Tag Archives: South Africa

EU €65M aid to South Africa region

The European Commission is providing €64.7 million in humanitarian aid for countries in the southern Africa region to help support people in need dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, extreme weather conditions such as persistent drought in the region and other crises.

The EU is helping to provide life-saving assistance to impoverished households suffering from crop and livestock losses due to drought. The aid package will also strengthen the preparation and response to the coronavirus pandemic for countries in the region. In parallel, the EU is helping communities better prepare for natural hazards and reduce their impact” Janez Lenarčič, Commissioner for Crisis Management, said.

Funding from this aid package will go for humanitarian projects in Angola (€3 million), Botswana (€1.95 million), Comoros (€500,000), Eswatini (€2.4 million), Lesotho (€4.8 million), Madagascar (€7.3 million), Malawi (€7.1 million), Mauritius (€250,000), Mozambique (€14.6 million), Namibia (€2 million), Zambia (€5 million) and Zimbabwe (€14.2 million). A further €1.6 million is allocated to regional disaster preparedness actions.

The funding targets are food assistance to vulnerable households and helping farmers in the affected areas restore their means of subsistence;
– coronavirus prevention and preparedness actions to support local health systems and facilitate access to health care, protective equipment, sanitation and hygiene;
-disaster preparedness projects that also cover new needs brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. They include strengthening early warning systems and evacuation plans for communities at risk of natural hazards to having emergency stocks of personal protective equipment;
– support for children’s education and providing training to teaching staff.
Given the serious deterioration of the security situation in Cabo Delgado in northern Mozambique, €5 million will support vulnerable people in the area.

The humanitarian aid assistance announced today comes on top of the more than €67 million allocated to the region in 2019 following the impact of the two cyclones, drought, and the economic and humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe.

The southern Africa region has had just one normal rainy season in the last five years, with the last quarter of 2019 being one of the ten driest since 1981 for most areas, causing largescale livestock losses and damaging harvests. In many places, the current growing season is exceptionally hot and dry, while in several other parts of the region, erratic rains risk undermining harvests in 2020. In some countries, this burden comes on top of already-crippling economic woes.

The coronavirus pandemic is likely to compound already significant humanitarian needs in the region.

Five killed in Johannesburg hostage situation

Five people were killed and hostages were being held at a church west of Johannesburg, South African police said on July 11, Saturday.

Police announced in a statement that they were alerted to a “hostage situation and shooting” in the early hours of the morning at the International Pentecost Holiness Church in Zuurbekom.

Thirty arrests were made and more than 25 firearms seized, police wrote on Twitter microblog, adding hostage negotiators were still at the scene.

Police did not explain the reason behind hostages situation.

Television station eNCA suggested there had been a leadership dispute at the church and cited a church official as saying roughly 200 people had been taken hostage.

COVID19: SA faces Lesotho unrest

South Africa will engage in talks to restore calm in Lesotho on April 20 after Prime Minister Thomas Thabane sent soldiers and armoured vehicles onto the streets of Maresu on April 18 to restore order against “rogue national elements”.

The latest upheaval follows Thabane’s decision to suspend parliament without consultation over the COVID-19 pandemic. Last month’s move was challenged in the constitutional court by coalition partners and couple of dozens of rivals within his own party.

The judges ruled against Thabane’s decision on April 17, calling it “irrational”, paving the way for a vote of no-confidence against Thabane once parliament reconvenes.

A parliamentary caucus meeting scheduled on April 19 by the ruling All Basotho Convention (ABC) was postponed because of the visit by South African envoys, a senior Member of the Parliament said.

Internal divisions persist between Thabane loyalists and opponents. While no date has been set, Lesotho’s assembly is expected to meet as soon as this week.

“ABC is divided and we can no longer pretend,” said Lepota Sekola, adding that some members refused to honour Thabane’s call for the meeting as a show of dissatisfaction.

Lesotho supplies residents and farmers in South Africa’s Gauteng region with vital water supplies and Africa’s most developed country has helped broker peace talks in its smaller neighbour during previous bouts of political instability.

The South African envoys, who were urgently dispatched to help defuse weeks of political tension in the mountain kingdom of 2 million people, would continue talks for a second day on April 20, Thabane’s spokesman said.

Thabane, who is fighting for his political survival as he faces calls to quit and a possible criminal trial, said he had deployed the army in the capital to deal with forces he said wanted to destabilise Lesotho.

The Kingdom of Lesotho has lived thourgh a several coups since gaining independence from Britain in 1966. In 1998 more than 50 people and eight South African soldiers died and parts of Maseru were damaged during a political stand-off and following fighting.

Thabane, 80, had been scheduled to address the people of Lesotho at 1530 GMT on April 19 Sunday, but this was postponed until Monday, his spokesman Relebohile Moyeye said.

“We are not sure when the statement will be tomorrow because the PM is meeting the (South African) envoy again tomorrow at 8am,” Moyeye added.

South Africa wildlife threatened

A severe drought is threatening South Africa’s wildlife with game farmers keeping fewer animals and tourists visiting game lodges in smaller numbers, subsequently hitting he entire wildlife industry.

It’s been an extraordinary drought,” said WRSA chief Adri Kitshoff-Botha. “It’s not a one-year or two-year drought. In some areas we’ve seen it has been going now for six years.”

The wildlife industry generates revenue for South Africa through tourism, hunting, breeding and meat production. Trophy hunting alone generated 2 billion rand ($140 million) in 2016, according to research carried out for the environment ministry.

Southern Africa’s temperatures are rising at twice the global average rate, according to the International Panel on Climate Change, and in much of South Africa the level of water in reservoirs is reducing.

Buhari on S.Africa «embarrassment» 

President Muhammadu Buhari assessed the wave of deadly violence attacks against Nigerians and other foreign nationals in South Africa was an “embarrassment” to the African continent.

In September a wave of urban violence attacks in South Africa targeting foreigners at least 10 people died, dozens were injuries and hundreds arrests followed, triggering indignation at home and abroad.

https://twitter.com/bashirahmaad/status/1180187473063927813?s=21

The recent acts of xenophobic attacks on our compatriots and other Africans in South Africa are shocking to me, Nigerians and indeed Africa. It was an embarrassment to the continent,Buhari said in his address in a town hall meeting with Nigerians living in South Africa.

Meghan starring as «part-time féminist»

Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, danced with a group of mentors who teach vulnerable youngsters from townships to swim and surf. However the international attention was attracted to their visit to South Africa’s oldest mosque – Auwal Mosque in Bo-Kaap in Cape Town – on September 24, the second day of their Africa tour. Meghan Markle stepped out of the car wearing headscarf and floor-length dress, disguised in Prophet worshiper. The couple were met by Imam Sheikh Ismail Londt and Muslim community leader Mohamed Groenwald.

The royals visited the Waves for Change project, which grew from a small surfing club started in Masiphumelele township in 2009, and which is intended to help young people from violent communities to develop trust and confidence through sports and recreation at Monwabisi beach .

UK media has interpreted Meghan Markle debut in scarf as a sign of respect to Muslim worshipers, reminding of Princess Diana appearance in headscarf at the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Hospital in Lahore, Pakistan, in 1996. However they have completely omitted the evolution of the public perception of Islam of after 11/9.

The Muslim outfit of Meghan Markle in floor length dress and headscarf has also caused indignation of feminists, and all those who strive for gender equality in Muslim societies. Social media dubbed the Duchess as a “part-time feminist“, or “Royal feminist”.

https://twitter.com/bobbelvedere/status/1176548109205364737?s=21

Nine S.African top wine awarded

Nine of South Africa’s top wine and food tourism providers were named honourees in the inaugural Wine & Food Tourism Conference Awards at the close of this year’s Wine and Food Tourism Conference near Stellenbosch on September 18. They were presented with their trophies by Blacky Komani, chairperson of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa ().

The honourees are:

Service Excellence

  • Waterford Estate, Stellenbosch
  • Delaire Graff Estate, Stellenbosch
  • Leeu Collection, Franschhoek

The Authentic South African Experience

  • Grootbos Nature Reserve, Gansbaai, Overberg
  • La Motte, Franschhoek
  • Die Tuishuise & Victoria Manor, Cradock, Karoo

Innovation

  • Creation Wines, Hemel en Aarde, Overberg
  • Fryer’s Cove, Doringbaai, West Coast
  • Spice Route Destination, Paarl

The judges were:

Service Excellence

  • Horst Frehse, tourism and hospitality consultant
  • Gwynneth Matthews, conference specialist
  • André Morgenthal, wine marketing and communication consultant

The Authentic South African Experience

  • Judy Brower, Wine.co.za founder and owner
  • Janet Pillai, hospitality entrepreneur
  • Su Birch, wine marketing specialist

Innovation

  • Steve Massey, marketing thought leader
  • Mac Mabidilala, marketing specialist
  • Sheryl Ozinsky, co-founder of the Oranjezicht City Farm and tourism specialist.Drawn from Stellenbosch, Paarl, Franschhoek, the Overberg, the West Coast and the Karoo to include a mix of well-established favourites and hidden gems, they were chosen for having created outstanding and positively memorable tourist experiences that were an inspiration to others in the industry.

    https://twitter.com/waterfordestate/status/1174971569199697921?s=20

Buhari to visit S.Africa amid crisis

Nigerian high commissioner is recalled and a special envoy will be send to South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to address recent xenophobic attacks during urban violence outbreaks, said Information Minister Lai Mohammed at a press briefing in Abuja.

South Africa has already temporarily closed its diplomatic missions to Nigeria in Lagos and Abuja fearing reprisal attacks against its citizens, according to CNN.

The closures follow outbreaks of violence earlier this week in South Africa. At least five people were killed and 189 arrested during xenophobic attacks and looting in Johannesburg, Pretoria and elsewhere. Foreign nationals from countries including NigeriaZambia, Kenya, Ethiopia were targeted.

In spite of the violence outbreak South African President Cyril Ramaphosa reaffirmed the bilateral relations  as “firm and strong” and added that the two partners  were resolute in their shared commitment to build an Africa at peace with itself and others.

The statement came amid the deteriorating diplomatic relations between the two African countries, after Nigeria introduced plans to evacuate its nationals in South Africa following a wave of xenophobic attacks.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is expected to visit South Africa in next month to “reinforce strong bonds”, following the attacks against West Africans.

 

“Roadkill”: lions use tourists as cover

Tourists were startled when a lion attacked an antelope kudu in the middle of the road in the Kruger National Park, South Africa.

According to animal behaviorists, predators have been adapting to co-habitation with tourists, making best out of in, namely using cars as a cover for hunting of antelopes.

This is an advanced type of hunting, when for a few kilometers lions accompany convoys of vehicles with visitors, carefully observing the sides of the road. Due to noise of engines and smell of gases, antelopes do not feel the predators that hide among cars.

Visitors of the Kruger Park recorded such “car cover” hunting before, however this one was exceptionally spectacular due to size of the antelope, and pertinence of the lion.

Lions are the only social feline, who practice next to regular hunting a complex ambush hunting in a team, distributing tasks. Lions do a whole lot of more feline interactions in their lives than the loner tigers, and other big cats. They also practice school of hunting for young lions, teaching them skills and tricks.

The scientists claim that the part of the lion’s brain for memory is the most developed among felines and intelligence is related to memory.

The result of the 2016 animal intelligence test confirmed the greatest abilities of social animals to resolve problems. In this test social animals came first The hyena came as a champion on the top of the list, then the lion, the leopard followed, and the loner tiger with the biggest brain volume came the last.

Portugal & Greece welcome South Africans

The perspective of expropriation of land without compensation, widely known as “land grabs” stimulates South Africans to search for new secure home, where they can construct their future, and future of their families. (Image above: Lisbon, Portugal).

This newly created South African interest meets the offer of residence-by-investment programmes promoted by Greece and Portugal, opening a potential path to full citizenship for the investors, which also means an opportunity to work and live in the European Union.

Portugal remains the top destination of choice, with the Henley & Partners South Africa office registering a 78% increase in investment in the Portugal Golden Residence Permit Program since July 2018.

The firm said it has also seen a ‘never-before-seen uptake’ in the Greece Golden Visa Program.

Recently Global citizenship company Henley & Partners has seen a significant increase in the number of South Africans inquiring about golden residence and visa programmes.

Henley & Partners South Africa is seeing a significant increase in interest in these two residence programs, which should be understood in the context of both their relative affordability for South Africans and broader international geopolitical unrest,” said Amanda Smit, managing partner of Henley & Partners South Africa.

In addition to  the EU members Portugal and Greece, Henley & Partners has previously said that it has seen interest in Malta, which is especially attractive for its official English language.

“On the other hand, residence- and citizenship-by-investment programs permit access to a significantly expanded suite of opportunities for travel, investment, and influence,Smit said. “The latest data show that the attractive contribution amounts of the Portugal and Greece residence-by-investment programs (requiring a minimum property investment of EUR 350,000 and EUR 250,000, respectively), combined with the tumultuous state of global and domestic politics, are causing many wealthy South Africans to understand this value proposition intimately.

 

 

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