Sunday 25 February 2018
(Sunday Times 04/25/13)
While the disease still kills 660 000 people worldwide each year, many of these being children under the age of five in sub-Saharan Africa, the Department of Health's malaria prevention programme has been a huge success, earning the country the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA) award for excellence in the fight against malaria earlier this year. The programme provides guidance for the use of appropriate medication to prevent malaria infection, as well as non-drug measures such as the use of indoor insecticide. The World Health Organisation's World Malaria reports stated in December 2012 that South Africa is one of only eight countries in Africa to have reduced malaria transmission by over 75%. April 25 is World Malaria Day. Cipla Medpro's...
(Allafrica 04/24/13)
Pretoria — The Department of Basic Education has reiterated that learning and teaching must proceed today as it is a normal work and school day. Department spokesperson Panyaza Lesufi said the department has noted with concern the industrial action to be undertaken today by the South African Democratic Teachers’ Union. The department warned that it has activated its systems to enforce the principle of no work, no pay. “Principals that do not monitor and register the attendance of teachers will be subjected to disciplinary procedures and educators that sign the register as being present at school but later leave to join protest action will be subjected to disciplinary procedures. “The department wishes to reaffirm the point that it is permissible...
(The Associated Press 04/24/13)
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A South African foundation says retired archbishop Desmond Tutu has checked into a Cape Town hospital for treatment of a persistent infection. The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation said the Nobel Peace Prize laureate will undergo tests to discover the cause of the infection. The foundation says 81-year-old Tutu spent Wednesday morning in his office before going to the hospital and was in good spirits. It says the non-surgical treatment is expected to take five days. Tutu was a vigorous campaigner against the system of white racist rule known as apartheid, which ended when democratic elections were held in 1994.
(Reuters (Eng) 04/23/13)
CAPE TOWN — South Africa plans to overhaul its intellectual property laws to improve access to cheaper medicines by making it harder for pharmaceutical firms to register and roll-over patents for drugs, a senior official said on Monday. Central to the reforms is closing a loophole known as "ever-greening," whereby drug companies slightly modify an existing drug whose patent is about to expire and then claim it is a new drug, thereby extending its patent protection and their profits. If approved by parliament, the changes should mean cheaper medication for cancer and HIV/AIDS in South Africa, which has one of the world's highest HIV infection rates. "We have a policy position that says, 'Let us have a strong system that...
(BBC News Africa 04/23/13)
A film installation celebrating Nelson Mandela is taking over the electronic billboards in New York's Times Square. The short presentation was commissioned by the Tribeca Film Institute, the arts organisation co-founded by Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro. Inspirational quotes will played across many of Times Square's screens this month to celebrate the anti-apartheid leader's 95th birthday in July. Mandela's grandson Ndaba said it would "remind us of our humanity". He added that his grandfather approved of The Power of Words installation. "If he doesn't support something, he'll let you know," he told Reuters at the launch. The 30-year-old worked with his cousin Kweku and filmmakers Nabil Elderkin, Andrew van der Westhuyzen and Gregory Stern to choose quotes from Mr Mandela's...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/22/13)
African finance ministers told their rich nation counterparts at weekend meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank to work harder and faster to kick-start their economies to avoid a prolonged slump that could undermine strong growth in the developing world. "We are concerned," Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala said at the meetings of global finance leaders. "If we continue to see slow growth in the euro zone, which provides a large market for many African countries, and is coupled with a slowdown in emerging economies, then we will become more vulnerable," Okonjo-Iweala told a news conference of African finance ministers. "We need to insist that our partners in other parts of the world work harder and faster." Despite...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/22/13)
A film installation celebrating the words of Nelson Mandela, the former South African president, is taking over many of the electronic billboards of New York's Times Square for a few minutes every night for the month of April. The short film was commissioned by the Tribeca Film Institute, an arts organization co-founded by actor Robert De Niro. It is being played shortly before midnight across many of Times Square's glowing screens for the rest of the month. "We're in the crossroads of the world, it's all about the glitz and the glamour, and all of a sudden you're seeing this man to remind us of our humanity," Ndaba Mandela, a 30-year-old grandson of the anti-apartheid leader, said at a special...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/19/13)
South Africa has lashed out at the United States and European Union for imposing oil sanctions on Iran over its nuclear energy program without first consulting major importers of the Iranian energy supplies. South Africa’s Energy Minister Elizabeth Dipuo Peters, who is in India to attend the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) meeting, said that such decisions have geopolitical implications and mostly affect “the poorest of the poor” that are in dire need of energy supplies and have no alternative. “When decisions are made at bilateral or unilateral levels that have serious geopolitical consequences, we need to engage seriously,” Peters said. “When we had to look for crude of the kind we got from Iran, it came at a premium,” she...
(The Associated Press 04/19/13)
The family of Nelson Mandela sought on Thursday to present a united front in a dispute with longtime associates of the former South African president over control of two companies. In a statement, all but one of Mandela's grandchildren said the associates, including lawyer George Bizos and Tokyo Sexwale, a businessman and Cabinet minister, have tried to portray the Mandela family as "insensitive money-grabbers" with no respect for the legacy of the anti-apartheid leader and Nobel Peace Prize laureate. "Most of us are gainfully employed, work for our own companies and run our own projects," said the statement, which did not identify any of the grandchildren by name. Mandela has 17 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren, according to the Nelson Mandela...
(BBC News Africa 04/19/13)
The 25.5-carat stone was recovered by Petra Diamonds at its Cullinan mine and is expected to bring large profits. Experts say it could be worth more than $10m (£6m), and the find gave a boost to Petra's share price. Similar finds in recent years from the Cullinan mine have commanded high prices and Petra, with operations in Botswana and Tanzania, is expecting a high level of interest from buyers. "It's very unusual for a diamond of this quality and size to come to market," said company spokeswoman Cathy Malins. The mine, north-east of Pretoria, has produced hundreds of large stones and is famed for its production of blue diamonds. A similar 26.6-carat blue rough diamond discovered by the company in...
(BBC News Africa 04/18/13)
South Africa's annual inflation rate was 5.9% in March, unchanged on the previous month's figure but still much higher than the country's growth rate. The official figure, from Statistics South Africa, is at the top of the central bank's target range of 3-6%. South Africa is the continent's largest economy, but despite impressive growth in recent years expansion is slowing. The central bank governor said this week she was worried about the prospect of stagflation. Stagflation describes a state of high inflation and low economic growth. Problems South African's gross domestic product is expected to grow by 2.8% this year, held back by weakness in the eurozone, which is an important export market for the country. While that rate is...
(Xinhuanet 04/16/13)
The cash strapped Zimbabwean government has extended its appeal for election funding to South Africa and Angola, other than the United Nations. The poll budget has been reduced from 132 million U.S. dollars to 100 million U.S. dollars following the acquisition of some of the required vehicles and equipment ahead of the March 16 constitutional referendum. Minister of Finance Tendai Biti told journalists on Monday that the government had appealed to fellow southern African countries for funding since it did not have the capacity to finance the elections. Zimbabwe is expected to conduct harmonized presidential, legislative and local government elections soon, following the passing of a new constitution which now awaits parliamentary endorsement and presidential assent. Biti and Justice and...
(Voice of America 04/16/13)
HARARE, ZIMBABWE — Zimbabwe's government has failed to raise money for elections, but South Africa has approved $100 million in funding which will be used to pay for the polls, Finance Minister Tendai Biti told journalists. However, he said South Africa has approved $100 million in budgetary support to Harare, which will be used to pay for the polls. “We are already under pressure, being stifled, being suffocated with fiscal pressures," Biti said. "I'm aware the South African cabinet has made a decision on the budgetary assistance and a positive one. What is outstanding is a question of implementation." Zimbabwe is expected to hold elections by October of this year to replace a fragile four-year-old coalition government which unites the...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/15/13)
Sub-Saharan Africa's economic growth should accelerate to more than 5 percent over the next three years, far outpacing the global average, but the region must do more to convert this into reducing poverty, the World Bank said on Monday. In its latest Africa's Pulse analysis of prospects for the region, the bank saw increased investment, high commodity prices and a pick-up in the global economy driving this expected growth surge in the world's poorest continent. It said foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows to Sub-Saharan Africa were projected to increase to record levels each year over the next three years, reaching $54 billion by 2015. This compared to $37.7 billion in 2012, a 5.5 percent increase in a year when FDI...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/15/13)
South Africa has approved $100 million in budgetary support to cash-strapped Zimbabwe, helping plug a gap in its finances ahead of elections expected in the second half of the year, Finance Minister Tendai Biti said on Monday. Zimbabwe's economy has been on the mend since President Robert Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai agreed to share power after disputed 2008 elections but is still suffering a hangover from a decade-long recession widely blamed on Mugabe. Last year, Biti said Harare had approached regional economic giant South Africa and oil-rich Angola for $150 million amid a lack of aid from Western donors who have imposed sanctions on Mugabe and his inner circle over charges of human rights abuses. "Pursuant to discussions...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/10/13)
Carlyle Group (CG.O) is looking at a number of banks in east and west Africa for a potential investment, its Africa co-head said on Wednesday, as the U.S. private equity firm focuses on the continent's growing consumer market. Carlyle, which last year invested in a pan-African grain trading firm, has recently signed a second deal, Marlon Chigwende also told the Reuters Africa Investment Summit. "Banking is very interesting today, and that is the general statement across a lot of sub-Saharan Africa," Chigwende told the Reuters Africa Investment Summit in Johannesburg. "Certainly, there are several opportunities of fast-growing banks, good management teams, interesting market positioning." Although private equity is still at a nascent stage in Africa, investor interest in the fast-growing...
( 04/10/13)
JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s Exxaro expects to start mining iron ore in the Republic of Congo this year, with an eye to producing up to 10 million tonnes a year, as the miner diversifies beyond its traditional reliance on coal. Exxaro’s chief executive Sipho Nkosi told the Reuters Africa Investment Summit he was optimistic it would soon get a permit to begin production at the Mayoko project. “We will get our mining convention and start mining this year,” he said. South Africa’s second largest coal producer acquired the project as part of its $313 million takeover of African Iron in an effort to diversify from coal, which has been hit by sharp drops in prices and demand. Exxaro plans to...
(BBC News Africa 04/09/13)
Did Margaret Thatcher play a role in helping to save Nelson Mandela's life? That is the remarkable claim made by one of the former South African president's closest friends, Ahmed Kathrada. "Her word did count - I'm sure of it," Mr Kathrada told me, on hearing of the death of Baroness Thatcher. Between 1963 and 1964, Nelson Mandela was a defendant at the Rivonia trial, accused of trying to overthrow the apartheid government. Mr Kathrada was one of nine other men in the dock with him. The death penalty was sought by prosecutors, but the judge sentenced them to life imprisonment. Mr Mandela eventually spent 27 years in prison. Mr Kathrada was released a few months earlier in October 1989...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/04/13)
Former South African president Nelson Mandela, 94, received a visit in hospital from current leader Jacob Zuma on Thursday, who said the anti-apartheid hero was making "continuous improvement" under treatment for pneumonia. "Madiba is stable and we are thankful that he is responding well to treatment and that he is much better," Zuma said, referring to Mandela by his clan name. Mandela has spent just over a week in hospital. This is the third health scare in four months for the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, who became South Africa's first black president in 1994 and was hailed as a global symbol of tolerance and harmony. He was in hospital briefly in early March for a check-up and was hospitalized in...
(Reuters (Eng) 04/03/13)
Anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela's condition has not changed after a weekend improvement, the South African government said on Tuesday, and it denied media reports suggesting the former president had suffered a relapse in his pneumonia. "His condition is unchanged as reported yesterday," presidency spokesman Mac Maharaj told Reuters. The government said on Monday there was "no significant change" in the condition of the 94-year-old Nobel Peace Prize laureate. Asked about an NBC News report saying Mandela was still suffering a fluid build-up in his lungs, Maharaj said: "It is unfortunate that there are reports circulating in some media which suggest a deterioration, which is not true." Mandela was admitted to hospital late on Wednesday for a recurrence of pneumonia. Doctors...

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