Monday 23 October 2017
(Bloomberg 07/19/13)
South Africa will probably cut its economic growth forecast for this year to as low as 2 percent as mining strikes and a recession in Europe curb exports, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said. Africa’s largest economy may expand 2 percent to 2.2 percent in 2013, lower than a February estimate of 2.7 percent and down from 2.5 percent expansion last year, Gordhan said in an interview with Bloomberg TV in Moscow today. “Growth is likely to be lower,” he said. “We will have to accommodate our spending patterns in line with what our revenue picture shows.” The government is limiting spending for the next three years as strikes in the mining industry and slumping demand from Europe for manufactured exports...
( 07/19/13)
The incorrect use of bulletproof vests during the Battle of Bangui in the Central African Republic (CAR) in March was probably why South African soldiers were killed, according to a report on Friday. Colonel Renier "Doibi" Coetzee, a senior South African Special Forces officer, made this statement on behalf of his superiors at a press conference in Pretoria earlier this week. Coetzee said soldiers who had worn their jackets correctly withstood several bullets and survived the ordeal. He said that after the March 23 battle it had emerged that some of the South African troops had not worn their jackets in the prescribed way. "Some took out the bulletproofing plates, while others just wore breast plates. This left their backs...
(The New York Times 07/19/13)
WALLACEDENE, South Africa — Abdugadish Mohamed stood just inside the doorway of the one-room shop he runs in this tense, smoky township outside Cape Town. He peered warily at the surrounding grid of dirt paths and ramshackle homes. “We are scared, man,” said Mr. Mohamed, 28, a Somali and the manager of the Bafana Bafana Cash Store. “These people are dangerous.” Mr. Mohamed and his two workers — both of whom are Zimbabwean refugees — had been chased from the township, and their shop looted to the walls, a little over a month earlier. They had been back for only a week. Their first job had been to build a metal protective cage around the cash till. “This place, it...
(eNCA 07/19/13)
DANVILLE, Pretoria - Several poverty-stricken families in Pretoria received a gift on Nelson Mandela's 95th birthday, when President Jacob Zuma visited the area to hand over low-cost housing to the community. The Danville housing project is expected to accommodate over a hundred families of all races. On Thursday, Zuma made his third visit to the area. His prior visits saw him taking time out to spend with the poor families in the area to address their issues with accommodation and service delivery. Thursday's visit didn't leave residents disappointed. Several were informed that the RDP houses they had applied for, had been granted to them. Magda Croukamp, a recipient told eNCA the can't thank Zuma enough for the house. "We were...
( 07/19/13)
A number of Springbok rugby players gave 67 minutes of their time in Langa township in Cape Town and Eldorado Park in Johannesburg as part of the international Mandela Day campaign in honour of South Africa's former president, who turned 95 on Thursday. Springbok captain Jean de Villiers, backs Juan de Jongh and Gio Aplon, as well as loose forward Siya Kolisi, spent their 67 minutes at Siyabulela Primary School in Langa outside Cape Town. Boks for Books. As part of the recently launched Boks for Books campaign, the four Springbok stars read to learners of the school and participated in a Tag Rugby Clinic. "Boks for Books is a superb initiative by Saru [the South African Rugby Union] and...
( 07/19/13)
President Jacob Zuma has thanked South Africans and people around the world for their support and display of love for the country's former president on Nelson Mandela International Day. Thousands of people from around the country and the world took time to roll up their sleeves and help the less fortunate on Thursday, Mandela's 95th birthday. "This year has seen the biggest Madiba birthday celebration ever. We regard this ... as a fitting tribute to the triumph of the South African people against institutionalised racism, led by Madiba and many other illustrious freedom fighters," Zuma told a press conference after the conclusion of the 6th South Africa-European Union Summit in Pretoria on Thursday. Zuma reported that the 95-year-old, who is...
( 07/19/13)
The dismissal of a court application for the state to fund legal representation for victims of the Marikana shooting is a "mockery of justice", the UDM said. "We take exception to the fact that these people were killed by the state forces," United Democratic Movement secretary general Bongani Msomi said in a statement, adding that the party respected the court's decision. "Furthermore, it seems that justice is being made a mockery of by murderers in police uniforms who are having their bills footed by the state." On Thursday, the High Court in Pretoria dismissed an application for the state to fund legal representation for victims of the Marikana shootings. Dali Mpofu, acting for the wounded and arrested Marikana miners at...
(BBC News Africa 07/19/13)
In August 2012, 34 miners were shot dead by police as they protested outside a mine in Marikana, just outside Johannesburg. Nearly 50 years after he left South Africa as a teenager, Peter Hain MP returns to ask how the country of his childhood, once such a beacon of hope, is now the scene of such tragedy. In this documentary for the BBC's award-winning This World strand, Hain speaks to the families of some of the men killed at Marikana and uncovers a day of shocking brutality with many disturbing allegations. With unprecedented access to Lonmin, the company at the centre of the tragedy, he visits the mine and talks to the CEO. But what led the South African ruling...
(Independent Online 07/19/13)
Cape Town - The rand strengthened, set for a second weekly advance, and bonds gained after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke quelled concern that a reduction of US stimulus was imminent. Bernanke said yesterday it was “way too early to make any judgment” about starting tapering in September. On July 17, he said the central bank’s quantitative easing is “by no means on a preset course.” Bond purchases by the Fed and other developed-nation central banks helped boost demand for high-yielding assets including South African stocks and bonds, supporting the rand. “Quantitative easing in some form or another is going to be with us at least for the rest of the year,” Mohammed Nalla, head of strategic research at...
(Reuters 07/19/13)
(Reuters) - A top South African diplomat said on Thursday that preparations for an election in Zimbabwe at the end of the month were "not looking good", unusually strong criticism of President Robert Mugabe from his powerful neighbor. Lindiwe Zulu, President Jacob Zuma's special adviser on Zimbabwe, said Zuma had called Mugabe to tell him he was not pleased with the run-up to the poll on July 31, a date fixed by Mugabe after a Constitutional Court ruling but criticized by Mugabe's opponents and South Africa's government as too soon. "We are concerned because things on the ground are not looking good," Zulu told Reuters. The election is supposed to end five years of fractious unity government under a deal...
(AFP (eng) 07/18/13)
As Nelson Mandela turns 95 on Thursday he also marks 15 years of marriage to Graca Machel, who throughout his hospitalisation has wooed a nation with her dignified poise. During the last six weeks Machel has kept a near round-the-clock vigil at her husband's hospital bedside, leaving to attend Mandela's charity events or visit their Johannesburg home. But then the Mozambican born Machel, 27 years younger, has already been by Mandela's side for 15 years of marriage. "We make sure we spend time with each other because we were so lonely before. You only live once," she remarked before the ravages of time tightened their grip on her husband. Machel married Mandela in 1998, 12 years after her first husband,...
(AFP (eng) 07/18/13)
Ratings agency Moody's maintained South Africa's Baa1 sovereign debt rating on Thursday, praising a crimp on public spending and the possibility of a negotiated end to mining sector turmoil. Moody's said Africa's largest economy had shown "renewed commitment to spending restraint" in its last two budget statements, helping reach a government target to steady debt at about 50 percent of output. "At these levels, South Africa's debt would remain comparable to that of its peers," Moody's said. With the South African economy on the rocks and reform efforts stalled, some had predicted Moody's would issue a downgrade. Moody's welcomed a tacit agreement between the mining companies, unions and the government this month to stabilise unrest in the economy's key mining...
(Bloomberg 07/18/13)
Thousands of South Africans will donate time to charity work today in a poignant commemoration of Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday as he lies critically ill in a Pretoria hospital. President Jacob Zuma will hand over state-built houses to poor families and the government has asked students to stop lessons and sing for the former president at 8 a.m. local time. The United Nations marks his birthday with a special session. Mandela, who was jailed for 27 years for opposing white minority rule before leading the country to democracy in 1994, was hospitalized with a recurring lung infection on June 8. “He made it his duty to reconcile all the people of South Africa,” Ahmed Kathrada, who is one of Mandela’s...
(Dw-World 07/18/13)
From sipping cocktails with rebel fighters to negotiating peace alongside Nelson Mandela, mediator Vasu Gounden says the first step towards resolving even the bloodiest disputes is being willing to find common ground. As a student leader during the mid-1980s state of emergency in apartheid South Africa and training as a trade union lawyer, Vasu Gounden seemed to be set up for a life of conflict. Under orders to make the country ungovernable, the anti-apartheid students would engage in civil disobedience, which often escalated into violent confrontations with the state. Gounden was jailed for his activism and put on trial for a year. Due to his high profile, thousands of students would rally outside the police station whenever he was arrested...
(Usa Today 07/18/13)
JOHANNESBURG - South Africans prepared for celebrations and charity work as a way to commemorate the birthday of former president Nelson Mandela, who turns 95 on Thursday in a hospital where he has been for weeks for a lung infection. "It is obviously more significant now because of his medical condition," said Noor Nieftagodien, an associate professor from the University of Witwatersrand. "Previously, his birthday embodied our democracy, but it's profoundly more important now." The United Nations has declared Thursday to be Nelson Mandela International Day and urged people to use the occasion to honor his work to reconcile whites and blacks in South Africa. Mandela has been in a Pretoria hospital since June 8 and remains in a "critical...
(Voice of America 07/18/13)
Thursday marks the 95th birthday of anti-apartheid icon and former South African president Nelson Mandela, who has been hospitalized for more than a month with a recurring lung infection. South Africans have big celebrations planned for Mandela's birthday, which has been designated an international day of service. On his birthday, known as "Mandela Day," people are asked to give 67 minutes of their time doing something charitable, or one minute for each year he dedicated to his struggle for social justice. Mandela is being treated at a Pretoria hospital, where officials have described his condition as "critical but stable." On Wednesday, his daughter, Zindzi Mandela, said he is making "remarkable progress" and may be going home "anytime soon." She also...
( 07/18/13)
The next phase in Africa's growth must be industrialisation, with the continent producing its own value-added goods, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies told the South Africa-European Union business forum in Pretoria on Wednesday. "There's a growing and significant recognition that Africa's time has come, that Africa is part of the new growth frontier," Davies told the forum, held on the eve of the 6th SA-EU summit scheduled for Thursday. "The African continent has performed relatively well during the [2008-09 global financial] crisis, but more significantly the African continent is positioning itself to make some very important decisions which we believe will lead the continent to a new phase of growth and development. "We can no longer afford to locate...
( 07/18/13)
South African mining group Exxaro Resources and French independent power producer GDF Suez have signed an agreement to develop a 600-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant outside Lephalale in Limpopo province. The proposed site is 17 kilometres northwest of Lephalale in the Waterberg region and adjacent to Exxaro's Grootegeluk mine. Fuel for the plant will be supplied by Exxaro's prospective opencast greenfields Thabametsi mine on a surface conveyor belt. "The mine will supply up to 3.8-million tonnes per annum of run-of-mine coal to the power plant post ramp-up," Exxaro said in a statement on Monday. It is expected that coal will be supplied to the plant for up to 25 years, as coal will continue to form a large part of...
(African Brains 07/18/13)
Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe says there is nothing more important than the responsibility of providing education to all children, with the aim of optimally developing their latent talents. Speaking at the launch of the National Education Collaboration Framework Trust (NECT), Motlanthe said interventions by the private sector have demonstrated that even those learners that attend poorly resourced schools can achieve excellent results if provided with the required support. “Like you, we believe that both the government and the non-governmental groupings have a common goal of improving the quality of education, but do not as yet share a common understanding of the roles that they expect of each other or have to play towards achieving this common goal,” Motlanthe said. NECT...
(AFP (eng) 07/18/13)
Lawyers for relatives of 34 miners gunned down by South African police nearly a year ago said Wednesday they had pulled out of an already-troubled investigation into the deaths. A legal charity represented by Nelson Mandela's former lawyer, George Bizos, became the fourth party to pull out of a commission set up to probe the killings, amid a row over the government's failure to cover legal fees. "Our clients have also instructed us to provisionally withdraw from participating in the commission," said a statement by the Legal Resource Centre where Bizos is based. Legal teams representing a labour union, arrested and injured workers, and another group of dead miners have already pulled out this week. Their move is an act...

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