Johannesburg

SABC to rebrand programs

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The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) says South Africans can, from Monday, look forward to reworked and rebranded programming across its television, radio and online platforms.

The public broadcaster says the changes are designed to keep up with the modern broadcast environment and emerging digital opportunities.

The SABC says this includes providing a premium source of news in South Africa and the continent.

The changes will start being implemented from Monday, including a faster paced Morning Live programme on SABC 2.

SABC News on all radio platforms will have a distinct signature tune for news bulletins that will reflect the identity of their premium news source.

Commenting on the repositioning journey, Group Executive of News and Current Affairs, Phathiswa Magopeni stated, “SABC News is the largest news brand in the country, and there is no better way to affirm our role and impact on South Africans than to reimagine and transform our brand to speak to the soul of the nation in a way that is balanced and unrestrained.”

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Source: SABCNews

Judgment reserved on Atul Gupta and Bank of Baroda case

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Gupta brothers (L)

Judgment has been reserved in the High Court in Bloemfontein in the preservation order matter involving the controversial businessman Atul Gupta and the Bank of Baroda.

The legal representatives for Atul Gupta and the Gupta companies have argued that the High Court in Bloemfontein has erred in granting the preservation order to freeze the assets of the Bank of Baroda and the R10 million his in personal account.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) argued that various deposits were made to the Bank of Baroda from the Estina project.

The money left the account as soon as it was deposited.

NPA’s Advocate Thato Ntimutse argued that there is a string of illegitimate transactions in the account and that Bank of Baroda failed to keep proper records of their banking. The court heard that the bank does not operate within the prescripts of the law.

At some stage it received a fine of R11 million from the Reserve Bank.

Ntimutse says: “The fact of the matter is… the Bank of Baroda runs an account which is like a trust account of an attorney, where all the money comes into a single pool, entries are made by someone at the bank to say a certain amount of money has gone in for a certain client.”

The Bank of Baroda’s Legal representative refuted the NPA’s allegations.

Luc Spiller said: “The National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) also went on to make various allegations about the inadequacy of record keeping Baroda.

“The response to that, there has no bearing upon this case… as because it has nothing to do with the principle of co-mangling. The instances of inadequacy are wrong records.”

 The case which was set down for two days has been adjourned; judgement will be delivered next Friday.

 

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Source: SABCNews

Manyi denies links between ANN7, New Age and the Guptas

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Jimmy Manyi continues to deny any existing links between the TV news channel ANN7 and the New Age newspaper and the Guptas.

This despite the fact that the two media entities are still listed on the Guptas’ holding company Oakbay’s official website as part of its group of companies.

Manyi acquired ANN7 and the New Age from the Guptas six months ago for R450 million by way of vendor financing- which means the Guptas lent him the money to buy their assets from them.

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Source: SABCNews

Professor Kgositsile laid to rest

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World renowned poet, Professor Keorapetse William Kgositsile has been laid to rest at West Park cemetery in Johannesburg.

The 79-year-old died on the 3rd of January after a short illness. Deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa has called on the nation to put arts and culture at the centre of nation building.

Ramaphosa was delivering the eulogy.

Kgositsile was a decorated artist whose work reached far and wide.

Not only did he spend close to 30 years in exile but he traversed the world teaching at various universities in the United States and on the continent.

Hundreds of people paid their last respects on Tuesday.

Ramaphosa says: “We must do more to sustain the legacy of this icon so that future generations know who Keorapetse Kgositsile is and will continue to follow his footsteps.”

His colleagues had nothing but praise for his work.

Bra Willie, as he was affectionately known may have been a global icon and literary giant, who was awarded the Order of Ikhamanga in 2006, but he was no less loving to his family.

Plans are afoot to make what would have been his 80th birthday later in 2018 a big event.

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The post Professor Kgositsile laid to rest appeared first on SABC News – Breaking news, special reports, world, business, sport coverage of all South African current events. Africa's news leader..

Source: SABCNews

SABC board to act in line with interim court order

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The Board of the SABC says it will continue to act in line with an interim court order from the High Court in Pretoria in 2017 regarding the appointment of executive management at the public broadcaster.

The SABC earlier denied it had appointed a new Chief Operations Officer (COO) saying the process was still on-going.

This came amid reports that the public broadcaster had appointed media executive Chris Maroleng to the COO position.

The High Court in Pretoria ruled in December that the non-executive members of the public broadcaster’s board appoint the executive members and not cabinet.

This was viewed as a major victory for those campaigning against political interference in the public broadcaster.

Meanwhile, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has warned Communications Minister Mmamolo Kubayi-Ngubane not to repeat the mistakes of previous ministers by interfering in the appointment of top management at the public broadcaster.

Kubayi-Ngubane earlier claimed appointments of top SABC management were done via a cabinet process.

This is in apparent contradiction of the December court order.

EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi says the minister is not making the pronouncements out of ignorance.

“If  the CEO of the SABC is appointed by the cabinet, then the SABC ceases to be a public broadcaster and then becomes a state broadcaster. Then she is dangerous, because we are shocked, because Cyril Ramaphosa said things will be different, yet under his watch, ministers are continuing intervening with the work of the SABC board.”

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Source: SABCNews

Suspended Gauteng health head resigns

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The Gauteng government has confirmed that the suspended head of the provincial Health department, Barney Selebano, has tendered his resignation letter.

Gauteng government spokesperson Thabo Masebe says Selebano gave the letter to Gauteng premier David Makhura.

Selebano was suspended in the wake of the Life Esidimeni tragedy in which at least 143 mentally-ill patients died. This was after they were transferred from Life Esidimeni to ill-equipped and unlicensed NGOs.

However, it is not clear if Selebano’s resignation is connected to the Esidimeni tragedy.

Masebe says Makhura will make an official announcement soon.

“Well, Heads of Departments in the provincial departments are employed by the Premier. And at the time when they decide to terminate their employment services with the provincial government, they will make their indications to the Premier. The Premier is currently dealing with the matter… as soon as there’s a decision, he will make a public statement,” says Masebe.

Meanwhile, Democratic Alliance (DA) leader in the province, Jack Bloom says Selebano must face criminal charges for his role in the deaths of the Life Esidimeni patients despite him tendering his resignation.

“I’m pleased that he’s no longer with the department, but I think that charges should be laid in connection with the Esidimeni matter. I think that resignation or dismissal in the case of all those implicated in the Esidimeni tragedy can’t be the end of the matter. Criminal charges need to be laid; it needs to go further than dismissal or resignation. And I think we need to see justice for the victims of the Esidimeni disaster.”

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Source: SABCNews

Shoprite interim turnover up by 6.3 %

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Retail group Shoprite said on Tuesday its turnover increased by 6.3% for the six months to December 2017, compared to 14% previously, with operations outside South Africa declining.

Shoprite said Supermarkets RSA, the group’s primary business, increased sales by 7.8 % for the period, but the Supermarkets Non-RSA operating segment reported a turnover decline of 0.4% in rand terms.

“The impact of lower commodity prices and the depreciation of local currencies remain prevalent in the larger economies of operation outside of South Africa,” it said.

The furniture division was up 10.8% while other operating segments, mainly driven by the OK franchise division, saw a growth of 6.7%.

“The current pace of growth must be viewed in context of the strong turnover growth of 14% in the corresponding six months in the prior year and overall internal price deflation that occurred in the last quarter,” said Shoprite.

The grocery chain is due to publish its financial results around February 27.

The post Shoprite interim turnover up by 6.3 % appeared first on SABC News – Breaking news, special reports, world, business, sport coverage of all South African current events. Africa's news leader..

Source: SABCNews

Rand weaker ahead of rates decision

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The rand continued to trade sideways on Tuesday, inching weaker against the dollar with investors looking to hold positions ahead of a local interest rate decision later this week.

At 06:30 GMT the rand was 0.14% weaker at 12.3175 per dollar compared to a close of 12.3000 overnight in New York.

The currency initially saw some gains in offshore trade, reaching 12.2850, its firmest since January 4, with inflows driven by higher gold prices and mounting speculation that President Jacob Zuma would soon be forced out of office.

But with little clarity on Zuma’s future and U.S. manufacturing data due in the session investors looked to consolidate recent gains and get ahead of a dollar rebound.

Technical analysis suggests the rand could break in either direction in coming weeks, with support at 12.50 and resistance around 12.20, the latter a major target for bullish bets of a rally below the 12.00 mark. The Reserve Bank is expected to keep interest rates unchanged on Thursday, with seventeen of the twenty economists polled by Reuters last week expecting the bank will leave rates at 6.75%.

Bonds were flat, with the yield on the benchmark paper due in 2026 at 8.51%.

Stocks were set to open higher at 07:00 GMT, with the futures index of benchmark Top-40 up 0.25%.

The post Rand weaker ahead of rates decision appeared first on SABC News – Breaking news, special reports, world, business, sport coverage of all South African current events. Africa's news leader..

Source: SABCNews

Outa welcomes ‘summons’ on Gupta linked companies

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The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) says they’re elated following news reports that the Asset Forfeiture Unit is expected to serve summons on Gupta linked Trillian and consultancy firm McKinsey, for deals they had with Eskom and Transnet.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) last year applied for an order at the High Court in Pretoria to have the companies asserts worth about R 1.6 billion preserved.

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa has promised a crackdown on state capture and on families that had benefitted through corrupt dealings – at the expense of ordinary South Africans.

Outa chief operating officer Ben Theron says, “We had laid charges against Brian Molefe and Ben Ngubane, we’ve laid charges against various people and we’ve actually taken up the case with Parliament where we think that Lynn Brown, even in her silence, is complacent in this process. So we have attempted and ultimately with this case rolling out today is just the start of a very long process where there are billions of rand that’s in people’s hands that must be confiscated and be brought back into the fiscus.”

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Source: SABCNews

Universities insist they were not consulted on free education

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Universities and government have once again clashed, with vice chancellors insisting that they were not consulted about the implementation of President Jacob Zuma’s free higher education plan.

Zuma announced the plan at the African National Congress national elective conference last month.

Meanwhile, Morris Masuthu, the man who is believed to be the mastermind behind the plan, says free higher education is feasible in South Africa.

“It’s long overdue, it’s an issue of life and death. We have a bulk of youth unemployable, the only pre-condition to any form of progress is skilling those young people for them to become economically active so that you have some degree of economy moving forward. The feasibility of higher education in itself has been interpreted through narrow budget interpretations, it must be looked at as a real investment and not a cost,” says Masuthu.

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The post Universities insist they were not consulted on free education appeared first on SABC News – Breaking news, special reports, world, business, sport coverage of all South African current events. Africa's news leader..

Source: SABCNews

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