The title has kicked off 2010 by getting two new high-profile columnists on board. Bridgette Shabalala's column appears every second Thursday and Sipho Ngobese's every Monday. Bridgette Shabalala
Bridgette Shabalala is a well-known women's rights advocate and is the Regional Head for the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development in KwaZulu-Natal where she campaigns for the rights of women and children.
Shabalala has a close relationship with Isolezwe
's women readers through her involvement in the title's Intandokazi club where she educates women about justice services and the legislation which protects women. She uses her column to expand on this and address readers' issues and queries.
Shabalala is a trained lawyer and worked at the courts in KwaZulu-Natal as a Public Prosecutor for many years. In 1996, she was appointed as the Director: Legal Administration at the Regional Office of the Department of Justice in KwaZulu-Natal.
She says, “My passion for women and children issues also led to my appointment in 2005 as Chief Director for the Promotion of the Rights of Vulnerable Groups at the Head Office of the same department in Pretoria.
“One of our main responsibilities as a Regional Office is to train court officials and officials from other criminal justice system departments on new legislation that is aimed at protecting the rights of women and children. These include the Sexual Offences Act, the Children's Act and the Child Justice Act and to ensure that all departments are ready for the implementation of the acts at the courts,” says Shabalala Sipho Ngobese
As a seasoned journalist and retired managing editor, Sipho Ngobese's opinion on a range of political and social issues affecting the Zulu community, is highly respected.
Ngobese started his career in journalism as a 15-year-old schoolboy when he worked part-time on Umafrika
newspaper. In 1973, he was employed as the first ever specialist sports writer at the bi-weekly Ilanga
and worked on this newspaper until 1983. He left, but rejoined in 1992 in the position of managing editor.
“Sipho has a great deal of experience and we quickly snapped him up to make use of his expertise,” says Isolezwe
editor, Thulani Mbatha.
“I was honoured to be approached by Thulani to work on this newspaper. Journalism has been my life all these years so this is a wonderful opportunity to express my views. I enjoy writing and will focus on different topics each week,” says Ngobese.
Ngobese also broadcasts on the Durban community radio station Inanda FM each Monday evening. He has a loyal following who tune in as he analyses the news of the day for listeners.
In addition to his freelance work, Ngobese is also involved in gospel music and his choir has recorded five albums.