South Africa : Eighth anniversary of Nelson Mandela International Day

South Africans urged to make every day a Mandela Day on the eighth anniversary of Nelson Mandela International Day

In marking Madiba’s birthday on 18 July, the Nelson Mandela Foundation is inviting all South Africans and citizens of the world to use Nelson Mandela International Day (Mandela Day) as a renewal of commitment to making a sustainable difference in the lives of those less fortunate.

Reflecting on words from Nelson Mandela spoken at Walter Sisulu’s 90th birthday celebration where he said “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.”

Chief Executive of the Foundation Sello Hatang says “It is important that one consider their ability to be of service in a manner that makes a difference.”

In addition to volunteering, as has become the norm, the Foundation urges South Africans and those taking part in Mandela Day activities to continue with their effort well beyond July 18 in our quest to make every a Mandela Day.

This year’s theme is: Taking #ActionAgainstPoverty.

“Today allows us to recommit ourselves to taking action and inspiring change so that we can make every day a Mandela Day. As we go out to plant gardens, build houses or feed pupils, we must know that it does not stop there; July 18 is the start of taking action, not the end. We want South Africans and people around the world to commit to long-term, sustainable projects that will tackle poverty.” says Hatang.

The Foundation has adopted the message #ActionAgainstPoverty this year as a firm call to take action towards meaningful intervention in the lives of those facing poverty and inequality in our society on a daily basis.

“Poverty and inequality are eroding the foundations of the democratic and just society that Madiba fought so hard to establish, and for which he laid the building blocks. Unless we tackle poverty, on a sustained and committed basis, Nelson Mandela’s dream of a better life for all will remain just a pipe dream.” concluded Hatang.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Nelson Mandela Foundation.

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South Africa Is Committed to Increasing Trade with Zambia – Minister Davies

South Africa is committed to increasing trade and addressing the trade imbalance with Zambia. This was said by the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies ahead of a two-day Outward Trade and Investment Mission to Lusaka, Zambia from 24-25 July 2017. Twenty South African companies funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) will participate in the mission.

According to Minister Davies, this mission will assist the department with contributing towards South African’s objectives of regional integration by strengthening economic relations between the two countries. The mission also aims to advance the commitments made in December last year by the Heads of State of both countries during the state visit to South Africa by President Edgar Lungu of Zambia, where both countries agreed to deepen bilateral trade and investment relations. Zambia is one of South Africa’s top five trade partners in the Southern African Development Community region with total bilateral trade amounting to R33 billion in 2016.

“Platforms of this nature afford us the opportunity to not only consolidate political ties but also to create the much-needed value-chains, skills and technology transfer and employment generation required to give effect to our economic ambitions, both in South Africa and Zambia,” adds Minister Davies.

According to Minister Davies, the mission will further enable South African companies to interact with leading private sector entities from agro-processing, agribusiness; infrastructure, advanced manufacturing, energy, services, tourism infrastructure development and mining and capital equipment.

“The mission will also present an ideal platform for South African companies who would like to export value-added products, and services as well as companies which are looking for joint-venture partnerships in Zambia,” adds Minister Davies.

The mission will be addressed by the South African High Commissioner to Zambia, Ms Sikose Mji and the Zambian High Commissioner to South Africa, Mr Emmanuel Mwamba, amongst others. The programme for the mission will be comprised of trade and investment seminar, business-to-business meetings, round-table discussions and sector-specific site visits.

Distributed by APO on behalf of The Department of Trade and Industry, South Africa.

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Source:: South Africa Is Committed to Increasing Trade with Zambia – Minister Davies

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Mohamed Ibn Chambas concludes his visit to Côte d’Ivoire


The Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS), Mohamed Ibn Chambas, concluded today a two-day visit to Abidjan, where he held a series of meetings with the authorities of the country, representatives of the United Nations system, and members of the diplomatic corps accredited in Côte d’Ivoire.



This visit is part of the United Nations continued support and assistance to Côte d’Ivoire following the end of the mandate of the United Nations Operation (UNOCI) mission on 30 June.


Accompanied by the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Côte d’Ivoire, Mr. Mbaye Babacar Cisse, Mr. Ibn Chambas met with the Ivorian officials, in particular with his Excellency the Vice-President of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire; the Prime Minister; The Minister of Foreign Affairs; and the Minister of State for Political Dialogue and Relations with the Institutions.


Mr. Ibn Chambas congratulated Ivorian authorities for the considerable efforts made during the last years which enabled Côte d’Ivoire to emerge from the crisis. In this regard, Ibn Chambas underlined the importance of safeguarding the major achievements that have been achieved thanks to the determination of the Ivorian people and their authorities.


Recalling that the stability of Côte d’Ivoire is not only vital for the Ivorian people but also for the entire sub-region, Ibn Chambas also reiterated the United Nations commitment to continue to support Côte d’Ivoire through the daily work of the United Nations country team.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS).

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South Sudan : Troika and EU Joint Statement


The members of the Troika (Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States) and the European Union condemn the continuing violence in South Sudan, especially the Government of South Sudan’s current offensive against SPLM-In Opposition (SPLM-IO) forces near Pagak, as well as ongoing road ambushes and attacks by the SPLM-IO. The Pagak offensive is a clear violation of the unilateral ceasefire declared by President Salva Kiir on May 22, and calls into question the government’s commitment to reach peace through the National Dialogue, notwithstanding the sincere efforts undertaken by the leaders of the Steering Committee.


The Troika and EU repeat and endorse the June 12 call by the leaders of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) for President Kiir to ensure that his forces respect the unilateral ceasefire, for the armed opposition groups to reciprocate the ceasefire, and for all groups to allow the unfettered delivery of humanitarian assistance to all those in need. We also welcome IGAD’s announcement of a High-Level Revitalization Forum for the South Sudan peace process. We call upon IGAD to expeditiously convene the Forum, and to include the current principal parties to the conflict. Likewise, we urge all parties to fully participate in the Forum. The Troika and EU agree with IGAD that the Forum should focus on achieving a ceasefire and resuming political dialogue that focuses on updating the agreement’s timelines and other provisions that are now obsolete in light of the expansion of conflict since 2015.

The proliferation of violence, displacement, and food insecurity renders any discussion of elections in the foreseeable future as an unnecessary diversion from the primary goals of achieving peace and reconciliation. South Sudan’s leaders, neighbors, and regional and international partners must first focus on achieving peace in order to create the conditions needed to hold credible elections. To achieve these urgent goals, we look forward to the prompt revitalization of an inclusive and credible peace process by IGAD; such progress would be required in order for the Troika and EU to commit further resources to institutions designed to implement the agreement.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

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Source:: Troika and EU Joint Statement on South Sudan

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