Issue 174 | 19 June 2015
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The continent needs a strong force for peace and security that would ensure the continent has the stability it needs for sustainable development to take root.
The African Union (AU) believes Africa will have a united and functioning single military by the end of this year as leaders on Monday pledged to accelerate the operationalisation of the African Standby Force (ASF).

This is one of the resolutions adopted at the 25th AU Summit, which ended in Johannesburg on 15 June.

Such a force would also be crucial to counter terrorists groups like Boko Haram and Alshabab that have killed thousands of people and displaced many in West Africa. The envisaged 25 000-strong ASF, operating through five regional brigades, is expected to be the backbone of the continent’s new peace and security architecture.

AU Chairperson, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, confirmed that the first training exercises for the force would be held in South Africa towards the end of October. It is hoped that by the end of the year, all regions will be ready to form part of the single force.

Reading from the declaration of the summit, President Mugabe noted that the “troubling” state of peace and security on the continent needed to be given attention.

“We condemn the acts of terrorism committed by extremists across Africa and we resolve to confront terrorism collectively in order to defeat it,” he said.

The summit at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg was held under the theme “Year of Women Empowerment and Development towards Africa's Agenda 2063”.

After two days of intense deliberations on the future of the continent, President Mugabe said the AU leaders resolved to adopt the plan to implement the first 10 years of the Agenda 2063 blueprint. Leaders also backed initiatives aimed at women empowerment and highlighted what they called “eradication of the hoe” and introduce modern equipment for women working in agriculture.

The political crisis in Burundi and ways to fund the AU operations were also discussed intensely.

Leaders resolved to intensify their effort to address the issue of migrants crossing the Mediterranean, and improving infrastructure and technology advancement on the continent. With thousands of African migrants losing their lives in the Mediterranean Sea while trying to reach greener pastures in Europe, the issues of migration is evidently a worrying issue for the AU.  – Source:
This year marked 39 years since the 16 June students uprisings and 21 years since South Africa attained its freedom and democracy.
On 16 June, young people gathered at the Tshwane Events Centre in Pretoria to celebrate Youth Day.

The theme for this year’s Youth Month celebrations was “Youth Moving South Africa Forward”.

President Jacob Zuma, his deputy, Cyril Ramaphosa, and several ministers attended the Youth Day celebrations.

The Youth Day celebrations started with an interfaith prayer session led by young religious leaders at Freedom Park and was followed by a Youth Walk from Freedom Park to the Tshwane Events Centre.

In his keynote address, Preident Zuma urged young South Africans to embrace unity in diversity, non-racialism and anti-tribalism.

“We want you to inherit that legacy of unity in diversity, non-racialism and anti-tribalism. We want you to love and respect one another as South Africans and as Africans, regardless of race, colour, creed or the mother tongue that one speaks.

“That is the South Africa that many of our illustrious leaders such as Oliver Tambo and Nelson Mandela fought very hard to build. It is the South Africa that you, as the youth, should build,” he said. – Source:
The two-leg mission kicked off in the Tete province and proceeded to Maputo. The business delegation comprised businesspeople from the built environment, electro-technical, mining and capital equipment, railways and steel fabrication, and steel tubing sectors.
The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) led a delegation of 23 businesspeople on an Outward Trade and Investment Mission (OTIM) to Mozambique from 15 to 19 June 2015.

According to the Minister of Trade and Industry, Rob Davies, the objective of the OTIM was to boost economic growth, transfer technology as well as increase the quality and diversity of South African exports to Mozambique.

“South Africa has become the main trading partner for Mozambique and relations between the two countries are very good. These relations are reinforced by the growing ties in trade, investment, tourism, migration and security,” says Minister Davies.

He added that a number of agreements to promote trade relations with Mozambique had been entered into over the years. These include the agreement on the Establishment of a Bi-National Commission, Regular Diplomatic Consultations and Cooperation of Frequency Bands.

To further cement relations between the two countries, Minister Davies said the Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement and the Agreement on One-Stop Border Posts had been put into place.

He added that the creation of the Maputo Development Corridor linking the port of Maputo with South Africa’s industrial heartland symbolised the importance of these bilateral ties between the two countries.

Total trade between South Africa and Mozambique was R43,9 billion in 2014, increasing from R39,5 billion in 2013.
As a signatory to the 1951 Geneva Refugee Convention and as a country that cherishes human rights, we have an obligation to protect the basic rights of refugees within South Africa’s borders.
Cabinet calls on all South Africans to join government on World Refugee Day, 20 June 2015, in reaffirming the country’s international commitment to treat all refugees with dignity.

In many instances, these are vulnerable men, women and children who have been forced to flee their homelands and have done so with great courage, strength and determination.
Operation Pyramid will better coordinate and align government’s and its agencies’ border projects, programmes and interventions.
The Department of Home Affairs, together with other government departments and agencies, will launch Operation Pyramid on 19 June 2015 at Skukuza, Mpumalanga, under the theme: “Working Together for Safe and Secure Borders”.

This transitional initiative will be operational until the scheduled establishment of the Border Management Agency in 2017.

The secure, effective and efficient management of the cross-border movement of people and goods will be done in a manner that is consistent with the country’s national development priorities.
The submission of South Africa’s report is in line with international treaty laws and obligations.
Cabinet recently approved that the feedback received on South Africa’s initial report on the implementation of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (2000 – 2013), be tabled in Parliament.

This report was received from the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.

Cabinet endorsed the governance mechanisms to ensure an integrated, coherent and participatory approach to the implementation of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child in compliance with the constitutional rights of children.

This report also serves as a barometer on how the nation is progressing on upholding children’s rights and well-being.
West Coast 1 would allow for an offset of an estimated 5,6 million tons of carbon dioxide over the 20-year duration of its power purchase agreement.
Aurora Wind Power has announced that it has started commercial operation of the 94MW West Coast 1 wind farm near Vredenburg in the Western Cape.

A statement from Aurora, a joint venture between Engie (formerly GDF Suez) of France; Investec Bank; and Kagiso Tiso Holdings (KTH), said the project was part of the renewable energy independent power producer procurement programme through which South Africa intended to procure 3 625 MW of renewable energy by the end of 2016 to reduce its reliance on coal and contribute to carbon emission reduction objectives.

Engie holds a 43% equity stake in the project, while Investec holds 34,5% and KTH, a leading black-owned and managed investment holding company in Africa, 20%. The remaining 2,5% has been allocated to a community trust for the purpose of developing and sustaining the surrounding community.

The construction of West Coast 1, which started in June 2013, created more than 600 jobs, 450 of which in surrounding communities. Operation of the wind farm would create permanent jobs for these communities over the 20 years of the PPA.

Aurora said the achievements of the project in terms of job creation and local content purchase had exceeded targets agreed with the South African Government. – Source:
South Africa is committed to introducing green energy into its power mix, 95% of which is coal at the moment, to redress its electricity shortages.
A government tender to install 250 MW of wind-generating capacity has been awarded to a consortium led by a wind and solar company based in Ireland.

The award was made under the fourth round of the Government's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP). The two wind farms represent an investment of about R5,9 billion.

The projects awarded under this round are: the 140-MW Kangnas wind farm located in the Nama Khoi municipality in Northern Cape and the 110-MW Perdekraal East wind farm located in the Cape Winelands district and Witzenberg local municipalities of the Western Cape.

Mainstream Renewable Power is a global developer of renewable energy projects with a current output of 17 000 MW from solar and wind farms in Ireland, South Africa, Chile and Canada.

"Renewable energy ticks three important boxes for South Africa's energy needs," said the company's managing director of onshore procurement, construction and operations, Barry Lynch. "Firstly, the cost of these projects is now cheaper than new coal-fired generation."

"Secondly, they can be brought into commercial operation at the speed required and thirdly, they meet the scale needed to address the country's growing electricity demand."

Mainstream has been awarded a total of 848 MW of wind and solar projects under this programme since the first award in 2011. It is already building three wind farms in Northern Cape totalling 360 MW, which it was awarded under round three of the REIPPPP.

In 2014, the company delivered three wind and solar facilities into commercial operation under the first round of the programme. – Source: www.News24Live
The group, which left for China on 13 June, comprises shoe manufacturers from Gauteng, Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape.
A group of 28 manufacturers has left for China to acquire skills using the three-month shoe design and manufacturing techniques capacity-building programme, said the Department of Trade and Industry (dti).

“The participants will acquire advanced skills in template-making and tailoring, designing techniques, and an ability to integrate traditional techniques with modern technological means in shoe-making,” said the dti.

The trip to Fuzhou City is facilitated by the department. Minister Rob Davies said the programme was part of the implementation of an agreement signed between South Africa and China last year.

“The Ghinese Government has agreed to support the efforts of South African Government by contributing to the upgrading of scarce skills in our textile and clothing industry.

"The capacity development programme is part of our efforts to increase the number of skilled entrepreneurs within the leather and footwear sector, in order to enhance the sector’s competitiveness,” said Minister Davies.

He said the clothing, textiles, leather and footwear (CTLF) industry was one of the priority sectors identified as key drivers of economic growth and employment creation in the Industrial Policy Action Policy Plan.

“The department has already invested close to R3,5 billion in the Clothing and Textiles Competitiveness Programme, an intervention aimed at saving the CTLF sectors.

The main impact of the programme has been the stabilisation of the sectors, the saving of over 67 000 jobs, and the creation of a significant number of new, decent and sustainable employment opportunities,” added Minister Davies. – Source:
The team will be convened by Home Affairs Minister, Malusi Gigaba.
Cabinet has resolved to set up a team of ministers from both the economic and security clusters to address concerns raised by various sectors on the new immigration laws.

“The team is expected to discuss and engage with the concerns with the aim of finding ways to address the unintended consequences brought about by the implementation of these regulations,” acting Cabinet spokesperson, Phumla Williams, said.

The new immigration legislation amendments came into effect this month. Under the new legislation, South Africans and foreign nationals travelling to and from South Africa with children under the age of 18 are required to produce unabridged birth certificates.

The implementation of the new legislation is part of government’s commitment to safeguard the best interests of children and prevent child trafficking.

“In addition, the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Migration will also continue with its work to relook all the aspects relating to migrants that are in the country.

“This work will assist to provide synergy between migration and our laws,” Williams said. – Source:
"With more than 80 years of operations and a leading position in Africa, South African Airways (SAA) has a crucial role to play in driving aviation traffic growth and economic development,"  Nico Bezuidenhout, SAA’s Acting Chief Executive, said in a press release.
SAA says it wants to focus on growing its African network and improving interconnectivity on the continent.

Speaking at the International Air Transport Industry Association Annual General Meeting in Miami, Bezuidenhout said SAA was determined to bring its premium service to more and more destinations in Africa.

“Our goal is to increase our revenue in the region by 30%. Africa is a huge potential market for aviation and as Africa’s legacy airline, we want to see the continent contribute to more than the current 3% of global aviation,” said Bezuidenhout.

SAA is already strengthening its position in West Africa with the launch of a new service between Accra, Ghana and Washington DC, United States.

Starting on 3 August, 2015, SAA will be providing the only nonstop flight between Ghana and Washington DC, as well as the only Skytrax 4-Star rated airline service and world-class quality from the entire West Africa region to North America.

The airline also said it had entered into a bilateral code-share agreement with Africa World Airlines. This airline partnership will offer SAA customers from Washington and Johannesburg seamless connectivity via Accra to other destinations in Ghana such as Kumasi, Takoradi, and Tamale as well as Lagos, Nigeria. – Source: Traveller24
South African Airways (SAA) was named Best Airline in Africa for the 13th consecutive year.
The SAA Group walked away with three awards at the annual Skytrax World Airline Awards, held at the 51st International Paris Air Show recently.

SAA also claimed the award for Best Airline Staff in Africa for the fourth time. This award is a special accolade, SAA said in a statement, as it represented the combined quality performance of an airline’s frontline staff, across the on-board cabin staff category together with the airline’s airport staff.

Mango, part of the SAA group, received the award for Best Low-Cost Airline in Africa.

Overall, SAA placed 34th in the Skytrax World Top 100 Airlines for 2015.

Mango, the only other South African carrier mentioned in the 2015 Top 100, placed 96th, one place down from last year's 95th position.

The world's best airline for 2015 was announced as Qatar Airways, which placed second in 2014. The Top 10 World's Best Airlines, along with their position in 2014 (in brackets) were awarded as such:

1. Qatar Airways (2)
2. Singapore Airlines (3)
3. Cathay Pacific Airways (1)
4. Turkish Airlines (5)
5. Emirates (4)
6. Etihad Airways (9)
7. ANA All Nippon Airways (6)
8. Garuda Indonesia (7)
9. EVA Air (12)
10. Qantas Airways (11).

Skytrax awards are directly based on customer surveys, making them the benchmarks of airline excellence. The awards are not subscriber-based or a profit-driven award programme, and are referred to as the Passengers Choice Awards for the airline industry. – Traveller24
Cape Town Tourism said in a release that it welcomed the recent announcement, saying that the airline was facilitating an important emerging market. 
“Qatar Airways is facilitating an important emerging market for Cape Town in our efforts to address seasonality.

"A large number of United Arab Emirates citizens travel to the city – and often favour our low-season months. Cape Town offers the best of shopping, nature and outdoor experiences and is known to be Halaal-friendly.

"The development of the Halaal Tourism Market is very important to us,” said Enver Duminy, CEO of Cape Town Tourism.

The announcement came as Qatar Airways celebrated a decade of service to South Africa.

Globally, a new app called Halaltrip is making it easier for Halaal visitors to keep up to date with prayer times and find their closest mosques and Halaal facilities as they travel.

The app features destination Cape Town and makes mention of restaurants such as Mezbaan, Alhambra Restaurant and Coffee Shop, Atlantic Express Cake and Coffee Train, Bokaap Kombuis, Eastern Food Bazaar, Food Inn India, Kaprinos, The Lounge on Kromboom, Pepperazzi and Zaika. – Source: Traveller24
Transport for Cape Town (TCT) received special recognition at the International Association of Public Transport (UITP) World Congress and Exhibition in Milan, Italy, recently.
The City of Cape Town has received acknowledgement on the international stage for the inroads it is making in improving public transport.

The city announced recently that the President of UITP and Commissioner of Transport for London, Sir Peter Hendy, presented TCT commissioner Melissa Whitehead with a recognition award for achievements in public transport and for establishing a transport authority to address the transport needs of residents and visitors to Cape Town.

Mayoral committee member for TCT, Brett Herron, said the award recognised all of the work that TCT was doing in pursuit of enhanced public transport – including establishing a transport authority, implementing the MyCiTi service, planning its expansion and driving towards integrated multi-modal transport.

“It recognises the irreversible gains made and the building blocks we have set down in order to achieve our objectives. It does not, however, suggest that we have achieved all of these objectives, but rather recognises the commitment, work and progress to date,” he told News24.

“The City of Cape Town is the only city in Africa to be recognised at the UITP World Congress for the effort that we are making to radically improve public transport,” said Herron.

The congress, which takes place twice a year, draws mobility professionals from all over the world. – Source:
All of the winning establishments are part of the boutique hotel group, Newmark Hotels, Reserves and Lodges. The Tripadvisor awards are based on consumer reviews.
International and domestic travellers have voted Western Cape hotels and restaurants as some of the best in the world.

The Dock House Boutique Hotel and Spa, the Victoria & Alfred Hotel and the Queen Victoria Hotel won Tripadvisor Certificates of Excellence awards. In recognition of consistently stellar service, the Victoria & Alfred Hotel earned a Hall of Fame Award.

The Dash and Oyo restaurants, based at the Queen Victoria Hotel and Victoria & Alfred Hotel, also received the accolade.

Alan Winde, MEC of Economic Opportunities, commended the establishments. “This is great news for these hotels and restaurants, and for the Western Cape’s tourism sector as a whole. Under Project Khulisa, we have the aspirational goal of adding up to a further 100 000 jobs in the tourism sector.

"Excellent service is an important factor in repeat visits. In addition, more and more travellers are turning online to plan their trips, featuring so prominently on one of the world’s biggest travel sites is excellent promotion for our destination.”
Clegg will travel to the United Kingdom to receive his OBE at a date yet to be confirmed. He hopes he can coincide it with his 20-show tour of France in October.
Johnny Clegg, the South African artist, activist and philanthropist fondly known as the "White Zulu", had been honoured with the Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), Buckingham Palace announced recently.  

"This is a recognition of Johnny's unique services to the arts, vulnerable people and children and to democracy in South Africa," said the British High Commissioner to South Africa, Judith Macgregor. "I am particularly pleased that we are able to celebrate his achievements of the past three decades.

"We continue to work with Johnny and others to ensure that the positive change that they have secured will continue to have long-lasting impact on generations to come."

Clegg said receiving the honour was a tremendous moment. "It has been a long journey of more than 30 years, from when I first began to experiment with truly South African cross-over music, and at the same time becoming a cultural activist in the struggle against apartheid," he wrote on his Facebook page.
During apartheid, his music was banned and restricted on national radio and police closed some of his shows.

The OBE revitalised his energy for activism, he said. "Having worked with the End Conscription Campaign, the trade union movement and the Free the Children in Detention Campaign, resisting forced removals of rural communities, this award re-energises those dreams and commitments in a very special way."

Clegg was born in England, but emigrated with his family when he was six months old. They settled initially in Zimbabwe, then spent a short time in Zambia before finally moving to South Africa. – Source:
The news comes just three months after Cape Town was included in the new Monopoly world edition, in honour of the game’s 80th anniversary.
Cape Town is set to have its very own version of the famous board game.

According to Cape Town Tourism, regional versions of the game have been released for the past 15 years, but Cape Town is the only South African city to have its own version.

Monopoly has always allowed players to become familiar with local tourist attractions and highlights of the city it is based on with the United Kingdom edition – featuring London – being the most widely played globally.

Now calls are being made for the public to submit ideas about how the chance and community chest cards will function, as well as which landmarks and attractions should be included.

South Africans can vote for the likes of Table Mountain, the V&A Waterfront, Kirstenbosch and Groot Constantia to be included by e-mailing

“Cape Town has long been on our list of regional Monopoly targets, and when we had the Mother City included on our anniversary edition, we knew this year was the one to bring Monopoly to Cape Town’s gorgeous shores," said Dan Taylor, Head of Monopoly, Winning Moves.

The Cape Town version of the game is expected to be on sale just before Christmas and is said to be the first of many South African Monopoly games to be launched in the next three years. – Source: www.Traveller24
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