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Court hears of man's desperate plea before farmer allegedly runs him over

The Hartswater Magistrate's Court heard on Wednesday how a man pleaded with a farmer to allow him to cut through his farm so that he could avoid protests, but that the farmer allegedly ran him over instead.

"I pleaded with Mr Van Niekerk to let us pass through," Shimmy Mosienyane told the court.

In the dock was the farmer, Johannes Petrus van Niekerk, who was applying for his release on bail, Netwerk24 reported.

"Van Niekerk said more than once that he didn't want k*****s on his farm and drove over us with his bakkie. He drove over me, but left when he saw there were eye witnesses," the court heard.

Van Niekerk, 63, is accused of attempted murder, crimen injuria and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm. He handed himself over to police on Monday.

Safety fears

He appeared in the dock while the Economic Freedom Fighters held a peaceful protest outside the court.

Mosienyana, who has had to have a back operation as a result of his injuries, was with a group at the time.

The incident allegedly happened last Friday during violent protests in Hartswater and Pampierstad.

Van Niekerk's advocate Sakkie Nel, said the protest outside court should not be a reason to deny Van Niekerk bail due to safety fears.

However, prosecutor James Dada told the court that Van Niekerk was a flight risk because he had initially fled before handing himself over three days later. The crime scene and his bakkie still had to undergo forensic testing.

The matter was postponed because the investigating officer was absent and could not testify whether he was able to take Mosienyana's statement at the time.

This, Nel described as unacceptable.

Source: News24
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Let’s Beat Procrastination Before Ramadan | ProductiveMuslim

Procrastination is the big daddy of productivity busters and seems to spare no one from its deadly clutches. It is something that we as humans fall for subconsciously at one time or the other.

As a child, I was always told by my beloved mother not to delay what is to be done to a later time as it is something that stems from carelessness and laziness. Procrastination is a habit that is difficult to shake off once developed.

I was always told:

‘Tomorrow’s work do today, today’s work now and now’s work immediately.’

In hindsight, I understand that it was and is one of the most valuable pieces of advice one could ever receive. Procrastination creates obstacles for you in every walk of life no matter what you are doing: be it studies, work, your religion or any other task at hand. If not dealt with early and effectively, procrastination becomes a way of life and keeps haunting you till you have no time left to do all the things you had or wanted to.

Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) says in the Qur’an:
“Until, when death comes to one of them, he says: “My Lord! Send me back so that I may do good in that which I have left behind” [Qur’an: Chapter 23, Verses 99-100]

With the precious month of Ramadan just around the corner, we must get serious about beating procrastination if we want to take full advantage of all the bumper rewards that Ramadan is packed with! Give yourself an immensely rewarding challenge: make the intention to beat procrastination before Ramadan, and resolve to start implementing these steps to beat procrastination from TODAY:

1. The Anti-Procrastination Dua
The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) gifted us a beautiful, comprehensive dua to ward off all kinds of mental stress and obstacles that prevent us from reaching our full potential in our spiritual and worldly lives. Memorize this brilliant dua, make it once or more times a day and immediately notice the difference in your productivity:

“Allahumma inni ‘a’udhubika minal hammi walhuzni, Wal’ajzi walkasali, walbukhli waljubni, Wa dal’id-daiyni wa ghalabatir-rajal.”

‘O Allah, I take refuge in You from anxiety and sorrow, weakness and laziness, miserliness and cowardice, the burden of debts and from being over powered by men.’

2. Sleep Early
All high achievers, beginning with the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) himself share one quality: going to bed early. Ramadan is a period where a Muslim must strive to be at his productive best. Start training yourself for Ramadan by going to bed early and practice waking up for Fajr so that you face less difficulty waking up when the holy month arrives. Fajr is a basic practice that we all need to adhere to throughout our daily lives but let us face it: how many of us do really wake up for Fajr? Making sleeping early a habit will ensure we wake up for Fajr, and will also ensure that we can wake up easily to have suhoor (pre-dawn meal) and fulfill a sunnah of our beloved Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him).

3. Start Practicing
Make a list of your shortcomings when it comes to your deen (religion) and start fixing them before Ramadan. Make a habit chart to get rid of negative habits and incorporate productive habits and deeds into your routine. Maybe there is a prayer that you are missing and need to start making a habit of praying, or that you need to stop wasting time online. Let’s not wait to start taking action when Ramadan begins, because it takes several days if not weeks to get used to the new routine. Such procrastination will make you lose MANY rewards. As a bare minimum, start by identifying your shortcomings and the steps you need to take to overcome them.

4. Set a Schedule
Ramadan is an extremely precious gift from Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) to us but it comes with a time limit of just 30 days. Knowing the true value of this month and not making a Ramadan schedule is equivalent to losing out an opportunity that you may not get again in your life. Make sure you schedule all the necessary acts of worship including reading your salah on time, recitation of the Qur’an, praying taraweeh, tahajjud, and extra supererogatory prayers. Also schedule your work, studies and other necessities of life but keep only those that are absolutely necessary, so you don’t lose out on the opportunity to maximize your worship. Make sure you stick to and follow your schedule to be at your productive best.

5. Prayers
Read your salah immediately after you hear the adhan. More often than not, we delay our prayers without any reason, and especially in Ramadan when we are feeling hungry, thirsty, tired and sleepy. We become groggy and delay our salah until we fall asleep or are not able to muster the courage to fight our lack of energy, resulting in a lost reward. The easiest way to avoid missing salah or reducing its reward is to pray as soon as possible. Doing so will ensure that you are relaxed and at peace with yourself.

6. Qur’an Recitation
Reading the Qur’an gives us the dose of daily guidance and productivity boost that we cannot do without, even for a day. Do not let procrastination make you lose out on the divine direction and spiritual energy that you need as a human being to live your life meaningfully. If you’ve set a target to finish reading the entire Qur’an, do not put off your portion for the day. Trust me; I have experience in delaying reading my portion of the Qur’an every day, and at the end, I’ve accumulated so much that its just impossible for me to reach my target of completing the Qur’an.

It is even more important to read as much Qur’an as possible in Ramadan. The Qur’an is divided into 30 juz (parts): you can complete one juz a day by reading 4 pages of the Qur’an after every salah daily, which means you can finish reading the Qur’an in Ramadan, In sha Allah! If Arabic is not something you know, it would be even better to read it with translation and tafsir (commentary). Understanding what you are reading has a profound effect on us and makes us act according to it.

7. You’ve Got to Do What You’ve Got to Do

Always keep in mind that you must do what you have to do at all costs, even if you do not like to do it. There are things that need to be done and missions that need to be accomplished. Leaving things for later will not make your responsibilities go away. Whatever obligations we have – whether religious, work or family-related – it is better to do them with all your heart than to delay them and do them in half-hearted haste with barely any concentration.

Above all, remember that all this effort at doing things on time and being productive is not for anyone else but for our own benefit in this world and the world hereafter. Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) says:

“And those who shall strive for Our Sake, We shall surely guide them unto Our ways.” [Qur’an: Chapter 29, Verse 69]

May Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) guide us to the right path and enable us to fulfill our responsibilities with dignity, honor, and grace. Aameen!

Source: Productive Muslim
Photo by Cathryn Lavery on Unsplash
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Nkandla architect court case to pay back the money ‘at advanced stage’

Civil proceedings to recoup some R155 million from the architect of former South African president Jacob Zuma’s KwaZulu-Natal homestead, Nkandla, should get under way in the next few months following several delays, MPs were told on Wednesday.

Briefing Parliament’s portfolio committee on justice, Special Investigating Unit (SIU) head Lekhoa Mothibi said the withdrawal of architect Minenhle Makhanya’s attorneys had meant they had to “almost start afresh with the new lawyers”.

The SIU instituted the civil litigation after it was found that the upgrades to Nkandla were found not to be security-related by the former Public Protector.

Zuma was later ordered to pay back R7.8 million because the upgrades had unduly benefited him and his family.

SIU legal counsel Gerhard Visagie told MPs Makhanya’s new attorneys were now on board, meaning the trial could get under way in the next few months, barring any more delays.

“This matter has met with a number of what can only be called delaying tactics. The new attorneys are now on board. The case is well advanced,” said Visagie.

“We are at the stage now where pre-trial conferences are being held. We anticipate that the civil claim should be set down within the next few months.”

Source: The Citizen
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