Issue 155 | 27 February 2015
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The Extraordinary Summit considered the political and security situation in the Kingdom of Lesotho ahead of the 28 February 2015 elections.
On 20 February 2015, South Africa hosted an Extraordinary Summit of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Double Troika in Pretoria. The Double Troika consists of the following countries: Zimbabwe, Botswana, Malawi, South Africa, Lesotho and Namibia.

The summit received the report of the Facilitator on the latest political developments in Lesotho and the electoral process and welcomed progress made towards the finalisation of the Lesotho Dialogue and commended both the Facilitator and key stakeholders, including the Independent Electoral Commission of Lesotho for the preparations of the electoral process.

The summit called upon all stakeholders in Lesotho to abide by the commitments made in the three SADC-brokered agreements, specifically the Maseru Facilitation Declaration, Maseru Security Accord and Electoral Pledge.

It condemned any actions that may compromise the holding of peaceful, free, fair and credible elections.

The summit approved the extension of the Status of Forces Agreement for the deployment in Lesotho for another three months until 31 March 2015.

It called upon stakeholders in the Kingdom of Lesotho to pay attention to security sector and constitutional reforms, post-2015 Parliamentary Elections, with the support of SADC.

The summit reiterated its support to the efforts of President Jacob Zuma for his exemplary work towards restoring political stability, peace and security in the Kingdom of Lesotho, and Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and SADC Facilitator to the Kingdom of Lesotho for excellent facilitation towards returning the political stability in the Kingdom of Lesotho.
The mission, which has been deployed since last week, will complement the work of the AU long-term experts, who have been deployed since January and will remain in Lesotho until 14 March 2015.
The chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, has approved the deployment of an AU Short-Term Observation (STO) Mission to the 28 February Parliamentary Elections in Lesotho.

The six long-term experts will be joined by 40 short-term observers drawn from African electoral management bodies, civil-society organisations, human right institutions, think-tanks, women groups, the Pan-African Parliament, regional economic communities and the Permanent Representatives’ Committee of the AU to support the work of the long-term experts and observe the election day activities.

The mission is led by Former Prime Minister of Kenya, Raila Amolo Odinga.

“As part of his activities, the mission leader will meet relevant stakeholders in Lesotho, including the leaders of political parties, the chairperson of the Independent Electoral Commission, the Chief Justice, political parties, civil-society organisations, security agencies and other electoral observation missions,” the AU said in a statement.

“The main objective of the mission is to make an independent, objective and impartial assessment of the elections. The mission will issue its preliminary findings 48 hours after the close of polls and will release its final report with recommendations within two months after the elections.”
– Source:
This is the first high-level visit from South Africa to Sri Lanka since the new administration of President Maithripala Sirisena took over following the Presidential elections held in Sri Lanka on 8 January 2015.
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Nomaindiya Mfeketo, is undertaking an Official Visit to Sri Lanka from 24 to 28 February 2015.

It is the first follow-up visit by a South African Government delegation since the visit to Sri Lanka in July 2014 by Deputy President Cyril Ramahosa as the Special Envoy of President Jacob Zuma to Sri Lanka. 

At the same time, the Fifth Partnership Forum between South Africa and Sri Lanka took place in Colombo on 24 and 25 February 2015 and a number of South African government departments were represented.

Two agreements were signed on this occasion; namely, on tourism cooperation and cooperation between the South African and Sri Lankan zoological gardens.
The Sixth Session of the HLC took place within the context of solid structured bilateral relations between the two countries and the commitment to enhance the North-South dialogue.
The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Luwellyn Landers, co-chaired with his Swiss counterpart, Yves Rossier, the Sixth South African-Switzerland HLC.

The HLC comprises the following committees:  Foreign Affairs Working Group; the Human Rights Dialogue Sub-Committee; the Joint Economic Commission; the Development Cooperation and Financial Matters Working Group; and the Science and Technology, Energy, Education Skills Development and Vocational Training Working Group.

During the session, both the Deputy Minister and the State Secretary emphasised the importance of human rights as a priority of their foreign policies.

They also agreed that the newly formed South Africa-Switzerland Human Rights Sub-Committee would go a long way in enhancing cooperation and constructive approaches to human rights issues of mutual interest.

The Deputy Minister and the State Secretary agreed to explore possible collaboration in peace-building initiatives in Burundi and Somalia. They further agreed to contribute to strengthening regional African organisations and commended the African Union in its efforts to maintain peace and stability.

The State Secretary expressed Switzerland’s willingness to continue contributing towards sustainable peace on the African continent and to consider Agenda 2063 in its future engagements.
The new bank will be based in Shanghai, China, while an African regional centre of the bank will be located in South Africa. The regional centre will be opened concurrently with the headquarters before the first loan in 2016.
Cabinet has approved the tabling in Parliament for ratification the treaty establishing the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA) and agreement on the New Development Bank (NDB).

“The Contingent Reserve Arrangement is being established to respond to short-term balance-of-payment pressures. Further, it will serve as a precautionary measure to help the BRICS countries forestall short-term liquidity pressures, provide mutual support and further strengthen the global financial safety net,” said the Minister for Performance, Monitoring and Evaluation in The Presidency, Jeff Radebe, at a media briefing.

In July last year, Cabinet welcomed the agreement to launch the NDB at the Sixth BRICS Summit in Brazil as well as to establish the bank’s regional office in Johannesburg.

The five members of the group laid out the designs of the bank and the CRA in a declaration released following their sixth summit.

The bank will have a starting authorised capital of US$100 billion, of which US$50 billion will be pledged.

At the summit, the leaders agreed on plans for the CRA. At its core, the CRA is a pledge to help one another in times of financial crisis.

Each country will achieve this by together pledging a total of US$100 billion to a common pool – with China contributing the most (US$41 billion); Brazil, Russia and India contributing US$18 billion each; and South Africa contributing US$5 billion.

These pledges will not be physically put aside, but will be made available in times of crisis.

Cabinet noted the handover of the Chairperson of the South African component of the BRICS Business Council from Patrice Motsepe to Brian Molefe.

Motsepe was the inaugural chair of both the South African component and the BRICS Business Council as a whole. – Source:
WEF-Africa is a regionally focused economic forum that provides an opportunity for local and regional businesses and investors interested in the region, to exchange and even explore possible partnership with governments.
Cabinet recently approved the hosting by South Africa of the World Economic Forum (WEF)-Africa at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from 3 to 5 June 2015. The theme will be “Then and Now: Reimagining Africa’s Future”.

The WEF-Africa meeting will provide South Africa with an added opportunity to actively engage and lobby African leaders, and international and regional businesses on possible interventions to integrate the region and enhance growth in South Africa and the region.
The results were based on a scientific media content analysis of 11 704 reports on Africa out of 457 738 reports on global TV and opinion-leading business and financial print.
Brand South Africa Chairperson Chichi Maponya received the Media Tenor’s Africa Country Image Award on behalf of Brand South Africa, in Vienna, Austria, on Friday, 20 February.

Maponya expressed her appreciation that South Africa was chosen as a recipient of this prestigious award.

“This Award shows us that the image and reputation of our country is on an upward trajectory.

“What needs to be done now is for each citizen of our country to play our part to ensure that we build on the successes at hand.

“Indeed reputation is a fragile asset which must be maintained and nurtured consciously and consistently by all stakeholders,” she said.

The criteria included basic visibility and no excess negativity, political performance, economic performance, social developments and leadership qualities. – Source:


“South Africa can be very proud of our courageous healthcare workers and all those that have supported the Ebola response, as they assist fellow Africans to win the fight against Ebola.” – Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi.
The African Union (AU) Support to Ebola Outbreak in West Africa (ASEOWA), in collaboration with the South African Government, has sent 23 South African health workers to Ebola-affected countries.

The health workers, including 20 nurses and three paramedics, departed Johannesburg for Sierra Leone on Friday, 20 February 2015.

From 11 to 12 February, the health workers underwent two days of pre-deployment training given by AU and Ministry of Health officials. On arrival in the affected countries, the health workers will undergo further intensive training for two weeks before embarking on their duties.

AU Commissioner of Social Affairs, Mustapha Sidiki Kaloko, commended the South African Government for sending health workers, saying that the 835 African medical personnel so far deployed by ASEOWA have impacted positively in reducing both new infections and deaths from Ebola.

This deployment was the second for South Africa, following an independent deployment on 23 January.

The first group is stationed at the Goderich Emergency Ebola Treatment Centre on the outskirts of Freetown, Sierra Leone. Since their arrival, the South Africans have already seen six discharges and lost two patients.

The healthcare professionals stay in country for six months of service in AU-supported treatment sites and when they return to South Africa they will undergo three weeks of observation before they can resume normal duties.
The latest report form the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development stated that South Africa attracted just short of R80 billion in foreign direct investment in 2013, 110% more than the previous year. Ernst & Young’s “2014 Africa Attractiveness Survey” said that Africa had risen to become the second most attractive investment destination in the world, tied with Asia.
The broad trendline of investment in South African industrial infrastructure has been positive in the past four years since the dramatic loss of investment during the global economic crisis, Minister of Economic Development, Ebrahim Patel, told MPs.

Minister Patel said the State’s developmental role was pivotal, citing the example of the state-owned Industrial Development Corporation (IDC). He said that for every R1 billion spent by the IDC, R2 billion in further investment came from the private sector.

The IDC spent on average R12 billion a year, meaning that a further R24 billion or so was drawn in from the private sector – a total of R36 billion a year on investment in industrial activity.

Speaking in the debate on President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation Address, the minister said a number of surveys of investment from outsiders “all tell the same story: Africa is successful in attracting foreign direct investment and South Africa in turn attracts the largest share of such investment”.

South Africa remained the largest destination for FDI projects on the continent, with its projects exceeding those of the whole of North Africa. – Source:
The industry is billed as playing a significant role in the economic progress of many nations, which has led to various countries and cities using airports as engines for economic growth.
South Africa hosted the Air Cargo Africa 2015 Biennial International Conference and Exhibition at Emperors Palace in Johannesburg from 25 to 27 February. It was an opportunity for the continent to showcase its air cargo industry prowess to the world.

The conference is a key networking platform for leaders in the air cargo industry to assess the growing prospects of the African market.

The Air Cargo Africa event, which entered into its third edition, this year received a boost in support from the global cargo community. 

This raised the profile of the conference as a significant event that added value to the global trade balance, thereby fostering the economic prosperity of African nations.

In its past two editions held in Nairobi and Johannesburg, the show has seen major participation from airlines and airports, particularly from Africa.

The theme of the conference was “Air Cargo – Africa’s Path to Sustainable Growth”. – Source:
South Africa’s economic relations with India have flourished since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1993. Closer economic ties are also fostered using initiatives such as the Joint Ministerial Commission and business engagements facilitated through the SA-India CEOs’ Forum.
The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mzwandile Masina, led a 25-member business delegation to the sixth annual India Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI).

The ITI, which took place in Hyderabad and Kolkata from 23 to 27 February, formed part of the dti’s export and investment promotion strategy to focus on India as a high growth export market and foreign direct investment (FDI) source.

The Deputy Minister said as a follow-up to the Fifth ITI held in March 2014, this  ITI would target South African companies seeking to attract FDI and also project owners and managers seeking joint venture partnerships in agroprocessing, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, mining and mineral beneficiation, infrastructure, architecture and renewable energy sectors.

India ranks among the top 10 investing countries in South Africa. Between January 2009 and June 2014, a total of 44 FDI projects from India were recorded. These projects represent a total capital investment of R18,25 billion, which is an average investment of R414,76 million per project.

The total trade between India and South Africa was worth R80,9 billion in 2013, with a trade balance of R22,9 billion in favour of India.
– Source:
Understanding geospatial information informs planning and decision-making for the development of South Africa.
Cabinet has approved that South Africa participates in the International Map Year in 2015 and 2016 by organising events at a national level with a view to increase the level of map awareness and literacy in South Africa.

Maps help to understand problems and possibilities, such as the provision of housing, sustaining natural resources, managing risk and facilitating timely and comprehensive transportation infrastructure.


Wipro, which has a Johannesburg office, specialises in IT, consulting and business process services. The company also has a global workforce of over 150 000.
New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) listed technology company Wipro is injecting R3,8 million into skills development and job creation efforts in South Africa.

 “This investment will be utilised for local hiring and skills development,” said Wipro in a statement.

“Wipro plans to hire 55 science and technology graduates, fresh out of university, for its operations in South Africa over the course of the next six months,” added the company.

Wipro said that graduates were planned to be shortlisted based on academic performance, tests and interviews.

Thereafter, they are planned to undergo a six-month training programme.

Shailendra Singh, Business Director, Africa, Wipro Ltd said, “Job creation and skills development are vital imperatives for businesses in South Africa. With this programme, Wipro provides local graduates an opportunity to train and build a career in the global information technology industry.” – Source:
The centre has spent the last 10 years focusing on China-Africa relations research, the only centre in Africa to do so exclusively.
The African East-Asian Affairs (AEAA) journal of the Centre for Chinese Studies (CCS) at Stellenbosch University is the first African journal on East Asian-Africa relations to be accredited by the Department of Higher Education and Training, according to the university.

"East Asia's relationship with emerging markets such as Africa, South America, South East Asia and Central Asia is still fairly new and Africa is an important player in this new field," explains Ross Anthony, the interim director of the centre and associate editor of the journal.

According to Harrie Esterhuyse, a research analyst at the CCS and the deputy editor of the journal, the publication attempts to capture the developments and nuances of the relationship between Africa and East-Asian nations, including China, Japan, Korea and the states in Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations). – Source: Stellenbosch University
Attaining this historic milestone had secured Kirstenbosch's status as one of the most important tourist attractions in South Africa.
The Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden in Cape Town attracted more than one million visitors in 2014.

"The milestone achieved by Kirstenbosch is a tribute to the hard work and vision of the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI)," Tourism Minister, Derek Hanekom, said on 19 February, in announcing the visitor numbers.

"The tourism footprint in conservation areas and botanical gardens generates the income to support the sustainability of these assets."

SANBI chief executive Dr Tanya Abrahamse said Kirstenbosch was an example how tourism and biodiversity could build a beneficial partnership and contribute to a more sustainable economic model.

"Kirstenbosch is well-known as a 'must see' destination when planning a trip to South Africa, so when international tourism experts visit the country it's no surprise that they would like to visit this iconic spot." – Source:
ATFT registered as a delegation at Rio and had a stand for South African filmmakers in attendance under the trademark "South African Indies".
The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti), in partnership with the Association of Transformation in Film and Television (ATFT),  led a delegation of 20 emerging South African filmmakers to the Rio Content Market in Brazil.

This was the second time both the DTI and ATFT attended the market; this year also partnering with the National Film and Video Foundation, Gauteng Film Commission and Destination Marketing, Investment and Trade Promotion Agency for the Western Cape. The Rio Content Market took place from 25 to 27 February 2015.

This is the second Academy Award for Abraham, the owner and founding producer of the Fugard Theatre in Cape Town. He won an Oscar for the Czech film “Kolya” in 1996.
"Ida", the film produced by South Africa-born film and theatre producer Eric Abraham, won Best Foreign Language Film at a ceremony in Los Angeles on Sunday night.

The Polish-language black-and-white film shot in a square aspect ratio format was also nominated for best cinematography. – Source:
Director Ernest Nkosi and his team met at film school. They made the film on a shoestring budget, with no state or private funding. The film debuted at the Durban International Film Festival last year to half empty houses – and now is the darling of the American festival scene.
A searing South African film about sugar daddies and marital rape, Thina Sobabili: The Two of Us, has lifted the coveted Audience Award at Danny Glover’s Pan African Film Festival (Paff) in Los Angeles.

"This is the hardest award to win. There were 16 500 votes in the entire festival and we won by a landslide," said Nkosi.

Thina Sobabili is marked by excellent performances and a huge dramatic twist. It is a witty, gritty and unflinching exploration of life in Alexandra township.

Three other South African films, Four Corners, Hear Me Move and Cold Harbour were also in competition. Four Corners was South Africa’s entry in the Oscars this year, Hear Me Move is the country’s first dance movie, and Cold Harbour is a compelling smuggling gang film set in Cape Town.

Glover began Paff to "showcase the broad spectrum of black creative works, particularly those that reinforce positive images and help destroy negative stereotypes".

The festival has previously honoured the likes of Forest Whitaker, Loretta Devine and Idris Elba, as well as films like Free Angela and Blackbird, putting Thina Sobabili in esteemed company.
This amazing achievement will mean that Ngxokolo will present his creations at the international showcase of Palazzo Morando in Milan, Italy, in September and at the Africa International Fashion Week in December in Lagos, Nigeria.
South African luxury knitwear label MaXhosa by Laduma Ngxokolo has won the inaugural Vogue Scouting for Africa prize.

"I feel extremely honoured to have been chosen as the winner who will be an ambassador for African fashion," said Ngxokolo in an interview.

"I also feel privileged and proud to be South African and to be utilising the resources and inspiration we possess to create a unique voice that can be understood and appreciated across many of the countries I have visited."

MaXhosa’s distinctive designs reference his Xhosa heritage using local materials and manufacturers. – Source: City Press
The appointment arrived mid-tour of the Hollywood screening of dance film “Hear Me Move” as part of the Pan African Film festival. It is also his second international endorsement by an international dance body. The Dance World Cup organisation is one of the biggest dance federations based in the United Kingdom, and the only dance competition that roves around the globe.
Paul Modjadji, South Africa’s first dance film “Hear Me Move” choreographer, has done it again with his appointment as Dance World Cup Ambassador.

His role and duties include promoting dance culture in South Africa, and to mentor the South African team that will be representing the country at the Dance World Cup Finals in Romania during June 2015.

 He will be going around the country encouraging young dancers not to give up on their dreams and also mentoring them on how to turn dance into a sustainable career. – Source:
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