Issue 308 | 25 January 2018
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  President Jacob Zuma has received letters of credence from 13 ambassadors and high commissioners-designate who are going to represent their countries in South Africa.
The event to welcome the new ambassadors took place at the Sefako Makgatho Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria.

Country representatives who presented their credentials were from Spain, Syria, Nigeria, Chad, Germany, Lesotho, Ethiopia, Sudan, Cuba, Portugal, Lebanon, Belarus and Gambia.

President Zuma congratulated them on their appointments to serve with South Africa and wished them well in working towards entrenching existing relations.

"As you are aware, we have just concluded in December with the centenary celebrations of one of our forebears and former African National Congress (ANC) President, Comrade Oliver Reginald Tambo.

"We wish to thank you for joining us in celebrating the life of a giant who played a key role in the liberation of this country, particularly in the pioneering of our global solidarity movement throughout the world.

"Similarly, in its recently held 106-year birthday celebration, the newly elected National Executive Committee of the ANC declared 2018 as "100 Years of Nelson Mandela: The Year of Renewal, Unity and Jobs".

"It is my singular honour to invite you to join South Africans, Africans and peace-loving people of the world in celebrating the centenary of our former President Nelson Mandela."

"Our foreign policy is predicated on the values and principles of the Constitution, which have become synonymous with Madiba's vision for peace, freedom, justice and reconciliation.

"We remain grateful to the people of the world who, through the United Nations collective, officially declared 18 July as the Nelson Mandela International Day in November 2009."

"We are in this regard also inspired by Madiba's words when he said:

'South Africa's future foreign relations will be based on our belief that human rights should be the core concern of international relations, and we are ready to play a role in fostering peace and prosperity in the world we share with the community of nations'."
President Jacob Zuma on Saturday, 20 January, received a courtesy call from South Sudan President Salva Kiir at his official residence, Mahlamba Ndlofu, in Pretoria.  
President Kiir briefed President Zuma on the political and security situation in South Sudan.

In 2014, President Zuma appointed Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa as the Special Envoy to South Sudan to assist with the resolution of the political impasse in that country.

South Africa and South Sudan enjoy good political relations. – Source:
Team SA positively positions SA at WEF
  Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is joining  various discussion platforms at the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, with the aim to develop a response to new strategies towards transforming governance in various parts of the world.
The WEF in Davos-Klosters is taking place between 23 and 26 January 2018 under the theme: "Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World".

On the first day of the WEF meeting, Team South Africa reached out to international partners as part of efforts to position the country favourably to the rest of the globe.

At the start of the meeting on Tuesday, South Africa held several interactions with partners in government and business as part of not only positioning the country favourably but also as part of building partnerships to address global issues.

"The forum presents South Africa with various platforms to outline the country's efforts to secure sustainable and inclusive economic growth, address governance weaknesses in the public and private sectors and to contribute positively to the development of solutions to global challenges," said The Presidency.

It further added that the country continued to attract global interest in view of its position as a sophisticated, diverse and promising emerging market, as recently endorsed by Goldman Sachs Portfolio Strategy Research.

Deputy President Ramaphosa and his Ministerial delegation are participating in a range of public forums and bilateral meetings as part of positioning South Africa's attractiveness as an investment destination, trade partner and member of the international community.


Deputy President Ramaphosa attended the opening plenary session of the forum as well as a plenary discussion on the conference theme. He also held bilateral meetings with President Paul Kagame of Rwanda; President João Lourenco of Angola; Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre of Somalia; Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam of Singapore; and Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani of Qatar.

The Deputy President also held a bilateral meeting with WEF Founder and Executive Director, Prof. Klaus Schwab. At the bilateral meeting, the Deputy President expressed South Africa's appreciation for the WEF's continued support for and commitment to the development of the African continent.

In addition to positioning South Africa as a leading competitive and investment-friendly destination that is open for business, government continued to utilise the WEF Davos 2018 platform to bring attention to the significant centenary celebrations of the iconic global leader and late South African President, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.

On Wednesday, Deputy President Ramaphosa contributed to a breakfast session, entitled: "Building Peace in Africa".
"This will be complemented by various interactions by ministers and discussions between South African businesses and international partners. Deputy President Ramaphosa, together with several ministers, will participate in a country strategy dialogue on South Africa, which will focus international attention on measures to grow the South African economy and promote development," said The Presidency.

He also held discussions with Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen of Denmark after which Team South Africa's day culminated in a South Africa Business Dinner hosted by Brand South Africa.

The annual meeting will conclude on Friday. – Source:

Mr Masekela was one of the pioneers of jazz music in South Africa whose talent was recognised and honoured internationally over many years. He kept the torch of freedom alive, globally fighting apartheid through his music and mobilising international support for the struggle for liberation and raising awareness of the evils of apartheid.  
President Jacob Zuma has expressed heartfelt condolences on the sad passing of internationally acclaimed jazz artist, legendary trumpeter, cultural activist and liberation struggle veteran, Hugh Masekela, who passed on at the age of 78.

President Zuma bestowed the National Order of Ikhamanga in Gold in 2010 on Masekela for his exceptional contribution to music and the struggle against apartheid in South Africa.

"The nation mourns one its most recognisable signature talent in the person of Bra Hugh Masekela. It is an immeasurable loss to the music industry and to the country at large. His contribution to the struggle for liberation will never be forgotten. We wish to convey our heartfelt condolences to his family and peers in the arts and culture fraternity at large. May his soul rest in peace," said President Zuma.
  The Minister of Water and Sanitation, Nomvula Mokonyane, represented President Jacob Zuma at the inauguration ceremony of the President-elect of the Republic of Liberia, His Excellency Mr George Weah, Sr on 22 January 2018 in Monrovia, Liberia.

Liberia and South Africa share strong economic and trade relations, further cemented during a State Visit to South Africa by the outgoing President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, last year. President Sirleaf left office after serving two six-year terms as Africa's first elected female Head of State.

President Zuma has remarked that the peaceful and democratic manner under which the elections in Liberia were conducted signified yet another positive step towards deepening democracy on the African continent.
President Jacob Zuma has congratulated the Governor of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), Lesetja Kganyago, on his appointment as the new Chairperson of the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC).  
The IMF is an organisation of 189 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.

"The appointment of Mr Kganyago is a milestone in our call for the inclusion of representation of expertise and leadership from emerging and developing economies in the global economic arena," said President Zuma.

"We wish Governor Kganyago success in his new role and we are confident that he will represent us well. He is equal to the task," said President Zuma.
The Foreign Office Consultations (FOCs) serve to reflect on matters of mutual interest within the global arena, as well as a review mechanism to take stock of progress in the implementation of the decisions of the previous Joint Ministerial Commission (JMC).
South Africa and India convened the FOCs on 18 January 2018 in New Delhi, India. The consultations form part of the structured mechanism which governs bilateral relations between the two countries. This mechanism comprises a JMC and the FOCs.

The consultations on 18 January 2018 were co-chaired, from the South African side, by Professor Anil Sooklal, Deputy Director-General within the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, responsible for the Asia and Middle East regions; and from the side of India, Dr Neena Malhotra, Joint Secretary, East and Southern Africa, from the Ministry of External Affairs.

The meeting reviewed developments in the bilateral relationship between South Africa and India since the holding of the Ninth JMC in Durban, in May 2015, and the previous round of FOC, held in Pretoria in May 2016. The 10th JMC will take place in India during the course of 2018.

South Africa and India enjoy a Strategic Partnership based on shared values and common interests and the meeting reflected on progress made with regard to the conclusion of a number of legal instruments, including agreements and memoranda of understanding, aimed at promoting cooperation within specific areas. These areas relate to visa simplification procedures, cooperation in higher education, audiovisual co-production and renewable energy.

The meeting further reflected on ways to grow commercial links between South Africa and India, especially in the fields of trade and investment, while noting that bilateral trade had grown steadily over the last decade. Between January to November 2017, two-way trade reached R97 billion and further areas of cooperation were being explored in the financial services industry, defence procurement, agro-processing and deep mining equipment.

The meeting noted that good cooperation existed between South Africa and India within multilateral bodies, and both countries pledged to cooperate further in the pursuit of the reform of the institutions of global governance. Close collaboration would continue in the fight against terrorism and within important groupings such as Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS); India, Brazil and South Africa (IBSA); and the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), the latter where South Africa has taken over the Chair for the period 2017 to 2019.

South Africa and India also committed to strengthening bilateral relations in 2018, specifically in the areas of trade, foreign direct investment, tourism and people-to-people contact, also considering that in 2018, 25 years of the establishment of diplomatic relations are being celebrated by both countries.
  WTM Africa will take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from 18 April to 20 April 2018.
WTM Africa 2018 will host several tourism products from around the continent in the hotel and travel industry, as well as services in luxury travel.

WTM Africa is one of six shows in the WTM portfolio, with other exhibitions taking place in London, São Paulo, Dubai, Penang and Cannes. These expos place the focus on regional products and services while giving them a global reach that will boost the industry, and as such are the perfect platforms to exhibit African businesses to the world.

Organised by Reed Exhibitions Limited, this year's annual meeting is expected to attract more than 7 500 attendees, showcasing the inbound and outbound travel markets from over 45 countries.

Attendees will get a chance to access unique business opportunities and top quality contacts from around the world.

Through pre-scheduled appointments and on-site networking, guests can drive their commercial success with all-year-round connections and updates on industry news, developments and technologies. – Source:
The former financier turned chef is accompanying the Brand South Africa team to Davos for the annual World Economic Forum Meeting. Host of the popular "Africa on a Plate" TV series, Lentswe Bhengu will be introducing guests at a Brand South Africa hosted dinner in Davos to the flavours of Mzansi.  
Chef, former banker, MC and a man who believes in giving back, Lenstwe Bhengu believes that following your dreams is the only way to fulfilment. He left the security of his high-powered career in finance to study the culinary arts. As he told BONA magazine, "The thought of walking away from a comfortable job to start something new was scary and exciting at the same time. However, I knew that I had ignored my dream for a long time. So, in 2011, I quit my job and enrolled into a culinary school."

He trained at the prestigious The Culinary Academy in the Cape winelands before working in prominent kitchens like the Savoy Cabbage, The Roundhouse and Saucisse Deli. Despite the long hours and demanding environment, Bhengu knew he had made the right choice.

He has been cooking since he was eight, following his mother around the kitchen. One of his prize possesions is a blank recipe book he received from her. "My mom told me to go and fill it up with all the nice things I wanted to make for my family. I still have it".

"I spoke to my dad and he said to me if you can't tick yes to all the boxes in your life, that's what you should change and that's when I embarked on this journey," on making the change from finance to food. – Source:
  Antjie Krog made her debut as poet at the age of 17 and says her life would be empty without poetry.
The poet and author, Antjie Krog, has become the first South African to receive a prestigious Dutch cultural award.

The Golden Goose Feather (Gouden Ganzenveer) is awarded annually to a person or institution for their great importance for the written and printed word in the Dutch language.

With 11 books of poetry and five non-fiction books, Krog is one of the great writers of South Africa.

However, her work has also found a good market in the Netherlands with eight of her poetry books translated into Dutch. She visits the country often and says she was given a platform by the Dutch who embrace poetry like no one else, even dedicating a day to the celebration of the art form.

The Netherlands has a strong bond with South African artists.

Krog receives the award for her poetry but also her exceptional integrity as a writer and journalist. Consul General in Cape Town for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Bonnie Horbach, says Krog's work is well respected in the Netherlands.

"Her work is very versatile and her poetry also has an influence in the Netherlands; people love to listen to it but it also touches you right at the core of your sole and she's a great performer of her own work as well." – Source:
Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters has returned to South Africa for the first time since winning the Miss Universe title in November 2017.

While here, Demi will embark on a week-long tour that includes visits to Johannesburg, Cape Town and her hometown, Sedgefield.

During her stay, the star will be hosting her Unbreakable workshops in both Soweto and Cape Town with members of the community, as well as revisiting victims of the Knysna fires who were beneficiaries of her fund-raising efforts for disaster relief in 2017.

"I can't begin to express my gratitude and how proud I am to represent our country as Miss Universe. Being a global ambassador is as much a responsibility as it is an honour. Our nation is comprised of many different backgrounds and cultures, one of the many things that makes me immensely proud to be a South African. I am very excited to celebrate this achievement with my people in the spirit of Mzansi," Demi-Leigh said in a statement to the press. – Source:
  Just over two years ago, "Pigcasso" was on the verge of being skinned and slaughtered on a hog farm. On Friday, 19 January, she headlined an art exhibition at the V&A Waterfront.
Ever since Pigcasso's buddy, Joanne Lefson, came to her rescue two years ago, the duo has conquered the art world through painting.

Pigcasso, named after renowned artist Pablo Picasso, even signs her own signatures!

And on Friday night, after making a grand entrance on a pink carpet with camera lenses focused on her, the painting piggy became the first non-human in the world to headline her own exhibition.

"OINK" at the Clock Tower Square at the V&A Waterfront will run until February, before heading to London, Berlin and Amsterdam.

The creative duo aims to inspire consumers to think more consciously about the food they eat, especially meat.

Uma Mesthrie, activist Mahatma Gandi's great-granddaughter, met Pigcasso two years ago, by chance – she had been visiting an animal sanctuary in Franschhoek where she spotted a picture of her grandfather and a quote referencing his love for animals.

"They actually saved her and gave her a home. I'm a vegan and I'm very appreciative of any work that's being done to draw attention to the suffering of animals."

Lefson said the artworks represented a collaboration of human and pig. She chooses the colours and themes with Pigcasso doing all the physical brushwork.

Lefson said the pig weighed about 200kg and had sold over 38 paintings – from Australia to California and even South Korea – collecting over R350 000 for Farm Sanctuary South Africa.

The price tag of Pigcasso's artworks range up to R25 000 – with art collectors scrambling to covet a one-of-a-kind original by the sensational swine. – Source:
The nominees of the 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards were announced recently and South Africa's Caster Semenya will face off against 2017 Wimbledon champion, Garbiñe Muguruza, and an all-American quartet led by tennis superstar Serena Williams in the World Sportswoman of the Year category.  
Besides the irrepressible Williams and Muguruza‚ Semenya will also have to contend with 16-time world athletics championship medalist Allyson Felix‚ 19-year-old swimming sensation Katie Ledecky and Overall World Cup champion skier Mikaela Shiffrin in the hotly contested category.

Semenya‚ who eased to the 800-m women's gold medal in the 2016 Olympic Games‚ added the gold medal in the same event to her burgeoning collection in last year's world championships in London.

Semenya also won bronze in the women's 1 500 m at the same World Championships.

The winners‚ as voted for by members of the Laureus World Sports Academy‚ will be revealed in Monaco on 27 February 27. – Source:
  South African umpire Marais Erasmus has won the prestigious David Shepherd Trophy for the International Cricket Council (ICC) Umpire of the Year for the second year running.

Erasmus, who is part of the Elite Panel of ICC Umpires, is the fifth umpire to win this trophy after Simon Taufel (2004-2008), Aleem Dar (2009-2011), Kumar Dharmasena (2012) and Richard Kettleborough (2013-2015).

The announcement was made by the ICC as part of the organisation's individual award winners for 2017. – Source:
South Africa's Daryl Impey surprised even himself when he won the UCI season-opening Tour Down Under on the streets of Adelaide on Sunday, 21 February.  

Impey secured the biggest win of his career when he finished safely in the peloton behind stage winner Andre Greipel, who beat Impey's Mitchelton-SCOTT teammate Caleb Ewan with a lunge to the finish line.

Impey went into Sunday's final stage on the same time as pre-race favourite Richie Porte but ahead of the Tasmanian on a count back.

All he needed to do to secure the overall win was to finish safely, an outcome that appeared never to be in doubt on the 90-kilometre stage on the Adelaide street circuit.

Impey came into the race as the final lead-out rider for Ewan and was never expected to challenge for general classification.

But his determined ride up Willunga Hill to finish second to Porte in Saturday's penultimate stage was enough to place him level on time with Porte and ahead on a count back because of his superior finishing positions in the earlier stages.

"Coming into the race, I didn't expect to win it but sometimes the stars line up and everything goes well," he said.

"I worked really hard in the off-season so I'm happy to get this win."

Impey said the final stage, 20 laps of a 4,5-kilometre street circuit, had been "pretty hectic" as a number of riders battled to improve their overall finishing positions.

The 33-year-old won a stage of the Tour De France and wore the yellow jersey for two stages in 2013.

He won the 2009 Tour of Turkey and the 2014 Tour of Alberta but Sunday's win was his first on the World Tour.

He said the win, combined with Nicholas Dlamini's effort in taking the King of the Mountain title, was a boost for South African cycling.

"There's a lot more to expect from South Africans," he said. – Source:
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Editor: Delien Burger
Picture Editor: Yolande Snyman
Design and layout: Gladwin Komane


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