Daily Archives: October 12, 2016

COUNTDOWN BEGINS TO HISTORIC DAY FOR TV IN SOUTH AFRICA

The countdown to the biggest day in the history of television in South Africa has begun with Communications Minister Faith Muthambi set to begin the switching off of analogue signals in Northern Cape Province in less than a month’s time, paving the way for the era of digital television in the country.

Muthambi will officially discontinue the old fashioned analogue system on Friday, Oct 28. The moment is set to change the face of television broadcasting in South Africa. Turning off analogue TV signals paves the way for a new era in broadcasting for viewers in the area.

More than 3,700 households in the towns of Carnavon, Vanwyksvlei, Brandvlei, Vosburg and Williston have fully migrated to the much awaited digital platform, a clear indication that the old-fashioned analogue transmitters in the area are ready to be switched off.

The change to digital television signals the dawn of a fully digital age in which everyone can enjoy extra choice of more channels of perfect digital reception. The analogue switch-off is the process in which analogue television broadcasting is converted to and replaced by digital television.

The world is going through a television revolution of migrating from analogue to digital broadcasting. The advent of digital technologies worldwide and the need to provide more spectrum for modern high broadband telecommunications needs has necessitated the migration from the outdated analogue transmission methods to digital methods.

The efficiencies realised from the digital transmission technology will result in more economic benefits for the consumers and the country at large.

Residents living in the community of Keimoes and Kai Garib in Northern Cape Province were the first people in South Africa to experience digital television transmission in the country, following the unveiling of the registration process for set top boxes (STBs) in the area in October, last year.

Subsequent to this, Muthambi launched the first installation of government subsidised STBs in Keimoes in December 2015. The government will be rolling-out subsidised STBs in a provincial phased approach, as it has already started in the Northern Cape and Limpopo provinces.

More registrations are underway in Free State and Mpumalanga provinces. Poor households who qualify for the government subsidy are urged to register for free STBs at their local Post Office branches.

Registrations will open in the provinces of North West, Eastern Cape, Kwa-Zulu Natal, Western Cape and Gauteng at a later stage. Priority is given to the provinces along South African borders in order to minimise the prospects of signal interference with neighboring countries who are ready to deploy mobile communication services in the spectrum currently used by analogue television transmissions.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

SOUTH AFRICA, SINGAPORE MUST STRENGTHEN BILATERAL TIES, SAYS RAMAPHOSA

Singapore and South Africa must work towards strengthening bilateral relations and improving trade, says South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.

In his address at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy in the island republic over the weekend, Ramaphosa, who arrived Wednesday for a working visit, called on Singapore to take advantage of opportunities available in South Africa.

We invite this industrious nation to expand its role in South Africa to help grow our economy and skill our people. Singapore is well positioned to take advantage of rewarding investment opportunities offered by our country as we re-ignite economic growth to defeat poverty, unemployment, inequality and underdevelopment.

South Africa is a nation hard at work building an inclusive society from a divided and unequal past and to overcome this government is implementing the National Development Plan, said Ramaphosa. It is a social compact that unites all South Africans in reducing poverty and inequality through investment, employment creation and skills development.

South Africa, given its long history of racial division and social exclusion, sees a developmental state as a critical instrument to achieve socio-economic transformation. We recognize that more effective state provision of education, health, municipal services, public transport and social security is needed to improve the living standards of the poor. We are constantly improving the ability of the state to deliver quality services better, he added.

Ramaphosa said South Africa could learn from the efficient management of Singapore’s state-owned companies. We hope to understand how you have developed these companies to be at the forefront of economic development and inclusive growth, he said.

He also said that South Africa is an integral part of the continent, which is seeing significant economic growth and social development. The continent has several strategic advantages, including abundant mineral resources, significant agricultural potential, expanding cities, a young population and growing middle class.

Ramaphosa added that while the continent was widely acknowledged as the next growth frontier, Africa needed to address the legacy of colonialism and under-development if it is to achieve its full potential.

The continent needs to diversify its economies, improve its transport networks and energy supply, educate its youth and increase intra-African trade, he stressed. Through the African Union, the continent has chosen an industrialisation path driven by regional integration, infrastructure development, mineral beneficiation and developing the agricultural value chain.

With its strategic position in the continent, South Africa offered an advantage for international companies, he said. We are a leading investor in the continent. Together with Singapore we can explore commercial opportunities which will benefit our countries and the people of Africa, said the Deputy President.

South Africa is an attractive place to do business as it boasts a sophisticated financial and business services sector and has extensive mineral resources and a modern, productive agricultural sector, among others.

The Deputy President’s second leg visit to Singapore ended Sunday. The Deputy President earlier visited Vietnam.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

SOUTH AFRICAN FINANCE MINISTER VOWS TO STAY PUT DESPITE FRAUD CHARGES

South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan has vowed to carry on with his job despite being issued with a formal summons to appear in court on Nov 2 over fraud charges laid against him.

“I intend to continue doing my job.” Gordhan said here Tuesday. “The fight against corruption, maladministration, and the waste of public resources will continue.”

The Director of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Shaun Abrahams, announced earlier Tuesday that GordhanS former South African Revenue Service (SARS) Commissioner Oupa Magashule and former SARS Deputy Commissioner Ivan Pillay would be charged with fraud amounting to more than 1.1 million Rand (about 79,550 US dollars) relating to Pillay’s early retirement.

The rand tumbled as much as 3.0 per cent here Tuesday following the announcement.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

Learners encouraged to explore tourism careers

Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom says learners should explore the vast range of careers in the tourism industry.

The Minister on Tuesday spoke to learners at a stakeholder engagement and career expo at Rocklands High School in Mitchells Plain.The event was attended by over a 1 000 learners from seven schools that offer tourism in their curriculum.

Minister Hanekom told learners that they were the industry’s future ambassadors and they should make full use of every opportunity to learn more about tourism before embarking on careers in this field.

The role of government is not to create business, that is the private sector’s role. We are here to facilitate the process and to contribute to the training and development of resources where we can, and this is what we are doing through our constant engagement between the three spheres of government, said the Minister.

Rocklands High School received a top prize in 2014 during a national heritage schools competition organised by the National Heritage Council and the South African Heritage Resources Agency. Over 500 learners at the school are taking tourism as a subject.

Speakers from the various spheres of the tourism industry encouraged learners to do well in their studies and grab the opportunities at their disposal.

Speakers included the Marketing and Communications Manager from South African Tourism, Mabeka Makola, Hilton Group Regional Human Resource Manager, Peter Thomas and tour operator for Escape to the Cape, Shaheed Ebrahim. They shared their personal stories of their work experience in the tourism industry.

The formal programme was followed by an exhibition walkabout, where 18 exhibitors displayed their products.

Source: South African Government News Agency

North West Local Government trains women in disaster prone areas on first aid

Women in disaster prone areas get trained on first aid ahead of IDDR

The Department of Local Government and Human Settlements has gone a step ahead to mark the International Day for Disaster Reduction (IDDR) which is celebrated every 13 October, by training at least 30 women from early learning centres in North West 405 local municipality (formerly Ventersdorp and Tlokwe local municipalities), on first aid.

The training was intended to capacitate these women with skills that will enable them to respond to emergency situations whilst awaiting professional assistance from relevant services such as fire, rescue and ambulance services. The training was in line with the National Disaster Management Policy Framework and the National Policy Framework which calls for an intergrated multi-sectoral, multi-disciplinary process approach of dealing with the occurrence and impact of disaster.

The MEC for Local Government and Human Settlements, Galaletsang Gaolaolwe said the department through the Provincial Disaster Management Centre has a mandate to promote a culture of risk avoidance amongst stakeholders by developing the capacity of role players through integrated, training and public creation programmes informed by scientific research. In order to facilitate risk-avoidance for all stakeholders, our public awareness campaigns are aimed at raising consciousness about risks and must provide information on how to reduce vulnerability and exposure to hazards”, she said.

IDDR was first celebrated in 1989 after a call by the United Nations General Assembly to promote a global culture of risk awareness and disaster reduction. This day celebrates how people and communities around the world are reducing their exposure to disasters and raising awareness about the importance of reigning in the risks that they face.

Source: Government of South Africa