Minister Ayanda Dlodlo celebrates phenomenal women as part of Women’s Month, 25 Aug


Minister Dlodlo joins Sedibeng District Municipality to celebrate Phenomenal WomenMinister of Communications, Ms Ayanda Dlodlo will tomorrow, 25 August 2017, join Sedibeng District Municipality to celebrate phenomenal women during their Women’s Month…

Boshof residents brave cold for DTT registration


Hundreds of community members in Boshof, west of Bloemfontein in the Free State, braved the cold weather this week to attend the broadcasting digital migration information session that was held in the area.

Among many community members, who were in attendance, were television viewing households members, who are currently on pay TV platforms, but still met the requirements for government’s subsidised set-top- boxes (STBs).

Thabo Mofokeng is one of the many, who subscribed to one of the pay television platforms, but has since fallen back on the monthly instalments. The high cost of living has constantly put us on the back foot. Subscribing for pay television is a luxury that I cannot afford. I am here to find out if I will be able to qualify for government subsidised decoders,” said Mofokeng.

The broadcasting digital migration policy states that any South African household with a combined income of R3 200 or less qualify for a 100% subsidised set-top-box or decoder. Government has made significant progress in registering indigent households to receive free set-top-boxes for digital terrestrial television.

Broadcasting Digital Migration officials from the Department of Communications are currently visiting municipalities in the district Lejweleputswa in the Free State to drive the public awareness and encourage registration for the STBs.

Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo has since moved to set up a meeting of key stakeholders in the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) migration process consisting of broadcasters and mobile operators. The move is aimed at accelerating the implementation of the project.

I have full appreciation of the impact that the Digital Migration project is set to have in the economy of this country. The primary aim of digital migration is to release valuable spectrum which will be used to provide new services such as wireless and other broadband services.

Furthermore, moving from analogue to digital will allow the digital dividend spectrum to be released to enable the development of more television and other services for consumers. Digital terrestrial television signals are also expected to reach people who live in areas that cannot currently receive them because of spectrum limitations,” said Minister Dlodlo.

In 2014, the Department of Communications commissioned a study on the use of the 2nd Digital Dividend � the spectrum in the 700 MHz Band that will become available for alternative uses � following the analogue-to-digital television switch-over. The report found that the overall value of 700MHz spectrum would be in the region of R3.5 billion, over the 2015-2026 period.

Minister Dlodlo has in various platforms reiterated her commitment to see all South Africans migrating from analogue to digital television within the prescribed period.

Source: South African Government News Agency

Charity Hospital Ship to Perform Free Surgeries in Cameroon


DOUALA, CAMEROON � The world’s largest non-government hospital ship is docked in Cameroon’s commercial capital, Douala, where local health care gaps remain enormous.

Medical staff and volunteers from around the world plan to provide nearly 3,000 free surgeries aboard the Africa Mercy over the next 10 months.

Bernadette Aboudjio traveled 600 kilometers from eastern Cameroon with her two children who suffer from club foot.

She said she brought them here because she has been told that they will get free operations. She said she is very grateful because she does not have the money to take the children to the hospital.

Club foot is just one of many ailments for which little surgical treatment is available in Cameroon.

The Ministry of Health reports that the country has just 4,200 medical doctors for a population of 23 million, and only about half are practicing.

One ambulance recently rushed to the Yaounde general hospital last month to find hundreds of patients suffering from kidney defects blocking the hospital entrance. They said they had not received treatment for two months. Their leader, Aloise Ovidi, said almost all equipment was broken.

He said the government has not been fulfilling its promises even though it is aware 32 people living with kidney defects had died in less than two months.

He said others can no longer walk because only eight of the 17 dialysis machines at the general hospital in Yaounde are functioning. He said instead of the four hours of treatment, patients are receiving just three.

Outside the two main cities of Yaounde and Douala, quality medical care is even harder to find. The Ministry of Health says the majority of the population relies instead of traditional healers.

Cameroon’s health minister, Andre Mama Fouda, told VOA only seven percent of the national budget is allocated for health care.

He said raising that allocation to 15 percent would enable the country to develop the health sector, including infrastructure and surgical equipment. He said many more people should have access to health care but unfortunately the country has many other development priorities and only limited resources.

Back in the waters off Douala, flags fly on the Africa Mercy, the gigantic white vessel housing Mercy Ships’ mobile hospital. The flags represent some of the 40 nationalities of the medical staff and volunteers on board.

Warie Blackburn is the managing director of Mercy Ships. The U.S.-based charity has operated hospital ships in developing nations since 1978.

About 3,000 people from Cameroon we are hoping to help surgically. In addition, we are also planning to help with the training of the doctors, the nurses and other health professionals,” said Blackburn.

She said they have selected the patients on the basis of need, focusing on surgeries that cannot be performed in local hospitals for lack of equipment and qualified staff. Such surgeries include tumor removal and repair of hernias, obstetric fistulas, cleft palates and cataracts.

The government of Cameroon is providing transportation, lodging and food for patients and their families while they receive care.

Mercy Ships hopes to train 1,000 local health care workers to do follow up care and help other patients before the ship raises anchor in June 2018.

Source: Voice of America

North West Tourism launches Tourism Month and Media Tour, 31 Aug and 1 Sept


Invitation to attend official provincial Tourism Month launch and media tour

The North West MEC for Tourism humbly invites you to join her during the Official Provincial Tourism Month Launch and Media Tour where she will reveal planned tourism activities for the whole month.

Tourism Month is celebrated annually in September with the aim of encouraging South Africans to explore their own country. It also provides the tourism industry with an opportunity for a sustained, heightened month-long focus on the importance of domestic tourism to the economy.

Media tour

Media briefing

Date : 31 August 2017

Venue: Royal Marang Hotel, Phokeng, Rustenburg

Time : 17h00 � 19h30

Official Tourism Month launch

Date:1 September 2017

Venue: Royal Marang Hotel, Phokeng, Rustenburg

Time :8h30 – 11h30

Media tour

Date: 1 September 2017

Venue: Royal Marang Hotel,Phokeng, Rustenburg

Time : 11h30 – 17h00

Colleagues are encouraged to respond as soon as possible to allow for proper logistical arrangements on the side of the department. Late confirmations which have a direct impact on logistics will not be considered. You are therefore encouraged to respond not later than Tuesday, 29 August 2017 by end of business.

Source: Government of South Africa