Daily Archives: May 10, 2017

Alternate Foreign Minister G. Katrougalos meets with OSCE Secretary General Lamberto Zannier

Alternate Foreign Minister G Katrougalos met today with the Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Lamberto Zannier.

During their meeting, the OSEC Secretary General focused mainly on the situation in Ukraine. The Alternate Foreign Minister supported the OSCE’s work, agreeing that handling the crisis in question is a major challenge.

They also discussed issues concerning the situation in the Western Balkans, with the two sides agreeing that it is in everyone’s interest for efforts to be made to defend political stability and consolidate the rule of law.

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Republic

New Chief Financial Officer for SAA

Pretoria – Phumeza Nhantsi has been appointed as Chief Financial Officer of South African Airways (SAA).

South African Airways has announced the appointment of Phumeza Nhantsi as SAA’s new Chief Financial Officer (CFO). The appointment is effective from 1 May 2017, SAA said on Wednesday.

The 39-year-old Nhantsi was appointed as SAA’s Interim CFO in November 2015 after the position was left vacant following the departure of Wolf Meyer.

The appointment followed a rigorous recruitment and selection process before a recommendation was made to the Shareholder for concurrence.

Since the appointment of the full-strength Board in September 2016, the focus has been on stabilising the business and one of the priorities was to ensure that key management vacancies are filled.

This is one such key appointment for the airline to ensure that SAA’s strategic objective of transforming the business into a financially sustainable aviation group is achieved, said SAA Acting Chief Executive Officer Musa Zwane.

Prior to joining SAA, Nhantsi was a Director at SizweNtsalubaGobodo, the fifth-largest accounting firm in Southern Africa and the largest black-owned and managed firm.

She was temporarily seconded from SizweNtsalubaGobodo to SAA.

Nhantsi, who is a chartered accountant, has extensive experience in the financial services and aviation arena.

We congratulate Ms Nhantsi on her appointment and wish her well in executing her responsibilities, said Zwane.

Source: South African Government News Agency


PRETORIA, South African President Jacob Zuma leaves Thursday for a State visit to Tanzania, where he will co-chair the launch of the South Africa-Tanzania Bi-National Commission (BNC) with his host, President John Pemba Magufuli.

The BNC is the highest mechanism regulating bilateral relations between two countries and the agreement establishing the BNC was signed in July 2011 and will be operationalised and officially launched on Thursday.

The visit will allow the two Heads of State to hold talks on a wide range of bilateral issues, according to a statement issued by the Presidency here Monday.

This will include a review of the status of the bilateral relations, adoption of strategic interventions to further strengthen the relationship to focus on mutually identified priority issues and discuss regional and continental peace and security issues, the Presidency said.

During the visit, President Zuma and President Magufuli will also address the South Africa-Tanzania Business Forum, which will be held on the sidelines of the State visit to strengthen economic relations between the two countries.

The two countries enjoy excellent bilateral relations, which date back to the days of South Africa’s liberation struggle. On the economic front, relations continue to grow and co-operation encompasses trade and investment, science and technology, agriculture, environment, energy, infrastructure development and retail, among others.

Trade between the two countries in 2016 indicated that South African exports to Tanzania were valued at 6.5 billion Rand (about 487 million US dollars), while imports from Tanzania amounted to 3.5 billion Rand. There are more than 150 South African companies operating in Tanzania in areas such as financial services, hospitality and leisure as well as electronics and information communication technology (ICT).

President Zuma will be accompanied by Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane; Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula; Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor; Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies; Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa; Transport Minister Joe Maswanganyi and a business delegation.


South Sudan Army Chief Sworn In One Day After Malong’s Ouster

General James Ajongo was sworn in Wednesday as the new SPLA army chief, a day after South Sudan President Salva Kiir fired his predecessor, General Paul Malong, with no explanation.

Ajongo said he would work to implement the security arrangements stipulated in the 2015 peace agreement and strive to end the fighting. He also said he would address the increasing numbers of armed groups across South Sudan who are trying to topple Kiir’s government.

Amid tight security in and around the Presidential Palace, Ajongo was sworn in by South Sudan’s chief justice in front of a small audience of government officials. Afterward, Ajongo told reporters he recognized that the conflict is South Sudan’s biggest problem.

“It is a difficult task, given the fact the country is actually in conflict by itself, but making use of our good human resources [of] my colleagues behind here, I believe that they are the right people who [are] posted in the right place. We will be able to manage the situation, and we will exit from this conflict,” Ajongo said.

Career soldier

Like Malong, Ajongo is from Aweil in the former Northern Bahr el Ghazal State.

Presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny described Ajongo as a career soldier. “He is the former deputy chief of general staff for administration and finance. … He has been in the SPLA since 1983 and he has not taken any position like General Malong.”

Malong, sometimes referred to by supporters as “King Paul” for his lack of remorse, was appointed by Kiir in 2014. Since taking office, he has never seen peace in his country.

Malong was born sometime in the early 1950s in Warawar, north of Aweil town. His exact birthdate was not recorded. In 1969, he attended basic school in his home village before completing intermediate studies at St. James in Khartoum. Malong completed school in Khartoum and returned to Aweil to form Anya-Nya, a military and political movement, which later became part of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army.

Presidential guard unit

In 2005, Malong set up the South Sudan presidential guard unit of the army, becoming commander of the Republican Guard. He served as a deputy of the National Intelligence and Security Services in Khartoum after the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005. Malong was promoted to general by Sudan President Omar al-Bashir that same year.

In April 2008, Malong was appointed governor of Northern Bahr el Ghazal state. After fighting broke out in December 2013 in Juba, Malong was appointed SPLA chief of staff in April 2014, a position he held until Tuesday.

Malong vowed to restore law and order. Since his appointment, however, fighting has continued across South Sudan, even spreading to areas that were previously calm.

Malong was accused of recruiting pro-government militias known as the Mathiang Anyor who reportedly attacked civilians in Wau, Yei, Kajokeji, Parjok, Magawi and Morobo in the former Central Equatoria state.

Malong arrived in Yirol in Eastern Lakes State on Wednesday, where he was cheered by supporters.

Malong reportedly headed home to Aweil with a heavily armed convoy. That has aroused fears among some residents of possible clashes between government forces and those allied to the general.

Further splits feared

Aweil resident Abraham Wol Kom is one of them.

“The presidential decree which relieved the chief of staff is very surprising,” he said. “The decree will increase the current political crisis. It may spark further splits across the nation, and as I speak now, Juba has been deserted. The chief of General Staff has left with a huge number of army.”

Resident Mayen Tong feared Malong’s firing could lead to another rebellion.

“I am not feeling comfortable. I don’t know what this guy will do, because he has been the chief of army. He can rebel against the government,” Tong said.

Brian Adeba, associate director of policy at the Enough Project, said that although Malong was a powerful figure, not much would change under Ajongo.

“If you see his replacement, a protege of Malong, he was active in the war front in Unity State in the Greater Upper Nile in the beginning of this war. He’s been pictured with Malong at theaters of operation. So he’s literally following in the footsteps of Malong,” Adeba said.

Source: Voice of America