Issue 133 | 18 September 2014
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“This is a particularly difficult time for South Africa. Not in the recent history of our country have we had this large number of our people die in one incident outside the country.”
The Presidency has confirmed that 67 South Africans have been killed and scores others injured after a building at the Synagogue Church of All Nations collapsed on Friday, 12 September, in Lagos, in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

President Jacob Zuma has expressed his sadness at the loss of lives and sent his condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones.

“Our thoughts are with the families, friends and colleagues that have lost their loved ones in this heart-breaking tragedy. The whole nation shares the pain of the mothers, fathers, daughters and sons who have lost their loved ones. We are all in grief.

“As we mourn this sudden and tragic death of our fellow compatriots, I have directed the relevant government departments and entities to act with the utmost urgency to ensure that we facilitate the movement of relevant family members to Nigeria to identify the bodies of their loved ones and to ensure that we repatriate the remains as soon as possible under the circumstances.

“I would like to take this opportunity also to thank all family members and friends who have provided information to government, which has assisted the South African High Commission in Nigeria in its efforts to locate our fellow citizens.

“I would also like to commend all affected families for their patience and resolve during this very painful period.

“On behalf of the Government and the people of South Africa, I would like to thank the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for their support during this difficult time. We also send our sincere condolences to the people of Nigeria and all other nations affected by this tragedy.

“I would like to assure all affected families that the Government will provide all the necessary support.”
The 10-member team comprises a variety of people with expertise of dealing with search and rescue in rubbles and doctors, among others.
Government has dispatched a search and rescue team to Lagos to assist in the recovery of the remains of South Africans who were killed during a tragic building collapse in Nigeria, says International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.

This follows an announcement by President Jacob Zuma that 67 South Africans were killed during a building collapse at the Synagogue Church of All Nations on Friday last week.

“As per the instruction of President Jacob Zuma, government has activated here at home a disaster management process and is treating the matter with the utmost urgency it deserves.

“Government understands fully the anguish and pain of the affected families and we are walking this difficult and painful [journey] hand in hand with the families.

“I am also able to confirm that an advanced team from the disaster management centre that I spoke about are boarding an aircraft to Nigeria with all the expertise that we thought was needed,” she said.

She said the South African Consul-General to Nigeria was on the scene and working around the clock to get as much information as possible.

The Minister said affected families would be assisted with the process of identifying their loved ones and the repatriation of the remains of the victims.

She said the department has a hotline, an operations centre number 012 351 1000, for families and relatives to call in and get consular assistance. 

The department has also set up an Operations Room in Pretoria which provides consular services and advice to families 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The public can contact the department on the following contact numbers: 012 351 0924 / 012 351 1757/ 012 351 1262 or 012 351 1623.

South Africans can also contact the department by making use of the Registration of South Africans Abroad (ROSA) website and e-mail facility or or call 012 351 0682.

The Minister also appealed to the families to send through pictures of their loved ones to the department, on the e-mail address She said this would help officials identify the victims during the search and rescue mission. – Source:
President Jacob Zuma called a one-day summit as the Chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics and Defence following an attempted coup on 30 August. Peace talks between political parties have deadlocked since the coup.
A South African-led observer mission is to be deployed to Lesotho for three months with the hope that stability will prevail and enable the mountain kingdom to hold elections.

This emerged on 15 September in a Southern African Development Community (SADC) Double Troika Extraordinary Summit in Pretoria.

The summit mandated that Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, supported by the Secretariat and a team of experts from troika member states, act as SADC Facilitator to the Kingdom of Lesotho with clear terms of reference to facilitate the restoration of political and security stability in Lesotho, in the short and long term.

“[The] summit mandated the SADC Organ Troika plus Zimbabwe to urgently deploy the full SADC Politics, Defence and Security observation mission in Lesotho for a period of three months, after which it could be reviewed to ensure peace and stability within the defence and security establishments,” reads the communiqué issued at the end of the summit. The summit was attended by Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, Botswana President Ian Kham, Lesotho's Prime Minister Thomas Thabane and his Deputy Mothetjoa Metsing, as well as representatives from Malawi, Namibia and Tanzania.

Lesotho's coalition party leaders have also agreed to bring forward the 2017 general elections to a date to be agreed upon after consultations between the coalition leaders of the coalition government and other political stakeholders. The summit urged the leaders of the coalition government to uphold their commitments towards restoration of constitutional normalcy in the kingdom by implementing the Windhoek and Pretoria declarations as a matter of urgency, especially the lifting of Parliament prorogation within the agreed time, during which focus should be placed on preparing the brought-forward elections.

The summit also discussed the stalled peace process in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Concerns still remain over the slow disarmament and demobilisation of members of the defeated M23 rebel group which have been operating in the North-Kivu Region of that country. The DRC Government signed a peace deal with the M23 rebel movement last month in the presence of regional leaders in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

The summit reiterated the SADC position on the role of the United Nations (UN) agencies in providing logistics and security to Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) who have voluntarily disarmed and are being relocated to Kisangani transit camp. The first voluntary disarmament came into effect last week – when a group of 83 combatants of the FDLR formally disarmed in South Kivu in the eastern part of the DRC. The FDLR is a Hutu rebel group that conducts its operations from the eastern part of the DRC.

The summit directed the secretariat to facilitate the Organ Troika Senior Officials Mission, with a strong and clear message to the leadership of the FDLR to unblock the process of voluntary disarmament, and report back to the MCO Troika at its next meeting.

Leaders also urged the international community, the UN and its agencies to initiate a resettlement programme in countries outside the Great Lakes Region to accommodate those FDLR elements who have voluntarily disarmed but are unwilling or not allowed to repatriate to Rwanda.

The regional leaders also appealed to the international community to put pressure on the companies dealing with illegally mined minerals from the DRC to stop doing so with immediate effect. –
The Ministers identified mining and the Blue Economy as key areas that the two countries should tap into for the benefit
of both economies.
South Africa and Australia have committed to advance each other’s common interests, while unleashing mutual economic opportunities. This emerged after bilateral consultations between the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, and her Australian counterpart, Julie Bishop, in Pretoria last week.

Through cooperation in the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), Minister Nkoana-Mashabane told a media briefing, the two countries would push the agenda of the ocean economy, as outlined in Operation Phakisa, and strive to achieve the targets of the National Development Plan (NDP). Operation Phakisa seeks to contribute about R177 billion to the economy and create up to one million jobs by 2030, while fast-tracking the delivery of the priorities outlined in the NDP – the country’s blueprint for eliminating poverty and reducing inequality.

The two sides also identified mining as an untapped sector from which the two sides can benefit. As a resource-rich country with substantial experience in mining, development and mining equipment as well as technology services, Bishop said Australia was well placed to help South Africa derive real sustainable benefits from the mining sector. – Source:
“The meeting today provided us with an opportunity to once again appraise our bilateral relations which are 21 years old this year, and to further solidify our work in deepening our political and economic relations.”
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, recently met Vladimir Makei, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, in Pretoria. It was Minister Makei's first Official Visit to South Africa.

Addressing a joint press conference, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said they exchanged briefs on their national development priorities and emphasised the importance of building a mutually beneficial partnership that contributed to the advancement of the countries' national and regional development priorities.

“We also reviewed progress in our trade and economic relations, as well as cooperation in education, agriculture and rural development. In this regard, we renewed our continued support for the strengthening of economic and commercial relations and technical cooperation, especially in the automotive, capital equipment, agriculture and agroprocessing sectors under the umbrella of the South Africa-Belarus Intergovernmental Committee of Trade and Economic Cooperation that is led by the Department of Trade and Industry and the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”

Total trade between South Africa and Belarus recorded an increase between 2009 and 2013 from R42 million to R253 million.
South Africa participated in this forum for benchmarking and sharing ideas around science, technology and innovation. The annual gathering also looked at issues of unemployment around the world and how it could be addressed.
The WEF’s Eighth Annual Meeting of the Champions 2014 was held in Tianjin, China, from 10 to 12 September 2014 under the theme, “Creating Value through Innovation”. The Minister of Communications, Faith Muthambi, the Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi, and Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, attended.

The WEF was established in 2007 as the foremost global gathering on science, technology and innovation. The Annual Meeting of the Champions convenes the next generation of fast-growing enterprises shaping the future of business and society together with leaders from major multinationals as well as government, media, academia and civil society.
The JCM, which convenes annually, was established in 2001 to ensure structured cooperation between South Africa and Cuba.
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Luwellyn Landers, recently hosted his Cuban counterpart, Ana Teresita González Fraga, who was in Pretoria for the South Africa-Cuba Joint Consultative Mechanism (JCM).

The South Africa-Cuba JCM is conducted against a background of solid and growing bilateral and fraternal ties between the two countries that go beyond the formal establishment of diplomatic relations in May 1994.
The Department of Environmental Affairs recently said that the number of rhinos poached for their horns since January 2014 had increased to 769, with 227 people having been arrested countrywide. The Kruger National Park continues to bear the brunt of rhino poaching in South Africa, having lost 489 rhino so far this year.
The South African National Parks (SANParks) recently hosted a group of Vietnamese celebrities, media and top business people visiting the Kruger National Park. The visit was facilitated by SANParks Honorary Rangers in partnership with the Rhinose Foundation.

The visit aimed to contribute to efforts towards the reduction in demand for rhino horn by debunking myths relating to the perceived medicinal value of rhino horn, and by exposing leading personalities to the harsh realities of rhino poaching.

SANParks Acting Head of Communications, Reynold Thakhuli, said education and influence were important to consumer markets, but in many instances had failed because of the myths being perpetuated by those who intended to make easy money from the illegal trade in rhino horn.

“We want these celebrities to have a first-hand experience of the cruelty that these African giants are subjected to, and to use their influence to discourage the demand in their home country,” Thakhuli said.  – Source:
The South Africa-Cuba Medical Programme was introduced in 1998 to address a shortage of medical professionals in the country. The bursaries awarded to the students will cover
the costs of books, accommodation and tuition.
A Cuban-trained medical doctor has urged aspirant doctors, who will be studying medicine in Cuba, to represent the country well.

Speaking during a farewell function of 126 medical bursary recipients of the South Africa-Cuba Medical Programme, held recently in Mmabatho, Dr Tshepo Lekone reminded aspiring doctors that they would not only represent the North West province, but the country as a whole.

North West MEC for Health, Dr Magome Masike, said the programme was in line with government’s rural development plan, which sought to improve the general state of service delivery. He said his department was contributing to this mandate by improving health services in rural areas.

“As government, we are hoping that the South Africa-Cuba Medical Programme will eventually assist us to improve our patient-doctor ratio.  We need to see more doctors and specialists visiting our clinics and community health centres, where our people live.”

The province has seen an increase in Cuban medical bursary recipients, from 10 in 2008 to 126 in 2014. Currently, the province has 68 medical doctors from poor backgrounds, who successfully completed their medical studies in Cuba and are now serving in various facilities
across the province. – Source:
“We should not lose sight of the fact that Nakasa, cosmopolitan as he was later to become in Johannesburg, belongs to a line of African intellectuals that went before him,” Minister Mthethwa said.
Speaking at the reburial service of Nat Nakasa, held at the Durban City Hall on 13 September, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa said the forced departure of Nakasa for Harvard University in America told the story of where South Africa came from. He said the reburial of Nat Nakasa marked the closing of a tragic chapter for the Nakasa family and the nation’s history.

Nakasa left the country in 1964 on a one-way exit permit after he was awarded a prestigious Nieman Fellowship to study at Harvard University in the United States. He committed suicide in July 1965 by jumping from a window of a high-rise building. This was out of frustration of the thought not being able to come back home. He was buried at the Ferncliff Cemetery in upstate New York.

“We are very pleased and happy that Nakasa is back home in South Africa after 49 years. The act of reburial thus solidifies that he is part of our heritage,” Minister Mthethwa said. – Source:
Seven in 10 African consumers access the Internet through their mobile phones, compared with 6% who use desktop computers, according to an Ericsson study earlier this year.
One hundred million people or 10% of Africans are logging on to Facebook every month, the world's No1 online social network said recently, presenting a new target audience for advertisers.

Of those 100 million people, 80% are accessing the platform via mobiles on a continent with very low Internet penetration and smartphone ownership, it said.

Facebook's global mobile advertising revenue jumped more than 150% in the second quarter, accounting for about 62% of overall ad revenue.

"There is a fantastic opportunity for business as well if you are local or a global business. Knowing that there is all these people now in Africa that you can connect with, that is exciting as well," said Nicola Mendelsohn, Facebook's vice president for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Facebook would be pouring more resources into Africa to understand how consumers use its product and was considering opening an office on the continent in 2015, Mendelsohn said.

Facebook has more than 1,5 million active advertisers and more than 1,3 billion active users globally.
The Simulation Lab project is part of Philips’ ambition to improve the quality of healthcare in South Africa through meaningful solutions, innovations and partnerships.
Royal Philips, in collaboration with the University of Johannesburg (UJ), inaugurated a state-of-the-art medical training simulation lab on the university premises during the Johannesburg stopover of Philips’ fifth consecutive pan-African Cairo to Cape Town roadshow. This pioneering project will contribute to the hands-on training of medical students in South Africa.

Philips has equipped the Simulation Lab at UJ with medical equipment and diagnostic devices intended to facilitate the exposure of emergency care students and academic staff to current medical technologies and adequately prepare them to operate under a pressurised and intense work environment.

The South African Department of Higher Education and Training has also played a key role in this project by awarding a clinical training grant to assist UJ in improving the clinical competencies of health professional graduates. – Source: SA - The Good News
Since 1974, Molteno has developed learning material, provided training
and mentorship to foundation phase teachers with mother-tongue and English development programmes.
A South African NGO has received UNESCO’s Confucius Prize for Literacy. The award was presented on International Literacy Day to Molteno Institute for Language and Literacy.

Molteno’s candidacy was supported by the Ministry of Basic Education and the South African National Commission for UNESCO. “Their recommendation shows the trust they have in what we do,” said Masennya Dikotla, chief executive of Molteno.

“We are truly humbled by this great achievement, and pleased that the role we play in improving literacy in South Africa is being recognised. We dedicate this prize to the children of our beloved country and will use the prize money to ensure a better future for them,” Dikotla added.

Established in 2005, the UNESCO Confucius Prize recognises the activities of outstanding individuals, governments or governmental agencies and NGOs whose work in literacy serves rural adults and out-of-school youth, particularly women and girls.
Launched in October 2013, Webhelp SA has achieved significant success in the South African market.
Webhelp SA, South Africa’s leading customer experience management company, has been named the winner of the Contact Centre Management Group’s (CCMG) Award’s “Best Outsourcing Partnership 2014”. The award is in recognition of Webhelp SA’s partnership with EE, the United Kingdom’s (UK) largest mobile network operator.

The success of the Webhelp/EE relationship in South Africa has enabled the company to extend the relationship into the UK. The EE relationship has now extended to 1 000 FTE, supporting five major lines of business. Webhelp, via South Africa, is now looking into other multichannel solutions for EE.

For 2014, the CCMG Industry Awards partnered with ContactCenterWorld, a global organisation awards platform, on global and local recognition for the various winners. The awards are held annually, and are scheduled for Europe in 2015.– Source: SA - The Good News
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