Daily Archives: July 5, 2018

Government working to ease fuel pinch

Government is actively seeking ways to soften the blow the recent fuel price increases have had on consumers, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Thursday.

President Ramaphosa made the impassioned commitment during a press briefing on the side-lines of Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo’s first state visit to South Africa.

Addressing journalists at the Union Buildings, President Ramaphosa said the recent fuel increases were unfortunate but that the government was working towards finding a solution. Fuel this week increased by between 26 cents and 37 cents and was expected to be hiked again next month.

We, as a government, are busy at the moment looking at the impact of these price increases with regards to petrol and we are actively looking at ways in which we can find some solutions.

Solutions are not going to be easy to find. We feel for our people and we are going to be working to find ways in which we can soften the blow and ameliorate this difficulty that our people are facing, he said.

The President indicated that the situation was beyond the government’s control as prices were determined by the price fluctuations on the dollar exchange basis as well as the price of oil.

South Africa is in the unfortunate position in that we import our energy resource, which is oil. We are price takers, we don’t make the price and we are therefore vulnerable in that regard.

The President further urged businesses to hold off on increasing prices until a solution was found.

All we can say is; those who may be thinking � particularly retailers � of increasing prices, to hold back and not increase prices of food stuff and other products that our people use. This fuel price should not automatically lead to the increased living conditions for our people. At a government level, we will be seeing what ways can be found in order to ameliorate the difficulty our people are going through.

The two countries had agreed to engage on energy.

We were joined by the ministers who deal with energy on both sides. We were particularly pleased when President Akufo-Addo informed us that Ghana was going to open up a new block and they have actively invited South Africa to pay an interest in this. We immediately raised our hand in this.

We are interested in participating in finding ways in oil exploitation. In this regard our Minister [of] Energy, Jeff Radebe, will join his counterpart in trying to see if we can reach agreements on how South Africa can participate, the President said.

Source: South African Government News Agency

Hawks Head applauds UNICRI Specialised Training on the Transnational Organised Crime involvement

The United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) and the Directorate for Priority Crimes Investigation (Hawks) have organized a 3-day specialised training to enhance the capacity of South African law enforcement and judiciary professionals in countering the threat posed by the involvement of transnational organised crime in the precious metals and gemstones supply chains.

The specialised training, entitled Transnational Organised Crime Involvement in the Precious Metals and Gemstones Supply Chain, takes place in Pretoria at the Financial Intelligence Center (FIC) from 3 to 5 July 2018, and sees the involvement of leading experts, prosecutors and law enforcement officers experienced in investigating transnational organised crime and illicit trafficking in precious metals.

The crimes around the precious metals and gemstones mineral supply chain are committed in multiple jurisdictions along the entire process. Crimes include: forgery of government documentation, tax fraud, labelling fraud, forced labour corruption, and money laundering. The rising involvement of transnational organised crime in this sector requires enhanced multiagency and cross border cooperation to counter these illicit activities and secure the integrity of mineral supply chain.

The specialised training is designed with a regional approach, enabling participants to share knowledge, analyse national and international legal frameworks, while creating new networks. Law enforcement and judicial professionals will strengthen their capacity to detect, investigate and prosecute crimes related to the integrity of the supply chains, and identify good practices in terms of information sharing and cooperation. Participants will also be equipped to better promote joint actions with relevant institutions to ensure a comprehensive approach towards securing the integrity of the precious metals and gemstones supply chains.

This activity is organized within the framework of the “Rapid Response” capacity-building programme designed by UNICRI for law enforcement agencies (LEAs) and judicial institutions on transnational crimes.

In its resolution 2013/38 entitled Combatting transnational organized crime and its possible links to illicit trafficking in precious metals, the Economic and Social Council calls upon the UNICRI to conduct a comprehensive study on the possible links between transnational organised crime, other criminal activities and illicit trafficking in precious metals.

In line with this request, UNICRI, in cooperation with the government of South Africa, has conducted a comprehensive study to assess the degree and scale of the threat posed by the illicit trafficking in precious metals and related organised crime activities and developed a programme to promote an international strategy to combat illicit trafficking in precious metals. Reinforcing national capacities, establishing an international network of key stakeholders and support cooperation between the Private and Public sector are fundamental components of this strategy.

During the specialised training the following high-level speakers addressed issues in their areas of expertise: South African Precious Metals and Diamonds Regulator, Financial Intelligence Center, specialized units of the South African Police Service, National Director of Public Prosecutions, Asset Forfeiture Unit, South African Revenue Services, and representatives from the gold and platinum mining sector.

The National Head of the DPCI, Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya has welcomed the initiative and emphasised the need of building partnerships.

In recent years, the global law enforcement community has recognized the need for greater cooperation. We are joining hands operationally and I truly applaud the initiative and contributions of all stakeholders who joined efforts sharing the skills on combatting transnational organised crime with specific reference to precious metals and related commodities said Lieutenant General Lebeya.

Source: South African Police Service

CUBA, SOUTH AFRICA TALK ABOUT INCREASING BILATERAL COOPERATION

HAVANA–The Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez today received the Minister of South African Presidency, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, in this capital, with whom he discussed bilateral cooperation in several sectors and means to increase it.

According to a note published on the website of the Cuban Foreign Ministry, both agreed that relations between the two countries are in a good state.

During her work visit, Dlamini-Zuma, also in charge of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, will attend the commemorative act for the Centennial of the South African leader Nelson Mandela’s birth.

On that occasion, there will be a farewell for 700 South African medical students finishing their fifth year in Cuba and returning to their country to conclude the speciality.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

Limpopo Education on tragic passing of Grade 12 learner from Mphari Secondary school

Tragic passing of a Grade 12 learner at a Winter Support Camp

The Department wishes to express its sadness due to the death of Benedict Phaswane Monene, a Grade 12 learner from Mphari Secondary school at Mogalakwena, Baltimore circuit, Waterberg District.

Benedict Phaswane Monene, was attending a two week Winter Support Camp as part of curbing the high failure rate in grade 12. The two week Winter Support Camp was arranged at Kgobuki Primary school for 298 learners from 8 secondary schools from Baltimore circuit. Learners arrived at the camp on 24 June 2018 and lessons commenced on 25 June 2018.

Winter Support Camps are the department’s intervention strategy to improve the quality of learner performance and grade 12 results in the province.

Learners at the camp were feed freshly cooked food by food handlers who cook for learners under the NSNP on daily basis. This made hygiene a normal thing as the food handlers are used to cleanliness.

On Sunday, 01 July 2018, while the learners were taking a break from lessons, others played sports and others did their laundry.

Benedict was playing football with his peers when he suddenly collapsed and was rushed to Mankuwe clinic; where he was sadly certified dead.

After receiving the sad news the host principal called other members of the management at the centre, where a decision was taken to discontinue the camp.

The very same group then went to the family to inform them of the news. Monene’s family indicated that they were aware that their son had health problems but never considered them serious.

The Department of Education is working closely with the Department of Social Development in counselling all the affected parties.

Benedict Phaswane Monene, will be laid to rest on 07 July 2018 and a memorial service held today on 5 July 2018 at Mphari Secondary school.

Source: Government of South Africa

Minister Lindiwe Sisulu hosts her Venezuelan counterpart, 6 Jul

Minister Sisulu to host her Venezuelan counterpart

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms Lindiwe Sisulu, will on Friday, 06 July 2018, host the Venezuelan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Jorge Arreaza. This visit takes place after the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela held its Presidential elections on 20 May 2018, which saw the re-election of President Nicolas Maduro as the Head of State and the re-appointment of Minister Arreaza to the portfolio of Foreign Affairs.

The visit will be used as an opportunity to continue to strengthen the existing bilateral relations between South Africa and Venezuela, specifically on the areas of Trade and Investment; Agriculture; Energy; Transport; Mining, Tourism and consular matters as the identified areas of focus for the relationship. Diplomatic relations between South Africa and the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela were established in 1993 and in 1995. The two countries share cordial relations premised on mainly political relations.

Source: Government of South Africa