Category Archives: South Africa

Ramaphosa declares “era of unity”

President  of African National Congress (ANC)  Cyril Ramaphosa has described ruling party as the parliament of the people of South Africa, saying ANC leaders will ensure they safeguard and nurture the heritage given to them by their forebears.

“As we take the ANC into an era of unity, an era of renewal, an era of service to the people of our country. We take this opportunity to reaffirm the ANC’s commitment to the values and the principles to which so many of our legends dedicated their love.”

“South Africa is open for investment,” he told tens of thousands of cheering ANC members in a stadium in the Eastern Cape province on Saturday. Through foreign investment “we can grow our economy, create jobs, end poverty,” Ramaphosa ensured.

Ramaphosa (65) a former trade union leader and one of the country’s wealthiest businessmen with personal fortune of USD450 (Forbes) pledged during his campaign for ANC leader to address record unemployment and a sluggish economy. South Africa’s unemployment rate came in at 27.7 percent in the third quarter of 2017, the same as in the previous two quarters and remaining the highest rate in 13 years. The number of unemployed rose to 6.21 million. (Image below: social networks #Soweto slums).

Soweto slums

 

 

Kenyatta visits South Africa

President Uhuru Kenyatta will on January, 11 make an official visit to South Africa in his first foreign trip since he was sworn-in for a second term.

According to State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu, President Kenyatta will hold talks with his counterpart Jacob Zuma, in the Indian Ocean city of Durban centered on bilateral and pan-African issues.

Manoah Esipisu added, the  leaders will be discussing possibilities of enhancing the existing cooperation in trade, security, and in developing of infrastructures.

 

 

Angola opts for austerity

Angola’s President Joao Lourenco (pictured) said on Monday, January 8, that there could be no economic recovery without austerity measures, ruling out salary increases for civil servants at this point in time.

“When the economy is a little better, it’s only right that it should move the national salary, but now it would not be very advisable,” Lourenco told reporters at a media event to mark 100 days in office. Lourenco took over last year from José Eduardo dos Santos, who stood down after 38 years.

Angola’s central bank will hold an auction on January, 9 to sell foreign currency to commercial banks, its first since saying it will abandon a dollar peg, according to three people familiar with knowledge of the matter.

 The kwanza will probably be allowed to depreciate at the auction as the central bank shifts to a trading band, the people said, asking not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak publicly on the matter. About $100 million of foreign currency will be offered at the auction, according to Bloomberg sources.

 

Growing rift in ANC over Zuma’ future

The new leader of South Africa’s African National Congress (ANC) Cyril Ramaphosa called for unity on amid increasingly polarised opinion over  President Jacob Zuma future.

There is widespread speculation that Ramaphosa and his allies are encouraging ANC members to oust Zuma as head of state without further delay.  However, publicly Ramaphosa as deputy president,  positions  himself as Zuma ally.

Markets have rallied since Ramaphosa narrowly defeated Zuma’s ex-wife Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in an ANC leadership contest the end of 2017 as investors believe he will tackle rampant political corruption and implement economic reforms.

Zuma’s term doesn’t officially end until 2019 when national elections will be held but he could be removed early through a motion of no confidence in parliament or at meeting of the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC). The NEC will meet this week.

 

 

SA: Listeria victims death toll at rise

The death toll from an outbreak of listeria in South Africa has jumped beyond 60 in the past month, health authorities said, adding they had closed a poultry abattoir where the bug that causes the disease had been detected.

Since monitoring of the outbreak began last January, 720 laboratory-confirmed cases of food poisoning due to the disease, also known as listeriosis, have been reported, the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) said.

That was up from 557 in December, since when recorded deaths had risen to 61 from 36.

A food microbiologist said the “alarming” outbreak appeared to be the biggest ever recorded and could spread further if it was not tackled urgently.

 

Rustenberg Chardonnay a gem of Stellenbosch

Rustenberg is a well-known producer of high quality Chardonnays and the Stellenbosch Chardonnay embodies the house style.

A traditionally made, barrel fermented Chardonnay, the Rustenberg Stellenbosch Chardonnay is a combination of complexing factors from the vineyard, wild yeast and careful barrel age, aiming for balance and expression in each vintage.

 

South Africa charis BRICS

South Africa stepping in to chair the BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa – from  January 1, 2018.  The decision has been taken at recent summit of members of BRICS association in Xiamen, China, in September 2017.

Vice President of BRICS New Development Bank, Leslie Maasdorp, said to Russian TASS news agency, that the South African government has not submitted the objectives and agenda of its chairmanship.

However one can presume the priorities of South Africa’s policy following its record of co-operation with the BRICS partners, formally shaping their agenda at the joint events in 2018, guided by the President Jacob Zuma’s speech at a special session of the BRICS Business Council held in September 2017 during the 9th summit in Xiamen.

Efforts to promote economic development and growth, increase trade volumes and attract investment to the industrial sector of South Africa’s economy are identified as the key objectives for the country’s participation in this format at that time. There are also expectations of investment in industry, following government’s plans support the creation of new jobs, poverty reduction.

 

 

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