South Africa

Vodacom Slashes Broadband Prices

Mobile operator, Vodacom, has slashed its broadband standard data prices by up to 43 percent, a move that will see customers pay as little as 14c a megabyte.

Vodacom CEO, Pieter Uys, points out that, "We hope these price reductions will contribute to making the internet more affordable and give our customers an enhanced connected experience."

The company further says that in addition to the savings, all existing and new Vodacom contract customers will be given another allocation of the same size as the subscribed data bundle to use anytime between midnight and 5am.

New Broadband Packages for Cell C

Cell C is introducing new 10 gigabytes and 20 gigabytes broadband packages at rates as low as 3c/megabyte as South Africa’s broadband price war gathers in intensity.

From 1 August, the company will introduce a 10GB/month package, including a 7.2Mbit/s MyZone router or 21.6Mbit/s USB modem, for R499/month on contract for 12 months or R4 999 once-off on prepaid.

The new products come just weeks after 8ta, Telkom’s mobile operator, introduced a special offer of 10 gigabytes of data for R199/month, excluding modem.

SA Has 2.1m Housing Backlog - Sexwale

Human Settlements Minister, Tokyo Sexwale, says that South Africa has 12.5 million people who need shelter due to the housing backlog.

Speaking during the first day of the two-day human settlements youth summit at Durban, Sexwale points out that three million housing units have been given to mainly poor South Africans since 1994.

Human Settlements Vision 2030, said Sexwale, is aimed at creating integrated community settlements encompassing facilities and amenities like schools and hospitals.

Mandela Foundation Mourns Bregman’s Death

The Nelson Mandela Foundation (NMF) extended condolences to the next of kin of Nat Bregman, a attorney whom the former President Nelson Mandela, once described as his first ‘white friend’.

The NMF says that in a recent interview with the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, Bregman recalled how at the time he was a member of the Communist Party of South Africa and invited Mandela to attend ‘mixed parties’ with him, something which impressed Mandela.

Strike Action: Young People Could Lose Jobs

The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) young adults who have just entered the job market will suffer from the recent wave of strikes.

The NYDA fears that strikes over salary increase in the engineering, metal and fuel sectors may lead to job losses in the near future.

NYDA's Stieneke Samuel, who argues that young people are the core for the economy, states that businesses are currently counting their losses.

Samuel explains that revenue losses translate into job losses, adding that when job losses come, they start with the young people.

SA NGO Distributes Food to Starving Somalians

South African aid NGO, Gift of the Givers, has started distributing high energy nutrition packages to starving Somalians.

Gift of the Givers doctor, Imtiaz Sooliman, describes the situation in Somalia as dire, adding that, “What I saw there is extremely horrifying, children that are two-years-old are looking tender and smaller than kids that are three-months-old.”

The United Nations has also declared a famine in Southern Somalia, the region’s worst drought in 60 years.

Sooliman is appealing South African citizens for help through donations.

Govt Urged to Fast Tract Torture Bill

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) has urged the justice department to fast track the combating of torture bill to comply with its international obligations and prohibit acts of torture.
 
In a press statement, SAHRC Vincent Moaga, points out that, "Currently, the act of torture is not a recognised statutory crime in South Africa."
 
Moaga maintains that torture legislation is needed for the criminal justice system to be able deal more effectively with acts of torture.
 

Tatane’s Family Could Sue State – CASAC

The Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution (CASAC) says that there is a strong case for slain protester Andries Tatane's family to sue the state for compensation.
 
CASAC spokesperson, Lawson Naidoo, says the organisation will meet Tatane's family over the next two weeks to explore the options open to them.
 
The family's civil law suit was expected to be directed against Police Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, or National Commissioner, Bheki Cele.
 

Call to Prioritise Poverty Eradication

President Jacob Zuma says that South Africa needs to make poverty eradication a top priority.
 
In his birthday wish to anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela, Zuma says that, "From the moment Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela strode out of prison on the 11th of February 1990, we knew that South Africa would be a different place."
 
He says Mandela showed South Africans that despite the divisive racial oppression and hardships that the nation has gone through, it is not only possible, but necessary to embrace one another and to reconcile the South African people.

Probe Finds NGOs Failed the Hungry

A probe by the Department of Social Development in the Western Cape has found that managers of two state-funded feeding schemes took the food from the mouths of thousands of people.
 
Department spokesperson, Melany Kuhn, says that criminal complaints will be laid against Masibambane Community Gardening and Nutrition Project and the Great Commission Minister's Network in Khayelitsha this week.
 

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