was guilty of the murder even though he didn't actually pull the trigger. The case now becomes one of murder on the part of the son for the death of Ronald Opus.

Now comes the exquisite twist.

Further investigation revealed that the son was, in fact, Ronald Opus. He had become increasingly despondent over the failure of his attempt to engineer his mother's murder. This led him to jump off the ten story building on March 23rd, only to be killed by a shotgun blast passing through the ninth story window.

The son had actually murdered himself so the medical examiner closed the case as a suicide.

(A true story from Associated Press, Reported by Kurt Westervelt)






  telephone: 031-301 1621
033-345 1304
033-342 4064 (Pmb a/h)


Return to InfoUpdate Index