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NEWSFLASH NEWS AGENCY 6 January 5 pm

Good afternoon,

In this bulletin:

# The Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services hand over the Parliament building to the Hawks for investigation
# Lord Peter Hain takes action against the implicated British company Bain and Company for their participation in state capture
# And, rugby: Lizo  Gqoboka says he is focused on giving his best in the year ahead

# Various teams from Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services have withdrawn from parliament to hand over the building to the Hawks. The presiding officers have confirmed that all necessary work needed to contain the fire has been completed and they are satisfied with the overall progress. The firefighters have remained on site since the second flare-up of the blaze on Tuesday. Parliament’s spokesperson Moloto Mothapo says investigations into the cause of the fire will now get underway:

Play sound: ENG-MolotoMothapo

# Anti-apartheid activist Lord Peter Hain has requested UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to freeze all government contracts with Bain and Company until they agreed to cooperate with South African authorities over allegations against them in the state capture report. Speaking to the SABC Hain insists that Bain and Company should repay over 170-million-rand it received from SARS:

Play sound: ENG Lord Hains

# The National Department of Agriculture says 74.6-million-rand has already been used to try and combat the locust plague affecting various parts of the Eastern Cape. In their letter to parliament the department says the cost includes the appointment and training of contractors, the cost of insecticides and related safety material. The Department of Agriculture asked the public to report the location of sightings. The plague has been described as the worst since 1984.

# Russia has sent paratroopers into Kazakhstan to quell a countrywide uprising after deadly violence spread across the tightly controlled former Soviet state. Police say they have killed dozens of rioters in the main city Almaty. State television says 13 members of the security are dead, with two decapitated. Reuters journalists in Almaty say a presidential residence and the mayor’s office are both ablaze. Military personnel have taken over the city’s airport from protesters. Internet is down countrywide. The unrest began as protests against rising fuel prizes, but escalated into anti-government protests.

# Rugby: Bulls prop, Lizo Gqoboka, is looking forward to a productive year, following a somewhat challenging 2021. The stalwart front-rower admits that the frustration of injuries he faced in the early part of last year held him back slightly. But he has put that behind him, and he is itching to contribute positively to the side. He said he did not even play six games in a row because there was always an injury that was an obstacle. He is however now focused on staying in good physical shape.

# And, financial indicators: The dollar is trading at 15-rand-71-cents and the euro at 17-rand-78-cents. One British pound costs 21-rand-26-cents and Bitcoin trades at 43-thousand-124-dollar-20-cents. Gold is selling at one thousand-789-dollars-26-cents a fine ounce and Brent crude oil is quoted at 82-dollars-30-cents a barrel.

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