Daily Archives: November 10, 2015

Western Cape Government on water situation

The Western Cape government is monitoring the water situation across the province on a daily basis.

“The system is under pressure and will come under additional pressure over the December holiday season when there will be an influx of visitors to the coastal areas across the Western Cape,” says Anton Bredell, the minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning in the Western Cape.

Bredell says the present levels of dams across the Western Cape that supply water for domestic use are still in a good state, with only some minor risks of failure.

“My Department, in full collaboration with the Department of Water and Sanitation, is continuously monitoring the situation closely to ensure any necessary restrictions get imposed in time to avert a potential crisis that may come up. In the Western Cape we believe preparedness is key to addressing any potential crisis,” says Bredell.

The Western Cape Disaster Management Centre (WCDMC) is currently hard at work updating its preparedness plans in the event of an escalation with regards to water challenges in the Western Cape.

Colin Deiner, head of the WCDMC, says municipalities in the Western Cape have pre-approved water restrictions, approved by council. “These haven’t been implemented to date but may be considered if necessary as we enter the dry summer months ahead.”

Bredell says municipalities may also consider implementing step up tariffs for high water use.

“Consumers of a lot of water may start paying more on an escalating scale depending on the volume of usage. This may become a necessity to drive water savings.

Bredell has repeated his call on the public to use water wisely.A few tips on water usage:

Re-use your bath/shower water by watering the garden.

Close the tap when brushing your teeth or washing your hands (this can save up to 20 litres of water).

Take shorter showers. A five minute shower uses around 70l of water. A bath can use up to 160l.

Don’t rinse glasses and cutlery under running water.

A dripping tap (one drop per second) could waste up to 30 litres of water an hour, which adds up to 10 000 litres a year.


James-Brent Styan

Spokesperson for the Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell

Cell: 084 583 1670

Tel: 021 483 2820

E-mail: James-Brent.Styan@westerncape.gov.za


Environmental Affairs on Working on Fire programme

“This Programme has the capacity to provide many more jobs necessitating the need for a higher budget. There is a major need for fire management capacity from Working on Fire (WoF) for both using fire for ecosystem management and combatting wild fires,” said Minister Molewa.

This is a very important program that is intended to firstly ensure that our Biodiversity and Ecosystems are protected; Secondly to contribute to socio-economic growth through such Flora and Fauna and also to create job opportunities.

The Working on Fire Programme was launched in 2003 as part of government’s drive to create jobs and alleviate poverty. It is one of several departmental programmes under implementation through government’s Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).

The EPWP has been the primary vehicle through which the Department of Environmental Affairs has delivered on its job creation mandate.

Today more than 5 000 young men and women are employed through the programme. They are recruited from marginalized communities and trained in fire awareness and education, prevention and fire suppression skills. They are trained as veld and forest fire fighters and are stationed in more than 200 teams throughout South Africa.

Statistics show that the Department of Environmental Affairs’ Working on Fire programme is undoubtedly, one of the country’s most important and valuable programmes.

Minister Molewa has also revealed that, in line with the National Development Plan, targets for job opportunities in the programme include some of the following future plans:

Training opportunities for all, especially for those who are from disadvantaged communities on an on-going basis in diversified life skills.

Skilling the beneficiaries in the rare leadership skills, such as, how to manage veld fires and other management capacity programmes.

An objective to sign as many partners as possible in order to offer diversified services and products within the industry, leading to beneficiaries being multi-skilled in order to provide them with a wide scope in the job market. Finally the alignment of all WoF training to South African Qualifications Authority Accreditation so that the beneficiaries are able to compete fairly in the job market once exited from the programme.

The number of job opportunities created through the Programme have been steadily increasing since the inception of WoF. Job opportunities created for the youth and women in the year 2013, through the programme resulted in a total of 1 210 African women employed and the highest age bracket of youth employed was 26-35 years, which is a total of 51% in that age group. 2014 saw a slight decline of 1125 African women being employed and an increase in the age group 18-25 of which 42% of youth were employed. In 2015, 1 582 females were employed and 51% youth in the age group 26-35.

The total expenditure for the Working on Fire programme for the 2012/13, 2013/14 and 2014/15 financial years was as follows:

R404 205 524,

R405 540 125 and

R508 222 000 respectively.

Furthermore a total of 592 Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) compliant suppliers have benefited from the programme between 2013 and 2015, to the value of R395 144 169.00

For media queries contact:

Albi Modise

Cell: 083 490 2871


Health calls for application for appointment to the Expert Review Committee for the Primary Health Care Level Essential Medicines List

Hereby, the National Department of Health calls for applications from suitably qualified doctors, pharmacists, nurses and other health professionals for appointment to the Expert Review Committee for the Primary Health Care Level Essential Medicines List. The Committee is a standing subcommittee of the National Essential Medicines List Committee (NEMLC) appointed by the Minister of Health for a period of three years. It is a non-statutory advisory Committee that will operate in accordance with its Terms of Reference.

The Committee’s primary objective will be to review the list of essential medicines for the Primary Health Care level. The selection of medicines for inclusion on the essential medicines list is based on consideration of safety, efficacy, effectiveness and affordability.

South African citizens, or permanent residents are eligible for appointment if they have suitable knowledge, skills, expertise and work experience in at least one of the following areas (refer to the Essential Drugs Programme Committee Application Form for further details):

Evidence based medicine

Clinical practice guideline development

Rational medicines use

Public health

Health economics


Medicine safety

Clinical trials

Pharmaceutical and Therapeutics Committee

Preference will be given to applicants with extensive public sector experience. In order to appoint a balanced Committee with the necessary skills and expertise, consideration will also be given to private sector applicants.

Appointed members would be expected to:

Agree to comply with the code of practice pertaining to the declaration of interest and confidentiality policies.

Act in accordance with the highest professional and ethical standard at all times.

Avail themselves for meetings, punctually and for the whole of the scheduled meeting time.

Contribute to debates in an informed and rational way.

Take decisions solely in the interest of the public.

Respect and value each member’s perspective and contribution.

Facilitate the work of the Committee through the co-ordination of peer reviewed technical appraisals.

The National Department of Health reserves the right to verify details submitted and; to subject candidates to the necessary security clearance. Correspondence will be limited to selected candidates only. No late applications will be accepted. The final selection of members will be made by the National Department of Health.

Interested persons are requested to complete and submit the Essential Drugs Programme Committee Application and Declaration of Interest forms by e-mail to:

Dr Janine Jugathpal

Tel: 012 395 8449

E-mail: Munsaj@health.gov.za

It would be appreciated if applications can be received by 7 December 2015.


President Jacob Zuma to attend the 40th Angolan Independence Anniversary

At the invitation of H. E. Mr José Eduardo Dos Santos, President of the Republic of Angola, H.E. Mr Jacob Zuma, President of the Republic of South Africa will on 11th November 2015 undertake a working visit to Angola to attend the 40th Anniversary of the Independence of Angola.

President Zuma’s visit is not only aimed at joining the people of Angola as they celebrate their 40th Anniversary of Independence, but also and most importantly his visit seeks to re-affirm the historical and fraternal relations that exist between South Africa and Angola. The relations between the two counties were cemented during the years of liberation struggle against colonialism and Apartheid when Angola played a significant role in support of the fight against apartheid.

Because of this history, South Africa and Angola enjoy solid political, economic and social cooperation as expressed through a Joint Permanent Commission of Cooperation (JCC). There is a growing and noticeable economic cooperation between the two countries as evidenced by an increasing number of South African companies that have invested in the Angolan economy. Of significance is the growing trade cooperation. For example, in 2014 South African imports from Angola amounted to R21, 8 billion while exported goods worth about R2, 2 billion.

Furthermore, South Africa, Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo have established a a unique Tripartite Mechanism on Dialogue and Cooperation between them which is aimed at helping the DRC to consolidate peace and stability and thus foster regional stability and development.

President Zuma will be accompanied by the Minister of Telecommunications and Postal Services, Dr Siyabonga Cwele.

SA Companies Happy With Mission to Cuba

A group of South African businesspeople who arrived in the country from Cuba have expressed their satisfaction with their mission to the Caribbean island and are optimistic of tangible results in the near future. The group, which comprises of exporters who exhibited their products in the annual Havana International Trade Fair, and investors who participated in the first investment mission to Cuba to be organised by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) has been in Cuba since October 31.

Mr Cameron McGregor of PGBI Engineers and Constructors said the mission was a great success from his company’s perspective due to the productive meetings he held in Cuba.

“Two separate meetings that I held with delegations from the Foreign Investment Division of the Cuban sugar group, AZCUBA, and their engineering division resulted in us signing a letter of intent to move the discussions forward and determine how best we can work together on one of the 19 cogeneration projects planned for the country’s sugar industry. The identified project is a 60MW cogeneration plant estimated at US$90 million,” says McGregor who was part of the investment mission.

Mr Felix Tjaone of Bradbri, a capital equipment company says he is happy to return from Cuba with a proposal for his company to set up an engineering facility in Havana and manufacture components for the sugar, mining and automotive industries.

“The Cubans are planning to rehabilitate their engineering plant which contains old machinery and they would like us to bring new technology and equipment to upgrade it. They have embarked on an economic path aimed at boosting their industrialisation and increasing their manufacturing and export capacities. More follow-up discussions still have to take place but we are optimistic that we will strike a deal and set up a joint-venture in the near future and establish our presence in Cuba,” said Tjaone.

The mission to Cuba also lived up to the expectations of Mr Kennedy Morolong from Acumen, a software development and business consulting firm.

“I had two good meetings that I am confident will result in tangible deals after further engagements. A software marketing company representing a number of software development companies in Cuba expressed keen interest in partnering with us. They will translate our software applications into Spanish and distribute our software products in the Caribbean countries and beyond,” says Morolong, who also got an opportunity to present his tourism software solutions for grading of hotels to the Cuban ministry of tourism.

Mr Peter Wehrly of Matrix Yachts could not contain his excitement for returning home with an order of two boats worth more than R28 million from a big international tourism company based in Havana but operating in various parts of the world.

“We had been working on the deal for some time and we are happy that we finally clinched it. However, there is still lot of work ahead in terms of raising funds to finance the deal. It has been a struggle in the past when we negotiated the deal but we are hoping that the SA government will come on board and assist us as it has reiterated its commitment to assist SA businesses do business in Cuba and increase trade and investment between the two countries,” said Wehrly adding that the Cuban company planned to order two boats per year from Matrix Yachts until 2020 and three per year thereafter.

For Mr Stuart Quenipel of Rock Solid Industries, the meeting he had with a South African company based in Panama will probably see his canopies, which he manufactures in Durban, finding their way to the Caribbean and South America regions.

Mr Fedisang Shabalala from Shaweni Consulting Engineers hopes the brief interaction he had with officials from the Cuban ministry of construction will enable his company to be part of the project of designing and construction of golf courses the officials indicated was due for implementation. He also met with representatives of the agency for Cuban engineering professionals and discussed the possibility of an exchange programme in which engineers from his company will be sent to Cuba and vice versa.