Daily Archives: May 13, 2016

Hausfeld Announces Class Action Certified for South African Gold Miners in Landmark Case

Marks first class action in South Africa for sick workers; seeks to hold dozens of gold mining companies accountable

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, May 13, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg has certified the first class action in South African history for sick workers, allowing gold miners suffering from silicosis and tuberculosis to proceed with their claims against 30 gold producers, including AngloGold Ashanti, Harmony Gold, Gold Fields, Anglo American, and African Rainbow Minerals. The miners are represented by South African Counsel Charles Abrahams, with the assistance of Hausfeld  in Washington DC. Abrahams and Hausfeld have been leaders in bringing litigation on behalf of South Africans in this case as well as in human rights and antitrust law.

The class action includes thousands of former and present gold mine workers suffering from silicosis or tuberculosis and the dependents of deceased miners who ultimately died after contracting the often fatal diseases. The defendants argued vehemently against inclusion of the tuberculosis class, but Abrahams and Hausfeld presented strong medical evidence to support their inclusion, which the court endorsed. Certifying the class means that the litigation can seek compensation for the miners as a group in a more efficient and streamlined manner than if the miners had to bring thousands of individual actions.

The case was heard before the High Court in Johannesburg, from October 12-23, 2015, where counsel argued that the 30 named South African gold mining companies that owned or operated 82 different gold mines from 1965 to the present, knew of the dangers posed to miners by silica dust for more than a century. The case alleges that the South African mining industry failed to protect miners from silica dust and failed to use worker safety procedures used in mining elsewhere in the world during the Apartheid years and up until recent times. Richard Lewis of Hausfeld said “the case seeks to bring justice and restitution to the victims of the epidemic of occupational lung disease among South African goldminers, one of the most tragic public health disasters in recent history.” The miners are predominantly from South Africa and several other surrounding countries historically known for supplying migratory labor to the mining industry.

“This decision by the High Court is a crucial step in the path to justice for potentially hundreds of thousands of mine workers and the families of deceased mine workers who contracted silicosis and tuberculosis due to their employment in poorly maintained working environments of the gold mining industry of South Africa,” said Charles Abrahams. “We continue to believe it is the only feasible method for sick gold mine workers to have access to justice.”

“The opinion explicitly and robustly recognizes that the class action legal tool is most needed and most appropriate when the poor and underprivileged seek justice against institutions in society they could never challenge on their own,” said Richard Lewis of Hausfeld.

Hausfeld attorneys working on this matter are Michael Hausfeld, Richard Lewis, Reena Gambhir, and Patrick Schultz.

About Hausfeld

Hausfeld is a leading global law firm with offices in Berlin, Brussels, London, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, DC. The firm has a broad range of complex litigation expertise, particularly in antitrust/competition, financial services, sports and entertainment, environmental, mass torts, consumer protection, and human rights matters, often with an international dimension. Hausfeld aims to achieve the best possible results for clients through its practical and commercial approach, avoiding litigation where feasible, yet litigating robustly when necessary. Hausfeld’s extensive experience with alternative and innovative fee models offers clients a diverse menu of engagement options and maximum flexibility in terms of managing their cost exposure. Hausfeld is the only claimant firm to be ranked by the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners as a top tier firm in private enforcement of antitrust/competition law in both the United States and the United Kingdom.

For more information about the firm, including recent trial victories and landmark settlements, please visit: www.hausfeld.com.

For further information please contact:

Deborah Schwartz
Media Relations
+1 240-355-8838

‘Ground Breaking’ Mobile Payments Ecosystem To Boost Financial Inclusion In South Africa

KIGALI, Rwanda, May 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM In keeping with the concept of ‘Connecting Africa’s Resources through Digital Transformation’ at today’s World Economic Forum on Africa event in Kigali, Rwanda, Patrick Ngabonziza the Chairman and Founder of MobiCash announced a game-changing approach to financial inclusion in Africa.

MobiCash and Boloro are launching their ‘ground breaking’ mobile payments ecosystem in the townships of South Africa with Big Save Group, one of the largest wholesalers operating within South African townships and servicing tens of thousands of small scale spaza shops.  The MobiCash cashless platform brings ease of access for banking services and electronic payments to the South African population at large. MobiCash’s partnership with Boloro, a fast-growing mobile payments network brand, allows small scale retail businesses to offer secure, consumer friendly, handset agnostic, merchant initiated payments using MobiCash multi-factor biometric authentication together with Boloro’s secure pin authentication that uses Network Initiated USSD messaging.  This ground-breaking project is a first of its kind in South Africa.

“We are proud to collaborate with our partners to bring a holistic ecosystem that not only has the potential to boost small business but also has the potential to impact entire communities as we have seen in our home country Rwanda,” said Patrick Ngabonziza.

Big Save is rolling out MobiCash & Boloro across its thousands of spaza community members, accelerating financial inclusion and financial interoperability to formerly disenfranchised businesses and communities.

“Our challenge has always been cash replacement in a cost-effective way, and I am happy to see that Boloro South Africa with MobiCash have been able to devise a financial model and present an ecosystem network that we will be rolling out across our entire spaza member community,” said Johnny Jardim, Financial Director of the Big Save Group, “which I believe will positively impact not only the small business owner and their family but also the community that they serve.”

Boloro’s retail acceptance application of MobiCash’s digital money is the first step in the strategy to boost financial inclusion. Other acceptance applications such as conveniently paying for taxi fares and secure online payments will boost the payments ecosystem even faster.

“Delivering financial dignity to every human being is a personal goal,” said Ann Camarillo, co-founder, President & CEO of Boloro Global, “and I believe, with our partners, we can democratize financial access for disenfranchised communities, offer secure payments and resolve the pain-points associated with carrying cash.”

First roll-outs are expected this quarter with aggressive plans to ramp-up reach and impact over the next several months as more stakeholders join the ecosystem to offer financial services for the population at large.

About MobiCash

MobiCash, headquartered in Hong Kong, is a cashless financial platform committed to bringing innovation, convenience and easy access to banking and payment services to everyone. This includes those not served by financial institutions regardless of their financial situation; thus, deepening the financial sector.

MobiCash has made tremendous effort in the financial digital space through offering its robust and dynamic mobile banking platform in 13 African countries including Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, Kenya, Ghana, Tanzania, Cameroon, DRC, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana and South Africa. The MobiCash mobile banking platform is engineered and developed to harness and sustain the various economic elements that play a role in the supply chain delivery within key sectors such as education, agriculture, retail and commerce, travel and tourism, construction as well as fiscus focused solutions for tax collections.

MobiCash solution uses multi-factor authentication mechanisms such as; fingerprint, Near Field Communication (NFC) Cards and Voice biometric technology prior to authorizing any funds transfer. For more information, visit www.mobicashonline.com

About Boloro:

Boloro is a next-generation mobile payments network offering consumers the ability to securely pay for goods and services using any kind of mobile phone and any source of funds. Boloro replaces cash and offers financial services to the many unbanked in emerging markets thus accelerating financial inclusion and access. Boloro delivers financial dignity to the population at large.

Boloro South Africa is headquartered in Centurion, Gauteng and is extending the reach of consumer friendly mobile payments services in larger cities, townships and rural communities and onto the continent of Africa.

Boloro Global Limited is headquartered in New York City, Boloro operates in South Asia, Middle East and Africa and soon launching in Latin America, Caribbean and East Asia. For more information, visit www.boloro.com.

Media Contacts:

Donald Mudenge         Brian Mather
donaldm@mobicash.co.za brian.mather@boloro.com

SkyPower Enters into Agreement with BYD to Submit Joint Bid for 750 MW of Solar Energy Development in India

VANCOUVER, May 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — SkyPower is pleased to announce it has entered into an agreement with BYD to submit a joint bid in the upcoming tenders for solar power generation capacity and energy storage of up to 750 MW in India.

The agreement was signed during the opening ceremony of the China-Canada Economic and Trade Cooperation Conference in the presence of Hu Chunhua, Party Secretary of China’s Guangdong Province. The conference, hosted by British Colombia Premier Christy Clarke, was aimed at strengthening the socio-cultural and economic ties between China and Canada.

“SkyPower, an industry leader in the development of large-scale solar energy projects, is excited to work with BYD, a global leader in battery technology, to bring together a highly-competitive bid for low-carbon, clean technology solutions,” said Charles Cohen, SkyPower’s Chief Commercial Officer, Commercial Strategy and Development.

The joint venture will draw upon SkyPower’s vast global experience and its proprietary development platform to develop clean energy solutions in India at truly market-competitive rates, while ensuring the highest quality construction and world-class execution. BYD’s award-winning environmentally-friendly battery storage technology, in concert with SkyPower’s wealth of experience in developing utility-scale solar projects, will enable a significant solar implementation strategy in India.

BYD is headquartered in Guangdong, China’s most populated province, accounting for more than twenty-five percent of China’s foreign trade. “We are thrilled to join forces with like-minded visionary leaders at SkyPower,” stated Stella Li, Senior Corporate Vice President of BYD. “BYD is the global leader in reliable, efficient battery storage and solar technology, and we are committed to providing affordable, sustainable energy solutions that not only help countries recover economically but also help reduce air pollution caused by traditional, dirty fossil fuels.”

The Government of Guangdong continues to invest in clean energy mass transit solutions to help address the environmental objectives of China’s 13th Five-Year Plan.

About SkyPower

SkyPower is the largest and one of the most successful developers and owners of utility-scale solar energy projects in the world. With roots dating back more than a dozen years, SkyPower’s global team possesses a vast track record of over 900 years of combined experience in power and large infrastructure projects.

The experienced and accomplished SkyPower team has built, assembled and acquired an extensive pipeline of over 25 GW worldwide – 9 GW of which were recently announced in bilateral agreements, and other contract awards, to be built in the Middle East, Africa and Southeast Asia over the next five years.

SkyPower’s over 30 utility-scale solar Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) and Contracts in aggregate represent well in excess of approximately US $80 billion worth of long-term renewable energy sales to leading utilities and governments around the world.

SkyPower is majority owned by CIM Group, a U.S.-based real estate and infrastructure investment firm founded in 1994 that has systematically and successfully invested in dynamic and densely populated communities throughout North America.

About BYD

BYD Company Ltd. is one of China’s largest companies and has successfully expanded globally. Specializing in battery technologies, their green mission to “solve the whole problem” has made them industry pioneers and leaders in several High-tech sectors including High-efficiency Automobiles, Electrified Public Transportation, Environmentally-Friendly Energy Storage, Affordable Solar Power and Information Technology and Original Design Manufacturing (ODM) services.

As the world’s largest manufacturer of rechargeable batteries, their mission to create safer and more environmentally friendly battery technologies has led to the development of the BYD Iron Phosphate (or “Fe”) Battery. This fire-safe, completely recyclable and incredibly long-cycle technology has become the core of their clean energy platform that has expanded into automobiles, buses, trucks, utility vehicles and energy storage facilities. BYD and all of their shareholders, including the great American Investor Warren Buffett, see these environmentally and economically forward products as the way of the future.

BYD has made a strong entrance to the North, Central and South American markets with their battery electric buses, and lineup of automobiles. Their mission lies not just in sales growth, but also in sociological integration and local job creation as they have poured incredible investments into developing offices, dealerships and manufacturing facilities in the local communities they now call home, truly a first for Chinese companies.

For media inquiries, please contact: Hando Kang, Vice President, International Public Affairs, hando.kang@skypower.com, +1 647 205 0619; Shamini Selvaratnam, Director, International Public Affairs, shaminis@skypower.com, +1 647 625 0997; Micheal Austin, Vice President, Public Relations, Micheal.Austin@byd.com, 1-800-BYD-Auto


Minister Muthambi to host media networking session: 13 May 2016

Members of the media are invited to a media networking session with Minister of Communications, Faith Muthambi and Executive Mayor of Vhembe District Municipality, Councillor, Tshitereke Matibe to engage on the process pertaining to the consultations on bringing stability to Vuwani.

Details are as follows:

Date: 13 May 2016

Time: 17h00

Venue: Council Chamber of the Vhembe District Municipality in Thohoyandou

Members of the media are also advised of the national day of prayer for peace and nation building which is to take place tomorrow, 14 May at the Christian Worship Centre (CWC) at Mashau in Makhado Municipality.


Eunice Nkuna

Cell: 082 530 7193


Michael Currin

Cell:082 462 7896

Thanyani Ravhura

Cell: 082 421 3461

Source: Government Communication and Information System