Monday, November 06, 2006

For the third edition of the unlicenced project we were asked by our editor Raeesa to come up with solutions to South Africa's current drivers licence problem.For this particular project I worked with Siyabonga Nkabinde, Manelisi Ndhovu and Thaba Mchunu.This was the group I was in for this project.As the reseacher I did random interviews with people about possible solutions to our country's current drivers licence problem.From these interviews and the experiences of my friends I decided to explore an alternative whereby leaners licence programs are introduced in high schools.My completed research work was given to the writer Siyabonga Nkabinde.Together with our other group members Siya submitted our solutions to the drivers licence problem to Unlicenced.

Friday, October 27, 2006

This is the 1st article that I worked on with my group (Siya,Thaba, Manelisi and Matalimo)for the unlicenced project.Our focus was on the drivers licence project and its effect on society.My role in this project was to be the researcher together with Matalimo.Aside from asking driving instructors about the new licence legislation that states that people must apply for a drivers licence test nearest to they're place of residence,I also did online research and I found an article on iol online on this new legislation.This particular article focuses on the effect that this new legislation has had on drivers testing instructors and testing centres in Durban (http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=13&art_id=vn20060726013719152C858419
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I used this article from iol online as part of my research and I handed in my completed research to Siya Nkabinde our writer.I then submitted the complete work of our whole group to http://unlicensed.humsci.ukzn.ac.za/?q=node/51 .

Monday, October 23, 2006

Interview Questions(MM Dlamini 206508376)

1) Does Effingham Secondary have a drivers/learners licensing system?

2)If not what would happen if the school subsidized a course to have drivers/learners license tests for learners under 17?

3) Do you think that such a system would work?

4) Do you have a learners or drivers license.?

5) Do you think that we in Durban have an efficient license testing centre ?

6) To the possible problems of drivers licensing in SA do you have any solutions.?

Answers to interview Questions

Student Name: Thabiso Mthembu

School: Effingham Secondary High School

Grade: 11

Answers to Questions;

1) No

2) That option might work ,but we have our own issues to deal with like stress,exams,peer pressure and school fees.

3) Yeah! It might work if government stepped in and offered us money and skills resources to help implement the system at our school.

4) Neither

5)I’m not sure because I have not been to the testing centre or have applied for a drivers licence.However some of my friends in Matric have done it. Generally they say it was okay but with the new electronic system it’s a bit difficult to get a license.

6)I don’t know, but government could help by giving money to schools, so that schools can give students under the age of 17 a chance to do a drivers license.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Most of our high schools don’t have a drivers learning program.
Why is this so?

After thoroughly investigating and researching schools in and around Kwa-Zulu Natal, it came to our understanding that a high majority of our schools don’t have a properly structured program where students can be introduced to the rules of the road and driving at an early age. In a country like this where there is a daily increase of unemployment it is astounding to come to the realization that there is such a high majority of schools without a learning program such as this. Even with the implementation of the outcomes based education (OBE) method of teaching it saddens that none of our highly paid government officials within the education ferternity could conceive the importants of a drivers license as a core prerequisite for employment.

Since this issue was revealed to us as university students we have taken it upon ourselves to go out and investigate this issue in anticipation of getting questions that matter answered and possibly raising awareness that will count in advantage to young people currently in school, in that they not only matriculate with a certificate, but also with a drivers license which will widen their opportunities and not to mention the relieving of stress that comes with struggling for a license at a later stage in life.

Thabiso Mthembu 17 is student at Effingham secondary school current in grade 11. Thabiso is one of the many Effingham secondary pupils who see the need of a learners and drivers learning program in his school. In an interview Thabiso assured us of there being no program such as the one mentioned above running at his school and after being briefly told about this program and asked if it would work at his school, he confidently replied and said “yeah! it would work if the government stepped in and offered us money, skills and resources to help implement the program at our school”. After being hyped up and excited about this program when Thabiso was asked why such a program wasn’t being offered at his school he said “I’m honestly not sure why we don’t have this program, maybe it’s because we don’t have resources and properly trained teachers for this particular program, but I’m honestly not sure, its best you speak to people in management of this school”, and after replying “no to neither” after being asked if he had any one of the two a learners or drivers license, Thabiso went on to say that now he feels discouraged about a drivers license since he might have been passed by a golden opportunity of getting his license whilst in school. After the interview with Thabiso an understanding of how much a minor set back in an individuals life really dawned on us.

In further investigating this issue an anonymous staff member from Brettonwood High School spoke to one of our investigators. When the staff member was asked if a program such as one mentioned above was running at this school she said “no, not any more, but a program similar to this one use to be available to learners”, in a twist of events questions prepared by our investigator changed to suit the unexpected response given above, she was further asked why the program stopped running she replied “students were abusing the cars and frequently they would get stolen since this school is situated in a high crime risk area”, and when asked if it were possible to bring the program back since it’s necessity was so obvious she said “yes it would be possible to bring the program back, but it would take a lot more effort from the governments side in terms of security and maintenance of the cars since the task of running such a program was evidently to much for a school individually”. The anonymous stuff member went on to say that reintroducing the program in the school and implementing it across South Africa would take a long time since government would take their own time as it has with the new computerized cars, which were said to be in every licensing centre, but are only still at Rossburgh. It is obvious that teachers and learners especially, would appreciate a program such as this at their schools which is saddening that people who probably have their drivers licenses are refusing young people an opportunity to do the same at an early age.

The information obtained from the interviews conducted above clearly shows that there is no one reason why there are no learners and drivers license learning programs in our schools. Majority of the problem lies in the slacking government, poor school management and immoral social behaviour in schools and in areas where schools are located and for change and development to occur in this particular situation, there needs to be change in negative influencing factors first.


Manelisi Ndlovu - Writer
Siyabonga Nkabinde - Interviewer
Mlungisi Dlamini - Interviewer
Thaba Mchunu - Researcher

This week we had a task to come up with new ideas on the next newsportal publication.our group leader Raaesa came up with the idea of focusing on schools.Thus in order to lessen her workload as group editor we, broke up into groups.Our group(Siya,Manelisa,Thabo and Michael) focused on schools.Siya and I were the two interviewers,Thaba was the reseacher and Manelisi the writer.On the 17th of October 2006 I interviewed a student named Thabiso near the Redhill train station in North coast road in Durban North.It was at about 3:00pm and there were a lot of high school students waiting for transportation.Thabiso atttended Effingham Secondary High School and I asked him about his thoughts on drivers licencing in S.A.There was communication and I wrote down his answers to my questions on my notepad.Friday the 20th of October 2006 I handed in my prepared interview questions and answers to Mannelisa our writer so that he could use my work for his essay to be handed in to our group editor by Monday 23rd of October 2006.

Monday, October 09, 2006

How has the transformation of acquiring a driver’s license affected society?

A drivers license today is one of the core prerequisites for employment, not only in South Africa, but across the world. It is therefore important that the system and procedure of acquiring a license is strictly and properly managed. With all the changes that have occurred at licensing centers around South Africa, I guess the real question is “has the transformation in the process of acquiring a drivers license affected society, and if so, how?”

It’s clear that the new procedure of obtaining a drivers license is affecting society in different ways. To gain some depth on this issue Mr S. Ndlovu was interviewed, because he had the opportunity of experiencing both the old and the new procedure of acquiring his driver’s license. “The new procedure is much better because there is lesser opportunity for corruption and unfair treatment”, he told our interviewer. Mr Ndlovu also went on to say that there is now no more room for error since there is no human intelligence involved in this process therefore what you get is totally dependant on your performance in whichever test you are doing and not on the officers experience or knowledge.

Public impression in the local press is given that the new system does not accommodate the needs and expectations of those who are in need of a driver's license. Most people think that it is better if the test is not computerized because a computer is just a machine, programmed for perfection with no room for error, whereas if an instructor was in control, he is more flexible and not confined to exact measures. This is not to say that instructors should be blind to the mistakes of those tested and/or rely on bribery to further their own personal interests. With human beings, there is no perfect and exact method of driving.

To equally represent two generations' view on this topic, Mr B. Ngcobo, who worked as a driving instructor for more than seven years was interviewed. Speaking from experience, Mr Ngcobo argued differently to Mr Ndlovu, in that the old method was better then the current method. To support his argument Mr Ngcobo said that “the new method of acquiring a license was done through computer and therefore could not be trusted, since computers were just mere man-made machine which could malfunction at any time and end up causing more harm than good when testing learner drivers”. Mr Ngcobo also went on to say that he was utterly disgusted that officials at testing centers con learners applying for drivers tests by initiating bribes in order to get earlier test dates or preferential treatment. Driving school instructors are no longer allowed to register for their students’ tests and bookings must be done by the applicants themselves.

To add insult to injury the new drivers licensing legislation (where people have to go to test centers which are near their area of residence) has come under a lot of criticism mainly from driving instructors who have lost a lot of business because of the new legislation. An instructor who was interviewed said that the main problem he has is that when clients come in to learn how to drive he has to turn their business down because proof of residence is not supplied. Because the clients are not aware of the new legislation, instructors end up losing a lot of business. However he strongly feels that the government is fooling around with legislation without consulting the relevant stakeholders.

After all the pro’s and con’s have being taken into account, and having interviewed a diverse range of individuals on the topic at hand it shows that the new system might have more cons then was initially thought. This is shown in the large number of failures within the Rossburgh testing grounds.

Writer - Siyabonga Nkabinde

Interviewer – Manelisi Ndlovu

- Thaba Mchunu

Researches – Michael Mlungisi

- Matalimo Selebalo

Friday, September 15, 2006

Thursday, September 14, 2006

It seems that the drug resistant killer TB strain has shown up in Gauteng according to this Mail &Guardian article.When it comes to diseases like TB it is essential that the government increase awareness of these diseases especialy in rural areas so that when people are sick or suspect that they have TB,they can than find the neccessary channels to get medication.

http://www.mg.co.za/articlepage.aspx?area=/breaking_news/breaking_news__national/&articleid=284061
The article is about the former arpartheid operative Wouter Bason and the fact that even though he was officially discharged by the army in 1999 he still gets a R50 000 once a month salary.This is pointless because he was suspended by the SANDF in 1999(according to the Mail&Guardian).If my information is correct it is not neccessary to continue paying an individual who has been suspended from the military for a numberb of years R50 000 a month that is an unneccessary use of taxpayers money.