Issue 293 |14 September 2017
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The meeting of the High-Level Committee formed part of efforts towards finding a lasting solution to the prevailing conflict in Libya.
President Jacob Zuma undertook a Working Visit to Brazzaville, Republic of Congo, on 9 September to participate in the meeting of the African Union (AU) High-Level Committee Meeting on Libya.

The High-Level Committee was chaired by Congolese President, Denis Sassou N'Guesso, and included the heads of state and government of Algeria, Egypt, Mauritania, Uganda and South Africa.

As a member of the High-Level Committee on Libya, South Africa supported all efforts of the AU aimed at bringing about a peaceful resolution to the Libyan crisis.

President Zuma has commended the progress registered in the discussions in the Republic of Congo towards the resolution of conflict in Libya.

The meeting considered reports by the United Nations Special Representative, League of the Arab States, the European Union and of the AU High-Level Representative, former President of Tanzania, Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete.

The High-Level Committee also adopted a road map outlining the activities and time frames for actions towards the resolution of conflict, including an enlarged Fifth Meeting of the High-Level Committee, the organisation of the Inclusive Inter-Libyan Dialogue, the meeting of the High-Level Committee before the AU Summit in January next year as well as the installation of the Institutions of the Transition.

President Zuma congratulated President Sassou N'Guesso on successfully bringing together all the critical warring factions in the Libyan conflict and noted their stronger convergence on the steps that needed to be taken in order to resolve the conflict and bring about peace, democracy and stability in Libya.

"It was the first time that all the opposing players in the conflict came together under one roof in this fashion and I would like to therefore congratulate President Sassou N'Guesso for convening this meeting successfully," said President Zuma.

"South Africa remains ready to assist Libya in post-reconstruction and development efforts and to share our country's experiences in reconciliation, constitution-building and the democratic transformation of the State.

"Furthermore, South Africa reiterates the importance of a coordinated and harmonised international engagement in Libya."
The category 5 Hurricane Irma was the largest and most devastating in years, resulting in flooding and storm surges that occurred between 6 and 11 September 2017.  The unprecedented floods have killed dozens and destroyed infrastructure in the Caribbean, displacing many citizens from their homes.
On behalf of the Government and the people of South Africa, President Jacob Zuma has conveyed a message of condolences to the governments and people of the countries of the Caribbean that have been affected by Hurricane Irma, especially families and relatives of all the victims.

President Zuma said: “South Africa enjoys cordial relations with the countries and peoples of the Caribbean and joins the international community in expressing our deepest empathy and solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Antigua and Barbuda, St Kitts and Nevis, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Cuba and the Bahamas. On behalf of the Government and people of South Africa, I wish to send my condolences to the governments of the respective countries, particularly the families and relatives of those affected by the tragedy”.
On behalf of the Government and the people of South Africa, President Jacob Zuma has conveyed a message of condolences to the Government and people of the Republic of Niger, especially families and relatives of all the victims, following the torrential rains that killed many and forced thousands to leave their homes.
The heavy downpours that occurred around the end of August 2017 have killed dozens and destroyed hundreds of houses mainly outside the capital, Niamey. Flooding is a recurrent problem in Niger, but this year more than 40 people have lost their lives.

"On behalf of the Government and people of South Africa, I wish to send my deepest condolences to the Government of the Republic of Niger, particularly the families and relatives affected by the tragedy and further wish the injured a speedy recovery."
The Government of the Republic of South Africa expresses its deep concern about the plight of over 300 000 Rohingya civilians who have fled their homes in Myanmar.
South Africa further supports the statement of the Secretary-General of the United Nations who emphasised the responsibility of the Government of Myanmar to provide security to affected populations, and requested for humanitarian agencies to be granted access to affected communities in need of assistance and protection.

The South African Government urges all parties to halt the violence in order to avoid further human suffering. In particular, the South African Government appeals to the Government of Myanmar to address the current situation in Rakhine state within the ambit of the law, upholding the rights of all those living within its borders.

The South African Government is mindful of the manifold challenges confronting the Government and the people of Myanmar and has full faith that the Government of Myanmar will continue its process of democratisation and political reform in order to deliver sustainable development and stability and to contribute to national reconciliation.
The NDP is South Africa's all-encompassing long-term plan and was adopted by all parties represented in the National Assembly and all sectors of the society in 2012.
President Jacob Zuma led the fifth anniversary celebrations of the adoption of the South Africa's socio-economic blueprint, the NDP, under the theme "NDP 2030, One Plan, One Country, Together we Move South Africa Forward" in Cape Town on 12 September.

The objective of the NDP is to create a better and more prosperous South Africa by 2030. Its core priorities are to eradicate poverty and reduce inequality and unemployment drastically by 2030.

President Zuma said government was pleased that the NDP had yielded some significant results in the development of the country despite the remaining challenges such as poverty and unemployment.

"State institutions in all spheres of government continue to align their long-term plans with the NDP and identify areas where policy change is required to ensure consistency and coherence. The vision of the NDP presented in 2011 was a process of charting a new path for our country. The plan comprises simultaneous actions in key strategic areas at a scale large enough to constitute a 'big push' to ignite inclusive economic growth and create jobs.

"In realising the objectives of the NDP, we call on South Africans from all sectors of the society to work together with government in implementing the strategic programmes of the plan in order to build a prosperous, peaceful, safe and united South Africa. Let's work together as a nation to implement this plan to undo the inheritances of apartheid and address the long-standing triple challenge of unemployment, poverty and inequality to achieve a radically socio-economic transformation."

The NDP is divided into 13 chapters that address the most pressing challenges facing South Africa and provide solutions to these challenges in the form of proposals and actions. The plan outlines sector-specific goals and a vision for South Africa to be achieved by the year 2030.
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says government's Nine-Point Plan has been stimulating economic activity since the intervention was announced by President Jacob Zuma three years ago.

The Deputy President was answering questions in the National Assembly recently.

"In 2015, President Zuma announced the reprioritisation of government interventions to support economic growth through the Nine-Point Plan.

"In 2017, our implementation of the Nine-Point Plan continues and it continues to create a better life and indeed a better economy for our country," he said.

Listing some of the results from the intervention, the Deputy President said in the course of revitalising the agriculture and agro-processing value chain, net exports of agricultural raw products had gone up by an average by 14,6% since 2012.

He said 23 agri-parks were currently being developed and would be completed by 2019.

"Through the implementation of the Industrial Policy Action Plan, four industrial parks have been launched in South Africa.

"We continue to see expansion in the auto sectors of our economy with auto-making companies investing billions and billions of rands.

"In May this year, Beijing AutoWorks, together with the Industrial Development Corporation, launched the expansion of the New Era Facility in Springs, Gauteng.

"The investment into this expansion is estimated at R250 million and will create 100 new jobs," he said.

He said the MAN manufacturing and assembly plant in Olifantsfontein, Gauteng, was now producing buses for Tshwane's Bus Rapid Transit services with 80% local content.

"First Auto Works invested R600 million in a truck assembly facility at Coega in the Eastern Cape," he said.

The Deputy President said as part of the intervention of the Nine-Point Plan, several sectors were showing signs of growth.

The clothing and textile industry's turnaround has resulted in 70 000 jobs being saved with an estimated 9 550 jobs created and 28 new companies being established.

"The Black Industrialist Programme has supported 46 projects and has attracted R3,7 billion of private-sector investment and this has created almost 20 000 jobs.

"To support localisation, 21 products and sectors have been designated for local production. These include products such as bus bodies, clothing, textile, leather, footwear, school furniture, office furniture, steel power pylons and canned or processed vegetables," he said.

Government's interventions to support investment and growth through the Nine-Point Plan includes unlocking the potential of small, medium and micro-enterprises, co-ops and rural and township enterprises by implementing the 30% set aside policy that was adopted by government. – Source:

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, has successfully concluded her Working Visit to Hanoi, in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, where she met the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Phạm Bình Minh.
The Vietnamese Foreign Affairs Minister last undertook a Working Visit to South Africa during August 2013.

South Africa and Vietnam share strong historical bonds, which date back from the years of the struggle against apartheid. "It is a relationship that is based on solidarity, with solid bonds of friendship binding our two nations since the Bandung Conference in 1955," said Minister Nkoana-Mashabane. Formal diplomatic relations between South Africa and Vietnam were established on 22 December 1993.

Minister Nkoana-Mashabane and Minister Pham Binh discussed various ways of strengthening bilateral relations, including through expanding trade and investment between the two countries. They agreed on concluding pending agreements and memoranda of understanding to expand the formal framework of cooperation.

Currently, South Africa's main exports to Vietnam include live animals, vegetables, mineral products, iron and steel products, plastics and rubber. South Africa's top imports from Vietnam include machinery, footwear, textiles, vegetables, mineral products, toys and sports apparel.

The ministers also noted that trade between the two countries had grown from R18,4 billion in 2015 to R20,5 billion in 2016, making Vietnam South Africa's second-largest trading partner in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations region.

During the meeting, South Africa extended its appreciation to the role Vietnam was playing in contributing to skills development in South Africa through scholarships offered by the Government of Vietnam to South African students in Maritime Economy at the Maritime University in Hanoi.

The two delegations agreed to explore possibilities of sponsoring more students, not only in Maritime Studies, but also in Shipbuilding and Aquaculture, considering that Vietnam had expertise in both areas. The two countries will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic relations in 2018. In celebrating this milestone, the two ministers agreed to work together to advance the developmental agenda of the Global South.
This year's seminar coincided with the commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the 1977 Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions of 1949.
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) co-hosted a successful 17th edition of the Annul Regional Seminar on International Humanitarian Law (IHL) from 5 to 8 September 2017 at the OR Tambo Building, Pretoria.

The Annual Regional Seminar, which took place under the theme: “The 1977 Additional Protocols: 40 Years After”, was attended by 21 countries from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region and the Indian Ocean Islands, namely: Angola, Botswana, Mauritius, Mozambique, Comoros, Seychelles, Namibia, Lesotho, Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Swaziland, and Zambia. Nigeria, Ethiopian and Tanzania also attended as special guest countries. The Pan-African Parliament, SADC Parliamentary Forum and the African Union Commission were also represented.

The Deputy Minister of DIRCO, Luwellyn Landers, delivered a keynote address wherein he stated that “modern warfare has presented new challenges to IHL with the involvement of non-state actors with a similar military power as states". The Deputy Minister concluded his address by commending and applauding the role played by African states in the recent historic adoption of the United Nations (UN) Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons by the UN General Assembly because of their catastrophic humanitarian consequences. He also acknowledged that this milestone development would set an international norm against nuclear weapons and would complement other relevant instruments such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation, the various nuclear-weapon-free-zone treaties, such as the Pelindaba Treaty, and the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty.

The Annual Regional Seminar, which was very instructive, produced an outcome document based on the following:
  • it reaffirmed the role of National Committees on IHL and national IHL focal points in the implementation and IHL
  • continued commitment to and respect for the 1977 Protocols Additional to the 1949 Geneva Conventions
  • accession/ratification and domestication of the 2009 African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa (“Kampala Convention”)
  • accession/ratification and domestication of the 2013 Arms Trade Treaty
  • strengthened collaboration between National IHL Committees and national IHL focal points with National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, particularly in the area of dissemination of IHL
  • full utilisation of relevant stakeholders, in particular the media, academic circles, religious and traditional leaders, to promote humanitarian law and customs of war
  • strengthened engagement with parliamentarians throughout the process of implementation of IHL treaties, including regional parliamentary bodies, as well as with other new and relevant stakeholders, including judiciaries and lawyers’ associations
  • continued engagement on mechanisms to strengthen compliance with IHL through ongoing global processes (Resolution 2 of the 32nd International Conference of the Red Cross Red Crescent), including through promotion and enhancing of regional fora such as the annual Regional IHL Seminar
  • continued use of reporting as a means of sharing progress and innovations, including through country reporting at the annual Regional IHL Seminar
  • submission of reports as required under various IHL-related instruments
  • placing emphasis on sharing of experiences within SADC as well as across regions on the continent, including with the Economic Community of West African States.
On 6 September 2017, Stephen McGown, accompanied by his father, Malcom McGown, attended a meeting at the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) at the invitation of the Consular Incident Command Centre (CICC).
Present at the meeting were officials from the Department of State Security, the South African Police Service and DIRCO.

The purpose of the meeting was to introduce the McGowan family to the interdepartmental members of the CICC, who provided consular assistance to the family and facilitated Stephen McGowan’s rescue efforts.

Consular Services set up the CICC immediately after DIRCO was alerted of Stephen McGowan’s kidnapping by Al-Qaeda militants in Timbuktu, Mali, in November 2011, while he was on holiday.

Following an interactive discussion, Stephen and his father thanked the CICC team for the assistance provided over the last six years, which finally led to Stephen’s release in August 2017.
"South Africa currently is the Chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), so as we speak, we have people on the ground as a region, who are picking up information as to what exactly happened."
The Minister of Defence, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, recently said the South African Government would conduct a fact-finding mission in Lesotho following the assassination of Lesotho Defence Force Chief, Lieutenant General Khoantle Motsomotso.

The Lesotho Defence Force Chief was recently shot dead reportedly by an army officer in an incident that sparked fears of a possible coup in the Mountain Kingdom.

 After the news of the assassination broke, President Jacob Zuma condemned the senseless killing of General Motsomotso.

He said the incident was regrettable, especially because his assassination took place two years after the killing of former Lesotho Defence Force Commander, Brigadier Maaparankoe Mohao, in June 2015.

The Minister said the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) had established various bilateral operations liaison fora with countries with which South Africa shares land borders to address common matters and collaborations on cross-border patrols.

She said South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Swaziland were working together and meeting on a quarterly basis.

"As part of this work, the SANDF has also exchanged communications systems with each one of these partners to ensure improved monitoring and communications. More work is ongoing to establish similar structures with the remaining countries in the neighbourhood.

"… We have very sound and positive relations with all our neighbouring countries as part of the SADC region … There is commitment of ensuring that there is peace, security and stability within our region," the Minister said. – Source:
Improved infrastructure could help address the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region's socio-economic issues, ensure better quality of life, boost regional economic integration, bridge the inequality gap and aid industrialisation efforts.

"Through greater access to information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure, applications and services, more of our citizens can be integrated in social, political and economic activities," said the Minister of Communications, Ayanda Dlodlo, recently.

She was speaking during a panel session on the Fourth Industrial Revolution at the SADC ICT Ministers' Meeting in KwaZulu-Natal.

The overarching objective of the meeting was to establish communications systems that were accessible, affordable, efficient, reliable and fully integrated to ensure connectivity for the citizens of the SADC region.

The Minister said most SADC citizens were still denied access to information. Of SADC's population of 300 million people, only 16,3% of the population were using the Internet, compared to a penetration of 47% globally.

"We must establish communications systems that are accessible, affordable, efficient and reliable, that move at a pace faster than the evolution of technology and are of high quality. These systems must be fully integrated to meet the diverse requirements and ensure connectivity for the citizens of the SADC region," Minister Dlodlo said.

The ICT infrastructure must also allow more people to access the huge variety of information, services and technologies offered by business, government and local communities.

Minister Dlodlo noted that despite the slow progress, there had been some inroads in the sector. These included "Internet for all" initiatives, which aimed to connect all unconnected SADC citizens; broadcast digital migration, which was helping to free up additional bandwidth; the Smart Africa Initiative, which used technology to address development challenges; the African Internet Exchange System, which aimed to build a strong Internet connectivity in Africa; and ITU Connect 2020 to allow for affordable and universal broadband access in the SADC region.

The challenge the Minister noted was the high cost of data, especially in South Africa, which she said drove up the cost of communications and restricted access, particularly for young people who used mobile applications to stay in touch, and access services and information.

As such, the Minister said, government was probing the high cost of mobile data through the competition authorities.

"We are doing so because we see wireless communication as a critical factor in driving the economy forward. We also recognise that data will be a driver of many of the innovations that we have seen in the 21st century onwards." – Source:

The completion of electricity transmission infrastructure would create a more competitive market for members of the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP), the Minister of Energy, Mmamoloko Kubayi, said recently.
Speaking at the opening of the 49th SAPP conference of meetings in Tshwane, the Minister said South Africa's surplus electricity would be made available to the regional power pool, however, the issue of inadequate transmission infrastructure remained a hindrance.

"This capacity will be made available to the regional power pool so that member countries can utilise this capacity as their demand increases. We are aware that one of the constraints to the regional electricity trade is inadequate transmission infrastructure. It's important for this reason that the projects underway be completed as speedily as possible," Minister Kubayi told delegates attending the conference, hosted by power utility Eskom.

The SAPP, which has 12 member countries represented by their respective electricity power utilities organised through the Southern African Development Community, coordinates the planning and operation of the electricity power system among member utilities.

The power pool provides a forum for regional solutions to electricity energy problems.

Some of the projects include the Zizabona interconnect project, which will link Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana and Namibia as well as the establishment of the Namibia- Angola interconnector project.

"The completion of these projects will help create a more competitive market that will bring several advantages," the Minister said.

"A more competitive market will attract more investment, we want to see our economies growing. We need to work together," said the Minister, adding that Eskom had moved into an era of energy surplus and would make the surplus available to the region.

"As South Africa, we stand ready to provide resources at our disposal to ensure that all our regional partners are able to bring development to their countries and their people." – Source:
President Jacob Zuma says the launch of the Invest SA One Stop Shop in the Western Cape will make doing business easier and in the process, attract more investment to the country.
The President said the launch of the centre, where investors could access a variety of services from government departments and agencies such as the South African Revenue Service under one roof, was an indication of how all three spheres of government could collaborate to cut red tape.

President Zuma officially launched the One Stop Shop at the Southern Sun Cape Sun Hotel in Cape Town on Friday, 8 September.

"We need to work together as government, business and organised labour to ensure that we sustain this positive trajectory.

"The economy must come first for all of us … We are establishing the One Stop Shops to make it easier for investors to do business in South Africa," he said. 

The launch of the Invest SA Western Cape comes after the launch of the national centre, which is located in Pretoria.

The Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Bulelani Magwanishe, said since the launch of the national Invest SA centre in the first quarter of this year, 101 walk-ins had been recorded at the centre and 277 investor consultations were done. Four investor blockages were identified and escalated to the relevant departments and they were later resolved. Source: –
A 20-member South African business delegation are showcasing their products and services at the 2017 World Food Moscow International Food Exhibition in Russia from 11 to 14 September 2017.
The participation of the South African companies in the exhibition is funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) through its Export Marketing and Investment Assistance scheme with the aim of increasing exports of South African manufactured products to Russia. The objective of the scheme is to nurture export markets for South African products and services and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.

The Managing Director of Thandi Wines, Vernon Henn, said his company was on a mission to explore opportunities in Russia and beyond since the exhibition attracted international clients from diverse markets.

"The World Food Moscow International Food Exhibition will present us with opportunities whereby we will be in a position to acquire distributors for our wines and form partnerships that will allow our company to obtain new business and infiltrate new markets," says Henn.

The Managing Director of the Mpumalanga-based JAB Dried Fruit Products, Corne Barnard, said he was optimistic that his products were destined to make a positive impact at the exhibition.

"We are ideally looking at having our products marketed to Russian retailers and wholesalers and are looking at exporting one container per week to the country and use this platform as a stepping stone towards our goal," said Barnard.

According to the Minister of Trade and Industry, Rob Davies, the objective of South Africa's participation in the exhibition is to promote South Africa's agro-processing industry in order to consolidate and establish the market presence of South Africa in Russia. He added that this would also generate greater returns for the South African agro-processing and related industries at the show and within the Russian market in alignment to the dti's Market Diversification Strategy.
The Minister of Human Settlements, Lindiwe Sisulu, together with the Slum Dwellers International (SDI), recently launched the Digital Impact Tour Africa in Langa, Cape Town.
The objective of the Digital Impact Tour, which has been undertaken in several cities around the world like Brussels, London and New York, is to explore the implications of the digital age for global civil society and apply the knowledge to use digital resources safely, ethically and effectively.

The process involves community-driven data collection in collaborative planning in which the poor are partners in urban planning and upgrading.

"We want to promote the culture of communities being involved in the planning and development of their settlements, and starting with the data collection owned and provided by the communities themselves, is a step in the right direction", said Minister Sisulu.

"We will use our partnership with SDI to provide necessary resources for the collection of data in communities to ensure correct and effective services. I would also like to further invite the SDI to participate in the upcoming African Ministers of Housing Conference, as this is the kind of information we need to plan better," added Minister Sisulu.  

The event, attended by about 150 people representing slum dweller social movements, civil society, funders, academics, city, provincial and national government and the private sector, explored the possibilities and responsibilities for using digital data to inform inclusive urban development policy and practice.

Rose Molokoane, coordinator of the SDI network, said the communities must be organised in order to attract adequate partners, like government and private sector.

"We need to stress the creation partnerships in dealing with issues in a humanly way to avoid confrontations and protests", added Ms Molokoeane.
The South African Government has announced new regulations for the new four-year, non-renewable permit for nearly 200 000 Zimbabweans working and studying in South Africa.
The new permits, known as the Zimbabwean Exemption Permit (ZEP), will replace the current Zimbabwean Special Permit (ZSP), the Department of Home Affairs announced recently.

The initial special dispensation for Zimbabweans was approved in April 2009 to document Zimbabwean nationals, who were in South Africa illegally. The ZSP allowed applications from Zimbabweans with a valid Zimbabwean passport, evidence of employment, business or accredited study and a clear criminal record. Successful applicants were granted permits to stay and work, study or run a business in South Africa.

The permits expire on 31 December 2017 for the 197 941 approved permit holders.

Home Affairs Minister, Hlengiwe Mkhize, said the application process for ZEP opened on 15 September and would close on 30 November 2017.

The ZEP is open for valid ZSP holders only.

Minister Mkhize said the conditions for the new permit entitled the holder to work, study or conduct business in the country. The ZEP permits will be issued for a maximum period of four years, effective from 1 January 2018 and expiring on 31 December 2021. – Source:
International tourist numbers grew 6,4% in the first half of 2017, the strongest half-year figures in seven years, with Mediterranean destinations posting double-digit growth, the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) said recently.
The number of international tourists surged to around 598 million between January and June, some 36 million more than during the same period last year, the Madrid-based UN body said in a statement.

Rising business confidence and strong outbound demand from major source markets such as Britain, China, France and the United States were behind the rise.

"The first half of 2017 shows healthy growth in an increasingly dynamic and resilient tourism market, including a strong recovery in some of the destinations impacted by security challenges last year," said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.

Mediterranean destinations reported "particularly strong growth" in the first half of 2017, including those such as Egypt, Tunisia and Turkey, which suffered terrorist attacks in recent years, causing a slump in visitors, the organisation said.

Southern and Mediterranean Europe saw a 12% rise in international visitors, North Africa posted a 16% rise and the Middle East recorded an increase of 8,9%.

Tourist arrivals overall in Europe, the world's most-visited region, grew 7,7%.

Africa saw a 7,6% rise in visitor numbers, while Asia and the Pacific posted 5,7% growth.

International arrivals in the Americas were up 3% in the first half of the year.

Growth was solid in South America, up by 6%, while North America saw just 2% growth as a decrease in arrivals in the United States offset robust results for Canada and Mexico.

In the whole of 2016, the number of international tourist arrivals grew by 3,9% from the previous year to 1,23 billion and the UN body expects the figure to grow by 3% to 4% this year. – Source: AFP
Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa says the department will meet with young people to discuss government's plans to erect a national monument that will depict the country's identity based on its rich history and heritage.
The Minister said this when he launched the Heritage Month programme at the Imbizo Centre in Parliament in Cape Town recently.

He said the country, which came from a difficult colonial and apartheid past, needed to rewrite its own story to include history and heritage that were omitted from history books.

The Minister said the Department of Arts and Culture was in talks with the City of Tshwane to find a site for the monument. 

"If you go to Senegal in Dakar for instance, you will be confronted with a 10-metre statue of the African Renaissance Monument.

"If you are in Algiers in Algeria, you will see this place where you go to and pay respect to the people of Algeria.

"In South Africa, we are doing the same because we believe that a tale of South Africa still needs to be told in its fullest.

"That is why we are acknowledging that our freedom was not exclusively because of South Africans. Humanity across the globe contributed.

"We are engaging with the province of Gauteng continuously and Tshwane to have this space where we will have our story told," he said.

Meanwhile, Minister Mthethwa said a number of events would take place to commemorate Heritage Month, which is held under the theme "The Year of Oliver Tambo: Celebrating our Liberation Heritage".

These include:
  • a gathering of African leaders in Namibia on 14 September on the the African World Heritage Fund
  • the official opening of the cultural village of Sqakatha (Ntenga) on 18 September
  • the memorial lecture on Gert Sibande, The Lion of the East, on 21 September
  • the hosting of ministers from Southern African Development Community countries to discuss the Resistance and Liberation Heritage Route between 19 and 21 September.
– Source:
South Africa and Malawi recently signed a tourism cooperation agreement in Lilongwe, at the Malawi International Tourism Expo 2017, to enhance mutual collaboration between the two countries in the tourism sector.
South Africa's Minister of Tourism, Tokozile Xasa, says she hopes that the signing of the agreement helps "grow and enhance people-to-people relationships", specifically to enhance cooperation in areas around flights, visa issues, visas and small-scale business for the local people.

Malawi's Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism, Henry Mussa, says that the agreement is a big leap in strengthening bilateral relations.

According to the Official Malawi Government Online, Mussa says that "South Africa has assisted in the capacity-building of grading assessors, restocking of wildlife species in protected area and training of wildlife personnel at the Southern Africa Wildlife College". – Source: Traveller24
The "SA Agulhas II" embarked on its annual voyage to Gough Island on Thursday, 7 September 2017, in Cape Town.
The Gough63 overwintering team will spend 14 months on the island and will conduct research on weather forecasts which impact South Africa, as well as increase the country's understanding of climate change.

Other research that will be performed during the expedition include collecting diet and blood samples from the various bird species on the island and weather observation throughout the year. The oceanographers onboard will be conducting research using a Continuous Plankton Recorder, which measures the distribution and concentration of plankton in the Atlantic basin which serves as an indicator of ocean health.
The opening of the expanded Cape Town International Convention Centre, CTICC 2, is a welcome addition to South Africa's offering to host international events.
After breaking ground on the site about three years ago in July 2014, City of Cape Town Executive Mayor, Patricia de Lille, declared the expansion of the "ready to welcome the world" on Wednesday, 6 September. The City of Cape Town contributed R550 million towards the expansion costs.

Cape Town ranks as the number one city in Africa for business tourism events for 2017, having improved its ranking some 15 spots and is currently listed in the Top 40 destinations for business tourism in the world,  according to the International Congress and Convention Association.

Overall, the tourism sector contributed R402 billion in 2016 (9,3% of gross domestic product [GDP]) and is expected to grow by 2,5% to R412,2 billion (9,4% of GDP) in 2017. For the next five years, South Africa is expecting to host some 66 international association conferences and meetings, with an estimated economic potential of about R1,4 billion, according to major South African hotel group Sun International.

The national Department of Tourism towards the end of 2016 announced its Business Tourism Fund of R290 million to "help South Africa capture a greater share of international conferences and events" over the next three years. Some R20 million has been set aside for the next financial year (2017/18) and R90 million for the following three years – all acting as a catalyst that "propels South Africa's business events industry to a higher league".  – Source: Traveller24
Airbnb has proved a lifesaver to many South African women hosts, giving an especially welcome financial boost to single mothers, according to latest statistics released by the hotel and guest lodge booking platform.
In the report, Across the BRICS: How Airbnb Connects the Emerging Economies, the platform detailed how the service contributed towards gross domestic product (GDP) in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

"South Africa has seen the strongest growth in guest arrivals from BRICS nations at 380%, with explosive year-over-year growth in guests arriving from Brazil, by a factor of nine. South African hosts' total income earned from BRICS-based guests ranks the highest of the five countries at $1,88m (about R24,3 million)," the report read.

"The typical woman host in South Africa earned nearly $2 000 (R25 917.10) last year, more income than earned by the typical women hosts in other countries. More than 60% of women hosts in South Africa are Superhosts – hosts who are specially designated by Airbnb as hosting guests frequently, receiving a high number of five-star reviews, and being exceptionally responsive to guests and committed to reservations with 60% of South African women hosts with children, i.e., single mothers, use (sic) their Airbnb income to help them stay in their homes," it said.

About 5,3 million Airbnb users from developing nations generated more than $467 million over the past year, according to the latest statistics released by the app.

The year-on-year growth rate of intra-BRICS guest arrivals was reported at 134%, according to the study.

With interest in travel and tourism on the rise, reaching 10% of global GDP in 2017, Airbnb allows BRICS countries to benefit in their share of the income, said the report.

Airbnb is an online marketplace and hospitality service that helps people lease or rent short-term lodging, including vacation rentals, apartment rentals, homestays, hostel beds or hotel rooms with 97% of the listing price going directly to hosts. – Source:
The world's population scientists are set to tackle population and related issues as experts converge in Cape Town from 29 October to 4 November 2017 for the IPC – the first in the 88-year history of the conference to be held in sub-Saharan Africa.
Around 2 000 population scientists, policymakers, civic organisation and government leaders from around the world will assemble in Cape Town at the end of October to discuss the latest population research and debate pressing global and regional population issues.

Research on South Africa and the continent's challenges of poverty, population, health, economic growth and recommend policy interventions to advance development in the region, are some of the issues to be discussed at the IPC. Also on the agenda are population and policy challenges in Africa, HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases, non-communicable diseases, health and mortality, the challenge of producing skills for a 21st century African labour force, and challenges in overcoming poverty, inequality and vulnerability.

About 4 572 submissions received from 131 countries are indicative of the wealth of knowledge that will be shared among the experts from different parts of the world. Organisations working in the population field will hold sessions as part of the regular scientific programme of the conference to highlight research conducted on population issues or supported by their institutions to the global community of leading population scholars and policymakers present at the conference.

South Africa's Statistician-General, Dr Pali Lehohla, says the conference will help refocus the attention of political leaders on the continent on population and development issues. "Hosting the conference on sub-Saharan African soil will be an opportunity to re-energise the discourse of the role and integration of the population variables in national development agendas in the region," says Dr Lehohla.
The 10th FNB Joburg Art Fair taking place in Sandton, Johannesburg, from 8 to 10 September, was truly an international affair.
"I think a lot of people are not aware that we bring together more than 12 nations from the continent, the United States and Europe," said the director of the fair, Mandla Sibeko.

"We have over 60 exhibitors that are here and over 600 exhibitions showing works from around the continent and around the world."

Over the years, the FNB Art Prize has not only celebrated the work of shining South African artists, but has also been awarded to ground-breaking artists from around the African continent. This has allowed both the fair and the FNB Art Prize to enhance a creative dialogue within the growing contemporary African art markets. This continental-wide focus continues to guide the underlying principle of both the FNB Art Prize and the FNB JoburgArtFair. The 2017 FNB Art Prize winner is Peju Alatise.

Alatise has had several solo exhibitions and her works are in private and institutional collections around the world. She represented Nigeria at the 57th Venice Biennale.

As a winner of the FNB Art Prize, Alatise joins a prestigious list of winners since the launch of the FNB Art Prize in 2011. The FNB Art Prize has since become one of the coveted visual art prizes on the African continent. The winning artist receives a cash prize as well as an opportunity to showcase their work in a dedicated space at the FNB JoburgArtFair. – Sources: and
"The Dark Tower", which opened in South Africa on 8 September 2017, features power-packed performances from Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey, as well as several talented South African actors.
Sony Pictures Releasing International confirmed that: "Part of the film was shot on location in South Africa, which offered unique landscapes and awe-inspiring forests for the alternate dimension".

The production took the company to remote places such as the barren Karoo desert, where they built the Mid-World sets. To add a further layer of a parallel universe, the company moved to the Cederberg mountain range, where the protected nature reserve features dramatic caves and characteristic red rocks.

Said production designer, Christopher Glass: "Mid-World is a sort of a wasteland, yet not quite. There are a lot of remnants of an ancient civilisation that are scattered around this place; weirdly, the civilisation is a future civilization that has now become ancient. In South Africa, we found otherworldly deserts – it was almost like being on Mars. The horizon just kept going; I've never seen anything like that before. I think that there's a romance and a certain sense of adventure that goes into filming in Africa".

Other South African locations used included a wine farm area just outside Cape Town, where filmmakers built a village and an abandoned shopping mall in Cape Town, which was transformed into a seedy bar for a key sequence in the film. 

Over 30 local actors got the opportunity to showcase their talents alongside their Hollywood counterparts. These included Leeanda Reddy, Lemogang Tshipa, Mary Twala and Robert Whitehead, among others. – Source:
South African actress Terry Pheto won two awards at the annual International Achievement Recognition Awards in London.
Silver-screen darling Terry Pheto is back in South Africa after winning two awards at the annual International Achievement Recognition Awards in London recently.  

Pheto won Best Actress for her portrayal of Naledi Khama in the true-life romance A United Kingdom. She also scooped Best Actress for TV or Drama for portraying Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in the BET Nelson Mandela mini-series Madiba.

The actress first came to international attention playing a lead in the Oscar-winning film, Tsotsi.

Later, she starred in the American soap opera, The Bold and The Beautiful, and the feature film, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, featuring Idris Elba in the title role. – Source:
South African horseback adventurer, Barry Armitage, has jointly won the world's longest endurance horse race, the Mongol Derby, with Australian Olympian Ed Fernon.
After the gruelling race, which the Guinness Book of Records calls the world's longest and toughest horse race, 51-year-old Armitage said: "Winning this inspiring race brings no financial reward, simply the kudos of winning what the New York Times rated in the top 10 toughest endurance races on the planet."

Armitage shared winning of the ninth derby with Fernon in the record time of nine days, covering 1 020 km of rugged remote Mongolian steppes, with the first of 42 riders from around the world crossing the line on 18 August.

"My best moment of the race was when passing Ed (Fernon) on the last stage to be out front alone by a few hundred metres." said Armitage.

He said the sweltering heat made the going tough and that he and Fermon decided to save their horses and ride across the finish line together.

Armitage said the race was not for the faint-hearted, as it tested the limits of each competitor's survival skills, horsemanship and sheer endurance ability.

"Over 13 hours in the saddle every day for a week is a great physical challenge.

"You spend much of the race alone with your horses on the endless steppe chasing an unseen rider ahead, and you simply need to will yourself to keep going," he said.

Armitage is a three-time veteran of the event, having competed in the 2011 edition when he and riding partner Joe Dawson shot a television series, The Ride - Race Across the Steppe, about their exploits, initially screened on SABC 3 in 2012.

Over the years, South African riders have dominated the race, with four previous winners hailing from South Africa – more than from any other country. – Source:
South African XCO champion Alan Hatherly came into the 2017 UCI Under-23 Mountain Bike World Championships with a pertinent point to prove – to finish on the podium ... and that's exactly what he did.
According to the Bicycling website, after walking the course earlier in the week, Hatherly pointed out the technical nature of the track and said it was "super broken up and dusty".

The topography, however, perfectly suited the South African's style, featuring one major climb as well as a jump section, both of which play to his strengths.

"Accelerating into and out of each corner fits my style of riding – there must be over 10 switchbacks on that climb, I think it's about a 4-minute climb at race pace, so I'm targeting that."

His plan worked, as did his strategy of not going out too hard owing to the humidity and heat.

After a fast-paced first lap, it was clear there were only two real contenders in the race: Hatherly and New Zealand's Sam Gaze.

The two put on an XCO master class, racing neck-and-neck over the tricky and testing course.

It was only after the Lap 4 that the defending champion, Gaze, started to open a small gap on Hatherly.

In the end, Hatherly was able to marginally bring back the gap, finishing 11 seconds behind the Kiwi. – Source:
South African Hank McGregor claimed his second gold medal of the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships by partnering Jasper Mocké to victory in the men's K2 race on Sunday, 10 September, at Camps Drift in Pietermaritzburg.
Hungary emerged from the four days of competition as clearly the top nation at the championships with their two silver and two gold medals on the final day's action, taking their total for the competition to an incredible 20 medals (10 gold, eight silver and two bronze).

South Africa were second on the medal table with eight medals (two gold, three silver and three bronze) with Great Britain third on five (one, one and three).

For South Africa, McGregor added a second gold to the one he earned for winning the K1 event on Saturday when he and Mocké added a fourth medal to their personal tally of two golds from 2014 and 2016 and silver from 2015.

The local heroes produced a potent finish sprint to claim their victory, but behind them, in a bizarre photo-finish for second, the Hungarian pair of Adrián Boros and László Solti celebrated their second position before crossing the line.

That allowed South Africa's second boat of Andy Birkett and 18-year-old schoolboy, Jean van der Westhuyzen, to finish just centimetres back in third.

The top three were almost identical to the 2016 finish order when McGregor and Mocke beat Boros and Solti with Birkett and Louis Hattingh third.

This win is also the third time the McGregor/Mocke and Boros/Solti combinations have shared the top two positions with the Hungarians winning in 2015 and grabbing silver last year. – Source:
Kevin Anderson, who is the first South African to reach a grand slam final in the open era, lost to world number one Rafael Nadal in straight sets.
Kevin Anderson has had to set himself new goals after Sunday's US Open final.

The St Stithians old boy is ranked 15th in the world and says he now wants to break into the top 10.

"I put myself in a good position, so I always feel like if I'm taking care of the stuff I need to, the ranking will take care of itself. It's great to sit back at the end of the week and see the jump that I've made and the spots I've been able to climb, something I can be very proud of." – Source:
The Springboks and the Wallabies played to a 23-23 draw in a Rugby Championship thriller in Perth on Saturday, 9 September.
There were two converted tries and three penalties for each side.

The result means that the Boks consolidate second place on the Rugby Championship table and they are now three points behind the All Blacks, who they meet this weekend. . – Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Jacoline Schoonees
Design and layout: Gladwin Komane and René Marneweck


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