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COVID-19 infections at schools cause concern

Some schools have decided to close down for two weeks to curb further infections.

As provinces like the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal are still battling with the third wave of COVID-19 infections, parents and certain government officials are concerned about the fact that schools are turning into hotspots for infections.

Last week, Grey College in Bloemfontein decided to close its doors for an early recess due to a spike in infections in the school. Nearly 60 pupils reported positive Coronavirus tests, which prompted the swift action from the school.

In the Western Cape, schools like Bellville High School have also voiced their concern with growing numbers of students who have tested positive. In a video released by the headmaster which GoBinge has seen, it was explained that the school’s governing body held an emergency meeting to ascertain how to handle the situation. Bellville High School decided to stop all sport and cultural activities and have introduced more measures to ensure learners follow health protocols. 

Sihle Zikalala, the premier of KwaZulu-Natal has also expressed his concern with the growing number of infections at schools. He referred to the spike in cases in schools as a cluster of infections during a media briefing held on Sunday. 

“We have also noticed an increase in cluster cases with schools being the biggest contributor in this regard. In fact, more than 120 schools have reported clusters in their school settings and more than 800 learners and teachers have been affected.”

It appears that the situation in other provinces is not much different. In East London, several schools have reported a major increase in positive cases among learners. Some schools have also opted to close for a few days while decontamination teams disinfect classrooms. TimesLive reports that 89 schools in this province have reported active cases of Coronavirus.

Both the provincial and national government has been quiet about any official ways to mitigate the situation. The Delta variant of COVID-19 is understood to be much more infectious in children than previous variants of the virus.

Some parents are rallying for the government to announce a nationwide closure of schools.


Popular amapiano artists killed in car crash

Several tributes have been made for the duo.

This week, two of South Africa’s most popular amapiano stars tragically died in a car crash on their way to a gig in Rustenburg. Since the accident, tributes have poured in for Mpura and Killer Kau.

Initial reports contained a bit of fake news, claiming that Kabza De Small also died in the accident. He, however, took to social media to reassure fans that he is very much alive.

Reports to The Star, a local newspaper, confirm that 5 people were travelling in the car that crashed, including Mpura and Killer Kau. Further details on the accident and how exactly it happened remain unclear at this stage. 

Kau, whose real name is Sakhile Hlatshwayo, made waves in the amapiano genre after a Twitter video he posted went viral. In the video, he performed the single Thol’ Ukuthi Hey, which became his most popular hit and the one he will certainly be remembered for.

DJ Euphonik saw the potential in Kau and took him under his wing. He even invited him to use his home studio to record tracks. The two also performed together at various nightclubs.

Amapiano stars Mr JazziQ, Uncle Vinny, and Lady Du also gave tributes when they heard the news about Kau’s passing.

“I will never be the same again. God, what did we do, why Father, where will I get the strength, God? I’m beyond broken,” read Lady Du’s tweet.

Mpura recently broke into the amapiano genre. He was part of collaborations that saw many local hits being dropped, including Umsebenzi Wethu.

Riky Rick expressed his sadness and sympathy to Mpura’s family.

“Rest In Peace our Mpura. You were the happiest person in every room, your spirit was what we needed in our lives, selfless, humble, and loving. Love you so much, my brother. Thank you for everything you did while you were still here. Gonna miss you so much, bro. I’m sorry your journey had to end like this. Condolences to the family and the friends, we loved you so much, bro. Lala Kahle.”


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Hackers steal $610-million from the DeFi sector and are now returning it

They are also asking for donations as a sign of appreciation for their “good intentions”.

Hackers recently targeted a firm in the ever-growing decentralized finance sector (DeFi). In what is being called the largest cryptocurrency heist in history, hackers stole about $610-million from the DeFi protol known as PolyNetwork. It is not entirely clear who owns the PolyNetwork protocol, but they definitely have a large amount of wealth in crypto.

In a bizarre twist to this tale, the hackers have started returning the money to the firm. In a message the unidentified hackers said that they “just dumped all the assets,” adding, “hacking for good, I did save the project.”

About $260 million has been returned so far, according to Tom Robinson, co-founder of blockchain forensics firm Elliptic.

To add insult to injury, the hackers have openly asked for donations in return for their good intentions of returning the money they stole. It is understood that they will return the rest of the money in increments as well.

The hackers also posted a Q&A online, explaining motivations for the attack as “for fun:).” The pirates said they took the funds “to keep it safe” after spotting a bug in the computer code. They also encouraged agencies to not even try to find them, because they are impossible to trace. “I prefer to stay in the dark and save the world.”

Blockchain security researcher SlowMist, has said that it did, in fact, find the hackers’ IP addresses, emails and digital fingerprints. This is, however, not yet confirmed.

PolyNetwork said in a letter posted Tuesday on Twitter that thousands of people have been affected by the heist.

“This demonstrates that even if you can steal crypto assets, laundering them and cashing out is extremely difficult, due to the transparency of the blockchain and the use of blockchain analytics,” Robinson said. “In this case the hacker concluded that the safest option was just to return the stolen assets.”

Local designer’s clothes worn by international artist, Miley Cyrus

She was seen sporting a Thebe Magugu ensemble on Instagram.

South African designers have already proved that they are worthy of a spot on the international stage. If you need proof of that, just look at Miley Cyrus who was recently spotted wearing an outfit by acclaimed local designer, Thebe Magugu.


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A post shared by Thebe Magugu (@thebemagugu)

Miley was seen on Instagram wearing a pink suit from the Thebe Magugu Doublethink Spring/Summer 2022 – the first full menswear collection created by the label. Last month, this hot new capsule was launched at the Pitti Uomo fashion show.

The collection was created  to challenge the various forms of corruption that exist throughout Africa.

“In many ways, the societal ills the continent wrestles with stem from the insidious actions of its leaders,” says the Thebe Magugu website.

“In South Africa, we have regularised the daily tales of missing millions and economy-controlling families. These stories become dinner-time anecdotes, which minimizes the devastating ramifications that corruption holds – from increased gaps in education and equality to the mismanagement of public goods and services, which often always morphs into violence.

“Corruption is a global issue, which defeats the ends of justice and deters a country’s sense of safety and trust. However, some strong individuals have said ‘enough!’ – the brave women and men who have come forward as whistleblowers, who have exposed the level of corruption from companies and institutions both private and state.”

In many ways, when international stars wear locally designed clothes, the South African fashion scene gets a major boost. Not only do locals start to pay more attention to our homegrown brands, but international fashion lovers also start to look into these labels.

Kanye West has shared a new version of “Donda” in new Apple Music stream

The album can now be pre-ordered on iTunes, but it doesn’t have an album art just yet.  Kanye West is keeping the world in suspense as we await the release of his album, “Donda”. In the early hours of the morning (South African time), Apple Music put up a livestream of Kanye as he was in the final stages of finishing his album at the Mercedes stadium in Atlanta. Kanya recently moved into the stadium to focus his energy on the completion of the album.

Kanye started the stream in a minimal set, which was meant to look like his bedroom. In the background, one could see his small bed. The idea was to showcase him finishing the anticipated album. The album played tonight featured many previously shared songs with some updates and a different track order than last time. Young Thug and Kid Cudi made an appearance on a previously shared song that fans call “Remote.” The new album preview included new songs as well. One of these tracks include Lil Yachty and Lil Durk as guest artists. Track 20 also features the Weeknd and track 15 sees Kanye perform alongside Jay Electronica and the Lox. This preview was slightly more theatrical than the first one Kanye hosted. Kanye was eventually circled in the central stadium stage area by a crowd of bodies. The event ended with his single “No Child Left Behind,” at which point Kanye was flown hundreds of feet in the air.

Donda was originally set to release on 23 July. That date was postponed to 6 August. Interestingly, the album is now available for pre-order on the iTunes store, but it does not contain any track info or album art.

Xiaomi’s Mi MIX 4 officially releases on 10 August

This phone’s selfie camera is one of the most talked about features of the device..

Xiaomi has officially confirmed that their Mi MIX 4 smartphone will be available from 10 August. Xiaomi has become quite famous for their smartphones in recent years. So much, in fact, that they overtook Apple and bagged second place in the global Q2 rankings of the most popular smartphone brands. 

The hype around the release of the Mi 4 is a little more than one would usually expect. The main reason for this is the fact that so many leaks about the device have surfaced from China. Specifically, people have rumoured the release for months on end.

One of the most talked about features of the device is its selfie camera. Unlike traditional smartphones, the Mi 4’s selfie camera is not at the front of the device. Instead, Xiaomi opted to insert a smaller screen at the back of the phone, allowing users to take “selfies” with the quality of their proper camera attached also to the back of the device.

The main motivation for this is to ensure a 100% end-to-end screen on the front. Smartphone manufacturers have been trying to increase screen resolution and size as much as possible so that even marginal gains are now a win for these tech brands. 

Other features rumoured to be part of the Mi 4 is the ability to accept wireless charging. The phone is powered by Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 888+ chip, which means it should be pretty fast. 

Xiaomi is a fairly new brand in South Africa, but according to market experts, due to their low price and high-tech features, they should gain even more popularity in our local market.

You have to check out these 4 South African cosmetic brands!

Some of them even compete with top international brands.

If you love makeup and cosmetics, you’ll be pleased to hear that South Africa has a few brands that are major competitors in this industry. Some local brands are so popular that they even compete with top international makeup producers!

We have listed 5 unique South African cosmetics brands that you should pay close attention to and try to support.

Swiitch Beauty

Swiitch has described themselves as a brand that was born on the internet in an effort to solve problems. Their business model is to “crowdsource” issues that people face when it comes to beauty and then to develop solutions that work. They listen to feedback from their customers before heading off in search of some beauty product they can create to help people on their journey towards beauty.

They say that because they are an online brand, they can easily connect with their customers in a way that traditional retail focused brands cannot.
Visit their website here.

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Shades of Mink

This brand perfectly combines skincare and makeup products into one convenient cream. The creators of Shades of Mink have used their skills and knowledge to follow scientific methods to produce what has become one of their most popular products: their Luminizing Pudding.

It’s vegetarian friendly, natural based and is cruelty free. This cream gives your skin a natural-looking glow, while nourishing it at the same time. The brand has a firm commitment to ensuring their product works and has a high efficacy rating.

Visit their website here

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A post shared by MINK (@shadesofmink)

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A post shared by MINK (@shadesofmink)

Constance Beauty

This brand described itself as South Africa’s first homegrown luxury cosmetics brand. It focuses on producing high-end, quality products like skin care products, lipstick, lashes and more.

The brand was started by Constance Bhebhe, who was tired of being unable to find lipstick shades to compliment her skin-tone. She and her cousin joked that it might be easier for Constance to start her own cosmetics line instead of finding other products that actually work for her. The rest, it seems, is history.

Not only does Constance Beauty have a loyal customer base in South Africa, but they are also gaining traction in the United States of America.
Visit their website here.

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Honeydew Skincare

Korean skincare products have been gaining worldwide popularity due to the kind of results they produce and the fact that they seem to accommodate most skin types. Cape Town based student, Ansulette Bekker, decided to import some of these products into South Africa under her label, Honeydew Skincare. 

All of the products sold on Honeydew are tested by the owner of the brand personally to ensure that it is of the highest quality. On their website, Honeydew also aims to inform people about Korean beauty products, which is why they recently added an educational blog to their platform as well.
Visit their website here.

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More Zuma-related riots on the cards on 10 August

Police are worried that stolen ammunition may be used by protesters.

Over the weekend, reports have emerged that pro-Zuma supporters are planning yet another round of riots on the 10th of August. The ex-president is set to appear in court on that day. Police have voiced their concern that stolen ammunition might be used by the protestors.

The City Press reported that multiple insiders have confirmed that this riot will indeed take place. During the last round of riots and lootings that took place in KwaZulu-Natal and parts of Gauteng, ammo depots were looted, which are now believed to be in the hands of those who will take part in the upcoming protests. The Mail and Guardian has reported that the majority of the 14-tons of stolen ammo is still missing, although some of the bullets have been recovered. 

Last week, some of the stolen ammo was already used when perpetrators opened fire on police in Lamontville.

Zuma is currently serving a 15-month jail sentence for contempt of court after he failed to attend multiple hearings before the Zondo Commission. The hearing on the 10th will mark the start of his trial relating to a botched arms deal. The case will be heard in the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg.

He is facing 16 counts of corruption, racketeering, fraud, tax evasion, and money laundering. Zuma pleaded not guilty to all counts, which is why the case is now resulting in a full-on court battle. 

The ANC in the province appears helpless against the ongoing threats of violence and devastation running through the province. According to Rapport, the party has so many Zuma supporters that it is unable to act effectively against these concerns.

The police are apparently on high alert to avoid as much damage as possible on 10 August. 


Kanye’s “Donda” is set to release on 6 August

He recently moved into the Mercedes Stadium to finish the long-awaited, much-delayed album.

According to one of Kanye West’s representatives, the new date for the release of his album, “Donda” is now set for 6 August. 

The album was initially set to release last week after being delayed by more than a year. Kanye hosted a massive listening party where fans got the inside scoop of the new album and the reaction towards the music was excellent. 

Much to everyone’s disappointment, Kanye’s album did not get released at midnight that evening as anticipated. Instead, Kanye decided to move into the Mercedes stadium in Atlanta to finish the album. Clearly, this indicated that the rapper wasn’t satisfied with the work just yet and that there were parts that still needed to be recorded.

According to Kanye, he feels much more inspired in the stadium which is why he decided to move in and put all his energy into the creation of “Donda”. 

Kanye created a bedroom, recording studio and even hired a chef to make his new living arrangement as pleasant as possible. 

Recently, a representative has spoken to Variety to reveal that the album will drop on 6 August. 

“Donda” is dedicated to Kanye’s mother. It will feature a host of collabs, including a song that Kanye recorded with his mentor, Jay-Z. The duo had a long-standing feud which now seems to have been resolved as it is the first time in a while that they are actually heard sharing a music stage. 

Check out these clips of Kanye working on “Donda” below.

Memeza Shout, a black-woman-owned company, wins R100K at investment competition

They created South Africa’s first patented Public Alarm system.

Memeza Shout is a black-woman-owned company that has just won R100K at an investment competition. 

AYO Technology Solutions saw potential in the company, which has developed South Africa’s first patented public alarm system. The main idea behind this device is to fight crime, especially those against women, with the help of technology. 

The innovation makes use of a combination of physical alarms, neighbours, community safety groups and the South Africa Police Services to collectively fight crime.

“Private security doesn’t go into rural areas or townships but we do. So we have a huge market to cater for. We bring all stakeholders to fight crime. Tomorrow I can’t say police are useless because I know I would have the power to be involved in fighting crime,” said founder Thulile Mthethwa in an interview with IOL. 

She said that they decided to create a physical remote as the alarm, instead of an app. The main motivation for this is that criminals tend to go for a victim’s phone first, but remotes are generally not of much value and ignored. 

When one presses the device, it activates an alarm at all relevant parties, like community policing forums, armed response teams and even neighbourhood watch teams in your area to dispatch as many teams to assist as possible.

The ultimate goal is to improve the response rate of crime fighting bodies by notifying as many service providers in a particular area of a crime being committed. 

The investment they received at the AYO Scaling Africa Series will be used to further refine and develop their product. Eventually, they want to hit the mainstream market in South Africa and roll this device out to as many communities as possible. 

The AYO Scaling Africa Series is committed to finding noteworthy business ideas in Africa and helping them to reach new heights and make their ideas a reality.

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