Issue 284 | 13 July 2017
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President Jacob Zuma attended the Group of 20 (G20) Leaders' Summit, which took place from 7 to 8 July 2017 in Hamburg, Germany, under the theme "Shaping an Interconnected World".
On his arrival back in South Africa, President Zuma described the summit as successful, with positive outcomes to a large degree, as G20 leaders discussed and agreed on various developmental issues that would benefit the African continent. 
The German Presidency of the G20 managed to build on the achievements of the last summit in China, which emphasised sustainable development in Africa.

"Despite disagreements on certain issues, the summit managed to discuss and agree on various developmental matters that would be of advantage to South Africa and the African continent, including the launch of the G20 Africa Partnership. This programme was launched in recognition of the opportunities and challenges on the African continent as well as the goals of the United Nations Social Development Agenda 2030.

"It was agreed that this initiative would be based on equal partnerships and would be in line with the African Union Agenda 2063. The partnership will further serve our national interest as it will generate sustainable and inclusive economic growth and development, contribute to create decent employment and economic advancement for women and youth as well as alleviate poverty and inequality," the President said.

The partnership will include developmental projects such as the G20 Initiative for Rural Youth Employment in developing countries with a focus on Africa. This initiative is intended to contribute to creating 1,1 million new jobs by 2022 and provide innovative skills development programme for at least five million young people over the next five years.

The G20 Africa Partnership programme will also include projects such as the Women Entrepreneurs Financing Initiative, housed at the World Bank, and establishment of the Business Women's Leaders Task Force to work with the G20's Women20 and Business20 initiatives as well as the launch of the #eSkills4Girls Initiative to promote opportunities and equal participation for women and girls in the digital economy, in particular in low-income and developing countries. 

President Zuma said such developmental programmes were necessary to address the growing discontent by citizens, which was a bigger issue confronting the world.

"We are confronted by rising inequality within countries and a lack of quality jobs. It cannot be 'business as usual' where we simply take an approach to better explain the benefits of trade. It is imperative that the discourse and action acknowledge the benefits and costs of globalisation," the President said.

President Zuma said the summit also thoroughly discussed the issue of the global economy, trade and investment, against the unfavourable background of the slow global economic growth.

The summit agreed that despite improvements in trade and investment, the benefits of international trade and investment had not been shared fairly enough.

The leaders agreed that trade and investment were key pillars of growth and development, therefore it would be appropriate to promote a fair and favourable environment that would ensure transparency, mutually beneficial trade relations as well as inclusive and sustainable global growth.

"We further agreed on the improvement of the functions of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as well as full implementation of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement, which will provide technical assistance to developing countries.

"As South Africa, we will take full advantage of these agreements and opportunities to address immediate challenges facing the country such as economic growth, creation of decent jobs as well as eradication of poverty and inequality," President Zuma said. 

Among other issues discussed during the summit were sustainable development, climate and energy.

President Zuma said despite differences on climate and energy matters, including the decision of the United States to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, the majority of leaders remained committed to the agreement as it represented best opportunities to address the existential threat posed by climate change.

The President said the leaders reaffirmed their strong commitment to the Paris Agreement and agreed on full implementation of the agreement as well as the G20 Hamburg Climate and Energy Action Plan for Growth. 

During the summit, President Zuma also participated in the G20 Leaders Retreat Meeting, which discussed terrorism and extremism.

The President said South Africa noted with concern the alarming regularity and persistence of terror attacks across the world, causing death and devastation and impacting national and regional security.

"International coordination and cooperation in countering this threat is critical. As South Africa, we maintained our full support of the global campaign against terrorism within the framework of the United Nations," the President said.

President Zuma was accompanied by the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane; the Minister of Finance, Malusi Gigaba; and the Minister of Energy, Nkhensani Kubayi.

President Zuma also participated in the informal meeting of the BRICS Leaders Meeting, which was held on the margins of the G20 Summit, and chaired by the People's Republic of China, as the current chair of BRICS. South Africa assumes the chair next year.
President Zuma sends condolences to Ray Phiri's family
Raymond Chikapa Enock Phiri was a South African jazz, fusion and mbaqanga musician, born in present-day Mbombela, Mpumalanga.
President Jacob Zuma has extended his heartfelt condolences on the passing of late jazz musician, Raymond Phiri, who passed away on the morning of 12 July.

He became a founding member of the soul music giants group of the 1970s, the Cannibals, which were later joined by the late soul singer Mpharanyana.

When the Cannibals disbanded, he founded Stimela (Steam Train), with whom he conceived gold and platinum-winning albums like Fire, Passion and Ecstasy; Look, Listen and Decide; as well as the controversial People Don't Talk So Let's Talk.
The Presidency said Phiri was also honoured with the Order of Ikhamanga in Silver for his sterling contribution to the South African music industry and the successful use of arts as an instrument of social transformation.

National Orders are the highest awards that a country, through its President, bestows on its citizens and eminent foreign nationals.

"He was a musical giant. This is indeed a huge loss for South Africa and the music industry as a whole. We are with his family in thoughts and prayers during this trying period. May his soul rest in peace," President Zuma said. –Source:
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has, in his capacity as Special Envoy to the Republic of South Sudan, congratulated the Government and people of South Sudan on their celebration on 9 July 2017 of independence attained in 2011.
President Jacob Zuma has appointed Deputy President Ramaphosa as Special Envoy to assist in the reunification of the Sudan People's Liberation Movement and bring to an end to conflict that has affected Africa's newest state since 2013.

Deputy President Ramaphosa said South Sudan's national day presented an opportunity to the country's leadership and citizens to reflect on the unity and vision for a peaceful and prosperous South Sudan that led to the achievement of independence six years ago.

Deputy President Ramaphosa has commended President Salva Kiir and the people of South Sudan on the launch of the National Dialogue, which is aimed at uniting and reconciling the people of South Sudan following the devastating conflict they have experienced and continue to go through.

Deputy President Ramaphosa had the opportunity to meet the National Dialogue Steering Committee members in Johannesburg on 1 July 2017, on which occasion Deputy President Ramaphosa appreciated the strategic intention of the committee to ensure the inclusivity of the dialogue. Deputy President Ramaphosa assured the Steering Committee members of South Africa's support by sharing experiences from South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Deputy President has expressed the wish that the National Dialogue would yield positive outcomes.
South Africa has become the 19th country to sign an agreement establishing the Tripartite Free Trade Area (TFTA).
Signed on Friday, 7 July, the TFTA represents an integrated market of 26 countries with a combined population of 625 million people and a total gross domestic product of US$1,6 trillion.

South Africa signed the agreement in Kampala, Uganda, during the meeting of the Tripartite Sectoral Ministers' Committee.

The TFTA was launched by the heads of states in Sharm el-Shaik, Egypt, in June 2015 and South Africa did not sign the agreement at that stage since there was outstanding work in some of the annexures to the agreement.

"All the annexures have been completed and adopted by the Tripartite Sectoral Ministers Committee, enabling South Africa to sign the agreement.  South Africa is the 19th country to sign the agreement," said the Department of Trade and Industry.

The agreement will enter into force once 14 countries submit their instruments of ratification. Egypt recently became the first country to ratify the agreement.

Once the agreement enters into force, it will reduce the tariffs on goods traded between the tripartite countries and create new opportunities for exports as well as regional value chains.

Trade and Industry Minister, Rob Davies, who attended the Sectoral Ministers Committee Meeting, said the TFTA was an important initiative in accelerating regional integration efforts to ensure that African countries traded with each other.

South Africa, the Minister said, had been a champion of the tripartite process from the beginning and it had committed to the process.

Minister Davies said the country was pleased to be in a position to sign the agreement. He said while the outstanding annexures were being finalised, South Africa, as part of Southern African Customs Union (SACU), participated in the negotiations to finalise the bilateral tariffs commitments.

Tariff negotiations between SACU and the Eastern Africa Community (EAC) are very near to conclusion.

"The conclusion of these negotiations will be another important step forward in the process, since it will provide commercial benefits to our businesspeople by enabling them to trade products between SACU and EAC countries at a reduced or zero tariff," said Minister Davies.

The meeting was attended by trade ministers and officials from the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, and the Southern African Development Community. – Source:
The South African Government has taken note of the ruling on 6 July 2017, by the Pre-Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) relating to the travel by the Sudanese President, Omar al-Bashir, to the African Union Summit, hosted in South Africa in June 2015.


The Government notes in particular that the ICC has decided not to refer the matter to the Assembly of State Parties and the United Nations Security Council.

The Government will study the ruling and its implications and seek legal opinion on available options. In the meantime, South Africa reiterates its total commitment to the principles of international justice.

South Africa recently joined the space programme of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) nations in the first substantive project in space cooperation between the member countries.
A statement from the South African National Space Agency (Sansa) said the country joined the Brazilian Space Agency (AEB), the State Space Corporation "Roscosmos" (Roscosmos) in Russia, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the China National Space Administration (CNSA) to create the BRICS Remote Sensing Satellite Constellation.

The Remote Sensing Satellite Constellation will create a system for the sharing of remote sensing data, meaning the data from each of the member countries' existing Earth observation satellites will be made available to all the other members.

Sansa said a joint committee meeting was held in Haikou, China, recently to review and deliberate on the progress of the Remote Sensing Satellite Constellation and to discuss a draft agreement to be signed later this year.

Sansa spokesperson, Vaneshree Maharaj, said: "The BRICS Remote Sensing Satellite Virtual Constellation is a practical step towards high-tech cooperation between these countries that will assist in attaining the sustainable development goals and challenges pertaining to our respective economies and societies".

"There are two phases proposed for the BRICS Remote Sensing Satellite Constellation: phase one, comprising a virtual constellation of existing satellites; and phase two, a new satellite constellation," Maharaj said.

Sansa said phase two also provided the BRICS partners with the opportunity for space solutions that could meet the challenges faced by humanity, such as global climate change, major natural and technological disasters and environmental protection.

"We remain committed to ensuring the integration of African space-based knowledge and technology in improving the lives of fellow Africans and welcome such esteemed partners in achieving this important objective," said Sansa CEO, Valanathan Munsami. – Source: African News Agency
The Minister of Tourism, Tokozile Xasa, together with the Minister of Communications, Ayanda Dlodlo, are attending the 46th Annual Rainbow PUSH Coalition (RPC) and Citizenship Education Fund International Convention in Chicago, US, under the theme, "Protecting, Defending and Gaining – A More Perfect Union".
The convention is taking place from 12 to 14 July 2017. Minister Xasa is promoting and exposing tourism holistically to the US stakeholders during the convention.

Founded by Reverend Jesse Jackson Senior, the RPC was formed in December 1996, through the merging of two organisations, the People United to Serve Humanity (PUSH) and the Rainbow Coalition, and is a multiracial and multi-issue organisation fighting for social change.

During the convention, Minister Xasa is also engaging in the South African Tourism roundtable discussions with various key stakeholders in the tourism industry in Chicago and Miami. These roundtables will focus on the role of communication and tourism in the Developmental Agenda of South Africa and how social cohesion through tourism can be attained.

Minister Xasa is sharing information on tourism in South Africa and promoting South Africa as must-visit destination for American tourists, be they business, educational, cultural, heritage or leisure tourists.
Eskom has signed a US$1,5-billion loan agreement with the China Development Bank.
The approximately R19,6-billion facility will form part of the financing of the Medupi power plant in Limpopo.

"We are pleased to see the continuation of the journey of cooperation that we started with our Chinese partners last year. The conclusion of this second loan agreement continues to demonstrate financial markets' confidence in Eskom and South Africa, notwithstanding the challenging market conditions," Eskom's Interim Group Chief Executive, Johnny Dladla, said.

Speaking at the signing ceremony held at Eskom's offices in Megawatt Park, Sunninghill, Dladla said the utility was confident that the agreement would cement the relationship between the two utilities.

"This loan will also aide us in ensuring that we complete the Medupi project and ensure security of energy supply," he said.

Eskom's Chief Financial Officer, Anoj Singh, said the loan fulfilled Eskom's intent to diversify Eskom's funding sources.

"To date, Eskom has secured 77% of this fiscal year's funding requirement (including cash on hand), and we remain resolute that we will fully execute the required funding for the year. We are confident that our liquidity levels and financial profile will continue to improve and stabilise," said Singh. – Source: 
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen is the latest in a flurry of well-known United States fast-food chains to test the South African market.
The seller of fried chicken will open the first of three South African outlets in Sandton on 13 July. Siyaghopa Trading Group, a closely held investment vehicle that was awarded the Popeyes licence by Canadian parent, Restaurant Brands International, is buying up land to support a future roll-out at a yet-to-be determined date, according to CEO Jaye Sinclair.

"There's no urgency", Sinclair said in an interview at Bloomberg's Johannesburg office recently. "We can start creating a land bank for when things start to turn around and we can accelerate."

Competing with the Yum! Brands chain will be a "long process," Sinclair said, though he's confident that word will spread quickly once South Africans taste the Popeyes range. The company is seeking to replicate the early popularity of Burger King, Dunkin' Donuts, Pizza Hut and Starbucks, all of which have opened their first South African stores since 2013. – Source:
Austrian Airlines says it will be bring back its direct route between Cape Town and Vienna expanding its long-haul portfolio in 2018.

Expansions include a twice-a-week to Cape Town in South Africa as of the winter of 2018/19. The airline also announced new flight additions to Tokyo.

As of 27 October 2018, it will offer twice-weekly flights, operating a Boeing 777 for both flights.

"Cape Town represents an expansion of our offering to long-haul tourist destinations in the winter," says Austrian Airlines CCO, Andreas Otto.

In addition to Economy and Business Class, passengers will also already be able to fly in Premium Economy to the new destinations – with flights bookable as of September 2017. – Source:

Along with adding a third date to the Joburg leg of his Sout African tour, local comedian Trevor Noah will also be performing in Durban.

Local fans now have four opportunities to see the star in the country. Here is everything you need to know about the shows, including dates, ticket information and venues.

Event information for Trevor Noah's Joburg shows:

  • Date: Wednesday, 09 August.
  • Date: Thursday, 10 August.
  • Date: Friday, 11 August.
  • The venue for all three is The Ticketpro Dome.
  • Ticket Price: R450 – R1 400. Tickets available at Ticketpro.

Event information for Trevor Noah's Durban show:  

  • Date: Sunday, 13 August.
  • Venue: The ICC Durban.
  • Ticket Price: R350 – R1 100 Tickets available at Computicket.

Terry Pheto has added yet another accolade to her list of achievements.
The actress has been nominated for a Black Reel Award for her role as Winnie Mandela in the BET drama, Madiba.

Terry received high praise internationally for her role in Madiba in which she stars alongside Laurence Fishburne.

She will go up against Sanaa Lathan, Loretta Devine, Oprah Winfrey and Nia Long in the Outstanding Actress, TV Movie/Limited Series Category.

Of the news, Terry expressed her thanks and honour at the nomination.

In an interview with City Press earlier this year, Terry revealed that it was her dream role.

"I think when you have a dream, it scares you sometimes. This is my dream role. It's a role I've always wanted to portray." – Source:
Drones have grown in popularity over the past two years and are being used quite prolifically across South Africa – albeit under heavy regulation.
However, the talent and creativity are coming to the fore more than ever before as can be seen in the annual Dronestagram contest.

The competition, judged by an elite group of organisations such as National Geographic deputy director Patrick Witty, photo editor Jeff Heimsath and Emanuel Ascoli, who is the editor of National Geographic France and Dronestagram, honours international winners and talent in the drone photography sphere with entries considered from all over the world from both amateur and professional drone photographers.

The fourth annual international drone photography contest was held this year and local photographer, Luke Maximo Bell, has been chosen as a first prize winner in the category of creativity.

The international contest consists of four categories, including nature, people and urban.

Bell is no stranger to the drone photography scene and is well-known locally for his photographic talent. The local Capetonian has taken the drone photography world by storm with his winning image that was taken as he is an avid adventurer, evident from his Instagram feed.

The competition has been running since 2014 and this is the first time a South African "dronographer" has been chosen as a winner. This year, the category of creativity was special as it has not been used in the previous years and was awarded to applicants with talented creativity in their work, according to the organisers. – Source:
Record-breaking long-distance swimmer Sarah Ferguson, who has swum some of the country's fiercest ocean passages, has set her sights on the Ka'iwi channel between the Hawaiian islands as her next challenge, all the while drawing attention to the detrimental impact of ocean pollution.
South African open-ocean endurance swimmer Sarah Ferguson is swimming the mighty Ka'iwi channel in Hawaii for a worthy cause: ocean conservation.

The former competitive pool swimmer, turned endurance open-ocean swimmer, is hoping to become the first African woman to conquer the mighty 42k-m Ka'iwi passage, known as the Valley of Bones, at the end of July 2017. Ferguson is already a seasoned endurance swimmer, having swum all the major South African open-ocean challenges, including the Robben Island swim and the popular Umhlanga to Durban race.

In Hawaii, Ferguson will not only face the Valley's ferocious waves and unpredictable currents, but will also have to be wary of the area's unique but dangerous ocean wildlife, including various species of sharks, jellies and the illusive but deadly Portuguese Man-of-War bluebottle.

Ferguson writes on her official blog, the swim is not to be taken lightly, and she has done as much preparation as possible to complete it, including open swims around the Western Cape and the KwaZulu-Natal coast.

To counter the extreme heat of the northern summer, Ferguson will swim most of the channel at night, with an able back-up team alongside her all the way.

In her introduction on her fundraising page on the GoFundMe website, Ferguson writes: "The main objective of this swim and all my preparatory swims is to create awareness of the dire need for ocean conservation as well as to educate rural communities on the importance of conservation and development."

Partnering with various South African and North American conservation groups, including her own Breath Ocean Conservation team, the I Am Water Trust and Hawaiian community group, Deep & Beyond, her trip will not only include the epic swim, but also a series of educational workshops with communities, especially young people, encouraging them to make the necessary changes in humans' relationship with the ocean in order to protect the planet as a whole. – Source:
Van Niekerk is on fire this season, having run personal bests in the 100 m (9.94) and 200 m (19.84) last month, and setting a new world best time of 30.81 in the rarely-run 300 m in Ostrava recently.
World record-holder Wayde van Niekerk stormed to victory in the 400 m at the Diamond League meeting in Lausanne recently, as American veteran Justin Gatlin went sub-10 seconds in the 100 m.

That time beat a long-time record held by Michael Johnson, the legendary United States athlete whose record in the one-lap race he also beat when winning gold in Rio.

The 24-year-old timed a world lead of 43.62 in Lausanne, well ahead of second-placed Botswana's Baboloki Thebe.

Van Niekerk has only run the 400 m faster on two occasions: when he won his world title in Beijing in 2015; the other was a year later when he won Olympic gold.

Hailed by eight-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt as his successor as leader of the sprinting world, with the Jamaican legend due to retire after the world championships in London in August, Van Niekerk said he was constantly inspired by his performances.

"I didn't come with a specific time in mind but I am pleased with this result," he said.

"I do have a love-hate relationship with the 400 m, but I always try to approach it with a positive mindset, not setting myself any limits.

"And the performances keep me going along, which keeps me passionate about what I do." – Source:
South African granny Deirdre Larkin – who happens to be 85 – is making headlines around the world with her running achievements.
The inspiring granny – who's become a bit of a legend in Johannesburg – holds the over-80 World Half Marathon record and reportedly has over 500 medals to her name.

And all this since 2009! Deidre took up long-distance running after she was diagnosed with osteoporosis and found that nothing else helped … and she refused to watch her body deteriorate!

Deirdre's amazing feats are inspiring people around the world – happy to see that age is just a number. "You make your own barriers," says Deirdre, who exercises in her room before running in the mornings.

The Joburg granny broke her own world record in May when she ran the Geneva Marathon in 2:05:13, cutting seven minutes off her previous record!

When Deirdre isn't running, the retired concert pianist is teaching (and inspiring) students.

Her running club – Randburg Harriers – has awarded her an Honorary Life Membership. On its website, the club says: "Since joining Randburg Harriers, this quietly-spoken, unassuming lady has regularly responded to calls for assistance at our own events, and she has marshalled at several of our road races.

"Deirdre Larkin embodies everything that is good about our sport, and about life itself, and Randburg Harriers is immensely proud to call her one of our own." – Source:
A number of South African athletes delivered impressive performances on the European circuit over the past weekend.
Wenda Nel was in fine form on Sunday, 9 July, taking third position in the 400-m women hurdles race at the IAAF Diamond League Meeting in London, England.

The African champion completed the contest in 54.73, dipping under 55 seconds for the third time this year, with Janieve Russell of Jamaica securing victory in 54.02.

Carina Horn won the 100-m women sprint in 11.05 at the European Classic Permit Meeting in Sotteville, France, clocking the fastest time of her career, though the South African record holder was aided by a +2.6m/s wind.

Zarck Visser again sailed over the eight metre mark, winning the long jump men with a leap of 8.07m.

In Kortrijk, Belgium, on Saturday, 8 July, Justin Palframan won the 200-m women race in a personal best of 22.84 and also secured victory in the 400-m event in 52.47. Showing consistent form, the World Student Games one-lap champion had clocked a 400-m season best of 52.30 in Celle Ligure three days earlier.

The next day, Palframan went on to win the 200-m race at the Brussels Grand Prix in 23.07.

Lebakeng Sesele was triumphant in the 200-m men race in Kortrijk, achieving a personal best of 20.27 seconds, becoming the sixth athlete to dip under the ASA A-standard qualifying time in the half-lap dash for the IAAF World Championships in London next month.

He also finished second in the 100-m men race in 10.20, with the benefit of a +3.2m/s wind.

Gena Lofstrand continued her breakthrough international campaign, setting another personal best to win the 800-m women race in 2:02.05, edging out Winnie Nanyondo of Uganda by 0.01 in a late sprint.

In other events at the Brussels Grand Prix, junior athlete George Kusche won the 800-m men race in 1:47.98, while Jerry Motsau clocked 3:38.11 to finish fourth in the 1 500-m men contest, achieving his fastest time in nearly three years.

Making his comeback from an anti-doping ban, Victor Hogan won the discus throw men with a 62.69m heave to secure victory by more than 12 metres. – Source:
Jordy Smith recently won the 2017 Ballito Pro, presented by Billabong, in South Africa. Jordy beat Brazilian Willian Cardoso in the finals, to claim his second Ballito Pro win … while fellow South African Mikey February, from Cape Town, clinched third position.
Durban surf sensation, Jordy Smith, claimed his victory in front of an ecstatic large local crowd who gathered at Willard beach in KwaZulu-Natal.

Jordy said afterwards: "Just to be here in front of my friends and family and such an awesome crowd is amazing, big thanks to everyone who came down to the beach."

He also gave a "massive congratulations" to Mikey whom he knocked out in the semi-finals.

"I'm super pumped for him and I hope he can qualify this year," said Jordy.

The Ballito Pro is the first World Surf League QS10,000 rated event of the year.

Next up for Jordy is the J-Bay Open in Jeffrey's Bay in the Eastern Cape (12-23 July) … which Jordy has won twice before – in 2010 and 2011.

"I'm really happy with my performance this week," said Jordy, "and hopefully I can take this momentum to J-Bay."

The J-Bay Open runs from 12 to 23 July 2017 and features many international competitors. – Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Jacoline Schoonees
Design and layout: Gladwin Komane


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