Mary-Jane Matsolo

Mary-Jane Matsolo is originally from Port Elizabeth. She studied journalism at P.E. Technikon. For as long as she can remember all her teachers told her she should become a journalist. She used to think that involved ducking bullets in a war zone.

Mary-Jane recalls a report she did which resulted in a family being reunited. It's that kind of story that inspires her journalism now.

Mary-Jane moved to Cape Town about eight years ago and worked for the Treatment Action Campaign. She became an AIDS activist. Now she covers mainly health stories for GroundUp.

Mary-Jane's stories published on GroundUp

A 13-year old boy was raped by a community soccer coach last Sunday in TR Section, Khayelitsha.
May 9, 2013
“I have to tie his leg to the couch. If I don’t he wanders away and I have to run around the whole of RR section in search of him, giving people a description of him and asking if anyone has seen a boy resembling my son.”
April 24, 2013
Patients with HIV in South African public clinics have to take at least three separate pills once and maybe twice daily. But in the private sector, as well as in the United States and Europe patients have for years been able to take their HIV treatment as one pill once a day.
April 10, 2013
Telkom is being accused of dismissing 23 learner interns without pay. The matter is going to the CCMA.
April 3, 2013
Civil society organisations led by the Treatment Action Campaign marched on 22 March to an event addressed by Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi at a school in Khayelitsha in anticipation of World Tuberculosis (TB) day.
March 29, 2013
When Premier Helen Zille was bitten by a rat last week, her spokesperson was quoted saying, “I know the City Bowl rats are mutant freaks of nature but if they’re starting to take nibbles out of people, we’re in trouble." However, as this story of a Khayelitsha baby bitten by a rat shows, in some parts of the City, rats are no laughing matter and rats "taking nibbles out of people" are not that unusual.
March 27, 2013
Elias Dyasi, former SANCO chairperson of the Mxolisi Petani branch and security officer at a surgeory in Site C, was gunned down last week Monday. According to the police report he was gunned down by two different kinds of guns and the perpetrators made away with his security gun only and left behind his cell phone and wallet that still had R70.
March 27, 2013
Andile Duvane was electrocuted on Wednesday 13 March while playing soccer with his friends. He stepped on open electrical wires outside Metrorail's substation at the RR section in Khayelitsha.
March 20, 2013
Launched in October 2012, KhayeNet is the latest project of the first mobile community network that deals with disseminating health related information to the community of Khayelitsha. This pilot project aims to improve communication between the public and the health sector.
March 13, 2013
Andiswa (not her real name) has been a resident of Khayelitsha Site C for 27 years. She turned her township home into a BnB business in 2006 offering tourists the exclusive and unique option of experiencing life in a shack. This all came to a screeching halt in April 2009 when her house was destroyed by BKS employees.
March 6, 2013
Cynthia is beaten up frequently by her husband. She is 34 and has been married for eight years. She lives in Khayelitsha with her husband.
February 27, 2013
Khayelitsha residents have to contend with rat infestations as a result of a City dumping container.
February 20, 2013
St Lukes Hospice in Lentegeur Hospital in Mitchells Plain has received notice that it will be closed. The hospice is a separate building on the hospital grounds. The provincial health department intends to replace the hospice's services in a ward in the hospital itself.
February 6, 2013
Hip Hop Kaslam (which means "my location") is the name given to the first hip hop event organised in 2010. The event is returning to the Baxter Theatre on 2 March 2013.
February 6, 2013
Fire left about 800 households destitute on new years day in BM Section, Khayelitsha. Many of these families are sheltering at the O.R Tambo hall a short distance from the scene of the fire.
January 23, 2013
About 500 people gathered outside the Cape High Court last week Thursday opposing Minister of Police Nathi Mthetwa’s application to stop a Commission of Inquiry into policing in Khayelitsha from continuing.
December 19, 2012
Male condoms are the ones most people know about. But female condoms are a safe and effective alternative that have been around since the 1980s. They are more expensive but the state does distribute them at no charge. We asked Cape Townians whether they would use the female condom. Their answers were fascinating.
December 12, 2012
Anele Yawa is a proportional representative councillor in Uitenhage. In August he spent nine days in prison. He alleges his only crime was to do his job.
December 5, 2012
“Government cannot spend any more money on HIV and Aids,” said Premier Helen Zille at a public hearing meeting on health, HIV/AIDS and TB service delivery at the Mew Way Hall in Khayelitsha on 3 December.
December 5, 2012
If you are arrested in South Africa, even if you are innocent, expect to spend months and maybe years in prison before being released. The law says that if you are arrested you should appear before a court within 48 hours or be released. The courts have also ruled that bail hearings are urgent. Yet the police, prosecutors, magistrates and judges often ignore these rights.
November 28, 2012
On 28 October the Khayelitsha Magistrates' Court handed spiritual dance teacher Mlulami Lawrence Gagu three life sentences for the rape of seven children over a period of two years.
November 7, 2012
Months before Social Justice Coalition member Angy Peter was arrested for her alleged role in a vigilante murder, she had lodged a complaint of corruption against police officer Andile Mtshiceka.
November 7, 2012
Metro FM held their latest Sunday Soul Sessions event at Ruitersvlei wine farm near Stellenbosch on 4 November.
November 7, 2012
Leading Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) activist Mike Matyeni collapsed during his cousin's funeral in Cathcart on Saturday 13 October 2012. He was declared dead the following morning.
October 24, 2012
On Sunday 14 October, two Social Justice Coalition (SJC) activists Angy Peter and Isaac Mbadu were arrested along with two other Mfuleni residents for the kidnap and murder of Siphiwo "Rowan" Mbevu.
October 23, 2012
The Western Cape has many talented artists. But often they struggle to make a living doing what they love. A talented artist who is determined to make it is Mxolisi Moyi a local Afro soul artist that hails from the township of Nyanga East infamously known for its high level of crime.
October 17, 2012
Lulamile Gagu was found guilty on twelve counts of rape at the Khayelitsha Magistrate's Court on 10 October. He will be sentenced on 29 October.
October 17, 2012
Approximately a thousand people marched to the Provincial Legislature building on Friday 5 October, which was also International Teachers Day, in protest against the closure of 27 schools in the Western Cape by MEC for Education, Donald Grant.
October 10, 2012
October is mental health care awareness month. We take a look at mental health care services on the Cape Flats and what is available to people with a mental health illness.
October 3, 2012
About 500 health workers, patients and activists protested outside the Western Cape legislature on 10 September against the planned closure of GF Jooste hospital in 2013.
September 19, 2012
Gugulethu Township was abuzz this weekend as cyclists from all over Cape Town participated in a bike ride from Cape Town central station to Gugulethu and back.
September 19, 2012
Some spaza shop owners in Khayelitsha are selling Department of Health (DoH) formula milk that is marked "Not for resale". This milk is supposed to be given free to HIV-positive mothers to give to their babies instead of breast milk.
September 12, 2012
Delft ward councillor Michael Sandile Toko is in charge of ward 20 which includes Voorbrug, Eindhoven and Delft South. His duties include bringing services and projects provided by the City of Cape Town to the people of these areas.
September 12, 2012
Sbongiseni Mveya narrowly escaped death when he found himself trapped inside a burning house in Phillipi due to a suspected electric malfunction.
September 12, 2012
The councillor for a major ward in Khayelitsha says the city is ignoring the real needs of his community.
September 5, 2012
Dudley Lee contracted TB while he was an awaiting trial prisoner. Now he's suing the state.
August 29, 2012
Situated in the heart of Khayelitsha Velokhaya Cycling Academy is an unusual sight in a township.
August 29, 2012
When 28 year old Ndimphiwe Masiba saw how hard it was for deaf children to make friends and interact with people, he decided to start a soccer team for deaf people in 2008 and unite them through the beautiful game of soccer.
August 22, 2012
Even if you are HIV positive you can still run the Comrades Marathon. That is the message behind a group of runners that call themselves Runners for Health.
August 8, 2012
Makazi’s take away is a busy shack that constantly has a line of customers waiting outside to be served their vetkoek (fat cakes).
July 25, 2012
Nonyameko Sowazi, also affectionately known to her customers as “Madlamini,” runs a “binnegoed” stand at the bottom of the Nonqubela station in Khayelitsha.
July 25, 2012
South African activists are campaigning to get a multinational pharmaceutical company, Novartis, to drop a court case against the Indian government.
July 18, 2012
The rain makes life even more difficult for the residents of Taiwan in Khayelitsha.
July 11, 2012
Mary-Jane Matsolo recently visited Tanzania and met members of an extraordinary education activist movement called HakiElimu.
July 11, 2012
Thandokhulu High School in Mowbray is a school serving children from townships despite being in a middle-class area. With fewer resources than the other schools in the neighbourhood, Thandokhulu is nevertheless starting to achieve high standards.
June 27, 2012
KwaMakhutha Township, just 27 kilometres outside Durban, has one of the highest HIV prevalence rates in the country.
June 20, 2012
There have been many media reports of shortages of medicines to treat AIDS over the last few weeks. But the medicine shortages go beyond antiretrovirals and there are even shortages of vaccines.
June 20, 2012
There are many abortion advertisements posted around Cape Town, at bus stops, taxi ranks and even churches. They usually have the name of someone claiming to be a doctor along with a contact number.
June 1, 2012
Delft residents from the TRA section located next to the graveyard took to the streets in an angry protest demanding houses. The police escorted the protestors away from the highway, which they were blocking.
May 31, 2012
Adam Peters, a UNISA student from Cameroon, has been studying in South Africa for three years.
May 29, 2012