SA urged to be innovators in the 4IR

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

South Africa must not be relegated to catching up to the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) but must be part of the innovators, says Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula.

“We must not only respond to what others have produced because that will often give rise to additional challenges. Research and Development funding has to be prioritised by the sector, especially governments,” the Minister said. 

The Minister was on Monday addressing the Southern African Transport Conference at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Tshwane.

“The pace at which Industry 4.0 innovation-breakthroughs are occurring is unprecedented and foreseen to grow faster, and so is the diffusion worldwide. The speed of diffusion compels companies and governments to change from the ‘business as usual’ way of doing things,” Mbalula said.

The Minister said recent transport technologies are evolving at such a rapid pace and it is vital that transport regulations be revised to accommodate technological innovations.

The Minister said the World Bank suggests that transport in the near future will be characterised by being “connected, data driven, shared, on-demand, electric and highly automated”.

It is also expected to be more sensitive towards climate change pressures, and for externalities to be internalised by respective sources. 

“These changes in transport technologies are consequently in tandem with the notion of global climate change, as a consequence of the combustion of fossil fuels by most vehicles. This remains a major environmental challenge currently facing Southern Africa and the world at large.

“The large-scale combustion of fossil fuels also contributes to the change in the composition of the earth's atmosphere. The result is a general process of global warming and if it continues unattended, will lead to significant changes in rainfall patterns and frequent, extreme weather events,” Mbalula said.

To respond to these disruptive factors, government is committed to significantly reduce transport’s contribution to national Green House Gases emissions, through the implementation of the Green Transport Strategy (GTS).

The strategy is aimed at minimising the adverse impact of transport on the environment, while addressing current and future transport demands. 

“As a stepping stone, as government, we need to actively promote investment in the production of biogas, the use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), Liquid Natural Gas (LNG), as well as fuel cell and solar powered Electric Vehicles (EVs). In addition, there is currently no policy or regulatory framework that determines the requirements, norms and standards for cleaner fossil fuels in South Africa. 

“There is also no policy or incentive scheme that rewards users of cleaner fuels and cleaner fossil fuels. This is perhaps an area we need to pay particular attention to across government,” he said. –

Tito Mboweni announced as new Finance Minister

Former Reserve Bank Governor Tito Mboweni has been sworn in as South Africa’s new Finance Minister.

This comes after outgoing Minister, Nhlanhla Nene, submitted a letter of resignation on Tuesday morning to President Cyril Ramaphosa, requesting to be relieved of his duties.

President Ramaphosa made the announcement in Cape Town on Tuesday.

“Over the course of the last few days there has been much discussion among South Africans on matters that arose in the course of the testimony of Minister Nhlanhla Nene at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

“As a consequence of these developments, Minister Nene submitted a letter of resignation this morning in which he requested that I relieve him of the position of the Minister of Finance,” the President said.

He said Nene had indicated that there is risk that the developments around his testimony will detract from the important task of serving the people of South Africa, particularly as government works to re-establish public trust.

The President’s announcement comes after Presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko told journalists on Tuesday that there had been engagements between the President and Nene following his testimony at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, chaired by Deputy Chief Justice, Judge Raymond Zondo.

Following his testimony to the commission last week, Nene released a statement apologising to South Africans for his lapse in judgement after his earlier statement during a TV interview that he had not gone to meet members of the Gupta family, except for at public functions.

Briefing journalists on Tuesday, the President said after due consideration of the evidence presented by Nene at the Commission, and in the interests of good governance, he took a decision to accept Nene's resignation.

The President took some time to thank Nene for having served the people and the government of South Africa with “diligence and ability”.

He said that under difficult circumstances and often under great pressure, Nene consistently defended the cause of proper financial management and clean governance.

“It is a measure of his character and his commitment to the national interest that he has taken this decision to resign in the wake of errors of judgment, even though he has not been implicated in acts of wrongdoing,” he said.

Mboweni returns

After a brief stint as advisor to the Reserve Bank Governor between July 1998 and July 1999, Mboweni was appointed as the Governor in August 1999.

Mboweni was appointed to several positions during his tenure. This includes his appointment as the honorary Professor of Economics by the University of South Africa between 2000 and 2003 as well as being elected Chancellor of the University of the North West and he was installed as Chancellor in February 2002.

In April of 2002, Mboweni was appointed as the Governor Professor Extraordinary in Economics and served in that capacity until 31 March 2005.

On Tuesday, the President said that having served as a Minister of Labour before being appointed as a Governor of the Reserve Bank, Mboweni brings a wealth of experience “in the areas of finance, economic policy and governance”.

“Mr Mboweni takes on this responsibility at a critical moment for our economy, as we intensify cooperation among all social partners to increase investment, accelerate growth and create jobs on a substantial scale.

“This moment calls for strong, capable and steady leadership that will unlock new opportunities as we grow and transform our economy.

“I am confident that Mr Mboweni will provide that leadership.”

Commission of Inquiry on State Capture

The President said, meanwhile, it was critical the Commission has the means and opportunity to effectively fulfil its mandate.

He said during this process, no person should be above scrutiny, and all relevant and credible accusations of wrongdoing should be thoroughly investigated.

“It is incumbent upon any person who may have knowledge of any of the matters within the Commission’s mandate to provide that information to the Commission, to do so honestly and to do so fully.

“For the country to move forward, we need to establish the full extent of state capture, identify those responsible for facilitating it, and take decisive steps to prevent it happening again.

“Throughout this process, we need to be guided by the values and principles of our Constitution, mindful of the importance of due process, committed to good governance, and determined that, with the support of all South Africans, the Commission of Inquiry will succeed in fulfilling its critical mandate,” he said. –

Mintek gives back to a school for Mandela Day

Mintek spent their Mandela Day, 18 July 2018 at Cosmo City Secondary 1 donating desks and chairs to the school, this was their way of helping the school in any way they could. Mintek donated over 15 desks and over 50 chairs to the school.

Mintek is part of the science council under the department of mineral resources, they specialise in research, technology development (the developing of new technology in the mining sector), mineral processing (the process of separating valuable minerals from their original shells) and value beneficiation (the treatment of raw materials to improve physical or chemical properties).

The company has offered to take some learners to their offices and show them what they do. They also offered 5 maths and science learners bursaries for further studies and mentorship. Acting CEO of Mintek David Msiza said they helping the school because it is close to them and they brought furniture that the school needed and could put to good use.

Acting deputy principal at Cosmo secondary 1, Mr Kgaugelo Makua said he was grateful to the Mintek team, he explained that the school did not have enough desks and chairs to accommodate students.










Top artists head to SA for Mandela 100 Festival

Beyoncé, JAY-Z, Cassper Nyovest, D'banj, Ed Sheeran, Eddie Vedder, Femi Kuti, Pharrell Williams and Chris Martin, Sho Madjozi, Tiwa Savage, Usher, Wizkid -- these artists and more are convening on 2 December in South Africa with world and corporate leaders to present the biggest campaign on the Global Goals to end extreme poverty ever.
“Responding to Nelson Mandela’s call for us to be the generation to end extreme poverty, artists and leaders will be joined by 100 000 Global Citizens who’ve taken action on the Global Citizen social advocacy platform to earn their free tickets to the festival at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg,” said Global Citizen in a statement on Monday.
The Mandela 100 Festival, in partnership with the House of Mandela, will serve as the capstone event of Global Citizen’s year-long Be the Generation campaign, inspired by the revered former leader of South Africa and his lifelong dedication to rallying people together to use their collective voices to speak for the most marginalized people.
Global Citizen Festival Mandela 100 hosts include Naomi Campbell, Bonang Matheba, Sir Bob Geldof, Gayle King, Tyler Perry and Forest Whitaker.
“Nelson Mandela's life story is a testament to the power of the human spirit and one man's ability to change the world by standing up for what he believed in,” said Oprah Winfrey, who will speak at the festival.
“It is one of the great honours of my life to have spent so much time with him, and I look forward to celebrating his courageous life.”
The Global Citizen campaign, which aims to rally $1 billion in new commitments, with $500 million of that set to impact the lives of 20 million women and girls worldwide, will focus on the first six Global Goals: ending poverty, zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, and life below water.
As is always the case with Global Citizen festivals — tickets are free. All you need to do is, starting 21 August, take action on the Global Citizen platforms —, on the Global Citizen app, or with the Facebook Messenger bot — search “Global Citizen” in Facebook Messenger to learn more. There will also be opportunities for Global Citizens to earn free tickets by taking actions in their communities of Johannesburg.
For those who sign-up at, you can earn bonus rewards and early access by referring your friends to Global Citizen.
On 2 December at FNB Stadium, Global Citizens who earn their free tickets will see a music performance of a lifetime, as artists from around the world gather on the stage alongside world and corporate leaders, activists and advocates.
Kweku Mandela, a grandson of Nelson Mandela, said: "My grandfather installed in me the need to use your voice and actions to champion the struggles of your community. He believed that poverty is man-made and could be eradicated by our actions. I am proud to be a part of a movement that reflects this and use citizen power to drive real change."
High ranking support
A number of world leaders are expected to also attend, including South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations Amina J Mohammed, who delivered the 2017 Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture, Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo, who both serve as co-chairs of the UN Secretary General’s Advocacy Group for the Sustainable Development Goals, Director-General of the
World Health Organization Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, President of the UN International Fund for Agricultural Development Gilbert F. Houngbo, Deputy Prime Minister of Belgium Alexander De Croo, Ambassador Ertharin Cousin, Chair of Power of Nutrition, and Peter Sands, Executive Director of the The Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
“This significant event not only honours the legacy of one of the greatest global citizens of our time, but provides a powerful platform for youth around the world to make a positive and tangible contribution for people and planet,” said United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed.
"I am honoured to be a special guest speaker at the Festival and hope it truly inspires a youth-led movement to take action in both local and global efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.”
The actions Global Citizens will take to earn their free tickets will be focused on ending hunger and increasing access to good nutrition for adolescent girls, ending neglected tropical diseases, reducing HIV/AIDS transmission rates, ensuring every child receives a quality education, levelling the law by reforming and repealing sexist laws, providing funding for women’s health and family planning, and ensuring access to clean water and safe sanitation worldwide.
“I am pleased to lend my support to the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100, in celebration of Madiba’s rich legacy of social justice, compassion and activism,” said Graça Machel, founder and chairperson of the Graça Machel Trust, and Nelson Mandela’s wife.
“Each one of us must take inspiration from his fight for equality by being the generation to end extreme poverty. We must ensure that no child or adolescent dies from preventable causes, including hunger and malnutrition. I call on world leaders, civil society organizations, business leaders and change agents everywhere to join Global Citizen and take action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.”
The partners for the Global Citizen Festival Mandela 100 are the Motsepe Foundation, with major partners, House of Mandela, Johnson & Johnson, Cisco, Nedbank, Vodacom, Big Concerts, BMGF Goalkeepers, Eldridge and Associate Partner, HP.
Since its founding in 2012, Global Citizens have generated commitments and policy announcements from leaders valued at over $37.9 billion that are set to affect the lives of more than 2.25 billion people. This year alone Global Citizens have secured 29 commitments totalling over $2.9 billion that are set to affect the lives of more than 501 million people by 2030. –

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