Issue 300 | 02 November 2017
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Moussa Faki Mahamat has met with President Jacob Zuma, the Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, and other senior government officials.  
Mr Mahamat focused on the efforts to reduce conflict on the continent. Mahamat also addressed economic development and integration in Africa.

He met with some of the South African-based African Union officials and organisations, including the Pan-African Parliament and the New Partnership for African Development, among others.
  The year 2017 was declared the Year of OR Tambo by government to mark the centenary birthday of Mr Tambo and to remember his principled leadership and ideals, which inspired many liberation struggle and anti-colonialism activists not only in South Africa but across the continent and the world.
On Friday, 27 October, President Jacob Zuma officiated at the OR Tambo centenary national celebrations to honour the legacy and life of the liberation struggle icon, African humanist and the longest-serving president of the governing party, Oliver Reginald Tambo, in his hometown of Mbizana, in the Eastern Cape.  

Mr Tambo was born in the Nkantolo village in Mbizana in the Eastern Cape on 27 October 1917 and he sadly passed away on 24 April 1993, aged 75, after he suffered a stroke.

President Zuma has defined the centenary celebrations as one of the most significant occasions for the country and the African continent and encouraged South Africans to draw lessons from Mr Tambo's life, leadership and to understand the qualities that made him one of the most internationally respected leaders and founding father of the democratic South Africa.

"On this occasion, we should remember and honour a life of a patriot, a solid and principled leader that sacrificed everything and endangered the lives of his family to liberate South Africa and African people from colonialism and imperialism. As we celebrate the life of this liberation struggle giant, we should also draw lessons from OR Tambo's exemplary leadership and advance his ideals and his believes in a peaceful, equal, non-racial and non-sexist democratic South Africa," said President Zuma.

"This occasion should further remind all South Africans of where we come from as a country and also encourage all of us to preserve and advance the progressive ideals of OR Tambo, which were centred around the struggle for justice and equal social and economic rights of all our people."

President Zuma characterised Mr Tambo as a visionary and a true African humanist who was loved by many on the continent and who shaped the foreign policy of the democratic South Africa as well as laid a foundation as the foremost diplomat and highly respected leader during a difficult time in the country's history. 

"Mr Tambo is respected throughout the world as a true internationalist and an embodiment of the highest values. He is recognised as an eminent leader who succeeded in mobilising his people and the international community to the national cause of South Africa and to the international cause of fighting racism, xenophobia and the consolidation of an international human rights movement," he said.
The Minister of Mineral Resources, Mosebenzi Zwane, has called on South Africa and Russia to work together to look at ways of ensuring demand sustainability in the platinum group metals (PGMs) industry in the face of falling commodity prices.  
"Being the two largest producers of these metals, in particular platinum and palladium, it is important that we ensure demand sustainability and seek ways to leverage benefit from these metals," Minister Zwane said.

He was speaking in Moscow, Russia, recently where he was attending the Second Conference on PGMs.

Minister Zwane stressed the importance of collaboration in areas where the two countries shared strength, especially as far as PGMs were concerned.

The conference was based on the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two countries signed on the margins of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) Conference, held in Durban in 2013.

The MoU also details areas of cooperation between the two countries in areas of skills development, research and development as well as investment opportunities, especially in the platinum sector.
Ambassador Nomasonto Sibanda-Thusi says South Africa invests in international trade and investment missions to attract investment.
Ambassador Sibanda-Thusi was speaking to South African businesspeople, who were attending the last day of the Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI) in Novosibirsk, Russia, on Thursday, 26 October.

"As representatives of the Government of South Africa, we are entrusted with the task of enhancing political and economic relations between the countries we are posted to.

"Our task is to promote cordial mutual bilateral relations that will enable us to position South Africa as a country of choice for bilateral trade and investment," said the country's Ambassador to Russia.

Organised and funded by the Department of Trade and Industry, the ITI was aimed at increasing exports of agro-processing and clothing and textile products, among others, to the Russian market.

Twenty South African companies participated in the mission.

Ambassador Sibanda-Thusi said government invested in trade and investment missions because companies that participated in these missions were able to contribute to growing the economy of South Africa and creating jobs that the country needed.

"We identify markets where opportunities exist for the South African value-added products in particular, to be exported to. Once the companies find new export markets for their products, they increase their production which assists in saving jobs and creating new job opportunities.

"That is the reason why we as government invest in these missions because their positive impact on our economy is far-reaching," she said. – Source:
  Ocean advocate and swimmer Lewis Pugh walked away with the top honour at the annual SAB Environmental Media and Environmentalist of the Year Awards.
The United Nations Patron of the Oceans won the Nick Steele Memorial Award for Environmentalist of the Year at the event on Tuesday, 24 October, for his work around raising global awareness for oceans by campaigning through his swim adventures, especially in icy waters, around the world.

Earlier this year, he embarked on his #ArcticDecade Campaign, which hoped to highlight the effects of climate change on the Arctic by swimming in Norway, Canada and Russia.

"[I am] deeply honoured to be named SAB Environmentalist of the Year, in what has been an extraordinary year," said Pugh in a tweet.

"The media shine a light on the voiceless. The media shine a light in dark corners. The media is the most important thing in any environmental campaign, and you have been incredibly generous to me in the past three years where I've been able to tell my story. I want to thank you very very much."

The awards, in its 29th year since it was started by the late conservationist Dr Ian Player, not only honour environmentalists but also members of the media who have done excellent reporting on environmental issues through video, audio, photography and written work. – Source:
Two of South Africa's top AIDS researchers – Professors Salim and Quarraisha Abdool Karim – received a Lifetime Achievement Award for Public Service from the Institute for Human Virology (IHV) in America for their awesome contributions to the global AIDS response.  
The institute recently hosted its 19th Annual International Meeting of Top Medical Virus Researchers in Maryland, United States of America.

The two infectious disease epidemiologists, who are married, were honoured with the prominent award during a gala at the Four Seasons Hotel in Baltimore, surrounded by hundreds of elite scientists from around the world.

IHV's Director, Dr Robert Gallo, said: "To me, both of these renowned individuals have made some of the greatest contributions in the history of HIV/AIDS in public health and epidemiology relevant to prevention and care of infected people.

"I don't know any person or persons who have done more to advance the proper care of people with HIV infection or the prevention of HIV infection among a population."

Quarraisha Abdool Karim is Associate Scientific Director of the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (Caprisa) and her husband Salim is Director. Both are Professors of Epidemiology at Columbia University in New York, and honorary academics at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Born in Tongaat in 1960, Quarraish has won several international awards.

They said they were "deeply appreciative" of the recognition and accepted the award on behalf also of the thousands of South African participants in their research. The couple, who are parents, are mainly focused on preventing HIV in women in Africa. One of their landmark studies – in 2010 – involved demonstrating that antiretrovirals can prevent sexual transmission of HIV. Their research has also shown a world first – that the same tenofovir gel can prevent genital herpes.

The two inspiring researchers are featured in the Academy of Science SA's new book "Legends of South African Science". – Source: BusinessWire/ sapeople
The IMC on the South African National AIDS Council (SANAC), chaired by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, has extended its warmest congratulations to Dr Nono Simelela on her appointment as WHO Assistant Director-General for Family, Women, Children and Adolescents.  
Dr Princess Nothemba (Nono) Simelela has since 2014 served as Special Adviser to Deputy President Ramaphosa, with her work ranging from support for the implementation of the National Strategic Plan for HIV, TB and Sexually Transmitted Infections to reviewing the Expanded Public Works Programme.

Her appointment to the WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, and her contribution to health and broader social policy in South Africa was acknowledged by government during a meeting on Thursday, 19 October 2017, of the SANAC IMC, which comprises 16 departments and the leadership of SANAC. Dr Simelela assumes her new position on 13 November 2017.

Deputy President Ramaphosa and the Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi, commended Dr Simelela and wished her well in her new global role under the leadership of WHO Director-General, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the first African in 69 years to be appointed head of the global health authority.
  Dr Simelela has more than 30 years of experience as an obstetrician, academic, advocate and public servant.

Her other senior leadership roles in South Africa have included serving as Chief Executive Officer of SANAC, Director of Technical Knowledge and Support for the International Planned Parenthood Federation and Cluster Manager for HIV, TB and Sexually Transmitted Infections for the Department of Health.

She has also sat on a number of committees and boards, including the Executive Board of the WHO and the WHO technical committee for the development of guidelines for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

The new WHO leadership team represents 14 countries, including all WHO regions, and women constitute more than 60% of this team.

Nine South African universities have been ranked among the best in the "2018 Global Best Universities" survey.  
This is according to a US News and World Report released recently. The rankings were produced to provide insight into how universities compare globally.

"Since an increasing number of students plan to enrol in universities outside of their own country‚ the Best Global Universities rankings – which focus specifically on schools' academic research and reputation overall and not on their separate undergraduate or graduate programmes – can help those applicants accurately compare institutions around the world‚" US News said.

The rankings include the top 1 250 institutions spread across 74 countries – up from the top 1 000 universities in 65 countries ranked last year.

The University of Cape Town scored 64 in the rankings‚ while the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Stellenbosch scored 50,4 and 49,6‚ respectively.

Other South African universities featured in the rankings include the University of Pretoria‚ the University of Johannesburg‚ the University of the Western Cape‚ North West University‚ the University of the Free State and the University of South Africa.
South Africa's pioneers, innovators, stalwarts and small and medium enterprises in the tourism industry were among the biggest winners on Sunday, 29 October, when the fifth annual Lilizela Tourism Awards shut down the Sandton Convention Centre with an unforgettable night of the stars.  
The Lilizela Tourism Awards are an initiative of the National Department of Tourism and are spearheaded by South African Tourism.

Established in 2013, the awards recognise and reward exemplary service among businesses in the local tourism sector, including accommodation establishments and tour operators to scenic attractions and cultural heritage sites. The awards are adjudicated through public votes and by a panel of industry judges and are audited by Grant Thornton.

The national Lilizela Tourism Awards are the culmination of the nine provincial ceremonies held across the country, which reward outstanding establishments in each of those areas. These provincial winners then vied for top honours in the national finals, held on Sunday.

Identified by the Government as one of the six pillars of the country's future economic growth, the Minister of Tourism, Tokozile Xasa, paid special tribute to South Africa's outstanding small tourism businesses.

Some of the SMMEs that were finalists or scooped awards on the night had been beneficiaries of the National Department of Tourism's market access and enterprise development programmes.

"You add diversity and new flavours to our tourism offering and you contribute to social cohesion and empower communities," said Minister Xasa. "You are entrepreneurs who are contributing to our economy, by creating jobs that feed families and nourish communities. You are the living embodiment of the inclusive, transformed economic growth that our country aspires to."

In addition to the awards handed out in a number of categories, Minister Xasa also announced unprecedented multiple recipients of this year's Minister's Award to mark the five-year anniversary of the Lilizela Tourism Awards.

This prestigious award recognises proudly South African organisations or individuals who, through sheer dedication and passion, have excelled in positioning the country as a tourism destination of choice, contributing to the vibrancy and growth of the sector.

Sindiswa Nhlumayo was honoured posthumously for her immense contribution to the tourism industry.

World-renowned Ndebele artist and industrial designer, Esther Mahlangu, was inducted into the inaugural Hall of Fame for being an exemplary global ambassador for South Africa's indigenous arts and cultural heritage.

Some of the category winners also included The Workshop ko kasi (Culture and Lifestyle), Baviaanskloof (Scenic Beauty), Soweto By Bike (Roots & Culture), The Gorge Private Lodge and Spa (Best Five-star Game Lodge), and The Oyster Box (Five-Star Hotel Award for Service Excellence).  – Source: Traveller24
South African chef Chantel Dartnall has been named the Best Lady Chef in the World at the international 2017 Best Chef Awards in Warsaw, Poland.  
Chantel – who is the chef at Restaurant Mosaic in Elandsfontein, Pretoria – said it was an "incredible moment" and thanked "each and every one of the incredible people in my life that work just as hard to guide and assist me in this journey and help to make all these incredible dreams reality".

The young chef, who was South Africa's Chef of the Year in 2015, was placed 32 in the Top 100 Chefs in the World … and is the only South African to feature in the Top 100 list.

Chantel said just being nominated as one of the 18 best female chefs in the world had been an honour and "tremendous accolade", let alone winning!

She said she was "incredibly proud to be representing not only Restaurant Mosaic … but South Africa as well".

Restaurant Mosaic is renowned for its modern fine dining in an art nouveau haven, where Chantel presents fresh concepts with a botanical touch that are a visual feast and exquisitely feed all the senses. – Source:



For those not already lucky enough to be living in South Africa, "Lonely Planet" has selected South Africa as one of the Top 10 countries travellers need to visit in 2018.

Apart from South Africa's beautiful beaches, majestic mountains, delicious wine and wildlife, Lonely Planet also gives a shout out to the country's vibrant culture and cosmopolitan city, Cape Town.

The travel guide book publisher says South Africa has long been one of the world's most alluring countries, and next year it will be even more so … as the country celebrates Nelson Mandela's Centenary with an official programme of events from sports to the arts.

"So with more to see than ever, and favourable exchange rates offering great value, 2018 is a phenomenal year to visit South Africa," says Lonely Planet.

Chile clinched the top spot in the list as it celebrates its 200 years of independence next year… and has just added non-stop flights from London and Melbourne straight to Santiago.

Other countries from Africa featured in the Top 10 list are Mauritius at number eight and Djibouti, on the Horn of Africa, at number four. – Source:
  Cricket South Africa (CSA) has congratulated the Proteas on their achievement in winning the T20 International Series after they beat Bangladesh by 83 runs in the second game of the two-match series at Senwes Park on Sunday, 29 October, to clinch the series 2-0.
They won the first match by 20 runs at the Mangaung Oval on Thursday, 26 October.

"This is another important step forward for our new leadership team headed by national head coach Ottis Gibson, Faf du Plessis as well as stand-in captain, JP Duminy, and congratulations are due to them and all the players and management staff," commented CSA Acting Chief Executive, Thabang Moroe.

"It has been heartening to see the way responsibility has been given to some of the younger players to show that they can step up and broaden our talent pool.

"The time has come for us to move up the T20 rankings to the same level achieved by our Test and ODI squads and this forms part of this process.

"I would also like to thank and congratulate the Free State and North West unions that hosted these matches. They have been extremely well supported," concluded Moroe. – Source:
The elevation of South Africa's TransCape mountain bike race to UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) status makes it an attractive proposition for local and international professionals.
  This is the view of local pro and former Olympian Philip Buys, who finished runner-up in the National MTB Series behind team-mate Matthys Beukes recently.

The seven-day, 614-km race across the Western Cape from 4 February 2018 takes competitors through some of the most iconic trails in the country and UCI status is set to increase its appeal.

"To have UCI status is very good for events of this nature," said Buys.

"It plays a big role for riders who want to improve their seeding for World Cup events and it's ideal to have more races on the local scene for our cyclists to do that."

The TransCape will join other UCI-graded local races such as the Cape Epic and Cape Pioneer Trek and Buys said these were important for riders who were focused on earning world-ranking points.

"For that, it is good to have access to these races and it will also work for the overseas market."

ASG Events chief executive, Wynand de Villiers, said the reputation of the country's most luxurious mountain bike race would be enhanced by its UCI status.

"The option to earn ranking points increases its value for pro cyclists as it assists in their qualification for Olympic Games and world championship events," he said.

"UCI sanctioning also brings with it a windfall of international media coverage, all of which helps to attract the top riders from around the world."

He added that the TransCape had a prize purse of R250 000, which was well within the UCI's requirements.

De Villiers said they went to "paranoid levels" to ensure their service and hospitality levels were of the highest quality.

"We know it's tough enough on the bike, hence there is no reason to test riders' patience and tenacity off it."

The event, which starts in Knysna and finishes at La Couronne Wine Farm in Franschhoek, is limited to 135 two-man teams. – Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Yolande Snyman
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