Issue 282 | 29 June 2017
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The first decade of the South Africa-Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Bi-National Commission (BNC) was largely consumed by efforts of assisting the DRC in areas of institutional capacity-building, says President Jacob Zuma.
“This included the training of the DRC national army, police and diplomats; providing technical electoral support; as well as conducting the important public service census,” President Zuma said on Sunday, 25 June.

He was speaking in Pretoria during the 10th Session of the South Africa-DRC BNC, which was attended by President Joseph Kabila Kabange of the DRC.

President Zuma said South Africa and the DRC had used the BNC mechanism to identify critical areas of cooperation.

The BNC, which was co-chaired by the two heads of state, is aimed at further deepening bilateral and economic relations between the two countries.

He said projects that should be pursued with great vigour included the Grand Inga Hydro Power Project for electricity production for economic development.

“We also need to continue to prioritise cooperation in such critical areas as defence and security, infrastructure, energy, agriculture, trade and investment, mining, health and capacity-building, to mention but a few,” President Zuma said.

President Kabila said the DRC had identified energy as a strategic area of cooperation."

“This is an area that I think we should push very hard in order for us to start seeing signs of success. Work has been done but yet a lot still needs to be done. The future is also economic cooperation, infrastructure and mining.

At the end of the meeting, South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, read a joint communiqué by the two countries.

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said during the meeting, commitments regarding cooperation in projects in the fields of politics and governance, defence and security, economy, finance and infrastructure were made.

“Both heads of states called for the full implementation of the Grand Inga Treaty that was signed on 29 October 2013 between the DRC and South Africa.

“In this regard, they encouraged the African financial institutions to assist in the implementation of the Grand Inga Project,” she said.

Furthermore, they noted the positive development with regard to an immigration agreement which would facilitate movement of diplomats and officials of the two countries.

“They urged ministers whose mandate this resides with to make the necessary arrangements to sign this agreement expeditiously, as all legal requirements have been complied with,” Minister Nkoana-Mashabane said.

She said the two heads of state witnessed the signing of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the
Cross-Boarder Road Transport Agency and of the office of management of Multi-Model Freight.

The two heads of state also used the occasion of the 10th Session of the BNC to exchange views on regional, continental and international issues.

On Saturday, 24 June, Minister Nkoana-Mashabane hosted her counterpart from the DRC, Léonard She Okitundu. – Source:
President Jacob Zuma recently concluded a successful visit to the Kingdom of Swaziland, where he led the South African delegation at the Fifth Southern African Customs Union (SACU) Summit Heads of State and Government.
The purpose of the summit was for the heads of state and government to consider the report of the council on the progress made on the implementation of the Roadmap to reinvigorate the SACU Work Programme, endorsed by heads of state and government on 12 November 2015, in Windhoek, Namibia.

The summit endorsed the Work Programme based on the outcomes of the Third Ministerial Retreat, which outlines detailed activities, key deliverables and the timelines within which the proposed activities will be undertaken, focusing on the following:
  • review and development of a suitable architecture for tariff-setting, rebates, duty drawbacks and trade remedies
  • review of the revenue-sharing formula and the long-term management of the Common Revenue Pool
  • establishment of the Stabilisation Fund and exploring the feasibility of a financing mechanism for regional industrialisation
  • identifying financing options for regional projects 
  • development of public policy interventions to promote and align industrial development and value chains.
The summit also focused much attention on the negotiations for the review of the 2002 SACU Agreement, to facilitate the development of SACU economies.

Also emphasised during the summit was the common challenges experienced by SACU economies that can be better dealt with in an integrated manner regionally.

The summit agreed on the establishment of two ministerial task teams on trade and industry and on finance with their terms of reference, to facilitate the urgent implementation of the Work Programme.

President Zuma appealed to the member states of SACU to advance intra-trade relations in the region, saying “it will help ease the burden of poverty and unemployment facing many people across the countries that are part of the union”.

“I would like to like to also thank the Council of Ministers for having laid the foundation to facilitate the development of SACU economies. SACU needs to move beyond its colonial history and architecture into an arrangement that facilitate growth of the region”, said President Zuma.

Botswana will be the Chair of SACU effective from July 2017 to 14 July 2018, taking over from the Kingdom of Swaziland.
President Zuma said the people of South Africa shared the loss of the people of Botswana and stood with them in this time of grief and mourning.
President Jacob Zuma has conveyed his heartfelt condolences to the President of the Republic of Botswana, Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama, as well as the Government of Botswana following the passing away on 22 June 2017 of former President Sir Ketumile Masire.

President Zuma said the late former President Masire, as one of the founders of the Botswana Democratic Party, will be remembered as one of the key figures in Africa’s independence struggle. Sir Masire served as President between 1980 and 1998.

President Zuma added that former President Masire championed regional and continental integration through the Southern African Development Community and the then Organisation of African Unity.
The launch of the Musina Intermodal Terminal (MIT) was a huge boost to the regional economic integration and Special Economic Zones (SEZ) Programme, the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, said.

Minister Davies, who was speaking during the launch of the MIT in Musina in Limpopo, said the MIT would contribute immensely to the regional economic integration that South Africa, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region and the continent at large was working hard for. According to Minister Davies, the MIT addressed a number of policies of government and the promotion of regional economic integration.

The terminal, which is aimed at the containerised cargo market and the transportation of mineral ores such as coal, iron ore, chrome, copper and sulphur, was a stepping stone to bigger projects within and around the newly-designated Musina-Makhado SEZ. The SEZ will significantly increase industrial production in the region.

This will include steel and related inputs for producing steel and stainless steel, as well as increasing mining development and production. The SEZ will thus increase trade between South Africa and its neighbours. "Regional integration will also be deepened," added Minister Davies. He said that the project was designed to improve trade, which was key to the regional integration agenda.

Minister Davies further announced that the SADC tariff agreement with the east corridor would be finalised in July 2017 and said it was going to present new trading opportunities and open new markets for trading. The Chairperson of MIT, Dr Morley Nkosi, described the project as one which would accelerate economic growth and development in the region, drive increased foreign and domestic direct investment, increase value-added exports, create jobs and build industrial clusters and regional industrial hubs.

He added that the intermodal movement of cargo from road to rail and vice versa would result in reduced carbon emissions, logistics costs and road congestion, as approximately 62 000 vehicle trips per annum are removed from the region's roads. The MIT is one of the key support facilities for the newly designated Musina-Makhado SEZ, especially the Energy and Metallurgical Cluster with an investment of over R40 billion in at least eight large-scale industrial projects, including a power station, a coking coal plant, ferrosilicon plant, a steel plant and a stainless steel plant.

Once fully implemented, the zone is expected to create a total employment of more than 20 000. MIT would also award 10 bursaries in logistics and transport to deserving students with Matric from the area. – Source: African News Agency
The Minister of Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa, says South Africa’s programmes, particularly the National Development Plan (NDP): Vision 2030, demonstrates the country’s commitment to sustainable and climate-smart development.
“South Africa’s short-, medium- and long-term vision is to contribute towards an environmentally sustainable, climate-change resilient, low-carbon economy and just society,” Minister Molewa said at the recent third Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) Meeting of Ministers of Environment in Tianjin, China.

The NDP is South Africa’s blueprint to eliminate poverty and reduce inequality by 2030. The plan, Minister Molewa said, contained 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and targets, something that acutely highlights the “scale and ambition of the new universal climate agenda”.

“They [SDGs] are integrated and indivisible, and balance the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and environmental dimensions,” Minister Molewa said.

South Africa, the Minister said, had also adopted the Climate Change Response Policy. The policy represents South Africa’s vision for an effective climate-change response, and the long-term transition to a climate-resilient and lower-carbon economy and society.

BRICS Ministers’ Forum

The ministers’ meeting was an opportunity to deliberate on the implementation, financing and creation of an enabling environment for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and emerging global environmental issues.

Minister Molewa said emphasis must be placed on the importance of the means of implementation of the SDGs, and the continued financial assistance for developing countries through official development assistance.

Minister Molewa reiterated the importance of developed countries to continue to honour their historic obligations and responsibilities, as part of the commitments made in the context of the global partnership for development.

“We must work together in mobilising sufficient, adequate and predictable financial resources for the implementation of the SDGs. Without the means of implementation, we will not be able to achieve much. The adoption of the SDG indicators and work plan will be a significant step in the way forward on tracking the implementation of the SDGs,” Minister Molewa said.

Minister Molewa welcomed the agreement at the BRICS meeting to develop clearly defined programmes, such as the BRICS Clean Rivers Umbrella Programme.

The BRICS Ministers of Environment adopted the Partnership for Urban Environmental Sustainability Initiative (PUESI).

PUESI identifies water and air pollution prevention, waste management, spatial planning and mobility as priority areas for cooperation. The partnership envisions the promotion of sustainable development in urban areas, aiming to build a knowledge hub to facilitate sharing of policies and best practices for urban sustainability, and to provide an interface for information exchange and communication between suppliers and users of environmentally friendly technologies and products.

Minister Molewa said the BRICS PUESI, if implemented in a holistic manner, had the potential to contribute significantly to the reduction of pollution and waste.

The ministerial meeting also discussed the issue of drought and desertification, and continued commitment to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification to mitigate the effects of drought in vulnerable countries, particularly in Africa. – Source:
Ya Toivo, who died recently at the age of 92, was laid to rest on Saturday, 24 June, at the Heroes' Acre in Windhoek.
The Minister of Communications, Ayanda Dlodlo, represented South Africa at the funeral of the Namibian freedom fighter, Andimba Toivo ya Toivo.

The highly respected Namibian liberation icon and freedom fighter has been described as a strong-willed and determined individual who was conscientious and ethical.

President Jacob Zuma expressed his sadness on the passing of Ya Toivo.

“On behalf of the Government and the people of the Republic of South Africa, I solemnly reiterate our sincere condolences to Namibian President, His Excellency Hage Geingob, the Toivo ya Toivo family, the Government and the people of Namibia, as well as the South West African Peoples’ Organisation (SWAPO).

“May the soul of this giant leader and icon of the struggles of both South Africa and Namibia rest in eternal peace,” said President Zuma.

The veteran, who was also a former Robben Island prisoner and recipient of the 2009 Order of the Companions of OR Tambo, co-founded the Namibian liberation party, SWAPO. – Source:
Gauteng Premier, David Makhura, has been appointed to serve as one of the co-presidents of the Board of Directors of Metropolis.
The appointment was made at the body’s 12th World Congress, which was held in Montreal, Canada, recently.

“Premier Makhura’s appointment bodes well with the Gauteng City Region International Relations Strategy, which aims to ensure that the province’s international engagement and agreements are conducted in a manner that supports the implementation of the Provincial Government’s bold plan of Transformation, Modernisation and Reindustrialisation and its 10-pillar programme,” the Gauteng Provincial Government said.

The role of co-presidents is to promote allocated political portfolios and to represent Metropolis globally in respect of these portfolios.

Other current co-presidents are the mayors of Barcelona, Berlin, Montreal, Sȃo Paulo and Guangzhou.

Metropolis is a global network of major cities and city regions that serves as a hub to explore issues, including governance and concerns common to all big cities, metropolitan governments, regions, provinces and state governments.

The organisation has been in existence for 32 years and Gauteng has been a member since 2008. It currently represents the authorities of 138 great cities and metropolitan areas in Africa, America, Caribbean, Asia, Pacific and Europe.

The 12th World Congress took place in Montreal, Canada, from 19 to 22 June. – Source:
South African Airways (SAA) has been crowned as one of the winners at the World Airline Awards for 15 consecutive years.
The airline won the Best Staff Service Award as part of the highly acclaimed international awards held at the Paris Air Show recently. The awards are run by aviation experts Skytrax.

SAA also managed to retain its 4-Star rating for the 15th year in a row.

“To win the Best Staff Service Award shows that our customer-facing employees are our true brand ambassadors, who made a difference to more than 19 million travelling customers. Feedback on excellent customer service is simply priceless,” SAA General Manager:  Operations, Zuks Ramasia, said.

These awards are based on unsolicited customer feedback, which makes them the benchmark of airline excellence.

“Being an award winner for 15 years in a row inspires us to seek further opportunities for service excellence as the airline moves towards a brighter future. Customer feedback is very important, and we incorporate customer feedback and insights gained therefrom into improving the overall customer experience,” said Ramasia.

The national carrier says it has maintained quality levels on all the services it offers.

“This has been a particularly difficult year for the industry, but we still maintained a world-class product and service standards for our customers, making our 4-Star Airline rating well deserved.”

The 4-Star rating follows after detailed product and service standards audits throughout the airline, and included SAA’s new Airbus A330-300 aircraft. – Source:
In just a short period of time since its last flights increase, Pan-Africa's low-cost airline, fastjet, has announced yet another increase in the number of flights on its route between Johannesburg and Harare, and launched a fifth seasonal flight from Harare to Victoria Falls, in response to strong passenger demand.
Currently operating four weekly flights from Harare to Vic Falls, fastjet will now offer up to three daily return flights on its route between Johannesburg and Harare, with effect from 1 July 2017.

According to the airline, the addition of 12 flights per week on this strategic route between the two cities will provide passengers added flexibility to manage their diaries – a particularly important consideration for business travellers who travel this route frequently.

The airline says the added fifth weekly flight on Mondays between 17 July and 11 September on its route between Harare and Victoria Falls is due to seasonal demand. 

By offering a total of 50 flights per week to and from Zimbabwe with the newly announced schedule, fastjet says it will be taking people places and offering passengers more convenient travel options – whether for business of leisure – at affordable fares.

“fastjet has realised considerable success in attracting travellers to its service between Johannesburg and Harare as well as domestically between Harare and Victoria Falls,” says fastjet’s spokesperson, Hein Kaiser.

In addition, the airline suggests that travellers book 21 days in advance of their intended departure date to take advantage of its best priced, all-inclusive fares. – Source: Traveller24
South Africa's domestic car rental prices are the second-cheapest in the world, one quarter the price of a comparable car rental in New York, according to a 2016 survey by Deutsche Bank.
The findings were recently detailed by local car rental company, Avis, stating that the survey reinforces what the car rental industry has been saying for years — "South African car rental offers some of the best value in the world”.

"Value is a critical conversation for the industry, especially given the common misconception that domestic car rental pricing is expensive," says Lance Smith, head of sales at Avis southern Africa.

According to the survey, local car rental prices rank only behind China in terms of a like-for-like dollar adjusted rate per day benchmark.

Smith states the Deutsche Bank study uses Avis Budget Group LLC data and highlights that the relative size of China’s rental market should be taken into consideration since it is "a comparatively small rental market given that most vehicles are hired with chauffeurs".

The dollar price of South Africa car rentals has halved in the past four years – from $69.30 in 2012 to $35 in 2016 – with the data showing South Africa’s car rental rates came to $35 per day – about R450 at $12.88/$.

While Avis says it is doing its best to remain competitive, Smith says: "When one looks at the rates international travellers pay, South Africa is almost unbeatable”.

Overall, it does reinforce that South Africa remains an affordable country for visitors and travellers also keeping in mind that The Telegraph recently released its list of the top 22 cheapest cities in the world in 2017 – with South African cities Jozi and Pretoria making the list. – Source:
The BHV is showcasing the South African way of life, the creative energy of the Rainbow Nation and its international design and cultural capitals: Johannesburg and Cape Town.
14 June 2017 marked the grand opening of a novel South African exhibition at the illustrious Le BHV Marais in Paris – a department store of the group of Galeries Lafayette.

The project, championed by Artlogic, This is Cape Town and Le BHV Marais, is seeing close to 40 South African exhibitors retailing their luxury wares in Paris from 14 June until 31 July 2017.

Le BHV Marais lies in the heart of Paris. It is situated within the 4th Borough, which is a historical and cultural hub that attracts more visitors than any other. It is surrounded by some of the most renowned tourist sites of the capital, Notre Dame and the Pompidou Centre. With over 60 000 daily visitors, the store presents an invaluable opportunity of exposing international audiences and buyers to the electric pulse of a South African creative energy that will redefine the art of fine living.

For the summer of 2017, the BHV will be adorned with South African colours from storefronts through to curated interior displays, presenting a new take on refinement and elegance. The department store will house a selection of artisanal South African brands across various design categories, namely: fashion, furniture, accessories, beauty, homeware and decor – all in full fusion.

A project of this proportion, led by a prominent international retailer, is the first of its kind in Paris.

Along with Artlogic, This is Cape Town and Le BHV Marais, other partners have come on board to pilot this defining trade and export initiative. The South African Exhibition in Paris is proudly supported by Brand South Africa, the Department of Small Business Development, the Department of Arts and Culture, South African Tourism and the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency in South Africa. – Source:
After its success on the local circuit, “Beyond the River” is set to hit cinemas outside our borders.
According to a statement released by Heartlines, the company behind the inspirational local film, requests have been streaming in as far afield as Belgium, Australia, Argentina, Britain and Tasmania.

“We have received several messages from international canoe clubs, expats as well as locals who didn’t manage to see the film in cinemas. Beyond the River tackles universal themes around trust, understanding and tolerance; we want to make it available to audiences far and wide,” says Heartlines CEO and Beyond the River Executive Producer, Dr Garth Japhet. 

Inspired by the true story of Piers Cruickshanks and Siseko Ntondini, who together competed in one of the toughest river races, the Dusi Canoe Marathon, the widely-acclaimed locally produced film is an adventure drama, which highlights racial tension, inequality and social gaps.

South Africans who didn’t see the film in cinemas can catch it on DSTV’s Box Office from 24 June, and on DVD for rental or retail from mid-July.
South African commercials director Sunu scooped some major awards, including Gold, at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity recently … for an Absolut campaign that celebrates the creative revolution taking place across Africa.
Egg Films’ Sunu scooped Gold, two Silvers and Bronze in the Entertainment, Entertainment for Music and Media categories at the world’s most prestigious advertising awards.

Sunu won for directing the music videos and brand films for One Source, Native VML’s campaign for Absolut starring Khuli Chana, Sarkodie, Victoria Kimani and other African musicians.

“For a long time, South African creatives looked overseas for inspiration,” says Sunu, who shot One Source in Ghana.

“In contrast, One Source is a celebration of the creative revolution taking place across the continent as we embrace who we are as Africans.

“All credit to Native VML, Absolut and Pernod Ricard for seeing the opportunity in showcasing Africa in a completely different light on a global stage.”

Khuli, Native VML’s Jason Xenopoulos and Ryan McManus, and Pernod Ricard’s Melanie Campbell presented One Source as a case study on the mainstage during Cannes Lions – an honour in itself, considering other speakers included the likes of Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, Nobel Peace Prize winner Juan Manuel Santos, and stars like A$AP Rocky, Steven Gerrard and Halle Berry.

One Source
topped South Africa’s iTunes charts and was nominated for Best Music Video at the South African Music Awards and Metro FM Awards. The campaign was also the most nominated and most awarded campaign at South Africa’s Bookmarks.

“This was a collaboration of truly talented people,” says Egg Films’ producer, Kerry Hosford. “We’re immensely grateful to have been able to work with a brave agency and client who allowed us to make work that stands out, at a time when so many brands in South Africa are playing it safe.”

Going into the night’s awards, Egg Films and its sister company, Arcade Content, had all seven of South Africa’s shortlists in the Entertainment and Entertainment for Music categories at Cannes Lions, as well as the only Media shortlist from South Africa. These converted into a Grand Prix, a Gold, two Silvers, and two Bronzes.

Sunu is only the sixth South African director ever to win Gold at Cannes Lions. – Source; www.
South African couple, Konrad and Yolande Giering, are part of an international ensemble in the “Wonderful World of Disney on Ice”. They’re excited to skate in front of local audiences for the first time.
South African husband and wife team, Konrad and Yolande Giering, are in the international ensemble skating in the Wonderful World of Disney on Ice, coming to the country this winter.

This is the first time the duo will show off their talents to a local audience, which will include their family and friends.

“I am excited,” Konrad told news website, IOL. “I have waited all my life to perform in South Africa, and now it’s finally arrived.”

Like many children, Konrad grew up watching Disney’s animated movies, which he loved.

One particular movie, The Lion King, resonated with the young Konrad because he could identify with the setting.

“As a South African, the movie really spoke to me,” he said. “I grew up around wildlife and so naturally I was fascinated by the characters and the storyline.”

Now, he gets to play Scar, the young sibling of King Mufasa. Bringing the character to life on ice, he said, was truly a dream come true.

Scar was a really cool character, Konrad said, and because he was evil, he got to be aggressive on the ice, which he enjoyed.

Yolande plays numerous Disney characters featured in the show.

After seeing Disney on Ice at Montecasino in Johannesburg a number of years ago, the pair decided to audition. They got the gig in 2009.

Yolande said it changed their lives. Not only did they get to skate together, but they also travelled the globe, representing the country as they went.

“It’s been a wonderful journey. We are about 40 skaters and 15 crew members that travel the world,” she said. “We have become one big family on tour. We work together, eat together, shop together. We do everything together.”

Classic Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy appear in the Wonderful World of Disney on Ice, alongside the new generation, including Simba, Timon and Pumbaa.

There will also be performances in Durban for the first time. The venues are:
  • Ticketpro Dome in Johannesburg, 30 June - 9 July
  • ICC Arena in Durban, 13 - 16 July
  • GrandWest Casino and Entertainment World in Cape Town, 19 - 23 July.

    Sources: IOL/

It won Best Storytelling at Shanghai International Film and TV Festival in China, then Best Animation at the World Banff Media Festival in Canada, and finished off with the Cristal for Best TV Production at Annecy in France, the world’s premier animation festival.

Produced by Magic Light Pictures, Revolting Rhymes was animated at Magic Light’s Berlin studio and Cape Town’s Triggerfish Animation. 

The film is an adaptation of Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake’s classic book of surprising fairytales.

The animation premiered on BBC One at Christmas 2016, opened the New York International Children’s Film Festival in February 2017, and won Best Animated Short at TIFF Kids in Toronto, Canada, last month.

This is the second year in a row that Triggerfish has worked on a project which has won at Shanghai, BANFF and Annecy, following the success of Stick Man, an adaptation of the Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler classic, also produced by Magic Light Pictures for the BBC.

Stick Man went on to win 11 international awards, including four at Kidscreen.

Triggerfish is currently animating an adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s The Highway Rat, their third BBC One Christmas collaboration with Magic Light Pictures. – Source:
Three of Distell’s premium brandies have won top honours at the New York International Spirits Competition.
Results of the annual New York International Spirits Competition were announced in June and Oude Meester and Van Ryn’s brandies flew the South African flag high as they were judged alongside more than 600 entries from 23 countries around the world.

Two premium brandies from the Stellenbosch-based Van Ryn’s Distillery won gold – the Van Ryn’s 12-year-old Distiller’s Reserve and the Van Ryn’s 20-year-old Collector’s Reserve. Another South African stalwart, the Oude Meester Souverein 18-year-old brandy, rounded off a trio of successful entrants which already have myriad other awards to their names.

This year’s judging panel consisted of a mix of restauranteurs, sommeliers, retail spirits buyers, distributors and importers.

Van Ryn’s is the world’s most awarded brandy distillery, having consistently produced award-winning brandies since 1845, including multiple titles of Best Worldwide Trophy at the International Wine and Spirit Competition and Best International Trophy Award Winner at the International Spirits Challenge.

“Oude Meester Souverein is the pinnacle of the Oude Meester range and symbolises the endless strive for faultless quality,” said Distell Brandy Ambassador, Nick Holdcroft.  “These brandies are clearly king of the hill and we hope these international awards will encourage more South Africans to taste and appreciate some of the world’s finest brandies made right here with locally-grown grapes.” – Source: www.sagoodnews
BET International on Saturday, 24 June, announced the winners of the 2017 international BET Awards categories. During the ceremony, South African icon Yvonne Chaka Chaka took home top honours at the BET International Awards presentation.
Eva Marcille returned to co-host the BET International Awards presentation for her second year in a row. She was joined on stage by South African actress Nomzamo Mbatha.

Beverly Bond was also in attendance to honour Yvonne Chaka Chaka and Ilwad Elman with the 2017 BET International Global Good Star and Power Awards, respectively, which recognise individuals championing endeavours to positively impact change and heighten awareness in different parts of the world. – Source:
Local TV star Pearl Thusi stole the show at this year's BET International Awards in Los Angeles.
Pearl Thusi hosted the Global Glitz and Glam on the red carpet alongside music manager and entrepreneur, Johnny Wright.

About being part of this year's event, Pearl said: "I'm so honoured to play a part in the 2017 BET Experience. It's my first time attending the BET Awards and it's been incredible." – Source:
Olympic champion, Wayde van Niekerk, set a new personal best at the 22nd edition of the International Athletics Meeting in Velenje, Slovenia, recently.
Van Niekerk stopped the clock with a 9.94 (+0.9) victory in the 100 m, clipping 0.04 from his previous career best.

"I've very pleased," said Van Niekerk, as quoted by the IAAF website.

"It's my best time and I'm glad the competition ended the way I wanted it to. This also bodes well for my two main distances."

Emile Erasmus and Henricho Bruintjies finished second and third in 10.12 and 10.14, respectively, to finish off a podium sweep for South Africa.

The 24-year-old Van Niekerk's dash was also an all-comers record in Slovenia, which elevated him to No 6 on the season's list.

Van Niekerk is already the only man to have broken the 10-second, 20-second and 44-second barriers in the 100, 200 and 400 m last year.

He has four meetings prior to the much anticipated London World Championships in August.

The 2017 World Championships will take place at London's Olympic Stadium from 4 to 13 August. – Source:
Rikenette Steenkamp was the star among several local athletes who participated the past week in France at a European athletics meeting.
The South African 100-m hurdles champion, Rikenette Steenkamp, had a good start to her international campaign the past week when she sprinted to victory at the Herrouville Saint-Clair Meeting in France.

The Tuks athlete was very consistent, winning both her heat and final in a time of 13.13s. The windy conditions made things difficult for the athletes. Karolina Koleczek (Poland) was second in 13.28s and Britain’s Yasmin Miller third in 13.44s.

Hassan Taftian (Iran) won the 100 m in 10.25s. Anaso Jobodwana was second in 10.28s, Thando Roto (Tuks) third in 10.29s and Emile Erasmus (Tuks) fourth in 10.37s.

Jobodwana raced to victory in his 200-m race, clocking 20.94s. The TuksSport High School matriculant, Clarence Munyai, finished second in the same race in a time of 20.98s. – Source:
South Africa ground out a 35-12 victory on Saturday, 24 June, to beat France at Ellis Park in Johannesburg for the first time and complete a 3-0 Test series whitewash.
Les Bleus, who won the four previous clashes with the Springboks at the ground, fell behind after six minutes and never looked likely to snap a losing streak on this tour.

Winning the first two matches of the series has reignited public support for the Springboks with a 55 820 crowd creating an electric atmosphere.

South Africa were skippered by lock Eben Etzebeth for the first time after the late withdrawal of No.8 Warren Whiteley due to a groin injury.

South Africa won the World Cup for the first time on the same date 22 years ago and one of the team, winger Chester Williams, was introduced to the crowd before the kick-off. – Source:
South African ultra-distance runner Ryan Sandes has won the 2017 Western States 100 Miler in California.
Set in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, the race takes in the trails in the area with runners climbing over 5 500 m and descending over 7 000 m during the gruelling run.

Sandes was able to overtake race favourite, Jim Walmsley, to win in a time of 16:19:39.

"This is a dream come true for me as Western States is the one race I have always dreamed of winning," said Sandes after the race.

"To share my experience with my family and good friends was even more special. It was a brutal day out, with thick snow in the early stages and then extremely high temps later. I don’t think I have ever been so shattered but at the same time so elated. Thank you to everyone for your support." – Source:
South Africa's Daryl Impey has been handed a starting spot on the Orica-Scott team for this year's Tour de France.
Impey, 32, will be taking part in his fifth Tour de France with an overall 38th finish last year his best placing to date.

Impey held the coveted yellow jersey in stages 6 and 7 in 2013 – the first South African to do so.

Impey's teammates in this year's race will be Esteban Chaves, Simon Yates, Mat Hayman, Michael Albasini, Roman Kreuziger, Damien Howson, Jens Keukeleire and Luke Durbridge.

The race starts on Saturday, 1 July, and ends on Sunday, 23 July. – Source:
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