​Beneficiation Key to Africa’s Development

The African Union Commission (AUC) says the natural resources must contribute to shared prosperity of Africans.

The commission chairperson, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, says that industrialisation, value addition and the beneficiation of raw minerals are important in resolving the paradox of a rich Africa and poor Africans.

Dlamini-Zuma points out that, “If you look at all these big economies and medium-sized countries that have developed, they have developed because of mineral resources.”

​Global Spending on Cancer Medicines to Exceed US$150

Worldwide spending on cancer medicines will exceed US$150 billion by 2020, driven by the emergence of expensive new therapies that help the immune system to attack tumours, according to a global oncology report released by IMS Health Holdings.

That represents an annual global growth rate for oncology drug spending of 7.5 percent to 10.5 percent through 2020, up from last year's IMS forecast of six to eight percent growth through 2018.

​Police Arrest Man With 36 SASSA Cards

Police seized 36 pension cards and an undisclosed sum of money from a 25-year-old man during a sting operation in Durban.

Police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel, Shooz Magudulela, says the Umlazi K9 Unit received information about ‘fraudulent activities’ at a service station in Amanzimtoti‚ south of the city.

The team found the man at an ATM‚ withdrawing cash‚ with 36 South African Social Security Agency cards in his possession‚ with pin codes written on them.

​Only GP, WC, Don’t Rely on Income Grants

The Western Cape and Gauteng are the only two provinces in South Africa where more than two-thirds of households earn salaries as their main sources of income.

In the rest of the country, according to the 2015 General Household Survey, households rely significantly on grants to get by.

According to the report, social grants have an ‘overwhelmingly positive impact’ on poverty reduction, adding that, “They dominate the income profile of many poor households and play a vital role in sustaining lives and livelihoods for households that have no employed members.”

E-Tolls Have Failed – OUTA

When Transport Minister, Dipuo Peters, recently told parliament that the South African National Roads Agency Limited’s (SANRAL) discount offer on old e-toll debt had brought in only R145 million of the R5.9 billion it was owed, the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse was quick to ask: “What clearer message is it going to take for the minister to admit the scheme has failed?”

The organisation points out that a grand total of 130 000 motorists had paid in an average of R1115 each, clearing less than 2.5 percent of the outstanding total dating from before 31 August 2015.

SASSA Reaches Agreement Over Deductions

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) and life assurance company, Lion of Africa, have reached a settlement before an application by the agency was heard by the Constitutional Court.

The agreement‚ which was made an order of the court‚ allows the agency to stop funeral policy deductions from three types of children’s grants.

The judgment means that there would be no new deductions from the three forms of children’s grants between January and May‚ when new regulations from the minister disallowing deductions from children’s grants take effect.

​US Reviews Its Aid to Mozambique

The United States (US) has announced that, in the light of the undisclosed loans to the Mozambican state companies Proindicus and Mozambique Asset Management (MAM), it is reconsidering its aid to Mozambique.
In a press statement, the country’s embassy in Maputo says that the US is joining other donors in reviewing the packages of aid granted to Mozambique.

Donors, Funding Agencies, Suspend Aid to Mozambique

The group of 14 donors and funding agencies who provide direct support to the Mozambican budget have decided to suspend that financial aid, in response to last month's revelations about over a billion dollars’ worth of undisclosed, government guaranteed loans.
The loans are to Proindicus (US$622 million) - a company set up to provide security for offshore oil and gas operations and for shipping in the Mozambique Channel - and to Mozambique Asset Management (US$535 million dollars), the latter is intended to provide maritime repairs and maintenance.

​Dept to Deal With Unauthorised Grant Debits

Social Development Minister, Bathabile Dlamini, says new regulations will remove all loopholes in the transfer of social development grants.
The Department of Social Development says it is clamping down on institutions that are making unauthorised deductions from social grant beneficiaries.
Minister Bathabile Dlamini briefed journalists in Parliament that her department had previously set up a ministerial task team in 2014 to investigate the deductions.

​Africa Experiences Sluggish Economic Growth

The African continent has continued experiencing sluggish economic growth despite having huge resources compared to European counties.
Africa's growth continued to increase from 3.7 percent in 2013 to 3.9 percent in 2014, a performance that is underpinned by improved macro-economic management, diversified trade and investment ties with emerging economies, among other factors.
Africa's social development indicators, however, reveal the often observed economic performance which includes high unemployment and poverty co-existing with robust growth.


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