Daily Archives: July 19, 2017

Limpopo holds Exco Outreach Programme at Tshilapfene Village, 21 Jul

Limpopo Premier responds to Grandma Musumuvhi Luvhengo’s plight

Makhulu Vho-Musumuvhi Luvhengo has been staying with her dog in a one-roomed house made of mud and plastic for many years. The structure was used as a kitchen, dining and sleeping room.

The Limpopo Provincial Government together with the Thulamela Local Municipality restored her dignity by building her a house.

The house will be officially handed over to Makhulu Luvhengo by the Premier, Mr Chupu Stanley Mathabatha. Premier Mathabatha and his cabinet will proceed to Tshilapfene sports ground to listen to community concerns in relation to municipal and government service delivery issues. Residents will be afforded an opportunity to have their voices heard.

The programme’s main purpose is for the Premier and his Members Executive Council (MECs) to have an intensive interaction with residents on various service delivery issues that affects them on daily basis.

The Premier, MECs, Vhembe District Executive Mayor Cllr Florance Radzilani and Thulamela Mayor Cllr Avhashoni Tshifhango will also use the platform to provide feedback on issues raised in previous engagements with the community of Tshilapfene and its surroundings.

Source: Government of South Africa

Premier Supra Mahumapelo launches Reconciliation Healing and Renewal (RHR) Charter as part of Mandela Day commemoration

Premier Mahumapelo launches the RHR Charter

As part of commemorating Mandela Day, the North West Premier, Supra Mahumapelo has launched the Provincial Reconciliation Healing and Renewal (RHR) Charter saying it will play a critical role in healing the wounds of the past and creating a better Bokone Bophirima province.

Speaking during the launch held at Potchefstroom Banquet Hall on Tuesday, the Premier said the charter will infuse the spirit of peace and reconciliation in the province.

We are here to present officially the charter that belongs to every individual of about 3, 6 million population of this province.

All of us gathered here today, Black, White, Colored, Indians and Muslims to plant the seed which will germinate and be taken care of moving forward, by so doing later we will reap good fruits, he said.

The objective of the charter is to afford the citizens of the province with a platform to heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights.

Among those who attended the launch were MEC’s, Mayors, Members of Parliaments, Speakers, Traditional Leaders and Healers, Senior Government Officials, Councilors, churches, elderly and youth formations.

Dealing with racism issue, Premier Mahumapelo urged Ventersdorp/Tlokwe NW 405 Local Municipality to regularly hold SaamWerk-SaamTrek Dialogue consisting of all race to deal with the question of racism.

Our people here in this municipality need to come together in their diversity to fight racism whenever it raises its ugly head.

It is sad that we still have many people discriminating others because of the colour of their skin, this is something we must confront together as a society, he said.

Tlokwe and Ventersdorp in the recent past have being characterized by racial incidents more than many other areas in the province.

The Premier also condemned racial incidents which happened in the recent past in areas such as Swartruggens, Coligny, Koster, Rustenburg, Delarayville and Ottosdal of the province.

He highlighted that the province has introduced the Small Dorpies RHR programme to among other things assist farm workers and their families who are often victims of racism.

Through this programme we will zoom in at every farm in the province to see the living condition of the farm workers, their challenges and how we can assist them.

We must understand their living conditions and how they are treated by their employers, he said also adding that the programme will also look at farm worker who are buried next to the road and assist the families’involved to rebury them properly in their preferred places.

Also in observing the 67 minutes for Madiba, Premier Mahumapelo launched the 67 RHR Actions and 67 Advanced Entrepreneurship Ideas from young people. 67 needy schools from different areas in the province were also identified to receive donations.

Source: Government of South Africa

Held Back by violent Conflict, Arab States Need More Investment in Preventing Development Crises, Deputy Secretary-General Tells Event on Peace, Security

Following are UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohamed’s remarks at the High-Level Political Forum side event on peace and security and the Sustainable Development Goals in the Arab States region, in New York today:

I deeply appreciate the opportunity to address you today, not least because of the special affinity I hold for the Arab States region. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development recognizes clearly that there can be no sustainable development without peace, and no peace without sustainable development. This is also enshrined in the twin resolutions on sustaining peace.

Yet, globally, deaths in conflict, forced displacement and violent extremism are on the rise. And, as the 2016 United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Arab Human Development Report underscored, the Middle East and North Africa regions have been particularly vulnerable.

Arab countries are home to only 5 per cent of the world’s population, but, in 2014, they witnessed 45 per cent of the world’s terrorist incidents, 68 per cent of its battle-related deaths, 47 per cent of its internally displaced, and 58 per cent of its refugees. The same report predicts that, by 2020, almost 3 out of 4 Arabs could be ‘living in countries vulnerable’ to violent conflict.

Several of these crises are long-standing. In Palestine, for example, 50 years of occupation have fuelled recurring cycles of violence and retribution. Ending the occupation through a viable two-State solution is the only way to build enduring peace. Other conflicts have been triggered by the upheavals of 2011, with their roots in decades of development deficit, failed social contracts and too many people left behind.

The tensions, conflict, violent extremism and instability we witness in many Arab States are not only taking a tragic toll on lives and livelihoods; they are holding the region back, and in some cases, reversing decades of development. They are standing in the way of progress against the economic, political, social, human rights and environmental inequalities which remain a fact for far too many people in Arab countries. They hamper efforts to bring down unemployment rates, which remain the highest in the world, especially for youth. And they impede progress for women’s political, economic and social participation, which is far too low.

In brief, the Arab States region today needs peace to lay the foundation for sustainable development � and inclusive, rights-based sustainable development � to maintain enduring peace.

This year’s High-Level Political Forum coincides with the second year of implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. I commend the four Arab countries that have offered voluntary reports thus far � Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Qatar. I hope in future years we will hear from more Arab countries on their progress, their challenges and the support they need.

For our part, all United Nations agencies, funds and programmes are working closely to help Member States achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, with special attention to countries in crisis. We are coordinating ever more effectively and are motivated to continue to improve our service to Member States.

The United Nations development system is going through an ambitious reform, championed by the Secretary-General, which will strengthen our effectiveness. In some Arab States, as around the world, a major focus of this intensified effort involves strengthening the nexus between humanitarian and development assistance, as called for at the World Humanitarian Summit and made operational in the Secretary General’s New Way of Working.

The United Nations Development Programme-United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees partnership in the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan has been a pioneer in this regard, and offers lessons for adapting around the region and indeed the world.

Strengthening our work, our coordination and our efficiency at this nexus is an imperative. We cannot solve the challenges of the present with the tools of the past. The challenges ahead are profound. We count on Member States for support. Success will require a bolder approach to financing and partnerships. Nothing will be achieved without engaging all actors and developing inclusive solutions.

We salute the regional actors who have provided generous support for humanitarian and development aid in the region and beyond. And we thank the international community, which has expressed solidarity and supported resilience when it has never been more needed.

Across the United Nations, even in the most difficult of circumstances, we are committed to supporting planning for and implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and putting the 2030 Agenda at the heart of prevention, early recovery and resilience efforts. And, as highlighted in the Agenda for Humanity, we urge more investment in development in fragile contexts, to address root causes and to seek to prevent crises from occurring in the first place.

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in the Middle East and North Africa region will require the best engagement of all actors. This event can help strengthen the platform for cooperation that emphasizes the fundamental interlinkages between the peace and security agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, and addresses the humanitarian-development nexus.

As we discuss let us allow a cautious optimism. We have seen important moments of progress in recent weeks, for example the Iraqi Government’s reclaiming of Mosul, and the ceasefire in south-western Syria. And we know that in every country in crisis in the region, there are many pockets of peace that go unreported.

In every country in these regions, women, men and young people are working hard to bring an end to conflicts they did not start, and they do not want. It is up to us to do everything we can to ensure that once peace is achieved, it can be sustained. And that once prosperity is pursued, it brings a dividend in enduring peace.

I wish you a fruitful discussion that can help strengthen our shared agenda, and bring us closer to a long-needed future of peace, prosperity and sustainable development in the Arab States.

Source: United Nations

Native American Healing Class Sparks Unique Health Textbook

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. � Laughter can combat trauma. Spiritual cleansings could be used to fight an opioid addiction. Cactus extract may battle diabetes and obesity.

These insights are from curanderismo � traditional indigenous healing from the American Southwest and Latin America.

University of New Mexico professor Eliseo “Cheo” Torres’ has included these thoughts in a new, unique textbook connected to his internationally-known annual course on curanderismo.

“Curanderismo: The Art of Traditional Medicine Without Borders,” released last week, coincides with Torres’ annual gathering of curandero students and healers around the world at the University of New Mexico. For nearly 20 years, healers and their students have come to Albuquerque to meet and exchange ideas on traditional healing that for many years were often ignored and ridiculed.

Torres, who is also the university’s vice president for student affairs, said the popularity of the annual course and a similar online class he teaches convinced him that there needed to be a textbook on curanderismo.

“This textbook came out of the experience of this class and the ideas that have been shared through the years,” Torres said during a special morning ceremony with Aztec dancers on campus. “From healers in Mexico to those in Africa, many have long traditions of healing that are being rediscovered by a new generation.”

Curanderismo is the art of using traditional healing methods like herbs and plants to treat various ailments. Long practiced in Native American villages of Mexico and other parts of Latin America, curanderos also are found in New Mexico, south Texas, Arizona and California.

Anthropologists believe curanderismo remained popular among poor Latinos because they didn’t have access to health care. But they say the field is gaining traction among those who seek to use alternative medicine.

“I believe people are disenchanted with our health system,” Torres said. “Some people can’t afford it now, and they are looking for other ways to empower themselves to heal.”

The textbook gives a survey of medicinal plants used to help digestive systems and how healers draw in laugh therapy to cope with traumatic experiences.

Ricardo Carrillo, a licensed psychologist and a healer based in Oakland, California, said he’s seeing younger people look to curanderismo to help with challenges like addiction and physical pain.

“Yes, you have to go through detox and do all that you are supposed to do to get yourself clean,” said Carrillo, who came to the Albuquerque workshop to speak. “Curanderismo can give you the spiritual tools to keep yourself clean and look to a higher power.”

Among the ailments curanderos treat are mal de ojo, or evil eye, and susto, magical fright.

Mal de ojo is the belief that an admiring look or a stare can weaken someone, mainly a child, leading to bad luck, even death.

Susto is a folk illness linked to a frightful experience, such as an automobile accident or tripping over an unseen object. Those who believe they are inflicted with susto say only a curandero can cure them.

Source: Voice of America

Top notch school opens in rural KZN

A state-of-the-art school has opened its doors in rural uMlalazi in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

Welabasha Technical High School is one of the schools that were identified by the provincial government for upgrades and renovations. Boarding facilities are being added to the schools.

The project was made possible by the Independent Development Trust (IDT) on behalf the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education.

The IDT was contracted by the department to build 17 new classrooms; two multi-purpose centres; two computer laboratories; an administration block; three workshops for electrical, civil and mechanical engineering; a hospitality block and a kitchen; a change room for learners who participate in sporting activities; ablution facilities for educators and learners; a media centre; a parking area for educators and visitors, and a high capacity water tank and sewerage treatment plant.

The newly built Welabasha school facilities are now occupied by about 1 400 learners who come from Empangeni, Richards Bay, Esikhawini and Mtubatuba, and 43 educators, as well as other support staff including security guards, cleaners and clerks.

Over and above building new structures, the IDT was tasked with renovating 15 old classrooms, a science laboratory and ablution facilities.

The project cost for all the new structures and the renovations amount to about R105 million. During the construction of the school, the IDT created at least 128 job opportunities for locals, including 22 females, 106 males and 79 youths.

Community involvement and work opportunities

The IDT undertook extensive community mobilisation and negotiations with the local chief, who donated the land for the new school. Local communities played their part by vacating their ploughing fields for the school to be built.

The IDT is an entity of the National Department of Public Works that is mandated to support all spheres of government with social infrastructure management and programme implementation.

In the past five years, the IDT supported 40 government departments. It built 97 new schools and 36 new health facilities, renovating hundreds more.

It created more than 360 000 work opportunities in various communities through its implementation of social infrastructure programmes and the Expanded Public Works Programme.

Source: South African Government News Agency