Issue 226 | 9 June 2016
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"Let us use these positive developments to work even harder together to move South Africa forward," said President Zuma.
President Jacob Zuma has welcomed the decision by S&P to maintain South Africa's investment rating.

"I congratulate Team South Africa constituted by government, business and labour for the sterling work that has been done over the last few months to turn our economy around."

"The decision by Standard and Poor's, which follows on the footsteps of yet another encouraging decision by Moody's, demonstrates that working together we can reignite our economy, attract investment and create jobs for our people."
President Zuma conveyed his sincerest condolences to the wife of President Abdelaziz and his family during this difficult time.
President Jacob Zuma has, on behalf of the Government and people of South Africa, expressed his deepest condolences to the Saharawi people on the passing away of President Mohamed Abdelaziz, President of the SADR and Secretary-General of the Polisario Front.

President Abdelaziz committed his life to the struggle for the independence of the Saharawi people from colonisation.

He was a founding member of the Polisario Front and until his passing remained committed to the process of peaceful negotiations under the auspices of the United Nations (UN), for the holding of a referendum on the self-determination of Western Sahara.

South Africa remains committed to continue supporting the inalienable right to self-determination of the people of Western Sahara through the UN-led negotiations and with the support of the African Union.
The conference sought to reaffirm the Two-State solution as the only viable solution to the conflict.
The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, attended an international conference on the Middle East Peace Process (MEPP) in Paris, France, on 3 June at the invitation of the French Foreign Minister, Jean Marc Ayrault.

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane was joined by the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, members of the Quartet, the Arab Quartet and representatives of selected Asian countries to find a mechanism to resolve the Palestine-Israeli conflict. 

The conference was convened at a time when the Two-State solution was being threatened by the ever-expanding Jewish settlements in Palestinian lands, as well as increasing sporadic acts of violence between the Israelis and Palestinians. The conference was part of what had come to be known as the French Initiative on the MEPP, which seeks to re-kindle the Israel-Palestine dialogue, which collapsed with the failure of John Kerry’s efforts in April 2014. Since then, the tension between the Israelis and Palestinians worsened with the outbreak of the 50-Day Gaza War between June and July 2014.

The participants reaffirmed their support for a just, lasting and comprehensive resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They reaffirmed that a negotiated two-state solution was the only way to achieve enduring peace, with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security.

The participants discussed possible ways in which the international community could help advance the prospects for peace, including by providing meaningful incentives to the parties to make peace. They also highlighted the potential for regional peace and security as envisioned by the Arab Peace Initiative.

The participants highlighted the key role of the Quartet and key regional stakeholders. They welcomed the interested countries’ offer to contribute to this effort. They also welcomed France’s offer to coordinate it, and the prospect of convening before the end of the year an international conference.
Government wishes to reiterate that the security of all people in South Africa remains its top priority. The security services will continue to remain vigilant at all times. Should the need arise, the South African Government will be the first to inform the public about any eminent threat.
The South African Government takes the threat of violent extremism and terrorism very seriously. It is a global phenomenon that no nation can claim immunity from.

As part of their work, the security agencies are in constant liaison with foreign intelligence services represented in South Africa. Their work includes information exchanges on threats presented by violent extremism and terrorism.

South Africa as a sovereign peace-loving country has always adopted a professional manner in engaging with other countries on these issues. We are, therefore, displeased with the manner in which some countries have reciprocated. Their actions have been disingenuous and a cause for serious concern to our government.

The information provided as a basis for the latest terror alerts on South Africa has been found to be very sketchy. On closer examination, we have found the information to be dubious, unsubstantiated and provided by a “walk-in” source based on questionable conclusions.

It is within this context that the South African Government rejects attempts by foreign countries to influence, manipulate or control our country’s counter-terrorism work. We reject attempts to generate perceptions of government ineptitude, alarmist impressions and public hysteria on the basis of a questionable single source.

The South African Government is fully capable of securing our country, protecting our people and taking care of the safety of foreign citizens on our soil. We expect foreign embassies on our soil to follow the correct channels when communicating matters of such nature. To this end, the South African Government has démarched the affected embassies to register our displeasure with the manner in which the matter was handled. South Africa values the political, economic and social ties with these countries and will approach any discussion within the spirit of cooperation and international solidarity.
The Masterclass was led by Wits Business School's Executive in Residence, Euvin Naidoo, a Young Global Leader Alumnus
at the WEF and a member of the
WEF's Global Agenda Council.
The Minister in The Presidency responsible for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation and Chairperson of the National Planning Commission, Jeff Radebe, recently delivered the keynote address at the WEF Africa, Kigali Masterclass Debrief Session at Wits Business School.

The session built on previous Masterclass sessions at Wits aimed at discussing catalysts that could strengthen public-private collaboration on key global and regional challenges and strategic actions that could deliver shared prosperity across the continent.

Academics, students, civil-society and business leaders and the wider South African community attended the event. Key themes and messages that emerged from WEF Africa in Kigali were shared with the audience.
The forum was a platform for discussion of the most relevant issues of IT development and implementation in various spheres of life; exchange of best practices between the Russian and BRICS members' specialists; signing cooperation agreements; demonstration of the technological potential of Russian IT products and developers; and progress made in various industries.
South Africa, for the first time, participated in the two-day VIII International IT Forum in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. The Minister of Communications, Faith Muthambi, represented the country at the event that took place from 8 to 9 June.

“Science and technology can be leveraged to solve some of the biggest challenges in both our education and health systems, so this forum will provide us with an opportunity to learn the latest initiatives and projects in the ICT industry from the developers themselves,” Minister Muthambi said.

She said the ICT industry was at an exciting stage, with emerging technologies that allowed new methods and approaches to be utilised to meet industry demands.

Delegates at the forum included representatives of business, professional associations, research, educational and IT experts from BRICS member states. – Source:
The Order of Merit is the highest tribute that Germany pays to individuals for their political, economic, social and intellectual achievements.
The Federal Republic of Germany has awarded the country’s highest honour to South Africa’s Minister of Tourism, Derek Hanekom. The Order of Merit was conferred on Minister Hanekom by Ambassador Walter Lindner, on behalf of Federal President Joachim Gauck, at a ceremony in Pretoria recently.

Ambassador Lindner said the Order of Merit was made in recognition of Minister Hanekom’s contribution to cooperation between Germany and South Africa during his tenure as Minister of Science and Technology.

“I am happy that your contribution to fruitful relations between South Africa and Germany is continuing on the same high level in your position as Minister of Tourism,” said Ambassador Lindner to Minister Hanekom.

In response, Minister Hanekom said he was extremely humbled and honoured to receive the award.

“This is a tribute to all the people who are working hard to make a difference to our country. This is a big moment for all of us, and I am proud to share the honour with the people of South Africa, in recognition of the outstanding work that is being done in our country.”
The meeting was a gathering of all G20 agriculture ministers, guest countries as well as international organisations to share policy experiences and discuss innovative ways of advancing agricultural development and food production in a changing global environment.
The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Senzeni Zokwana, recently attended the G20 Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting in Xi’an, China.

One of the goals outlined by the G20 Summit of 2016 was to improve food security and nutrition. According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the world’s food production needs to be increased by 60 million from 2005 to 2050 to meet the global food demand.
The forum is an annual gathering that affords capital cities in Africa the opportunity to work together and learn from each other in developing and implementing innovative solutions for creating sustainable African cities.
The Deputy Minister for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Andries Nel, recently addressed the second ACCSF.
The forum allowed Deputy Minister Nel to further elaborate on the Integrated Urban Development Framework and its role in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 11 of creating cities that are liveable, safe and resilient.

The Deputy Minister addressed issues such as densification and the delivery of basic services.
The Minister of Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa, on 3 March 2016 signed the Host Country Agreement for CITES COP17 with the Secretary-General of CITES, John Scanlon, on the margins of an international conference on wildlife crime in The Hague, in the Netherlands.
Media registration for the 17th Conference of Parties to the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES COP17), to be hosted in Johannesburg in 2016, is open.

The conference will be held in South Africa from 24 September to 5 October 2016.

South Africa was one of the first signatories to CITES in 1975 and continues to play an active role in the enforcement of the convention.

At COP17, parties will collectively evaluate the progress made since 2013, and take decisions on what additional measures are needed to end illicit wildlife trafficking.

It will also consider a number of proposals to bring additional species under CITES trade controls, as well as tackle issues concerning livelihoods, and the review of significant trade, traceability, and the effectiveness of CITES implementation, among other things.

Media wishing to register to attend the conference may do so by visiting:
Renowned palaeontologist, Dr Robert Gess, who does consulting for SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral), said the discovery was significant because "many species have not yet been documented by palaeontologists".
A huge treasure trove of fossils, including of some species that have not been documented by scientists before, has been discovered during construction work on the N2 highway near Grahamstown.

"A number of new invertebrates, as well as excellently preserved plant fossils of the Devonian era, have been excavated and discovered in rock debris of the Witpoort Formation along the N2 between Grahamstown and Fish River," Sanral environmental manager, Mpati Makoa, announced recently.

The trove was discovered during "controlled rock-cutting explosions".

The Devonian era lasted from about 416 million years ago to 354 million years ago, and is often referred to as the "Age of Fishes" because of the varieties of fish that were spawned during that time.

Two large land masses at that time were the continent of Euramerica – which included what we now know as North America and Europe – and Gondwana, which was made up of South America, Africa, Antarctica, India and Australia.

The fossilised remains found during the roadworks are of life in a marine coastline environment when South Africa was part of Gondwana, nearly 360 million years ago.

"To advance scientific discourse and original research contributions of South African palaeontology and heritage scholars, we made provision in the environmental management programme for specialist examination and excavation of rock debris," Makoa said.  – Source:
South Africa is one of the stand-out green nations, making remarkable strides in renewable energy, says Christine Lins, the REN21 executive secretary.
The world experienced its largest increase in green, renewable energy in 2015, adding over 147 gigawatts of wind, solar and other alternative energy power to the global grid, according to the Renewables 2016 Global Status Report, released on 1 June by the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21).

According to the report, the US$1-billion (about R15,6 billion) investment in African renewable energy initiatives in 2004 increased to more than US$12 billion in 2015/16, a growth of 58%, thanks in large part to projects begun in South Africa.

South Africa was the first country on the continent to produce a gigawatt from solar power, and its contribution to wind-power generation had pushed Africa's output to more than 3 gigawatts.

Global investment in renewable energy is driven, the report states, by being both cost-competitive with traditional fossil fuels and a dynamic job creator in several countries, particularly in Africa.

"Renewable generation has created 60 000 jobs in Africa, and of those, half are in South Africa," says Lins. "This boost has been driven mainly by South Africa's successful Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme."

The programme is projected to attract another $35 billion by 2020, according to data compiled by Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

The REN21 Report confirms that governments are still key in driving renewables as a legitimate power alternative.

While 173 countries are meeting renewable energy targets in 2016, with South Africa especially making up ground in utility-scale renewable generation, a challenge still remains in effectively using residential energy production.

As has become the norm in Europe and North America, households that generate their own electricity through solar or wind power are encouraged to sell electricity back to local and national utility operations.

South Africa has the infrastructure and know-how to incentivise individual power generation to help bring renewable energy to more people, in turn lessening the reliance on fossil fuels.

The boost in South Africa's renewable energy profile, fuelled by larger and better-performing energy solutions with the full support of the Government and private enterprise is "truly remarkable", says Lins, "(particularly when) achieved at a time when fossil fuel prices were at historic lows, and renewables remained at a significant disadvantage in terms of government subsidies". – Source:
The Department of Trade and Industry (dti) has called on the electro-technical sector to participate in the West African Power Industry Convention (WAPIC) Exhibition in Lagos, Nigeria, which will take place from 23 to 24 November.
The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Mzwandile Masina, recently encouraged South African companies to apply to participate in WAPIC, before 24 June.

“WAPIC is an exhibition that gives exporting companies access to an emerging high-growth market through the provision of a platform to showcase pioneering technology and innovative products in the electro-technical sector," said Deputy Minister Masina.

The exhibition is a convergence of power professionals, spanning government, consulting, investors and utilities. It will offer opportunities for exporting companies to identify niche export opportunities.

“This exhibition will build on the successes of the dti’s participation at WAPIC 2015 by providing a lucrative platform for South African manufacturers of products and related services from the electro-technical sector to showcase South African expertise in this sector, which in turn will increase exports,” said Deputy Minister Masina.

The dti will provide assistance to the participating companies through the Export Marketing and Investment Assistance Scheme in the form of air travel, subsistence allowance, payment of exhibition space, as well as freight forwarding of display material.

WAPIC 2016 will focus on boilers/combustion systems, cables, computers/software, converters, inductors and transformers, emission control, engineering services, construction companies and generation equipment. – Source:
Volkswagen South Africa has been recognised as the top VW production plant, globally.
Volkswagen Group South Africa's (VWSA) plant in Uitenhage has been recognised as the top manufacturing plant in the global VW production network in 2015. VWSA achieved the highest index score of 113,2% among 13 plants around the world.

This was the first time that Uitenhage was rated as the top manufacturing plant since the Beetle production started in August 1951.

The 13 global Volkswagen production plants are all measured on the same key performance indicators such as production volumes, production quality, costs per unit, units produced per employee, health and safety incidents and the factory’s improvements in reducing its carbon footprint.

Key in VWSA achieving these results were the 120 000 Polos and Polo Vivos produced in 2015 at much better than budgeted cost levels. Another contributing factor was exceeding the “Think Blue Factory” targets, which were set in 2010 to reduce energy consumption, water usage, waste and emissions by 25%. By the end of 2015, VWSA had exceeded the target by 17,2%, achieving 42,2%.

Of the 120 000 cars produced in 2015, over 66 000 Polos were exported to predominantly right-hand-drive markets such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Japan and Ireland. In addition, 113 000 engines were also produced, of which 81 000 were exported to markets such as India, China and Mexico. – Source:
The company is one of the first black and woman-led companies to be allocated more than 1 000 quota through the AGOA dispensation.
Evodia Motsepe is South Africa’s first black woman poultry importer to benefit from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). She is the majority shareholder and chairperson of Mega Food Supplies, which imports, stores and supplies food to the local South African market and neighbouring countries.

In March this year, President Barack Obama issued a proclamation confirming South Africa’s eligibility to continue to participate in AGOA. The entry of United States (US) poultry into South Africa was required as a condition for avoiding South Africa’s suspensions under AGOA. 

As a part of the AGOA agreement, 50% of the 65 000 ton annual quota is being set aside for historically disadvantaged individual importers.

As part of the training and development plan organised by the USA to empower small poultry farmers under the AGOA programme, Evodia and her husband, Sol, will attend the Second US-Africa Business Forum in New York in September at the behest of the US Commercial Services.

The forum is co-hosted by the United Nations General Assembly, Bloomberg Philanthropies and US Department of Commerce. The day will be focussed on increased trade and investment between the USA and African nations and will feature more than 50 heads of states, global CEOs and senior government executives.

Evodia received confirmation to attend the Cochran Fellowship Programme during a visit by US Senator, Christopher Coons, at her Mega Food Supplies factory in Heriotdale, Johannesburg.

She will be joined by five other importers and a government official from the Department of Trade and Industry. – Source:
It says a South Europe hub has been established to now service South Africa’s fifth-biggest source market in Europe, with the office based in Paris. 
SAT says it has closed its Italy office with services for the France and Italy markets to operate from a South Europe hub in Paris going forward.

The tourism body announced the closure of its Italy office, effective 31 May, saying "it is continuously exploring better operating models to reduce overhead, improve marketing effectiveness and improve return on investment in markets".

"The hub model will allow SAT to increase efficiency of selling our beautiful country without the cost of a physical office," says Sthembiso Dlamini, acting CEO for SAT, who thanked the entire SAT Italy team for their continued commitment as the strategy for the Italian market is implemented.

Dlamini also thanked the Italy Country Manager, Lance Littlefield, who after 12 years of service to growing the country’s tourism industry has made the decision to leave the organisation following the closure. Littlefield joined SAT as part of a three-year sabbatical, which turned into what he described as "a 12-year love affair with the country". – Source: Traveller24
The Earth Hour City Challenge aims to mobilise action by and support from cities in the global transition towards a sustainable energy future.
The Mayor of Tshwane, Kgosientso Ramokgopa, recently heard that his city had won the Africa leg of the Earth Hour Competition for its consistent green policies.

He was one of 25 of the continent's mayors attending the second African Capital Cities Sustainability Forum at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in Pretoria.

Kobie Brand, director of ICLEI Africa, said Tshwane Metro was a shining example of the development and implementation of green energy by-laws.

It will now face stiffer competition with Singapore, Jakarta and Paris.

Green economies were discussed at the week-long conference to try to counter the challenges of rapid urbanisation, including access to housing, land, energy, basic services and information technology.
South African pilots‚ a flight engineer‚ doctor and advanced life-support paramedic made history recently by performing the first airborne medical evacuation of a critically ill baby from the island of St Helena.
ER24’s aeromedical service‚ ER24 Global Assist‚ in collaboration with the Government of St Helena‚ successfully touched down on the island’s new airport aboard a Dassault Falcon 20 jet – despite the airport being closed due to dangerous and unpredictable wind shear conditions.

The crew were taken to Jamestown Hospital after landing on 3 June, where they assessed the critically ill baby. Due to safety precautions‚ they stayed overnight and departed on a return journey to Cape Town where the baby was transported to hospital on 4 June.

“It was a long trip‚ but the baby is doing well. The baby and mom were safely handed over to the receiving doctor at the hospital‚” said Ilze Milbert‚ ER24’s Global Assist Fixed Wing Coordinator.

The jet is equipped with two state-of-the-art intensive care beds with monitors‚ ventilators and enough space to ensure paramedics and doctors have access to patients. There is also enough room for a family member‚ in this case the infant’s mother‚ to accompany a patient.

St Helena has for decades relied on ships as a means of transport to and from the island‚ a journey that takes days. The recently completed St Helena Airport has been found‚ after test flights‚ to be dangerous due to severe wind shear conditions that make landings difficult. This was the case during a recent test flight using a British Airways Boeing 737 from South Africa.

The aeromedical team‚ which included three pilots‚ a flight engineer‚ a medical doctor and advanced life support paramedic‚ had their work cut out for them‚ said ER24.

The jet departed from Lanseria International Airport in Johannesburg and made a technical stopover at Walvisbay‚ in Namibia‚ where the crew evaluated weather conditions at St Helena. – Source: TMG Digital
Durban will be hosting the Port Festival from 18 to 19 June 2016.
Expect two days of port-side fun with the Durban Port Festival, as part of the Transnet National Ports Authority’s (TNPA) efforts to reconnect communities with its ports.

The focus of the festival will be on community development, tourism, leisure, recreation, career and business opportunities and community engagement at the Port of Durban, Wilson’s Wharf and the Durban passenger terminal’s N-shed.

There will be activities for all ages, including tours of South African Navy ships, tugboat rides, a careers exhibition focussing on maritime vocations, a special kids’ zone, live entertainment and an array of other waterside and land-side activities. There will also be a craft market and food stalls where goodies can be purchased from local stallholders.

TNPA’s Durban Port Manager, Moshe Motlohi, says the idea behind the port festivals is to bring communities closer to the ports – something which has been restricted since the advent of the global ISPS code of safety and security for ports.

“We as the port authority are compelled to ensure that the ports offer positive and sustainable spin-offs to their surrounding communities. The port festivals are a workable solution to make our ports more community friendly and expose the public to the opportunities available in this sector through a range of edutainment activities,” he said.

So far, East London, Richards Bay and Cape Town have all held successful port festival relaunches – and now it is the turn of the country’s largest and busiest commercial port.

The Durban Port Festival will run alongside the South African Navy’s World Hydrography Day celebrations (WHD – officially held on 21 June) in and around the port city. WHD highlights the important role that the South African Navy plays by ensuring safe navigation for ships.

The most popular attraction will undoubtedly be the opening of SA Navy ships to the public, making it an ideal opportunity to show the kids an on-board real-life navy vessel experience.

Tours will include the SAS Protea and SAS Drakensberg, and possibly offshore patrol vessels that may be stationed in the Port of Durban, according to Transnet. – Source:
The Art Deco style had its hey-days between world wars one and two and achieved its prevalence in Springs, as this was also the period that characterised the greatest growth in the history of the town.
In many cities around the world, Art Deco architecture is highly prized. Even in Johannesburg there are meant to be at least 100, many of them national monuments. But that isn't the city in South Africa with the most buildings in this distinctive design.

The city of Springs boasts the largest number of small-scale Art Deco buildings in the world, outside of Miami in the United States. The style, which has become synonymous with the coastal Florida city, is achieving more and more attention as a potential tourism money-spinner for Springs.

By the mid-1930s Springs was one of the six largest towns in South Africa and was mentioned in the same breath as Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth. Particularly in the field of architecture, Springs took the lead away from the mining architecture of its origins into an industrial age of opportunity.

The term Art Deco had its origins with the international exhibition “Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Modernes” held in Paris, France, 1925. Shortened to Arts Deco, later to become known as Art Deco, the style developed principally from exotic African and Eastern art forms.

The style centred on designs of mysterious and romantic animals, the sun, fountains and organic motifs while cubists such as Picasso and Braque, futurists such as Severini, Boccini and Marinetti and the surrealism of Dali and Cocteau influenced Art Deco greatly.

Also in Springs, amid its own phenomenal growth of the gold mining era, Art Deco architecture developed with a character all of its own by combining the elements of streamlined, tropical and industrial Art Deco with the more reserved classical style.

Some of the best examples of the Art Deco building style is evident in the Central Fire Station, opened on 13 July 1938 and designed by a Mr Anifantakis. It reminds strongly of the Johnson Wax Building in Wisconsin designed by renowned architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, and was erected between 1936 and 1939. – Source:
The forum, set to take place from 26 to 30 June 2016, is intended to identify key gaps, build solidarity and maximise synergies between networks while strategising innovative sustainability solutions for all.
The Eighth Findhorn International Forum on Sustainability (FISF) is a by-invitation gathering of 30 global leaders selected from a broad spectrum of industries. Nicola Jackman and Mbali Vilakazi have been selected as the first representatives from South Africa.

"We are honoured to have this opportunity to grow within the Findhorn community. We are excited at the prospect of sharing space with all the forward-thinking global leaders attending FISF, acquiring new knowledge and skills and sharing our perspectives. We are confident that we will return home inspired and better equipped to make our contribution towards building South Africa."

Previous delegates include former Executive Director of Greenpeace, Paul Gilding; United States congressman, Dennis Kucinich; Adviser to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Executive Secretary, Kirsty Schneeberger; and MBE and Chairperson of the United Kingdom Sustainable Development Commission, Jonathon Porritt. – Source:
The awards, which were held for the first time in eThekwini, saw an array of spectacular live performances and electrifying mash-ups that kept the energy levels and anticipation at fever pitch throughout the evening. The ceremony was broadcast live on SABC1.
Afro-soul sensation Nathi Mankayi was crowned king of the 22nd Annual South African Music Awards at the Durban ICC on 3 June 2016, beating stiff challenges from established superstars and fellow newcomers alike.

Nathi, whose album, Buyelekhaya, and single, Nomvula, sent the nation into a collective swoon last year, scooped five awards at #SAMA22 – for Best R&B/Soul/Reggae Album, Best Newcomer (supported by Apple Music), Best Male Artist, Best-selling Full-track Music Download and Best-selling Album of the Year.

Nipping at the young Eastern Cape-born hitmaker’s heels was iconic DJ and producer Black Coffee, with four #SAMA22 trophies on the night – for Best Dance Album, Best Engineered Album and Album of the Year (served hot by Nescafé) for Pieces of Me, as well as the International Achievement Award in recognition of his meteoric rise in the global dance scene.

The highly contested Amstel Record of the Year Award, which is the only public voting category of the night, went to Roll Up by Emtee, after South Africa’s avid music fans scrambled to vote using the #SAMA22 USSD platform ahead of the cut-off time during the awards ceremony.

“We extend our warmest congratulations to all the nominees and victors, but in truth, South African music was the real winner here tonight,” said an elated Refiloe Ramogase, CEO of the South African Music Awards.

“The quality of the recordings and live performances celebrated at #SAMA22 bears testimony to the fact that South African music is in a highly innovative, world-beating and dynamic place at the moment. It certainly appears that the sky’s the limit for our exceptional community of South African musicians.” – Source:
The six-hour mini-series titled, Madiba, is said to be released in 2016 and is based on two books written by Nelson Mandela: Conversations With Myself and Nelson Mandela By Himself.
Terry Pheto will star alongside Hollywood actor, Lawrence Fishburne, in the United States mini-series, Madiba.

Drum recently reported that Pheto would portray the role of Nelson Mandela's ex-wife, Winnie, while actor, Hlomla Dandala, will take on the role of Thabo Mbeki's late father, Govan.

Lawrence Fishburne will star as Nelson Mandela in the series while Orlando Jones will star as Oliver Tambo. – Source:
Former "Top Gear" hosts, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May, will host a new motoring show on streaming service Amazon Prime. It's called Grand Tour (GT) and its first episode will be filmed in South Africa.
Former Top Gear host and presenter of new motoring show, GT, Jeremy Clarkson, has announced the first location of the new show – it's South Africa!

The first episode of GT, hosted by Clarkson, Hammond and May, will be filmed in Johannesburg on 17 July.

The show will be housed in "a large tent" with different studio locations around the world. – Source:
Earlier this year, Telkom indicated its intention to support local athletes. Telkom has a long history of supporting the Olympics, having sponsored teams attending the Athens and Beijing Olympics in 2004 and 2008 respectively, as well as the London Paralympics in 2012.
Telkom recently announced that it would be the official Olympic sponsor of the South African Olympic and Paralympics teams.

The multimillion rand sponsorship will allow the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee to expand Team SA, including more qualifying athletes, giving local talent an opportunity to compete on the world’s greatest sporting stage.

Telkom will also be adding R4 million to the medal incentive pot, to be shared between both the Olympic and Paralympic stars.

“Telkom is honoured to be able to partner with our national Olympics team as they test themselves in the world’s most demanding sporting competition. Their dedication to the Olympic motto of faster, higher, stronger, resonates with all of us as we strive to always be better than we were,” said Sipho Maseko, Telkom Group Chief Executive Officer.

Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula welcomed the announcement.

“The Olympics is the biggest sporting event of our time. With the backing of one of South Africa’s largest corporates to smooth their journey, I have no doubt that our team will do us proud. We are doing this for the future of our young people,” he said.

“We welcome Telkom’s sponsorship because it will enable more elite athletes to achieve their Olympic dreams, and in the process, inspire the next generation,” said Telecommunications and Postal Services Minister Siyabonga Cwele.

The 2016 Olympic Games will take place from 5-21 August in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The 2016 Paralympic Games, also hosted by Rio de Janeiro, are scheduled for 7-18 September. – Source:
South African athletes delivered superb all-round performances on 2 June, with five competitors finishing among the top two in their respective events at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Rome.
Sprinter Wayde van Niekerk, middle-distance specialist Caster Semenya and javelin thrower Sunette Viljoen all secured victory at the fifth of 14 legs in the top-flight international campaign.

Van Niekerk, competing in his first international race of the season, won the men's 400-m race in 44.19 seconds, just 0.08 outside the season's best he set in his home town of Bloemfontein at the ASA Open Championships last month.

He led off the final bend and drew clear to cross the line well ahead of Grenada's Bralon Taplin who finished second in 44.43.
Semenya was perhaps even more dominant, charging to victory in 1:56.64 to equal the world lead she set in Rabat less than two weeks earlier in the women’s 800m.

Sitting back for most of the race, as she has done throughout the season, Semenya launched a late assault down the home straight to win convincingly for the third Diamond League two-lap contest this year, with Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi securing second position in 1:58.20.

In warm, humid conditions, Viljoen snatched victory with a best heave of 61.95m.

While this was well short of her own world lead, she edged out Madara Palameika of Latvia (61.92) to bag another morale-boosting win.

Two other Suoth African athletes continued to stick their hands up in the early stages of the international campaign, both earning second place in their events.

Victor Hogan launched a 64.03-m heave in the fifth round, less than a metre short of Polish athlete Robert Urbanek, and after a conservative start, Wenda Nel stormed down the finishing straight to clock a season's best of 54.61 in the women's 400-m hurdles, with Janeive Russell of Jamaica crossing the line in 53.96 to rack up a new world lead.

Ruswahl Samaai ended fourth in the men's long jump with a leap of 8.16m, with Luvo Manyonga taking seventh place (8.03m), while comeback speedster Akani Simbine (10.13) grabbed fifth spot in the men's 100-m dash, which was won by American Justin Gatlin in 9.93. – Source:
South African surfski paddlers dominated the 40th annual Maui Jim Molokai Challenge in Hawaii on 29 May 2016, with Jeep Team’s Hank McGregor leading the charge to claim his third Maui Jim title in relentlessly flat and windless ocean conditions.
McGregor finished the 53k-m surfski ultra marathon in 3h45, with fellow South Africans, Sean Rice and Jasper Mocke, finishing second and third respectively in 3h47 and 3h48.

The Maui Jim Molokai Challenge is the world’s oldest surfski race, and also one of the longest and toughest marathons, set across the Kaiwi Channel, between the Hawaiian islands of Molokai and Oahu. Called the "Channel of Bones" by Hawaiians, the channel is renowned for unpredictable, and often extreme, weather conditions that can change in seconds.

2016 was one of the toughest Maui Jim Molokai Challenges in recent years, with paddlers competing in uncomfortably hot and humid conditions, with no downwind to speak of, which saw the race turn into a strategic test of physical strength and endurance.

Said McGregor, "Last year, I came so close to winning, so to come back and win now is awesome, and everything that I had hoped for. It was hot and brutal out there – probably one of the toughest surfski races I’ve ever done, and yet again living up to its name. Congrats to all my fellow countrymen that did so well!"

McGregor first won the race in 2009, followed by a second victory in 2014. In 2015, he led the field until the final two kilometres when Australians Cory Hill and Clint Robinson pipped him to the finish line. – Source:
Murray finally added the senior title to his two junior championships-winning performances from 2007 and 2008 finishing the a 10-km run, 40-km cycle and 5-km run event in 1 hour, 42 minutes and 18 seconds on 4 June.
Tenacious South African triathlete, Richard Murray, recently made a stunning comeback from injury, winning his maiden ITU Duathlon World title in Avile, Spain, two months after he broke his collarbone.

This was his first multidiscipline competition since crashing on the bike leg at the World Triathlon Series race in Gold Coast, Australia, in April when he broke his collarbone.

“This is my first senior world title … kind of surreal,” Murray said. “I could not be happier, not only with the title, but with the way my body responded.

“Now it is onwards and upwards from here, but first thing tomorrow I will be in the swimming pool working on the strokes.”

Murray underwent surgery almost eight weeks ago where he had a plate and screws inserted for the breaks in his shoulder.

He was in top form before the crash, defending his New Plymouth World Cup title in the sprint distance triathlon race in New Zealand and finishing second at the World Triathlon Series opener in Abu Dhabi.

Triathlon South Africa national coach, Lindsey Parry, said the victory would not only boost Murray’s morale but would also send a warning to his competitors that he was on the comeback trail.

Parry said it was Murray’s long-time dream to win the senior Duathlon title, and finally achieving this would buttress his Olympic ambitions. – Source: Cape Times
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